Tuesday, February 10, 2009

more beans.

thingstogrow

Recently my good friend Alia bought a sweet little home in outer SE Portland, the area where I am poking around. Until we figure out this home buying thing (I'm taking Home Buying 101 through the Portland Housing Center at the end of the month, very exciting!) I've been living vicariously through my buddies who have been lucky enough to get into some lovely little houses. Alia told me that last year, a persistent little green vine kept poking its way to the top of her compost heap. After covering it over and over, not really thinking about what it might be, she finally felt bad and pulled the whole thing out (it turned out to be several inches long!) and planted it. As it grew, it revealed that it was a bean plant. She pulled the pods open and was surprised to see little spotted pinto beans! The plant hardly produced enough beans to mention, but she ended up with a good handful, which she dried, and plans to plant this spring. I can't wait to help her pick, dry, and cook them. (Or at least photograph the process. By the way, if you've got sharp eyes- yes, the photo above pictures pinto beans and sunflower seeds. She had them in the same jar.) Hopefully by this time next year we'll be getting ready to buy our own home, and when I start thinking about the endless gardening possibilities, my eyes glaze over. Thoughts of rain barrels, chicken coops, worm bins- you know, hippie stuff. I can't wait to show my son how to grow vegetables. One of my favorite things to do when I was a kid was walk out to the garden and pull up carrots, rinse them with the hose, and eat them with the tops still on (usually while impersonating Bugs Bunny). I also enjoyed (and still do) eating green beans raw, straight off the vine. My mom usually got pretty pissed if I snagged all her beans, but it was worth it.

14 comments:

laura said...

There's something so soothing about sitting on the back porch in the dead of summer and shelling beans. Growing up I always used to help my grandma shell. We tossed all the beans into a big metal mixing bowl & that 'ping' sound it makes when it hits the bowl is fantastic.

REread said...

I tried to grow my own beans but in the middle of an Australian summer I failed ... I am going out back to try again after reading that post ... c'mon little beans

katri said...

oh, look at those beans! so pretty. and good luck with the home-buying! i love gardening and have always dreamed of growing my own vegetables, but i'm also ridiculously fond of the city life and i reckon the only gardening i'm ever going to do is growing potted tomato plants on a balcony.

darah said...

You're at the exact same place we were last year. I was pouring over seed catalogs and poultry magazines plotting what I would/could do when we owned our own home. My husband said I was two seconds away from making a diorama on the kitchen table. Anyways.
A year later I'm looking at the same catalogs knowing I get to actually plant something. In the ground. In my own backyard! And I'm ridiculously excited. I let my daughter pick out what she wants in her little plot.
I just wanted to say good luck and have fun plotting and planning. It's so worth the wait!

Kerri Rae said...

Very cool. I didn't realize how easy it was to grow pinto beans ;-)

I hear ya on owning a garden. It is sooo exciting when I house sit for a family up here in North Eastern Washington and they tell me I can have what I want from the garden... I GO CRAZY!!! I cannot wait to own my own house and have my own fabulous garden... Pinto Beans here I come!
~great blog by they way, I am a big follower and found it to be so funny that you hail from the town I hope to live in my near future.

Wendy said...

You know you can do worm bins indoors, right? If we put ours outside, they'd freeze in the winter and fry in the summer.

Alicia Carrier said...

wendy, yes- i know you can do worm bins inside, but there's not really any point in making one if the only thing you have outside is a parking lot :)

Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary said...

I guess I'm a hippie too cause I have a rainbarrel and a garden and I'm getting me some worms soon! Yeah for hippies and beans and carrots!

Cindy said...

This is so strange, but last night I had a dream that I met you and we were talking about beans! ha! Anyway nice to have "met" you and I want you to know I really enjoy reading your blog. It has inspired the baker in me. thanks!

Chocolatesa said...

Some of my nicest childhood memories are of running out to the garden in the summer to fill the front of my dress with sweet yellow and plum tomatoes from the garden to eat fresh :D

Maria said...

We are planting a garden this year! I can't wait!!

meet me at mikes said...

Beans definitely don't just mean Heinz in our house! I love them stewed with finely sliced onions and proscuitto and garlic and heaps of fresh herbs. Then some fetta and diced tomatoes tossed in at serving time for a bit of freshness and zing!

Sorry to post a URL - but perhaps your commenters or readers can help us?
We are making a recipe book to distribute to the survivors of last weekend's Victorian Bushfires. Many people lost EVERYTHING - including, of course, their recipes.

This is one of many projects up and running to assist the survivors in the long term. See http://www.handmadehelpsout.blogspot.com or http://meetmeatmikes.blogspot.com/2009/02/homemade-handmade-help-recipe-book.html for details - and please help us if you have a spare five minutes!

Thank you for your lovely blog and your beautiful photos and your delicious recipes!

morning said...

miam!

i like pouring a bunch o beans into a bowl + water and then watching the beans expand hour by hour as the water disappears

cantaffordanikon said...

lovely blog! putting together two arts, culinary and photog is genius!! props!