These past few days have found me washing raspberry stains off my fridge handle and sand out of my hair. And eating copious amounts of snap peas.
Aspects of high-summer send my mind racing back to childhood like chasing a ball down a hill before it gets to the street. I am struck by whatever memory pops up out of the variety of sensations this time of year. Like raspberries and sand. Or the feeling of walking past a creek: the coolness and the smell of wet rocks and moss inviting one to get closer. Maybe to get in it, if mom says it’s okay.
One of my favorite smells is of rain on warm soil. It’s the country version of my other favorite: rain on sidewalks (which is what I grew up with). The smell is so distinct, and so wonderful. It smells like rejoicing.
Janaki has been spending his free time (ha- that isn’t a thing he has) irrigating the fields
these past couple of weeks. Between newly seeded cover crops and full grown broccoli (and everything in between) everyone out in the dirt is thirsty. We’re lucky we have the infrastructure to water everything- but it’s not the same as a good long rain.
Day after day of lovely weather has upsides for sure. It’s weed killing weather, and I have no idea where my good rain jacket is. It is just a matter of time until the rain comes – and though it might rain on a parade or picnic later this week, I hope that when it comes you’ll rejoice like the soil and the farmers.
For the thirsty farm crew,
- Green Onions
- Green Peppers
- Snap peas
Swiss Chard Pancakes
2 cups (475 ml) whole milk
2 1/2 cups (325 grams) all-purpose flour
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon coarse salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
3 green onions, snipped
1 shallot, coarsely chopped
2 garlic cloves, split, germ removed, and coarsely chopped
Leaves from 10 parsley sprigs
5 large or 10 small Swiss chard leaves, center ribs removed, roughly chopped
About 1/2 cup (120 ml) grapeseed, peanut, vegetable, or olive oil
To serve: Plain, thick yogurt mixed with a little lemon zest, lemon juice and salt, to taste
If you’d like to keep your finished pancakes warm while you cook them: Heat oven to 250 degrees F and line a baking sheet with foil.
Make the batter: Put everything except the Swiss chard and oil in a blender or food processor and whirl until the batter is smooth. Scrape down sides. Add chard leaves and pulse machine until they’re chopped to your desired consistency.
Cook the pancakes: Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and pour in a good puddle (1/4-inch deep) of oil. Once oil is hot enough that a droplet of batter hisses and sputters, spoon about 3 tablespoons batter in per pancake. It will spread quickly. Cook until browned underneath and (the edges will scallop, adorably), then flip, cooking on the other side until browned again. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate, and then, if you’d like to keep them warm, to the foil-lined tray in the oven.
Repeat with remaining batter. Serve with lemony yogurt or another sauce of your choice.
Do ahead: Unused batter keeps in fridge for 3 days. Finished pancakes keep in fridge for a couple days, and will freeze much longer. Separate pancakes with pieces of waxed or parchment paper so they don’t glue together.