Slow food, Ireland

I suppose you could say that all food grown or raised in Ireland could be classified as ‘slow’ as the country is so small that you can get from one end to the other in a day.

My mother does have a pretty diverse vegetable garden, though, and it feels good to eat something straight from the earth not far from your door!  My friend Tonya has gotten into growing her own veg, too, so if she is reading this I know she can relate.

In the garden are such things as cabbage, rhubarb, leeks, shallots, scallions, string beans, zucchini, spinach, raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries.  My mother’s neighbor, Margaret, who lives across the road also has a garden and there is some swapping of produce on occasion.

On Tuesday we had fresh spinach with our dinner (I just love spinach!) and blueberries and raspberries afterwards.  Margaret had also brought over some plums and damsons (the little purple plums in the photo).

While she was visiting the other day, Margaret told me she had a hazelnut tree.  I don’t think I have ever even seen a hazelnut tree but they are one of my favorite nuts.  She said the tree bore very few nuts this year for some reason but she did manage to find a few for me!  Fresh of the tree the hazelnuts are a bit softer than what you normally get and taste a little bit on the chestnut side.

Margaret said that when she was a kid she used to run through a neighbor’s field with her siblings on the way to and from school and he had a lovely hazelnut tree that they used to pick clean.   Years later she said something to the farmer about how much they loved that tree and he remarked to her that he didn’t even know he had a hazelnut tree as he never saw any nuts!  Cheeky kids!

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