Posted tagged ‘beans’

“August rain: the best of the summer gone, and the new fall not yet born. The odd uneven time.”

August 26, 2017

Today is a carbon copy of yesterday. Carbon copy? Where did that come from? I haven’t seen a carbon copy for years. It has gone the way of the phone booth.

Last night got really chilly. I grabbed the afghan, snuggled under it and fell right back to sleep. When I woke up, the morning still had a chill, especially the backyard as the sun doesn’t get there until the afternoon. The first cup of coffee was especially inviting this morning,

Peapod came this morning, and all the groceries are already put away. I noticed I bought hot dog buns but no hot dogs. I also forgot toilet paper. I swear I looked and chose the paper I wanted, but obviously I didn’t; however, I did remember the Twizzlers. I do have priorities. I’ll just have to hit the grocery store later.

Artichokes are ugly. They are also too much work to eat. I sometimes wonder who was brave enough to taste one for the first time, and how long did it take to figure out how to eat it?

When I first started eating brie, I didn’t like the brie mold. I’d dig around underneath it and leave a gaping hole, sort of like eating the pie filling and leaving the top crust. It took a while before I realized the mold was tasty.

The world knows I hate beans. Where that came from I have no idea. Even as a kid I didn’t like beans. Our Saturday night baked beans never touched my plate. I look with distain at most beans, but one type makes me grimace, makes me crinkle my face in disgust. That would be refried beans. I can never get pass how they look. They are gross.

I love kitchen tools. My favorite is my juicer. It is orange metal and is the easiest way ever to get lemon or lime juice. I also love my avocado skinner, parer and my corn cutter which takes the kernels off the cob. I have this amazing little wheel which you roll and it minces garlic as it goes. I bought onion glasses but they didn’t really help all that much. Now I buy chopped onion to save myself. I have a mandolin, but the first time I used it I cut my finger so I don’t use it so much. I have knife sharpeners, but I can never seem to get them to work. Most off my knives are depressingly dull. On my sometime in the future to do list is to bring a few knives at a time to be sharpened. Lord only knows if my fingers will be safe.

Last night I was standing outside the Cape Playhouse before going inside. It was only 7:30, and it was already getting dark. I wanted to scream. Summer is too quickly coming to an end. Labor Day, the traditional end of summer, is next weekend. It’s time to accept the seasons are changing and it’s time to bring the sweatshirts out of the guest room closet.

“Spring is a powerful spell. The blue. The clouds high up and puffy. The air warmer than it’s been for weeks.”

June 3, 2017

I have no flowers yet. Yesterday was a bust. I didn’t even leave the house except to walk Gracie to the back gate a few times during the day and into the night. I just had no ambition. Some days I’m like that.

Today is sunny and warm, but there is a possibility of showers. It is in the mid 60’s now and may get as low as 51˚, normal spring time weather for New England. I’m happy with showers. They tend to come quickly and leave as quickly. Rain stays around.

All the rain has made for a lush, green world. My lawn has new grass in spots, Gracie squat spots. The rest of the lawn is filling in nicely, and every day new blooms open in the garden. I noticed some of the flowers have seeded themselves and are blooming in new spots. The irises have buds, large purple buds close to blooming. Every day a different delight in the garden catches my eye.

While I’ve been writing this, the sun has disappeared. Clouds have covered it, and I’m not so sure it will be back. The chance of showers is closer to a certainty.

The longer days confuse me. I’m surprised when I check the clock and find out it is still early afternoon but therein lies a problem. I’m a bit confused as to when early afternoon ends and late afternoon begins. I’m leaning toward 4 o’clock.

I’m having hot dogs for dinner tonight, but I’m skipping the beans and brown bread. I never did eat the beans, and I can’t remember when last I ate brown bread. Regardless, though, I’m still calling tonight’s supper a Saturday tradition.

“Springtime is the land awakening. The March winds are the morning yawn.”

March 18, 2016

Spring arrives this Sunday. I have this visual of winter packing its duffle bag while spring is unpacking its flowered tote. Spring, being experienced in the passing of the baton, will have packed a few sweaters and maybe a pair of bright yellow galoshes.

According to the weatherman, parts of the state will get snow on Sunday. I think it is just so wrong no matter how you look at it. If I were in charge, I’d make a law which prohibits snow once winter has skulked away. Luckily, we here on the cape will get mostly rain.

The sky is ominous in some spots right now. The weatherman has predicted afternoon showers. Gracie has her well dog visit to the vets this afternoon, and we’ll also go to the dump. That’s the spoonful of sugar.

St. Patrick’s Day was wonderful. Dinner was perfect. Everything was cooked just right. The meat was tender and delicious as were the vegetables. I love cabbage, but I don’t understand why. Its strange smell when it’s cooking seems to hang around far too long. I’m guessing one of the reasons I like it is I was an adult before I tried it for the first time so I brought no childhood food nightmares with me to the tasting.

When I was a kid, there were certain foods I hated. Beans, as you know, is one of them. Peaches have fur I can’t get passed though even if I could, I don’t like the taste. Over time I do keep trying the foods I wouldn’t eat. I came to love turnip. As for beans, no matter how many times I try beans of different varieties I still don’t like them. The only bean I’ll tolerate, actually the only bean I like, is green beans in that wonderful casserole which has been around for millennia. I grew into liking carrots by themselves instead of eating them mashed and mingled with potatoes the way my mother served them to us. Actually duped, not served, is the better verb here. My mother was being very clever and quite sly. It took a while before I realized potatoes didn’t turn orangey when cooked.

“People can say what they like about the eternal verities, love and truth and so on, but nothing’s as eternal as the dishes”

June 28, 2015

Last night the sky opened and the rain fell and kept falling until just a little while ago. I’m thinking we got an inch or more of rain. During the height of storm the wind was fierce, and the trees were blown about as if it were a hurricane. I have a branch down in the front yard, and my umbrella, despite its 100 pound base, tipped over onto the deck rail. One of my giant clay pots either fell or, more likely, was shoved off the rail and it shattered on the steps. I saw two grey spawns chasing each other on the deck, amorously I suspect, and they might be the broken clay pot culprits. I cleaned the mess and now have dirt under my nails.

I like Sundays, and though they are no longer the same quiet Sundays of my childhood, they do seem more subdued than any other day of the week. The kids aren’t playing in the street and even the dogs are quiet. I remember Sunday dinner as my favorite meal of the week, and I remember all of us eating together at the table. That was unusual as my Dad worked long hours and generally came home late, after we’d already eaten. He was a salesman who worked back then for J. P. Manning Co, a huge tobacco wholesaler in Boston which, among other things, sold cigars and cigarette vending machines. Once I went with my Dad to his office in Boston, but I stayed in the car. All I remember is seeing the name J. P. Manning across the top of a window.

Every dinner on Sunday had a roast as the center piece, mashed potatoes, gravy and a vegetable or two: green beans, peas, yellow waxed beans or string beans, all from cans. My mother bought her set of Sunday dishes from the supermarket, a dish a week. She also bought the accompanying dishes including a gravy boat, a vegetable server which held two vegetables and a platter for the cut slices of meat. The dishes were off-white with what looked like wheat on them as a decoration and were made of melmac. Though the dishes lasted forever, they started to fade over time and were relegated to being every day dishes.

When my mother started serving Sunday dinner on real dishes, it was cause for celebration. My mother was acknowledging we were growing up and could now be trusted with breakable dishes.

“Nobody knows the truffles I’ve seen.”

May 8, 2014

Yesterday while I was out doing errands, I noticed all the trees and bushes in bloom. The bright yellow of the forsythias popped and caught my eyes. I saw white blossoms on a row of trees and trees with purples and pinks. I smiled all the way home. It was just that kind of a ride.

Today is warm and lovely.

I don’t eat beans except for green beans. Refried beans look thoroughly disgusting to me. Baked beans are squishy. Lima beans have a strange, uninviting color. Kidney beans could use a change of name. I have never been a fan of beans, and this distaste for all things bean dates from my childhood. I have tried over the years to eat beans just in case but the outcome has always been the same.

When I was a kid, we only had yellow mustard so I used it on my hot dogs. I don’t eat yellow mustard any more though I am still a mustard fan. My fridge probably has five or six different mustards.

Speaking of hot dogs, ketchup on hot dogs is just wrong. Ketchup is for hamburgers and French fries. Piccalilli or relish goes perfectly with the mustard. Onions add a dimension to the dog but no onions with ketchup. It is the same for sauerkraut, cheese or any other topping. Ketchup limits the choices and the taste.

Speaking of ketchup, I just don’t see putting it on eggs. Ketchup on scrambled eggs is not a pretty picture. Nobody puts it on fried eggs or boiled eggs, just scrambled and sometimes omelets. Why is ketchup for some eggs but not for others?

I never put ketchup on onion rings, just on French fries. I never use much salt, but I do put salt on both of those. They just seem to taste better. I also like mayonnaise for my fries. That probably seems weird.

I love cheeseburgers. When I go out, I order them often as I don’t eat them much at home. Sometimes I add lettuce, onion and tomato, and when I do, mayonnaise is my condiment of choice. If I don’t, ketchup is just fine.

On my sub sandwiches, depending, of course, on the sandwich, I add pickles, onions and hot peppers. My love for hot peppers comes from the father of an elementary school mate of mine. I was at her house sometimes for lunch and her father always added hot peppers to his sandwiches. He offered them to me, and I tried them and liked them. I also like to add chopped jalapeños. Sandwiches need the kick.

Ghana was where I became an adventurous eater. It was where I first ate Indian food and Middle Eastern dishes like hummus, falafel and tabbouleh. I saw and ate okra for the first time. The slime in the soup was a bit much, but I got over that. Bush rat and goat were tasty.

I learned in Ghana to ask very few questions about what I was eating. It was better that way.