13 February, 2017  |   Comment

On Valentine’s Eve

Little kids make the best Valentines

Romance is such a new construction. It was just a few hundred years ago that women were just purchased and traded out on the open market. This makes the history of Valentine’s day both fresh and confusing.

Valentine's arrow to the heartHistorians still aren’t quite sure why Valentine’s day is related to St. Valentine.
Was it that he fell in love with his jailer’s daughter?
Was it that he married lovers?
We don’t quite know.

What we do know is that some etymologists think Valentine’s day is just a confusion of consonants. Back when the letters v and g were considered interchangeable, the Norman word “galantin” which meant “a lover of women,” was at one time written and pronounced valantan AND valentin.

We love our romance, we can’t be bothered to keep our consonants straight.
Sounds pretty human.

All of that said, my favorite part of Valentine’s day are all the superstitions.

You can't be too sure what a kid's Valentine will include

Graveyard Visions
Back in the 1600s, a girl, could conjure up a vision of her future spouse. All she had to do was go to the graveyard on St. Valentine’s Eve at midnight.

There, she would sing a song and run around the church twelve times.
Boom. Vision of her future husband bestowed.

Stay at Home Version
If she didn’t want to leave her house, she could do what this lady did back in 1754:

“Last Friday was St. Valentine’s Day, and the night before I got five bay leaves and pinned four on the corners of my pillow and the fifth to the middle; and then if I dreamt of my sweetheart, Betty said we should be married before the year was out.

But to make it more sure I boiled an egg hard and took out the yolk and filled it with salt; and when I went to bed ate it shell and all, without speaking or drinking after it.

We also wrote our lovers; names on bits of paper, and rolled them up in clay and put them into water; and the first that rose up was to be our Valentine.

Would you think it? Mr. Blossom was my man. I lay abed and shut my eyes all the morning, till he came to our house, for I would not have seen another man before him for all the world.”

Got that?

All you have to do is pin a few bay leaves to your pillow corners, boil an egg, take out the yolk without breaking the shell too much, fill the hole with salt and eat the whole thing without water.

Vision granted.
Humans, we are weird.

Tomorrow, we’ll probably make some heart shaped bacon, cut up some heart shaped strawberries and deliver Valentines to the people we love the most.

Hope your Valentine’s day is chock-full of love.

11 February, 2017  |   Comment

Egg Carton Saturday

This week, we decorated our egg carton like it was a monster.
More egg cartons should have teeth.
Teeth on our egg cartons would remind us that we are
no
better
than
the
foxes.

Decorate your farm fresh egg carton like a monster!

10 February, 2017  |   Comment

Poetry Friday: Cool Girls Sort


Cool girls sort
through the racks
at the store
front
not back

Cool girls sort of
kind of
not really
commit to a feeling like
whatever

Cool girls sort
you into yes or no or
yes and no over
time you will be
both yes and
no

Cool girls sorted you
they’ve always known
where you really belong

8 February, 2017  |   Comment

Repost: Frodo Risotto Recipe

I don’t know about you, but the meals I’ve been making keep getting richer and more fiddly. Lots of parts, lots of chopping and lots of steps. This Frodo Risotto recipe is exactly the kind of food I’m craving this year.

(Pairs beautifully with Pan-Fried Chicken Thighs.)

We love Frodo Baggins.Originally posted 2 years ago.

We made a hobbit dinner the other night.
James and I love Frodo. Bilbo too. We are Hobbits at heart.

Secure in our snuggly Shire home, we welcome any old man with fireworks to entertain the children.
The barefoot, mildly wild children.

And they all eat Frodo Risotto.

This is Frodo Risotto. It's a baked risotto.

We served Frodo Risotto with local Shire greens.
And some roast game (chicken).

Adapted from a Donna Hay recipe, this risotto bakes in the oven while you catch up with cousin Frieda Baggins about what’s causing the rabbit shortage.

Ingredients
1/2 butternut squash, peeled and diced about 1/2″ (Probably about 2 cups diced squash)
3 cups arborio rice
7 cups chicken stock
3/4 cup white wine (For cooking, I like any inexpensive Sauvignon Blanc)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
3 tablespoons butter, chopped
1 small onion, minced
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
Additional Salt and Pepper to taste

Optional:
1/2 cup light olive oil for frying the sage
10 sage leaves, washed and dried

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350┬░.

Cate Blanchette, Lady Galadriel of Lothlorien, will try to scarysexy you into giving her your ring but don’t you let her.

Elvin Butternut Squash.

To avoid all risk, you probably should skin her and chop half of her into tiny bits.

Peeled Elvin (Elvish?) Butternut Squash.

You can mince Samwise Gamgee into tiny bits while you’re at it too.

Nooooooo Frodoooooo

Mix the first seven ingredients in a 9″ x 12″ baking dish.
Combine, being careful not to slosh.

Something lives beneath the surface of that salty lake.

Cover baking dish with aluminum foil and put in oven on top of a baking tray (to guard against sloshing) for 1 hour.

30 minutes into the baking time, take off the foil and stir it. You will be disappointed by the lack of progress. But hold tight, little hobbit, your dinner is right on plan. Return the foil to the top of the baking dish, being careful not to burn your hands. Put the risotto back in the oven for roughly 30 more minutes.

This is when I would fry up the sage.

Heat the oil in a small frying pan over medium-high heat, frizzle the sage in there until crispy, only a minute or two. Remove and drain on paper towels

After 30 more minutes, remove the baking dish from the oven.
Stir two tablespoons of butter and Parmesan cheese through the risotto.
Stir through 7 leaves worth of crumbled fried sage.

Garnish with the remaining 3 leaves.

Serve.
And watch out for fireworks.

Welcome all old men carrying fireworks