Winter for Reals

It is cold, snowy and windy outside. I want to eat nonstop. Heavy food. Steel cut oats for breakfast just primes the pump. It is winter!

Two nights ago I made llapingachos from the Best of Bloodroot cookbook, Volume Two. Of course Lagusta was involved in every aspect production of this cookbook. Llapingachos are Ecuadorian potato croquettes. Essentially mashed potatoes with garlic and scallions formed into patties and fried. Fried mashed potatoes! A twist on an old Chanukah favorite? It gets better. Peanut salsa is spooned over the top before serving. Roasted peanuts, scallions, garlic, herbs, tofu, miso and tamari are blended and then sauteed resulting in a creamy sauce. I added to the sauce lime and salt. ‘Twas a hit with the crowd. Thanks, Lagusta, Miriam and Noel!

Yesterday it was snowing and I needed to get to the vintage clothing store to pick up a gift for Lacey. Only 4 miles to the store, but the right sides of the roads were a mess and the last mile of the trip was on a very busy four lane road. Very commercial with stop and start traffic and entrances and exits from highways. Passing a ghost bike reminded me of what was at stake. Happily, all motorists were very cooperative and patient. On that busy last mile I took one of two lanes in my direction and more or less kept up with the flow. One time I was first in line at a red light so I pulled off the road and let the whole conga line pass. When the light turned yellow, I hopped back on the road and was the last one through. Doesn’t sound safe, but it worked really well. I felt better not holding up 20 or so folks and didn’t feel pressured as the next bunch of cars was stuck behind the red light. I was able to make it to the turn off the ugly road before they had a green. A sigh of relief! Took a different route home through the University of Albany campus. The ring road was empty and the wind was at my back. I was on my single speed mountain bicycle. Tires pumped up to 55 and it felt like I was flying. Made it home safely.

This morning I made more satisfying food. Pierogies from a recipe from, broken record, Lagusta. She said the recipe made 50. Not sure why I didn’t make a half batch. I now have what feels like about five pounds of eastern european goodness cooling in olive oil and sauteed onions. I didn’t have beets, so I filled them with a mixture of unfried mashed potatoes left over from the llapingachos, sauerkraut from my recent production and onions. These also came out beautifully. I highly recommend you use part of one of the upcoming days of freedom to whip up a batch. Took me about two hours all in, including clean up (unless you count the week it took to make the sauerkraut). No matter how many guests drop by, they will be well fed! Thanks, again, Lagusta!

Time to walk Frida. We’ll check out the pond. Unfortunately it snowed yesterday. Not enough to ski on, but probably enough to cover up what was a well frozen and glassy pond down the street. It hadn’t looked so good in the five years I have lived here. With the snow, we’ll probably need to shovel wherever we want to skate. I wonder if I want to skate that badly! Might be easier to pedal to the woods and see if the trails are passable.

I’ll close with a beautiful sake jar. A gift from the maker, Peter Scherr. I need to fill and empty it tonight. Happier holidays, thanks to Peter!

Have a great holiday.

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4 responses to “Winter for Reals

  1. Oh beautiful, beautiful! Though I typed and edited it and have eaten them, I have yet to actually make the llapingachos myself (or, as the counter woman yells to the stove cook at Bloodroot when they’re ordered: “ONE ORDER YAPS!”–they look so delicious!

    And, oh my, those pierogies. Yeah, not so much work after all, right? Yum, I can taste them right now.

    Glad you’re staying warm!!!

    • When the day is wide open I enjoy nothing more than a new to me recipe. Thanks for providing an unending supply! Too bad I don’t live in a commune. Lacey and I have some serious eating in front of us! Maybe I should set up a steam table by the pond! Ice skaters would enjoy pierogies!

  2. All looks great! I’m jealous of your cooking bounty, but digging out of housework neglected over the semester is good to finish. Getting the house warmer now too, plugging all holes to the outside world.

    I passed on the biking yesterday, while my car sat in the repair shop garage getting tires fixed and my Canondale on top. They said its wouldn’t be long, but it kept snowing the whole hour and half I waited (would have rode home if I knew then, but kinda glad I didn’t).

    Cheers and happy happiness to you and Lacy!

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