Monday, November 22, 2010

Call me Cinderella


I've gotta stop all this pumpkin stuff.  It seems like that one plant in three years that actually came out of the ground has turned me into a mad woman.  

First, it made me mad when it spread itself all over the manure pile and covered up half of my helpless little cucumber plants.  It even invaded the tomato patch and wrapped itself around the beanless bean plants.  Or, maybe that was the other way around.

Those beans were pretty weird too.  They just kept growing and extending their tentacles every direction without a thought of ever producing a single bean. Could be they attacked the pumpkin vines first.  Lord knows they didn't help our freezer out.

I got over my mad with the giant spreading pumpkin plant when yellow blossoms popped up all over, followed by baby pumpkins eventually maturing into adolescents.  

No, these fruits would never win a contest for their size, and they never really did turn completely yellow.

But, there were 13 of them, and they've served me well---much better than my beans.  Where IS Jack when you need him?

Since harvesting my baker's dozen from pumpkin hill out west of the barn, I've had yard decorations lasting through Halloween and beyond. 

They filled the front of the antique manure spreader.  Some sat in the rock pile around the poplar trees, and still others made a nice scene in front of the green milk can near the corner of the house.

Completing their stint as decorative yard art, they moved to the storage shed, where one by one, I've been cutting them in segments, cleaning out the seeds, steaming them in the oven and freezing the sauce.

The head cook at The Bridge for Assisted Living asked for two of my pumpkins, and as he was seeing them slowly disappear, Bill spoke for two for Nov. 21 at the Presbyterian Church.  

No problem, I told him, knowing it was gonna take me a while to steam 13 pumpkins, so if someone short-changed me a bit, that was okay.

Bill's two pumpkins went to the church yesterday, and when I asked him the weekly Sunday question of "What's new down at the church?" he responded, "They liked the pumpkins." 

They served as decoration for a display centered around the congregation's  Food Bank drive.  I'm betting they may have eventually ended up at the Food Bank cuz I told Bill I did not need them back.

At least four pumpkins are still sitting out in the new old motor home inside the storage shed. 

They need to be there cuz of the predicted deep freeze over the next few days.  Minus 8 on Tuesday night, they say.  Could be frost on those pumpkins even inside the new old motor home.

If that happens, I may be saved from turning into a pumpkin myself as I labor every day in my kitchen (no ugly step-sisters cracking the whip) whipping up every pumpkin recipe I can think of.  

Yesterday I baked more loaves of pumpkin bread, and, guess what!   This morning, one of the loaves went down there to those Presbyterians for their meeting tonight.  Others will get eaten by the time Thanksgiving ends, I'm sure.  

I also baked a pumpkin pie from a recipe made up in my head.  I think it needed a little corn starch or something cuz it tasted good but ran around the plate like a volcanic lava mass.

When I brought home those pumpkin moon pies from the Mennonite crafts sale, I figured that would be a nice recipe to try.  They ARE good and rich.  So, if I can find the recipe in the Mennonite cookbook, that might be the next item on the baking agenda.

When I was at Wal Mart yesterday (always checking to see that nobody snaps my photo with their cell phone), my cell phone rang.  

The caller was my brother Jim, making sure what food items we wanted him to bring for Thanksgiving dinner.  He was planning to bring some custom-made pies where you tell 'em what you want and they do it for you.  

I told him to consider berry pies and said I'd let him know if we don't have a pumpkin pie.  That's when I got on to the discussion of all the pumpkin stuff I've made in my kitchen over the last few weeks.

"Have you made pumpkin soup?" he asked.

That's when I went into a detailed discussion of just how good the pumpkin soup was and how easy it is to make and how you can make several varieties of pumpkin soup.  Jim had no comments.  Didn't even gasp or grunt.

That's when I realized we had lost our connection and that only the items lining the shelves in that aisle had learned all about my success with pumpkin soup.  I checked so see that no cell phone photographer was lurking in my aisle.

A minute or so later, we got reconnected, and I repeated the story, promising Jim I'd make him some pumpkin soup to try sometime while he's home. 

Regardless of my complete immersion into all things pumpkin, I'm still enjoying every last bite of what is surely leading to a giant, life-altering pumpkin overdose. 

Maybe it's a subconscious desire fed by the fact that if I ingest enough of the stuff, I'll gradually become a semi-ripe, moderate-sized pumpkin.  And on that day when the stroke of midnight comes,  I'll turn into a beautiful princess.  

Dream on!  

Happy Monday.  Now, back to my pumpkins!

1 comment:

Kelly C said...

Linus would be so proud!