Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Restock, Replenish, & Rain - Mostly Rain
If you want to make G*d laugh, make plans!
Started out in heavy rain at 7 am; cooler and lists in hand. And the best I could do was ultimately about 20% of items on the various lists. Practically every stop on the list was out of what I wanted, that was on sale. Frustrating, doesn't begin to cover it. The rain would taper off as I arrived at each stop, then come down in sheets as I made a dash to the car.
Hey, we need the rain here.
Returned home soaked and cold to the bone. Was going to stop at the new (Pennsylvania) Dutch Pantry market nearby but was too wet and uncomfortable to make the journey. This store carries various flours, grains, spices, and more. The owner buys in bulk, repackages and passes along the savings to the consumer. His previous store was too far away and I only made the trip 2 or 3 times. Now that he's closer, visiting will be easier. Maybe next week.
I unearthed the recipe collection, like discovering the tomb of some ancient Pharaoh, and out of sheer desperation (read tired of leftovers) put together one of my faves the other night. A Beef Daube! Almost all ingredients were on hand, except for the fresh mushrooms (canned worked just fine, though) and it was delicious just as I remembered it. Looking through the files I became aware that my spice collection needs some replenishing, too. I found lots of recipes that I used to make all the time, but couldn't after I moved into the previous apartment without a proper oven.
Then there are those posted by Dutch blogger and friend Peter, that I saved for future use. (I guess somewhere deep inside I knew I would have a place of my own again - just couldn't see through the haze.)
I also discovered that my kitchen utensils, baking pans, and casserole dishes need replenishing as well. These will begin being purchased when the financial hole I am currently in (thanks to the extra expense of the move & medical bill fiasco) eases somewhat, which will probably be mid-October. There is light at the end of the tunnel that I cannot see, yet.
One step at a time.
So, I figure that if I choose one recipe a week and purchase the herbs and spices for that, I will eventually have all the ingredients I need, plus enjoy some great meals in the process. Simple things like, turmeric, whole cloves, fennell, curry powder, celery seed, cumin, allspice, cinnamon sticks, etc. I lived the past 3 years without these, with only the most basic ingredients, but I don't have to anymore.
And may the crock pots gather dust in their hidden places while I get back to real, hands-on cooking this Autumn and Winter. "Make Way, I Take Large Steps!"
Too bad, there's only me to enjoy the fruits of my labor. I am not into fancy, hours of preparation, kinds of cooking, just healthy, hearty, comfort food from whatever country that hits my taste buds just right. I'll try anything (really!) at least once. More on this later.
OK, now get your mind out of the gutter, rinse it off, dry it, and put it a clean, safe place . For Shame!
No, don't worry, I am not going all Julia Child with this stuff - just the basics for baking, roasting and broiling will suffice. I mean, I don't even have a simple garlic press. We had three before the split - I have none - I guess he thought he needed all of them. Never mind.
It is what it is. No, really!
And so it goes.