The Goose That Quacked-
You know what to do when the best laid plans of mice and men go awry? You adjust. After seeing local goose prices at $5.00 lb., with most of them 10 lbs. on up, I changed tactics. Time for duck! Smaller, but much more reasonable. Since it was just for the two of us, I knew one five-pounder would be fine. I found a nice recipe- Roast Duck With Plum Sauce. Since I had a big jar of plum "butter" (from Walmart's European food section) I used it instead of the whole plums. It was delicious! Meat was very tender, juicy and the sauce came out perfect-
Stuffed with fresh oranges and onion
I served it with plum sauce, mashed Yukon golds, and sauteed fresh spinach. I will do this again for sure! I remembered something about using duck grease, so I did a little research. It is used like butter for flavoring for roasting veggies, etc. It gives it a wonderful flavor. I strained mine after it cooled, and into the fridge it went. I read it's actually sold as a VERY expensive ingredient in French cooking. I guess it always pays to do your research! I have about 1/2 a cup. I'll report back how the flavor is....
Wonderful Wordsworth Quote-I heard a quote tonight in "A River Runs Through It" that I hadn't heard for years. It is part of a William Wordsworth poem called "Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood"-
Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;
We will grieve not, rather find
Strength in what remains behind;
In the primal sympathy
Which having been must ever be;
In the soothing thoughts that spring
Out of human suffering;
In the faith that looks through death
Thanks to the human heart by which we live,
Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,
To me the meanest flower that blows can give
Thoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.
Hoppin' John For New Years-
I found a simple recipe for Hoppin' John, a traditional southern dish. With all the rich holiday foods, I wanted to do something simple and hearty. I didn't know it's traditionally served for New Years- Hoppin' John Customs
I used brown rice to serve with it, and followed this basic recipe-
4 cups frozen black eyed peas
enough water to cover
16 ozs. chopped bacon
2 large yellow onions
1 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. thyme
salt/pepper to taste
2 bay leaves
green onions for garnish
Put all ingredients in a large pot, bring to a boil, then simmer for at least one hour. Stir once in a while, and add more water as needed. When nice and hot, remove bay leaf and serve over hot rice. Garnish with green onions. Next time I will try adding a little more heat and some tomatoes.
We had a late white Christmas, with the snow starting about 8 p.m. or so. This morning the girls woke up to about an inch of white stuff, and wouldn't come out of the sun room-
there was much discussion about what the heck it was
They all stayed in until late afternoon, then came out and stretched their legs after it melted a bit
The New Chicken-
Dave got me the cutest chicken wind chime for Christmas!!!
I'll put it out tomorrow once the deck is safer
Anya had to explore her new toy- a kitchen step ladder!