Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Library Again, Abduction.

Every so The Firebirdoften I get an email from my library telling me of books they have recently received and are recommending. I just got a couple of them (my TBR is only 520 books). The first one I have just finished The Firebird by Susanna Kearsley. It is the tale of a young woman, Nicola, who has psychic abilities which she refuses to recognise – her job is in the art world. A Scotswoman is trying to sell an ornament of a firebird which was purported to have been given to an ancestor by the Czarina Catherine of Russia. There is no provenance but when Nicola touches the Firebird she knows that it is true and ends up setting out to prove the truth in a way that would be acceptable to those who don’t recognise psychic abilities. We end up with a story of Nicola in today’s world and Anna the ancestor who owned the Firebird, living in the 18th century. The background is strongly historical about the Jacobites of Scotland and how many of them ended up in Russia. It is a very interesting story and I enjoyed it very much.

Tuesday has been a very quiet day and apart from a news headline about a newborn baby being abducted from the hospital creche and immediately found by a couple of young girls, I haven’t much to write about.

One thing I did do, I blanched and froze a large bunch of asparagus. I enjoyed the ones I did last year so decided to do more. I might do another bunch before the season is over.

Here’s a somewhat different recipe from Food and Wine.

Asparagus with Toasted Almonds and Garlic

Contributed by Grace ParisiAsparagus with Toasted Almonds and Garlic

  1. 3/4 pound pencil-thin asparagus
  2. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  3. Scant 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  4. 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  5. Salt
  6. Freshly ground pepper
  7. 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  8. 1 teaspoon unsalted butter
  1. Bring 1 inch of water to a boil in a large nonreactive skillet. Add the asparagus and cook just until tender and bright green, about 3 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
  2. Wipe out these skillet and set it over high heat. Add the oil and heat. Add the almonds and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the asparagus and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the garlic and almonds are golden and the asparagus is just beginning to brown, about 4 minutes. Stir in the sherry vinegar and butter and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a platter and serve.

Have a great day


  1. You are definitely the Asparagus Queen! Who knew there were so many different ways of preparing them???

    1. A lot of these have been around for a while but I keep picking up new ones, like this one for instance.

  2. Hi Jo,

    The way things are now going in England, I''d probably get an email from the local library informing me that, due to budget cuts by the government, the library is closing.

    Thank heavens the baby was discovered so quickly.

    I really am convinced you like asparagus! Have a good evening.


    1. I hope that is only a joke and not really happening. That would be terrible if they did close libraries.

      It was very lucky those girls were so wide awake.

      Yup, you're right I do.