Saturday, July 5, 2008
Doctor, Wildflowers and Chili
Had to go to the doc's this morning, me for a diabetes clinic and Matt as a follow up for his TIAs last weekend. It was an open clinic, i.e. first come first served. There were a stack of people there and the doctor disappeared for a while and came back with a coffee. After we had seen her, we saw her leave and get in her car with her kids, the waiting room was still full. I am so glad we had already been seen - I would not have been too happy. I took my laptop with me to write my blog and when I opened it up, it was dead to the world - I am now home and plugged it in and it still seems dead - I hope that isn't permanent - OK the charging light has now come on - phew. It is an absolutely gorgeous day outside today and everywhere you look there are loads of wildflowers growing in yellows, blues and whites. I am not sure what they all are, I think the white is clover; it looks so pretty. This picture isn't quite accurate, but the flowers look somewhat similar. Our doc lives in the next town so we have to drive through countryside to get there which at this time of the year is so attractive to see with the acres of green fields and the flowers at the verges. The corn is coming along well, Matt says you can almost see it grow. On the way home we stopped and got some strawberries and some cream for supper. Simple meal tonight, fillet steak, asparagus (yes I still have some left) and then the berries. Yum. I lent a friend my new DVD of Celtic Thunder - yesterday I got it back and not having watched it ourselves, we did just that last night. I have just discovered there is lots of video from this DVD on YouTube I will post one of the songs in a separate blog. We think the group is fantastic. We watched some of the interviews and I must admit they were so Irish we were having trouble understanding them, especially young Keith and Damian. Today I thought I would post a chili recipe which I got from an ezine I take called World Wide Recipes. Chili is, of course, very popular in North America as is most food from Mexico. Chasen's Chili Servings: 14 Ingredients: 1/2 lb (225 g) dried pinto beans, rinsed and picked over 5 cups (1.25 L) canned crushed tomatoes 3 medium green bell peppers, cored, seeded, and coarsely chopped 1 Tbs (15 ml) vegetable oil 4 medium yellow onions, peeled and coarsely chopped 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced 1/2 cup (125 ml) finely chopped fresh parsley 8 Tbs (120 ml) butter 2 1/2 lbs (1.2 Kg) ground lean beef chuck 1 lb (450 g) lean ground pork shoulder 1/3 cup (85 ml) chili powder Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste 2 tsp (10 ml) ground cumin Instructions: Soak the beans overnight in a large heavy pot with enough water to cover the beans by 2 inches (5 cm). The next day, cover and simmer the beans in the water they soaked in for 1 hour, until tender. Add the tomatoes and simmer 5 minutes longer. Meanwhile, in a very large heavy skillet, fry the bell peppers in the vegetable oil over moderate heat, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes, or until limp. Add the onions and continue frying, stirring frequently, for 5 to 8 minutes, until the onions are "glassy." Add the garlic and parsley and set aside. In another large heavy skillet, melt the butter over moderate heat and brown the meats for 15 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the vegetable mixture and chili powder and continue cooking 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the meat mixture to the beans, along with the remaining ingredients, and simmer covered 1 hour. Remove the cover and simmer an additional 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, and skim as much fat as possible from the surface. This chili will keep refrigerated for 3 to 4 days, and freezes exceptionally well. Makes about 1 gallon, or 12 to 16 servings. Have a great day.