January 6, 2010
Currently, there is a war raging on our property against the birds, lots of birds. They fearlessly taunt our Labradoodle, devour sugar snap peas and lettuce from the garden, and must be stopped! If the birds have the high ground, then the snails seem to cover the low. Our defensive tactic for the birds means a caging of the peas and lettuces. With the combination of Sluggo (a safe, non toxic and biodegradable snail bait) and hand picking of the snails, we have momentarily gained snail control.
The bummer about caging the plants from the birds is that you have to remove all the cumbersome wires and secure sticks to get to the produce, which is a pain for me and the produce is less accessible for the girls’ healthy snacking.
However, our defensive attack has started working and the garden is looking much better. Albeit, a few weeks ago it honestly looked like crap, but it is coming around and for now – the lettuces are safe. The arugula has seen better days, but the Romaine, red leaf and “cut and come” mix is doing superb. A little side note: “cut and come” mixes are great for any garden, because you just cut off what you need and it grows back. Also, you get a wonderful variety of a yummy of greens with one easy seeding.
With all this work to save the lettuces, I am making sure we enjoy the thrill of victory by enjoying lots of salads. Today, I share my take on the wedge.
The wedge salad is always a crowd pleaser. It is crispy, satisfying and superb for entertaining or family meals. This salad is a snap…easy to assemble and it looks fabulous plated on a big platter. My tasty dressing is inspired from one my Aunt Penny shared when we visited her on the Jersey Shore. It works well for both a dip and dressing. In the winter I rarely use fresh tomatoes unless I can find the smaller Campari tomatoes on the vine…they seem to have more flavor during the off season.
Our bird dog, Penny.
2 heads of Romaine Hearts or Butter lettuce cut it in quarters
3 tomatoes cut in 6 wedges
2 tablespoons of Meyer lemon juice
½ cup Gorgonzola crumbled
1/3 low fat sour cream or Greek yogurt
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon salt
Cracked pepper to taste
Cut the wedges in half then cut in half one more time, so you have four pieces from each head of lettuce. Arrange the wedges on a platter and with a soup spoon put a large dollop of the dressing on each of the segments so the dressing oozes over the wedges. Sprinkle the tomatoes over the entire platter and garnish with a fresh herb of choice (I prefer chive or parsley). To serve, give each guest their own wedge. Birds be damned!