Stardust to Stardust

For this perpetual student, Coursera has got to be the best invention ever.  So far, I have taken a philosophy course out of University of Edinburgh (land of Hume and haggis, what’s not to love?), exercise physiology from University of Melbourne, science of gastronomy from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Big Bang and Dark Energy from the University of Tokyo.  This last course, in particular, has fired my imagination.  In my less lucid moments I think I must have missed my calling as a particle physicist.  Or theoretical physicist.  Or what I really want to be, the Director of the Universe 🙂  I confess I never thought about the point of SLAC when I was at Stanford, and certainly when CERN went live, I still didn’t know what all the fuss was about.  Don’t we all want to know where we come from, and how it will all end?  I am fascinated by people who REALLY WANT TO KNOW what happened at the BIg Bang — not three minutes out, or one trillionth of a second out, or ten to the negative 26th second out, but the moment.  Stardust to  stardust . . . .

Up next, all about the angst of Kierkegaard from the University of Copenhagen, and something about city planning from University of Pennsylvania.  Massive Open Online Courses — who would have thought this twenty years ago?  I don’t participate in the forums or discussions, but there is something really cool about the idea of thousands of people all over the world participating in the same class, all — presumably — in search of human knowledge.  Now, if I could just get The Teenager to think of knowledge, rather than The Grade, as the goal!

Overheard at the Farmers’ Market, from a 4-year old girl:  “You can never have too much greens!”

CSA Share Week 18:  strawberries (2+ flats!), rhubarb, hakurei turnips, broccoli rabe, spinach, Swiss chard, onions, green onions, eggplant, tomatoes, eggs

Week 18 Recipes:  roasted turnips; strawberry rhubarb crisp; chard and green onion quiche (and who knew guinea pigs love chard stems!); curried lentil/barley/tomato stew; turnip greens with toasted garlic and bread crumbs; broccoli rabe in goat cheese sauce; eggplant in tomato basil sauce with rigatoni

You Mean, Aside from the National Park?

Quote of the Day:  “What is there to do in Estes Park other than shopping?”


I am surprised I still have a tongue left.

The Three Sisters were guests during my third (and final) innkeeping stint of the summer, about a week before The Flood of 2013.  They were actually nice people, just high-maintenance (and unaware that they were high-maintenance).rmnp hail stormDH and I went on a short hike one afternoon and got caught in a hail storm. Luckily, we were no longer in the open at that point and took shelter under some pine trees, but we were still less than half-way home . . . .

After five days of steady rain, Estes Park is under water; the bed and breakfast is in reasonable shape except for the innkeeper’s basement flat, which is flooded.  And, spur Highway 66 is in danger of failing a few hundred yards up the road from the inn.  The town will bounce back, as it always has.

CSA Share Week 15:  Asian eggplant, summer squash, green beans, spaghetti squash, carrots, strawberries

Week 15 Recipes:  eggplant pasticcio (from The Greens Cookbook by Deborah Madison: did not use mushrooms, used The Teenager’s heirloom tomatoes, and even though recipe did not call for squash, I threw it in there anyway and it turned out great); green beans with olive tapenade; roasted spaghetti squash and carrots

CSA Share Week 16:  garlic, Russian kale, dragon’s breath beans, potatoes, baby bok choy, Asian eggplants, summer squash, onions, strawberries, acorn squash, eggs

Week 16 Recipes:  eggplant pasticcio (because it was so good last week :-)); dragon’s breath beans simmered with tomatoes (the beans were surprisingly bland — definitely not a CSA highlight); sautéed garlic ginger bok choy; roasted potatoes; kale quiche (the Russian kale was sweeter than the usual kale and worked beautifully with the lovely orange and black cherry tomatoes from The Teenager’s garden)

CSA Share Week 17:  Asian eggplant, summer squash, rhubarb, strawberries, arugula, spinach, potatoes, carrots, onions, beets (kept the greens, gave away the beets), green beans

Week 17 Recipes:  rhubarb-apple betty (I think I had more than 1 pound of rhubarb, and even with halving the amount of sugar, the betty had the right balance of sweet and tart; recipe from The Greens Cookbook by Deborah Madison); Zuni stew (also from The Greens Cookbookused squash, green beans, garlic, and onions from CSA, and heirloom tomatoes from The Teenager’s garden); white beans and eggplant gratin (from The Greens Cookbook); beet greens quiche; spinach noodle pudding (from The Greens Cookbook); roasted carrots/potatoes/green beans; arugula lasagna (recipe found here, and fabulous, even though my arugula was a week old, and I did not have shallots so used onion instead!  My hat off to Annelle Williams, a wonderful cook!)