Category Archives: MidLaw Diet

Important planning for the other side – Herbs – 2020 Herb Sale – NC Unit of the Herb Society of America – Greensboro

On the other side of this current epidemiological mess, you are going to want herbs. Fresh herbs. From your yard.

Plan for April 16, from 7 AM to 3 PM at the Greensboro Farmers Curb Market.

This is the Annual Herb Sale of the North Carolina Unit of the Herb Society of America.

“All your favorite herbs will be there.” Thousands of plants for culinary and landscape uses.

Not just your garden variety herbs, but also heritage plants, gardening tips, specialty vendors, and educational materials. Proceeds from the sale will support community gardens, student scholarships, public schools gardens, and more.

But mostly, it’s herbs. Thousands of them. All your favorites. What a unit!

  • This event may be held either indoors or outdoors as conditions warrant.
  • Check with the Unit to learn its plans for an intriguing upcoming presentation. “Unusual, Interesting, and Uncommon Herbs.” [EVENT CANCELLED. TO BE RESCHEDULED.]
  • The Herb Society’s recently announced Notable Native Herb of 2020 is Claytonia virginia, which appears to have edged out Claytonia caroliniana by a leaf.

The Unit is a unique and prolific source of learning about herbs. Its material about basil, in particular, is quite steamy and perhaps a touch fevered (go read it for yourself), but certain to draw the adventurous to the Sale at the Farmers Market on April 16. [Like everything else, I assume that a fresh assessment about canceling the event will be made closer to the date.]

Fresh herbs in your backyard, on your deck, in your patio, or in a window box, have been proven to be superior to dried ones in applied programs of herbification.

 

Sun-dried tomato pesto — SPOILER: Recipe plagiarized from Guilford College

Recipes are not protected by copyright law.  (At least, as long as they do not incorporate anything more than materials and directions.)

Recipes might be plagiarized, but plagiarism is not illegal, exactly. There is, however, a moral component to it.

So let’s start with this: the excellent recipe set out below was created (as far as I know) by Guilford College to accompany the exceptional sun-dried tomatoes grown and dried on the Guilford College Farm, which supports Guilford’s extraordinary Sustainable Food Systems major and which produces over 10,000 pounds of food a year (and more).

Here’s the deal: Guilford College sun-dried tomato pesto is dynamite, and it’s great on collards. And other stuff. Takes about 10 minutes to make. Here’s what you need to know:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes.

NOTE: Use dry dried tomatoes, not the ones immersed in oil. If you try it with the latter, you’ll want to adjust other ingredients, and flavor may be inflected. Guilford College sun-dried tomatoes are comparable to a leaf of flue-cured tobacco.

  • 1/3 cup unsalted, dry roasted almonds.

NOTE: I would use more almonds than this, at least with my collards. I’m not sure that salted almonds wouldn’t be fine, but not the smoked ones or flavored ones.

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt.

NOTE: Now, you see the point about whether the almonds are salted.

  • 2-3 cloves garlic.

NOTE: This is going to depend on you and garlic, and the particular garlic you have. Food without garlic is ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­like an interstate with no exits­, but too much garlic is a punishment for sins.

  • 1 tablespoon of fresh rosemary leaves, the ones you should have growing in a dry, full-sun spot somewhere in your yard (in a pot for all that). Even you can raise rosemary.
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes. (You know the drill about red pepper: it’s optional; you can probably add more than what’s prescribed. Up to you.)
  • ¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper.
  • ¾ to 1 cup extra virgin olive oil. (More or less, depending on your plans for it. I wouldn’t use too much here.)

Directions

Put it all into a food processor. Process. Just like the Early Friends did.

Put it on whatever you want to.  Collards is/are a good idea. Or, black-eyed peas, for the season.

Moral Absolution

If you have read this far knowing that this recipe has been appropriated from Guilford College, you now have three options. They are:

  1. Refer a likely student to Guilford knowing that Guilford’s remarkable, innovative program – THE GUILFORD EDGE – changes lives.
  2. Make a donation to Guilford, hoping that, if your donation exceeds three figures, someone will send you some sun-dried tomatoes, and knowing that your gift will support Guilford’s remarkable, innovative program – THE GUILFORD EDGE. If the sun-dried tomatoes are not forthcoming, ask for some.
  3. Tell others that Guilford’s remarkable, innovative program – THE GUILFORD EDGE – is carving out a unique and immensely valuable niche for Guilford College in the firmament of 21st Century higher education.

If you do not do one of these, then you may be colluding in some sort of plagiarism. It’s not clear.

Basil is for Idiots

Basil is for idiots, but pesto

basil_genovese-plantOver the millennia, the peoples of the Mediterranean have learned a simple but profound truth: Almost anything goes better with olive oil, garlic and a little salt. Maybe some lemon juice. Over time, they realized that, if you have the oil, the garlic, and the salt, then you can just go out into the back yard, scoop up almost anything that’s green and fresh, and mash that up with the oil and garlic and have something good to eat …  although, if you try this, things will go a lot better if you have some basil or parsley in your yard.

Which of course brings the discussion to pesto and pistou and persillade and green sauce. It’s time to get ready.

With fresh basil, you can have the best pesto. The good news is: any idiot can raise good, fresh, plentiful basil.

All basil wants is a lot of sunshine, plenty to drink and a well-drained place to sit. (Basil and I are a lot alike.) You can have all the fresh basil you want – at trifling cost.

It’s a little amazing how many different recipes are described as the one for “classic” pesto, and it’s daunting to observe the near-religious fervor that infuses notes and articles about it. Just put “pesto recipe” into your search engine and push the button.

Remember what Bobby Bare said: “Just buy you some basil and plant it by June, and you’ll be a rocking and a rolling soon.”

Soup in milk cartons — Spanish; fortune awaits at Greensboro Farmers Market

These Spaniards sell fresh soups, chilled, in the likes of milk cartons in their grocery stores. Sometimes in bottles, like milk bottles. Salmorejo, gazpacho, ajoblanco. Wonderful, highly flavorful, fresh cold soups.

Maybe they do this in grocery stores in the US. I am not a good shopper. Often I don’t see what’s there.

I suppose it’s a close call, but when you can get such soups, so fresh, so easily, and so economically, with little or no chemicals, why would you go to the trouble to make them yourself?

Maybe we could get them at the Farmers Market? They’d need coolers. Like they do for seafood and and chickens.

If not, you’d want to learn to make your own ajoblanco.

Octopuses

Octopuses, they say, have nervous systems that differ radically from ours (us vertebrates). Clusters of nerve endings are located around their bodies and among their many legs. Those nerve junctions can operate independently. They don’t need to send every bit of information back to a central brain. They coordinate directly and independently of brain central.

This makes them quick, resilient and smart in a special way.

We don’t entirely understand them and their angle on consciousness.

In light of this, should we be eating them? With mashed potatoes and alioli?

Fidueà, sepia, creatures from the sea

MidLaw Has returned to the Mediterranean coast of Spain.

These people have a genius for dragging strange creatures from the sea then ingesting them.

The creation of fidueà may have been Spain’s finest hour in the 20th Century. The daring to put the first cuttlefish into the mouth, whatever the century, the most courageous.

They find and boat creatures of the sea, bring them to shore right away, deliver them off their boats little more than 10 yards (maybe meters) to the restaurants, where they cook’em. You eat’em. There. Then.

What a concept.

There’s a fortune awaiting the restaurateur who first brings fideuà to the Carolina coast.

Eggs mount comeback at Mayo Clinic — paralleling classic cultural progression

In the beginning, eggs were good. Two every morning.

Then they got bad. Cholesterol.

But they came back. Dietary cholesterol does not determine what’s in your arteries.

Most recently, they went bad yet again.  A study of early deaths among egg eaters.

Still, they return. Over at the Mayo Clinic. Mayo says it’s not the eggs, it’s you.

Eggs are good for some people, bad for others. Depends on what you bring to the table.

We’ve seen this before. In fact, repeatedly.

Religion. First, God was an external, objective actor. Then He became the possession of the priests. Then, of congregations. And, ultimately, is a matter of the experience of individual believers.

Art. First, art was a re-creation of an animal. Then, a representation of objective reality. Then, a stimulus of the viewer’s senses. Then, a stimulus of the viewer’s subjective experience.

Industry. First, a craft. Then, mass production, automation. Then, artificial intelligence.  Ultimately, individual, 3-D printed products.

Law. First, decrees of the strong. Then, decrees of the ordained. Then, Natural Law. Then, legislation and interpretation. Ultimately smart contracts, implemented by blockchain.

Hummus. First, hand-crafted along the Nile. Then, a national food. Then, a global, plastic-packed, shelf product. Ultimately, any pulverized, creamy dip. Finally, retrieved by the roll-your-own ethic of the MidLaw Diet. You don’t buy it; you make it. Your way

Now it’s eggs. But it’s not the eggs. It’s not the cholesterol. It’s you.

If eggs are back, can bacon be far behind?

Humpty Dumpty back on the wall

MidLaw has been all over eggs. Recommends them with hummus.

As early as 2015, MidLaw lifted up CNN’s report: Eggs Are Legal Again; Breakfast Is Back.

Two months ago, MidLaw linked to the Cleveland Clinic’s egg-affirming encomium: Eggs are good for you. “Eggs are fine. They’re actually a very healthy food.”)

I hope you ate them when they were good for you.

The Journal of the American Medical Association is reporting now that some new study concludes that eggs kill. Harvard’s School of Public Health and others are all “on the one hand, on the other hand.”

Humpty Dumpty is back on the wall. Coffee is an endangered species. Orange juice is a sugar bomb. Bacon: nitrates, nitrites.

Before you can get out the door in the morning.

Hummus for breakfast is not a bad idea. The Way.

 

 

Coffee

I’m not addicted to coffee. I never drank it until the Army. You have to drink it there, or at least you used to.

And coffee is a big thing if you are a lawyer.

Then, they started saying that coffee is bad for you. Blood pressure.

But now they say drinking coffee is good for you. Makes you live longer. I am serious. 

Well, fine. Drink it.

So now they are saying it’s an endangered species. Climate change. I am serious. 

No question about climate change here.

If we’ve got to fix climate change to get coffee pinned down, then get busy.

The uncertainty is killing me.

A timidly lived life, an eggless existence, low fat

Eggs Fried

The Cleveland Clinic says eggs are good for you. It says you’d do well to eat them every day. Salt, it says, is not all that bad. A low-fat diet makes little difference.

All those eggs not eaten. All that cabbage not salted. So much skim milk. The mind reels. The spirit plummets. The metabolism boggles.

Who is to blame? Doctors? The Government? The Sugar Lobby?

Where is the reward for a timidly lived life? An eggless existence?

What price low fat?