There is nothing more satisfying and rewarding than watching everything outside come back to life. The daffodils, tulips and flowering trees signal that the warmer weather is on the way.
Our outdoor activities are in gear with track and baseball. Last weekend we got the grill set up for another season of cooking on the patio.
We use the grill for so many dishes like pizza, with a crushed tomato sauce and torn bits of mozzarella, and hamburgers with melted American cheese.
The herb garden is slowly coming back and these are the plants that help add flavor to everything we have on the outdoor dining table in the warm-weather season.
The pizza we make on the grill is just a little better when we add some oregano and basil leaves when the pizza is near the end of cooking time and they melt with the tomato sauce and soft cheese.
The chives are making their way through the soil and they always add a nice mild onion flavor to the aioli we make for the French fries we have with our burgers from the grill.
The dipping sauce is equal parts mayonnaise and ketchup with a pinch of Kosher salt and a generous helping of chopped chives.
Hamburgers and fries with aioli is the perfect dinner for dining outside once the weather is warm and the scent of blooming flowers and trees is in the air.
We are getting ready to move the herbs we brought inside for the winter season back to the garden outside. This has to be a gradual process as the plants need to adjust to temperatures outside.
If you leave the plants overnight at this time of year, after their winter inside, you can shock the potted herbs. They need a few hours a day outside in the morning and afternoon sun.
The date for when the danger of a frost is behind us is in our area in New York is considered to be Mother’s Day.
The herbs that stayed outside in the garden are on a different cycle as they were dormant in the cold-weather season.
Having fresh herbs ready to grab at any moment brings out the flavor in your food. That’s why we make the effort to pot some up in the fall to get us through the winter season.
You know you are in for the outdoor season when you catch the scent of basil on a warm breeze.
For some ideas with using lemons in your cooking take a look at my post at Parade where you can see how to make a lemon oil from The Chew’s Carla Hall.
We are ready for outdoor dining and some good conversation and laughs.