Fall may be pumpkin season around the country, but here in Florida it is key lime season. My tree is drooping from the weight of so many limes. While others are baking pumpkin bread, molasses cookies, and snickerdoodles, I’m trying to decide what to do with all these tart and tiny fruits.
Key lime pie is obvious—and delicious! But sometimes I feel like Forrest Gump’s friend Bubba as I dream up ideas: key lime cake, key lime chicken, margaritas, key lime white chocolates, key lime cookies, margaritas, key lime frozen yogurt, key lime iced tea, key lime shrimp, margaritas, key lime salsa, key lime cupcakes, key lime mahi—did I mention margaritas?
Last weekend I harvested a basket of the beauties. I was just about done when a little face popped out through the leaves. There was Margarita, the red rat snake who resides in the lime tree. She wasn’t happy that I was disturbing her, but she tolerated the tree shaking as I picked the limes. She even let me snap a few photos showing off her vivid colors. A tiny tree frog hopped from leaf to leaf, likely saved from becoming a snake-sized morsel by my interference. Margarita finally tired of the photo shoot, plopped on the ground with a loud “thump,” and slithered into the saw palmetto. I imagined her muttering under her breath as she retreated.
So it’s Lime Time. While other states are enjoying crisp weather, colorful leaves, and pumpkins, I’m swimming in the pool and looking at a bushel of key limes. One thing is certain—I will never suffer from scurvy.