The Thursday before the Easter long weekend is always a happy jumble of madness and excitement and, in our part of the world, a feeling that, at last, the harvest is in. That Good Friday this year just so happens to fall on the same day as the first Seder of Pesach meant that an early morning visit to the organic vegetable shop was crazy-good. A beautiful older woman sidled up next to me, basket heavily laden, and asked if I'd ever made chicken soup. We discussed the pros and cons of peeling the carrots and parsnips, whether swede would be a good addition (I think not, but perhaps I am wrong) and it was one of those gorgeous food chats I so love.
Made my morning, truth be told. That and the visual plenty that boxes overflowing with apples and pears, quince and persimmon, fennel and celeraic (andandand) can make a cook feel.
Right at the end I spied fresh horseradish, in a bucket just beneath the herbs - if we didn't have so much parsley, I'd've gone nuts for the autumnally-fragrant dill draped softly above it. Only the loveliest of specimens came home. Horseradish is an essential part of the Seder plate, you see, represents the bitterness of the Jews' slavery under the Egyptians. That I grabbed it knowingly made me happy upon reflection; means I've been with these blokes long enough to have absorbed at least some of their 5000-year plus culture.
The light here is beautiful right now. This season of plenty is by far my very favourite.
Happy break, guys. May it be energising and renewing for all.
P.S. YOU guys. Thank you for all of your mint suggestions - I feel as though I am armed, now, with some of the best ideas. Wonderful stuff, people.