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Photorealism Canning, And Garden Stream of Consciousness

Sunday, June 05, 2011

This weekend I'm making jam. Strawberry jam (yum). And being around those glorious mason jars made me think of Glennray Tutor's photorealism painting Still Life: A Season of Moment at the Mississippi Museum of Art:
Glennray Tutor at Mississippi Museum of Art

...and when the cucumbers are *just* the right size for making pickles...

Glennray Tutor at Mississippi Museum of Art

...which made me think of the okra.  Those beautiful cousin-to-cotton blooms, then they're picked at the perfect size to pickle them (let them dance in your bloody mary, so nice!).  Or let them go and have a beautiful bunch for frying.  Keep them for gumbo.   Oh, honestly, I even like them boiled and slimy, with stewed tomatoes and rice.  Hello, beautiful okra:

Okra and Green Tomatoes

...then the okra led me to think about another part of the garden, and one of my favorite Faulkner quotes, from a supper-time conversation he had with Katherine Anne Porter in Paris.  Eugene Walter wrote about it this way in American Cooking: Southern Style:

Everything had been laid out to perfection; a splendid meal had been consumed, a bottle of fine brandy emptied, and thimble-sized glasses of an expensive liqueur drained.  The maitre d' and an entourage of waiters hovered close by, ready to satisfy any whim.  


"Back home, the butter beans are in," said Faulkner, peering into the distance, "the speckled ones."  Miss Porter fiddled with her glass and stared into space.  "Blackberries," she said, wistfully.

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