No, not together. (Mike just peeked over my shoulder and said “ew, that sounds disgusting.”)
I think this has been one of my best days ever, to date. The only improvement might have been a nap and/or sleep in (went to bed at 1, Lou desperately wanted out at 3:30, and again at 4, and W was up at 6:30). I spent hours this morning at Beano lingering over coffee (a latte, then a mocha made with Bernard Callebaut chocolate) with s revolving door of friends – old and new, coming to collect sourdough starter. Stopped at the Greek grocery store for shredded kafati (phyllo pastry) to make nests (even though the Mini Eggs are long gone) and at the Mexican grocer’s for queso fresco (fresh cheese) for a Mexican-themed birthday party I’m cooking for tomorrow night.
Came home, pulled on my wellies and dove right into clearing out the yard. Both neighbours were out chatting over the fence as we raked up layers of squishy apples and dog poo, and the remnants of what appears to have once been a Nerf soccer ball and several hundred small plastic toys. But underneath all the crap we found green shoots poking through. Strawberries coming back. And chives. We burned old leaves and dried-out pea plants and paper and twigs, I got a blister from raking, and W ran naked (except for his rubber boots) through puddles. I cleared a new space out back for rhubarb. We all got much-needed doses of vitamin D. Lunch off the porch was green pea hummus scooped up with torn chunks of canopy-sized whole wheat pita I picked up at Kalamata grocery, washed down with berry smoothie (W), Grasshopper Pale Ale (M) and icy Prosecco (me). (Did you know you can buy it in individual-serving bottles? OK, it might be two servings, but enough for me to pop the top and drink straight from the bottle in the back yard. I’m not a beer fan.)
Green Pea Hummus
When adding green peas to hummus you could use leftovers or quickly cook them, but today I threw them in and let them thaw in the food processor before adding everything else, and it worked just fine.
1 19 oz. (540 mL) can chick peas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
1/2-1 cup frozen peas, thawed
2 Tbsp. tahini (sesame seed paste) or peanut butter
1/4 cup plain yogurt
2 garlic cloves, peeled
juice of 1 lemon (or 2-3 Tbsp.)
1/2 tsp. cumin
salt to taste
2-4 Tbsp. olive oil
Put the chick peas, peas, tahini, yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, cumin and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until pureed. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil until it’s smooth and has the texture you want. If it’s too thick, add a little extra oil, yogurt or water.
Taste and adjust seasonings (salt, pepper, lemon juice, tahini) to your taste. Serve with fresh or toasted pita chips and/or fresh vegetables. Makes about 2 cups.
And then we came in, bathed and made pink popcorn. When I was a kid, we had a very 70s cookbook of “popcorn cookery” that contained disgusting recipes for popcorn cereal and crushed popcorn “shake n’ bake” chicken. But it also had a recipe for something called popcorn pastels; fruity candied popcorn made in rainbow colours using Jell-O powder. I loved popcorn pastels. I still think of it once in awhile, and so this year when I found wee candy bags with bunnies on them at the dollar store, I became determined to make pink popcorn to fill them with for our Easter egg hunt.
It must be pink popcorn though, not blue or green, and not popcorn balls, which are harder on the teeth and tend to lose their appeal halfway through. You can’t munch on them like popcorn – by biting into one you make a commitment to finish it, whether or not it’s a good idea.
You can use any red Jell-O powder for this; I tried cherry and raspberry and liked raspberry better, although cherry was a paler pink.
Lots of popped popcorn – a big bowl (around 15 cups or so)
2 cups sugar
1/2 small box red Jell-O gelatin powder
1/2 cup water
1 Tbsp. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. baking soda
Put the popped popcorn in a large bowl, carefully picking out any unpopped kernels. (I do this by popping into one bowl, then lightly scooping out the popcorn with my hands into another, leaving the unpopped kernels in the bottom.) Preheat the oven to 250F. Line one or two rimmed baking sheets with foil.
In a medium saucepan (with room for the mixture to at least double in size), bring the sugar, Jell-O, water and butter to a boil. Once fully boiling cook for 4 minutes without stirring, swirling the bowl occasionally. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla and soda. Pour over the popcorn and toss with tongs to coat completely. Spread out onto the baking sheets and bake, stirring once or twice, for an hour. Set aside to cool.
One Year Ago: Lemon Poppyseed Whipped Cream Pound Cake