Merry Christmas. Happy Hanukkah. Many Blessings of whatever holiday brings you joy.
Yesterday's home agenda was marked to decorate outside. But God had better plans. He opened the heavens, the angels throwing .94 inches of loving wet kisses to all which blooms here.
We rarely get frost, let alone snow- but our summer heat often turns fuchsias to mulch. This Fuchsia 'fulgens' blooms right outside my study window. It came packed in a suitcase from my pilgrimage to Annie's Annuals. Over a year: it has proven not be as delicate as it appears. Omnipresent sepals call in hummingbirds for a spot of nectar year 'round.
Fuchsia 'fulgens' isn't in stock at Annie's at the moment- but you can wish list them: Annie's never forgets to contact you.
This year, a smaller rosemary tree was chosen to hold the gingerbread and candy ornaments in the kitchen. Because it leaves more of my meager counter space clear, this leaner tree has proven useful in setting up food courses to help ourselves from at dinnertime as the counter isn't so overwhelmed .
Does cool weather entice you to the kitchen? It does me.
This morning, the oven hissed a little as it warmed the cast iron skillet, until they were both 350 degrees.
Baking potatoes were bathed and dried and poked a bit before the microwave performed a bit of culinary foreplay.
Not quite cooked, the spuds were willingly sliced in to not raw, yet still firm, 1/2" rounds. These were anointed in EVOO then spread on the skillet hot from the oven.
Salt from the sea and a bit of Lawry's Seasoned Pepper were sprinkled with a light touch.
I would love to say the discovery of the seasoned pepper was intentional. Alas, I was in a hurry and not wearing glasses at the grocery store.
What a happy accident this discovery has been. It is just the right grind, with just enough oomph, to make one of those slight, but definite improvements that which leaves tasters wondering "What's your secret?"
I digress. The potatoes go onto the skillet in a single layer, into the oven. The door is closed and you can do whatever you wish until the buzzer goes off- 10 or 15 minutes for a small batch.
When you peek, look for the upside to be photogenically browned. Flip the potatoes, sprinkle with a bit more salt and seasoned pepper and set the buzzer again for 10 to 15 minutes: from how long the first side took, it will be slightly less that half that length of time. When the top is nicely browned, get ready to serve right away.
Eat these hot and it will be love at first bite. The outsides, crisp: the inside fluffy.
From my house to yours- Merry Christmas and Seasoned Greetings.
Sign up for Annie's wish list at http://www.anniesannuals.com/
The seasoned pepper is regularly stocked at our little Albertson's market on Diamond Bar Blvd at Grand Ave.