Tag Archives: spinach

PSSS

birthday-pilgrim-style

Sooooo…

I didn’t exactly spend my birthday all Pilgrim style.

Not a single spoon…..and I’m OK with that. Instead there was

Pretty Spinach Salad with Salmon

The distaff cohort of the family – meaning Sis, Mom and Me – went to Isaac’s on the waterfront  – because, seriously, when you live on the coast you should eat with a view when you can .

issacs

It was actually the day after my birthday – my UnBirthday, and I was fine with that, too. There are so many more UnBirthdays in a year to celebrate…..

We began with individual preambles about what we were choosing and why, and then commented on all the choices and the specials, and asked questions about the choices to Sue, our heroic waitress, and the commented all over again when the food came and then gave commentary as we were eating….typical Italian meal.

This makes food sound like sport, but really, it was  great, good fun. Sue  was a delight and seemed to be having almost as much fun as we were.

There something about a leisurely meal  out in the middle of the day, that wafts of having not a care in the world….and we had an ocean view to boot. No troubles.

On Tuesdays many places in Plymouth are closed, especially in February, the official ‘it’s probably gonna snow so let’s just stay in’ month.

We did not take a single photo of the food. Which is a pity because it sure was purdy, and the light was great and the view fantastic.

My salad was….

HUGE

and a study in green and pink, a lovely bowl of spinach tossed with a light dressing, teeny-tiny nubbins of bacon and cheese and olive oil and  lemon juice….and on top of this pastoral springtime loveliness was a beautiful, hot, cooked to perfection salmon fillet.

salmon-meledezStill Life with Salmon, Lemon and Three Vessels Meléndez, Luis Egidio Copyright ©Museo Nacional del Prado

 

Imagine this fillet cooked to perfection.and piping hot on top of a bowl of green, green, greens. Such a large piece of salmon I thought I’d save half, but ate maybe ¾ –  still enough left to be worth saving and made another (less piggy) meal.

spinach

And talk

And talk

And laugh and laugh…..and then coffee.

Sue not only was able to figure what we wanted, what we wanted  saved, and saved it, but had overheard enough of our chatter – OK, not that difficult – to figure there was a birthday girl and brought a birthday surprise.

Ice cream with whipped cream and chocolate sauce and a candle.

single-birthday-candle-clip-art-i19

Sue also started sing the Happy Birthday song, loudly and with spirit.Mom and Sis chimed in, in parts no less.

Having been raised with these people, I merely smiled, and nodded, and gave my Queen of England wave to the the rest of the lunch crowd. patiently waiting to eat whipped cream with chocolate sauce.

I do love the un-birthday!

 

 

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Filed under Birthday, Eating, Lunch

Expiration Dates

Expiration dates

… Christmas rather peters out at Twelfth Night or Epiphany,   even for those of us who have managed  to keep it going THIS long.

Although, technically, you might continue the Christmas Season until February 2nd – Candlemas – The Presentation of Jesus to the Temple –

candlemas

Candlemas  is  also 40 days after Christmas.and the official official end of the Christmas season. So, my  door wreath is staying up as long as it doesn’t look shabby or it’s February, whichever comes first.

***

I bought new toothpaste and there was an expiration date on the box… toothpaste has an expiration date?????? Best by Au 17….I’ll be sure to use it up by then. It’s marked on the the end of the tube, so  I’ve been missing this for quite some time.

toothpaste barcode

See how subtle it is – and once you turn that end under…

toothpaste-used

barcode – hidden from view

***

Shrimp was on sale and it was too cheap to leave behind – the post-holiday good news!

shrimp ring

I ate  ½ as shrimp cocktail (is it true that fruit and shrimp cocktails are Prohibition stories????) as a starter for my supper. I then has some spaghettini  with olive oil and the rest of the cocktail sauce as the dressing for the pasta, and then a salad  of arugula dressed with  blood orange olive oil  and honey ginger balsamic vinegar. The rest of the shrimp (and the leftover spaghettini) will be my fritteta supper for tonight.

Hot chocolate with marshmallows as my dessert.

The shrimp Penaeus vannamie was farmed  in Viet Nam.

Shrimp also has an expiration date, which seems right…Shrimp(frozen) best by 03-11-2018. Beat it.

***

Mac & cheese – the store brand natural style (that means I bought it in the Natural Foods aisle, implying as it does that most of what they offer is neither natural nor food)  was on sale, so another semi impulse purchase.   I checked those boxes every which way, and could not find an expiration date.

mac-cheese box

I wanted to use up the last of the plain yoghurt, which was close to the end AND had been open several days, as well as the beginning to be a little too limpish to want to eat salad-wise salad greens, spinach and kale. This time of year probably  as many greens get tossed into soup and other hot foods as actual salads, maybe more.

Cooked the pasta, added the yoghurt, cheese powder and the greens – popped it into a baking pan (no-stick, saving the trouble of having to grease it up), and sprinkled the top with same grated cheese (I also had had the very dregs of a bag of sweet potato chip to use as a crunchy topping. I even remembered them – and noshed them down as I was waiting for the water to boil…..so close…..then I put the pan in a 350° oven for a little while just to finish cooking the greens and to brown the top.

I made a double batch, so not only did I have both supper and lunch, I also have freezer treasure.

***

Life hacks – sounds like something you’d wish the cat didn’t do….but there’s been  a workplace wave of microwave egg in a coffee cup. I haven’t tried this at home because most of my coffee cups are not the standard up and down, but hand crafter pottery and narrower at the top the bottom which leads to….. extraction issues

coffee mug handmade

Many of my mugs are more like this, and no 2 alike.

micri eggstep-by-step.xxxlarge_2x

This is how to make an omelet in a coffee mug

BUT – I was looking for something new for my morning oatmeal.So I added the egg to my oatmeal, instead of in a coffee cup. Like putting a poached egg on top of your hash….

I microwave it …so – I microwave ½ c regular rolled oats w/ 1 cup water for 4 minutes (instead of 5) on 50per cent power. Take it out and  make a little basin in the middle of the bowl – there’s often one there naturally – crack the egg and drop it on top of a pat of butter and then back in the microwave for another minute on high (sometimes a minute 30) and then sprinkle liberally with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

A nice warm way to start a cold day.

Hacked

You’ve been hacked – but the good hack, not the evil hack,

 

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Filed under Christmas, Eating

I’m strong to the FINNISH Cause I eats my Spinnage

I’m Sarah the  Pilgrim Woman! Ta-da!

Hey, if it rhymes for Popeye it can rhyme for me! (Popeye rhymes ‘finnach’ with ‘spinach’ – same deal, different dialect) popeye w spinach

And by the Finnish….I mean actual people from Finland.

These guys…

American Food Battle

Henri Alen and Nicolas Thielon from American Food Battle

Nicolas loved his pilgrim clothes….he thought he looked like a Musketeer, as in Three. And, The Three Musketeers did take place in 1627. In France and not New England, but still,

Nicolas could jump right in with the 1974 Three Musketeers crowd

Nicolas could jump right in with the 1974 Three Musketeers crowd, right in between Michael York and Richard Chamberlain

And, spinnage or spinach, was one of the dishes I prepared. It looked like this:

Spinach with eggs; German School, 17th century. Notice also r0asted quails

Spinach with eggs; German School, 17th century. Notice also r0asted quails

Divers Sallets boyled.
Parboile Spinage, and chop it fine, with the edges of two hard Trenchers upon a boord, or the backs of two Choppin-knives; then set upon a Chafingdish of Coales with Butter and vinegar. Season it with Sugar and a few parboyld Currans. Then cut hard Egges into quarters to garnish it withal, and serve it upon Sippets. So you may serve Burrage, Buglosse, Endiffe, Suckory, Coleflowers, Sorrell, Marigold-leaves,Wintercresses, Leekes boyled Onions, Sporragus, Rocket, Alexanders. Perboyle them and season them all alike: whether it be with Oyle and Vinenegar, or Butter and Vinegar, Sinamon, Ginger, Sugar, and Butter: Egges are necessary, or at least very good for all boyld Sallets.”
-1615. John Murrell. A Newe Booke of Cookerie. Falconwood ed. p. 15.

Quick run through for this Wicked Wayback Wednesday

  • Spinage is, natch, spinach
  • These trenchers are a kind of a knife, as are the Choppin knives – when I first saw this I thought they were Chopin Knives , and I was pretty sure that Chopin wasn’t around in 1615…
    Frederick Chopin, 1835 at age 25

    Frederic Chopin, 1835 at age 25 – nope, he wasn’t around in the 17th century

    Anyhow, chop spinach. Because of what happens next, even better, start with frozen chopped spinach and save yourself the trouble. When it’s cooked, drain the spinach. In fact, put it on an old clean towel and wring it out over a sink. Seriously. Squeeze that moisture out. I added 1/2 pound fresh sorrel to the almost 2 pounds of spinach as it was almost cooked down.  Sorrel doesn’t need much cooking and it really perks up spinach. The New York Times has this story on sorrel in the spring. (click on the link ) I’m going to try keeping some indoors this winter…..more on that later…. and I’ve never had trouble keeping sorrel all summer and into the Fall. Keep using it!

    Sorrel - Rumex acetosa. Oseille in French; suolaheinä in Finnish; acetosa in Italian

    Sorrel – Rumex acetosa. Oseille in French; suolaheinä in Finnish; acetosa in Italian

  • Put some butter in a heavy pan. By some, I mean a lot…Add the drained, wrung  out chopped spinach/sorrel mass. Put more butter on top. Over low heat, let the green stew up in butter and what’s left of its own juices.
  • Add currants – not the fresh ones, the dried ones. Parboil them first (just put boiling water over them for a few minutes – dried fruit is not as dried as it used to be. And that’s a change in the last 30 years, not the last 400). Raisins are really too big – currants are much nicer in this.

    Raisins V. Currants . Sometimes, Size matters.

    Raisins V. Currants . Sometimes, size DOES matter.

  • Add a splash of vinegar. How much depends on how much and how lip puckering your sorrel is, if you’ve added any. Add a little more butter on top, put the lid on the pan and keep it on low heat, stirring it about every now and again so nothing sticks to the bottom and all the spinach soaks up all the butter. Add more butter if it seems dry. Don’t be afraid of butter!
  • Hard boil some eggs. You’ve got time. Keep the green a-stewing.
  • What? No spinach? No worries – use borage, bugloss, endive, chicory,cauliflower, sorrel, calendula leaves , cresses, leeks, onions, asparagus (let me note here that in my opinion it is a crime against Nature to puree asparagus) rocket or arugala, and alexanders . This recipe is a master recipe – a whole class of salad, for all seasons of the year, covered.
    Alexanders (Smyrnium olusatrum) are a kind of wild celery, still found in the English countryside

    Alexanders (Smyrnium olusatrum) are a kind of wild celery, still found in the English countryside

     

  • Taste and season with cinnamon, ginger, sugar, vinegar and butter – all to your taste. Make it taste good. Your opinion counts!
  • Pile up on a serving platter and garnish with those hard boiled eggs, quartered. Serve hot, or warm, or at room temperature. What the painting doesn’t show is sippets – slices  of bread toasted or fried in butter. You knew there’d be more butter, right?

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Filed under Autumn, Recipe, The 17th century, TV shows