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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

A Personal Best

This is going to be your personal best tabbouleh, the perfect summer lunch to take to work. Get up early and add ice cubes to yesterday’s leftover coffee. Your caffeine jolt doesn’t need to be hot to get you moving on a warm, still morning. Last night you poured boiling water over the bulgur and let it sit, so that’s ready. Now add olive oil, chop cucumbers and tomatoes and onions (use a good, sharp knife — don’t saw!) and stir them in gently, then squeeze fresh lemon juice over everything and stir again. The vegetables are all from your own garden or the farm market, of course. 

Now go out to your garden while everything is cool and beaded with dew and gather nice, big, beautiful, dark green parsley. Chop and add. 

There’s only one ingredient missing now, so on your way to work (tabbouleh packed in a cooler, with a container of yogurt on the side), stop by a swiftly running stream and gather fresh mint. When you get to work, you’ll rinse the mint well, chop it and add it to the mix, then refrigerate everything until lunch announces itself. Hunger is the announcement. 

When you get home after work later in the day, finish mowing grass and have leftover pizza from the night before as your evening meal. (You had your salad for lunch.) Check the garden for more ripe cucumbers before you turn in for the night. Tomorrow you can make a cold cucumber soup to serve and enjoy with meat from the grill.

I used the silly word “leftover” twice above. Edit that out. Planning ahead makes life easier. You don’t throw out good coffee when you can have it the next day over ice. You order a medium pizza rather than a small for two people so there will be enough for another evening. Because if you didn’t plan ahead, how would you ever keep up with and survive the busy summer season?

“Time goes on slippin’, slippin’ / into the future….”

And eggplants are coming along. Those will be good on the grill, too.

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