Dozer, the Bulldog

Dozer, the Bulldog
Feeling the "Bern"

Ellie Mae

Ellie Mae
No time for gates...

Ollie Mac

Ollie Mac
My cooking assistant

Ollie and Annie

Ollie and Annie
Azorean grandmother

Spring

Spring
38 years on this mountain, come May 31st...

Flowers

Flowers
Daisies

Papa and Ollie Mac

Papa and Ollie Mac
Priorities, Baby

Beauty

Beauty
Annie, my Sweetest of Apple Blossoms

My first portrait

My first portrait
"Mr. Farmer"

Mahlon Masling Blue

Mahlon Masling Blue
My friend and brother.

Mark's E-mail address

bellspringsmark@gmail.com

Thursday, July 16, 2020

No Whopper

Every morning I wake up convinced that this will be the day I finally shake the cobwebs out of my blog, and kick-start that baby to life. With mixed metaphors like that one, it is no wonder I am on sabbatical. I theorize that I have simply convinced myself it is because I have too much to say, so why bother?
I bother as much as a tribute to Annie, as for any other reason. Of all that has occurred in the last six months since she left us, including the closure of the baseball season for ANY reason, I would lead off with this: I have prepared a main meal for the farm staff for fifty-nine consecutive weekdays, beginning late last April and running through today.
Rancho-styled steak
“Right,” she’d respond. “And Guy Fieri was your sous chef.”

“No, seriously,” I would plow on, talking a tad too fast because I really was not sure I could convince her that this was no whopper. “Even though I have not left this mountain in 123 days, I get most of what I need from the farm or the freezer, and in some instances the two are one and the same." 

"But check this out," I would go on, "we even have theme-related days because it turned out to be the only way to keep my head from spinning right off of my [pencil] neck."

I don't always make waffles, but when I do,
I heat the waffle iron up for ten full minutes.
True story. Monday is breakfast at lunch, and I could serve raw banana slugs with fresh red, fire ants, as long as I included the waffles. [Annie, do you remember the last time you and I were going to knock everyone’s socks off by whipping up some tasty waffles bidness, and the very first one stuck so bad we had to use a torch to clean the griddle?]
Yeah, well the pancakes were just fine, but that’s not the point. Do you know what we did wrong? We did not let the waffle iron warm up long enough. The directions said it has to warm up for ten minutes. Wait, what? Well, sure it entailed reading the directions, and that is not all that has changed around here. 

Anyway, Tuesday is Mexican cuisine day, and always includes a pot of fresh pinto beans, Spanish rice, a monster green salad and a main course. I did chicken taquitos this week, chicken tacos last week, regular tacos (Is there such a thing?) the week before and enchiladas the week before all of those.

Wednesdays is shepherd’s pie; it is etched in concrete. I used some of Meadow’s top quality sirloin steak this week, HappyDayFarms chicken last week and organic hamburger the week before that, and no matter what week it is, I peel and pare potatoes, parsnips and peppers and prepare a huge pie.

Back in the day, Annie and I used to tag-team a couple of lunches per week, with maybe a breakfast thrown in there somewhere for the crew, but it used to seem like such an intense effort as to leave us wondering whether we were coming or going.

Annie was the brains; I was the brawn, or as I used to say, "I'm helping! I'm helping!" I did the slicing and dicing while Annie did the spicing and icing. We made a good team but she used to spend a lot of time on each meal, making lists and checking them until she wore the ink off of the paper, and had to start from scratch.

I may scratch my head a lot, trying to remember if there are more bell peppers in the outside fridge, but I keep track of things pretty well.

Now, Thursday's menu choice belongs to me, and today I made rancho steak, with onions, peppers, garlic, carrots, zucchini, home-canned tomatoes, some top round steak and lots of cumin, pasilla powder, salt and black pepper. Past Thursday selections have included macaroni and cheese, pasta Alfredo, beef stroganoff, potato/leek soup, chicken cacciatore, fajitas with barbecued tri-tip and a fish fry with French fries.

Fridays is barbecue day, and involves either a potato salad or home-grown French fries if cheese burgers are the name of the game.

Oh, what I would say to you, Annie, if you were here. I have a list of stuff ten miles long, but first, while I have you on the line, is there any chance you can tell me what happened to our good serving spoon? 

No, I don’t care how you deliver the info….

3 comments:

  1. Your writing is inspiring and thought provoking - so detailed and soulful, yet down-to-earth and real. Another wonderful tribute to Annie and her legacy - cooking is delicious food for the farm staff and comfort for you, especially during these tumultuous times. AS ALWAYS. thanks for sharing your spirit . . .

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  2. I'm glad you had her on the line and she could hear how well you have tackled the kitchen duty! It all sounds like wonderful feasts and I'm glad the farm team is so well nourished and cared for

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  3. You are such an inspiration Markie!

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