Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Minestrone Soup

Don't be discouraged by the amount of time this soup needs to simmer. It doesn't take long to prepare; you just need to start a little earlier and find something else to do while it's simmering. Oh, and it's very yummy.

  • 250g dried (or 1-2 400g tins) haricot/navy/borlotti/white beans
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 celery stick, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed or chopped
  • 4 tomatoes peeled & chopped (or 1 400g tin)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped parsley and some sprigs to garnish
  • ¼ cup red wine
  • 8-9 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 turnip, chopped
  • 2 potatoes, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • ½ cup (60 g) chopped green beans
  • 1 cup (80 g) macaroni elbows
  • salt and pepper
  • shaved Parmesan cheese, for serving

If using dried beans, prepare according to the directions on the packet . If using tinned beans, rinse and drain. Leave beans aside.

Heat oil in a saucepan, add onion, celery and carrot. Cover and cook over a very low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, adding the garlic in the last few minutes.

Add the tomatoes, parsley, wine and stock, then cover and simmer for 1-2 hours. Add the turnip, potatoes, beans and tomato paste; simmer, covered, for 15-20 minutes.

Add the zucchini, green beans and macaroni. Simmer, covered, for 10-15 minutes, or until vegetables and pasta are tender.

Season with salt and pepper. Serve topped with shavings of Parmesan cheese and parsley to garnish.


Monday, March 20, 2006

Don't shoot the puppy!

Don't shoot the puppy; that's just awful.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Happy birthday Frank!

Anne and Frank

May your face never need masking, and your bowl always be filled with corn.

To the rest of you - yep, this is at least ten years old. We're all grown up and responsible now. Honest...

Saturday, March 04, 2006

The price of nice

Over the past few weeks, I have grown ten strange appendages. After biting my nails for my whole life, for some reason I just stopped. And people have always told me to stop, so I figured it might be worth a try.

My hands look, well, nice, but I'm just not sure it's worth it. I am accidentally scratching myself and others. I am accidentally scratching squeaky surfaces, making my blood run cold. I am constantly getting dirt under my fingernails and am obsessed with cleaning them. And now I'm worried about breaking them. If I paint them, I'm going to be afraid of chipping the polish. And typing, something I do for hours a day, feels weird. Why do women do this?

I'm starting to understand that long fingernails are a minor feminist issue. Fingernails are restrictive, much like heels or skirts or makeup. When constrained by these items, women can't be as active as men for fear of hurting themselves or making a mess.

Of course women aren't less feminist if they have long nails (or wear heels or skirts or makeup for that matter - something I did for years in a corporate workplace). But a society that expects women to have long nails is perhaps not completely supportive of the idea that women should have as much freedom as men.

So to all you who told me to grow my fingernails, poo. But I might keep trying it a bit longer anyway.