"My salad days, / When I was green in judgment..."
So reflects Shakespeare's Cleopatra, in reference to the affair she had with Julius Caesar when she was silly and young.
Honestly, regrettable young love isn't what comes to my mind when I think of the phrase "Salad Days." For me, the reference best suits these weeks in May every year when gardens produce the most tender, sweet greens of the whole growing season.
A gift of young butter lettuce from our friend Dave Couch's garden inspired this evening's special family supper. During the pandemic we have said farewell to buffets and salad bars, so I decided to create a salad bar experience for everyone.
It took a full hour of prep, as I chopped and matchsticked and spun all of the crisp fresh veggies I could find, emptying a whole refrigerator drawer of produce in the process. The four of us have widely divergent tastes in salad, so the array allowed for creative customization. Carl and I basically ended up with bowls overflowing with everything, including greens, veggies, pickles and olives, cheeses, pasta salad, boiled eggs...while our eighteen-year-old dumped a pile of crumbled bacon onto a mound of cold iceberg lettuce and declared it the best salad ever.
In a green mood, I paired my own supper salad with a bright refreshing cocktail of tequila blanco and lime.
Cheers to variety, the bounty of spring gardens, and the spice of variety in our salad days! May there be many more to come.