Monday, June 15, 2015

Immortal Beloved, Michael Bond, CBE, Asparagus.

Thanks to Birgit  at BB Creations I have just discovered a wonderful movie. Immortal Beloved. It is about Ludwig van Beethoven. He left a letter addressed to his Immortal Beloved which was found when he died. The rest of the story is about how his friend, Schindler. tried to find out to whom the letter was really addressed in order to carry out a longstanding debt and to pass on the estate which Beethoven had left. All the way through the movie the music is Beethoven's and it is absolutely gorgeous. The film made me appreciate his music so much more for some reason - in particular his Ode to Joy which is part of the 9th Symphony. How anyone, who was stone deaf, can have written such fantastic and beautiful music is beyond me. We have the complete works of Beethoven, I don't know why we don't play his music more often. I rented the movie from iTunes but am seriously contemplating buying it so Matt can see it too. It was such a beautiful movie.

Today I had some wonderful news. Michael Bond, author of the Paddington Bear series, has been
awarded the CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen's birthday honours list for services to children's literature. The family are obviously thrilled to bits and Michael Bond is quoted as saying he is so pleased for Paddington. I'ts an amazing story really, he was a TV cameraman for the BBC and one Christmas saw a bear in a store window which he thought looked rather lonely I gather. He bought it and this bear became Paddington. He and his first wife have custody rights over the bear. Have you seen the Paddington Bear film. It's funny and good. I really enjoyed it and ended up buying the DVD. I am thrilled to know the family of a CBE honoree even if I never actually met Michael Bond himself. Funny about British children's authors, we have three bears, Winnie the Pooh, Paddington and Rupert Bear. The latter was a cartoon strip in the Daily Express I believe and they issued a book every Christmas which I received in my stocking. I looked forward to it I remember.

Just learnt something about my favourite food, asparagus, it is part of the lily family. I have been munching this stuff for ever and didn't know that before. Barrie's Asparagus sell a soap which they call Lily Pure Naturals. It carries an exfoliant which is made out of asparagus. Scientists are now saying the bits of plastic (plastic microbeads) in most exfoliants are polluting the lakes. You know those big ones right by me. Think I've mentioned it before but do you know their names spell HOMES? Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, Superior. Matt's dad taught me that years ago.

One of the people for whom I buy asparagus told me she was going to freeze some, or had already done so.  I tried that last year and it wasn't terribly successful. Maybe I will try again. It occurred to me that anyone who has canning equipment could pickle their own asparagus. I don't I'm afraid. Only time I did any canning, I borrowed equipment and that was in NC. I am sure there are lots of recipes but this one I got from Tim Barrie's mom. They actually sell spicy pickled asparagus at the store. It's good. Not cheap but good.

Pickled Asparagus


5 lbs of Ontario asparagus
For each jar
1/2 clove Garlic
1 tsp Dill seed
1 tsp Mustard Seed
6 Peppercorns
Brine
8 Cups water
2½ cups White vinegar
3 Tbs Pickling salt
½ cup sugar

1. Using 5 lbs of Ontario asparagus, wash well and soak in ice water while you are preparing the 6 pint jars. Place 1/2 clove of garlic, 1 tsp dill seed, 1 tsp mustard seed, and 6 peppercorns in the bottom of each jar. Place asparagus, tips up in jar. Bring 8 cups water, 2-1/2 cups white vinegar, 3 tbsp pickling salt, 1/2 cup white sugar to a boil and pour over asparagus. Process in hot bath for 5 to 6 minutes.

Source: Tim Barrie's Mom

Don't waste tender ends. Can them also for bite size treats


Have a great day
 

40 comments:

  1. Many happy memories of Rupert Bear who used to appear in a school girls' magazine I used to get as a child, not to mention Winnie-the-Pooh and Paddington. A friend took a Winnie-the-Pooh book on his honeymoon. Seemed an odd choice somehow.
    I didn't know about the asparagus/lily connection either but as long as it tastes as good as it does I don't care what it's related to.

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    1. Didn't know Rupert Bear was outside the UK. I loved Winnie but didn't hear of Paddington until around 15 years ago (I think) However, I am very good friends with the daughter of the family which is how I got to know it all. Has the film reached you in Oz? I really enjoyed it.

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    2. It was an English magazine. There wasn't much locally available for kids at the time.
      I haven't seen the Paddington movie. It came out here at Christmas but I couldn't find anyone who wanted to go with me. The DVD is out now so I'll have to try to get that. The cast looked impressive.

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    3. I have decided if I want to go to the movies in future I will go to a matinee on my own and not depend on other people to go with me. Pity you didn't see it in the theatre first Helen but the DVD is excellent too. I watched it again last night and enjoyed it once more.

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  2. I saw Immortal Beloved years ago....it was very good as I recall. Gary Oldman is a great actor. Congratulations to Michael Bond too. I love Paddington although i have yet to see the movie.

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    1. Great film isn't it JoJo? I had never even heard of it. You should see the Paddington movie, it's great fun.

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  3. How interesting with asparagus being part of the lily family. I learned something new today. I saw that movie on Birgit's blog; it does sound interesting; will have to look for it :)

    betty

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    1. Yes Betty, I had never heard that before. If you have iTunes you can rent it for about $5 Cdn.

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  4. I did know that they were part of the lily family, thanks to one of my many wholefoods books. And now, thanks to you, I am eating asparagus again. I have mine stored upright in Mason jars, filled with some water. I read to treat them like I would flowers.

    So I am and they are still strong and yummy.

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    1. That's interesting Ivy, I didn't know that. I just have them in a bag in the fridge. Mind you they don't last long in this house. I have them every day in season.

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    2. Thanks to you, I've been eating them every day, as well. Pretty much in anything I make, I toss them in.

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    3. Me too Ivy. Deeeelicious.

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  5. You need to write a cookbook for asparagus.

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    1. I basically do every summer Diane.

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  6. I loved Paddington as a kid. Brings back some great memories. Also, I don't think it's possible to stop by this blog lately without getting hungry for asparagus. :)

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    1. In that case you MUST see the movie Beer, it really is good. I have it on DVD as well.

      The asparagus season is nearly ended so my asparagus recipes will also be ending soon. Unless I run out of course.

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  7. I love asparagus. I actually planted it this year. They are two year old crowns, so I should be harvesting in the spring. It is amazing how they have multiplied already. I can't wait to eat fresh asparagus from the garden!

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    1. I used to have an asparagus bed in England Maggie. I miss it.

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  8. Rupert Bear was my childhood hero.

    Gary

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    1. I used to love his comic books Gary.

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  9. I would never have guessed asparagus was a part of the lily family. I'm just waiting for that question to crop up at a quiz night now :)
    Popping by on the A to Z Road Trip
    Debbie
    www.myrandommusings.blogspot.com

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    1. Nor me Random Musings. Thanks for dropping in on your trip.

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  10. I've heard good things about the Paddington movie though I haven't seen it. I want to see Immortal Beloved. I didn't realize what it was about.

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    1. I loved the Paddington movie Susan and I also loved Immortal Beloved. I have sent for the DVD. I already have the Paddington DVD.

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  11. I have Immortal Beloved on DVD and have watched it a few times now. It is a wonderful film. I guess they could have called it Schindler's Quest--well maybe not. I listen to Beethoven's music often. I have several recordings of his works.

    The other day I was reading that asparagus serves as an aphrodisiac to women when men eat it. My wife won't try asparagus but I like it. I probably should start fixing portions for myself. Couldn't hurt I guess.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out

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    1. I am thinking of getting the DVD Lee. I loved it so much. I have the Ode to Joy as an ear worm at the moment.

      Matt will eat it, but only now and then. I, on the other hand, eat it every day in season, love the stuff and it's good for me too.

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  12. Joint custody of the stuffed bear. That's really funny if you think about it.

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    1. Yes and no Alex. It's a pretty valuable bear these days. Bond's ex wife is a wonderful person. Only met her once, but she is great fun.

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  13. Oh I am so happy you saw the film and enjoyed it so much. I am blown away that he was deaf while he composed so many of his great works. Thank you for the shout out:) I didn't know they shared custody of the bear-too funny and I heard good things about the movie

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    1. Yup Birgit, I have ordered it from Amazon.ca too. It is incredible that he could compose when stone deaf.

      Like I said to Alex, I assume today it is a valuable bear. Do see the movie.

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    2. Glad you are getting the film. No I have not seen this film yet but want to. I have to add it to my ever growing list:)

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    3. Immortal Beloved is on it's way Birgit.

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  14. I do like Bethoveen's music and listen to it when I'm in the mood. Because one has to be in the mood to listen to certain type of music. I saw Paddington, the Movie by your recommendation here and I loved it. Mother Dragon loved it too. And I know the bear Ruppert from a Paul McCartney's videoclip where the bear finds a pond of singing frogs. Loved that too.

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    1. I do agree with you Al, and I must have been just in the right mood when I saw the movie, the Ode to Joy made me cry. I am so glad you enjoyed Paddington as did Mother Dragon. I don't know Paul McCartney's version with Rupert Bear, must look for that.

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  15. Good on Michael Bond! I've been listening to Mozart as I write because I read that it's good for your brainwaves. My favourite classical composer is Tchaikovsky though. Swan Lake, the Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty in particular. It makes me want to do grande jetes and pirouettes!

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    1. It is good news isn't it? I didn't know Mozart was good for the brainwaves. As for Tchaikovsy I have a wonderful picture of you dancing around the house doing all your ballet moves now.

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  16. Pickled asparagus... that's a new one to me.

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    1. It's delicious Melissa. They sell it at the farm, but it's $8 - not cheap, but I treat myself now and again.

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  17. I absolutely love asparagus, Jo, but I have never heard of it in a pickled format. Thank you so much for sharing.

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    1. Pickled asparagus is delicious Linda. I have never tried making it but I have bought it at the farm.

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