Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Swedish Meatballs and other delights

Sometimes "retro" food tastes so good.  The last time I cooked up a batch of Swedish Meatballs is lost to history, but certainly not within recent memory, like the six years we've been in this house.  With the cooler weather, this dish just seemed right.  I got a good quality ground beef from the butcher shop and ground up 1.5 pork chops in the food processor, because I didn't like the look of the ground pork at the meat counter.  I had the rest of the ingredients except for white bread and heavy cream, but a trip to Shaw's solved that.  Then I forgot to add the cream, but we didn't miss it.  Making a huge tray of one ounce meatballs was tedious, as was the browning of same, and they were so lean that they rendered no fat, and when it came time to make the gravy I had to had butter to the pan.  Still not enough fat, and I fought the lumps battle (successfully), but then the low-salt low-fat beef broth did not thicken and I had to sneak some cornstarch in.  No problemo.

The end result was toothsome and for once I made enough mashed potatoes such that we could ladle on spoons of the savory gravy.  (Diet freaks stop reading now.) Confession:  last night and this morning when I walked by the fridge I reached under the foil and sneaked a meatball.  Plenty left for tonight's dinner, which will be noodles instead of mashed and carrots instead of peas.  Variety, etc.

I am finishing my novel, maybe even this week.  The following will happen:  a huge sense of accomplishment and then a big letdown.  I'll let the manuscript lie fallow for a while, with the distasteful task of cutting a huge number of words to look forward to.  Good words, all.  Well, maybe not all.

Grapeshot will try to do NaNoWriMo  this year, as I don't have involvement in a writer's conference which has sucked up the last eight Novembers.  I want to get an uncensored leg up on my 1928 California novel, Such Stuff as Dreams.  It's going to be hard to write.  I already know that, so maybe a vault into the story without too much thinking about it.  I do have an outline of sorts, which I must get out and add to.  Then I am at least following a story line. 

Very excited about going to Bouchercon in San Francisco next month.  Bouchercon by the Bay.  What a city!  And then a side trip to Reno to find the very final details for In Flight, stuff I may not be able to add or will have to cut!  Grrrr.


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