Monday, August 16, 2004

Chowder Or Bisque?

What a great weekend!

Taking advantage of the mild winter at last, I set up a pretty fair play space out in the shed in the backyard, and had back-to-back-to-back boys over all weekend long! Boys in chains! Boys to whip up on the cross! Boys in the sling that I braided myself out of plastic bags from the supermarket! It was great! All weekend long! I lost track of the number of boys I whipped, but for sure I had six boys in chains!


Maybe not.


But it was a good weekend nonetheless.

I had to work on Saturday from 7 am to 11 pm. This pretty much put the ix-nay on any Friday night activity other than the Olympics. Work on Saturday went well, and afterwards, I made a beeline for the Farmer's Market in Doylestown, in hopes of meeting up with Farmer Guy. Probably due to it being the middle of growing season, Farmer Guy has been rarely seen on the Rialto (a.k.a. the porch of Starbuck's).

And there he was, deeply tanned beneath his straw hat. And Jiminy Crickets! What fare! We chatted and caught up, and before I realized it, Farmer Guy was filling up a bag for me with heirloom tomatoes, fingerling potatoes, and some beautiful peppers. After the market shut down, Farmer Guy and I headed down to Starbuck's, me toting my sack of veggies. Actor Guy showed up, and there I was, pretty awestruck by the sight of two muscular, blond, blue-eyed men. Woof!

Farmer Guy had to head back to the farm, and I lingered and enjoyed the afternoon with Actor Guy. (The Ford Modeling Agency has work for him. "Yeah, but it's just print work. I'm not tall enough for runway," he demures. I guess the Ford Modeling Agency isn't plugged into gay porn, right? Alas for that.)

Then I hit the gym. Totally on a roll with the gym lately! And I'm really happy about that.

At the supermarket on the way home, I had to consider: what to do with tomatoes and potatoes?

Duh! Chowder!

Now, help me out here. If it's made with milk, it's chowder, and if it's made with cream, it's bisque, right? Or is bisque just french for chowder? Noooo... I think that 'bisque' refers to any soup that has cream. Tomato bisque, onion bisque... Right. So chowder must be made with milk.

So just what was it I made? Was it chowder or bisque?

You, the reader, decide! Here's what I did...

Melted about two tablespoons of butter in my trusty marmite, added flour and made my roux. Then a nice dollop of Breakstone's Fat Free Sour Cream, a little container of light cream, and then about half of a pint of milk. Stirring all the while, and having it steam but never simmer, I kept it nice and thick. I let it reduce while I gave the potatoes a boil in salt water. Into the bisk went some frozen white corn, and then the drained potatoes, and finally the tomatoes. Then, I added some peeled and veined shrimp, and finished it off with some white pepper.

Oh man! It was good! And Farmer Guy's tomatoes! I swear I haven't had tomatoes that good in years! I am suddenly a big believer in heirloom tomatoes, that Farmer Guy went all the way to Lancaster County to track down. Y'see, when tomatoes are hybridized, the qualities they want to accentuate are those that make tomatoes sell: red, round, difficult to bruise, and full of juice. What's missing from the equation? How about taste???!! Heirloom tomatoes are pretty much unchanged. So they look pretty crappy. Mottled and small. But the taste is amazing! Just an explosion! Nothing tastes like a good tomato.

Because hurricanes were threatening on Saturday night, I deferred to my father and decided to forgo my trip to the Bike Stop. But, as the hurricane failed to materialize in these parts, I waited until my father went to bed, then headed down to the Raven. It was a slow night at the Raven. No visiting bears to speak of, just a lot of locals in flipflops and International Male-esque duds. Not my scene. So I had a beer and headed for home, getting to bed before 2pm.

Sunday was enlivened by a visiting reader!

He and a friend were fresh from the Philly Phisters weekend playparty at Rivendell, just to the north of me. Apparently the weekend was a wee bit on the poorly planned side, but they were delaying the long drive back to Boston with a stopover in New Hope. We met up at the Starbucks, visited Le Chateau Exotique [sic], which has some reeeeally intersting rubber floggers at verrry reasonable prices (I hope to be showing one off at Delta next month), and ended the day with pizza.

For dinner? What else? Leftover chowder! Dear Old Dad sure didn't complain, and neither did I.

And now it's back to work.

*sigh* Worked a 10.25 hour day today. And it's a long way till Friday.

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