I used chicken breasts from Mountain Meadow Farm, which I bought at the Sergeantsville Farmer's Market; MMF is run by my friend Sheila, who often works alongside me when I'm making my frozen desserts at the Croton Rod & Gun Club, and her husband, Jim. I also bought a baker's dozen ears of corn at the SFM. And I made the soup base from a whole passel of cherry tomatoes I picked at our CSA farm, Sandbrook Meadow Farm. Now that the tomato plants are producing like crazy, SMF is charging two credits for all-you-can-pick. That's a huge bargain.
As usual, I processed the tomatoes using my countertop tomato press. I put the stuff that came down the waste ramp through the press again because, as I've noted on the blog before, enough extra tomato goodness is extracted to make it worth the effort.
I threw in my own marjoram and basil toward the end of the cooking time.
Tony added some cayenne pepper to his bowls of soup, but I enjoyed the sweetness from the corn and tomatoes without any spicy heat as a counterbalance.
Last Friday night, Pat treated Tony and me to dinner at Thai Tida, a restaurant in Lambertville that touts its gluten-free–friendliness. Tony said his meal was some of the best Thai food he's ever had. I enjoyed my mine, too, but I would get a main dish with less chili heat in it next time. Our server warned me that the green curry was the hottest they make—which I think is usually the case at Thai restaurants—and I wavered but ultimately decided to go for it:
I survived, but it was really too hot for me, especially after my spicy appetizer: Som Tom Thai, a delicious green papaya and carrot salad with tomatoes, chili peppers, crushed peanuts, and lime juice that I will almost certainly order the next time we go back:
Pat and I got dessert at Owowcow, an ice cream shop that was recently named the best in New Jersey and one I've been meaning to try this summer. I liked my cone of Mint Chocolate Chip, but it didn't blow me away, and I think my MCC is better. Pat enjoyed her cup of Mint Chocolate Cookie:
There's a chalkboard outside the building that houses Owowcow. I added a message urging people to check out the competition. 😆:
I will get back to Owowcow again to taste other flavors. They have three—three!—different vanillas: Madagascar, Indonesian, and Tahitian. It would be fun to have some of each in a bowl and evaluate the differences among them.
Three posts ago, I wrote that Granny had had a stroke but seemed in pretty good shape right afterward. About a week later, she began slurring her words and was having mobility issues.
The doctors confirmed what I figured must have happened: Gran had had another stroke. And this past weekend, she fell again—like she had in June—and broke her hip. Gran has been told repeatedly to call for assistance when she needs to go to the bathroom, but she just can't remember to do it.
Gran had surgery on her hip on Monday. That seemed like a questionable proposition for a 97-year-old, but Dad's doctor, whom he trusts, said Granny was in so much pain, something had to be done. And he said there was little danger she wouldn't survive the operation.
And she made out OK. Like Dad said, she's a tough cookie.
Today is the nephews' 18th birthday and also Matt's move-in day at Lafayette College. Mike moved into his dorm at Bucknell University a week ago Wednesday.
I talked to Mike the day before he moved to Lewisburg and again today, and I talked to Matt yesterday. Mike is doing well, and Matt was eager to get started.
I put containers of vegan chocolate chip cookies—1.75 liters each 😀—in the mail for them yesterday, so they should have them tomorrow:
Tony and I both got library cards this month. The main branch of the Hunterdon County Library is only a short drive away on Route 12 in Raritan Township. There's a map of the county on the facade of the building:
The first book I read was A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler, whose Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant is one of my favorite novels. I've enjoyed every one of Tyler's books I've read; her characters come alive for the reader, and her dialogue is so true-to-life.
I've also been reading The Way to the Spring: Life and Death in Palestine by Ben Ehrenreich, a journalist who introduces us to dozens of people resisting the Israeli occupation of the West Bank.
Tony checked out four books at the same time I checked out those two, and he's done with them all. He joked about having Pat give him a Super Summer Reader sticker because he gets through books so quickly. That's because he's able to read like Evelyn Wood and absorb the meaning of words even while looking at only parts of them.
Tony and I had loads of fun watching the first two seasons of Angie Tribeca, a nutty comedy on TBS that's a more-than-worthy successor to the Airplane! and Naked Gun movies.
We also enjoyed the fifth season of The Great British Bake Off. The contestants were so self-effacing, which was a nice contrast to the bombast required of those hoping to become a champion on Chopped (a show we also enjoy). I rooted for Richard in the finale because he'd won star baker of the week so many times and he seemed like such a sweetheart.