Some of the planning and executing gardeners for this intown plot are from The Edge or the Sieber Hotel.
Today, Gary from Palo Duro was out going over the contents of the gardens at Urban Neighbors he had rolled down to the gardens from his apartment nearby. Between petting dogs like the rescue dog Jasper the friendly Dachshund Gary was sharing potential use for what he could identify as he tooled around the growing beds in his wheelchair. When Gary started spouting impromptu recipes, he wanted to hear some in return. Gardening is for him, as for others a way to keep normalcy and relaxation in life through the routines of planting and watching things grow and enjoying fresh fare.
Once the Urban Neighbors donated plot for the community garden was established, many neighbors couldn’t wait to dig in. Just East of Brown’s Bakery, on 11th Street in Oklahoma City’s Midtown and just North of the residences of Palo Duro it sits on a slight rise making it a great spot from which to also watch people. It has all kinds of visitors at all hours of the day and anyone who wishes to, besides just the immediate neighbors comes to love Mother Earth.
Urban Neighbors is accompanied by two precious built in things which were part of the parcels of land donated. One a large and small dog run, the other running water for the garden and pet visitors.
Gary today, shared an impromptu recipe which surprisingly enough has some culinary sibs online. Fennel is apparently a highly nutritious root vegetable, besides being known for it’s qualities as an herb, or seeds as a spice.
Palo Duro Gary’s Fantastic Fennel
In a large cast iron skillet place
1 cup chopped bacon or ham and cook until browned. Remove the meat and drain grease. Reserve both.
add to the drained pan
1 medium purple onion thinly sliced and brown.
Add 3-6 cups Fennel tops chopped
1-2 Fennel bulbs if available, cubed
Return the meat to the pan, and stir until the fennel begins to wilt
Add one can of drained and rinsed red kidney beans
Simmer to desired done-ness. Gary said that this can be cooked like collard greens, but that was probably more a reference to the style of the dish, versus the cooking time. Gary said this is sort of a Southern US/California dish.
Probably cooking until heated through is sufficient.
Add black pepper to taste.
Serve over wild rice, brown rice or stone ground hot cornbread.
Garnish with finely chopped green pepper or jalepenos and some of the cooking fat if desired.
Serves 2-3 generously.