Libby Morgan's garden is one of my favourite places in Orange. With incredible views across the Nashdale Valley, she and husband Ken have terraced, tamed and cultivated their few acres into a really beautiful and productive space. Its main purpose is to produce the organic garlic sold under the Morgan's Morganics label; but with her horticulture background and love of growing and sharing great produce, Libby's garden also produces a year-round harvest of organic vegetables and herbs.We visited late last year and loved the place so much, asked Libby if we could pop up today and pilfer her garden again.
Generous as always, Libby sent Alice and I home with a big bag of yellow and purple runner beans, grey zucchini and of course, garlic. On her suggestion, all of the above (except for the zucchini which we are saving for tomorrow), made their way into the above dish, recipe follows below.
Beans with garlic, lemon and hazelnutsThis recipe is an adaptation of one given us today by Libby. It really was delicious and the dressing would be great with pretty much any fresh vegetable, from asparagus to lightly steamed summer squash and zucchini. Serves 2.
2 handfuls fresh runner beans (we used yellow and purple)
2 cloves garlic, peeled (Morganic preferably!)
1 tsp sea salt
Zest and juice of one lemon
3 tbsp best extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup hazlenuts, toasted (we love Fourjay Farms hazlenuts)
Trim the beans and throw into a pot of boiling water for a few minutes. Drain and run under cold water for a while (this will help crisp them up and keep their colour bright and beautiful). Meanwhile, crush the hazlenuts in a mortar and pestle (or chop with a sharp knife) and set aside. Place the garlic in salt in the mortar and pestle and crush until you have a paste, add the olive oil and lemon juice and zest and pound again until you have a smooth sauce.
Toss this with the beans and then scatter with the hazlenuts. serve as a side-dish or on it's own or maybe with some warm bread on the side.
From December through to April, Morganics garlic can be purchased at the Orange Farmers Market (on the second Saturday of the month), M&J's Butchers, Totally Local, Sydney's weekly Everleigh markets, Northside and French's Forest markets.