Violet, Sienna and Gray: 2012

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Cocooning. Verb. I did not know that!

As I write this, I am stubbornly refusing to give way to Mother Nature. I just can't start my day without time on my screened porch. The mild weather lately has spoiled me, and I have been able to read and work on my porch for most of November. I thought this morning was supposed to be mild again, so here I sit. Only to find the temperature dropping and the rain and wind moving in.

I am hoping the faux fur coat, two blankets and two dogs I have wrapped up with will keep me warm......insulated.
:)

The need to feel insulated, and cocooned reaches deep at this time. My goal has been to write inspirational, upbeat and artistic blogs, taking you along with me on my journey. So today, I have had to make a hard decision, do I fake a "happy" blog when I'm not feeling it?

We have all had so many difficult "curve balls" thrown at us lately, and I don't want my audience to become worn out with this melancholia! But, as those of you here in Louisville know, there has been some very sad news. This was more like a "wrecking ball" than a curve ball, as it involved the loss of a friends' son.

So, I am writing today about cocooning, comfort, safety, warmth and settling in for the winter! Let's make the best of it. Here's my advice:
#1-Build those fires, #2-cook up that comfort food, #3-adopt a puppy, #4-have a dinner party with your dearest friends, #5-get in a warm bath, #6-listen to a soothing song and #7-wrap up with a warm blanket! 

Ready?? Here we go!!!
#1- Seriously, is there anything better than a big fire to warm your soul? We have ours going just about every winter night, and plenty of winter mornings.

#2- OK, So, some of you think the answer to my question above is: "Yes, comfort food is better than a warm fire!" Today, I am sharing, with permission, a fabulous recipe created by my friend and neighbor, Anne West Butler, master chef extraordinaire! This recipe was introduced to me at one of Anne's Winter cooking classes. We were all delighted to taste this one, delicious!
Anne at work!

                 Butternut Squash Ravioli with Sage Butter
FILLING
1 Small winter squash such as Butternut or Hubbard or pumpkin, 1 1/2 lb.
1 Cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1/4 Cup fine dried bread crumbs
1/4 Cup crushed amaretti (about 8 cookies) (Secret Ingredient!)
1 Egg
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
Salt to taste

PASTA DOUGH (about 1 1/4 lb.)
About 3 cups Unbleached Flour
5 Eggs

SAUCE
1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter
4 Fresh Sage Leaves
1/2 Cup grated Parmigiano- Reggiano cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Oil a large baking pan. To make filling, cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds and fibers. Place the halves cut sides down, in the prepared baking pan. Bake until tender when pierced with a knife, about 1 Hour. Remove from the oven, let cook, and scoop the flesh out of the shell. Puree the flesh in a food processor or by passing through a food mill placed over a bowl. Stir in the cheese, bread crumbs, amaretti, egg, nutmeg, and salt until smooth. Cover and refrigerate until needed.

To make the pasta dough, recipe as follows: Roll out the pasta by hand or machine, cut into long strips about 4 inches wide. OR (!) Go to your local Italian deli (Lotsa Pasta) and get their pre-made pasta sheets!

Line 3 baking sheets with kitchen towels and dust the towels with flour. Keeping the remaining strips covered with another kitchen towel, lay out 1 strip on a lightly floured work surface. Fold it in half lengthwise to mark center, then unfold. Place small spoonfuls of the filling in a straight row the length of one half of the strip, about 1" from the edges and spaced about two inches apart. 

Using a pastry brush, lightly paint cool water around each mound of squash. Fold the other half strip over the strip with the filling, pressing firmly to eliminate air bubbles. Using a pastry wheel, or a sharp knife, cut between the mounds to form the ravioli. To be sure they are well sealed press firmly around all edges with a fork.  As the ravioli are cut, arrange them in a single layer on the prepared baking sheets. Cover with another towel and refrigerate until ready to cook. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. (The ravioli can be made up to 3 hours in advance. Refrigerate, and turn them often so they do not stick to the towels.)

Bring a large pot of water, three-fourths full, to a boil. Add salt to taste, then gently slip in half of the ravioli and cook until dente, 2-3 min. Using a slotted spoon, lift the ravioli from the pot, draining them well.

Meanwhile, make the suace. In a small frying pan over low heat, melt the butter. Add the sage leaves and gently saute, swirling them around in the pan, until fragrant and lightly browned on the edges, about 3 min. Spoon about half of the sage butter into a warmed shallow serving bowl, add the ravioli, and turn gently to coat. Cook the remainin ravioli in the same way and add to the bowl with the remaining sage butter, again turning gently to coat. Sprinkle with cheese and serve immediately.

Great served with roasted chicken or sausage and a sauteed tomato, veggie mix. (Or Anne's Carrots in Marsala recipe, yum!)

#3- OH, YES, I, DID!  Adopt a needy little shih tzu baby. Her name is Sienna, and her first "Mom" was very sad to give her away; but, I assured her this is  the perfect place for her!
We love our new little girl. (Well, Tucker isn't really concurring at this time.) 

Seriously, isn't she cute??


Lucy, Tucker & Sienna
#4 - Having a dinner party with your dearest friends is always comforting! I guess I won't be having my annual New Year's Eve party, as the gang is off to New Orleans to watch some football. :(


#5- Take a "Bubble Bath"!  I have to show off the work of one of my students, Debbie G. She is a very hard worker, tackles the hardest projects and never gives up!! Bravo, Debbie! She came into the studio wanting to paint this decades old picture of her oldest daughter taking a bath. I sighed deeply, oh jeez I thought, how am I going to teach some one to paint bubbles, when I have no idea how to myself! Not to mention, everyone knows painting babies is always a challenge (think Winston Churchill look a-likes; yikes, it's so hard to get those babies looking---well---babyish.)
Is this FABULOUS or what??? And Debbie has only been painting for a year! If this doesn't warm your heart just a little, you should probably seek therapy! :+)

#6-- Listen to a soothing song! 


"Keep Us" by Peter Bradley Adams
Well, this one is really a prayer. I scanned it with my Sound Hound app, and here are the lyrics for you.

When the rain set in we had nowhere left  to go
so we just stayed in bed while the thunder rolled
there's a comfort in the rain, one that lovers only know
so we lay hand in hand while the water rose...

Every season will turn til the world is upside down
rivers overflow then go underground
but in the eye of the storm, in the safety of this house
we lay hand in hand while the whole world turns wrong.

So keep us and keep us, keep us from the storm.

There's a lesson in the rain that change will always come
let us ride this wave and then greet the sun
and though the ground may shake and we'll think
we've had enough
we must raise our flags for the ones we love.

So keep us and keep us, keep us from the storm. 
Keep us and keep us and keep us from the storm.

(In memory of Taylor, and dedicated to his Family.)


#7- Finally, about that warm blanket! Two of my friends here in Louisville have opened an online Bedding Company, AMERICAN MADE DORM & HOME.

Beautiful patterns, great colors and designs, take a look! I think they even have a few more of their Christmas special, monogram-able throw blankets, for those of you here in Louisville (not on the website, as only a dozen or so are left, they make a great gift!).


Well that's my advice. We cannot deny the hard times, or the cold winter. But, perhaps we can have a plan to stay warm, be in the moment, and be grateful!
Remember: Where ever you are, BE there! :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

"I'm Painting Again!!!"
I have found myself in nine cities in eleven weeks, and a little off of my game. But, I'm back! I'm blogging and I'm painting, again!

(Please note, I clearly remember my writing teacher quoting Strunk and White,  from the writer's bible, The Elements of Style, "reserve the use of the exclamation mark for true exclamations or commands"; so, yes, I placed three of them in my title above.)

Life can throw us a curve ball or two (or eight), and somehow it does make you stronger, and perhaps places you on a different path all together. 

Sometimes a curve ball is an invitation from old friends, "come visit us in Warm Springs, VA, Charleston, SC, Sanibel Island, FL, or Jackson Hole, WY".  (Of course, I said yes to all of these wonderful friends.) And, other times it is an obligation to visit family, spend time with an ailing parent and help others through the loss of a loved one.
Or, it might be the opportunity to attend a workshop in Lexington, KY; taught by a much admired artist, Dreama Tolle Perry.


"And One Ugly Duckling", painted on Sunday at the workshop with Dreama Tolle Perry.

"I'm Painting Again" is the title of one of my favorite movie soundtracks,  from the movie "Miss Potter". It is a lovely and very inspiring story about a female artists achieving commercial success, in the early 1900's.

Listen to it here! click on link (soon I'll know how to have it playing for you). Give it ten seconds to load and it will play automatically.
I m Painting Again @ ARTISTdirect.comhttp://www.artistdirect.com/nad/window/media/page/0,,3879395-9951922,00.html

Now that I've said hello again, after all of these weeks away,  I'm off to paint in the studio!!! Until next time...stay well, and remember:

"If you want your life to be a magnificent story, (like Miss Potter's), then begin by realizing that you are the author and everyday you have the opportunity to write a new page!" (yes, exclamation mark!)
original quote by Mark Houlahan from Daily Inspirations





"I'm Painting Again"
http://www.artistdirect.com/nad/window/media/page/0,,3879395-9951922,00.html

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Remember that new journey I was open to?


Remember that new journey I was open to??? My previous blog left you wondering where I was headed to next. I was off to Charleston, SC, and then Kiawah Island. Two of my FAVORITE places in the world.

However, there was a change of plans. There was to be no vacation for me. My Father was admitted to the hospital in Philadelphia. I did have a quick visit with my good friend, Nancy, who lives in Mt. Pleasant, (across the bridge from Charleston). We spent an afternoon walking around Charleston, but never made it to a gallery! :( Then I headed to Philadelphia. Well, I did say I was going to let the journey lead me…


Nancy's fabulous porch!!!


I came across this painting in an email. It won first prize in the July, Ray Mar Art Contest. The artist is Tibor Nagy. I thought the theme and description were fitting for my current mood.

 The judge was artist Jennifer McChristian, her evaluation of the painting is fabulous! She thoroughly describes the intricacies of this painting, reading her comments will give  you a peek into the intriguing process of creating a GREAT piece of art!








July Best of Show
Award Sponsor: RayMar Art

Blackness Over the Lower Street
by Tibor Nagy
Oil 16 x 20

Entered in: 6th Annual Competition Month #8- July 2012
http://nagytibor.com

Judge's Comments: This absolutely gorgeous painting took my breath away! What a beauty! It’s an extremely captivating, moody and compelling piece which drew me in and would not let me go. Not that I wanted to go, I could gaze at this painting for hours! I cannot begin to talk about all the amazing qualities found within this remarkable painting. As an artist, Tibor displays the upmost confidence evident in his brush and palette knife work and employs a boldness that only an extremely gifted and experienced painter can pull off. The sumptuous paint application gives the word ‘painterly’ a whole new meaning! The delicious lost and found edges are handled exquisitely. This intriguing, poetic and ethereal painting is so infused with emotion, empathy and melancholia one cannot help but to be profoundly moved. It is clear that the artist painted this haunting imagery with intense sincerity, raw emotion and expressive energy. This extremely multi-layered painting reminds me of a ghostly entity. The cool, subdued and gorgeously diffused greys invoke a sense of isolation and loneliness. I love the way the building is subtly integrated with the foreground, as it rises from the earth into the misty air, giving it a poetic and otherworldly feel. The artist has truly developed his own voice that makes his paintings immediately recognizable and distinctive. A masterpiece indeed! - Jennifer McChristian

And, then I noticed another finalist. I love the painting, and the title. Again, how appropriate for my mood and the theme of my latest posts!























Finalist
Award Sponsor: RayMar Art
Judge: Jennifer McChristian

12 x 16 Oil

Judge's Comments: This immensely delightful and airy plein air says so much with so little. Aside from capturing the freshness and vitality of a ‘new day’ the artist has managed to simplify and edit his shapes beautifully, giving this painting a bold and abstract quality. While some plein air painters simply recreate or copy a scene, Thomas translates this scene to it’s core essence by using simple flat shapes, a serene composition, and luminescent colors. Subtle value shifts and painterly brush strokes along with a sumptuous color palette are used to capture the nuances of morning light. The opulent and vibrant strokes of pinks and mauves sparkle against the predominate complementary greens. The delicate balance of warm and cool greens creates a sense of depth and atmosphere. The group of ducks gently floating in the calm waters complete the painting by adding a sense of scale and whimsy. - Jennifer McChristian


I have been in Philadelphia for eleven days now. It has been a sad and bittersweet time. I have enjoyed time with my dear brothers, sister-in-laws, and nieces. I am heading to Louisville for a short break, to spend my birthday with my immediate family (and the dogs!!!).

Mr. Sienna and Ms. Violet


and one more thought for today:

Robert Frost Quote

                                                       until next time! Kathy



       http://nagytibor.com   --------Tibor Nagy's website!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

A new start, a new story, a new day in the mountains! 
I feel sure you have been missing me! I have been out of the studio and have begun a new journey; and as many of you know, this entire past year has been a whole new journey for me! But, each year brings so many changes for all of us. I think of my students this past year, and the changes in their lives---announcements of new grand-babies, new jobs for their children (and spouses), exciting trips to exotic places, health issues, the loss of a parent, a college acceptance letter, and all of these things that bring about a change in our lives.


Sabbatical – gap, break, respite. Vacation. Ahhh, it’s good for the soul! I am out of  the studio for a two-week break from routine, before the "school year" starts and my classes resume. I will be in three separate locations, and I want to share a little about each unique place with you.

The first leg of my journey brings me to Warm Springs, Virginia. We are staying with some friends who have a home located adjacent to the historic Homestead Resort. 

The days have been filled with fresh mountain air, and slightly ambitious hikes followed by cheeseburgers and fries at the local greasy spoon! Mostly, the days and evenings are filled with laughter, as my husband and I are reunited with four of his college buddies and their wives.

Coffee and cocktails on the veranda…..so relaxing……and at this moment I am tucked under the eaves of the veranda, writing this and listening to the sound of pouring rain falling on the dense mountain foliage. It's almost deafening! Yet, absolutely lovely.

Yesterday, we made a visit to a delightful Art Gallery, and left with a new friend. Barbara, the gallery owner, was passionate about her work, and it showed. We had a long visit with her and listened to her talk with enthusiasm, about the artists that she represents. The gallery was very well put together, and she represents some very talented artists. My friend bought a delicious painting, by a pastel artist, Sydney McGinley. Sydney works quite lavishly in pastels, truly creating paintings more than drawings in chalk. "Figuratives" are her main genre and I'm including an example here. The Warm Springs Gallery link is www.warmspringsgallery.com


The gallery trip was followed by a long afternoon soaking, and floating, in one of the historic Jefferson pools. They have been a tourist attraction for two hundred years! The water is 98 degrees and the pools are housed in beautifully designed rotundas. The warm mineral water is believed to have healing properties. Thomas Jefferson frequented them often. The architecture was wonderful, as was the warm water.
 

A sabbatical, a vacation, is for recharging, and I have decided it is also a time for taking new steps!

 I recently saw a magazine ad for a cruise ship and it said, “start a new story”. It struck me, that we can think of each day as the start of a new story!  As I take this break, I’m going to tune in and be open to the wonderful new things my little journey will teach me.
           
For example, at the mineral pools, I tried something I have never done before. I descended a small dark stairwell, into a small dark space filled with rushing water! Why would I do that? Well, the warm springs rush through the space, flooding over you in a warm embracing massage! So, the moral of the story, trying something new, even if it looks a little scary-- it just might bring you unexpected JOY!

In a few hours I am off to my next location! I can't wait to see what is in store for me!

Sunday, August 12, 2012



"For my part I know nothing with any certainty but the sight of the stars makes me dream."

— Vincent Van Gogh



Look Sharp Core!



— Vino

Inspiration from a text! Thank you Susan! I missed a text last night, reminding me to view the meteor shower in the night sky. I will make sure I'm out there tonight! Years ago, I was fortunate enough to watch the Perseid Meteor Shower from the top of a mountain in rural Vermont! Fabulous! 

I taught a workshop yesterday, and when Don McLean's "Starry, Starry Night" rotated onto my music playlist, we all paused to remember dear Vincent Van Gogh. So, it's only fitting with this theme that I should include his famous painting and another quote from him, below! 


Perseid Meteor Shower 2012: Annual 'Shooting Star' Show To Hit Night Sky This Weekend   

The Perseid meteor shower occurs each year in late July and early August when the Earth passes through the dusty remains of the comet Swift-Tuttle. In the night sky, the meteor shower appears to radiate out of the constellation Perseus, hence, its name: Perseid meteor shower.





I Can't See Youperseid-hungary-ruin.jpg


The Perseid meteor shower occurs each year in late July and early August when the Earth passes through the dusty remains of the comet Swift-Tuttle. In the night sky, the meteor shower appears to radiate out of the constellation Perseus, hence, its name: Perseid meteor shower. 


Great balls of fire!
During your meteor watch you might catch sight of a few outstandingly bright meteors. You may even see a fireball that leaves a long enduring vapor trail lasting for many seconds, or a bolide, which is an exploding meteor whose flight across the sky ends with a silent, strobe-like flash capable of casting a shadow.
Just seeing one of these kinds of meteors can make your whole night worthwhile. 
And below, a couple of unbelievable pictures from the Hubble. If you love these works of art you can get an app for that! I have one simply named "Hubble", there are many to choose from, and some will send you an image a day! They are breathtaking!

Image of the Day Archives

So Hold Me, Messier 99, in Your Long Arms
So Hold Me, Messier 99, in Your Long ArmsCredit: ESA/Hubble & NASA. Acknowledgement: Matej NovakThursday, July 19, 2012: This Hubble Space Telescope image shows a detailed view of the spiral arms on one side of the galaxy Messier 99. Messier 99 possesses a structure somewhat similar to the Milky Way, with long, large and clearly defined spiral arms. Astronomers refer to such a structure as a grand design spiral. Messier 99 lies around 50 million light-years away in the Virgo Cluster, the closest cluster of galaxies to us.

Catspaw
CatspawCredit: ESO/R. Gendler & R.M. HannahoeWednesday, July 18, 2012: A new photo of the Cat's Paw Nebula combines exposures from the MPG/ESO 2.2-metre telescope of the La Silla Observatory in Chile with 60 hours of exposures made by expert amateur astronomers Robert Gendler and Ryan M. Hannahoe. The additional colour information from Gendler and Hannahoe.brings out the faint blue nebulosity in the central region, not seen in the original ESO image. The Cat’s Paw Nebula (NGC 6334) lies in the constellation of Scorpius (The Scorpion). It is relatively near to Earth, about 5500 light-years away.



And finally, a quote from our dear friend Vincent Van Gogh.
The Starry Night, Van Gogh, 1889.
The night is even more richly coloured than the day. . . . If only one pays attention to it, one sees that certain stars are citron yellow, while others have a pink glow or a green, blue and forget-me-not brilliance. And without my expiating on this theme, it should be clear that putting little white dots on a blue-black surface is not enough.



— Vincent van Gogh, letter to sister, September 1888

Ultra Vivid Scene
Happy stargazing!













Thursday, August 9, 2012

I KNEW IT!! THE FINE ARTS WERE AN OLYMPIC CATEGORY!!

I knew it, I knew it, I knew it!! Of course the fine arts were an Olympic event!
Olympia im Herzen von London

YES, PAINTING, DRAWING, SCULPTURE AND WRITING WERE OLYMPIC EVENTS!!!!
I may have actually heard that fact years ago, but every time the Olympics come back around, a nagging thought lingers in the back of my mind. I think of all of the artists in the world, working hours and hours every day to be better at their art, or even the best at it.

 We all know how hard those athlete's work to be the very best at their passion. We see it, hear it, watch it; all day, everyday. Over and over and over.  How many ESPN channels are there now?? And wow, with all of those endorsements, and all of that praise showered upon you. The whole world watching and amazed by your every little accomplishment! I don't want to sound negative or bitter here, I am just honestly puzzled.

Here's a fact most of you know already know about me. I am not passionate about sports. There, I said it. Period. True. (I know I am going out on a limb here, it is positively unAmerican to not glorify and worship sports.) I know, I've just risked my popularity.

 I have spent decades of my life listening to people talk about sports. Golf, tennis, swimming, training for a marathon; yep, I've heard about all of the trials, the effort, the challenges.  Don't even get me started on our kids and sports!!! Wow, I've listened to how athletes must constantly work and practice, everyday, in order to improve......in order to finish that marathon.

I guess you know where I'm going with this. A couple of year's ago, a dear friend of mine, who excels at the game of golf,  (Country Club champ, how many years running? I hear she plays a Beautiful game!) was here for dinner with her husband. As we were in the kitchen tossing a salad, she looked around the great room, and waved her hand at all of my paintings, and said "Kathy, why do you work so hard at this?" I stared back blankly. She continued, "I mean, your classes are full. You've won awards. Your work is great, so why do you work so many long, hard hours everyday, when you don't have to?"

Ahhh, to be an artist. So misunderstood. Doesn't she know I'm competing in the Fine Art Olympics? Or at least trying to get into the regionals! (Fellow artists, you know what I'm talking about; OPA Eastern Regionals, perhaps?) Seriously, I don't want to improve for any other reason than I know that I can, and I must. If God's given me a talent, and a passion, how can I let a day go by without nurturing it, honing it? Sharing it with others; especially my students.

My husband begged me out of the studio the other night. He said I just had to come down and see this story about a high school age Olympian, who gushed on and on about her passion (swimming or soccer, I didn't really pay attention) and she thanked everyone for supporting her, etc, So many people gave their lives to helping her follow this passion. Making sure she could devote thousands of hours towards this gift. She simply must follow this passion! It was a great story. Can I go back to the studio now?

One more thing, someone once mentioned a little mind game; similar to "What one food would you have if you were on a deserted island the rest of your life, and could only have that one food? But, the question was this "Would you accept a million dollars, with the contingency that you would have to  give up your one true passion, for the rest of your life?" So, the point of the game is tell me what that one passion would be, and could you accept that offer? It makes me very sad when people have no answer to this, and I've seen it many times. Life, and passion, in so many forms are out there-go grab one, and run with it!!! Be inspired by those Olympic athletes, if that works for you. Or perhaps, be inspired by that quiet artist, musician or writer, working alone in their little studio!

Here is the full Olympics and Fine Arts article that I came across in the blog, Artist Daily.

It's that time again: the time for nations big and small to meet and lay claim to their dominance based on overinflated biceps--um, I mean, athletic prowess. I'm talking about the Olympics, of course.
Whether you're an avid Games-watcher or you could care less, chances are you didn't know that the Olympics used to be more than just a brawn-fest. It also used to award gold medals to artists.

Fine art competitions were originally part of the Olympics in ancient Greek times and were later reinstated, during the 1912 Games.
Fine art competitions were originally part
of the Olympics in ancient Greek times
and were later reinstated, during the 1912 Games.
As Mental Floss notes, fine art competitions were originally part of the Olympics in ancient Greek times and were later reinstated, during the 1912 Games.
The first modern Olympics were held in 1896 in Athens. The man who revived the Games, Pierre de Fr├ędy, Baron de Coubertin, was also the force behind the inclusion of art as sport.
According to Mental Floss, "Coubertin's vision for the modern Olympics was only partly realized with the Athens Games. In the ensuing years, he devoted himself to reestablishing art competitions--a staple of the Games in ancient Greece--as part of the quadrennial Olympiad. Coubertin felt strongly that art was as much a part of the Olympic ideal as athletics. As documented in Richard Stanton's thoroughly researched book on the subject, The Forgotten Olympic Art Competitions, Coubertin once wrote: 'Deprived of the aura of the art contests, Olympic games are only world championships.'"

From the Editors of American Artist magazine
It wasn't until the 1912 Summer Olympics in Sweden, however, that Coubertin's vision was finally realized: "We are to reunite in the bonds of legitimate wedlock a long-divorced couple--Muscle and Mind." The original fine art categories were architecture, sculpture, painting, music, and literature. All entries were to be inspired by the theme of sport.
After the 1928 Games, painting was split into three categories: drawing, graphic art, and painting. These changed again in 1932, this time to painting, prints, and watercolors, and they continued to morph alongside the larger trends of the art world.
The fine art portion of the Olympics was discontinued in 1948 because artists were deemed "professionals," and Olympic athletes were required to be amateurs. And to think--you coulda been a contender!

Jean Jacoby's Olympic winning drawing.
Jean Jacoby's Olympic winning
figure drawing.
Jean Jacoby remains the only artist to win two gold medals; he won his second with the figure drawing, titled Rugby.
Whether you're an Olympic-level painter or more of a weekend watercolorist, why not challenge yourself to reach further with your art this summer? Find out how you stack up by entering in our own version of the Olympics, the 75th Anniversary American Artist competition.
--Amy

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Tuesday's Recipe: Hint-5 Things You Never Knew About the Tomato

It's August. How can I share anything other than tomato recipes? (Yes, plural!) I am also going to share five little things you never (I'm betting) knew about the tomato. And, yes, this picture is actually the tomatoes from my garden! What to do with them all???
But, let's look into a little tomato folklore!

First:  Did you know in Colonial times, it was thought that the tomato was poisonous and one bite would turn your blood to acid; they were grown for decoration only.
Second:   The early bad reputation came from the fact that they looked like the plant "deadly nightshade" of the Solanacae family, relating it to the German "wolf peach"; yes, used to call up the werewolves!!
Third:  The French call it the "pomme d'amore", Apple of Love. But, historians generally think  this was a misuse of the Spanish term, "pome dei Moro" or Apple of the Moors.
Fourth:   It is generally accepted that the tomato originated in South America, was taken back to Europe and then brought, the long way, to America.
Fifth:  The reason most of us think it is a vegetable, rather than the fruit that it is, is because our early government threw it into a higher taxable category by calling it a vegetable!



Now for the good part! This first recipe is from the cookbook, " Around My French Table" by Dorie Greenspan. (Awesome cookbook, sent to me for Christmas, by my sister-in-law, who is a chef and caterer in Philadelphia.) The cook book is available through my website, www.kathryngrayart.com, look under Art Books for Cook Books. Watermelon, Tomatoes and Mozarella!  Ok, so I promised more than one recipe! My DEAR friend went out of her way to drop off this wonderful Tomato Pie recipe today. We all have good ones, but, I'm not sure if it's just her touch, or if this truly is one of the better ones! Thank you, K. for your super speedy reply today! Enjoy! (But, seriously, you could buy the pie shell!)