the Church of the Holy Cabbage

Phoenie Takes A Portrait

Good lord, I’m a busy beaver these days. Mostly entirely preoccupied with just getting the day-to-day done – occasionally without funds, a usable car (currently one runs but cannot be operated at nighttime), and/or phone minutes (oops! but u can always text! 3605003287) and in addition today we had five clients to feed through the Conch Shell Deli (the site desperately needs a few blog updates but I haven’t made the time yet!). Now that it’s mostly sunshine and light (with a little rain here and there) I feel about a hundred percent better. I’m even going to bed without drinking myself down. Most nights. w00t

Back to food: today’s featured menu: cabbage rolls with organic beef and brown sugar, garlic mashed potatoes with shallot gravy, winter fruit salad with lemon poppyseed dressing, sour cream Guinness stout cake with chocolate ganache, a mixed-berry pavlova, and lemonade with fresh-squeezed, tart, rich lemon goodness!

Shallot Garlic Gravy

All items had to be made free of dairy, wheat, and onion for one set of clients. Generally I try to prepare all the food identically as long as I think substitutions or amendments will turn out beutifully – and in the case of cabbage rolls, my recipe contains no wheat, dairy, or onion anyway. I did make separate versions of both the gravy and the mashed potatoes (don’t worry, both were loaded with full-fat goodness) because I kind of cry a little inside if I mash up potatoes and don’t get to immediately whip in butter and sour cream. In the case of dessert, I made the mixed-berry pavlova for the clients with dietary restrictions, because if you are going to make a sour cream Guinness cake without dairy nor wheat, well best luck to you (and seriously, shoot me a recipe) but I didn’t have time to fool with that this week.

Sour Cream Guinness Cake With Chocolate Ganache

So in short, today I learned a bit more about gravy (traditional butter-flour roux, and gluten/dairy-free) which ended up being lovely. Before today I’d been uncertain and kind of irritated at the prospect of gravy. But today, I think I did rather well, and came up with a good system. In fact, two of my clients – whose fare I respect in their own right – directly asked for the recipe. BOOM

I’m finding it’s rather wonderful to cook with children, as long as (like in all things kiddo-related) they are willing participants. Today Phoenix (our newest partner) assiduously peeled potatoes, scissored romaine, cut and squeezed lemons, whipped ganache, roasted and then peeled resultant garlic, and oversaw the emulsion process (a dispersed phase within a continuous phase, Chris!) for the lemon poppyseed dressing. Nels ran about outside and kept the spring-break-kids from shooting our chickens with their various weaponry (no, really), and every now and then I’d see his lovely blonde head skateboarding – barefoot – by my window. Nels also didn’t set anything on fire or break bones (his or anyone else’s) for which I am very grateful, as he was mightily unobserved for much of our day. AND he counted up the earned cash and asked Ralph how much to give him for grocery expenses (one lovely client paid using two dollar bills, half-dollar pieces, and golden dollar coins, which went over with the kids a hundred and fifty percent, and for a solid hour and a half kept Goblin Nels stacking and organizing and dispersing).

Tomorrow we’re making banana cake and off on our way to feed the downtown Aberdonians. We’re also expecting company for the weekend (fingers crossed). It’s a bright (near) future. Let’s see if I can hold my shit together.

Phoenie Takes A Portrait

In other news, my daughter is lovely. She is the embodiment of the word.

I Take A Portrait

Don’t you think?

monday bundles

This morning when my daughter finally woke up she entered the living room with a barking cough and clearly stuffed-up nasal cavity. Momentarily miserable (the mornings are always the worst for head colds) she flopped on the couch, accepting offerings of kitty cat and blanket. I’m having trouble along the same lines myself and thus bagged my bike trip to the preschool today. Best to keep sick children quarantined.

Mondays are small domestic happenings in that they’re the days we go off and buy groceries for our week. Our grocery needs are mostly across town. At the fruit stand (where it sometimes seems “everyone” shops) I purchase the weekly veggies and let the kids each choose their own fruit (tropical fare today: a mango for Nels and handful of kiwi for Suse). I’m looking forward to tonight’s meal: paghetti squash with basil, feta, and tomatos, blanched beets with bleu cheese dressing. We have local apples at home, waiting for inclusion in salads, turnovers. I buy a few pears for our cupboard and the fruit salad I’ll be making at the Deli on Friday: give them a few days to ripen on the shelf (the secret is to not one time even touch the pears as they make ready). With my weekly allowance I can buy a few niceties that make the week so enjoyable: licorice, dark chocolate for Ralph, goat’s milk, garlic powder, nutritional yeast.

From produce-buying back to the library where my children pick their books and I pick a few for them (The Paper Bag Princess, a hefty Dinosaur encyclopedia, and Batman: The Sunday Classics 1943 – 1946). The rain has, finally, sadly hit our November; I’ll be back up and bundled on the bike as soon as our colds clear up.

not a drop wasted, either

I have to admit, there was no real reason for me to hang out for the Group Circle time at my daughter’s class (which started two hours late today for snow delay) except I had missed seeing those children (I skipped last Thursday’s classtime due to illness). Today when it was their turn to talk both Sophie and Nels separately shared about Sophie’s new bed. Tom especially always says hi to me, and seems to relish saying “Mrs. Hogaboom”. I think all the children like me. It’s not that I’m all that likable and not only due to the fact I feed them something each week; it’s because children are easy to please when you take time to pay attention to them.

Before I left Sophie took the teacher’s chair and read a book of her own premeditated selection (Theo and the Blue Note, a great story) to her class. She did a great job. I was fighting back tears. Not because of the “accomplishment” of her reading but because it struck me how fast our children attain skills and kindnesses when it seems only yesterday you felt confused how to help them find them.

But today went sideways in a couple ways. For one, I was up at 4 AM today with a head packed full of cold again. By 7:40 AM I already felt weary and dejected, and my day was just starting. Then it bellied up and got cold and snowed, preventing a bike ride this morning. And later, after running grocery errands with my mom and Nels, it happened again. This time was funnier because my mother was unsure of the 8 oz. cup capacity (adequate for the 3 year old’s bladder) and because I “made” her take the still-warm pisscup into the house to throw away. For some reason she did it, too, with that expression on her face like a cat makes when it smells something rank.

Here’s hoping – hoping! – for a restful afternoon.

"What’s wrong, honey? Do you have to puke?" "Okay – [ blarf! ]"

So – whoops, tee-hee! We are temporarily broke. Dry. Out of money. When I say “out” I mean “out”. This means no groceries or gas or espresso for us until Thursday (Wednesday, if we want to celebrate early with a check to Top Food & Drug). Hey, it happens. It hadn’t happened in a while, so, things were going well as far as I was concerned. And it wasn’t even Christmas or anything, which we spent a very modest amount on (by that I mean, I spent less than one hundred dollars). It just… happened. Again. Today I took some random stuff out of the freezer and heated it. Tomorrow I’ll get my 5 lb. bag of whole wheat flour from my mom’s kitchen and make some pizza without cheese or something.

Our daughter is unexpectedly taking one for the team today, though. She has literally not had a thing to eat except a few ounces of milk this morning. She got sick this afternoon and has been spending her time hot, vomit-y (once), weak, and sleeping. Amazingly she checked herself into the nurse’s station at school and slept a while, then returned to class (rather than calling home for me). When I picked her up she was very hot, weak, and a special shade of milky-green. She’s been home with me ever since, and I’ve been taking care of her which mainly consists of bathing, cuddling, and petting her. Poor child.

But thanks, Sophie, for not taking up any of our precious, precious resources. Just a few more days, honey.

mama’s happy when mama’s busy

I wish I’d had a camera this morning. It was pretty blissful to hang out with two four year olds to do all our Thanksgiving shopping. Well, technically Nels and my friend’s child E. are 3 1/2 and 4 1/2, resp. but you get the idea. While Sophie was in school the two younguns and I avoided Wednesday crowds and got our action on.

So my Thanksgiving menu is as follows:

Carrots w/butter
Green beans
Mashed potatoes
Gravy?? If I can figure out how to make it!
Candied yams w/homemade marshmallows
Waldorf salad
Cranberry sauce (I made last night)
2 dozen yeast rolls (awesome recipe featured in November’s zine)
Deviled eggs w/pretzels, pickles and olives (half-assed appetizer I suppose)
Pumpkin pie (made up and froze the other day)
Bread pudding
Apple pie

Today this involved the following groceries:
Bread for stuffing
1 gallon organic milk
Canola oil
2 dozen brown organic eggs
One huge-ass free-range turkey
2 lbs. butter
Chicken bullion (sp?)
Karo corn syrup (OMG… this list is looking so evil!)
Can pumpkin
Can black olives
Whipping cream
2 quarts organic chicken broth
Total = $73

Then we hit Jay’s where I bought the produce:
5 lbs. apples (macintosh for the waldorf salad, granny for the apple pie)
4 lbs. carrots
10 lbs. potatoes
3 lemons
1 head celery
1 large bunch seedless grapes
1 lb. tofu
Total = $17

And finally, a few bakery items from The Marketplace:
3 lbs. light rye flour
1 lb. semisweet miniature chocolate chips
25 lbs. bread flour
Total = $18

So – $108 for the whole shebang (9 people to be fed). This doesn’t include the ingredients I asked my guests to bring: 1 cup dried cherries, 2 cups whole pecans, 1 lb. coffee, 2 lbs. butter (yes – two more pounds than what I bought), 1/2 and 1/2, 3 lbs. yams, pretzel sticks, 5 bottles sparkling cider, and beer (volunteered by a guest). My sister donated $50 to the effort which I took out in Portland Aveda trade (um, I think I’m as excited to see Aveda as I am to have company over!). So – it’s a feast, and thanks to help from the guests, it’s easier on my budget.

Also on my list:
Shampoo the carpet (Ralph)
Clean the bathroom even though it’s always clean
Wash bedding at two houses
Steal from mom’s house: roasting pan and rack (make sure turkey fits), muffin tins, stoneware baking pan
Finish holiday mix tapes

And that’s about it, really! Plus I’m making T-day lunch for Sophie’s kindergarten class tomorrow. And stapling and distributing the zine. And working out at the Y daily.

Today at 11 AM while I waited outside for the library to open – Nels in a monkey hoodie and E. borrowing the pink kitty hat – the kids climbed all over the railing in front of the entrance doors. Those two absolutely love one another, being kindred spirits of mischievousness. As I watched them a man next to me, scruffy and anonymous (there were three such men waiting with me) said, “I don’t know if I should feel bad.” I asked what he meant and he told me he’d been feeling the dogs at the pound (a kennel outdoors by the police station and next to the local grocery store) and a rott puppy had squeezed out of his slot and was running “free” in with the other dogs. I told him not to feel bad. I asked him what he’d been feeding them. “Cookies,” he replied. (!)

The things I like about holidays: the food, the people.

on what 60% of my days are like

Most everyone I know bitches about expenses or claims they “can’t afford” this or that – often baldly and in the face of evidence otherwise. Some I know look at other people’s seemingly more extravagent choices and vociferously point out just how easy said others must have it because, you know, they themselves are just struggling to make it. Recently a friend with a family transport easily twice as expensive as mine readily pointed out that others in her peer group have vehicles newer, better, more status-y. And I feel confident those she speaks of with the high-dollar brand new SUVs can wave their arms at “proof” they themselves don’t have it as easy as so-and-so, or that their car is their only extravagance on an otherwise “tight budget” (actually, I know a few of those moms myself). All of which leaves me and my assy Astrovan that’s half paid off and feeling a bit threadbare wondering if there’s anyone I can relate to at all besides my own husband.

Twice every month when it gets toward the end of the pay period our finances get tight. For me this means a lot of creative thinking about groceries. It means time at home baking bread and going for walks with the children instead of taking the kids to errands where I send something off in the mail, or go buy lightbulbs for the house. It means not going to the HDA function my mother bought me a ticket for tonight, as I’d originally planned to – because I don’t have something appropriate to wear. I mean I have one evening dress that almost fits, but no shoes, no hose, no nice coat, and not even a bra that doesn’t show and show with popped elastic in the band at that (my mom gifted the auction a heretofore unknown Elton Bennett painting, given to my grandparents on their marriage. The painting is kind of a big deal and she anticipates being interviewed so she has been buying up makeup and getting her hair done and dry cleaning her dress and in short gussying up for the event – I call her preparations “going to Whore Island”). This morning I tried to make it happen. I walked into an apparel boutique and saw lots of beautiful things. Then I thought, “I can’t get any of these and know where my food budget is going to come from for the next week.” I left; I wrote my mom a (not-covered) check for the ticket price and asked her to take my father if he’d go (he won’t)*.

Twice a month things get tight. It means when I’m supposed to run off 50 copies of a letter for my child’s preschool (I’m the board secretary) I find myself not able to buy the envelopes, do the printing and postage, and get reimbursed later, whenever. Oh, I guess I could do that – except my larder has no cooking oil, we are out of milk, behind on preschool tuition, late on at least one car payment, can barely make rent, haven’t even touched the debt we owe my parents for their rescue of our family car, and Ralph has needed a haircut for months (yes, I’ve offered him a DIMY). I hope that last sentence at least can illuminate why I’d walk into a clothes shop and just know I couldn’t do it.

I’m not complaining. I’m just explaining what my reality is. I don’t think of the Hogaclan as “poor” because we still have freedom in our lives. We have made deliberate choices and they are hard ones. I read a phrase the other day in the paper: “kid poor”. The author of the letter meant that all the money in the family went to the kids – their care and feeding, mostly. When I read that I knew it was true for Ralph and I. For instance, and largest in our way of thinking, we have an entire lack of a second income. This is not because I don’t want to work or couldn’t find work. This is because of what we want in our family life. We spend our money on the children. We put our kids in a co-op preschool because we wanted a good experience for them and believe in these programs for the betterment of our community. Ralph and I may be out of clothes (he has two pair of boxers and yes, they are washed carefully and regularly) but our children always have coats and raincoats and good shoes because we make it a priority. Food. Food is a huge issue for us. We may have $10 to last through the weekend but $4.39 will be spent on a gallon of organic milk. Every night our table is laden with good food and we sit down together. My children have known nothing but the best, warmest, most loving family life (with a little yelling and whacking from their mom when times get too stressful for her). They thrive and their strength and joy proves the righteousness of our lives even when I sometimes wonder why I’m the only person I know without a credit card or a down payment for a house.

Our family life is rich in so many ways. It’s just money isn’t one of those ways and doesn’t look to be any time soon.

* ETA – he did!

itemization & love from the deep south *EDIT*

Today I bought:

2 lbs. bananas
2 lbs. broccoli
3 lbs. yukon gold potatoes
2.5 lbs. green beans
7 limes
1 pint raspberries
1 lb. champagne grapes
1 very large mango
3 avocados
6 ears white corn
3 lbs rhubarb (local)
2 dozen farm eggs (local)

The total was $22. The Farmer’s Market ladies like me because A. I am obsessive about their eggs, and B. I know how to cook (as evidenced by their cagey reference to rhubarb custard pie where I rattled off my own know-how). Today while we were there Sophie also expressed concern that the green rhubarb they had to offer was not pie-able – turns out, it is, it’s merely a green variety. The pair of hens at the register were so excited this girl tracked produce. It made me think about my time at the Farm last year; nostalgic, too, to remember it now.

For dinner I made rolled biscuits (Joy of Cooking), white corn on the cob, eggplant and tomato choka, butter beans, iceberg salad (w/Annie’s Goddess dressing). My children ate everything and happily (as did Ralph and I – in our foursome Ralph the Corn Weasel, and Nels, Son of Corn Weasel, in particular seemed very pleased). I was thinking of a friend’s child who was over for dinner and exclaimed about our food – “I like what you guys eat!” and I felt a good deal of pride over our nightly ritual together.

Today my Florida honey J. sent me 2 packages of clothes – equaling 48 pounds! 48 fricken pounds! You know what’s slightly sad? My middle is too big for almost all the pants. Tops fit well, except for button-ups which don’t fit across my chest. Amongst the many very cool clothes there was a small collection of long hippie-like skirts, a garment I’ve never worn before. I put one on because they were the coolest (temperature-wise) garments in the batch. My husband came home and immediately complimented my skirt – with some grabbing of the backside. I think he likes it because it gives the illusion of a full ass (rather than my very wide yet oddly flat version).

* Edit – I made a count of all the items J. sent me:

1 pintuck white Mossimo button up shirt, L
1 ON cami top, blue L
1 ON green tee shirt, M
1 ON raspberry tee shirt, M
1 ON blue tee shirt, M
1 LS brown pinstripe shirt
1 Mossimo blue v-neck, L
1 Mossimo lavender v-neck, L
1 white polo shirt
1 Mossimo white v-neck, L
1 ON brown v-neck, M
1 ON white v-neck, M
2 tattoo-art tank tops, L
1 ON tank, brown
1 ON tank, tan/lt brown
1 ON tank, white
1 ON tank, black
1 LS dark brown rugby neckline shirt
1 striped pullover shirt
1 striped tri-cot dress, S
1 pull over stretch paisley top
1 brown Olde Navy crinkle fabric top
1 pink & white striped button up long sleeve shirt
1 express LS top, red
1 LS merona pinstripe top
1 white LS peasant top
1 orange LS tee-shirt
1 striped j-crew boat necked top
1 LS blue button up shirt
1 LS black twist top
1 LS ribbed sweater, wine
1 LS ribbed sweater, charcoal
1 lg button up LS eyelet shirt
1 black sweater shrug
1 zip up striped sweater
1 ON brown zip-up hoodie, XXL
1 sporty zip-up hoodie, M
1 brown Ye Olde Man sweater. Needs buttons. Matlock!
1 brown tie-front st john’s sweater
1 ezekiel green screen printed tee
1 LS black & pink pullover tee shirt
1 Indian paisley skirt, floor-length
1 floor length patchwork skirt
1 floor length brown linen skirt
1 brown spandex skirt with flounce
1 orange crinkle floor length skirt
1 eyelet skirt, M
1 gray rayon floor length skirt
1 floor length sequined black skirt
1 floor length black polyester skirt, L
1 angels’ jeans, sz 11
1 IT jeans, sz 11
1 Bongo! jeans, sz 10
1 Bongo! jeans, sz 13
1 express jeans
1 a byer brown dress slacks
1 ON medium maternity jeans
1 dark blue stretch navy-button slacks
1 ON tech chinos, light blue
1 ON tech chinos, taupe
1 ON tech chinos, dark blue
1 Tommy jeans, sz 10
1 paris blues pedal pushers sz 8
1 Exhilaration black capri sz 11
1 off white Merona capri
1 taupe Mossimo capri
1 Levi low slouch jeans, sz 9
1 Mossimo goucho jeans, sz 11
1 ON white stretch jeans, sz 11

Thank you, thank you, J.!

holding out ’till payday

This next week’s menu:

1.25 lb. Tully’s coffee (French Roast)
14 oz. firm tofu
6 oz. shredded parmesan
2 6 oz. yogurt (peach and strawberry)
1 lb. mozzarella
5 lb. cheddar cheese
3 16 oz. boxes gemelli pasta
gallon organic milk
10 lb. all-purpose flour
3 14.5 oz. cans petite dice tomatoes
3 15 oz cans tomato sauce
1 can black olives
1 14 oz. can la lechera sweetened condensed milk
48 oz. canola oil
1 bottle Annie’s Goddess dressing
3 pack Scotch Brite sponges
Total: $72

Jay’s fruit stand:
18 oz. washed spinach
9 oz. basil (washed, local organic)
1 bunch celery
head broccoli
2 lbs. jalapenos
2 ripe avacados
9 oz. white mushrooms
3 lemons
1 large english cucumber (local, organic)
Total: $16

The Marketplace (bulk food, health store)
4 lbs sushi rice
2 lb. extra-thick rolled oats
3 lb. dried garbanzo beans
4 lb. dried black beans (organic)
2 lb. raisins, flame grape
10 sheets roasted seaweed
Total: $20

Farmer’s Market
1 dozen farm eggs
1 loaf farmhouse potato bread
Total: $5

Grand Total: $113

lift the couch cushion – maybe there’s some Cheetos under there.

Today’s featured recipe: Asparagus Gruyere Tart. Um, this could NOT be easier and is very full-fat and tasty (kids eat up asparagus when it’s got cheese and olive oil applied!)

When I think about the fact that on Tuesday I planned our entire week’s meals out, shopped for the food (stopping at three grocery stores) – cooked for my family and entertained my brother – I feel a sense of accomplishment. In the interest of total transparency I’m posting our entire menu, grocery list and dollar amounts. Keep in mind we have company for dinner at least twice a week.

So here is this week’s menu:

On to the grocery list. Bought at Jay’s Fruit Stand in Aberdeen:
1 bunch kale
3 lbs. jalapeños
3 lbs. rhubarb
1 english cucumber
5 lbs. yukon gold potatoes
1 bunch romaine
8 oz. sliced mushrooms
12 oz. cherry tomatoes
2 bunches asparagus
3 lbs. granny smith apples
1 lb. carrots
2 lb. zucchini
2 lemons

Total: $22. Yeah, I know. I shit you not.

Then, on to Top Food to purchase the remainder of the week’s fare. When I can, I stop at Jay’s first. They have great produce deals but sometimes the produce is a little iffy. Keep in mind there have NEVER BEEN BUGS like I encountered frequently at the PT Food Co-op. I said it once and I’ll say it again: dirty, filthy neo-hippies. Bug-free may be – nevertheless, at Jay’s I once purchased two pounds of carrots there that were… so unbelievably gnarled and woodier than I thought carrots possible.

At Top Food I knew I’d be facing a large bill – we were out of household sundries (toilet paper, laundry soap, etc) and I was going to get coffee and a rare “processed” item – my beloved Annie’s dressing. Dear Lord. P.S. next installment of “grocery opus” shall include a lecture on condiments. I bought:

1 can petite dice tomatoes
1 can vegetarian refried beans
1 can garbanzo beans
1 can medium black olives
1 can baby corn
1 1/2 qt. canola oil
tostada shells
1 bottle Annie’s Goddess Dressing
1 1/2 lb. Tully’s coffee
dozen eggs, Wilcox brown
1 lb. whole milk plain yogurt
2 lb. organic butter (one to use, one to freeze – they were on sale)
1 qt. organic half & half
1/2 gal. wilcox organic milk
24 oz. sour cream
1/2 lb. gruyère
6 pack Red Hook ESB
1 package Pepperidge Farm puff pastry
Spic N Span (for the bathtub, itself told me this was the correct product)
new scrub brush (“Quickie!”TM)
Dawn dish soap
24 roll toilet paper
12 lbs. laundry soap
300 ct. Q-tips

Total: $114. Not too bad.

Now we’re on to the not-so-necessary purchase pleasures. Namely, cosmetics and soaps. I stopped at our “naturals / health food” store in Aberdeen – The Marketplace – and picked up these items:

2 bath soaps
16 oz. Dr. Bronner’s castille soap (tea tree)
1 lb. coconut oil
carton chocolate rice milk (chosen by the kids, natch)
fruit enzyme cleanser
calendula skin renewal lotion

Total: $45. Keep in mind – this was fully 25% of my grocery bill. It gives pause to frequenting these sort of stores. And using soap. But you really do have to do that, if you want to be accepted by society.

Sophie has informed me she is now “full vegetarian” – no more bacon for her. This is impressive given she is a creature who often has no way to provide her own food needs. Today at Los Arcos restaurant during lunch I briefly considered getting the fresh-halibut fish tacos. “Mom, fish is meat!” she accusingly sounded. I couldn’t really argue of course. I had a cheese enchilada, rice, and beans.

beans are my friends, and i say this without sarcasm

We have a unique situation this week as I had thought Ralph was getting paid on the 6th – and it turns out it’s the 10th. Four more days of scraping by and not paying bills when I said I would (tee hee!). This actually coincides nicely with the offset time period I was planning our weekly menu. Without further ado, here is our attempt to be vegetarian, economical, tasty, and easy:

(You may notice my life consists of a few meals a week of Mexican food. Fuck you.)

And for this, the grocery list (all purchased yesterday):

1 head cabbage
1/2 head red cabbage
1 lb. jalapenos
1 lb. carrots
1 large bunch broccoli
1 head garlic
1 lemmon
2 serrano chiles
1 bunch green onions
2 lb. green grapes
2 cans medium olives
1 can kidney beans, 16 oz.
1 can navy beans, 16 oz.
5 lb peanut butter (no sugar added)
3 cans vegetable broth, 14 oz.
1 can green chile enchilada sauce, 19 oz.
1 large can chunky organic tomato sauce (1 lb. 12 oz)
1 lb. bag tortilla chips
1 dozen eggs, brown organic
14 oz. firm tofu
5 oz. shredded parmesan cheese
2 lb monterey jack cheese
1 lb. rigatoni pasta
1 pint sour cream
50 corn tortillas (2 lb. 14 oz.)
1/2 lb nutritional yeast, large flake
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1/3 lb. white figs, dried
2 lbs. great northern beans, dried
2 lbs. pinto beans, dried organic

The total for everything was $67. Sixty-seven dollars for quality groceries for a week! Now, I will be buying a few odds and ends – I think milk and eggs perhaps. I’ll make sure to post the full weekly total when I have it.

Tonight for our company I made the No Mas Carne Enchiladas, chile relleno, and Hogaboom Trademark Roasted Jalapeños.

My brother teases me on the phone tonight (we totally have matching Swatch phones!) that my enchiladas (which I accidentally called “vegan” because, well, they are) aren’t any good. First off, I had Ralph drive him over a plateful to prove that little monstrerd wrong. Secondly, there are two types of veg*n food in life: the kind that leave you barely full, vaguely pissy, and longing for real food – and the kind that is delicious and does not leave you ruminating on what’s lacking in the meal but rather energized by the goodness of the fare. So help me God, I don’t believe I make that first type and I willingly accept the daily challenge to make the second. Even Brother Ass himself reluctantly agreed my food is not bland hippie fare and has variety – although he then went on to say I will soon be making Assy Veggie Loaf. I didn’t think I’d say this past the early nineties, but Whatever.