In Praise of Small Things

Why is it that small things seem especially perfect? That perfectly ordinary things, once miniaturized, seem like marvels? Take these potatoes found at the Market last week:

They were so small that, when I added them to curried chicken later in the week, I didn't even have to cut them in chunks. In they went, just like that.

Or take the golden raspberries I came upon, while walking through a strip mall parking lot in Federal Way:

 

 Parking lot raspberries are especially sweet--must be all that radiating pavement

Parking lot raspberries are especially sweet--must be all that radiating pavement

Let me say that again: I was walking through a parking lot, carrying my Starbucks iced tea and sandwiches, and I spotted these. They looked like raspberries, but wouldn't it be embarrassing if they weren't, and I accidentally poisoned myself and keeled over on the asphalt? But I couldn't resist the possibility of free food. So I picked one and nibbled one little bump of it and waited to die. When it didn't happen, I tentatively ate more little bumps of it. Then I finished the whole berry. Still nothing.

So I picked about two dozen, ate a dozen on the spot, and squeezed the rest into one compartment of my Starbucks plastic bento box. I am happy to report that both I and my children are still alive. They really were raspberries. And they really were there for the taking. And they really were tasty. I'll be back in Federal Way on Thursday and plan to bring an empty container and pick more.

The berries beat the other not-so-small thing we found in Federal Way, while strolling through the Hylebos Wetlands Park:

 

 (with my daughter's foot thrown in, to show the scale of the beast)

(with my daughter's foot thrown in, to show the scale of the beast)

See what I mean about smaller is better? Oversized slugs are nightmares come to life.

Our Market is full of tiny treasures. Not just potatoes or ladybugs...

 

...or tiny bees doing their work by jars of Cascade Honey. I've seen tiny pies. I've seen delicate Persian Cucumbers (only available for a few weeks), with their sweeter flavor and thinner skin. I've seen tiny strawberries and baby greens. Food so darling you just have to eat it.

Get out to the Market this week and start your collection of miniatures. When it comes to food, bigger isn't usually better!