Friday, January 18, 2008

January Musings

Today dawned wet and gloomy with a forecast of rain, sleet, snow, etc. You name it, we’re in for it.

No problem. Today is one of those days I love to dig into various “projects”. I began the day with doing two loads of laundry, checked in on the Winter Garden and gave everything a drink of water. All the plants looked O.K. with the exception of my banana tree which I think is now toast after spending time in less than it’s normal balmy temperatures.
On the bright side, the Rosemary is loving it down there. I have found through past experience that, if you keep the plant in a cool room with a minimum of water, it will survive the winter quite nicely. The one thing it really hates is a warm, dry room and will display it’s displeasure by dropping all it’s needles and croaking before you can get it back outside. I've had this baby for four years now and I love being able to go downstairs and pick fresh rosemary leaves for my Italian dishes, especially the freshly baked focaccias. Next year, I think I’ll try my luck at bringing in some oregano to over winter.
I have my Bay tree here with me in my office and she seems to be doing quite nicely. Come spring, I’ll give her a trim, repot with fresh soil and give her a nice feeding. She will reward me with some significant growth and lots of nice bay leaves for my soups and stews. What a gal!
Dear Kerri of colors of the garden blog spot, was so brave to model her new “Mad Bomber Hat” for all the world to see, and in the spirit of sharing her ignominy, I finished my knitted Mad Bomber Hat and post this picture. Oh, the humanity!

Today’s loaf is the last of the European Peasant dough and I started the dough for the Deli Rye with caraway. Yum! It will have to sit and develop a bit of flavor for a few days since I still have a batch of sourdough to bake. No problem. That will give us time to get to the store for some pastrami, Swiss cheese and sauerkraut. Can we say deli Heaven here?
H and I have a squirrel's hoarding mentality. We like to make sure we never run out of provisions if we are ever snowed in for any length of time. Our downstairs pantry reminds me of stories of survivalists during the cold war. We fondly refer to this room as "The Store".

This time of year, it also serves as an additional refrigerator as the temperature down there runs between 33 and 38 degrees.
I don't think we'll be going hungry any time soon!


Sandy said...

It's nice to see that other people love Mad Bomber hats as much as I do. You look cute in yours. I don't have one of my own so I'll just admire them from afar.

Kerri said...

Oh, good on you Giddy! But I have to say I think my MB hat is much more ignominious than yours. Yours is actually cute, and you look very pretty in it, whereas I look like an overgrown, redneck squirrel :)
I think we should encourage this fad could catch on!
Didn't you keep the banana tree upstairs last winter? I hope you don't lose it. I'm impressed with your herbs. It would be great to have a bay tree (I never thought of that!), and the rosemary looks very happy.
Thank heavens you posted a picture of the latest fabulous loaf. I was beginning to have withdrawal symptoms :)
Did you make your own sourdough starter?

Anonymous said...

Glad I came here today. You reminded me that I was going to feed the indoor plants today.

I have a shelf like yours downstairs, too. And, after spending four days without power in 1998, I always will. My mom kept the same sort of pantry when we lived out on the farm.

Nice hat!

Zoey said...

Oh, Giddy, I am still laughing over you and Kerri in your bomber hats. I don't have one, but on a day as cold as today, I would be happy to have it if I went outside.

I am afraid that poor banana plant is a goner, but your herbs do look nice.

I loved seeing your well stocked pantry. Isn't it great having an extra cold place to store things?

I use my attached garage during the winter. I call it my walk-in cooler. Just today I put a big pan of green beans, onions and mushrooms out there while awaiting the ribs in the oven. It's so much easier than trying to stuff it in the refrigerator.

Susie said...

Love your hat! We have rosemary growing wild as ground cover. We have to prune it back or it takes over (grows year round)
I've been enjoying reading through all your breads that you've baked. They all look delish..

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Your Mad Bomber hat is great. I noticed most of the commentators that were outside at the football games yeasterday had their mad bomber hats on. So Vogue.

The bread you bake looks so lucious. I get hungry every time I see their pictures.

I bet your banana will live. They often die back indoors. Just hack it to the ground and set it out. I hope it grows.