Duck Egg Nutmeg Waffles
All this talk about writing has me thinking about reading. If you notice the nuance, I'm not to the point of reading, yet! But three new books have me very excited to take up the practice again, as soon as the weather is a little nippier.
Will It Waffle?, by Daniel Shumski. The title intrigues me, and the book's premise, which is why have a waffle maker on your kitchen counter dedicated to making just one thing: waffles? This has been my perennial thought, too! Long ago I began a flirtation with extreme waffling with my original recipe, Lentil-Soup-Walnut-Loaf-Waffle, a bold experiment for a beginner. My recipe began as a simple soup, which lacked color and flavor, so I dumped it into a loaf pan with eggs, bread crumb topping, walnuts, and a squirt of ketchup down the middle, and though I baked it for a goodly hour, it still had not congealed. Not a quitter, I looked around my kitchen for options, and beheld the waffle maker. Inspiration struck, and I scooped the baked lentil walnut loaf into my waffle maker. The wafffles looked like hay flakes, or all-day dog biscuits, when they were done, and no one would eat them. (My family could be overcritical of my cooking, I feel). Daniel Shumski picks up where I left off, making many things into waffles, some successfully. I'm definitely going to try his falafel waffles soon. First I have to find the book. This morning I invented Duck Egg-Nutmeg waffles.
In the Kingdom of Ice: the polar voyage of the USS Jeanette, by Hampton Sides, is a rediscovery of
a 19th c. doomed arctic expedition. I am thrilled that there is new material to add to the genre, so I don't have to re-read Endurance, Shackleton's Incredible Voyage.
The idea behind the polar voyage of the USS Jeanette, was a 19th c. scientific belief that there was a shallow, ice-free sea at the polar cap, surrounded by pack ice. There may be one someday soon, but then it was a flimsy precept for an arctic expedition in a wooden vessel, but what hey? Of course, the outcome was predictably terrible, and the Jeanette never made it to the warm polar beach, instead capsizing in the icy ocean.
But here is the hook: not all perished when the ship went down. Some of the exploration party survived, dragging their life boats across shifting ice that moved them north as fast as they traveled south. After many harrowing ordeals, and months of frozen hardship, they finally arrived at open water. Three life boats were launched, but almost immediately, became separated, and each boat met a different fate! Now that's my idea of value! This will be fine reading in mid-January.
The best for last, and the book I have long wished I could read, if I had known it existed, is being published in November! It is Laura Ingalls Wilder's, memoir, Pioneer Girl, the adult version of life on the prairie that Laura wrote in the 1930's, but which no publisher wanted. In this book there is domestic abuse, love triangles, and a whisky drunk who sets himself afire.
At last! We can read what it was really like to live under the banks of Plum Creek in a dug out house with dirt falling on the bed, and livestock coming through the ceiling, and just one little parchment window square of daylight for 7 months of a prairie winter. And, scarlet fever. And, childbirth. How did Ma not go mad?
I did devour the Little House books in 2 weeks when I was in the 5th grade, but even at the time, I thought Ma should have told Pa, Heck no! We're not leaving town to go out to Indian Territory, so I can live with my girls in a sod hut with a blanket for a doorway, because you're getting itchy. I can't wait to read this memoir! I'd definitely have been the kind of woman who stayed in a nice house back East, thank you.
p.s. I'm still in my writing class, and still underperforming. On Week 3, during class,