Tuesday, August 17, 2010


It’s hump day for my August Pledge.  15 days and blog entries completed, and after today, 15 left to go. I am not going to think too much about that because, in my experience, as soon as I start thinking about being over the midpoint, I start focusing on the end and forget to enjoy the remainder of the experience.  

Still, hump day is hump day and it is an opportunity to assess what has happened in the first half of the project and start thinking about the second half.  Accordingly, I looked over the first batch of posts and realized that there were a couple things that can use a little follow-up. 

On the ingratitude front, Pippi the wonder-dog still smells bad although the intensity is finally diminishing ( see Our piece of the world).  I can stand to be in the same room and even pet her again.  Pippi seems happy about that.  She is a very social dog and seemed confused by our temporary rejection.  We never did find out what she got into.  We never found a good remedy either- we tried tomato juice, baking soda, baking soda and peroxide, doggie shampoo, doggie face wipes, doggie deodorant.  In the end, I think it is just the passage of time that is solving the problem.  Time has a way of solving lots of problems, doesn’t it?  The Pipster is pushing 14 years old now and is starting to show her age.  I think she is nearly deaf.  When we get home from work, instead of being met at the door by the wildly excited, tail wagging, loud barking doggie of our past, we now are met by silence.   We call her name. Silence.  We go upstairs, still calling her name.  Silence.  We go into the bedroom and finally she notices that we are home and gets up slowly, tail wagging, and comes over to greet us.

Yesterday, I finally got around to making that fattouche salad that I mentioned a couple of weeks ago (see Coming up blank) and it was delicious.  I had to search for a recipe for the dressing, but here it is:

Juice of one lemon (~4 tbsp)
4 tbsp olive oil
1 large clove of garlic, crushed
½ tbsp of salt, preferably coarse
1 tbsp of powdered sumac.
Using a mortar and pestle or the back of a heavy spoon, mash the garlic and salt together to make a paste.  Mix with lemon juice, sumac, and oil.
1 ½ cups of romaine lettuce, cut across the head into ribbons
2-3 good sized tomatoes, partially seeded and diced
1 green pepper, diced
1 cucumber, diced
3 green onions, sliced into small pieces
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
¼ cup fresh mint, chopped
3-6 radishes, sliced very thin
1 large thin pita bread, baked or fried and broken into pieces or about 1 cup of  pita chips (see below)

Make the pita crisps by one of the following methods:
  • Method 1:  Put pita bread on baking sheet and heat at 325 for about 20 minutes.  When crisp, crumble into roughly ½ inch pieces.
  • Method 2:  cut pita bread into wedges and deep fry until crisp.  Drain on paper towels and break into small pieces when cool.
  • Method 3:  Buy a bag of pita chips and use those!
  • I use method 1 to save a few calories and a lot of mess,  but when mixed into the salad, the baked chips  get soggy faster than the fried ones.
Combine all salad ingredients (except pita bread).  Chill.

Just before serving, add the pita bread pieces to the lettuce mixture and toss with dressing.   Finish with a little fresh ground pepper.  Enjoy!  This is a Huntley favorite.

So, what is in store for the rest of this month? Hmmm....

Probably some reflections on teaching because as we get closer to the start of the academic year, I will be even more focused on such things.

Probably some more reflections about cooking, photography and gardening.  

Perhaps some family stories.  I have been meaning to write down some of the stories that have made their way into the Huntley family canon.

And whatever else I am thinking about. 

Today I am grateful for the loyal companionship of my somewhat smelly, mostly deaf dog, Pippi.  

1 comment:

  1. Mmm ... I love Fattouche Salad! I have a rather large supply of sumac if you need any. Do you ever buy the little crunchy cucumbers at that little store (I want to say Jaba's Hut but am not sure that's the right name) on Bay? It's close to the Discount Health Store/Panini's ... Middle Eastern market.