Episode, with ginger ale

I’m constantly being shown, of late, that there is indeed a reason for everything.  To wit.  Last week I was possessed by the notion that I simply HAD to put a roll of paper towels in the car.  So yesterday, when we were on an expotition of sorts, and the Partner asked for some ginger ale?  And that ginger ale bottle opened quietly at first and then at the last minute? Sprayed assertively all over everything?  I was prepared, Gentle Reader.

Yes, and prepared to go forth sopping wet with ginger ale and see some incredible things.  An enormous Tom turkey, in a wooded grassy spot, displaying for a female.  *I* thought she was playing a bit coy, but the Partner thought she was interested. ( I filed this away for future cogitation- the difference in how the sexes perceive these, shall we say, provocative encounters.)   Then, above a bend in a river, tiny beautiful swifts, also engaged in springtime activities,  mating in mid-air, plummeting down precipitously joined, separating right at the water.

It was interesting to note, once again, what a profound restorative nature is.  Things move along.  I looked appreciatively, and perhaps a bit apprehensively, at the garden dew this morning after watching COSMOS on television last night, too.  Those cute little eight legged orange things that look sort of like bears!  All those things we looked at through  high school science microscopes!  All right in there living, moving, eating, everything you can imagine, right in a teeny tiny dewdrop.   The enormity of it all is actually uplifting, especially when one begins to get bogged down in more mundane reality, such as everything all around us in the world seeming as though it is about to implode.  The reality of nature is that it keeps going, keeps finding what works best to maintain life, and does that.

Which is what we all should do, probably.  So, during this winter’s  black hole episode as usual it has been cooking that has ultimately pulled me out of the fishy deeps onto the developing legs of dry land.  You can ponder alot of things while weeding, and you can also do a certain helpful mental calisthenic while attempting a recipe you may not think you can pull off.   The thing about cooking anything, really, in terms of a meal, is you have to get several things to appear all at once.  Lately it has been hard for me to accomplish that- almost as though some piece of my head is MIA.  Anyway, I’ve made a couple of things lately that gave me hope.  Thing the first, a recreation of a restaurant dish, roasted vegetables in phyllo dough with a leek coulis.  Thing the second, a thing I love above many others, was chiles rellenos.

Neither of those things is particularly difficult, really, just a matter of confidence with the ingredients. (“Just”)  But the Partner recently mentioned remembering how his grandmother made rellenos.  I thought about it, looked up a recipe, and felt a light dawning on the whole relleno issue.  How, I used to wonder, do they ever get a whole chile into that perfectly fluffy delicious fluff of fluffy coating? (Did I mention fluffy? and crisp? and heavenly?)  Surely there is some magic to it.  Well.  The magic is called Separating The Eggs, and a careful addition of yolk and small amount of flour to the whipped whites.  Then you lay a bit of the mixture in a heated pan, lay your prepared chile (which is to say, roasted, peeled, and stuffed- I used cheese although not the cheese I made that day) atop, then spoon more of the egg fluff over the chile.  Flip when browned on one side, which happens fairly soon.  Brown the other side.  (No dipping  in batter and deep frying required at all, and in fact, to my mind this method is superior to the deep fry way. Since it’s fluffy.)   Eat with refried beans and you are in heaven.  Or at least we were.  We were able to feel very virtuous indeed since the ingredients, including the cheese we used, were local.  I may still plant some Anaheim chiles just for this purpose, since the seeds I am starting are productive of fruits, in theory, hot enough to take the roof of your head off.  Those are good stuffed, too, and rolled in tacos.

Anyway.  Devote yourself to small things every day and you will see miracles- it’s true. Why we don’t all do this is a mystery to me.


3 responses to this post.

  1. I really like the sound of that chile rellenos dish! Might look it up.


    • I am SO HAPPY to see your blog! this is great. And the recipe I used is from Rick Bayless, probably online. Anyway, roast chiles, let rest, remove charred skin and slit side of chile enough to remove seeds. Then fill- anything you like, we used cheese. Everything room temp. Separate eggs.Then, using a one egg, one chile ratio, beat the egg whites with a bit of salt til soft peaks, add yolks 1 at a time w/1 T. flour, beat just til flour absorbed. THEN, spoon part of the batter into a heated large skillet with (olive/grapeseed- your choice) oil, lay chile atop, put more batter over. It takes maybe 3 minutes to brown one side, flip & brown, and there you are. Refried beans are a good side.


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