Thursday, July 1, 2021

Starting July


Roses from the Garden

July 1st!  We are done with the first half of the year and are already in the second half!  Can you believe it?

Since it was the first of the month and I was feeling well, I made the traditional milkrice for brunch (I wasn't well enough to make milkrice on the first of June and my daughter was too busy with work to make some).  My daughter requested seeni sambol (sweet and spicy sauted onions) to go with the milkrice, so I made that, too, and warmed up the leftover chicken curry, as well.  I rejoiced in being able to stand at the stove and cook!

Whenever I make milkrice, I always make an offering of it at the home altar, as well.  Since I was also giving thanks for the good MRI results, I picked flowers from the garden (red roses from the front garden) to place at the altar (and near my mother's photograph on the living room mantel), and lit a joss stick (incense).  I normally turn on the altar light (it is in the shape of a candle) in the evenings and leave it on all night, turning it off in the morning.  But, my daughter had kept the altar light on  right throughout the past several weeks, both day and night, since I was first taken to the ER with my sciatica pains!  I had decided to leave it on until I received my MRI results, so, today, once I took the food offerings down (after 12 noon), I turned the altar light off, too.  (It was turned on, again, in the evening).

After brunch, I washed the dishes, wiped the top of the stove and the counters, and cleaned one shelf in the fridge where something had spilled and dried up, removing everything from that shelf, washing the shelf, and putting everything back.  I figured that was enough kitchen work for one day!

Later in the afternoon, however, I decided to try another zucchini experiment:

Sauted Zucchini

I sliced up a medium sized zucchini (but, some slices were a little thicker than others) and sauted it in a little butter until the zucchini was soft;  then, added a sprinkling of cinnamon and nutmeg, a squeeze of lemon juice, and a surprise ingredient (to be revealed, below):

Sauted Zucchini

And topped the sauted zucchini with ...
Yogurt? Cream Cheese? ICE CREAM!

The surprise ingredient was sugar!  

I often cook apples this way when I want a quick dessert and I had read a recipe for a pie using zucchini instead of apples, so I thought I'll try zucchini cooked the way I cook apples.  My daughter was willing to give it a try and her verdict was, the thinly sliced zucchini pieces tasted more like apple pie filling while the thicker slices still tasted like zucchini in the middle.  I guess I should have sliced them more evenly and thinly and/or cooked them longer.  I, on the other hand, didn't get any zucchini taste!  It didn't taste like apples, either, but, it was not bad.  A little more cinnamon might have improved the flavor.  There was another portion of the sauted zucchini left over and my daughter said I was welcome to it!  LOL.   Maybe I'll top it off with the leftover pie dough from the peach pie and make a small individual pot pie!  This might not have been one of the more successful zucchini experiments to date, but, it is not a complete flop, either!  It has potential, but, needs a little additional experimentation to get it just right.  Watch this space!

Later in the evening, I suggested getting dinner from one of our favorite ethnic restaurants, to celebrate the good MRI results.  They serve a mix of Vietnamese, Thai, Chinese, and American (e.g. hamburgers, sandwiches) food.  We love their food (although, to be quite honest, we haven't tried their hamburgers or sandwiches!)  LOL.  We called our order in (beef fried rice, Thai beef salad, chicken laab, Thai iced coffee for daughter) and then, went to pick it up.  And, for the first time since May 7, I drove the car!  It was not a long distance - maybe three miles each way - but I drove there and back without feeling any pain so that's a big step towards being able to do things for myself once daughter leaves, later this month.  We invited friend R to join us for dinner, offering to come and pick her up, but, she declined; we then offered to bring her a portion, but, she declined that, too.  Dinner was wonderful, especially since it was the first time since the pandemic started that we had eaten from there.  They give very generous portions at very reasonable prices (everything came to $35.02 with tax) and we have enough leftovers for at least another couple of meals, if not more.

Today, I am grateful for:

- A good start to the month
- Being able to cook while standing at the stove
- Being able to drive again
- Flowers from the garden
- What I was able to accomplish

Today's joyful activity was celebrating the good MRI results by making the offerings of milkrice, flowers, light, and incense in the morning and getting dinner from a favorite restaurant.  

Plans for tomorrow include M's visit to tend to the garden and maybe cleaning another shelf in the fridge?  


  1. I think I'll pass on this zucchini recipe!

    Did you enjoy your celebration meal? It sounds like you did a lot during the day so I hope there are no set backs as a result. It's good you were able to drive as that a key part of enabling your independence when your daughter returns home and one less thing to worry about.

    1. LOL, no zucchini "apples" for you, then! :D

      Yes, I did enjoy the celebration meal. I even had a second helping, which I rarely do!

      I did accomplish quite a bit, didn't I? I felt a little tightness in the leg at one point in the evening while I was resting in bed, but, I walked around the house and that tightness went away. I am very glad I was able to drive because that is an important part of living independently, especially over here! There are other options (public transit, ride services, etc.) but, they are not as convenient as being able to drive yourself!

  2. My mind is having a hard time imagining zucchini with ice cream. Out of all of your zucchini cooking, that will not be the first one I try. Kudos for creativity, though.

    1. Well, you know, according to Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House books, Ma Ingalls did make an "apple" pie with green pumpkin! I think the zucchini filling needs a bit of tweaking, but, it has potential. Next up: zucchini dump cake! :D

  3. You sure are getting wild and crazy with your zucchini experiments! I don't think I'd attempt this one. Glad you were able to drive today and your dinner sounds so delicious!

    1. LOL, this might not be the most successful zucchini experiment, but, it has potential! I haven't quite given up on the idea of zucchini "apple" pie, yet! :D

      Thank you, Martha, being able to drive myself is important to me! I can't always expect other people to take me places I need to go and the bus service is not the best and rides can be costly.

  4. I made the zucchini "sautéed apples" and they were surprisingly tasty!
    I am so glad you are able to return (somewhat) to your normal life.

    1. Oh, yay! Someone else tried them and found them to be palatable if nothing else! It is truly a blessing to be able to resume a modified normal life! Just to be able to stand for more than a minute and take a few steps without experiencing a piercing pain is a blessing!

  5. Your carryout food sounds delicious. I think I remember you having a meal there a few years ago with a friend??? The restaurant's offerings sounded familiar to me.

    I am chuckling about your sweet zucchini effort.

    1. You have a good memory, Debra; yes, I picked up lunch from that same place with a friend, some time ago! It's not a big restaurant - it started out as a tiny, hole in the wall, husband and wife place and it is still in the same place, still a family run business, and the only "improvement" they've made in the 30 years I've gone there has been to make a more permanent outdoor eating area in front!

      The zucchini "apples" weren't the most successful dessert I've made, but, it wasn't bad! :D


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