The Curry Garden is so named, to offer an identity to the tiny lot that surrounds ur house and seems to offer so much joy and happiness all though so much of the year. Reading labels and watching ingredients are really not a part of my DNA, it is not how I grew up. Although, shopping options and the way we live are different, from those of my childhood. As a classic and nervous older mom, when my children were born, I began paying attention to food labels and despite the relative lack of unprocessed foods in our own home, I was shocked to see how complex the labels for everyday items were, how much sodium some of the products contained and the vast diversity of quality between different items in the grocery store. In general, trying to process all of the information was beginning to take the fun out of cooking. I wanted to educate my children about good eating choices but really did not want to curb the spirit of spontaneous eating. I wanted them to learn about good food choices naturally.
I suddenly realized that this is where our backyard, which is the Curry Garden, could help. Since my husband was already tending to this small lot, we got the children involved to help them connect with their food and the environment. This hub of activity, offers us self- sufficiency for a large number of months in the year. In the summer months, most of our food comes from the backyard and in spring and fall, I need just a little help from our local markets. The children now have their own little lots and every year the children try their hand at new things, like the kale last year, which started as a science experiment.
It adds a lot of brightness to my evening cooking routine to have them bring in the latest catch, or get excited about my newest creation. In fact, it is My Curry Garden than has fostered my excitement in vegetarian cooking, as it is impossible to beat the excitement of working with fresh everyday produce and of course, enjoying the challenge of cooking with what is available rather than with some pre-planned food choices. It had brought back the sustainability in my kitchen, in a wholesome and organic manner and I do not have to worry about reading labels.
It is in the natural spontaneity of this plot, I have learned to recognize and work with green garlic, chives, dandelion greens, actually greens of every conceivable variety. It is important for us to try and work with native plant varieties as they grow best in their own natural environment. This does not mean, we do not have fun with colors.