About Me

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Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Major Grey, eat your heart out!

We had a fresh pineapple in the fridge, a gag gift to LittleBit at Christmas from one of her friends at school, a tangible reminder of the punch-line to a joke they all think is hilarious, and I do not. Ordinarily, I prefer my pineapple to be canned and thoroughly dead. I can’t eat more than a few pieces of fresh pineapple without my tongue and palate beginning to ache from the enzymes.

As LittleBit is even more intermittently domestic than I, and the pineapple was taking up valuable real estate, and the likelihood of her doing anything useful with it before it rotted away to expensive compost was somewhat less than my winning the Nobel Peace Prize, I asked her if I could try a recipe for pineapple chutney in my new Nigella cookbook. She told me to go for it.

I had about half of the ingredients, the most crucial of which being an unwanted-by-me pineapple, and I improvised the rest. In place of turmeric, I substituted curry powder, which is mostly turmeric [just like Wesley in The Princess Bride was mostly dead, and a good thing too: how would I go about rifling a pineapple’s pockets for loose change?]. In place of three whole cloves, I tossed in half a teaspoon of ground cloves that may have been hanging about for half a decade or so, and a teaspoon of ginger instead of the star anise. I did have the cinnamon stick, the cider vinegar, and the demerara sugar. And a Pink Lady apple instead of a cooking apple. It nearly drove me mad as it simmered into mooshiness.

I do think that the next time I make this, for there most certainly will be a next time, I will chunk it all into the crock-pot and let it simmer away for a day or two. Can you imagine a nice piece of ham that had bubbled all day in such good company?

I also made an Italian salad, which I based on the recipe that Anne so kindly sent to me; it was different from anything I’d eaten before. And I like it. I used a blood orange instead of the garden-variety oranges I grew up with. Next time I think I’ll use one of each, just for greater contrast in color between the oranges and the kalamata olives. Two small green onions, sliced, and a dusting of freshly ground pepper before drizzling it with extra-virgin olive oil and tossing gently. I left out the anchovies. The olives were just salty enough; anchovies would have been de trop.

You will note the new header here on the blog. I snapped some photos for Secondborn, and she played with them and various virtual scrapbooking elements she has collected that are kosher for use in a blog header. There may be a bit of tweaking on down the road, but I am immensely pleased with her design and thankful that she is so willing to share her talents with me.

I found my blank checks. Actually, I didn’t find the ones I was looking for, but I found the ones that I couldn’t find before, which necessitated ordering the ones I was looking for. I have enough to last me until I move into again. [Or, if I also find the others, three times as many as I will need.] Now I just need to find my return address labels, so I can do a DIY address change on each check as I use it. That’s certainly good enough for paying the rent and the few bills that I still pay by check.

I think this calls for some celebratory baking!

Oh, and BTW, Pantone can kiss my grits. Blue Iris may be the up-and-comer in the world of color, but red still rules chez nous.


Tan said...

Your new header is beautiful!

You probably won't be able to tell if you like pineapple salsa or not based on your substitutions (I detest curry powder)! But which Nigella cookbook is it? Maybe we need that recipe!

Jerry said...

Not many could make the connection between Wesley and pinapple chutney but you could. I like the Blue Iris but I still prefer the Royal Purple The can tall me what I should like or what is the "the" color but we have monds of our own to know whats best for us and the rest of the world's sheep can follow Pantone.

punkin said...

I really like your new header. It looks great!

You are such a good cook. I was fascinated by how you pulled that all together.

Thank you for your comment on the Rogue pullover. The designer really did a good job on the pattern. I was pleased that it turned out and hopefully will get lots of use.

Oozaroo said...

Wait, what's the pineapple joke?