Tropical Treasure

Last night my friend Kendall came over for a local foods dinner. We had quite a feast: roasted garlic and kale soup, CSA pork chops brined in a maple-juniper mixture, kraut and apple salad, spicebush ice cream. The ice cream was served with a few chunks of pineapple. Yes, pineapple. Kendall decided to take advantage of my “gift exemption” and surprise me with a bag of imported tropical goodies that she knew I hadn’t tasted much of since starting The 250. Her gift included pineapple chunks, a mango, a lime, and kumquats.

Kendall’s citrus gift

The juicy burst of pineapple in my mouth was a treat not so much because it was pineapple but because it was a fresh fruit in winter (that wasn’t yet another apple). I’ll be eating the pineapple and the mango for breakfast for the next couple of days, and I’ll figure out something to do with the kumquats. But what really has me perplexed is what to do with the lime.

A singular and, to a Northeast locavore, exotic treasure. One lime. I used to take limes for granted, using them in tortilla lime soup, Thai recipes, and salsa without much thought. But now I am like those 19th century children who thought getting an orange in their Christmas stocking was just the best gift ever. It’s a side effect of The 250 that I have a heightened sense of appreciation for non-local goods, and a cautious respect for the many costs of getting them here. I hope that when The 250-Mile Diet year is over I keep that acute awareness. It’s not that I will never again eat an orange or a lime or a banana or a pineapple, but I don’t ever want to consider them everyday foods. Not unless I move to a much warmer climate.

Meanwhile, Kendall’s lime sits on my kitchen table while I try to think of something suitably celebratory to do with it. It should be featured, not just added to the mix of whatever I cook. And since it is perishable, I don’t have forever to make my decision. Any suggestions?

Not sure what this is about? Read Getting Ready for the 250-Mile Diet and The Rules

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3 responses to “Tropical Treasure”

  1. Miriam says:

    Limeade, or if you have any distilled liquor from before your diet year, a cocktail based on lime juice. Daiquiri, vodka and lime syrup, caipirinha, tequilah. Preserve the peel in sugar for flavoring desserts. Sound good?

    Hic.

  2. acmeplant says:

    Normally I’d suggest a mojito (and I’m sure you have mint in your yard) but the rest of the ingredients are probably out of reach. So how about a dessert, maybe a local version of key lime pudding/pie?

  3. ledameredith says:

    LOL…a few other comments I got offline also suggested cocktails, and I won’t say I hadn’t already had that thought! But alas, no hard spirits left in the abode, and I can’t think of a lime beverage to make with the local wines. I like the dessert ideas though, so I think I’ll head in that direction…

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