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Tossing the Turnips

April 3, 2019

Betcha thought it was spring. Heck, I thought it was spring. The weather will play tricks with your mind, which is why I’m happy to know that this is all just part of the unlocking. So it’s cold. That’s just a great excuse to make a pot of beans. Or you know, another giant batch of chicken stock.

There are some people who go through their clothes and get ready for the change of seasons. I do that, but with food. For the record, food includes beer, wine, and spirits. Actually, our wine cabinet has been almost empty for what feels like months. With my diet of caloric reduction, and Mrs. Fussy’s dabbling in temperance, our wine consumption has slowed to a crawl. I can’t recall the last case of wine I bought. It may have been at the beginning of the fall.

Speaking of which, do you remember my post from last month about the remains of the fall? We talked about the winter storage crops in my fridge and the delicious plans I had for them. If you look up at the headline of today’s post, you might get a clue where this is going.

Winter storage crops are fantastic, but it turns out they are not entirely indestructible.

One effective way to ruin perfectly good turnips is to store them in the very back of a very old refrigerator. I have no idea how refrigerators work, but for some reason things that touch the back wall of the appliance have a tendency to freeze. And this was the case with the turnips.

They turned into turnip-cicles. So into the trash they went. No braised turnips for me. I suppose I could always buy another bunch of these delicious roots. But I probably won’t. It’s time to move on and finish the rest of the food that I haven’t ruined.

Like those dried beans.

Actually, there are a lot of dried beans. I haven’t quite had the bandwidth to shell the yin-yang beans I picked up from Bella Terra Farm at the Schenectady Greenmarket. But that doesn’t mean we have to go beanless. There are many bags in the pantry of commodity dried beans I picked up from the supermarket.

I have a hankering for a white bean and bacon soup. It’s still an open question if I’ll put a parm-reg rind in it or not. Most likely yes. Because the only thing better than bacon, is bacon and an assertive cheese. I also have a few varieties of smoked and ground hot peppers from Bella Terra Farm. Man, I love that place.

The soup will have to wait a bit, because on Wednesdays we eat out somewhere around Schenectady. Originally this cooking project was supposed to be our Monday night meal, but life got in the way. The worst part about that is I already ate the crusty bread I picked up to go with the beans. I guess we can always get more. But decently crusty bread is one thing that can really turn a simple soup into an occasion. The roof of my mouth is still a little sore from that assertive crust. Thank you Bread Alone Bakery.

Earlier this week in some kind of optimistic fit, I also bought the ingredients to make another batch of Cuban black beans. Even though there are so many other things to eat, we’ve drained our winter stash of everyone’s favorite meal. So that project is on deck. The clock is ticking because those organic green bell peppers I bought won’t last forever.

But tonight I’m out. Thursday we have to work through leftovers. Friday is Shabbat, which most likely means roast chicken night. Saturday is the finals of the 3rd Annual Albany Distilling Company cocktail competition. Sunday is the Schenectady Jewish Food Festival. And Monday is the Official Yelp Event at Albany Pump Station.

I guess even if we eat leftovers on Thursday night, that might be when I have to take some time and do a little cooking project. Or two. Man, how did we ever get to be so busy that there’s barely any time to cook?

Sorry turnips. You deserved a better fate than being frozen in the fridge and getting tossed in the trash. I’ll try to do better in the future, and waste fewer of the delicious things which find their way into my life.

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