The sculptor’s apprentice

Posted in Thoughts and Reflections at 10:50 pm by admin

I wanted to make Daniel something special for dinner tonight. He’s had a rough week at work, and I knew he would be tired when he came home. I had planned on steak on the grill, but we’ve been grilling for the past three weeks. Instead, I pulled out two pounds of sirloin beef tips and a pork shoulder steak from the freezer to defrost them. While the meat was thawing, I cut up three more of his father’s garden tomatoes and about a half pound of the yellow Chinese tomatoes he gave us, one quarter of a red onion, and two tablespoons of fresh basil from Mom. I added some Italian seasoning and mixed them with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, then I placed this in the frig.

When the meat was thawed enough to separate, I used a pair of kitchen poultry shears and trimmed the meat then cut it into bite size pieces. I place one tblsp. of bacon fat in a sauce pan and browned the meat in the pan. To this I added one cup of sauerbraten gravy I had stored in the freezer and a tablespoon of brown gravy mix. I let the meat simmer in its juices and the gravy for three hours. I’m calling this goulash. While the meat was simmering, I washed the remaining young green beans from Daniel’s father and cut a carrot into julienne strips the same size as the beans. I placed these in a tub of cold water and stored them in the frig. Then I mixed up a batch of cornbread that I made with half the recipe I use for scratch and half a bag of cornbread mix. I thought this might just give me the consistency I’ve been looking for, not too gritty, and not too sweet. I baked this in the toaster oven on the front porch. At 5:15, I removed half the beans and carrots from the water and placed them on a towel to dry off a bit, and I poured a tblsp. of olive oil in a smaller sauce pan to cook them.

Now you may be wondering what the title of this post is all about. At 5:30 I went out to the pond to start a water change when I found Mr. Frog perched beneath a white cement statuette of a frog that sits atop a flat rock over the spillway between the pond and settling chamber. I know this frog, and he knows me. He did not jump into the water even though I stood less than a foot from him. I returned to the house to get my camera, realizing that a photo opportunity like this would probably never present itself again. When I returned, I proceeded to take multiple photographs of the frog and statuette using the portrait and macro settings. My camera was no more than eight inches from him. As I was taking the photos, Daniel called to say he was on his way home. I’ve posted one of the photos below. I’m calling it “The sculptor’s apprentice”. When Daniel arrived home, he nearly collapsed in his La-z-boy so I held off starting dinner. I cooked the vegetables in the olive oil and a little garlic powder and served this with the goulash, cornbread and tomato salad.

I was right about the cornbread, it was perfect. Oh and the meat was so tender it melted in our mouths. When I went out to check the pond at around 9:00, well after dark, Mr. Frog was still sitting in the same spot I had left him nearly three and a half hours earlier. So starts our weekend.


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