As for the quilting, three of the four rows of blocks are finished now. Just the three flamingos and two palm trees at the top remain...and the border, of course.
When I finished the bottom row of blocks yesterday, I took it off the machine and downstairs to the living room where the soft lighting from the windows seems to be the best place to see the quilting. As I said earlier, I'm just doing simple quilting on this by outlining the appliques and blocks, and then adding ripples of water around the flamingos' legs. It's probably a little easier to see it on the quilt back.
My quilt inspectors were absent for this partial finish. Nap preparation was taking higher priority.
That seemed like a good idea to me too, and so I joined him in that endeavor.
Yesterday's assault on the vegetables gave me a leg up on the greens. When I picked up our share on Tuesday, one of our farmers pointed out how beautiful the beet greens were and said she hoped people were eating the greens. A little too quickly, I replied that I usually make pesto from the beet greens, and then realized that wasn't what she had in mind. After giving it some thought, I realized she was right. The beet greens were beautiful, with nary an insect bite. As I was unpacking the veggies, I noticed the turnip greens were equally beautiful...and the radish greens too.
Last night I tried this "any greens" saute. I used my cast iron skillet and a little olive oil and first sauteed some minced shallot and garlic scapes. Then I started throwing in the beet greens and turnip greens a little at a time. As each bunch wilted down and made room in the pan, I added a little more. When they were all in the pan, I added a little salt, then a tablespoon and a half of cider vinegar and a tiny sprinkling of red pepper flakes and voila! (Voila! is our Victory over Vegetables cry here at the Three Cats Ranch, with arms raised "touchdown" style.)
And these were really tasty. I'll definitely make this again. Mike and I are pretty easy-going when it comes to food with very few things we won't eat. Mike is dead set against Brussels sprouts, and I'm dead set against lima beans. Those are our only we-don't-negotiate-with-terrorist foods. (Everyone has something.) When it comes to greens, I'd say we're both suspicious. We weren't raised on greens, and so we're having to acquire a taste for them. Just now I looked up the nutritive value of greens to see whether this taste acquisition was worth the effort. There is a wealth of information about this, including rankings of which greens are healthiest. The rankings are wildly variable, depending on who's doing the ranking. Of the websites I browsed this one seemed to be the most objective and gave the most information about the nutritive value of greens. Consider me sold. There was a little bit leftover from last night's dish, and I'm going to throw them into my scrambled eggs for breakfast this morning.
When I made the dish above, I wasn't exactly sure how to prepare them for cooking. Some greens-- collards, kale, and chard, for example--have a thick center rib that is tough and fibrous and (to my tender palate) not appetizing at all. Some people chop them up and pickle them. I've tried that and found it not worth the effort. The beet greens and turnip greens had a tender rib, and so I left that in, but cut off the tough stems below the leaf. Those went into a bin where I keep cuttings and peelings for making vegetable stock when enough accumulate. That worked great, but I'll still cut the leaves cross-wise into two inch-wide ribbons next time around. It'll make them easier to eat.
Also, we made short work of the broccoli by trying this recipe from Smitten Kitchen. Here's the picture from her website...hers turned out prettier than mine.
Mike and I agreed that this was a new take on broccoli, and I can totally recommend the dipping sauce. Think of it as the icing on the cake.
This morning I spent some more time on the Written in Thread piece, and I'm about 25% of the way around the edge now.
This will be going with us to the beach this weekend. As I mentioned yesterday, we're heading over there for the weekend to celebrate our 41st wedding anniversary on Tuesday. That means I'm going to spend the morning packing the food and my own clothing and what-not. It shouldn't take long because it's just a weekend trip.
The laptop is staying at home...I think it has other plans...and so I won't be blogging again until Monday or Tuesday. It's going to be a good weekend, and I hope you have a good weekend too.