Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Harvest Time

The lettuce is gone.

The last salad from home grown leaves was two or three weeks ago.

We did make one batch of cream of romaine soup a lot like that from Chalet Suzanne.

Now a new harvest is kicking in.

lopez harvest 082518 00000

And these things get used in all kinds of ways.

One of the best is the tomato tarte.

lopez tomato tarte 082518 00001

That’s how it looks while under construction.

Here is what it looks like after completion and cooking.

lopez tomato tarte 082518 00000

No pictures, but the cucumbers are great marinated in half water, half white vinegar and a little sugar.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

The Great Telescope Of Time

Recently we have been binge watching (one, two or three episodes per watch) Downton Abbey.

We just completed episode three of the final season.

It’s 1925.

And social norms are crashing to the post Great War ground with alarming regularity.

For instance, in episode three, Lady Edith has shocked everyone in sight by staying unaccompanied and alone in her London flat.

That is thought to be a component of the end of civilization as it was then known.

The great telescope of time enters the story here.

It took me from 1925 to now.


This morning I listened to “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me”.

I heard Jeff Tweedy (Uncle Tupelo, Wilko) describe the ceremonial, but surgically actual circumcision he underwent to join the Jewish faith.

Then I heard about a new dating method where the participants sleep for four nights in the same tee shirt and then seal it in a ziplock bag and take it to the dating meeting.

The participants all smell on another’s tee shirts and dating selections are made.

Peter Sagal observed “so now humans a doing it doggie style”.

I was entertained.

But I wondered what the Granthams would have made of all of that.

Then the telescope of time intervened and took me forward to 2125.

There was some momentary interference, static and fire and fury as I passed through the next 107 years: something to do with the crumbling of the Western Alliance and the return to local barter economics; but then it all cleared; that had all been alternate facts and we had all muddled through the donnie era.

I saw what was going on.

It wasn’t pretty.

I couldn’t help but wonder what the Granthams would have thought about it.

Because I wondered how it all could have gone so far to hell.

And I had survived the tee shirt smelling mating phase of civilization.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Lopez Island Zucchini Soup

Four cups of broth (I use Better Than Bouillon organic vegetable base; you need a kettle, or a Pyrex measuring cup that can hold four cups)

Three and a little more pounds of zucchini

One medium yellow onion

Two big jalapeno peppers – or three medium ones; or you can use a cup of chopped basil instead.

A head of celery (I cut it into multiple slices from the leaves back toward the heart; I use probably a cup or more of the chunks)

A couple cloves of garlic

One medium potato (I use Yukon Gold type)


A big kettle

Put some olive oil in the kettle


Dice the onion


Chop the celery chunks


Slice the garlic into thin slices


Dice the potato


Put the celery, potato, garlic and onion in the kettle and stir around to distribute the olive oil on all the ingredients


If you have a glass lid that fits the kettle, use that so you can see how the sauté is going, otherwise cover with whatever lid you have and check frequently after you have put the thing cooking on low. It takes about twenty five minutes. I start it out on high to get it started and then to low.

Slice the zucchini


Cut the jalapenos in half lengthwise and remove the seeds and pulp; then cut them into crescents.



When the celery, onion, garlic and potato are par cooked – don’t caramelize – put the zucchini, jalapenos and broth into the kettle and cook until the zucchini is just cooked, not sloppy. Stir the mix several times during cooking. When the center portion is soft but not falling out the rest will be just done, which is what you want. This takes a little less than forty minutes on medium for a while and then on low.


Using an immersion blender blend the mix until it is a silky texture.


This makes a lot of soup but it’s good enough that you will want to eat it more than once, or invite people to join you.

We have two Pyrex utility bowls with plastic covers that we store it in. It lasts in the refrigerator for three or four days.

We have never had it last any longer than that.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Baby Mugabe

Surprise, surprise: Mnangagwa wins the presidential election.

Anyone with any sense always knew that that would be the case.

So what is the hoorah all about?

Zimbabwe never had any change likely.

Such as becoming a democracy.

Bobbie was there for a lot of years.

And he ran the economy into several meters below the ground.

So who cares?

That one of the African  pseudo democracies  might become a real democracy?

Apparently only a lot of Zambezians.

How really, really sad.