This week I’m vacationing with the inlaws and outlaws at their farmhouse in Maine. It’s a wonderful old place with a barn and two big gardens that are usually in full swing by now, overflowing with giant squashes and cucumbers, unruly arugula, jalapenos, feathery stalks of dill, sunflowers. But it’s been torrentially rainy this summer and there’s hardly any squash right now, so don’t worry about locking your car. In fact, the only abundant crop at the moment is cabbage.

“I’m hoping you brought your recipes,” my father-in-law Jim said, chuckling. He’s one of about five folks who read the blog loyally.

Jim chided me about a prior post on turnips, told me I’d forgotten the simplest preparation of them all. He then proceeded to put on a clinic, pulling a few uncharacteristically small, bumpy turnips from the soil and shaving them down with the mandolin. He passed the crisp, bitter wafers alongside a little ramekin of soy sauce at cocktail hour and they were just right with the dark salty dressing. The uber-simple prep meant the cook was never really missing from the action.

Meantime, if you’ve got a favorite way to prepare cabbage, we’d love to hear about it.