News and Opinion from Anne Barone to Keep You Chic & Slim

|| 26 november 2014

Happy Chic & Slim Thanksgiving 2014

As I wrote earlier on the Chic & Slim website, this year I was missing the jewel colors of autumn blossoms. Susan in Hamilton kindly sent the lovely Thanksgiving card below. So I had autumn flowers to enjoy after all. Much thanks to Susan.

Thanksgiving card with orange and gold blossoms in a basket

As every year on this day dedicated to being thankful for our all those things that make our lives rich, I am overwhelmed with gratitude for all of you in the Chic & Slim sorority that make my life and work so rewarding and fun.

Wishing Thanksgiving blessings to you all — Anne Barone

Thanksgiving Vegetable

Is it turnips, green beans, or just a bowl of greens?

One thing I have discovered living in various locales in the USA is that the vegetable served with the traditional Thanksgiving turkey, dressing, and pumpkin pie varies with region.When I was growing up in Southwestern Oklahoma, everyone we knew served green beans on Thanksgiving. These were usually someone’s garden-grown, home-canned green beans that were cooked for hours with salt pork. I did not much care for this slimy mess. (Oh, the joy when I discovered the lightly-cooked French method of cooking green beans.)

When I went to live in South Texas, my friends there replaced Thanksgiving mashed potatoes with mashed turnips and did not serve green beans. Here where I live now, many people serve greens — turnip, collards, kale. It does not seem to matter which as long as they are greens. Is this perhaps a Southern tradition?

Certainly turnips or greens are a nutritional and caloric improvement over those swimming-in-watery-fat green beans of my childhood Thanksgivings.

For me, I prefer red cabbage with apple, for color, nutrition and lower calorie count. And I love the taste of this dish with roast turkey and dressing.

Traditional foods are always an important part of Thanksgiving. But it is fun occasionally to add new items to the menu. Nevertheless, my Oklahoma relatives consistently pass up my red cabbage and apple dish in favor of my nephew’s garden-grown, home-canned, cooked in salt pork green beans.

That’s fine. All I ask is that they don’t put marshmallows on the sweet potatoes. “Candied” sweet potatoes are not a vegetable. They are an abomination.

be chic, stay slim — Anne Barone

image: turnips grown in my son’s potager, with such a sweet and delicate flavor that I have been eating them raw

|| 25 november 2014

Thanksgiving Blessings

Our Thanksgiving blessings began this past weekend. Saturday we had a wonderful three inches of rain. Three (3) inches. Seeing a lake in my drought-ravaged, and watering-restricted garden was a beautiful sight. Of course, once the downpour abated, the thirsty ground soaked up all the water. My plants are happy. The coral berry shrubs are showing their autumn magenta blooms.

I celebrated the generous rainfall Saturday by baking scones for afternoon tea. Scones always taste best to me on cool, gray, rainy days. These scones tasted especially good topped with a little wild flower honey.

Bizarre reactions

I was pampering myself because on Friday afternoon I had my flu shot as well as a Tdap vaccination: that combo shot to protect you against Tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis. I hadn’t had a tetanus shot since I was attacked by that Rottweiler 12 years ago. Even though previously vaccinated against diphtheria and pertussis (the latter often referred to as whooping cough) recommendations are that adults be revaccinated periodically.

I take a flu shot every year without problems so I did not expect any reaction to that shot. But the Tdap information sheet I was required to read alerted me that the majority of people who take the vaccination have some sort of reaction. The lengthy list included slight fever, nausea, and headache. I did notice the listed mild blurring of vision later in the evening when I was trying to do some filing of business receipts. But that was gone by morning.

My bizarre reaction was that about two hours after I took the shots, I became very hungry. Very hungry. Afternoon tea made no dent in that hunger and neither did a generous supper. I gave in and ate a small snack before bedtime. At 4 AM Saturday morning a hungry and grumbling stomach woke me. Fortunately this ravenous hunger passed about 18 hours after taking the shots. Thank goodness! The LAST thing you want during a holiday week with all those tempting foods is ravenous hunger.

Of course, living in locations where one is threatened with everything from malaria to plague as I did, I have had a lot of vaccinations over the years. But this is the first time I can remember excessive hunger in reaction to a vaccination.

Remember moderation for holiday meals, — Anne Barone