Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Zebra Snow

On the day after our recent blizzard,
I walked out and about
with my camera.

I walked the old familiar paths,
and suddenly, 
I was struck by 
something new and unexpected 
across the road;
something fresh and fascinating
in the afternoon sun!

Zebra Snow!

How could I never have seen 
these sensuous shadows before?

“...there ain't no journey what don't change you some.”
David Mitchell  Cloud Atlas 

“A man like me has no business with this substance "beauty," 
yet here she is, in these soundproofed chambers of my heart.”
David Mitchell   Cloud Atlas


“Snow is bruised lilac in half light: such pure solace.” 
David Mitchell  Cloud Atlas

“The learnin' mind is the livin' mind... 
an' any sort o' smart is truesome smart, 
old smart or new, high smart or low.” 
David Mitchell  Cloud Atlas

“ I'm a spent firework; but at least I've been a firework.”
David Mitchell  Cloud Atlas 

Hope your day is filled with beauty and solace.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Yesterday and Today

What a difference a day makes!
Sunday a blizzard;
Monday brilliant blue skies and sunshine!

(Being a little out of control with my camera, 
you might want to click on this lovely song: 
Tori Amos - Winter (From "Live At Montreux 91/92")

You've got to love Colorado!

I felt sorry for all the Snow Dancers though.

The plows, de-icers, and sanders were out
during and after the storm
to make sure that the Metro Area school buses
could ferry all the kidlets to school. 


Channeling Jim from the Back Seat

And then our awesome solar heating kicked in!


Just twenty-four hours outside my door!

And what does one do on a blizzardy day!
Why, go out to one's favorite bar and restaurant, of course!


And the day after?
Run amok with your camera!

Exploring things new under the sun!

Another twenty-four, and it's snowing again!

You've got to love Colorado!!!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Pictures~of~the~Day: After the Blizzard!

You never know what you might spot 
when you venture outside 
the day after a blizzard!

Here is a sampling what my camera saw today.
More to come on a calmer day!

Fuzzy Snow Crystals

Heaps of Snow

A Little Bunny

Little Icicles

Hungry Muleys

Zebra Snow

I love winter in beautiful Colorado!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Ugly Scary Vegetable

About that ugly scary vegetable 
that lurked in our vegetable bin for many days;
seriously, would you eat something
that looked like this?

It's as hard as a rock
(that's a good thing),
and it feels knobby and rippled.

Given my traumatic history with vegetables,
you might wonder
What possessed her to buy it?
What indeed?

Every so often I get a wild idea
stuck in my head, 
and I can't get rid myself of it
until I deal with it.

So I found myself at King Soopers
staring at a celery root.
Yup!  It's a celery root,
Or Apium graveolens var. rapaceum:
AKA turnip-rooted celery,
knob celery, and
its Cinderella name, celeriac.

Celeriac ~ Dressed for the Ball
in Tiara and Skirt

It's all Ivan's fault!
He inspired me to buy that ugly scary vegetable,
drove me right out the door  to get it, 
a bunch of celery,
and a bottle of celery seeds!

Now, I have been known to tolerate celery
in the past.
My favorite celery recipe is
Ants on a Log.

Ants on a Log
Source and Recipe:

This is the perfect teacher recipe
for a healthy classroom party.

Note: third graders do not like healthy parties.
The one time a room mother and I 
planned a healthy Halloween party
featuring Ants on a Log,
it was a disaster.
I've given unhealthy parties ever since!

I quite like Ants on a Log ~ though,
actually it's the only way I like celery.

Ivan has an amazing blog
called A Normandy Kitchen,
and he posted a celery recipe
that made me salivate ~
His post was called A soup of three celeries.

Caveat!  Ivan's beautifully presented recipes
always make me salivate!

I stuffed the celery and the USV in the vegetable bin
and closed the fridge door.
Every time I opened that door
that USV told me it was waiting
for a fairy godmother transformation.

Finally I couldn't stand it any more!
In a rash fit,
I channeled Graham Kerr*,
poured a glass of pinot noir,
and assembled the ingredients.

Just a Few Simple Ingredients 
and a Good Recipe

Not quite sure how to dive into the unknown,
I gave the USV a good scrub.

Surprise a fresh, clean, celery aroma wafted up ~
much pleasanter than fresh scrubbed potatoes or carrots.

I took a swig of wine to fortify myself,
strange vegetables, especially USVs,
intimidate the heck out of me!

Ready for the Attack!

Said Ivan in an encouraging comment to me:
"Please be careful with the celery - 
cut in half and place cut side down so it doesn't slip.  
'Peel' with a knife as you need to remove 
about three times that of a potato skin (more at the base).  
Fingers on top and cut just below them and down (keep turning).  
Rinse and ready to go."

Cross - Section of Celeriac

The loveliest and bright fragrance
hit my olfactory senses,
not just celery, but
the soul of celery!

Does this thing have cancer?!

 Carefully Peeling Celery
See Safety Note Above

I took another swig of pinot,
and chopped that cancerous looking sucker up!

Celery Root Put in Its Place!

and Ready to Go!


"Ivan ~ did you really mean to peel the celery sticks?"

"Yes, you can peel the outside of the celery sticks to remove the strings or snap the top and remove them by pulling down (sometimes you don't need to, depends on the season)," writes the helpful Ivan.


Chop, small!
Strings in Soup 
Are a Bad Thing!

Note from the Trenches!                                                                  
Don't use dark brown vegetable stock.            
Make your own ~ or buy 
a light-colored one

(light on the salt!).   

Chopped Celery, Celeriac, and Stock in a Pot

I brought it to a boil
and simmered it until soft.

Celery seeds are tiny!                               
I followed the roadmap
and ground them up smaller!


I tossed in the       
celery seeds and  
pulverized the
cooked celeries
in small 



Just for good                    
I ran the
my blender.

I returned everything                 
to the pot and 
stirred in
ground up cashews.
Then I left it to
simmer until the
Guinea Pig came home. 

"What's that?" said the G-P when he walked in.
Sniff?  Sniff.
Did you finally cook that celery root in the bin?
Smells good!"

"Why don't you try some?" 
said I who had not taken a sip,
thinking of Zhang Mei, 
the Dragon of Terror and Peril,
and his soup 
in The Chinatown Death Cloud Peril.

The G-P would be my taster!
I placed a bowl artfully festooned with cashews 
in front of him.

Cinderella Vegetable

"How come it's brown? 
I thought Ivan's was green,"
said the G-P.
"It looks like ..."

"Next time I'll use a different vegetable stock,"
I quickly interrupted.

"Okay," said the G-P,
and he dove in.
"Ummm. Yum.  This is good.
He finished his bowl.
"Aren't you going to have some?"

"I'm just finishing my wine,"
said I, as I carefully watched the taster.
He didn't keel over on top of his soup bowl
or slump on the floor.
Nothing happened.

I ladled a small bowl for myself,
spooned up a tiny amount,
and touched it with the tip of my tongue.

I didn't keel over on top of my soup bowl
or slump on the floor.
Nothing happened.

"Wow!  This is pretty good!  
It's delicious!" said I,
and I finished my bowl.

"That's a keeper," said the G-P.
"You should make it again."

"I will," said I.

"Celeriac is good raw with mayonnaise (or Greek yoghurt and lemon) ... and it freezes well,"  wrote Ivan.

I'll attempt anything Ivan posts on his blog,
well ~ maybe not kale.

To get the recipe for A soup of three celeries,
you just go to his excellent blog!

*For those of you who may not know,
Graham Kerr is the Galloping Gourmet,
and he ~ despite the funny clip ~
was a great inspiration to me as an excellent TV Chef.
Check out this short and hilarious video.
Graham Kerr always cooked 
with a glass of wine at hand!

For the background posts on Ugly Scary Vegetable

you may go to:

Vegetable Trauma

Forbidden Fruit