Thursday, January 28, 2010

Simplicity

Here are some more photos of roses.







Today Daniel passed a test he had to take in order to do pest control in South Carolina. (He will be doing business in South Carolina if/when we move to Augusta) I am SO proud of him! To celebrate I made a home made, from scratch, potato soup with garlic bread and brownies. I used the awesome, amazing recipe for brownies that I posted earlier only reduced the amount of semi-sweet chocolate to about 6oz (instead of 10) and they turned out even better! I also served them warm and that worked out just fine too. My glaze totally flopped. I tried to use whole milk instead of whipping cream and it totally didn't work. Plus the fancy chocolate chips I had bought were totally gross, so I just stuffed the flopped chocolate mess in the fridge to whip up with butter and confectioners sugar another day and served them au naturale.
For my potato soup I diced potato and cooked them with a little bit of red pepper in butter for maybe five minutes to soften them up. I added a can of white beans and some chicken broth and a dash of rosemary and let it simmer. Then I buzzed it in the blender until it was mostly smooth. In another pan I added more diced potato and more red pepper and more butter and some sausage and very finely chopped chicken. I cooked that until the chicken turned white, added it to the buzzed potato soup brought it to a boil and then turned the heat off to let it sit until I was ready to serve it. I think that the recipe I made was overly complicated, but it turned out SO yummy. (Adding white beans to the base of your soup is a great idea, it makes the soup more creamy and more filling.)

red peppers for the soup

As I was preparing the soup I was thinking about what I'd read in Julie & Julia about potatoes:
There's something about peeling a potato. Not to say that it's fun exactly. But there's something about scraping off the skin, and rinsing off
the dirt, and chopping it into cubes before immersing the cubes in cold water
because they'll turn pink if you let them sit out in the air. Something about
knowing exactly what you're doing, and why. Potatoes have been potatoes for a
long, long time, and people have treated them in just this way, toward the end
of making just such a soup. There is clarity in the act of peeling a potato, a
winnowing down to one sure, true way.


I felt that a little, as I was peeling the potatoes for my soup. I sort of felt connected to all the other potato peelers around the world and through time. Like I was doing something that women have done down through the ages and will probably continue to do for ages to come. It's kind of cool.
It also reminded me of something that Julie mentions a lot in her book - that simple is not the same thing as easy. To stand at your kitchen sink and peel a little pile of potatoes, dice them and half a dozen other ingredients, that's simple. But not easy. There are definitely easier things to do, like use a mix, but there is something about the simplicity of cooking from raw, fresh ingredients that doesn't hold a candle to the dump & heat meals that I usually make.

I hope you like the new blog design. I discovered through my sister in-law's blog the most amazing {free!} blog design site. There are SO many beautiful designs to choose from! I even finally let go of the black & white theme! :)

photo taken by Emma in the garage

1 comment:

  1. I do like the new color splash! And good job Emma on the photo! She did great!

    ReplyDelete

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