Feed Them Honesty

Looking for a new beginning with words following a brief, but intense “spring” respiratory illness coinciding with straining my posterior cruciate ligament (the PCL)… Oh boy. I missed being here…

The planting season is knocking at my door. Determined this new injury will not become a season-ending affliction, I’ve managed with moderate discomfort and the help of a knee brace providing just enough stability for me to  clear away yard debris.

Happy Spring from my home to you...
Happy Spring from my home to you…

Everything that has breath or aids in giving breath, needs fresh air and sun, including spring plants.

My son and grandson dropped by on Good Friday. There I laid, wrapped in the comfort of a throw as the little one asked, “What are you cooking for me today?” The older one chimed in, “What are we eating on Easter Sunday?” I muffled out perhaps leg of lamb (my usual preference for Easter Sunday)

The three young men in my life persuaded me to cook Easter dinner. Prep lamb with a mixture of fresh aromatics and herbs… Garlic, rosemary, mint and thyme. Salt, freshly ground pepper, olive oil and right before wrapping, cover with plain Greek yogurt… (Optional).  Four hours later, sear over an open flame (outdoor grill) and cook to medium. A tasty abundance of burnt ends is what you get with deep scoring. Rest the meat and served.

and he suggested a beef roast. We tossed around the idea of a rib-eye and on the grill. Still wrapped in the throw, barely recovered from laryngitis, in disbelief I wondered aloud if they realized I was ill. Finally, my grandson acquiesced from requiring me to cook something and settled for a bowl of cereal, insisting though that I pour his cereal. Finally, my son suggested they make a run to a local deli to grab a bowl of chicken soup for his ailing mom and something for his brother. As they were leaving, my grandson ran back and whispered, “Can you make me some brownies?”  Returning with my hot soup, his daddy openly protested the aroma of chocolate while reentering my home.

Removing the lamb from the grill, "we" rested.  I obviously rested longer than the lamb and when I finally felt rested, dinner had been served. This is what remained and no on thought to take photos before carving.
Removing the lamb from the grill, “we” rested. I obviously rested longer than the lamb and when I finally felt rested, dinner had been served. This is what remained and no on thought to take photos before carving.

This past Friday, waiting for the orthopedic surgeon to examine my knee, the nurse gathered recent health information. After listing current medications, my morning ritual of Matcha tea and a mid-morning slow and long espresso, she looked at me with wonderment and said, “Is this all you take?” My list of “medications” included three supplements and a single pain pill (non-narcotic) I swallow most mornings to offset the cumulative discomfort from a major accident ten years ago and the early morning care of my son who is physically disabled. He lives life with cerebral palsy and his morning care is quite laborious and intense. After explaining my discipline for healthy eating, the nurse asked, “How do you know all this information?” Self-regulating my usual sarcasm, I explained avid reading includes gathering data on healthy living, cognizant of  longevity being part of my DNA… (I have no desire to live a long, unhealthy life.)

A Tabouli Salad pairs perfectly with lamb. After rinsing 1-1/2 cups of medium bulgar, pour the juice of 2-3 lemons over bulgar. Let soak while you're cutting veggies...
A Tabouli Salad pairs perfectly with lamb. After rinsing 1-1/2 cups of medium Bulgar, pour the juice of 2-3 lemons over Bulgar. Let soak while you’re cutting veggies…
Chopped cucumbers, scallions (green onions... use both white and green) tomatoes, parsley (I prefer curly for my salad) and jalapeño pepper (optional) to taste. Add 1/4 cup or more of extra virgin olive oil, salt and more lemon juice to taste.
Chopped cucumbers, scallions (green onions… use both white and green) tomatoes, parsley (I prefer curly) and jalapeño pepper (optional) to taste. Add 1/4 cup or more of extra virgin olive oil, salt and more lemon juice to taste.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Included with our Easter Sunday meal, I prepared a relatively healthy version of a potato and leak gratin, but along with most of the lamb, it was completely eaten when I walked into the kitchen.

From the beginning of this “blog” I mentioned finding my way as a goal. Recently, walking through a big-box store, I met a young mother passing out samples of a prepared (processed) lentil dish. Eager to sample one of my favorite foods, I first inquired about the sodium content. Unfamiliar with lentils, she had not tasted the dish and appeared oblivious to the contents or nutritional label.  The sodium for one serving was outrageous.  She informed me several of her young children have high cholesterol, she had high blood pressure, and while it seems there are some congenital factors at play from our conversation she realizes their diet needed a stark change. Kudos to this young mom! Going forward, I want to have a conversation with young parents who understand their role in modeling  healthy eating habits for their families.

Feeling a wee bit better on this cool spring morning with much to do in my yard, including a scheduled aeration. Ideally, this step will rescue our yard from the dreaded creeping Charlie, a Midwestern weed indigenous to living in a wooded area (I’m told).  In its place I look forward to a beautiful, thick rug of grass all summer. The trees and bushes are budding, including our apple, blueberries, blackberries and grape vines. Numerous  perennial herbs are breaking through… it’s time to prep the garden for salad greens, spinach, mustards and turnips. An exciting right of spring conducted by the greatest Master of them all! (God, of course.)

This past Saturday, my two older sisters and I enjoyed a pasta-making class and any day now, I will share pictures of my first solo attempt at making pasta. The pasta maker shipped Monday and I’m ready to knead dough and create a tasty sauce! In the interim, I’m about to light the charcoal grill and fully enjoy outside today.

Sooner than I want to, I most likely will have another knee surgery… Need to get the garden going first…

Grateful for life and choosing to believe all is well… In my TINYKITCHEN, still aiming for GREATTASTES and striving to help others enjoy a healthy as well BIGHEART in this game (serious game) of life… writing as I breathe more easily.

© This article and photographs are the property of J. Faye Guider Productions. Feel free to ask me for permission to use my material or make requests, including for recipes, in the comments section. Thank you.

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