Monthly Archives: July, 2010


You know how sometimes you see something so unusual you just don’t know what to say?
Yesterday, I stopped by my granddaughter’s to meet her new puppy Yoshi.  She had just arrived from Oregon, and is the cutest little white ball of wooly fur… she should be following Mary to school.   I thought she might have some Panda in her too, but Isabel assured me she was a dog of the Akita/Huskie variety.
While I was getting to know Yoshi I noticed a bag of water hanging over the doorway into the house… “What the Hell is that!” Ashley was quick to explain that it was a Fly Chaser… the latest scientific innovation to a fly less house.  (A side note here:  Ashley hates flies more than most… especially the ones that keep circling around and are impossible to kill.  I can remember replacing a few window panes due to over-zealous fly killing)  It seems she had seen this technique employed with much success in a dive bar in Snohomish.  You know, the kind that always has flies circling around inside, but had forgotten about it… until the trip to retrieve Isabel’s new BFF.  Laurie, her best friend in Portland, had a Fly Chaser over her front door, with no flies inside.
Here’s how it works:
1 ~ Zip Loc Baggie
2 ~ Some Water
3 ~ One Penny
4 ~ Some Push Pins
Instructions: Partially fill baggie with water… insert penny… tack over outside doorway

So, I would say, a very successful road trip to The Beaver State for all… Isabel gets her puppy, and Ashley’s nemesis may have met it’s match.   But sometimes you just have to shake your head and say, “What the Hell…???”


My sister Marja in Sacramento says "What The Hell... hope it works!"

My sister Mariya in Friday Harbor tried it and says "No flies in my house!".

Krista... "ta da..."

STIR-FRY and THE WOK…Chinese Cooking Revisited

You know how one thing leads to another?  Well, yesterday my sister Mariya gave me some  snow peas from her garden.  I thought ‘what in the hell am I going to do with these’, and then remembered that I liked snow peas in a stir-fry.  So I went to the grocery store and picked up some veggies to go with them.  I forgot to get some tofu, and that bummed me out when I started cooking,  remembering  I liked tofu in my stir-fry.  I used to do a lot of stir-fry!

See, when I was in the middle of my mid-life crisis in the late ’70s I figured out that a great way to score with women, was to invite them to my house and cook them dinner.  I wasn’t wrong.  Unfortunately I only really knew Mexican and German cooking and they were not showy or sexy enough to impress.  So, I took cooking classes.  (also a great place to meet women)  I signed up for classes at William Glen in Sacramento.  A gourmet food and cookware/lifestyle store, they held classes in a kitchen/classroom at the back of the store.  Those guys were no dummies, as after class you had to pass all the merchandise to get out of the store… no easy feat to escape the cash register.   The instructors were first-rate… I took Italian from Biba Caggiano and Chinese from Martin Yan.  I decided that Chinese would be showy and Italian sexy.  My first class was Chinese taught by a young woman just arrived from Taiwan.  She lived in Chinatown in S.F. and came to town to teach the class.  She was very shy but a good teacher.  The recipes she gave the class were hand written and I still have them.

I took two classes from her and became quite adept at The Art of the Stir-fry, or so I thought. But, it was a lot of fun and I did like to show off.

I always served warm Sake (I know, not culturally correct) with Chinese and red wine with Italian.  And, always Ambrosia for dessert.  (I didn’t dress as a chef for my dates… I know you are thinking ‘What a Dork’)   A funny thing… years ago after I moved to Friday Harbor, a friend invited me to dinner at her house and did a stir-fry with tofu and stole my heart.   I’m thinking the tables were turned… had she heard my secret?

So yesterday I dug out my wok (which I bought on my way out of William Glen after my first class, proper stir-fry spatula too).  I don’t think I have used it for 10 years and was very unpleasantly surprised to find that it was all rusty.  And I don’t mean a little rusty… I mean a lot rusty.  I was ready for a little cleaning, but I ended up having to sand the rust out.  An hour later I had a clean if unbroken-in wok.  I paired some grilled chicken with a sesame orange glaze and the meal was a success.  Next up… The Mongolian Fire Pot!

So, it guess woking is a little like riding a bicycle… although I don’t remember as much food on the floor.

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Back when I was new to blogging, and writing anything, I posted this… it was my 5th story.  I thought my friends at the Moonshine Grid could use a little food.

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