Monday, January 25, 2010

A Good Start to the Week

On Saturday night we went to Confession and Vespers. On Sunday morning we went to Liturgy. Basil Wenceslas was very well behaved (Thank you, Lord.) and we were all able to be in the services from start to finish without interruption. I don't know what it was, but something said by the prist during his sermon struck Basil as funny and he just kept lauging at him. Several times after the service he said, "Wasn't he funny, Dad? He said funny things." Unfortunately, during the liturgy I began to have an occular migraine. It didn't bother me too much during the service, it merely made things I was trying to look at seem all shimmery and hard to see. But after the service a headache started that pretty much knocked me out all afternoon.

About 4 o'clock I was able to get up and be productive. Athanasia had already begun cooking the lamb shanks (recipe below), so I got started on the carrots (recipe below). While we cooking Anselm Samuel was working on spelling, and Basil was playing with Devon, my 20 year old son.

During dinner we talked about getting ready for Lent. We talked about the wise and foolish virgins. (Interestingly, both St. Leo the Great and Blessed Theophylact teach that the oil in those lamps was alms. The failure of the 5 foolish virgins was to delay doing good when they had the opportunity.) We talked about the Publican and the Pharisee and how God isn't impressed by fasting, how Satan is a much better faster than we can ever be. We talked about the upcoming Forgiveness Vespers, and how we will all prostrate and ask forgiveness of everyone else in the parish. At this point Devon began to look a little bit confused. He had never heard the word prostrate and thought we were saying prostate! It was very funny. Basil demonstrated a prostration for his older brother.

Today there have been many activities. Anselm had chess class. Athanasia had a dentist appointment. A plumber came and had to cut the ceiling out of a kitchen in one of the apartments. The bathroom upstairs had a major leak that could only be accessed from underneath. I have a fan on the exposed beams and joists right now. On Thursday I'll bring in someone to do sheet rock and painting.

Tonight is 2-for-1 night at the pizza parlour around the corner. After that there is a little school work for Anselm. Then we'll all practice our ukes.

Balsamic Glazed Carrots
1/2 cup butter
2 1/2 pounds peeled and chopped carrots
6 tablespoons sugar
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

1. Melt butter in pan over medium heat.
2. Sautee carrots for 5 minutes.
3. Add balsamic vinegar and sugar.
4. Stir so all carrots are coated.
5. Cover and cook for 7 minutes.
6. Uncover, stir, pour into serving bowl.

Braised Lamb Shanks

6 lamb shanks (trim off the excess fat)
salt and pepper
1 large yellow onion, maybe two.
5 cloves of garlic
1 bottle hearty red wine
1 pound dry egg noodles

1. Brown the lamb shanks in a large skillet over high heat, as they brown add the salt and pepper.
2. Pour yourself a glass of wine.
3. When shanks are browned reduce heat to medium. Add onions and garlic. Stir everything up so the onions and garlic are in the bottom of the pan. Keep stirring by moving the shanks around in the pan (it isn't perfect but that's okay). Do this until the onions are golden. Add 1/2 of the remaining wine to the pan.
4.When it starts to boil reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until lamb is tender enough to fall off the bone. This will take at least three hours maybe 4.
5. After two hours pour yourself another big glass of wine. Pour remainder of bottle into the pan.
6. When the shanks are fully cooked remove them from the pan. Remove all meat from bones. Keep meat warm.
7. Raise heat under skillet to medium and reduce liquid, scraping the bottleof the skillet to get all the yummy stuff into the liquid.
8. Once the juices are a nice thick sauce return the meat to the pan and give it a good stirring so the bigger pieces are broken up.
9. Cook the egg noodles according to directions.
10. Serve the yummy meaty sauce over the egg noodles.

1 comment:

Mimi said...

What a blessed Sunday, other than the occular migraine.

And, wow, I'd never heard that about the oil being alms. Thank you, I needed to read that before we begin Lent.