If you’re wondering, the minestrone was delicious. Given the windy, cold, rainy cold we’re experiencing of late, I can not recommend hearty bowls of soup with crusty bread highly enough. You probably need some now. I mean it, right now. I’ll wait.
Did you remember the bread? Fresh, crusty loaves are critical to the soup-eating, you know. They add toothsomeness and delicious yeasty goodness and the ability to sop up every last bit of soup.
I now have a craving for bread.
In other news, this week’s shipment of veggies (the penultimate week, I’ve been informed) has come in, and it’s starting to be a little rag-tag, which is to be expected with end-of-the season garden clearing, I think.
This week, I had the choice of red or white potatoes (I chose red to change things up), more turnips (vs kohlrabi), green onions, carrots, a lone tomato, and the first winter squash of our CSA.
A couple of the smaller turnips, and a little over half the potatoes we did up as roasties with a chicken. The other turnips are destined for latkes next week, and I’ll either make a soup or a mash with the squash.
One of our friends recently finished the Cordon Bleu intensive beginner’s course (from the sounds of it, it was extremely hardcore), and sent us a recipe for butternut squash soup, with the statement that it was so delicious, and to please not use store-bought stock when making it. Well, I am happy to report that I still have homemade stock in my freezer (although I definitely didn’t make it the way his recipe encourages), so I wonder if that would make it okay to substitute non-butternut for the squash part?
One day, I swear I’ll follow a recipe to the letter. One day.
Fun fact: I was apparently not entirely there the day I made that stock because after pouring the stock into the freezer containers and letting them cool, I slapped some masking tape on them (my normal mode of labelling freezer foods) and on one I predictably wrote “Chicken Stock”. On the other container? “Clinky Stock” If you have any idea what I might have been distracted by while writing, I’d be curious to hear it, because I avow that I have absolutely no idea.
This weekend, aside from attending a ridiculously over-the-top Harry Potter-themed Hallowe’en party, I finally got a chance to do some much-needed garden tidying. The rain barrel was emptied, the last of the tomatillos plucked and all the remaining plants yanked out of the beds. I re-dug, re-manured, generally mixed everything around, and raked the beds into a pretty, ready state.
I would love to have planted a green manure crop (I have plenty of mustard seed lying around, for reasons unknown) but given the cold, I really didn’t think I’d have time. So I’m waiting a week or two to sow next year’s garlic, then it’s off to notebooks and scribbles and plotting for me.
While I was digging and turning, however, I did solve the mystery of why nothing seems to grow in the north bed. It is not, as many folk had postulated, because it’s next to the AC unit (although I would definitely understand if that resulted in stunted growth). The reason is because those creepers on our south wall have vicious, grasping little roots, and they were growing up into the beds from beneath and thus competing with my poor, weak little seedlings for space, and strangling their root systems with their better-developed networks.
One more reason I dislike those creepers (although I will admit they make for nice autumn foliage).
I can’t bring myself to just remove the bed (it’s the south wall! One of the best spots we have!) so I suspect I’ll be taking my dad’s advice and pulling all the dirt out of the bed, laying down some landscaping fabric, and hoping for the best. When I will have time to do this, however, is another matter entirely.
While I was playing in the dirt, The Boy finished up a project that he’s been working on, in little snatches of time, for quite awhile. Despite the fact that our dog is (as The Boy says) “good to -40”, we felt that he could still use a place that would provide shelter from rain and snow, especially given his love for mellowing out outside in the cooler nights.
This discussion kicked off a great Search For The Perfect Doghouse Plan. The Boy put an amazing amount of thought and agonizing into it, and then he built it!
Chewie is currently a little wary of the house, as he is with most small, enclosed spaces, but thanks to his play balls and some treats, he is venturing into the house briefly. We expect he’ll appreciate it more once the snow starts, but time will tell.
The coming week brings with it my dad (for a long visit!), Hallowe’en, the first Sadhana I’ve been able to go to in 6 months (hopefully), and the kickoff to this year’s NaNoWriMo. All good things, all very exciting! What are you up to?