It's baseball time!
My buddy and I had tickets to the Oakland A's for almost twenty years.
When you live below the equator, the peanut harvest coincides with the opening of the season.
In America they are harvested in the fall and then prepared for Spring Training.
In Zambia we get them fresh from the earth in anticipation of the first pitch.
Baseball must be huge here because everyone grows a few.
You can often find them in the maize along with squash and other delectibles.
It was in this village that a lady showed us how they were grown.
They really don't grow on the roots as I had always thought but the flower changes and drops on a small vine to the ground where it developes a peanut under the earth.
You can buy peanuts everywhere, now it is baseball season.
The problem I had getting ready for the opening pitch was that these ground nuts were RAW.
Really moist, damp, and with sort of a musty flavor. Now I know what a real "goober pea" is.
However, I needed peanuts so I checked out how to prepare them.
It turns out there are two basic ways - boil or roast.
You might want to dry them out in the sun a while first though.
You then have the option of shelling them, or not.
I chose to roast them in an oven on a cookie sheet in the shell.
They turned out good, not great.
I think I will boil them in salty water next time.
Obviously shelled and roasted with salt or honey would be best but I love to shell them when the action gets tense and just toss the shells on the floor of the stadium, which drives Kristi nuts.
My bowl was ready, and I knew enough to get another bowl for shells. I was ready to watch baseball.
Well guess what? There is soccer and golf on Zambia TV but no BASEBALL!
I have never seen a bat or a baseball in the streets even. What's with that?
This is crazy - why do they grow all these peanuts?