Tag Archives: basil

snap pea-infused gin cocktails with basil, cucumber + mint | making adjustments + slowing down

I stood outside in my garden, atop the raised kale and Swiss chard bed, and pressed my cracked phone up to my face, eagerly asking, “Are you outside yet? Is it cloud-covered there? Can you see it, too?” It was just after 8:00PM last Friday night, and my mother and I were standing outside in our respective time zones, which differed by two hours, watching the full, Harvest Moon rise.

“My” moon was full and golden, bloated and sated with possibility, swelling with pride, as it slowly emerged from the east, over the neighboring trees. Back home in Florida, “hers” stood prominently overhead, appearing a little smaller due to its rise, less distorted by the horizon, yet regally shining its sun-reflected light on her driveway, awash on her face.

We marveled at the fact that both of us were observing the very same event, at the very same time, each witnessing differing perspectives. It made the world feel just a little smaller. We stood in silence for a moment and then said our slow goodbyes. I ended the call and sat down on the cedar beams of the raised garden. At first, all was quiet and rather hazy, but as I settled in, the stars came out of hiding, the early evening bats frenetically fluttered above, and the crickets restarted their unified song.

The evening was alive, and, at long last, so was my mind.

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watermelon + basil + cucumber + gin cocktail

Summer may be slowly approaching a close, but all of the vegetables and herbs in my garden are ripening faster and faster.  I can barely catch up with all of the weeding, watering, pruning, harvesting, preserving, and, the most wonderful part, enjoying.  To create this refreshing, gin-based, end-of-summer treat, I used fresh watermelon, cucumber, and basil from the garden.

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how to make basil pesto

Another day off, and another day that I wanted to spend catching up on a good read, hanging out with a good friend, or simply staring into the sky.  Not to be had.  At its end, the day ended up to be quite rewarding, albeit taxing, along the way!  There was so much basil in the yard and garden plot that it was almost overwhelming.  Half the day was spent catching up, over breakfast, with my boyfriend, who is as equally dedicated as I am in this gardening-cooking-preserving journey.  We planned our day, gulped a couple of cups of coffee, and set out to make the most of it, despite the fact that we really wanted to just put in a movie and zone out!
An abundance of basil at the garden plot…about double the amount awaited us at the house.

You can apply this blog post’s concept at almost any level:  cut and harvest at the peak of freshness and flavor, and m-a-x-i-m-i-z-e.  Right after clipping, we headed to Whole Foods and picked up the necessary ingredients for pesto:  olive oil and Parmigiano-Reggiano (both shredded and powdered).  We already had plenty of parsley, sea salt, and pepper at the house, so we were set.

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