Friday, January 25, 2019

Snow, Medical, Rent, Supper.

Having had quite a dollop of snow the other night, and morning, it rained later on and by now it has almost disappeared. Pity really, looks so nice in the park especially when it is on the trees, although it is nice to have the roads clear again. Rescheduled my appointment at the Cannabis lab for next week. Actually, after we have been to the Mandarin for Matt's birthday meal, we are almost half way there. Unless we get more snow of course, always possible at this time of year. The eastern part of the States is certainly getting hit with a lot of snow. Just hope it doesn't come up here.

Went to see the urologist who informs me my kidneys are extremely healthy and that my current problems are more likely to be a hangover from my UTI rather than anything else. Told me not to eat spicy stuff, drink alcohol or eat citrus fruit. Yeah, well, maybe. I came home and had Nong Shim noodles which are extremely spicy. My current condition is not that bad. One thing I did do was to fax the cardiologist, will see what happens.

A friend went into the super's office and read the document he has there. It turns out it is basically a long treatise about the landlord's application for a 4.8% increase. However, the super appears to have misunderstood what it was about and my friend explained it all to him. On the advice of the Landlords and Tenants Board, I am saving the difference between the 1.8% I am paying them and the 4.8% they want. Just in case.

I have taken the smoked haddock out of the freezer. Got to defrost it carefully as I don't want all of it so want to put the remains back. I am planning to make kedgeree for Friday night's supper.

The Happy Whisk, or Ivy Shorts, found a link about PAD which is my main problem at the moment. If you are interested, I have linked to the article.

I know, another soup, but it's winter round here and this too attracted my attention. Not sure what Tuscan kale is, but I would just use ordinary kale. Googled, Tuscan kale is a bit more tender. I think I would use baby kale anyway.

Simple Ribollita

The only thing better than soup with bread? Soup that not only has chunks of bread in it, but crunchy croutons on top as well. This (vegetarian!) Italian classic is about as comforting as it gets, packed with hearty greens, meaty beans, and plenty of rich olive oil and umami-packed Parmesan. A note on
that cheese: If you've been throwing out your Parm rinds all these years, that stops right now. The rind is full of flavor, and makes a great addition to any broth-y, stewy situation.

1 large onion
3 medium carrots
2 celery stalks
8 garlic cloves
2 bunches Tuscan kale
1 small wedge of Parmesan with rind
1 28 oz can whole peeled tomatoes
½ loaf crusty country bread (about 10 oz.)
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Kosher salt
1 14 oz  cannellini beans
¾ tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1. Place a rack in middle of oven; preheat to 450°. Time to prep your veg! You are going to make a mirepoix, which is just a fancy French word for the combo of chopped onions, carrots, and celery that form the flavor base for a lot of European dishes. First, cut 1 large onion in half through root. Peel and discard skins. Finely chop and transfer to a medium bowl.

2. Wash, peel, and trim 3 medium carrots. Cut in half (or in quarters lengthwise if they’re large), then cut crosswise into ½" pieces. (You can also just chop the carrots down into coins if you don't mind larger pieces of veg in your soup.) Add to bowl with onion.

3. Chop 2 celery stalks crosswise into ½" pieces. Add to bowl with the rest of the mirepoix.

4. Smash and peel 8 garlic cloves with the back of your knife. If any of them are left more or less intact after that initial smashing, give them another good wack with the back of your knife so they really open up and start to break apart. Add to bowl, also.

5. Strip stems from 2 bunches Tuscan kale and discard. Wash if they're gritty or you really care about washing vegetables, then tear leaves into 2" pieces; set aside.

6. Cut rind off of 1 small Parmesan wedge; set aside.

7. Place 28 oz. canned tomatoes and their juices in a strainer set inside a medium bowl. (You need that bowl to collect the juice, which you're going to use later—don't throw it out!) Squeeze tomatoes and crush them with your hands while leaving them submerged in their liquid so they don’t squirt.

8. Tear ½ loaf crusty country bread into 1½" pieces.

9. Heat 1/3 cup extra-virgin oil in a medium Dutch oven or heavy pot over medium. Add bowl of mirepoix and 2 tsp. salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened but not browned, 8–10 minutes.

10. Lift strainer full of tomatoes and give it a few shakes to remove any liquid. Add tomatoes (but not juices!) and cook, stirring occasionally, until some of the rawness is cooked off, about 10 minutes. Giving those tomato solids a chance to caramelize before adding the liquid back in helps to add a lot of flavor to the stew. (Remember: Reserve the juices, you’re going to use them!)

11. While tomatoes are cooking, drain and rinse 14 oz. canned cannellini beans in the strainer you just used, then add to pot along with Parmesan rind, tomato juices, ¾ tsp. red pepper flakes, and 4 cups water. Bring to a simmer.

12. Add kale in two additions, stirring often and allowing to wilt in between.

13. Add about one-third of torn bread (no need to measure, just eyeball it) and cook, stirring occasionally, until coated and warmed through, about 5 minutes more. Taste and adjust seasoning.

14. Remove from heat. Place remaining torn bread chunks on top of stew. Drizzle generously with olive oil.

15. Transfer pot to oven and bake stew until thick, bubbling, and bread is golden brown on top, 10–15 minutes.

16. Ladle stew into bowls, drizzle each generously with olive oil, and grate lots of Parmesan over.

Yield: 4–6 servings

Source: Bon Appétit

Have a great day


  1. We got hit with snow last weekend, but not nearly as much as was predicted. The temperature didn't drop fast enough, so a lot of it came as snow.

    If PAD is caused by clogged arteries, I wonder if the anti-cholesterol medications could help? But then if there is already build up, how is that fixed? But then, I guess that's why you need in to see a doctor!

    Glad to hear the kidneys are good. I took some cranberry pills for UTI health when I was having some issues and that seemed to help a bit.

    1. We got hit with snow again last night. Still snowing when I got up.

      I take anti-cholesterol meds Liz. I have to have surgery to implant stents into the arteries (I already have 2).

      Never been able to get on with cranberry juice, or pills.

  2. Haven't made ribollita in quite some time, but I always used spinach. I still do not eat kale and usually omit it from any Blue Apron meals I order. I hate to throw food away, but it is just not something I like.

    1. I had never heard of Ribollita before. Spinach is a good idea. I don't dislike kale, but it's not my favourite.

  3. Interesting about the spice and the citrus. Amazing how foods can help and hurt us. Even ones that don't seem like they would. Ack!

  4. Hi is quite the weather we are having eh? It was quite cold Sunday and Monday but I enjoyed it. I actually walked to the nearby Shoppers Drug Mart and loved how the snow sounded under my feet. Tuesday and Wednesday I was in such severe pain, especially on my right side that I hardly could walk. I am getting better now and it is colder again which i prefer actually. I have another place to go to which is the CLEO website that often puts out information about our rights. Here is the link...

    1. Yes, snow one minute, rain the next then snow again. They say it feels like -19°C. Not been out, don't intend to. What was causing the severe pain Birgit? You don't have that all the time? Thanks for the information, we have it sorted now, the super got hold of the wrong end of the stick. He is new here.

    2. It’s the weather changes and I have to go for a new Lydacain infusion which won’t happen until Feb. 9th. Pain is really bad right now...the weather again.

  5. Hi Jo - good luck with that white stuff ... hope it doesn't muck up north America too much. Glad the rent thing is being resolved. Good luck with the meds - it's what suits you that matters ... the thought of a large bowl of Ribollita sounds just right at the moment! Cheers Hilary

    1. It's not too thick here thank goodness. The States is getting a lot though. You have heard of Ribollita too Hilary, I am unfamiliar with it. I will make myself familiar though LOL

  6. I'm so glad your rent isn't going up by so much and I agree it's smart to save up 'just in case'!

    1. Well, we don't really know for sure JoJo, not until the Landlord and Tenant Board have a tribunal.