Saturday, January 24, 2015


A slow Saturday. You can almost hear the chug-chug-chug of the wheels of time grinding forward: deliberately, but with long pauses in between.

I blame it on the weather.

We wake to one of the warmer days of the month -- the predicted high will reach 40F. It's actually quite discouraging because, of course, this is tantamount to March weather. Meaning, it wont be any better than this in March. And it feels cold. Without sunshine, the outside world right now is uninviting.

At dawn, I am out setting the cheepers free. There is hope in the sky then...


...but it quickly vanishes behind a thick cloud cover. I don't linger with the brood.


I can't bear to see them so... featherless. (Butter is the worst. She stayed in the coop when I took out my camera, which is just as well. You don't want to see her defeathered frame.) I try not to worry about them in advance of the next week, when we're slated to get another arctic blast.

After breakfast...


... I am determined to solve an emergent computer issue. A new emailing system (installed yesterday at the Law School) means new headaches. I get nowhere and have to get Ed who, in the end merely tells me that there is no solution and I will just have to live with a work-around.

The entire morning, devoted to solving an unsolvable problem! No wonder the cogs on the wheel of time seem so stalled!

The afternoon? A visit with little Snowdrop! She is as perky as could be. For half of my visit.


The other half? She takes her cues from the rest of the world and closes her eyes.

In the near evening, Ed and I take a walk at the county park just east of us.


We are rewarded. The clouds split into more delicate puffs. Owls hoot, geese honk, the moon comes out.


Deer cavort.


I am at peace with winter again.


P.S. This is a response to a reader who asked for the recipe for the Brussels sprouts and bacon frittata.  I nearly always make a frittata for brunch. And though I did use a cook book to inspire this one (Huckleberry), it is also true that frittatas follow the same basic pattern and you need never crack a book again once you've memorized it: prepare and cook the veggie/meat base; prepare the egg custard; start cooking the egg custard; scramble in the veggie/meats; when half done, sprinkle with cheese and stick in hot oven for 8-10 minutes. For added effect, broil for a minute.

So having said that, let me give a few details of this particular frittata. If I am ever in Santa Monica  (unlikely), I will surely go to Huckleberry for all the recipes that place has given me! (In the alternative, when I am next in SF, I will hustle over to Tartine Bakery, a training ground for some of our best bakers, including the one at Huckleberry!)

The Frittata

bacon (8 slices of thick slice; I used a pack of regular), chopped up
dash of olive oil and a spoon of butter
onion, chopped (I skipped it because one of my daughters hates onion)
fresh thyme
about 2 cups Brussels sprouts, thinly sliced, plus abut 1 c of brussles sprout leaves.

10 eggs (I used 11 and often go up to a dozen for 6-7 people)
2 tbsp of creme fraiche (you could use substitutes, but I had it, so I use it)
2 TBSP grated parmesan
chopped parsley

2 TBSP butter
3 TBSP grated Gruyere or some such cheese (I use more)

So, you preheat the oven to 475.
You cook the bacon and sprouts: saute the bacon in oil and butter until browned, add onion, salt and thyme and cook until soft (10 mins?). Add sliced sprouts and saute for 5 mins more (until soft: it took a bit longer for me). Set aside.

Toss the sprout leaves with a bit of olive oil and dash of salt, set aside.

Make the custard: whisk eggs, creme, parmesan, parsley, set aside.

Take your trusty (but not rusty!) cast iron 10 inch pan (or other oven proof lookalike), melt 2 TBSP butter, scramble egg custard into it, then add the veggies/bacon and keep on lightly scrambling until nearly half set.

Top with Gruyere and sprout leaves, stick in oven. (Broil at the end if you want that browned look.)

You can eat this warm or at room temp.

Hope this helps!