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Joanne Bourne
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I saw the documentary and loved it. I'll look around for the book. Often these books-based-on-documentary have the most wonderful illustrations.
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on What We're Reading in August at Word Wenches
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I didn't know there was a new Johanna Lindsey out. Thanks for mentioning it. I'll have to go pick it up next time I'm in a bookstore. Yes.
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on What We're Reading in August at Word Wenches
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Tempted on those saffron crocuses. Seriously tempted. I'd like some autumn flowers too. What I see here around me is more spring flowers. Hmmm
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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Huh. Nice to see an American YA historical tackling such a difficult subject. Not her first 'difficult' book. She wrote 'Speak'. My daughter read it in school and was greatly impressed and moved.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on What We're Reading in August at Word Wenches
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I've read most of Chesney's Regencies. Years ago, my library didn't carry many Romance novels, but did carry Chesney because she also wrote mysteries. She's always been a good solid writer. Mary Jo's newest, Not Quite a Wife, is just lovely. A fine, intelligent characterization of the heroine -- both strength and sensitivity.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on What We're Reading in August at Word Wenches
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I will keep an eye out for this in my local library. Sounds interesting.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on What We're Reading in August at Word Wenches
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I like the British title better and wish the publishers had kept it. It is estimated there are one million words in the English language. I do not know how many two-word combinations this makes, but somewhere among them must have been a better choice. (jo, who really wonders about the whole business of naming books.)
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on What We're Reading in August at Word Wenches
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I do think cooking is becoming more sophisticated in the last generation. The Fifties may have been a bit of a culinary wasteland.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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I can't think of that one, but it sounds interesting. I hope somebody comes up with a title.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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I, too, hate overwhelming smells where I live or work. I even avoid beautiful fragrant flowers too close to the house. I don't want to smell even wonderful smells day and night. *g* I used to keep rose water on my spice shelf. Don't have any right now. I used it for making gulab jamun. Lovage, tansy and borage would have been in the kitchen garden for anyone with a bit of ground. I guess folks still eat the first and last of these.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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I have three different chili spice right now. One is typically Mexican -- my chipotle powder. These are jalapenos that have been smoked before grinding. You can smell the 'smokiness' of them. Very nice. Aleppo pepper. This is from Turkey, as the name says. These are not ground. They're in little dried squiggles from finely diced bits of pepper. This is what I use in Indian cooking, though I don't suppose it's technically an Indian spice. And then I have the crushed red pepper flakes of a sort that might come right from an Italian restaurant, ready for shaking on pizza. Not terribly hot. I also have dried sweet pepper. Paprika. Great stuff. I will say that you have now planted in me a desire to grow saffron crocus ...
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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I love these meals-in-books, especially Grace's. Some authors include recipes. Way to go, says I.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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I like a bit of bay in tomato-based soups. I don't have any on hand right now, but generally I do.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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Cats are not exactly sneak thieves. They just figure they own everything. All your cheese R belong to us, says the cat. Basil. Yes. Basil is good. But there's also bay laurel, though I hadn't thought about it. Bay Laurel has been known and used as seasoning since antiquity. Certainly it could have been on a Regency herb shelf. An 1812 recipe for eel says "... add a little parsley and shallots, half a bay leaf, one clove, salt and pepper, twenty or thirty small onions ..."
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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I am going to confess to not using lavender much at all. Maybe in one or two French recipes ... and not in ones I make much. But I love lavender in a little muslin bag in the bathtub, or a lavender scented candle in the bathroom as I bathe. Or lavender soap. I love to brush by it, growing in a pot in the garden. Not very many scents I like as much as simple lavender.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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Cool and interesting about cumin. And yes, I use it in my Indian recipes all the time. But it in large amounts. And, of course, it's a major ingredient in my chillies. Now I want to go make chilli ...
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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The words about salt and pepper are very good ones. We don't use pepper as carefully as we might. Don't get full value out of it and often use somewhat stale pepper. I use a little less salt than I really like and then add more at the table if I need it. I do that to avoid oversalting. It's hard to remedy that mistake.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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They would certainly have had sage in Regency England. Culpeper's Herbals says, "sage is a shrubby plant growing in every garden". You can't ask for a better source than that. Medieval people seem to have been better gardeners than me. They grew all kinda stuff. Culpeper says, "Sage is boiled to bathe the body and the legs in the Summer time, especially to warm cold joints, or sinews, troubled with the palsy and cramp, and to comfort and strengthen the parts." So if your parts need strengthening, you could drop a few sprigs of sage in your next bath.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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Interesting spicy cookies. Rum raisins, you say ... I've always liked very spicy traditional gingerbread, though lately I think it doesn't agree with me as much as it did when I was younger. I may have to turn the spices down a notch. Our local crop right now is peaches. I made a lovely peach tart this morning. None in the refrige though. It all got eaten up. I have one peach left. Should I have it for breakfast ...?
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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All of my cat have loved cheese. Maybe because it's a standard part of the food in the household. Mostly they like plain yoghurt too, though I had one cat who would crouch over eating it and grimace the whole time, twisting her mouth, making cat faces.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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The deer have the most excellent taste in garden produce. They love to nip off the tenderest, most succulent little sprouts. And yes. One pretty much adopts interesting cuisines wholesale. Chilli and tacos are standard meals ... though I have to admit I don't make my own taco seasonings.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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My mint has got past the point where it tastes lovely. It's in flower and it's bitter. I regret this because I like to come out first thing in the morning and break off a few little tips and chew them in a meditative manner as the sun rises. Ah well. I have the dried leaves and next year I'll have the tender young plants again. A friend came by today and gave me a large jar of her lovely dried 'apple mint' from the garden for tea. I'll have to see how it tastes. Maybe tomorrow.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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Hi Lil -- I like to think good English cooking (and good American cooking ... I don't know enough to say about Australian,) is making a comeback. Not in a 'posh' way, but in a return to fresh, farm market ingredients and the use of homegrown herbs from the garden. Like to think that, anyhow.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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Saffron is a lovely and delicate spice. I remember it in all sorts of Mediterranean rice dishes. Have you tried cooking with Red za'atar, a Middle Eastern and Iranian spice mixture that often contains sumac berries? Quite an interesting flavor, used in rice dishes.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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I hope your move, overall, was an improvement. But how sad to leave such a garden behind. It's not the same to only hold it in memory or try to recreate it elsewhere. I have to grow anything edible in containers on the back porch. Deer. Many many deer. So I contented myself this summer with a half dozen tomato plants, mint, and a bunch of salad greens. Next year there will be more herbs for me. I'm already planning. But I will wish the most delightful herbs for you, next year, somehow, in your new 'digs'.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Spicing Up the Regency at Word Wenches
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