Sometimes I think I am the luckiest woman alive. I have a spouse who loves to cook … and is good at it! He likes to cook, and bake, and smoke meats, and has even dabbled with drying fruits, vegetables, and herbs. Most everything he has attempted has turned out wonderfully. Italian. Mexican. Chinese. American. Cajun. German.
He makes all of our meals, meaning lunch and supper and the occasional “something special.” Waffles. Biscuits and gravy. Norris omelets. Cookies. Cakes. Chex party mix. There are very few foods he doesn’t make. Tuna salad. My mom’s potato salad, coleslaw, and macaroni salad. And pies.
He also loves to cook with fresh food … better yet, home grown … so he raises a huge garden. Huge, because there’s a little bit of everything, I swear! He likes to plant enough so we will have what we need and there will still be some to share with neighbors.
Toward the end of June, as the strawberries, rhubarb, cherries, and asparagus were winding down, I told Mr. Pat that if he harvested it, I would process it. This was not wise on my part. July has been harvest time … and processing has required both of us!
We’ve been freezing sweet corn. Yay! We’ve been eating broccoli nearly every day because we have so much in the freezer from prior years. We’ve been canning dill pickles because those little boogers are prolific AND ours are turning out just like Lucille said they should if we followed the recipe.
We made pickled beets, using my mom’s recipe. Then we used this brine to make pickled eggs, like his mom used to make. We even put 19 homemade runzas in the freezer, using only half of the cabbage he had grown!
The night after making runzas we sat down to a supper of bacon-lettuce-and-tomato sandwiches, sweet corn, and cucumbers and onions sliced into vinegar. And I said, “Now this is MY definition of summer … when you can eat BLTs, corn, and cucumbers, fresh from the garden, all at the same time!”
Thank you, God, for all things good! Grace and peace … --Pastor Pat
Pastor Pat Norris
Something to Ponder is by Pastor Pat and is printed on the back of the bulletin each week.