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Fixin' Supper

Talkin' 'bout what to fix for supper. Tonight, tomorrow night....

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Some observations on summer

* I could eat summer food all year long, easy.
* My doctor would roll over and die if I didn't beat him to it.

It doesn't make a lot of sense, does it? In the summer we have all these fresh vegetables. You'd think we would be so much healthier in the summer. And I'll be they are, up North. Where they sit inside all winter, just getting pasty-faced and lumpy, bodies slowly draining of every last vitamin and mineral. It's amazing that some folks aren't found each spring, just sort of the human equivalent of hibernating, due to lack of nutrition and stimulation.

But in the South, we're rarely sun-starved all winter [talk to me again in February when I'm deep in my own personal pity party based on not having seen the sun in 3.2 days], and we have fresh, local food a good eight or nine months of the year. So you can pace yourself. There's more where that came from, whatever "that" is.

Nonetheless, I hit this point sometime in late July or early August every year. And it is this:
I'm completely overdoing it on the whole summer bounty thing. I'm eating tomatoes twice a day. Or more. I'm frying squash two or three times a week. Tonight, I knew I was at the edge because I made onion rings.

Now if you've never made homemade onion rings, I highly recommend them. Mmmm. But I really can't think about them too much right now, because even though I'm only 33, I think just a little more thought about those onion rings could cause a cardiac event.

I realize that I eat much better, in general than folks used to. I don't fry everything I eat. But sometimes, midsummer, it really starts to feel that way. I drift back toward my genetic culinary heritage, and it's not a pretty one, artery-wise. But man, is it delicious.

Homemade Onion Rings
* Vidalia onions [Please do not waste your time if you can't get real Vidalias. There's not just a difference. They aren't even the same vegetable as other onions.]
* Egg
* All-purpose flour
* Salt
* Pepper
* Milk

Put the egg in a medium bowl. Add maybe 1/3-1/2 c. flour. Pour in maybe 1/3-1/2 c. milk. Add about 1/4-1/2 t. salt and at least 1/4 t. pepper. Whisk. You may want a little more milk, but don't let this get runny. It works better if it's on the thick side, like cream soup that's sat in the fridge overnight.

Peel the onion and slice it into about 1/3 inch thick slices. Separate them, but leave a 1-inch or so disk in the middle. Those are tasty.

Heat canola oil in a cast-iron skillet over medium heat until a drop of water pops. Dunk the onion rings well in the batter, then fry. If they're browning fast, turn down the heat. The onions won't get soft if they cook too fast. Flip them once or twice, watching to keep them even on both sides. It will take several batches to get them all. Drain on a plate with paper towels.

That much batter will do 1-2 onions.


At 8:31 PM, Blogger Andrew Langer said...

LC -

Come on over to my blog for that "Corn Fritter" recipe...

Love your blog!

- Andy Langer

At 11:05 AM, Blogger Bill said...

It has been a long, long time since I had a garden, but what i loved about it was coming home and pullling off some okra and within minutes, having it frying nicely. Or say grabbing an eggplant and making eggplant parmigiana or Imam Baildi or fried eggplant or, gosh, about any kind of eggplant.

At 7:03 AM, Blogger Laura Creekmore said...

I've just had fried eggplant once. A friend of mine got some white eggplant from her mom in Alabama [there's always an Alabama connection] and made it for us for lunch one day. It was so delicious. I've always looked for it at farmer's markets but have yet to find it again.

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