Monday, April 12, 2010

Whatever gets in the way...do something with it

 I'm busier than a cat with diarreah; two digging two covering up; and two looking for new territory.

All the gardens are planted...including Mama's, for the most part..."most part" being the operative words, here.

Gardens are always a work in progress, I started planting Onions and Strawberries in November... and they are all doing fine. I

I always have the tendency to think I'm planting for a Third World Country. Janice, the practical one, reminds me someone has to render most of the food stuff into the "usuable and storable" category. That's usually her.

My growing up years in Georgia were filled with helping Mama can. I especially like to help make wild plum, or May Haw jelly. I did most of the canning in the West Virginia years, but Janice is so much better at it.
To watch Janice cook, can, or feed the masses is a thing of beauty and a joy forever. She makes it look so effortless. Her prowess in the kitchen is acknowledged by hundreds of my always hungry musician friends, my daughters and their friends, and anyone who has a food question. Her son call weekly for a cooking lesson.

Bobby Baer sang a song in the early 70"s called TheWonderful Soup Stone. It was composed by Shel  Silverstein  and  paraphrases an old Grimm's Fairy Tale. The jist of the song being that a hungry soldier puts a stone put in  pot of water, and tells the amazed villagers he is making stone soup, but it would be better if it had a bit  chicken, and celery, or what ever is available. He feeds the people of the village on stone soup, and they are amazed at how good stone soup can be. I hear that in Europe, there is a soupstone that is put in thick soups to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pots.

That's the way Janice cooks. She peruses a dozen cookbooks from churches, volunteer fire halls, fraternal organization, and other cookbooks her mother and grandmothers have collected and contributed to for the past 100 years. Based on ingredients available, she comes up with a great meal combining two or three recipes, and her basic cooking instincts. Results are that everyone gets fed, and fed well.

I'm on my way to plant the purple hull  peas, and stretch irrigation for the watermellons and cataloupes... plow under the last fall greens and put up the trellis for the Florida Butter Beans and Rattlesnake Beans to climb. I know there is something else...it'll be painfully obvious what I didn't do today by dark thirty.

One cold rainy December evening, Jancie Faye will have ingredients to work with, and her wonderful soup stone will be in the pot, a little music, good friends, a fire in the woodstove...That's what I talking about!

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