Saturday, August 15, 2009

Sunday Dinner, August 16, 2009 & Selected Ramblings

Wonder of wonders, I have my Sunday Dinner menu all settled and Saturday's supper as well, and it's only 3 pm.

Saturday's supper will be TEXAS HASH and there's still plenty of CORN SALAD left from the triple batch I made on Wednesday.

For Sunday Dinner, I'm cooking a whole chicken in the crockpot, fresh garden purple hull peas, basmati rice and some okra and tomatoes. I have a canteloupe that we can have for dessert if anybody still has room for something sweet.

As soon as I get this posted I'll dive right into cooking supper and preparations for Sunday Dinner. I like to get as much as I can done the night before so I don't have to spend any more time than I have to in the kitchen on Sunday afternoons.

What are your plans for Sunday Dinner this week? Just share your menu in the comments if you'd like.Where has this Summer gone? Public schools start back here on Wednesday, August 19th, although some private schools and most colleges won't resume until after Labor Day.

I believe I've made it quite clear that I'm not a fan of hot weather, so I don't mourn the passing of the heat and humidity, but the time itself has positively whizzed by in the blink of an eye, or so it seems.

Oh, I'm well aware that there's still plenty of hot weather ahead before Fall really arrives, but it seems once school starts that Summer is officially over for the most part. I can hardly wait for those crisp Fall days and nights, with impossibly blue skies by day and clear, starry skies by night.

And no more mosquitoes till next Summer!Last Fall I bought a food dehydrator from an online company. They'd occasionally sent me brochures through the mail over the last several years and I had a bad case of coveting for one, but they were just too expensive for my budget.

Finally they had a big sale and combined with a coupon I'd saved from them, I managed to procure my dream dehydrator. I have a Wal*mart cheapie dehydrator that I've used for several years, but the trays have gotten brittle and are breaking, and it takes fourteen forevers to dry anything with it.

Comparing the Wal*mart dehydrator to my dream dehydrator is like comparing a Hot*Wheels toy car to a real Ferrari! My new dehydrator has 8 drying trays, a big multi-power fan for fast, even drying and a timer so I don't have to babysit it and watch the clock so I can unplug it when it's done drying.

I had grand plans for drying garden veggies and making beef jerky, fruit leathers and other treats. I did make bags of deer jerky, and still have more deer meat in the freezer so I'll be making a lot more deer jerky in the near future. My nephew, Danny, provides most of the deer meet for the jerky, and deer season isn't that far off.

But one thing I really wanted to try was drying tomatoes. Well, forget that. This year has been the worst for growing tomatoes that I can ever remember. We had a cold, wet Spring that had many gardeners having to replant their gardens multiple times, and many gardeners just gave up and didn't even have a garden this year.

The gardeners who actually got their tomato plants to live and grow into the Summer didn't fare much better. We had a hotter and dryer June than average, followed by a record setting wet and cool July.

All this, combined with drifting chemicals from rice fields around here that damage or kill the tomato plants, have resulted in little or no tomatoes for area gardeners. And the few tomatoes that have managed to actually set fruit are not the best quality. Some gardeners that are fortunate enough to live away from rice fields have had better luck than most.

Usually by now my family and friends that garden have more tomatoes than they can use or give away, which means that I have all the tomatoes that I want, but not this year. I sure wanted to try dehydrating some tomatoes to put away for Winter. I usually can my excess tomatoes and occasionally even put some in the freezer for soups and such, but not this year. I didn't even really get as many as I'd like to eat fresh.

Maybe next year will be a better year for tomatoes.Life continues around here. I spend most Mondays and Tuesdays with my sisters CECIL and Sue, and sometimes JESSICA and Emmy join us. We sometimes eat out together then go to the mall, or sometimes we eat take out burgers here, and sometimes I cook for us.

Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays Emmy is here with me from early afternoon until her Daddy gets off work and picks her up around 6:30 pm every evening. While it's so hot and humid we spend most of our time inside, but once it cools off we'll spend more time outside.

Lamar takes Emmy for walks in her stroller, but they wait until late evening when it's a little cooler, and they make frequent stops at home for cool drinks and so Emmy can go potty. For all intents and purposes, Emmy is potty trained except for naptime and at night, and for long car trips.


Saturdays are a lazy day for me. I take my time deciding what to cook for Sunday Dinner, making Saturday Supper and writing my Sunday Dinner blog post, then making Saturday Supper and Sunday Dinner happen.

Sunday is church day. Sunday School, preaching and then Sunday Dinner either here or eaten out somewhere with various family members and sometimes friends also join us.

Sunday afternoon is usually spent in my living room, making fun of those who doze off and snore or snort themselves awake.

Sunday night, church again.

There are occasional variations in my routine, but most weeks fit into the pattern.

And now I need to get this posted and go make Texas Hash for supper!

Y'all have a great weekend. May God meet all your needs and may you have enough to share.


The Old Gray Mare said...

I am overrun with tomatoes. I don't can & we have more than we can possibly eat. I wish I could send you some!

Linda said...

It sounds like your menu is well under control Diane. It will be delicious - as always.
I will be so glad when summer is over too, but I'm afraid we have a good two months left here in Texas. I'm praying that the change of season will bring us rain - lots of rain.
Your week sounds nice to me. I love a comfortable routine - although a little change once in a while is fun. I'm not a fan of Big Change though. It's so nice when life runs smoothly.
Have a wonderful week Diane.

Amy said...

The few tomatoes I planted perished pretty quickly with the insane heat we've had this summer... Sad.. I was really hoping to enjoy some good tomatoes, too... but I've had to settle for the pretty mediocre offerings from the grocery store...

Jess said...

I wish we had more tomatoes too! Usually I get a bunch too, but not this year...

Love you and see you today or tomorrow.


Brenda said...

Sorry about your bad tomato season. You know how much I love them, and not to rub it in, but Reva's husband's toms are doing really well. He tried a couple of those hanging tomatoe thingys, along with regular plants. I've eaten several fresh from the garden even while I'm watering.
OK, I see that really was a rub-in...sorry ;) I'd send you some but I think you'd just have tomato mush by the time you got it.

Today is Reva's birthday so our Sunday dinner is a barbeque then homemade sour cream cake. Yum!

Have a wonderful week, Diane

Lisa Sherrill Roach said...

We are having a beef roast, mashed potatoes & gravy, broccoli & rice casserole, salad, and rolls. No dessert unless someone gets a cookie from the cookie jar. Hope you have a wonderful week!

Lisa Sherrill Roach said...

We are having a beef roast, mashed potatoes & gravy, broccoli & rice casserole, salad, and rolls. No dessert unless someone gets a cookie from the cookie jar. Hope you have a wonderful week!

Dawn said...

We've had one from our garden so far - hope more soon!

Today we went to Applebee's with the 4 girls after church. They had coupons for free meals that came from completing the library summer reading program. They did great.

I hope it cools off for you soon - we're having an incredibly cool day - I love it!

amelia said...

Our tomatoes are just starting to ripen and I can't wait to try the first one. I don't eat any flesh but I cook it for my husbands family who are coming for dinner today and it's bacon wrapped pork loin, long grain and wild rice with green beans, red, green, yellow and orange peppers, mushrooms and green onions all diced and added to the rice and steamed broccoli and cauliflower!!!
For dessert, homemade rhubarb fool, with our own rhubarb!

Brenda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brenda said...

Hi Diane,
Just wanted to let you know that I posted my 10 Things post.

Dick said...

We have a lot of tomatoes but also have had some that seem to develop a rot or something on one end. Kind of frustrating.

Public school here starts Sep 2. I always thought the normal day was the Wed after Labor Day but Labor Day is as late as it possibly can be this year & there is only one area district holding until after that. You are right, it doesn't seem possible that it is that close to the end of summer.

As to dinner today, I am in favor of going out but we are over budget for eating out so Pat may not want to do that. Of course when eating out goes over budget our food budget is usually under budget so it at least partially balances out. But we can eat at home for a lot less that $30.

Rachel said...

I went out to eat at Sully's after church. I had a sirloin with onions and mushrooms, mashed potatoes, a salad, and iced tea. It was all good! I reckon I'll be going back to that place!! They have those yummy batter fried mushrooms that I love so and no one else (that I know of) in our town has them! Sully's is a new restaurant here.

Tomatoes have been plentiful here with our weather this summer. They are expensive at the Farmer's Market, but they are nice ones! I have a cherry tomato plant that came up on its own in among the flowers, and it is producing really well. I stand out there in the evenings and just pick and eat'em!

MISS G said...


RennyBA's Terella said...

It reminds me of that we had a crockpot once - Have to buy a new one as it makes sooooo good food :-)

Btw: Sorry I haven't been around that much lately - have been touring France.

Michael Manning said...

Diane: You could host your own cooking show! I would be a huge fan with all of these delicious recipies! :)

Linds said...

Yoohoo!! Hello! Yodelayheehoo!Hello from the Alps!
Blisteringly hot again today, and we have just been down the mountain to Luzern to look at the shops. In an air-conditioned mall, thank heavens. Routines.....what are they? My routine is shot at the moment, but reality and home loom on the horizon, and I will MAKE myself get back into computer rhythm again asap. I have spent a great deal of time sitting in my brother-in-law's restaurant trying to speak German in recent weeks. I keep trying! And as for food, it is too hot to eat. That has to be good for the waistline which is totally out of control. Sigh.

kkryno said...

Wow, you sure are a busy bee! I'll bet you have a lot of fun with your loved ones. I plan on seeing mine in October. :) Can't wait!

It's so great that Emmy is through with her potty training. What a good girl!

Have a nice week!

Mary said...


The Texas hash sounds delicious. I really have to try it.

Isn't it odd that your crop of tomatoes were dismal this year while here we have hoards of them...maybe due to the wet spring and summer. I phoned Michelle today and told her the next time she was out to stop by and pick some up. We can't possibly eat them all and we gave the man who sometimes does odd jobs for us some already.

Enjoy your dream hydrator. I'm sure the deer jerky is delicious.

No severe weather here today, but lots of wind and the air still feels like a storm is brewing. I certainly hope not. We don't need anymore like last night.

Enjoy your weekend, my friend.