“Blue pencils, blue noses, blue movies, laws, blue legs and stockings… the rare blue dahlia like that blue moon shrewd things happen only once in.”
We may be surprised to find that the book is not about sadness, except in the way that all art circles back to sadness, which is the being it’s born of. In the end blue is about desire, but desire on the page, the stringing together of words, the, forgive me, the love of language.
So we get underway with today’s list, our string of green things: green apples, greenbacks, green beans; the green of the party, of the river, of the day, of wanness and bruising and the first breath of spring.
The green of March, of poverty and in-between weather, and so the green of envy. Sea green. Rawness is green, like the green of just-slaughtered meat. The green of sleeping trees we like to call colorless but are not, in fact. The green sheen of boiled brisket, sausage casings, the green of spoil. Wet cement is called green, and all things that have yet to harden: unfired pottery, unset mortar, unsintered metals, untempered steel, chocolate, children. Mean green. Keen green.
The green of Ghaddafi’s flag, which is all green. Also the greens of Italy and Brazil and Arabia.
Also the green of Ireland.
The green of all these things, yes, but the green of hunger? Green is hard to love; green is vegetables. Green is lettuce, the leaves of beets and celery and radishes, cabbage, kale, cress. Green is the color we don’t want our food to turn, the color we don’t want our food turning us.
But when there’s also the green of avocados, the green of artichokes, we arrive at last at the green of mouth water, the green of wanting.
Today we hew to a theme, reader. You’d be forgiven for simmering corned beef tonight, for boiling cabbage and potatoes, roasting lamb. We take our celebrations where we can get them. On Saturday I saw the river turn green. I drank green drinks. But for now, for tonight, I’m in a soberer mood. I’m eating a dinner of vegetables, a haphazard dinner. Things reheated, things thrown together. I usually green in despair at the thought. But sometimes vegetables can feel, must feel, as much a luxury as brisket, so long as they’re the right vegetables, and these are.
Recipe from Saveur
- 4 globe artichokes, stemmed
- 1 cup olive oil
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 1/2 tbsp. dried oregano
- 2 tsp crushed red chile flakes
- 8 cloves garlic, pulverized
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
Heat oven to 500 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together oil, wine, oregano, chile flakes, garlic, and salt and pepper; set aside.
Cut 1″ off top of each artichoke and gently pull leaves apart to open the artichokes.
Place them, standing up on their bases, in a cast iron pan or small roasting pan. Pour oil mixture over each artichoke, making sure it reaches between leaves.
Tent with aluminum foil, and bake for 45 minutes. Uncover, and bake, basting often with juices, until browned and tender, about 15 minutes more. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving warm with pan juices and a wedge of lemon.
- 2 ripe Haas avocados
- 1 roma tomato, seeded and diced
- 1 bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup onions, diced
- 1-2 cloves garlic (not pictured)
- 2-3 tbsp lemon or lime juice
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
Half avocados and remove seed. Gently scoop avocado flesh into a medium bowl. i
Add tomatoes, cilantro, onions, garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Mash roughly with a fork. Check seasoning; adjust salt and acid if necessary. Enjoy immediately.