fresh cut rhubarb from my benriner: beloved Japanese mandolin slicer – ooh, so sharp!
for months now, we have been embroiled in what amounts to political gossip – daily kernels of news, amplified many times over their individual value – little satisfaction to be obtained. time to turn away from all of the voices and the devices for creative pursuits and thinking that is less anxiety making, more fruitful in a widened perspective...
we saw a spring riot of colors everywhere, rejoiced in the rain that alleviated the drought somewhat, and though we agonize over the fires burning, we are thankful for bountiful choices in produce. my thoughts turn once again to benrining.
do you know how simple it is to make up a store of dried bits, with the bonus of wonderful syrups to use? young ginger, fresh rhubarb and kumquats, then the stone fruits, to be dried and maybe caramelized as crunchy additions to bonbons: put this climate change surfeit of sun to work for you!
citrus is easy, and air drying is quick: simply use your favorite zester - i favor a microplane stick type, as I like mine to be fine, with no pith - arrange the zest in a single, open layer on a parchment covered tray or cookie sheet, and leave in open air (cover with netting if insects are present)
you can use the zests in so many ways. i love the flowery aspect of lemons - always delight in the transformation a lemon slice makes in a glass of water, and how it enlivens anything else...likewise I find adding citrus to the mix when caramelizing cacao nibs gives them a taste a little like wine...
and remember to always save the liquid and sugar you have left over:
precious gifts, pleasure to come...