It’s stormy here in Northern Cali. The weather isn’t stable. The wind gusts sometimes, the rain falls sometimes, the sun shines sometimes. But the garden, weedy, in need of care, and sadly neglected has decided to send me love.
Last year, I planted one rosette. This is now a small tree. Okay, very low bush thing.
The English lavender sent out bloom spikes, not yet ready to harvest, though.
Not sure what these are called, but I hope it keeps spreading to become a ground cover. I’ve been waiting years for it to spread.
But the irises, these come up, year after year. This time, I managed to capture a photo that reminds almost of van Gogh’s painting.
All too soon these guys will fade. And my garden will return to their derelict looking truth. I should spend more time in it. I really should.
I should move these to the backyard. Soon. And the bamboo. Since they flowered, I’m unsure if they’ll come back to life soon. I hope so, I miss their stately grace.
My brother and his wife gave me a bundle of yard long beans from his garden. And, of course, that’s dinner tonight.
Cut the yard long beans or if there are no yard long beans, green beans will do as well. About the length of a finger is good. Remove the tips and the ends. Slice onions and garlic. Heat up oil in a pan on high heat. Throw in the onions and garlic and stir fry until fragrant. Then throw in the washed beans. Stir fry for about five minutes until beans are tender. Splash a dash of soy sauce and stir fry one more minute. Add a gauging pinch of crushed red pepper flakes. Stir fry for another minute. Serve with rice!
Bought the Asian chive flower heads from the Asian store. And I was planning on cooking then with eggs. However, some shiitake mushrooms beckoned. And a stir fry was born.
Stir fry a bit of pork in a hot pan with oil, garlic salt and black pepper. Then add a can of sliced bamboo mushrooms. Then add sliced fresh shiitake and the chives. Stir fry until shiitake is done. Add oyster sauce and crushed cayenne peppers.
A little note. Shiitake, the fresh mushrooms, work better in stir fries whereas the dried ones work better in soups. Their consistency has changed, you see, once they are dried. Yes, you do have to soak them in water.
Not only that, but shiitake has a distinct smell to them. Earthy, sort of nutty… It’s not like the button, enoki or oyster mushrooms.
So, if you do not like the shiitake smell, substitute them for oyster mushrooms instead.
I bought some garlic chives and didn’t realize…these were growing in my yard!!!! LOL!
How is it that I have them growing is beyond me! Oh, wait. I threw a few seeds in ONE pot a few years ago. Now four pots later…
However, still not enough for a good stir fry.
Got the recipe from the internet. Then twisted it to my taste.
Shrimp, stir fried with Asian chives and oyster mushrooms. No need for garlic as the chives lend their garlicky kick right there! These are crunchy and delicious!
Heat oil in wok, throw in shrimp and stir fry until slightly pink. Throw in chives and stir fry a little, throw in oyster mushrooms, pour out four tbsp of oyster sauce, a dash of black pepper and it should be done. But the addition of sesame seed oil makes it more. And just for a bit more heat, a twisting pinch of red pepper flakes.
This was dinner last night.
Someone told me about niratama. Hmmmm and I just escaped the Asian store with some Garlic chives buds… My… Perhaps tomorrow.
My brother took this bundle from his yard! Delicious! Spicy, mildly like wasabi. This is wild mustard. You see them on the roadside around this time of year, winter, during the rains.
I blanch the leaves and tender tops, slice onions, and tomatoes over them. Then season with fish sauce!
Or throw them into stir fries, like a version of yakisoba. Or into garden pasta with garlic and olive oil.
It’s rather like spinach but with a bit of bite.
But tonight, that’s not happening.
Shin Bowl Ramen (yes, spicy Korean one!), wild mustard, squid rings and a healthy helping of sesame seed oil. This is dinner.