It distinctly feels like warmer spring weather has arrived and with it daylight savings, and the promise of longer days. My crab apple tree seemed to blossom overnight and the fruiting Quince and Wisteria are not far behind. It means that soon the farmer's market will return to the Square on Tuesday nights. Oak Hill Farm will re-open soon at the barn on Highway 12, and summer weather can’t be far off. Spring is especially beautiful in the Sonoma Valley. The first thing that you notice and it is hard to miss, are the green hills everywhere. It is a time to savor before the rain stops and the hills turn a different shade.
For me, Spring-time is also a time for cleaning and re-grouping from all the time spent indoors. When I think back to my upbringing, I distinctly remember that we had storm windows that needed to be taken off every spring, cleaned and stored. Bedding was stripped and aired outside on clotheslines, windowsills wiped clean and windows opened to bring fresh air into the house. I was wondering if people still took the time to do any spring-cleaning anymore?
The last few weekends I have spent organizing my office into a workable space. I have taken the advice of Virginia Wolf and tried to give myself “a room of one's own.” My friend came over and helped me hang a large bulletin board, 6ft X 18" wide, running the length of my desk and file cabinet. It’s a long enough space for my children’s pictures, a calendar and other beautiful tidbits of inspiration.
After our move last year, I didn’t think I would ever get organized again. The boxes! But then, instead of looking at them like clutter, I began to think of it like little mini "shopping sprees" into the boxes to find necessities and treasures from my old office, like a wire basket that I used to keep my envelopes in, can now be used for something else, perhaps a place to keep new ideas for future writing topics.
My file cabinets are filling up with fresh ideas for new recipes and I know how they are filed now, separated by main dishes, appetizers, salads, desserts, and/or by mealtimes; breakfast, brunch lunch and dinner. Its now easy to find what I am looking for.
The arrival of Spring brings fresh new vegetables to market that we haven’t seen in a year, like Asparagus, Spring Leeks and Garlic, Artichokes, Fennel and Fava Beans, to name a few. This Risotto Recipe turns green when you add the Fava Bean Puree.
In my Early Spring Risotto Recipe, they compliment eachother and ring in the Spring.