Sunday, July 20 (continued)
MaryJane and I cook our dinner, a BakeOver, in the Plum Pit. We
use fresh organic vegetables, sautéed in a little olive oil.
A MaryJane BakeOver is a pie, sort-of, made in a wok-style pan.
You sauté the veggies (savory) or fruit (dessert) and other
filling ingredients, then take a crust made with one of MaryJanes
own mixes and plop it on top. Bake it and flop it upside down on
a platter. Cut it like a pie. Delicious. Beautiful. Easy.
After dinner, we walk down the road past the gardens, wildflowers
and berry bushes, and all the way to the edge of the farm. Its
splendid, looking around, all sides with rolling wheat-covered hills
punctuated by majestic Ponderosa pines. At night the door stays
open; the screen latched to keep raccoons out. Windows let the night
air breeze through. There are no smells of cars, no sounds of roads,
no roaring of air conditioners, no sounds of neighbors. I dont
think I move an inch all night.
Monday, July 21
Today the sun rose at 4:30 a.m. It was glorious. Light beamed from
the sky- light immediately over my head. Clearly, MaryJane wants
her guests to feel exactly as if they are sleeping with nature under
the open sky. Fantastic.
MaryJanes instructions were clear. Meet her at 6:30 am for
breakfast in the Plum Pit. Get up as early as I want and shower
in the basement.
MaryJane e-mailed me before I came that if I want to learn to garden,
I need to learn to cook. But before we cook, we need ingredients,
so its berry-picking time on the farm this morning. MaryJane
is making my picking bucket, an old plastic jug that she cut off
to form a bowl with holes in each side at the top. She likes to
use both hands to pick raspberries, and thats why she threads
a cloth neck-strap through the holes.
One thing is obvious: MaryJane likes raspberries. She leads me
past dozens of raspberry bushes, around the Plum Pit, behind the
basement and in the garden. She takes care to show me just how to
tell which ones are ripe. Theyre the darker red, not the bright
red raspberries. The ripe ones are sweeter and will go better in
our breakfast BakeOver.