Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Handy Tip, US Politics, Plants, Flowers and Books

I have just picked up a useful tip sent into Recipe du Jour. Many of us must have pulled out the roll of foil by mistake when we are in a hurry to wrap something. The person who sent in this tip said for some reason, she looked at the end of the Reynolds Wrap roll when she was throwing out an empty one and lo and behold there was a tab to be pushed in to lock the roll in place. There is one at both ends. Same thing on Saran Wrap and other cling film products. I went into the kitchen and pushed in all my tabs. I wonder how many of us had ever noticed this before.

I must confess to puzzlement that Obama and Clinton have been battling for months now then because Obama has apparently won, Hillary Clinton is prepared to stand as his running mate?? This seems weird to us. Not that I will ever understand American politics. The most surprising people seem to have backed Obama. Personally I would love to see a woman President, but that is a feminist point of view, not political.

We are finally hoping to get our herbs for the balcony tomorrow. It all depends on time whereas last week it was the weather, unbelievably we were still getting frosts. Let us hope that now June is with us, we will not get any more of those. I usually get a couple of hanging baskets of geraniums too which always look so good and last so well. Matt complains about their smell, but they are so pretty to look at. I was fascinated at the house in Spain where my parents lived to see permanent bushes of geraniums, huge things compared with what we grow every year. The shrubs and plants there always amazed me they were so profuse and lovely.

I also have to replenish my stores of that green stuff, you know, asparagus. I haven't got much longer, around about Father's Day and that's it. Tonight, we tried the Paula Deen recipe I posted on May 21st, Asparagus Phyllo Bundles, they were very good. We were doing a test run for dinner on Saturday. If you haven't tried them, I can highly recommend them. They are so very simple to do. We reckon about two per person as a starter.

I am now reading Wilbur Smith's The Seventh Scroll which is a sequel to The River God which I was reading a few weeks ago. I expected it to be about ancient Egypt, but it takes place in modern day Ethiopia although the story is connected to the previous book.

Here's another asparagus recipe which I didn't know I had. It sounds really good and I think I will be making it before the end of the season.

Asparagus Vichyssoise
Serves: 8

Source: The Healthy Heart Cookbook

2 pounds fresh asparagus spears
1 medium leek
2 cups peeled, diced potato
3 cups water
2 teaspoons chicken-flavored bouillon granules
1-1/4 cups skim milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/8 teaspoon hot sauce
Lemon rind strips (optional)

Snap off tough ends of asparagus. Remove scales from stalks with a knife or vegetable peeler, if desired. Cut asparagus into 1-inch pieces, reserving tips. Cook asparagus tips in a small amount of boiling water 3 to 4 minutes or until tender. Drain well, and chill thoroughly.

Cut white part of leek into 1/4-inch-thick slices, and set aside. Reserve green top for another use.
Combine uncooked asparagus pieces, leek slices, potato, water, and bouillon granules in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Place mixture in container of an electric blender or food processor; top with cover, and process until smooth. Pour mixture into a large bowl; stir in milk and next 3 ingredients. Cover and chill thoroughly.

Ladle soup into individual bowls; arrange reserved asparagus tips over each serving. Garnish with lemon rind strips, if desired. Yield: 2 quarts (82 calories and 7% fat per 1-cup serving).


  1. Politians? Will we ever understand them; I don't think so. The French are 100% behind Obama and, you know, they always support the candidate who makes it to the White House. So now you know who will be the next USA president.

    Our cling foil rolls don't have those tabs, Jo; I just checked. Nothing worse than finding yourself half covered in cling foil.


  2. Couldn't get my fingers around the word politicians there Jo; that's because I am an anarchist and would like to do away with them all. (Only Joking; they are unfortunately a necessary evil.)

  3. You say a necessary evil, wouldn't it be wonderful if they could be a necessary good? I don't trust any of them. I always get infuriated when the rest of the country is suffering with low incomes and politicians give themselves a whacking great increase. As for what pensioners have to live on, don't get me started.

    So Obama is going to make it eh? Well we shall see if France is right.