Monday, March 30, 2020

Isolation, Asparagus, Virus, Toilet Paper,

Only trouble with climbing the walls, it rips the wallpaper.

Don't know how many of you realise, but April starts on Wed. and asparagus season starts at the end of the month. Tm Barrie is already posting about arrangements to pick up and pay for asparagus purchases. Asparagus still grows no matter what virus is spreading and I will certainly be there for as long as the green stuff grows. I don't know where I got this picture from, but one thing Barrie's Asparagus never has is those tough ends you can see in the picture which have to be broken off. I have one jar of pickled asparagus which I will probably break open in early April ready for pickling the next bunch. For those of you who haven't been reading this blog long, you will probably get tired of asparagus recipes before the season is ended although I often throw in some rhubarb recipes too. It's about the only thing I have against ladydog, she cannot stand asparagus.

Hm, I have just read we have 209 new cases in Ontario - biggest spike yet - and 2 deaths. Now he has recovered I have just heard Tom Hanks caught Covid-19 too. Just checking other celebrities, Placido Domingo the opera singer/conductor. Our Prime Minister's wife tested positive too. Prince Albert of Monaco is another and even Harvey Weinstein in prison - now how did that happen? There is a long list of celebrities in various fields, most of whom I don't know, but one wonders how they caught it. I know with Prince Charles they have no idea how he caught it but he was in contact with all kinds of people prior to catching it, as was the British PM.

I was considering how many toilet rolls we had this morning and it made me think of the "old days" when people tore up newspapers to use in their bathrooms. I always remember a scene in Steptoe and Son, which became another programme in the US (Sandford and Son I think) where the old man, who could be a bit obscene himself, got locked in their outside toilet and started reading the news on the sheets of newspaper hung in the toilet for a different purpose than reading. It was a much funnier show in the UK than it ever was over here. Unfortunately I can't find this particular episode on Youtube. However, there are several videos of the original show. I remember one where the old man had a box of false teeth (they had a junk yard) and because something had happened to his, he tried on different plates to find one that fit him.

This is one of the few times I approve of leaving the tail on the shrimp although I still wouldn't do so if I were cooking this.

Air Fryer Shrimp Tempura

Air-fried shrimp tempura for a more wholesome alternative. This is also good served with sweet chili

2 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs sherry
2 Tbs rice wine vinegar
1 Tbs oyster sauce
1 Tbs chopped scallions
1 tsp white sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp ginger stir-in paste

1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup club soda
1 lb large shrimp - peeled, deveined, and tails left

1. Whisk soy sauce, sherry, rice wine vinegar, oyster sauce, scallions, sugar, lemon juice, and ginger stir-in paste together in a small bowl. Set dipping sauce aside.

2. Whisk egg, cornstarch, flour, and club soda together in a large bowl. Add shrimp and gently stir until shrimp are coated.

3. Preheat an air fryer to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) according to manufacturer's instructions. Cut a piece of parchment to fit the basket of the air fryer and set aside.

4. Lift shrimp by the tail from the batter using tongs and let excess batter run off. Place as many shrimp as you can on the reserved parchment paper without overcrowding and place into the basket of the air fryer. You will need to cook the shrimp in batches.

5. Cook in the preheated air fryer until desired crispness, about 8 minutes. Repeat with remaining shrimp. Serve with reserved dipping sauce.

Servings: 4

 Author: Soup Loving Nicole
Source: AllRecipes

Cook's Note:Ginger stir-in paste can be found in the produce section of the grocery store.

Have a great day


  1. I can remember a Steptoe and Son's episode where those teeth were used to crimp the edges of a pie. It was an incredibly funny show - but often gross too.
    I am the only asparagus eater here - and I love it. If the other resident doesn't there is just more for me.
    Stay safe, stay well.

    1. They were always hilarious Sue although often a little gross as you said. Matt does like asparagus, but not like I do. I eat it every day in season.

      You stay safe and well too.

  2. I think the more you traveled, the higher the chances of contracting the virus first. Maybe that's why celebrities and politicians were hit earlier. I read an article where a birthday party in Connecticut was responsible for a lot of the cases in that area. One person at the party had traveled abroad and was infecting people before he/she knew she had it. Out of 48 guests, half got infected and they carried it around. Scary how easy this virus spreads.

    On the bright side, if Ladydog doesn't like asparagus, you'll not have to share.

    1. Yes, it is true Liz. I guess I am glad we don't travel any more. It does spread easily and quickly.

      True, she is nuts about corn but I love it too.

  3. Fresh asparagus is one of life's greatest treats. We have a recipe for asparagus/chicken, an Asian-inspired wok dish, which we find quite fabulous, but when we are able to obtain fresh Ontario asparagus, we use in many different ways including eggs benedict. Last evening Miriam made pizza from scratch, including the dough, and it was truly wonderful. Clearly the world's BEST!!! Makes me think we could do one with fresh asparagus too! And by the way, the show here was called "Sanford and Son." We regularly pass a place with so much junk outside it resembles Sanford and Son!

    1. I have lots of asparagus recipes David - very rarely eat pizza although once upon a time, many years ago, Matt used to make it. You could definitely do a pizza with fresh asparagus. Thanks for the correction, I only saw it a couple of times. Do you get your asparagus from Barrie's?

    2. I have never been to Barrie's, but I have heard of it. I usually get mine at the St. Jacob's market, but of course that is closed now.

    3. I always go to Barrie's because the asparagus comes straight out of the ground to you with the result you never have to break off the bottoms and can eat every piece of it. Not only that it is fresh that day - I usually pick up some for friends too and I go there once a week in season. I eat it every day. Their small store is open during the rest of the year for all kinds of good stuff. Also they grow pigs every year which are fed on asparagus. When they are old enough they become fresh pork.

  4. When I heard that Tom Hanks and his wife had the virus I thought it was interesting because they were in Australia working and it is summer down there. So much for the virus disappearing in warm weather.
    Got an email from Costco yesterday saying they will not accept returns of TP, sanitizer, paper towels... Think folks bought that stuff to resell at inflated prices?
    As for the cases and deaths from COVID-19, the numbers will certainly be higher than in prior pandemics as there are now more people on the planet. I long for 1968 when we had no internet, cell phones, cable TV or social media. Maybe that is why I never realized there was a pandemic.

    1. I was thinking about that the other day Denise, a lot of warm countries, or countries having summer right now, still have the virus running rampant. Pity we all had the vague idea that summer here would wipe it out. I think it will have to run it's course and when there are just recovered, or resistant people, it will probably die a natural death. Heard your i-in-c predicted 100,000 deaths or more.

      Oh yes, I am sure a lot of people were hoping to re-sell. We had a pandemic in '68? I don't remember it.

    2. Hong Kong flu and 100,000 died in the US. So, certainly with nearly twice as many people more than that will die?

    3. Oh yes, I vaguely remember it. I suppose we had it in the UK too but not sure what happened then. Gotta Google it now. I would have been 30 at the time.

  5. Sorry, I don't like asparagus either. You can have my share.
    Battered shrimp in the airfryer - now that's an idea.

    1. You guys just don't know what you're missing Alex. I will have your share with pleasure.

      Yes, not one I had thought of.

  6. I hope you are finding someone to do your groceries or can just call for it to be delivered. You will be grabbing the asparagus like people are grabbing the TP. It is crazy times right now but one can find plenty of this gas to do if they just think. I saw that people climbed over the fences to play soccer and tore off the tape at playgrounds. Stupidly knows no bounds.i dislike asparagus as well..sorry:)

    1. Yup Birgit, friends are picking it up although I will have to go to VSM this morning for a couple of things. You are right, Stupidity knows no bounds, they will regret it if they end up with the virus. Of course Matt doesn't know anything about it. Luckily he has no desire to go anywhere. He will be wanting a hair cut in a week or two and won't understand why he can't go I suppose. No, he won't let me do it. Maybe if it gets long enough.

  7. I always enjoy reading your recipes when I visit your blog so share away with the asparagus recipes. They always make me so hungry even if I just ate lol.


    1. Asparagus makes me hungry no matter what Betty. Do you have an asparagus farm in your area? I imagine the season would be over by now though. Glad you enjoy reading the recipes, thanks, but, do you ever cook them?