recipe posted below:
Oklahoma is blessed with two growing seasons. Vegetable gardeners nurse crops through the middle of July and then start over again on many Fall vegetables around the end of August. This year has been a little weird, as it was exceedingly cool and wet through May and the first part of June. Crops are a bit late this year, but now that they are coming in, they are coming in with a bang!
This morning, I gathered my shovel and wheel barrow, donned my garden gloves and headed out to dig potatoes. The sun was shining brightly at 6:45 a.m. and I knew that I had better get busy because the cool has gone and the 100 degree temps are now normally setting in. The air smelled fresh and clean and a heavy dew covered the ground. As I dug potatoes, I was treated to the various songs of a Mockingbird who was perched on top of our light pole. Mr. Mockingbird – the grand impersonator – ran through his repertoire – Bobwhite Quail, Phoebe, Cardinal, Crow, Whip-o-will, and his own personal warble. He’s so good, that one would swear that it was the real birds all calling out together.
The dirt smelled sweet as I dug to the side and beneath each plant, lifting a big clump full of potatoes. The dirt is as black and rich as can be, having been worked and mulched and composted these past 12 years. It started out as what is known in Oklahoma as “blow sand”. That is the bulk of our soil here in our area. But as horse manure, compost and mulch have been added every year, the sand has become the richest sandy loam.
Potatoes are a miracle to me. From one seed potato that looks just like any that you would eat, as many as 4 plants can be had, by cutting the seed potato into pieces with “eyes” and then planting those. Each piece grows a plant and from each plant many of the tubers are produced. They invisibly enlarge underground, attached to runners from the plant. It is like digging for buried treasure and discovering gold – Yukon Golds to be exact. This year, I planted both yellow and the traditional red potatoes.
Every year, at our table, the first potatoes are made into Butter and Dilled Potatoes. You will find the recipe below. These are wonderful with roast beef or roast pork or roast chicken and are so fast and easy. They make wonderful leftovers too, because the flavors really permeate the potatoes after sitting in the frig. And if you are watching your cholesterol, I have included how to make them safely and you’ll never know the difference!! Thanks to the Irish for these nutritious tubers!!
Butter and Dilled Potatoes
5 large New Potatoes cut into large chunks
2 tbsp real butter (or 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil or canola oil + 1 tbsp Molly McButter for cholesterol watchers)
2-3 large sprigs of fresh dill or 1 1/2 tbsp dried dill weed
Salt to taste
In a large saucepan, cover potatoes with water and add butter, dill and salt. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to cook until potatoes are tender. Continue to cook until fluid is reduced by half. Serve while hot.