You may argue that my ‘time out’ has been time out from blogging. Since my last post, 17 days ago, I’ve been back at work, speaking at an evening on Mentoring Women, speaking at a Women’s Weekend Away, and hosting various visitors staying in my home. I’m probably ready for some more time out. Meanwhile, I have fond memories of a ‘time out’ visit to a cafe in Sydney’s CBD, where my order was delivered according to the animal on my table – not a table number. Nice touch!
Regular readers may also have noticed that I’ve been on a break from my cooking adventures with Marcella Hazan’s ‘Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking.’ This was partly due to a few weeks of relative hibernation – and I rarely cook her recipes just for me. It was also due to a concerted and, so far, successful attempt to shed some kilos and once again fit into my clothes (I am 3 kilos lighter).
Thus my cooking has revolved around Weight Watchers recipes. It has been interesting – but nowhere near as tasty as Marcella’s recipes!
A visitor staying, a desire for a simple ‘poached pears’ recipe, and a two-month look at Margaret Fulton’s cookbooks on The Cookbook Guru, had me turning to Margaret’s recipe for Poached Pears. Hers included a macaron-like stuffing of pistachios. I was lacking in time and pistachios, so I skipped the stuffing. Her poached pears had very little sugar in the poaching syrup (some recipes online called for 2 cups of sugar!!) and worked beautifully. A simple scoop of vanilla ice cream on top was all that was needed.
Two nights ago, I experienced a glimmer of hope, a light at the end of a tunnel of weakness, a taste of the old energetic, hospitable life I long for once again. I had four students, from the college where I’m working this year, come for dinner and a chat about the future possibility of them living, working and sharing God’s love in other parts of the world. They each had their eyes set on different corners of the globe. We chatted and dreamed as we shared Italian food together. I cooked Marcella’s ‘Chicken with Lemons’ (this is the third time I’ve cooked this!) and her ‘Potatoes with Onions, Tomatoes and Sweet Pepper’ as a side. Simple and delicious!
I’m not up to a repeat performance anytime soon – but it was good to keep the hospitality flame burning!
Wednesday Night: #117 ‘Potatoes with Onions, Tomatoes and Sweet Pepper’, with four students and their dreams, at my table.