I am glad to have reached the middle of January before the bleakness of the month hit me. I use the tired, cold, bleak, giving-up feelings as fuel for writing poetry. I think poetry has the ability, like many arts, to make you feel better about the very depressing thing you are writing about or depicting. I have found some great quotations in my search for the essence of the month. Here are a few more:
Winter dawn is the color of metal, the trees stiffen into place like burnt nerves.
January is here, with eyes that keenly glow, a frost-mailed warrior striding a shadowy steed of snow. –Edgar Fawcett
Doesn’t that make you feel better? My favorite quotation about the month talks about a food cure.
Winter blues are cured every time with a potato gratin paired with a roast chicken.–Alexandra Guarnaschelli.
I did make a chicken breast recipe for the purpose of curing our winter blues- it was a chicken breast pane. Chicken breast pounded flat and breaded, then sauteed with mushrooms and topped with a brandy and cream sauce and flamed at the end. My husband and I appreciated the extra drama and enjoyed this old family favorite. Then Don came home with fifty jumbo oysters and we were happy again.
This is really a cheat because there is no recipe involved. You drain an oyster, dip it in egg and then bread crumbs and fry it in olive oil. Then your misgivings and wonderings about the meaning of life all dissolve and you are in heaven. At least that is how we experience fried jumbo oysters. Oysters so large you have to cut them in half with the fork to fit them into your mouth. And tender and salty and briny. Need I say more?
Don is always complaining that the modern oyster eater doesn’t really like oysters. They want to say they eat oysters for the sexiness of that label. But they want their oysters smothered in hot sauce or lemon juice or horseradish, anything so you don’t taste the oyster. And they want oysters that are tiny and fit 8 on a plate. No. These are not real oysters. Give me a 6-inch jumbo oyster any time, fried and devoured plain. My mother could eat a dozen or more if the opportunity presented, even though she was 94 and had a poor appetite for most foods. Oysters. That’s the secret of a happy life.
The Challenge This Year for This Seventyish Woman is to Share My Love of Cooking Beautiful Food That Is Also Good For Us
Not just seventyish people, but everybody
Ever since I began my quest to figure out the nature of healthy eating for me, I had the idea that the real challenge was to make the food good. Unless a dish is delicious and attractive and made out of real foods that have a lot to recommend them nutritionally, no one in their right mind — me — would eat them for the long haul. And I intended my new eating plan to be forever.