Sunday, December 14, 2008

Italian chicory & the Almafi Coast

We saw Sea Kale (Crambe maritima) along the coastal paths today, at least I think it was sea kale. A vegetable that I've seen only in Thomas Jefferson's vegetable garden at Monticello and in Old Salem, NC, it's a European native that looks like a very large leafy kale.

Of equal interest has been all the varieties of Italian chicory. I grow several (the groundhogs like them), and their bitter flavor makes an agreeable counterpoint to blander greens.

Bundles were displayed at a fruit and vegetable market in an Amalfi Coast town (Vietri del Mare); the grocer laughed when she saw my gardening companion taking a photo.

I'd look quite at home strolling here if it wasn't for my Keens!

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