A site for sore tastebuds and a woeful wallet

Lunch For Half Off

Some people think I’m half off for calling this stuff that grows wild by the air conditioner food.  But this wild lettuce has become one of my favorite parts of the salads I make.   This God-sent crop grows wild and early.  Since He puts it there I will accept His grace!  Winter has been so long and honestly I’m ready to eat anything that comes straight from the ground.  I’ve already started a few bib-lettuces and potatoes.  As sort of a makeshift cold frame (and squirrel and bunny deterrent) I cut the bottoms off of plastic milk jugs and pop them over the little plants during the cold times.  When it’s sunny, I’ll let ’em have it all.  This weekend my husband and I will be working on a real cold frame so more hope is on the horizon.  We plan to plant a lot of things that don’t mind an early start like carrots, radishes,  lettuces, chard and spinach, peas and beans.  Aaahh!  I can’t wait!

While I do have to wait, at least until May, for more homegrown veggies, I combine what I already have with things from that old ‘fridge crisper drawer.  I cut up carrots into little match sticks, celery into tiny cubes, halve some grape tomatoes, and chop up some broccoli and a scallion.  I already have a bag of butter lettuces but not enough for a good size salad so I go out the back door and not even a foot away is all the lettuce I could dream of.  So I just grab a hank.  What is growing wild out there is enough to make dozens of salads…and I probably will do exactly that.  While the plants are this young the taste is best.  It tends to take on some  bitterness with age.  It is still pretty good though.  The rosettes you see in the top picture had just begun in the fall.  They made it all through the winter under ice and snow and more snow.  Tough stuff with a tender taste I’ll tell you, Mm!  So it’s time to plate up and dress up.  It calls for my favorite spring dressing, raspberry vinaigrette.   Oh, this beautiful salad looks like  something divine!  I am now going to dive into it and never come up until I’m finished with every fresh and crunchy and delicious bite!


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