Frost has been coating our roof and backyard lately, the chill is in the air here. I’ve been lucky to be able save the last of our summer harvest to still enjoy as the nights get colder. Our third collection of parsley from our herb garden, wrapped well in paper towels to keep them fresh, were begging to be used this weekend after spending a few weeks in the fridge. I wanted a way to keep the flavour of parsley for the winter in a refreshing way, so I mixed it with citrus to create a parsley lemon pesto. This recipe works well fresh or from the freezer. Now I’ve got a couple of jars to get me through the winter.
Parsley Lemon Pesto
1 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley
1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
1/2 cup bread crumbs (store bought are fine, but the large homemade kind are even better)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons lemon zest
Salt to taste
When I was younger, I distinctly remember the days after Halloween as muted ones. They didn’t have the zest and excitement of the black and orange candy feast of October 31, that was for sure. And truly your stomach takes days to recover from that onslaught of goodies that, though it pains you, you must keep eating. For the record, I always left the Smarties behind.
But it was more than just the candy hangover and life in ordinary clothes that changed the mood. My grandparents, who lived just next door, would light a candle that would stay on for all of November. It sat on the dining room table and you could see it from the hall, the front door, the kitchen while we ate dinner. It became this haunting little light that I don’t think for years I understood properly. They would also gather up flowers and cemetery candles (the type surrounded by tall glass and bearing the picture of Jesus or a saint) and head to the graves of relatives. Unfortunately, with their passing, I understand more about the All Souls Day traditions that fall on November 2 which include attending church and visiting the cemetery to remember the loved ones we’ve lost. Continue reading »
Reminders of Italy and my heritage are all around here in Canada. I have a penchant for vintage items that are a peek into past lives, the way things used to be or a time when life was different. As a writer by trade, I also love paper items, especially with a story written on them.
As I come across them, I’ll share my Italian-related finds here. The first is this aged postcard from Rome, mailed in 1898 to New York. I can’t imagine what travel was like in that time or the cost it would be to travel from New York to Rome for a trip. What I love most is the writing on the front while the back is mostly empty, save for an address.
Here’s what it says:
As today is your birthday we sent this card in place of a letter and shall send a book when we reach London which will be next week some time. We wish you a happy birthday, many, many, happy returns of the day. Your papa came to Haples on Thursday – to Rome today – I shall write to Grandmas in a few days. We are glad you are such a good little girl. With lots of love to you all and kisses for our little Caryl.
How these papers get separated from their owners, or where the name Caryl for a girl came from, is beyond me. But I don’t mind that it makes me daydream of Rome.