Monday, August 5, 2013

Dear Diary,

I bet you can't guess what I had for breakfast this morning.  Go on - try!  Nope, not yogurt and granola.  Not a nice cool smoothie, either.  I oatmeal and raisins!  Why?  Because it was 46-freakin degrees!

Yes, Dear Diary, we are, apparently, in a state of troughiness, according to the weather gurus.  While it was downright invigorating, I doubt it will do much for my plentiful, green tomatoes.  Bernisima loves this weather.  Does it mean that summer is over?  It was just a fast and furious, hot flash in the pan of the year?

Saturday was a tough day, Dear Diary.  It was Kay's Memorial Service and, although it was meant to bring closure through the celebration of her life (and what a life!), it didn't close things for me.  I know that these sharp, raw memories will soften with age, but Holy Crap (as Kay would say), it hurts like hell.  And it hurts LOTS of people like hell.  The celebration was perfect - a capella songs sung by her daughter and *daughters* - such beautiful voices in a beautiful, vaulted church.  Her son sang her a song, and her granddaughter played guitar and sang in an equally beautiful voice.  Kay's life was much about song and music, so it was perfect.  Her husband had written a poem to her that was so crammed full of pain and passion that it completely pushed me over the edge and did me in.  I missed the bonfire that night, as I fell into a deep, silent sleep that kept the phone from waking me.  Just as well.

And, Dear Diary, I am reading a book entitled:  The Seasons on Henry's Farm: a Year of Food and Life on a Sustainable Farm (how's that for a title?)  It is a wonderful book.  One of those books you never want to end.  I think I would have preferred "5 Years of Food and Life..."  Terra Brockman is an amazing writer.  (And a BIG thank you to Jenyfer for introducing this book into my life.)  It charged me right up and yesterday I decided to tackle the growing mound of Ronde Nice squash that was growing in my fridge and garden.  When I'm not quite sure what to do with some food item, I wander over to my Italian neighbor, Linda's and drop innocent hints.  Such as...."I've got these lovely round zucchinis and I am going to stuff them.  Hmmm.  With what, I wonder?"  My luck held, as her sister and mother are visiting - so the ensuing conversation went something like this:

L:  "Ricotta, spinach and onions"
AM:  "Nutmeg would be nice"
L:  "Garlic - don't forget the garlic"
Moma:  "Some nice breadcrumbs and a little Romano, too, sweetie."
L:  "A little EVO and tomato on top, I think."

By the time I left, I had a recipe zipping about in my noggin and I proceeded to adapt it (since I almost never have all the ingredients suggested.) and came up with this:

Into a food processor, put 3 large garlic cloves and a bunch of young, tender Swiss Chard (spinach would be wonderful, too.)  Process it quickly, dump in a bowl and mix a container of ricotta, one whole egg, lots of nutmeg, some Parmesan (didn't have Romano) cheese and blend well.  Cut four Ronde Nice squash in half and scoop out seeds and some of the flesh to make a bowl.  Spoon filling in squash bowls.  Combine bread crumbs (I use GF Panko crumbs) and more cheese (Parm) and sprinkle liberally on top.  Whiz together a large chopped tomato, a few sprigs of fresh basil and about 2T of EVO in the processor and drizzle across the top of the bowls. 

Bake in a 375 degree oven until crumbs are golden and squash is tender.  I baked mine about 30-35 mins.

And maybe you would know this, Dear Diary - are chocolate covered gummie bears considered part of your 5-a-day fruit requirement?  Would you get back to me on this?



Unknown said...

That sounds like a wonderful memorial. It does take time to come to grips with losing a loved one, but it never really ends. Time just softens things I think....

Janice Grinyer said...

hugs to (((you!)))... IDK if this helps, but i like to think of death here in this world as the beginning of a new journey somewhere else - and that we all catch up with each other on each journey, if its meant to be...:)

and we had fog today again. in Southeastern Montana where annual precipt is 18 inches including snow. We'd like to cut hay and usually need only 24 hours to dry... we only have ONE FIELD DONE so far!!!

and zuccini is like a life source of the world - one plant and it produces like a rabbit on IVF drugs...your recipe sounds delish !

Susan said...

LHB - I know you're right. It was good that we all were able to get together and celebrate such a special life.

Susan said...

FW - I tend to think the same thing. If nothing else, it's comforting. Fog? Have we all entered some parallel universe? I am both amazed and terrified by my zucchini plant. Yes, just one. It's as big as my car, fercryinoutloud.

LindaCO said...

I'm sorry for the tough day Saturday. Here's to good neighbors. :-)

Jenyfer Matthews said...

I haven't got any words to comfort you on your loss so I'm sending hugs.

Glad you are enjoying the book :)