Spring On Toast – Black Morels, Asparagus and Eggs
Also old-faithful walking onions, always the first to appear, and a handful of garlic chives, currently taking over the side bed that’s due for renewal and therefore has not been weeded at all.
Here in our part of the Hudson Valley, this year spring is on toast in more ways than one. I’m in the office with, I confess, the air conditioner on because none of the shade trees are leafed out yet and it’s 89 **!!@^%! Degrees. Same as yesterday and tomorrow and then on Tuesday it’s supposed to get hot.
The red tulips had one day! Truth. Buds cracked in the evening at bedtime on Friday, full open by noon Saturday, then exhausted by eveniing, just like the rest of us. The pink ones, admittedly, had been open for 2 days but I was rather enjoying them.
So. Looking at the forecast made this morning a nightmarish recap of fall, when you rush around picking all the flowers that will be blasted by frost.
Dad blast it! Here we go again. When the heat is this extreme, tulips, late narcissi, grape hyacinths and similar will all last longer in the house than they will outdoors. Large bunches are in the cellar, coolest spot we got.
Most years, the first black morels and asparagus come before the tulips bloom, before the bleeding heart is budded up, while the grass is barely green. Bill found these – first of the season – two days ago yesterday; no knowing how long they’ll last this year.
(He’s doing a post on Hunting Black Morels that should be coming your way shortly.)
*One morel per egg is enough if you gently stew pieces in a lot of butter to thoroughly flavor the fat before adding the asparagus.
*Home grown asparagus often comes in varying thicknesses. The fat pieces do take longer to cook, just enough so if you add it all at once the little ones will be overdone. Two batches is worth it, even though there’s only about a minute between them.
*Freshly-picked asparagus is tender a quite way below the snap line. Press gently with a paring knife to find the spot where the hard part starts, cut there, then use a carrot peeler to remove the tough lower skin.
*The eggs in the photo ended up a bit overcooked by the time I got done fussing with the camera. The goal is smooth and semi-solid, more like impossibly thick egg sauce than classic scrambled eggs.( That’s why the bread isn’t toasted; eggs aren’t soft enough for that. Still tasty, however.)