Newsletter November 13, 2021

I am finally feeling hopeful that this new version of my weekly newsletter will work consistently and go out to everyone without bouncing. Thanks to Nick Kleiner, Consultant, and the helpful team at Constant Contact. The pace of my life seems to accelerate around this time of year with winter preparations around the house and yard, planning for the holidays and the end of the year. I am planning an annual family letter instead of cards, and another big cookie-making binge. I gave out 30 little boxes in our town and to friends last year, this year I’ve got 40 boxes to fill.

I am torn between wanting to shop locally for gifts and wanting to support the sock merchants I’ve been buying from for several years. Bombas and United by Blue are two merchants who sell great socks and also do interesting work in the community. Bombas donates socks, underwear, t-shirts to homeless shelters in a one-purchased, one-donated arrangement. United by Blue is working at cleaning up the ocean and sells the greatest Bison socks. So I suspect I will buy some socks at least.

In Cooking This Week

I am trying my best to eat well within all the restrictions of our various diets. This week I cooked a cup of Millet and made a side dish with chicken and gravy, patties fried with an egg for breakfast, and used some in our standard fish cake recipe. I forgot to take a picture of them. But thought I’d give you my formula for making fish cakes, in which you can use potatoes, millet or rice as a filler.

Recipe of the Week- a formula for making the best fish cakes ever

I call this a formula because it can be made in so many different ways with whatever fish you want to use, various fillers, various greens, and spices.  

(I forgot to take photos of this recipe- this is a photo of breakfast veggies)

The best Fish cakes ever

For one pound of fish (about two cups cooked, flaked, and measured).

Use two cups of mashed potatoes or grated boiled potatoes (or the same amount as fish), or, if potatoes are off the menu, use two cups of cooked millet or rice. The cakes look and taste different each way but are still good.

One egg

1/2 cup finely chopped spinach, romaine lettuce, kale, collards, or scallions with greens (the greens help keep the cakes from being too dry inside)

Small onion grated

Salt, pepper, freshly grated nutmeg, ground ginger

Bread crumbs, flour, or cassava flour with added salt and dash of cayenne

First, cook the fish in enough milk or water to cover until tender and it flakes easily. You can boil the potatoes at the same time, about the same quantity as fish. Flake it up in a bowl and add the grated potatoes, cooked millet, or cooked rice. Mix them with a fork while adding ½ teaspoon salt, several good grinds of pepper, some grated nutmeg (I can’t overestimate what a difference it makes to me to grate my own nutmeg). If you don[t really like the taste of fish or you are making fish cakes with fish you wouldn’t want to eat except in fish cakes, by all means, spice it up a bit. Ground ginger is a surprising but nice spice to use, about ¼ teaspoon, and that much nutmeg. Maybe a dash of cayenne too. If you overdo these you won’t be able to taste the fish, and my husband, for one, loves the fishy taste. So, you decide. Then stir in the egg, chopped spinach, grated onion. You may want to fry a bit up to taste for seasoning, or just wing it. 

I make patties with a big scoop and fry them in oil. You can dip in homemade bread crumbs, or whole wheat flour, or cassava flour with a bit of added salt and a dash of cayenne if you feel like spice.

These can also be baked at 425 for 8-10 minutes. Serve with Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, or plain. The leftovers are really good with an egg the next morning.


In Writing This Week

I had a poetry assignment to think of a problem I have not yet solved and would rather not do. I thought about my efforts to discover the meaning of life and that led to a kind of funny story.

What is the Meaning of Life? Am I Finally Ready to Give up on This Question?

In my Seventies, I have different priorities

Read the story here

What is it About November That Chills the Blood?

A Seventyish Woman watches the dark ascend.

Read the story here

A few stories from October you may have missed:

5 Things for Older and Wiser Americans to Consider About the Upcoming Holiday Season

A Seventyish Woman’s — perhaps old fashioned — perspective

Read about this here

Getting Tired of the Same Old Breakfast? Try Sauteed Vegetables to Increase Your Options

5 reasons to adopt this idea for yourself

Read the story here

A story about the transitions of October

Read the story here

Finally a list of all my stories about cooking

See the list here

Rather Have an Autographed Paperback Copy?

Sure you can get my book on Amazon as an ebook or paperback. But if you’d rather have me autograph it, I will mail you a paper copy. Just $20, postage included. Email me at empowermepeople@gmail.com for info.

OR

Here’s the Amazon link to Dear Milly

Dear Milly: a love story ’til the end of time’

Published by Jean Anne Feldeisen

I was born in Atlantic City, New Jersey to Mildred Shropshire and Theodore Felsberg Jr. I was raised in Galloway Township and graduated from Oakcrest High School in southern New Jersey in the Sigma 67 Class in 1967. I attended Cedar Crest College in Allentown, PA, and graduated from Stockton University in Galloway, NJ, in 1974 with degrees in Philosophy, English Literature, and (almost) music. After that, I taught piano to local children and adults in the 70s and 80s, had a catering business, "Jean's in the Kitchen," from 1980 to 1992, then went to graduate school at Rutgers Camden to obtain my Masters's Degree in Social Work. Since 1996 I have worked as a therapist and counselor, first in New Jersey for five years and then, when our family moved to Maine, in Augusta, Maine, for five years. For the past 17 years, I have had a private psychotherapy practice in Gardiner, Maine, During the pandemic, I packed up and moved my office home to Washington, Maine. On the year of my seventieth birthday, I decided to write and self-publish a memoir about our parents' World War II romance, Dear Milly. I began blogging on Medium in earnest in 2020 and have posted more than 265 stories, including a block of stories about my catering career which I hope to turn into a book in the next year. I have been writing and collecting poetry since childhood but never showed it to anyone. Recently, I learned how valuable it could be to join a group for feedback and support for my writing. I have taken several courses and written many poems, and recently had several poems accepted for publication. Off in a new direction, again.

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