Living here makes me a better person. I get up earlier. I grow stuff, I fish. I keep the house clean and occasionally mop. I have enhanced capacity for mental calculation. It’s really exceptionally rare that I lock my dog out of the house. I take in homeless people. Well, I would do if I came across any, which I don’t really. But if I did, I would totally put them up in the spare room and feed them nourishing meals three times a day and do their laundry. Although after a while, assuming they didn’t have substance addictions or a mental illness, I would be seriously asking why they weren’t out earning money and finding another place to squat. And what if I didn’t like them? I couldn’t kick them out because everyone would assume I was administering el-booto because they were disadvantaged.
It’s probably better I don’t take in homeless people.
Every week, we go into Blenheim for provisions. I often buy foodstuffs with no idea how I plan to apply them – but to equip myself for combat with any recipe. This is the reason that, at the end of every week, the fridge is bare but for rubbery bulbs of fennel, or a limp head of celery.
Anyway, in the spirit of being a better person with the exception of taking in homeless people, I excavated my juicer yesterday. The juicer hasn’t seen active service since we lived in Dubai, although it did survive The Night Of The Great Plug Swap two years ago.
I juiced the rubbery bulb of fennel and the limp stalk of celery along with a wrinkled apple, and a carrot with black spots. I will go out on a limb by saying it was not as horrid as it sounds. In fact, it was pretty tasty.
Now, I have decided to clear the garden of any plant life that I cannot identify (bear with me; this is going somewhere, I’m almost certain of it.) This morning, after tearing up what might originally have been cauliflower, I started in on a big patch of foliage. And it turned out to be . . . MORE radishes. It’s like The Day of the Triffids out there. Except, I suppose, it’s more The Day of the Radishes. You can’t move for <expletive deleted> radishes.
I pulled up four of them. They were the size of kumara. Some of them had more than one tuber.
Neither Husband nor myself are fans of radishes – although, in my case, I’ve never fully figured out why. They’re peppery, they’re crunchy, they pack – if not a punch – then a vigorous goosing. But here’s the thing: I can’t abide crunchy stuff in salads. Carrots in a salad? Instant panic attack. And where else do radishes go but in salads? They are the quintessential salad ingredient, according to pretty much every crossword clue concerning salad vegetables six letters.
As the radishes annexed my kitchen, I stared at them trying to decide how to eradicate them. Then, as the radishes performed practice manoeuvres across the bench, my eye fell on the juicer.
There are a surprising number of juice recipes on the internet which include radishes. Apparently, radishes are rich in vitamin C and helpful in cases of jaundice and tuberculosis, which is always useful to know.
I peeled the radish and juiced it with an apple and two carrots. The piquancy of the radish complemented the sweet apple and carrot perfectly. I am aware that saying it was a TASTE SENSATION is the equivalent of hanging myself off the limb with a big bullseye painted on my torso.
Go ahead: take your best shot.