Yak Shaving, Taurus Pantries, and Oversharing

The other day I asked Dave, “I need to get something out of the bottom of the freezer, so can you come take notes of the inventory, and then we can go ahead and move it before the renovation?” This is yak shaving at its finest. The Urban Dictionary defines yak shaving as “Any seemingly pointless activity which is actually necessary to solve a problem which solves a problem which, several levels of recursion later, solves the real problem you’re working on.” Now the freezer is in the spot we set aside for it in the kitchen and it won’t need to be moved on Thursday when we have help. Yay!

Looking over the list, I’m reminded of something my friend said to me last night, “I’ve never met a Taurus who doesn’t have a full pantry.” Uh yeah, guilty as charged and a full fridge, and a full freezer. I even work hard to use everything up, but there is so much ABUNDANCE. I’m definitely not complaining though.

In the interest of oversharing, because why would I have a blog if I didn’t want to overshare, here is a list of everything in my deep freeze:

Duck Skin and Fat
Salted Alaskan Pollak
Pork Skin
Country Ham Chunks
Strawberry Juice
Beef Fat
Chicken Liver
Ground Buffalo
Mango Sausage
Turkey Thigh
Turkey Sausage Meat
Smoked Pork Necks
Beef Stew Meat
Cooked Turkey Wing
Crane Head (not food, legal to have)
Chicken Gizzards
Turkey Chicharrones
Country Ham Steaks
Lamb Ribs
Goat Roast
Pork Soup Bones
Turkey Hearts
Shredded Cheddar
Bread Scraps for Crumbs
Red Chile
Turkey Tomato Basil Sausage
Pork Hocks
Whole Tilapia
Parsley Cubes
Pork Roast
Buffalo Round Steak
Duck Liver
Turkey Gizzards
Green Chile
Plum Juice
Wilding Juice

A Confession

Early in the time that I moved in to 4th Base officially (not in the time when I was maintaining an apartment and spending all my time here) Dave and I used to have people over frequently. Over time that changed a lot and I bet a lot of people thought, “What gives?” One thing is that our lives just got busier, but I can think of three things that have been happening to make us not want to invite people over. One is the establishment of our garden, which takes up a significant portion of our yard making it difficult to have an overflow into the yard. The second is the deterioration of our back porch roof, which I believe we have a plan to remedy soon. The third and largest thing is the damn carpet, which I’m pleased to say will be gone soon.

Its honestly a little embarrassing admitting that these material factors have been keeping us from having people over much. Dave and I have both let our perfectionism get in the way a bit. We’re going to try not to do that again.

All this is to say: Hey friends! We want to have you over for a low key dinner and hang outs sometime after our stupid fucking oatmeal colored shag carpet is replaced with easy to clean and durable bamboo. We’ve missed you. Let’s have a movie night. We’ll keep working on improving on our sweet little house and yard to make it more hospitable, but just because it isn’t perfect is not a reason to have you here.

Mistakes Were Made

You might think that with the near complete failure to thrive that my garden has exhibited this year I’d be happy to have something, anything, growing and producing, especially a tomato. However sometimes when you get excited about the seed catalogue you let your guard down and let yourself get seduced by the beautiful pictures and the promise of high yields and sweet fruit. No matter how sweet the fruit, though, if you want to eat it you have to harvest it. I ain’t harvesting anymore damn tiny cherry tomatoes! Volunteer or no, they’ve got to go. No matter how much That Guy I Like professes to love the little buggers I’m not planting them and I’m not letting them live, because when it comes down to it the 4th Base garden is mine and so is the work of harvesting.

20160808_193336Out They Come!20160808_193806Tiny Harvest

Since I like taking pictures of my harvest, here is the first harvest of this year. Its a little sad, but hey, I’m still learning about gardening in the desert and I forgive all mistakes I’ve made. I even forgive myself for allowing the seed catalogue to persuade me to act against my best interests.



I think peaches may be one of the the most perfect foods. That’s pretty big coming from someone who professes to not really like fruit. I can think of a hundred ways to turn other fruits savory and otherwise adulterate them, but if you ask me what I would do with peaches my answer is invariably “eat them all immediately.” If pushed I might recommend canning them in light syrup, but really why try to preserve them when you could just make yourself sick eating ten in a row bent over the sink.

OK, fine, you want to do something other than just eat them plain? You want to try to save that flavor for later? Good luck my friend. Suit yourself…
Have some links:
Pickled Ginger Peaches sound like they would be lovely with cheese in the dead of Winter.

I bet Peach Ketchup would be a tasty change from the ordinary burger topping, especially on a turkey burger, or a lamb burger.

You could try making these Ginger Peach Paletas now to savor some perfect peach flavor later, but really you’re just going to eat them tomorrow afternoon while standing on the back porch. Don’t try and fool yourself.

I’m going to level with ya. I haven’t tried a single one of these recipes. I always imagine that I’m going to do something with peaches other than gobble them all up. But really, who am I kidding, I will never succeed in trying a peach recipe.

Hard Root Beer Floats

Dave and I worked on a lot of projects this weekend, garden, cooking, truck repair, scooter repair, and bunches more. A cold pick me up was definitely needed in the middle of the day even though it only got up to 93 degrees outside. Enter the Hard Root Beer Float.


(Azrael is studiously ignoring it in the background, she was intensely curious though.)

I am generally suspicious of Root Beer Floats. They are frequently overly sweet and cloying and the original recipe for this would probably have run in to the same problem, since they used Mug root beer and Jack Daniels and called it a “Root Canal.” Objectively, I totally get why someone would enjoy that, but it just isn’t my jam. Instead I used Boylan’s Root Beer, Tillamook Vanilla Ice Cream, and Evan Williams Bourbon to bring down the overall sweetness. Additionally, Dave and I split one of these and I’m glad we did. A full float would have been too much.