That Satisfying Time
Things don’t get much better than this! Late winter in San Francisco feels like our own private gift – crisp sunny days stretch for weeks at a time and so many native, and other water-wise, plants set out beautiful blooms. Rather than digging ourselves out of snowdrifts, we are growing brassicas and alliums, herbs and lemons.
This is also a great time of year to be out in the garden. The winds of June haven’t picked up yet and the fog is still a couple months off. As we get the last of the native plantings in the ground, now is a great time to assess space in our backyards, start seeds in the greenhouse and plan for the upcoming year. I find there are few things more satisfying than a productive day in my garden and one of my most favorite moments in life is the first time I sit down at the end of the day to look around at all the progress I’ve made. I pull up a seat at the long farmhouse table we built last year, drink something refreshing, and take it all in. I imagine what plants will look like once they’ve grown a bit and begun to fill out the space. The new mulch always cleans things up and does such good things to the soil health and I love the newly tidy vines along the fence.
This lime, grapefruit ginger juice is exactly what I want to be drinking this time of year in the late afternoon breeze. It is a full celebration of citrus season, and is so adaptable – I think it’s equally delicious with blood oranges and lemon. I love Heidi’s suggestion of adding sparkling water to make it a bit more festive, and to cut the sweetness a bit.
Lime, Grapefruit and Ginger Juice
Heidi Swanson, 101cookbooks.com
3 tablespoons natural cane sugar
2 tablespoons ginger, peeled then grated
1 cup / 240 ml water
very scant 1/2 cup fresh lime juice(aprox. 2 juicy limes)
1 1/3 cups (aprox. 2 juicy grapefruits)
In a small saucepan, over medium heat, stir together the sugar, ginger, and water, making like a simple syrup. Simmer for 5 minutes, transfer to a glass bowl or cup, and place in the freezer for a few minutes to cool.
After the syrup is cool, strain the mixture into a pitcher along with the lime and grapefruit juices. Depending on how your like your citrus, you can either strain the juices or leave them as is (pulpy). Stir and taste, adding more sugar if you want. Serve straight in a tiny chilled glass with ice or add sparkling water.
Makes about 2 cups.