Well, the end of July means a more exciting harvest. The basil is getting bushy, the first little tomatoes are starting to turn orange then red, there are even some cayenne peppers starting to peek out from underneath old blossoms. Yep, the hour of fruits is upon us! (Now, people tend to think of tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, and beans as vegetables. And sure, they are. But as far as plant anatomy goes, the part we're eating is the fruit of the plant, the part with the seeds in it.)
Now is the time where we get to make more interesting dishes with the harvest. Don't get me wrong, I love salads, but after 2 months of eating giant salads almost every day, I'm ready for a bit of a break. Yesterday I made pesto with fresh basil and parsley from the garden, as well as some from our organic family farmer. I modified a great recipe for 3-basil pesto from epicurious.com to include 5 types of basil in total. I have some great lemon basil plants whose seeds were a gift from friends. (Alyssa and Chris, it is as yummy as the name sounds!) I also added some purple basil and Thai basil for extra flavor dimensions. Blend together with Romano cheese, garlic, pine nuts, and a splash of olive oil and enjoy! Pesto apparently freezes really well, so take advantage of bushels that you may be growing yourself or that are selling at your local farmers' market and stock up for the winter!