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Good morning GUSfoxfiredevotees!!!!   Ok, we can look at all the money saved or could be saved by not smoking.  We could use that money to stockpile our survival environments and especially food stuffs.  Alright -- bring your animals and their food and toys and scratchy thingies and blankets and . . . . ok, you are not real survivalists but ok, you can still save a shiteton of money by not smoking.  Today I've saved about $6,500 since I quit on 2/8/12.  I wish I had that cash in a jar.  

So, first, apologies for missing Sunday's diary.  I was in the lower Berkshires for the weekend with two really, really smart people.  We talked literature, politics, gossip and walked to see the beaver pond and then a brilliant bog protected by the town and the Nature Conservancy.  

Our host, 82 yo, made dishes which featured his still vibrant garden:  a swiss chard pie and a sorrel soup both of which I copied the recipes.  Incredible.  

So, here I am -- with Roger the Cat by my side -- typing an early for Tuesday but late for Sunday GUS diary.

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Brilliant weekend garden recipes (close enough with what was or is at hand!!!)

Stunning Mark Bittman Kale or Chard Pie (we had Swiss Chard)

2 tablespoons butter, plus more as needed
About 8 large kale or chard leaves, thinly sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup chopped mixed herbs, like parsley, thyme, chervil, and chives
6 eggs
1 cup whole milk yogurt or sour cream
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
½ teaspoon baking powder
1¼ cups all-purpose flour

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Put the butter in a large skillet, preferably nonstick, over medium heat. A minute later, add the kale and onion. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the leaves are quite tender, about 10 minutes; do not brown. Remove from the heat, add the herbs, then taste and adjust the seasoning.

2. Meanwhile, hard-cook 3 of the eggs , then shell and coarsely chop. Add to the cooked kale mixture and let cool while you make the batter.

3. Combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, and remaining eggs. Add the baking powder and flour and mix until smooth. Lightly butter a 9 × 12-inch ceramic or glass baking dish. Spread half the batter over the bottom, then top with the kale filling; smear the remaining batter over the kale, using your fingers or a rubber spatula to make sure there are no gaps in what will form the pie’s top crust.

4. Bake for 45 minutes; it will be shiny and golden brown. Let the pie cool for at least 15 minutes before slicing it into as many squares or rectangles as you like. Eat warm or at room temperature.

Cabbage Pie.

An Eastern European classic: Replace the kale with 1 medium head of Savoy or white cabbage and the mixed herbs with 2/3 cup snipped fresh dill.

Mushroom and Kasha Pie.

Meaty in flavor and texture and can be made with almost any cooked grain, including wheat and rye berries: Substitute 3 cups chopped or sliced mushrooms for the kale and add 1 cup cooked kasha . Add the kasha to the mushroom mixture along with the herbs.

Sorrel Soup

2 T. butter or very good xtra virgin olive oil
diced onion
4 c. coarsely chopped sorrel
2 c. chicken stock or vegetable stock
2 c. cream or milk or 1 cup and 1 cup sour cream or yogurt
1/2 c. or more coarsely chopped chives optional

Heat the butter/oil in a soup pot, then add onion saute until translucent and then the sorrel and chives and cook until the sorrel wilts. Add the stock and bring almost to a boil. Cook for a minute or two. Use an immersion blender to puree the greens or cool a bit and put in blender/food processor.  Add milk or cream and or sour cream/yogurt and heat until hot but not boiling. Season with salt and pepper.

You really have to use your sense of flavor on this one but I swear -- sorrel is the most amazing green for soup I've ever had.

Everyone should have at least one Mark Bittman cookbook.  If you don't cook -- you will want to.

The always generous and brilliant anodnhajo's 10/15/13 update!!!

And Yayyyy!!! Ole Texan returns to the buddy list thanks to anodnhajo!!!

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