Doesn’t this look yummy? Yeah, wish I could take the credit for this picture, but in all honesty, I can’t. As I mentioned before, my poor lap top is in the hospital for brain surgery. Until I have my own system up and running again, I am stealing pictures from the world-wide-web rather than down-load my own pictures. Still cooking, still snapping away, just keeping my pictures for another day. Maybe someday soon, I’ll go back and update with my photos.
Today is the 5th Friday of Lent. Normally, during this time of the year Catholics world-wide refrain from eating meat on Fridays. This year, for some Catholics in the United States, things are different.
You learn something new every day. I was about to tell you that this is the 5th Friday of Lent, but I would have been wrong. Sure, it’s the 5th Friday after Ash Wednesday, but apparently when counting Lenten Fridays, that first one doesn’t count because it is not preceded by a Sunday of Lent. Do you have a headache now? So confusing.
When it came to making this beautiful Friday Night Supper, I had mixed emotions. You know me, I love everything Italian. That is unless it includes Eggplant. Love the color, not wild about the taste.
When Kiddo was just a wee little kiddo, he moved through the world like a little adult. He traveled with us everywhere, and developed a taste for the finer establishments. Unfortunately, by the time he was a teenager, his tastes changed. It was pizza and burgers and greasy-spoon dives. Typical teenage things.
Did you know that today is National String Popcorn Day? Yep, it is. I’ve always wanted to string popcorn and make cranberry garland for my tree. When my children were little, the best Christmas we ever had was filled with paper decorations and a cardboard box painted to look like a fireplace. How else was Santa going to get into our tiny apartment?
While strolling through the ales of my local World Market one day, I spotted several interesting pastas of the dried variety. One in particular that really got me excited was the Squid Ink Spaghetti. Wow! I’ve always wanted to try squid ink pasta. Here was my chance.
You know me, if it’s Friday, it’s gotta be meatless or a seafood or some other pre-Vatican II throw back. Say what you will, eating “meatless” once a week really is a smart, healthy choice.
This past spring, we planted San Marzano tomatoes in our garden. Having never grown this type of tomato before, we planted two little plants. They grew and grew, crowding out the two pepper plants and took over everything. And they produced. Pounds and pounds of tomatoes. San Marzano tomatoes aren’t the kind you enjoy right off the vine. They taste like unseasoned tomato sauce, which is what makes them the perfect tomato for soups and sauces. Before we knew it, the freezer was full of simple tomato sauces. Call then unfinished. Depending upon the final dish, the sauce is seasoned as needed.
On this day, we honor the deliciousness of shrimp sautéed in butter, garlic, lemon juice and white wine. Oh my stars, can the day get any better?
Don’t you just love these shells? I know I do. I like anything that is served in something different – like a shell or a hollowed out coconut bowl or bread or pineapples. We once ate at a restaurant that used pineapples cut lengthwise and hollowed out to serve rice, sweet and sour pork or teriyaki chicken. It was awesome! I want to try a backyard tropical party with pineapples as serving platters and drink cups. I think that would be fun, don’t you?
Didn’t I tell you Italy has some of the best Lenten Dishing going? I love Piccata. I first fell in love with Veal Piccata, then perfected my own take on Chicken Piccata. At Christmas, one of our favorites is Dover Sole Piccata. I’ve even made my Pork Piccata the star of a six course Italian Supper.
Today is the 3rd Sunday of Lent. Depending upon your school of thought, this day could also be the Feast Day of the Archangel Saint Gabriel. Gabriel’s name means “the power of God.” Gabriel is called by name three times in Scripture. His first appearance is found in Old Testament, in the Book of Daniel (And I heard a man’s voice from the Ulai calling, “Gabriel, tell this man the meaning of the vision” Daniel 8:16). He is next found in the Gospel of Luke, when Gabriel brings Zechariah the news that his post-menopausal wife will bring forth a son, John the Baptist. Once more, Gabriel appears as the messenger of miraculous births with his visit to the Virgin Mary. While not mentioned by name, many believe that it was Gabriel who appeared to Joseph, who told the shepherds of the birth of the Christ Child and that he was the angle who comforted Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. As a messenger of God, Saint Gabriel is the patron saint of such organizations as broadcasting, postal workers and those in public relations among others.
It’s only fitting that on this, the eleventh day of the Lenten Season, we enjoy a recipe from New Orleans. After all, you can’t get much more connected to the whole idea of Lent without the Carnival that is Mardi Gras.
Here is it Day Three of the Lenten Season and the First Friday of Lent. Any way you slice it, today is a meatless Friday in our house.