Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Fudge success, cookie fail, winter solstice love, ...and I took a nap

  I love the Solstice! I love it so much I can understand why folks of yore  worshipped it.  While it has been unusually warm this December, it is still dark.  With less than nine hours of daylight, its hard to get anything done.  Its hard to stay motivated.  I look forward to the solstice because the steady march towards  darkness becomes a steady march towards  light.  One of my complaints about deep winter is that I never know what time it is.  I also don't like buying eggs.  This time of year they don't lay enough eggs to keep Jimmy and I supplied, let alone have the surplus that we are used to.    I had to buy eggs this week because DD and I had did some holiday  baking.  She came up for an overnight and we packed as much activity into the time as we could.  Shopping, cooking, crafting and of course the chatter.    And it IS chatter.   Amongst the chatter on this visit we made fudge  and several batches of cookies.  Fortunately we were more concerned about the visiting than the baking because our cookies didn't turn out exactly like we expected.  DD found a recipe online for cookies that looked like peppermint candies.  I'm not really sure what we didn't do  but they did not  turn out like the picture.  It took us all day to NOT make  holiday cookies. Jimmy wandered in looking for cookies at one point and marveled that it had taken us 6 hours to make 12 cookies.  If  we had been  trying to make your classic chocolate chip or classic  sugar cookie , we would have been fine.  But, we were going for high culinary art and a specific aesthetic.  We wont be doing that again unless  the daughter in law is present and in charge.   We realized we needed her about 2 hours into it and greatly  lamented  her absence... for the rest of the day.          But the fudge turned out great.  DD's fudge was better than mine.   Way better than mine.  It was her first time making fudge and she nailed it.   Hers was chocolate-y creamy goodness and mine was chocolate flavored sugar bricks...again (sigh).  I just don't have the candy gene but, its seems DD does.  She must have gotten it from her fathers side.
       And we worked on our rugs.   After the cookie fiasco, we sat around on the living room  floor eating DD's delicious fudge and  casually  punching our rugs with even more chatter.  DD has plans for a very  elegant black and white entry rug as her next project.  The girl's got class!  My next project will enhance the 'under da sea' theme in the main bathroom.   I'm planning giant pink  seahorses on a purple  background.  They will match beautifully with  Grannys  1950's  plaster mold  fish plaques.  Yep, it was a wonderful visit.
We also talked about cheese.  DD  cant do cows milk  products so we have been talking for sometime now about making our own goat cheese.  I really need to pester Jimmy a little more about a second fridge. So many of the food projects   that we want to do require aging in a temperature controlled  environment that it is becoming imperative that we become those people with a second fridge in the basement.  Of course most folks with a second fridge fill it with soda pop and beer , ours will be filled with things that ferment. 
On the topic of fermenting..... The blackberry wine is still working away on what is sure to be one of the best  batches of wine I have ever made.  Jimmy and I finally got around to doing some wine tasting of the  the stuff that's been in 5 gallon carboys ,in the basement , since we moved in.  One batch was just plaing nasty and was dumped.  a couple of others will get Jimmys special mash treatment and the 5 gallons of apple wine  has been strained off and put in the  4 gallon crock jar with a Mother starter.  In about 6 months we should have  gallons of tasty apple cider  vinegar for multipurposes.
That's about all the news for this week. Its actually quite  a lot  considering how desperate we are for daylight around here.   But don't be surprised if my next entry consists solely of ...  'and I took a nap'.