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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Slow on the Upswing, Hope in the Wind and the Recipe

I am not much good in hot, humid weather.  Everything droops and drips - it's not pretty.  My energy level plummets and the best I can hope for are little spurts of activity spurred by pure panic.  Of all the large items on The List for the weekend, only one - and not completely - got done.  I had to placate my guilty conscience with a smattering of small things checked off.  Sea Witch re-hung (for the fifteenth time) on my bathroom wall.  Check.  Dig up thistles before they flower and invade.  Check.  Shovel out the hoop house.  Check-ish.  Staple chicken wire to the bottom of the Duck Huts before they get in there and lay their eggs.  Well....


After cursing and cussing and shooing my "helpers", I managed to get the perimeter of both Duck Huts covered in chicken wire.  I had spent too much time on my hands and knees, fishing out the odd duck egg.  As I finished and walked away, smugly thinking I had fixed their little red wagon,
I glanced back and...  I tore up one corner of the outer hut and fished out a bucketful of eggs.  I was not quite fast enough.


I also hung my prayer flags on the pergola.  I have had them for years and years, and had been waiting for the right place and time.  It might not be totally correct, but I am hoping that intent counts.  As I watch them flutter to and fro, I am filled with hope that the "to" will direct some peace to my heart, home and life, while "fro" will send peace, love and acceptance out into the world.  Both parties are in need.




I also rassled with my hops vine, trying to tame the beast to work its way across the pergola.  It seems to be intent on taking over the deck and everything on it.


The one big job was weeding the garden.  I am making headway, but no way near the finish.  Of course, there IS no finish when it comes to weeding, is there?  I have had to replant the basil - almost a month of rain and cold temps made my plants a sorry lot.  The warmer weather has really boosted the squash, while the cukes are rather static.  Bean germination was so-so.  My sweetpeas did not germinate at all.  Round two on beet-planting resulted in about 10 seeds germinating - they will have to be replanted.  The onions, garlic and shallots are doing well.  As are the potatoes, which need a second tire and filling-in.  Dahlias that I planted in the front were very disappointing.


And, to top off the 90% humidity of the weekend, I had a neighbor over for dinner and used the oven most of the day.  What was I thinking?  I made a quiche and roasted asparagus, as well as ... you guessed it ... spoon bread!




Here is the recipe:


From Cooking Free, by Carol Fenster


2 large eggs
1 cup plain yogurt or 3/4 cup 2% milk (any kind - soy, cow, almond)
1/2 cup finely chopped onions
2 T canola oil
1 can (4 oz) diced green chilies (optional)
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
1tsp baking powder
1 tsp garlic salt
1 cup corn kernels (frozen is fine)
1 cup shredded low-fat cheddar cheese (cow or soy)




Preheat oven to 350*.  Great 9" cast iron skillet or 9" round or square non-stick pan.  Beat eggs with whisk in large bowl.  Add yogurt or milk, onion, oil, and chilies and mix well.  in another bowl, combine cornmeal, baking powder, and garlic salt.  Add to egg mixture.  Stir in corn and 1/2 cup of cheddar.  (She notes here that, if using soy cheese, mix the full cup into the batter.)  Batter will be soft.  Pour into prepared pan.  Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup (cow) cheese on top and bake 40-50 minutes until top is golden brown.


*Disclaimer : so far, as fruit-fly-focused as I am, I have a) put three eggs in; b) put 1 cup of cow milk in; c) upped the onions; d) put 3 T of oil in; e) put chopped scallions in because the tin I thought was chilies was, indeed, chipotle in adobe sauce.  I also added way more cheese.  In every instance, it turned out only slightly different and every bit as tasty - it's bomb-proof!


Lovey contemplating getting
her paws muddy.  She passed.





36 comments:

  1. I need some green chilies and yellow cornmeal the next time I go grocery shopping and then this will be made in our household. Thanks!

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    1. It was awfully good with scallions, too. But I am definitely a green chili girl. Hope you like it as much as I do!

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  2. You've really been busy!! I'll be sure to try the spoon bread.
    Is Love moving to a new home soon? Wasn't there a big, new dog a few months back... Bertie or Bernie? Is he still there?

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    1. After consulting with some animal (dog) behaviorists and specialists - and with my best source of all things dog-related (Jane) - we have reached the conclusion that the problem lies with Bertie (aka The Yam) and not Lovey. Lovey will be staying with me and Bertie will be an only dog for my friend, Cynthia, at some point soon.

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  3. Hmm; I have all the ingredients. I might just have to see if that spoon bread is as good as you say. Poor Lovey; she doesn't understand....

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    1. You will love it, Michelle! Yes, things have been stood on their heads in our house. I am finally coming to grips with the fact that dogs are...well, dogs. It is not their fault. It was mine.

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    2. That's a hard truth (that dogs will be dogs; NOT the fault being yours), but I'm thankful you're coming to terms with it. I had a hard time believing it was Lovey, given her history with the Pepperoni; Bertie makes more sense. And dachshunds aren't known for their humility, diplomacy, or tact; we've had three. Still a heartbreak....

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    3. Yes, I have been apologizing to Lovey for stereotyping her. Something that I thought I was above - apparently not. Bertie was the unknown. He is an endearing fellow, but definitely needs to live with no small dogs or cats. I doubt I will ever get over TP's loss.

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  4. Love your pergola. Now I have to look up 'hops vine'.

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    1. Be careful of hops vines! This giant started with one innocent-looking little sprig!

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  5. i love spoon bread! we finally have a cooler day today, thank you jesus. i HATE hot weather! how is lovey doing? is she still being re-homed?

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    1. I am with you, sister. I am NOT a fan of anything over 60 and humid. At. All. Lovey will be staying and Bertie will be rehomed to my friend.

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  6. I have all the ingredients too! Keeping those pretty paws white is obviously of great importance. I have a horse like that too. He is particular about getting mud on his pretty 4 high whites. Good luck to the Yam, are we talking two girls not liking each other?.

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    1. No, the Yam is male and Lovey is female and they get along fine. It is a matter of the Yam having a prey drive that was not evident, but has, unfortunately, come to light.

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    2. As a terrier owner, we understand prey drive...
      Glad the Yam has another great home.

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  7. In spite of the heat, it sounds like you've accomplished a lot! Heat gets me too. Luckily, we have good AC and it's been cooling down just enough at night to get a tiny bit done in the yard very early in the morning. Although, a big heat wave has started and we may be just staying in for a while. I like what you said about the bringing and sending good things as they wave to and fro. That's cool! Stay cool and have a wonderful day! :-)

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    1. You really do have the heat! The only thing that would save me in your neck of the woods is that it tends to be dry heat. It's the humidity that does me in.

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  8. I love seeing prayer flags flapping in the wind, especially when they're still new and colourful! Thanks for that spoon bread recipe -- I'm going to try it the next time I have a craving for cornbread.

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    1. I do, too. I love the sound they make. I just saw a documentary of the Buddha and there was a holy place that was just covered with them.

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  9. Awww sweet Lovey :) Your pergola looks great with the flags. I have to brag slightly...I don't have much weeding to do, because my plants are all in containers, but I am noticing a few little buggers that need eradicating. I have NO complaints now that I'm left-thumb-less!!! I made a ham and cheese quiche today! Great minds think alike! :)))

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    1. You can't beat containers for making gardening actually enjoyable! You have done so much with your little plot, Rain!

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  10. I love living in the "high desert"! It's a DRY heat. I've always had prayer flags hanging in my garden. I was going to pick up some this week actually! Great minds think alike. I think of all the blessings blowing around :) Peaceful~~~

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    1. I can take dry heat over humidity, but rather skip the heat completely. Or just have two weeks of heat. I think of the blessings every time I hear the wind flapping them around. It makes me feel better.

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  11. Thanks for posting the spoon bread recipe. I have all the ingredients except the canned green chiles, but I have a couple of fresh jalapeño peppers that'll give it a nice bite. If I weren't too hungry to wait while it cooks, I'd try it tonight!

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    1. Delicious! Both plain, and with maple syrup and blueberries on top.

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    2. Oooh, that sounds delicious! I need to use up a few blueberries before the new season hits!

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  12. Susan, Your pergola & deck look so inviting, love the prayer flags. Spoon bread .... ahhh one of my favorite things. I like it with scallions instead of the chilis. Oh & I ALWAYS add more cheese than a (any) recipe calls for.

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    1. Cheese makes everything better. And LOTS of cheese makes it wonderful! I have to say that I like the scallions best, too.

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  13. The pergola has given your deck area such a different look. Are you happy with it? I like it from the pictures. Our ducks continue to lay eggs, too, but mostly in the nest boxes in the chicken house!

    Hoping you can get the dog situation resolved soon. Such emotional upheaval to go through. Hugs to you, my friend.

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    1. I love it. It's like a room with lots of light. I am going to be making a shade to hang on the southern side of it, so that I can block some of the harsher late afternoon light. I'm getting to a better place with the dogs - insofar as it's less stressful on an hourly basis. It is not their fault, it's mine. And they are good dogs, other than this.

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  14. Never heard of spoon bread before. Looks delicious!

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    1. If you can get your hands on the ingredients, I would highly recommend it. It's season-less, so I will be enjoying it year-round.

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  15. Susan,

    Now that's a recipe I need to try.....you've added green chiles....one of our favorite!!!

    Muddy paws is not a good thing. Glad to see Lovey decided not to walk through the mud.

    Hugs,
    Sandy

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  16. And you do serve it by itself or as a side dish?

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