Sunday, June 25, 2017

Solstice 2017

I carried Grandmother
          up the trail with me,
to dance around the eight-pointed fire.

Threw my silhouette
          up to the starry
Solstice sky.

Watching my shadow
          shake out its weary bones,
I swirled through the constellations
          up and out, around and down.

My shoulder-wings flexing
          while my hands lay like dead birds
buried in my pockets.

Shake it out,
shake it out,
          let the drums move me into the rhythm
that brings Grandmother back
          where she belongs.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Frittata Feels

      Broccoli, cauliflower, onion, eggs, and cheese. Some spices. I would make a frittata for breakfast. Having a guest spend the night summons my inner Betty Crocker, though I'm not known for being all that good in the kitchen. My teen wouldn't eat a frittata - wouldn't each much of anything - but his buddy and I would, and the buddy was quite likely to help cook it, too, if he woke up during the process (he didn't). But I couldn't find my frittata recipe. Past looking under 'e' for 'eggs', and 'f' for 'frittata' in the black plastic 3x5 card holder that serves as my recipe box, I had no idea where it could be, so I stood staring dumbly for a few seconds before thinking to look in 'd', and 'g' in case the card got misfiled, but it did not appear in those sections, either. A quick glance around the kitchen told me all I needed to know – if the recipe was not in the box, it was lost. Because it wasn't anywhere else in my small kitchen (it could be tucked away in a recipe book somewhere to be honest, but I didn't look. Can you believe that?).
      Then it occurred to me that I have been making frittatas – or something like them – since my 7th grade home economics class learned to make puffy omelets. I really liked them, so I brought the recipe home and cooked it for my family, who also loved them, and it became a staple of our weekend family breakfasts. Many years later, when my teen was a toddler, I ran across a recipe for an actual frittata which I made one day, and absolutely loved! That was the recipe I was looking for this morning in my enthusiasm to feed at least one teen and myself. I am sad to see it gone (though I still hope to find it tucked away in a recipe book), but I know the basic form: saute broccoli and onion in butter, in ovenproof pan, til tender. Pour in however many eggs (my lost recipe said 7, but I used 3 this morning, in proportion to the amount of veggies and pan size), seasoned with a dash of salt/black pepper/red pepper, over high heat, sprinkle with cheese, then turn it down and cook until bottom and sides are firm. Preheat oven to...425? I set it at 350 today because that's my oven's default setting, and I used a small cast iron skillet rather than my usual 7x7(ish) Corningware dish. Place dish/skillet in oven, and cook for...I went with 10 minutes, and broiled on low for the last 3, which was perfect! Perfect! I let it sit for 3 minutes before I cut and ate it right from the pan, standing in front of the stove. So good!
      The teens remained sleeping. That's fine, I'll make more later. It makes me wish I had more small cast iron skillets, so I can make a bunch of personal-sized frittatas at once!

      I found my recipe – it was in the 'p' section of my recipe box, with the pasta and potatoes. The 'buddy' teen was happy to accept my invitation for 'a yummy breakfast' (mine declined), agreed that it smelled delicious, and said he looked forward to eating it, which he did enjoy, with compliments. And would you believe..? MY young man not only deigned to taste the creation, but went back for more! Full on successful morning in my kitchen today – way to trust those instincts, be creative, and send out positive love vibrations through a shared food experience.
      It reminds me of my recent trip to visit Mom in the hospital. She's been there for quite some time, and I thought it might be nice for her to have a home-cooked meal. I made and brought her a Russian/Jewish dish called kasha varnishkas that she learned from her grandmother, which was passed to me. She ate her fill, then the teen ate his, and I finished it off. Without the dish, we would have had a harder time connecting, I think, but the act of having prepared food for her, and a traditional dish no less, was enough of a kindness to raise the vibrations just enough for us to have a pleasant time together rather than snipe and pick the way we can and do. I like being able to bring an experience like this together - it makes me feel...maternal, something I'm still learning to be, even after 13 years of parenting.