Ode to the Stodge’s.

Dear Friend,

I hope life in the skondo is treating you well! It’s nice to be able to enjoy it, even in the summer months– you can literally walk out your door and go for a hike! I do recommend books on tape for long commutes like that. You get to feel like you’re actually reading…it’s fun to get caught up “in a book”.  Sometimes those radio shows get too yappy and don’t play enough music. We’ve been listening to the “Serial” podcast on long trips. It’s so interesting–we have no idea whodunit!

The corn, curry and rice dish you made last week sounds really good! I’ve been loving the sweetness of corn this summer, and curry, well I always love a good curry dish..I don’t cook with it enough, but now that we’re talking about it…maybe I’ll make up a batch of mango-curry egg salad you had shared a few years ago. Perfect for the summer! I use a rice cooker for all my rice / quinoa needs. If you don’t have one, I do HIGHLY recommend one. Just dump everything in and wait for it to click off…out comes well-cooked rice! (Rice is one of those two ingredient recipes I just can not do myself…Jello is the other one. Unless there’s vodka in it, I can’t make the wiggly-jiggly stuff)

I’ve been up to visit my Gram in Jacksonville quite a bit this summer; it’s relaxing to be in the green hills of Vermont and especially in a place that has such a nostalgic feeling. It’s lit a fire in me to learn a bit more about our family history, and in particular, learn those recipes that have been passed down through out the family. While it’s important to keep up with the times, there’s something very appealing about a more simple way of life–doing things yourself, using what you have and when you can, living off the land.  So that’s what I’ve been trying to do (with some exceptions) here at my home. My gram and her sisters often talk about what life was like growing up, the work on the farm they did (and didn’t do), what it was like to grow up with 6 siblings, and the foods they ate. They often talk about stodge’s, and they’ll throw the word around as if it is its own recipe.  I’ve used the word myself a bit, but didn’t fully understand the amazing-ness of stodges until this summer when I made the greater family connection. Here’s the definition:

Stodge– [stoj] nfood that is particularly filling.

The stodge I’ve come to know has a definition that is more along the lines of :

Stodge– [stoj] n. an entree or side dish that has been thrown together using ingredients that are left over, and may not normally go together, but taste delicious when combined.

A little abstract, yes; I know how much you love those step by step recipes (*_^). But the good thing about a stodge is that you can keep stodging (i.e. add cheese) and it will turn out pretty darn good. Plus! You get to use up those lose end ingredients and don’t end up wasting food! The stodge I made to show you today is an edamame & egg fried rice.

IMG_0613

The Verdict: Stodge success! I almost won’t ever going to order chinese take out again (if it wasn’t for those delicious deep fried crab rangoons!) This “fried” brown rice, complete with scrambled egg, edamame, zucchini, carrots, broccoli, onion & purple cabbage, was better than something you’d get from a take-out place…it was much less oily and therefore, much lighter. I used the rice cooker to cook up the last bit of rice I had, scrambled up a few eggs and chopped up the vegetables I had left in the refrigerator from my salads earlier in the week. Next I sauteed all the vegetables together, added the cooked rice and seasoned the mixture with 2 Tb rice vinegar,  1/4c soy sauce, and a few dashes of liquid aminos. For those who like an actual recipe to follow, try this Asian Edamame Fried Rice! I can’t speak for the recipe, but I understand “just throwing things together” isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. While this stodge has a recipe to back it up, I really like the creative freedom stodging [v.; the act of throwing together a stodge meal] allows–having a stock of staples (pasta, rice, egg, cheese, peanut butter, etc) helps too! They aren’t all winners, but it sure is fun playing around!

Since moving, I feel like I’ve been able to really set up the kitchen the way I’ve wanted and I am not wasting as much food because I’m more motivated to cook. The galley kitchen we had in Troy wasn’t conducive to making or stodging a big variety of stuff.  Also, I’m excited for this fall, my mom said she’s going to show me how to can and preserve fruits and veggies, so I’ve been finding a bunch of recipes to try–sauce, salsa and vegetable soup! I’ll post about those adventures later!

I hope you, P and the pup are staying cool.  It’s been really hot here, and there’s little escape from the humidity. Womp womp.

Anyways, Happy Stodging! (^_^)
Love, Kait

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