Ah – April… The howling wind, freezing rain, snow and sleet – wait – what??
The sun was warm but the wind was chill.
You know how it is with an April day
When the sun is out and the wind is still,
You’re one month on in the middle of May.
But if you so much as dare to speak,
A cloud comes over the sunlit arch,
A wind comes off a frozen peak,
And you’re two months back in the middle of March.
(Two Tramps in Mud Time – Robert Frost)
All right, it’s Spring in the Northeast, swinging from May to March is normal – but June to February in two days is pushing. Temperatures brushed 80 a few days ago, and went into the 20s last night… Brr…
So this affects my weather sensitive body (though not as badly as it might have, I’m pleased to say.) I’ve also been working hard on learning some New Things (and new to me technology) – you’ll see the first results of that in the next week or so, I hope. And I’ve had a few Kitchen Issues to resolve.
So I cooked – I do want to eat, and I was able to – but I don’t seem to have put much attention into pictures – sorry, these are rather poorer than I realized when I was taking them!
Bean tacos and scrambled eggs. Looking back over the last few weeks, you’d think we ate this every day, and we don’t, but… we do frequently. Eggs and muffins or protein shake and cereal are really just as typical! And since I’ve been making all these great waffle recipes I should really make waffles more often… but I tend to make them during the day and then toast them for breakfast, because I’m groggy in the morning – so then I don’t think about them when I should be making them. I should work on that… because we do both enjoy them, when I get my act together!
For lunch – I had some of my prebrowned ground meat, a can of tomatoes, and pasta. You haven’t seen pasta here much lately. I have jumped through every hoop I could find, and tried every brand people suggested, and still could not find a rice pasta we liked. For years, we ate pasta made from durum wheat imported from Italy largely because (in our separate neighborhoods) that was the cheap stuff! (Alas, no longer…) So we both developed a taste for a very firm bite. Then I switched to whole wheat, which is even more chewy… At the time, friends recommended Tinkyada, as a whole grain pasta “with good texture” so many of you indeed might like it, but even then, it was too soft for us… so it is very much a matter of taste.
But now I have discovered corn pasta. I can cook it al dente! By my definition of the term! It is inexpensive at Aldi’s! (Aldi’s is an hour away by bus… and if I’m up there, I already have my arms full, since it is next to Costco. And oh, for the record, no affiliation, no compensation, just mentioning stores I shop at…) I haven’t found it anyplace else, yet. So you’re not going to see much pasta – but it is again an occasional option, for days like this, when I Really Should have Planned Lunch.
I did better with dinner… Last summer I froze some of the sour cherries, to perk up meals in winter. As I empty the freezer, I find bags buried in the back “Oh – I still have some of that?” These are often called pie cherries – they really have more flavor than most of the sweet cherries we eat out of hand. But I’m not sweetening them for pie these days. I am having fun exploring the sour or bitter flavors that our culture so often drown in sweet… there are other ways to balance them (think cream in coffee) without sweetness and they add interest to moderately bland meals.
So – chickpeas and cherries… match made in heaven. I cooked some chicken with them, and added chopped spinach at the end – served it all over millet. Rich was surprised when I said they were sour cherries… they just added some life to the meal. When cherry season rolls around again, I have to pursue this combination!
And see you next week, when (hopefully) I’ll unveil my latest Learning Experience!