Friday, April 17, 2009

Two Things from Today

First: Trout lilies.

Jonah and I were doing yard clean up today. We each pulled a wagon and I picked up all the sticks.

My back hurts.

Under the maple trees I was shocked to find trout lilies growing in the grass.

Now, trout lilies are certainly not uncommon or remarkable around here, but I was surprised to see them growing in our grass. They grow everywhere in the woods-- a fragile little plant that appears briefly and profusely in early spring with the morels and ramps and then disappear under the ground until next spring. Supposedly, they're edible, but I've never tried them. Maybe I'll have to, since I have them growing everywhere in my yard.

But I was delighted to find them and see that they're in bloom. I've never actually seen them blooming.

Aren't they cute little things?


(And those helicopter-looking sprouts in the background? Baby maple trees. We have nine hundred million of them.)

I'll just never understand the whole "manicured lawn thing". The reasoning escapes me completely. Why, why do people waste time and money and resources cultivating "perfect" expanses of plain grass? Monoculture is not nature as God intended it! What's so offensive about dandylions and plantain, anyway? Most "weeds" that grow in the yard are highly nutritious, medicinal, and even play an important part in the health of the land. I mean, come on... is "weed'n'feed" really more healthful than taprooted "weeds" pulling nutrients up from the subsoil? Isn't plain green as far as the eye can see kinda boring compared to little dots of flowers here and there and puffy little seedballs for kids to blow on? It's so fascinating to me how Creation funtions in different settings. I have different climates and cultures in different parts of my own little one-acre yard and garden. The soil and light and moisture levels all intereact differently in different areas to favor growth of different things, like moss and trout lilies in the thin grass under the maples and dandylions and chicory and plantain in the thick grassed sunny areas. I just find it so much more interesting than plain old grass (which I, personally, could do without, unless it's doing something useful, like feeding animals).

Wow. From lovely, ephemeral trout lilies to a rant about unsustainable modern agriculture in one fell swoop.


On to Thing Two: spicy fries.

I made these for supper to go with our buffalo steaks. (Not even kidding. Someone gave them to us. They were tough. I marinated and grilled them medium rare, but they were... chewy. Yummy, though, I must say.)

I kinda took my Mom's recipe: chili powder, brown mustard, paprika, plenty salt (left out the cayenne for Jonah's sake). Except I made it my own because she uses olive oil. And I don't.

I'm here to tell you, people-- olive oil is for the weak.

Ya gotta cook these babies in LARD. Bake 'em HOT (450 degrees) and LONG until they're crispy.



  1. Hey. Who you callin' weak?

    Where do you get your lard anyway? I've been thinking of using it more but then I would have to use up my stash of premium stuff I mail order from Pennsylvania.

  2. I'll just never understand the whole "manicured lawn thing". The reasoning escapes me completely. Why, why do people waste time and money and resources cultivating "perfect" expanses of plain grass?Somehow, it ties into people ridiculous desire for superficial appearances. Most people think that all that matters is what appears on the outside, and what others can see- so when your own body and house and car and job and other cookie cutter BS runs out, what's left? Make yourself the perfect garden. Make sure the grass is green, and perfectly manicured- just like your hair and face...

    okay, shutting up now. You get it. We needs to be beautiful.

  3. Also, I want steak fries and buffalo.

  4. Mom-- I got over two gallons of lard from the hog that we had butchered in January. They have a lard press and rendered it for me. It's a little strong-tasting, but it's great for cooking. I have also gotten big bags of pork fat at the meat packing house for about 50 cents/lb. I'm sure you could get some from MVMeats for cheap and it's pretty easy to render yourself.

  5. Yea, but how good is the stuff? I mean, you don't know what the hog ate or was given and that is what is stored in the fat, right?

    I really like the LEAF lard I get from Pennsylvania. That is premium and does not have a strong taste.