Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Domestic Bliss and a Short Walk


Hello again! The package man brought my slightly loved copy of Laurel's Kitchen today (the whole thing, not the short-cut copy) and I found the parts I longed to read again! Would you like to have a little taste of this cookbook poetry?
Here's an excerpt.
"One morning, out for a walk, I stopped at Laurel's house to see if she'd join me. She was packing Ed's lunch - his dinner rather . . .
No lunch pail was in sight, just a big wicker basket with a lid - quite a large one really, for just sandwiches and fruit. Then I saw the sandwiches: think slices of dark rye around an egg salad sparked with sweet red peppers and parsley, so thick she had to cut the bread in half before assembling the finished product. But the sandwiches were the least of the story. A fragrant barley soup with translucent pieces of zucchini, celery, and mushrooms went into a wide-mouthed thermos carefully preheated with boiling water, and a tiny packet of grated cheese went in alongside to be sprinkled on top of the soup. She rinsed and dried lettuce and cherry tomatoes and put them into a plastic container with a tiny bottle of herb dressing, then got out a cantaloupe and cut it in half in perfect zigzags, scooped out seeds, and packed one of the halves with cottage cheese and a sprinkling of toasted sunflower seeds."

Ready for lunch now? If you have been lovingly preparing whole foods for your family, searching out recipes that stay true to fresh, clean ingredients, and baking bread and other grainy "staff of life" type offerings, well . . . just know that you are doing something very important, very noble.
The descriptions of Laurel's apartment and later her house, her tiny kitchen and then her bigger work space are so romantically domestic. This book was written 35 years ago. Women were happily dressed in long skirts, heads sporting plain, straight pony tails, and trying to keep things "real" in the kitchen. I like that. It was before the Food Network and HGTV. It was a simpler time and those of us who were child brides (smile!) tried so hard to do good work as budding homemakers . I'm not sure if I'll actually use the recipes. I think I really wanted to revisit the commentary. So good.
After skimming and savoring my new book, I headed out for a walk.









I didn't get far because as I passed the park, I spied my neighbor playing with her granddog. I had to zoom in and take some photos of Marley as he chased the tennis ball down the grassy hill. Because I ate too much lettuce for dinner, my stomach started churning. Thus the end of my walk. I hopped in my neighbor's car and she drove me home. So fun. So comfortable. Neighbors. Dogs. Parks. Fall colors. Back home in my chair by the window. Crickets chirping. Yes, it's fall. Good things prevail.



Thank you for stopping in for some lunch, a walk, and a dog smile.

13 comments:

wayside wanderer said...

New books and nature....two of my favorite things! The mums are a gorgeous color! I just bought a top because it has that color in it.

Kelli said...

Oh Marley Barley. Such a sweet pup. Glad you were able to enjoy his sweet pup love. We need to get you a dog.

Mrs Yappy Dog said...

I like the sound of your book - I am trying to get away from all the temptations of the shops and this book sounds like a really good way to remind yourself how to stay in touch with the simple pleasures you can provide for your family. Betty x

All things bright and beautiful... said...

Lovely post Pom Pom :) I looked up the book - How do you know you have the right one please?
L.x.

melanie said...

As always, a lovely post Pom Pom, your book sounds lovely :) xxx

magsmcc said...

She was the servantless American woman! Bet she used lots of butter too!

♥ Tina said...

Sounds like a lovely read. :) Hugs Pom Pom!! xxx

Bradley Maston said...

What a handsome pup is Mr. Marley. I love the descriptions of the food. It sounds just delicious. Soups sandwiches, eggs and extra mayo, please. Just fantastic! Love you loads upon loads!

Left-Handed Housewife said...

I like seeing how things are turning to fall around about where you are. My grad school roommate had a copy of Laurel's Kitchen, but I don't think I ever read it. Maybe I will now!

xofrances

Kerri said...

I love the sound of that book! I love books that celebrate domestic delights.

Aisling said...

I periodically reread my very battered copy of Laurel's Kitchen. It reads like a memoir... the best sort of storytelling... rather than as a cookbook. :)

I hope that you are well and that your school year is proceeding happily. I am busy with tutoring a child in reading, and adding another next week. Other volunteering, observations, coursework, and much more. And... I'm tired. lol.

Gumbo Lily said...

I so enjoyed the description of the basket of dinner. Wouldn't it be fun to open it and think of the fine woman who made such a delicious lunch just for you?

Yes, we child brides did the best we could. I began making bread when I was first married.

"Mastering the Art of French Cooking" is another cookbook I thoroughly enjoy reading. (old, good recipes)

Jody

LOVE STITCHING RED said...

I bet they all love having YOU for a neighbour in your street. It sounds fun to live in your road

Thank you for the lovely nature photos of your walk xo

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