Slow painting

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

Seeds of Italy

My daughter is in France at the moment and experiencing the delights of French home cooking for the first time. She's also having some lunches in school with her exchange partner. Looking at the school lunch menu for the week I was struck by the fact that each day had its own salad - not just 'green salad', but a proper salad dish: tomato salad, mushrooms a la Greque, salad of green beans, lettuce and Emmenthal salad. I also noticed rabbit on the menu. No tripe, tho. When I was an assistante in a French school in the 1980's tripe was a favourite school lunch dish...favourite of everyone but me, that is.

These salads made me think nostalgically of French and Italian lettuce varieties, and to scratch that itch and introduce a bit of variety into the Scottish summer salad I ordered some seeds from Seeds of Italy. They sent me an email confirming my order and apologising for a likely delay in delivery. Apparently they're so busy just now that they're having difficulty meeting their normal delivery times of between 3 to 14 working days. I settled down to wait - but the order arrived within 3 days. Now I'm even more impressed by them, over and above their company policy of all sitting down to a proper lunch together, closing business when Italy is playing football, and re-using all packaging and paper.

I hope we can do the seeds justice. Lettuces have never been very successful at the allotment. Perhaps I should be lavishing more care, i.e. water, on them. We'll see what happens with

Lattuga Testa di Burro d'Inverno
Lattuga Quattro Stagioni
Lattuga Romana Biondi
Swiss Chard Bionda di Lione
and the very sweet green pea Piccolo Provenzale

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