Sunday, May 1, 2016

Getting Mushy

Saturday mornings are loaded with cooking shows and I watch most of them.  Yesterday Lidia Bastianich devoted most of the segment to polenta.  My mother made polenta.  She called it mush. She wouldn't have known polenta from a ponytail.  I'm going to guess she had a Magic Chef freestanding stove in the 1940s.  It had a top over the burners that could be folded out of the way and a light above.  Most nights, after the dishes were washed, that was that and the kitchen was closed down and dark.  Once in awhile, that light over the stove would be on and a pot of corn meal and water was plop-plopping on a burner and I knew what was coming.  I have never been much of a breakfast eater, but when Mother made mush the night before, put it in a loaf pan to refrigerate, and then sliced and fried the mush until crispy, I'd be the first one at the table.  Daddy liked it drizzled with dark Karo syrup, but I preferred it salty with just butter.  (I think Karo was the only syrup we ever had.)  Just think, I've been eating polenta all my life!

A strong, gusty wind blew most of yesterday, but I felt the need to get out of the house.  I could see from the breakfast room that weeds were growing tall in the Pig Garden and that seemed like a good chore for the afternoon.  Bess and I went out and I got a small start, enjoying the pleasant aroma from the few strong-scented roses in bloom in the Garden, but then decided my time would be better spent in the chick pen.  The little kids are getting pretty big and the cage in the nursery (laundry room) is becoming cramped, so we moved on.
I'd cleared maybe half of the nearly waist-high weeds in the pen when this photo was taken, just to give an idea of what I was dealing with.  These are those dratted, but lovely, weeds that later would develop bijillions of dart seeds.  The fortunate thing is that they have shallow roots and the plant covers a lot of territory, so it didn't take all that much effort to clear the plot.
It's a good thing I'm used to watching where my feet go, because I might otherwise have stepped on this hibernating little toad.  The leaf on its head was a nice touch, but didn't do much to hide him/her.  It didn't move the entire time we (we?) we were working.  Bessie is the inspector on the job.
Same corner of the pen after clearing.  Any weeds there were left on purpose.  They are the grassy stuff that will be good for the new residents when they move in.  I do hope the toad finds new quarters because the chicks will kill and eat it and then I'd feel really bad.  I will check before I bring the chicks out and relocate toad if need be.

I'd call it a productive afternoon.  The pile of pulled weeds is nearly as tall as the back of the Taj Mahal!  There's more work to be done in the pen, filling in the many squirrel burrows and leveling the mound in front of the drop-down door, for instance, but it was a good start.

It was a good day.

1 comment:

Emmy Abrahams said...

You had a very busy day goats eat those weeds?

My landlady built us 3/8 raised beds, with remarkable perfect soil..they sound small but can get a lot in them, and I keep running( well , walking) out there to add more seeds or plants that crowd my own deck..

Two men have plots there as in his 70's has never had a garden before...sad. He put in, so far, two tomatoes, two strawberry plants, and at my suggestion, two marigold plants.

The landlady bought and installed name tags for plants( can you imagine?) and some electronic thing to keep deer away. I already have at least ten varieties of herbs, flowers, and veggies growing and a Meyer lemon on the side in pot.

What fun!!!