Posted tagged ‘leftovers’

“In the winter she curls up around a good book and dreams away the cold.”

December 28, 2017

The high today will be about 12˚ and the low around 6˚. The rest of the week will have similar temperatures. I dread going out, but I haven’t any choice. My trunk is filled with trash, I’m out of bread and cream and Gracie is out of canned dog food. I fear the dump stop most of all. It is open land and the freezing wind whips across the recycling area. I think of it as the local tundra. Avoiding it today only postpones the inevitable. Warm weather won’t be here until after the new year.

Yesterday was a day of leisure. I didn’t even get dressed. I read most of the day and was so exhausted I needed a nap.  Last night I had leftovers from Christmas for dinner. They were delicious. Now, only a bit of green bean casserole and some beef are left. Soon they too will be gone and Christmas dinner will be a delicious memory.

I don’t love being out in the cold, but I do love the cold as an excuse to stay home, comfy and warm. When I take Gracie out, I plead and beg for her to be quick, but she doesn’t really need my exhortations as she doesn’t like the cold much either. Boxers have short fur and on their bellies they have virtually none. When we go out, Gracie wears her coat to keep her warm while I am in the stores. Her coat is quite fashionable.

After Christmas, I feel a bit letdown. Everything which made the day special is finished. The leftover wrapping paper and ribbons are stored until next year. The decorations will soon be stored down cellar. The tree will be emptied of ornaments and thrown outside. I hate that most of all. It seems like an ignoble end for something so beautiful, for something which has keep the dark winter nights aglow. Its pine aroma still fills my downstairs rooms.

After the tree is gone, it takes me a while to get used to the house as it always is. The corner where the tree was looks wrong. That’s the most difficult part of Christmas, the end of it.

“The most remarkable thing about my mother is that for thirty years she served the family nothing but leftovers. The original meal has never been found.”

February 24, 2017

I was shocked when I went to get the newspapers. It was far warmer than I expected. It’s a deck day, a winter deck day. I’m going to finish here and get outside to enjoy the warmth before it disappears.

I am very late because I went to buy Chinese food for lunch. I had a hankering. After Gracie and I got home, I had to eat before my food got cold. It was totally delicious which is a good thing as that Chinese food, now a leftover, will also be my supper.

I have favorite leftovers. My chili is better on the second day so I make it a day ahead. That means, stay with me now, we are eating a leftover, a sort of leftover anyway, the first time I serve it. It is the same with my sausage cacciatore. I figure the tomatoes are what makes the dishes better the second day. They get to meld with everything else overnight. Dinner of Thanksgiving leftovers is almost as good as the original meal.

When I was a kid, a dinner of all the Thanksgiving leftovers was almost as good as the original meal. I know the turkey generally outlasts its welcome and is sometimes greeted with groans of not again, but for a few days after Thanksgiving, the turkey appeared in every meal except breakfast, and we never complained. The turkey sandwich was my favorite. On the toasted bread, I piled turkey, cranberry sauce and stuffing. I used mayo.

I made meatloaf a couple of weeks back. I had it with mashed potatoes and peas, my favorite combination. That was my dinner for two nights then the leftover meatloaf became an always delicious sandwich for my lunch. I use mayo.

I know people who won’t eat leftovers. Their reasons are seldom rational. The favorite answer is,”I don’t eat them because I don’t like them.” A why don’t you like them never gets an answer.

I bought dog food yesterday and I also bought 2 boxes of girl scout cookies. A friend at Agway stores the cookies for her daughter. My favorite used to be thin mints, but now I buy tagalongs which are peanut butter and chocolate, known elixirs for what ails us.

“At the heel end of the day, I need my glass of wine. Christmas lights for the brain.”

November 25, 2016

Dinner was delicious yesterday, and I even brought home a doggy bag so they’ll be a dinner  of leftovers this evening. The restaurant was bustling when we arrived but quieted down as we sat and dined.

The day is cloudy as it has been seemingly forever. I don’t remember the last time I saw the sun. The temperature has been in the high 40’s, but without the sun, it seems colder. The trees are bare with only a few brown leaves clinging to the ends of branches. Winter is coming with all its starkness.

Some houses have their outside colored lights lit, and I saw a few Christmas trees through living room windows as we drove home last night. One strand of lights on my deck rail comes on every night. It is my way to beat back the darkness, but within the next week or two, all my outside Christmas lights will be put up on the fence, the gate and the deck to brighten the night. I need to buy a few wreaths, one for the door, one for the front gate and one for the fence off the deck.

Gracie and Maddie are napping. Neither of them was good company last night. They had no problem sleeping the night away. Gracie woke me up this morning by tapping the mattress near my head with her paw. That dog has no patience. I, of course, got up to let her outside. I don’t toy with a dog needing out.

I will avoid going out today because of the shopping crowd and the uninviting weather. Tomorrow I’ll do some local shopping for small stocking type gifts. Sunday will be dump day. I didn’t get to sleep until after 3:30 this morning. I have no idea why this sudden insomnia. I entertained myself by watching the new Anne of Green Gables, Star Trek Deep Space Nine and by looking through catalogues and magazines. I cut out recipes and dog-eared pages with interesting stories. I found a few neat things to order. I like shopping in my comfy clothes from my warm house.

“Food, like a loving touch or a glimpse of divine power, has that ability to comfort.”

July 26, 2016

I’m close to screaming in frustration. Today will be hot yet again. That the humidity will be less is small consolation. I have the AC off for a while, but the temperature in the house has risen three degrees already so soon enough I’ll be stuck behind closed doors and windows. I did finish one of my errands yesterday, but that still leaves one more for today.

The kitchen in the house where I lived the longest was tiny. When the oven was lit, the kitchen quickly got hot and stayed that way long after dinner was finished. My mother, during the summer, cooked on the stove top. She made stuff like pasta, hamburgers, fried dough and even hot dogs. She never grilled. Her dinner sides were sometimes potato salad or pasta salad. She never made a green salad. Dessert was always a maybe dependent on what was in the house. It could have been cookies, Oreos of course, or ice cream or a popsicle. My favorite popsicle was root beer followed by a close second, cherry. If neither was available, an orange would do just fine. 

Some people I know don’t ever eat leftovers. I don’t get that. Some food tastes better the next day. My chili is always best the day after I make it so I usually make it the day before I need it. That way any fat gets skimmed. I like leftover pasta. Add fresh garlic bread, some cheese and you have a perfect meal. 

Winter has comfort food. It keeps us warm and brings back memories. Summer has hot dogs and hamburgers best cooked on a grill. You have to toast the buns. 

My mother used to make piccalilli every fall when there were green tomatoes. She made New England style piccalilli with those green tomatoes, red peppers, onions, brown sugar, cider vinegar and some spices like mustard powder and a few others I don’t remember. She’d give us all a couple of jars. I’d use it sparingly so it would last longer. I swear a hot dog with my mother’s piccalilli was perfection in a bun. 

“When we recall Christmas past, we usually find that the simplest things — not the great occasions — give off the greatest glow of happiness.”

November 27, 2015

Dinner was wonderful. The plate was tottering under the weight of all the food. There was even enough to bring home for me to have leftovers tonight, a whole meal of leftovers.

The restaurant was already lit for the festive season, and on the drive home we also saw houses bright with lights, some in white and others multi-colored. I always feel like a kid when it comes to Christmas lights. Even alone in the car I ooh and aah. Every year I take Gracie, and we go on a see the lights trip, just as I did with my family when I was growing up. I remember my brother was at one back seat window, and I was at the other. We’d yell out, “There’s another one,” and all heads would swivel to see the house. We had favorite houses and favorite streets. A few streets in Saugus had a neighborhood competition. All the houses were bright with strings of colored lights from those large outside bulbs we had when I was a kid. The colors were true and they were beautiful. We’d drive through the streets with our mouths wide in wonder. Nobody had to say a word as every house was lit. Our heads went back and forth quickly so we wouldn’t miss a thing.

My hometown fire station had a Santa climbing a ladder to the top of the bell tower. The town hall down the street from the fire station was out-lined in lights. The square had lights strung across the main street from building to building. One house, a couple of blocks from mine, had the whole house outlined in lights including every window and door. Lights also ran across the top of the fence surrounding their yard. I remember they had collies running in the yard. My dad decorated the bushes in the front of the house, and we had Christmas lights in the windows, the ones you turned on and off by twisting the bulbs. If I close my eyes, I can see the picture window with a light on each side and a light with five bulbs in the middle. I remember the bulbs were orange.

I was always excited to see those lights they were the signal that Christmas was creeping nearer and nearer.

“… food is not simply organic fuel to keep body and soul together, it is a perishable art that must be savoured at the peak of perfection.”

November 15, 2013

No sun today and a fairly strong breeze, but the day is warm for November, in the high 50’s, and will be the same all week. One day may even reach 60˚. I’m thinking the deck with my face to the sun.

My back is screaming loudly from my over-doing. I am not a slow learner but just figure I can do what I always used to do. I can’t. Yesterday I hauled out the heavy litter. It is biodegradable pine litter which turns into sawdust when wet, and the bag was heavy. I carried it downstairs, outside to the car and then lifted it into the trunk. I also went shopping for my dinner ingredients and toted three heavy bags of groceries into the house. I left the stout in the car and thought I was being cautious. I wasn’t. I spent the whole middle of the day and the afternoon getting dinner ready. All of the dishes were ready to cook, and because I just had to put two of them into the oven and reheat the carrots, I got to spend the evening sitting with my friends rather than in the kitchen. I thought getting everything ready was a great idea. I was wrong. I never thought about all that standing while I worked.

Dinner was perfectly planned from appetizers to dessert. I, however, didn’t plan for my back, but luckily for me my friends did the clean-up. I just sat and gave directions. It sort of made me feel like the lady of the manor.

I slept little last night between Gracie’s snoring and my back aching. I didn’t even go upstairs until 2 AM. I most decidedly see a nap in my future.

I have wonderful leftovers for dinner tonight.