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Mustard

We had a snow day on Sunday. No church. No walk. (Superbowl for hubby, though – the TV wasn’t snowed in.)

I used the gift of those extra hours to tidy up my gmail and in the process came across a poetry prompt that I couldn’t resist. So I also wrote a poem.

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Mustard

Seeds the size of faith
ground and added to young wine
became the fiery condiment
must-ardens*

Sauce as ancient as Indus and Rome,
modern French’s, dyed paprika and turmeric,
drips from every summer hotdog
stains every childhood shirt.

Hulled or whole-grained, sophisticated mustard
mixes congenially with vinegar, wine, water
lemon juice, whiskey, beer; remains
a wholesome but tart foil to ham, chicken, cheese.

Bavarian or Dijon, sweet or hot
honeyed, spiced, fruited, or Poupon
yellow to brown this world citizen
is welcome at tables on every continent.

A jar of French’s still lives in my Canadian fridge—
faithful standby for sausages, wieners, mayonnaise
parson at the emulsification nuptials of oil and vinegar
and a spread for a 5-year-old’s favorite sandwich.

© 2017 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

* How it came to be called “mustard”:

The first element is ultimately from Latin mustum, (“must,” young wine) – the condiment was originally prepared by making the ground seeds into a paste with must. The second element comes also from Latin ardens (hot, flaming).

Source: Wikipedia.

The post that contains the prompt: “Eating and Drinking Poems: Barbara Crooker’s ‘Ode to Olive Oil’“ quotes Barbara Crooker’s wonderful poem in full.

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Poetry Friday LogoThis post is linked to Poetry Friday, hosted today by Katy at her blog The Logonauts.

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31 Comments

Posted by on February 10, 2017 in Objects, Poetry Friday

 

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Doodling Supper (NPM ’16-Day 10)

I love how Robert Brewer describes a “doodle poem” in his April 8th prompt:

“So for a poem, I’m thinking this could start off as something small that stays small or builds to epic proportions.”

On reading this prompt, almost at once I thought of cooking a meal. It may start leisurely enough but inevitably builds to that crucial moment when all the cold and cooked dishes must find their way to the table at the peak of their crisp, or piping hot goodness. And then, of course, it all ends with the call.

A counted-word cinquain seemed a good vehicle to deliver a doodle poem.

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Photo: pixabay.com

Doodling Supper

Mix beef
eggs, oatmeal. Peel potatoes.
While meatloaf bakes, tear lettuce, toss
radishes, cucumbers, tomatoes. Set table. Done? Cut. Mash.
Supper’s on!

© 2016 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

 

 
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Posted by on April 10, 2016 in Cinquain

 

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My thing to eat (NPM ’16-Day 7)

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Photo: pixabay.com

My thing to eat

Not too sweet and not too savory
not a bread and not a cake.
Not a square and not a doughnut
in a pan of cups must bake.

To your basic butter, flour
sugar, eggs and leavening
you can add whatever’s handy
you can add most anything!

Muesli, wheat germ, bran, granola
poppy seed, flax, chocolate.
Almonds, carrots, orange, cranberry
peanut butter, apricot.

Pumpkin, lemon, bumbleberry
ginger, pear, banana, fig.
Apple sauce, cream cheese and cherry
make them small or make them big.

Food of breakfast, lunch or snack time
served with any drink a treat.
Streusel-topped, so rich and yummy
MUFFINS are my thing to eat!

© 2016 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

 

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When one of the prompt sites I consult during April suggested a poem about food, I knew just what I wanted to write about. You see, on our recent jaunt to the Island, one of our group recommended a fabulous muffin, available from a market kiosk in the ferry terminal. This wheaty, nutty, flaxy, carroty, fruity concoction transported me to muffin heaven. And so the poem.

I love baking muffins too. The Spiced Squash Muffins I made for Christmas morning (pictured below) were topped with crunchy sugar-cinnamon goodness and filled with dried cranberries. The recipe is here.

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Poetry Friday LogoThis post is linked to Poetry Friday, hosted today by Laura Purdie Salas at Writing the World for Kids (where she’s writing a whole series of putrid poems for National Poetry Month—pimple popping, head cheese, a mouthful of ocean water anyone?).

 

 
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Posted by on April 7, 2016 in Light, Objects, Poetry Friday

 

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Fine Dining

I love the one-little-word SIMPLIFY, Linda Kulp‘s word that we are exploring this week. (I think I will chose it one of these years.)

I love a clean counter top in my kitchen, my desk cleaned off at the end of the day, Friday afternoons when all my house surfaces gleam after dusting.

I love the idea of an uncomplicated, straightforward life where little is enough (except for books—and I need to have another go at simplifying my closet).  I once had a poster picturing an old-fashioned wooden bucket with the words “Very little is needed to have a happy life.” I had it up so long it faded to monochrome.

I bought a framed print to take its place. In our old house it hung on the wall beside our kitchen table. In the house we live in now it’s on one of our stairway walls—still reminding me to keep it simple.

A couple of Bible verses that ground me in simplicity are:

“And what does the Lord require of You? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” – Micah 6:8.

and

“And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content” – 1 Timothy 6:8.

That is the ideal. Sad to say, I don’t always live it. But I know I am happier when I don’t feel the hot breath of wanting more and having more on my neck.

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My “Simple Life” print – Photo © 2016 by V. Nesdoly

Fine Dining

This is not about fashionably late
with candlelight shimmering in glasses of Pinot Gris
snowy napkins, pewter flatware
and stacks of food on square plates
over smudges of condiment reduction,

but about two Corelle bowls
heaped with spinach salad at five
green beans steaming in brown Corningware
mushroom chicken bubbling in a Pyrex casserole
a stainless steel pot of fragrant rice.
a tub of margarine, pocked as pumice
and three bottles: Balsamic, Raspberry, Ranch
all on wood trivets to protect the old tablecloth.

Now that it’s light
we watch people stroll babies and dogs
on the path below our townhouse window.
It’s not the view we would get
at Pelagos on the Beach

but the sum of it is certainly
dining at its finest.

© 2011 by Violet Nesdoly

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Join us each week at Spiritual Journey Thursday

This post is linked to Spiritual Journey Thursday, hosted each week by Holly Mueller at her blog Reading, Teaching, Learning.

 

 
 

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Sonnet to a Potato

A couple of weeks ago, I found inspiration for a couple of poems in response  to the found photo prompts at Laura Shovan’s blog (where the fun continues).  A photo of a “Loaded baked potato” was the prompt for February 14th.  That photo plus the fact it was Valentine’s Day and love sonnets were in the air of my brain inspired “Sonnet to a Potato,” a parody of the classic “How Do I Love Thee?”  by  Elizabeth Barrett Browning. (You can read the original HERE).

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Collage from photos at pixabay.com

Sonnet to a Potato

(With apologies to Elizabeth Barrett Browning)

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee boiled, peel-mashed, deep fried as chips
in gravy drowned, sweet, baked, spiced hot with dips.
I laud thee for thy subterranean days,
thy secret growth all hidden from sun’s rays.
Fair starchy flesh, thou’rt comfort to my lips.
They calories they fortify my hips.
Sweet staple nightshade fruit, I give thee praise
for skin of white or yellow, russet, red
for Yukon Gold, Kerr’s pink, purple or blue.
Thou give’s thyself in pancakes, latkes bread
skins, salads, hash browns, scalloped, soup and stew.
Though sometimes called tater or spud instead
to thee, Potato, my taste buds stay true!

© 2016 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

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Poetry Friday LogoThis post is linked to Poetry Friday, where you’ll find all kinds of delectable poetic fare. PF is hosted today by Elizabeth Steinglass.

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2016 in Light, Objects, Poetry Friday

 

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Kitchen monster

I love the garburator that is part of the sink apparatus in our townhouse. Love it, but rarely use it now because we’ve been asked not to in favor of collecting our organic scraps for recycling and conserving water. (For those not familiar with this gadget, you run water as you feed organic stuff down the sink into the garburator with its blades that grind scraps tiny and send them on their way to join the rest of the sewage.)

Much as I liked it,  I also found it to be temperamental in that it didn’t like scraps of a certain kind. Potato and carrot peelings were the worst. More than once it plugged up on me in the middle of preparing for guests. Yikes!

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(Image: ariesa66 / Pixabay.com)

 

Kitchen Monster

My handy kitchen monster’s maw
loves peels and water, stems and pits
but if I make it eat too fast
it goes into its little fits.

Sometimes it chokes
on pip or core
plugs up the sink
backwash—“No more!”

Then I must soothe
its circle lips
with Heimlich cup
of icy chips.

It growls mechanic
cough “Ahem!”
then swallows all
its veggie phlegm.

© 2016 by Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

 

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Poetry Friday LogoThis post is linked to Poetry Friday, a collection of poems and poetry-related posts for your Friday reading pleasure. Poetry Friday is hosted today by Keri at Keri Recommends.

 
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Posted by on January 15, 2016 in Light, Objects, Personal, Poetry Friday

 

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Thanksgiving Lunch at the Mennonite Church

Pie

(Photo © 2015 by V. Nesdoly)

Thanksgiving Lunch at the Mennonite Church

We’ve been smelling coffee for a while now
as the sermon drones on and on but finally
it’s benediction time and “Thanks
for the food we are about to partake. Amen.”
Old and young crowd down the stairs
to the warm, fragrant basement
claim chairs at the long table
where we usually have Sunday School.

The food committee hovers in the kitchen
as we start filling plates with potato and jello salad
zwieback and butter, sliced tomatoes, cheese
homemade dills, platters of cold pink ham
roast beef, plump fried chicken.
Soon they come with coffee and tea in steaming kettles
then serve plates of pie—apple, cherry, chocolate
lemon meringue, peach, rhubarb, raisin.

Chairs push back. Farmers swap stories
of combine breakdowns and how many
bushels of oats and wheat to the acre.
Women tell of covering the tomatoes
before last Tuesday’s frost, how Suzy’s not liking school
and did you know Adilman’s has a sale on winter coats?
Kids play tag, hide-and-seek
dash between legs back to the table to snitch
sugar cubes, pickles, pieces of cheese
while the food crew clears the end of the table
nearest the kitchen, gathers up
their twelve basketfuls of leftovers
and lingers over their Thanksgiving lunch.

© 2015 –  Violet Nesdoly (All rights reserved)

 

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Though in Canada we celebrated Thanksgiving in Canada over a month ago, I post this today in honor of the U.S. Thanksgiving celebration. Happy Thanksgiving to all my U.S. friends!

We did a lot of eating in our small town Saskatchewan Mennonite Church but I remember that the Thanksgiving spreads were particularly sumptuous, and loaded with enough pie to last till Christmas!

When I think about my upbringing, I am full of gratitude for the seeds of faith that were planted in it, and the example of service I saw in the adults around me.

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Join us each week at Spiritual Journey Thursday

This post is part of Spiritual Journey Thursday, a series of reflections on my spiritual journey.

Poetry Friday LogoThis post is also linked to Poetry Friday, hosted today by Carol at Carol’s Corner.

 
14 Comments

Posted by on November 26, 2015 in Personal

 

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