Wednesday, January 24, 2018


There's a sprinkle of snow coming from the cloudy sky. Everywhere I look, it's either white, gray or brown.  But, in some peculiar way, I look forward to days like this in the heart of summer.
I've written before about the particular joys of preserving food - especially the food you've planted, tended and harvested with your own hands.

On those summer days, when I'm lining up the shiny glass jars full of tomatoes on the old rough shelves in the cellar, my mind jumps to a day much like today.  I see myself making a trip to the cellar to retrieve a couple of those jars. And later I will hear the ringing pop as I break the seal. I will catch the scent of tomatoes as the fruit splashes into the pan.
Today there's a pot of bolognese simmering on the stove, the complex aroma of tomatoes, onions, garlic and peppers rising with the steam.
I reach for the smaller jars of dried herbs from Thelma Metzger's old Napanee cupboard, their faded colors belying the crisp sharpness within the confines of glass. It's summer again as I carefully cut the stalks of basil, gently rinse and dry them, arranging the leaves just so on the drying racks. A bit later the delightful signature basil fragrance spills out the open windows as the leaves curled to store their goodness for a day like today.

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