Happy Monday! Read on for news of what I read and ate on my mini-vacation from writing TracyFood, as well as valuable lessons in what not to do in certain important food-related situations (including why this post is late).
Over the weekend I finished David Mas Masumoto’s Epitaph for a Peach: four seasons on my family farm. Next up is Second Nature: a gardener’s education by Michael Pollan, if I can keep it out of Peter’s hands long enough to get my read on. (The “trouble” began this morning at breakfast, when Peter opened the book to a random page and got all sucked in. “Is Michael Pollan always this good?” he asked. Uh-oh.)
On the cookbook front, last night I made Curried Apple-Ginger Soup with Golden Tofu Cubes from Jack Bishop’s A Year In a Vegetarian Kitchen, and it was delicious. Tomorrow I may turn the leftover soup into an entrÃ©e by making more tofu cubes and serving them on rice with the soup as a sauce. Moosewood Restaurant Simple Suppers also continues to please: we had Linguine With Fresh Herbs on Saturday, using among other things the oregano and chives I picked that morning at the Urban Farm. Yay! Also we picked up vegetable starts at this weekend’s Saturday Market: here’s a picture of Peter loading them into the bike trailer! And that brings us to the subject of my next quick update:
Yesterday I put in baby tomatoes and brussels sprouts starts, and discovered the first pole bean sproutlings! Yay! (Bush beans have been growing strong for more than a week despite freaky-cold nights.) Today I found lots more bean sprouts, and saw that the irises have finally come into bloom. Yay! This morning I was happy to see starts for some of the spaghetti squash and cucumbers I started inside weeks ago, but there’s a lesson for all of you: labels are good, especially on pots containing seeds from closely related plants that you were planning to put in separate beds to avoid cross-pollination. Ooops.
Cleaning Disaster Doom!
Speaking of “oops,” this morning’s mystery cucurbit discovery got me making plans to spend this evening after work in the garden again, but unfortunately I was welcomed home by a truly epic ant infestation in the kitchen, so I changed my plans to reflect more sponge-mopping and setting of ant baits (dangit — I really hate using poison in the kitchen but these little guys were so determined some of them plowed right through the cayenne I scattered to slow them down while I cleaned up their trails, so I reluctantly broke out the toxic weapons). Now here is where you can once again learn from my mistakes, gentle readers: if you move a piece of furniture to clean the floor beneath it, don’t leave a bunch of stuff on top of the aforementioned furniture, even if it isn’t prone to losing its wheels, like a certain movable butcher block kitchen counter of ours. Urgh. I stopped the darn thing tipping over, but there was no saving the bottles and stuff on top, including a jar of curry powder that promptly scattered over the almost-nicely-cleaned crappy vinyl flooring (fun fact: turmeric really stains!), and a bottle of canola oil that eagerly popped its top and spread about a pint of oil over a few square feet of floor. Urgh. Adding insult to injury was the compact fluorescent lightbulb that hit the floor right after I thought “Well, at least all the bottles stayed in one piece and there’s no broken glass.” Dangit.
And that’s why this post is late: I had a big mess to clean up, and then I finally took a shower, and wrote TracyFood at the last minute. Sorry.