Spring Seems Very Far Away


So begins the month of Farch, the longest month of the year. And, this being a leap year, Farch is 60 days long. We are a day away from Groundhog Day, and Wiarton Willie's chance to shine. Here's hoping that Willie doesn't see his shadow tomorrow, although if anybody can guarantee me six more weeks of winter and nothing more, I'll be happy.

The bright and cold winter we've had has been a beautiful, and far less taxing than near-freezing grey rain, but looking out and seeing all of the snow that's piled up still makes me wonder when we'll get to see it all melt. When will we be able to break out the windbreakers? It's times like this that I realize that it's frankly amazing that spring comes at all.

Found cilantro yesterday. It helped that it was the only herb in the display with its roots showing, and that it was wrapped in a honking big elastic band with the word "CILANTRO" printed on it. And, yes, it does have a distinctive smell.

I'm not sure if I can explain just why it is that Erin and I have made New Scandinavian Cooking a part of our Saturday ritual. Typically, I cook up a late breakfast, Erin brews coffee, and we retire to the living room to turn on PBS (WNED Buffalo) and watch. The show airs at noon every Saturday (barring pledge breaks or specials) and we always enjoy it.

Maybe there's some camp value involved. One doesn't normally think of Scandinavia having a cuisine that can justify such a show the way Chinese, French or Italian cuisine do. My sister-in-law :Wendy: married into a Norweigan family and spent her honeymoon in Norway. She came back thoroughly sick of fish. And the number of times youthful host Andreas Viestad uses Dill has led us to incorporate it into a drinking game that we play while watching. Whenever Dill is mentioned as part of a recipie, take a drink. Okay, we're drinking coffee at the time, but it's no less fun.

The show is also part travelogue, with Andreas presenting the beautiful scenery and local colour of whatever part of Norway (thus far, I haven't seen him venture into Sweden or Finland) he happens to be presenting from. There's no denying that Norway is a beautiful country. And, camp value again, once he's done with the travelogue, the camera speeds up as he sets up his stove and kitchen counter -- outside -- and proceeds to cook up his latest creation. The outdoor elements are always interesting, particularly when he visited Svalbard in early spring (and his borscht froze to his blender) or tried to cook goat cheese while beating off the noses of curious goats.

But camp value and striking scenery aside, Scandinavia has a cuisine, and Andreas knows how to cook it. The dishes he serves up are mouth-wateringly good, and that seems an appropriate image to share your breakfast with.

You know, I just realized that Apple, makers if the iMac, the iPod and the people behind iTunes, will never, ever, be involved with anything to do with legal services.

Think about it.

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