While my grandparents were alive, they spent a lot of time out at our farm. Before her memory left her, Grandma would help Mom prepare meals. I can remember her sitting out on the porch on a hot summer afternoon, bowl full of just-picked green beans, gnarled hands snapping off the ends, while reminiscing of life as a girl before the turn of the century.
Like most farm yards of the time, our yard consisted of as many 'weeds' as grass. Especially dandelions. Even if the norm had been for farmers to treat their yards the way folk did in town, with fertilizer and weed control, my parents probably wouldn't have wanted to spend the time and money to have a lush, weed-free lawn. So the weeds--especially dandelions--had free range of the Prussner farm lawn.
Grandma Paul happened to love those dandelions that grew in our yard, especially when she could turn them into a tasty meal for her family! (Years later, my mother confided that she never liked cooked dandelions, but would eat them out of love for Grandma.) I can remember Grandma as if it were yesterday, cotton apron covering her dress, bent over in the yard picking greens with delight. She would then cook the dandelion greens with onions, and mashed up potatoes in a little bacon fat and serve them up for supper. Yum!
This afternoon I thinned the row of radishes in my garden, and decided the cast-offs looked too delicious to discard (see above). I think I channelled a little bit of Grandma Paul, in that I wondered if radish greens are edible. After a quick search on Google, I discovered that, like dandelion greens, radish greens are edible. And super nutritious. Just like dandelion greens. Tomorrow I plan to sauté the radish plants that I pulled today--roots and greens together-- with some onion and potato, and vinegar instead of bacon fat, and have them for lunch. Waste not, want not. Grandma would be proud of me!
"God said, 'See, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food.'" (Genesis 1: 29)