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The Real Work
It may be that when we no longer know what to do
we have come to our real work,
and that when we no longer know which way to go
we have come to our real journey.
The mind that is not baffled is not employed.
The impeded stream is the one that sings.
Some (as usual) provocative thoughts from Mr. Berry, especially in the heat of the presidential election cycle:
If the Golden Rule were generally observed among us, the economy would not last a week. We have made our false economy a false god, and it has made blasphemy of the truth. So I have met the economy in the road, and am expected to yield it right of way. But I will not get over. My reason is that I am a man, and have a better right to the ground than the economy. The economy is no god for me, for I have had too close a look at its wheels. I have seen it at work in the strip mines and coal camps of Kentucky, and I know it has no moral limits.
Wendell Berry, “Discipline and Hope”
H/T Slow Church blog.
We enjoy eating out, but we don’t have an unlimited budget, we have a local rule, and, lately, we’ve had a newborn (and a three-year-0ld) that make eating out a little…complicated. But some nights I just really don’t feel like cooking or eating healthy (and I have a slight obsession with Mexican food of all kinds), and I beg Grant to take me to the local Mexican joint down the street. Most of the time, he gives in. Other times, he volunteers to make nachos.
I’m a lucky girl – I know.
When we do the rotisserie chicken thing, we typically have a random assortment of chicken left from whatever our “main dish” or two was with the chicken originally, which makes for perfect chicken nachos. Grant makes two main variations, but I’ll tease you with just one for now.
Several handfuls of tortilla chips
Leftover chicken from your rotisserie, shredded
Beans of your choice (typically we have some frozen from the last time I made them, but, if not, canned works too)
Sweet peppers, sliced or diced depending on your preference
Jalapenos, sliced thinly (leave the ribs and seeds for extra spiciness)
2 cups of cheese – we like a mix of sharp cheddar and Monterrey jack
1 tsp chipotle pepper seasoning
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spread the tortilla chips on a rimmed baking sheet. Spread the beans, onions, and sweet peppers over the chips as evenly as possible. Sprinkle the chipotle seasoning over the chip concoction, and then spread the cheese over the entire baking sheet. Place the jalapenos on top of the cheese. Bake in a 400-degree preheated over for 12-15 minutes, or until the cheese bubbles on top.
Did you catch the news last week about the latest study about organic food? A study out of Stanford found that organic food isn’t any healthier than non-organic food. I thought I’d share a little link dump of some of my reading on the subject over the past several days:
- Consumer Reports on why you should still buy organic (when you can)
- Problems with the study metrics from Tom Philpott (notice the article’s accompanying picture from Bloomington’s very own LIFE Farms!)
- Is Organic Food Worth the Expense? (from a panel of experts all over the map on the subject)
- Frances Moore Lappe (love her) on the study
My own take? 1) there are some serious fallacies in the Stanford studies, especially in terms of long-term effects that aren’t easily studied in short time frames 2) small-scale farming according to organic practices is far better for the environment than industrial farming practices, even if there aren’t any benefits for my own health (which I find hard to believe) and 3) should it really matter?
What say you?
Excuse my absence (again) – family vacation and starting school got in the way!
I love tomatillos, but I’ve always had bad luck growing them. I typically start them from seed, and only a few plants even survive to be transplanted…and then those plants might produce enough tomatillos for one small batch of salsa.
Not this year.
I planted one tomatillo plant in the corner of the garden. I bought it at Whole Foods because I was sick of my aforementioned bad luck. Somehow, I now have at least eight tomatillo plants in the garden. Has anyone else faced this phenomenon? My original plant has been producing well and regularly since mid-July. The other ones are producing larger tomatillos, but most of them aren’t quite ready to be picked yet.
I don’t really want to explore why I have so many tomatillos much further. I’d rather spend my time eating them. I had planned to experiment with different recipes with my long-hoped-for excess of this funky little fruit, but I made a batch of salsa verde…and I can’t seem to use the tomatillos for anything else. I have a problem.
About two pounds of tomatillos (remove the skins and wash the sticky residue off), quartered
Large handful of fresh cilantro (equivalent of about a cup)
1 jalapeno, destemmed (remove some or all of the seeds for less kick)
Juice of one lime
2 garlic cloves
Salt and pepper to taste
Dump all of the ingredients in the food processor and pulse until the mixture is uniformly pureed. Eat on anything…fish tacos, scrambled eggs, tortilla chips, chicken. I really haven’t found anything that this stuff doesn’t make better!