Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.

21.7.09

But what was the date on the moon?

Two days of winter warmth. A north-easterly off the alps in the morning, picking up some warmth after midday; perhaps turning slightly westerly and dragging in some heat off the flat floor of 10 million acres of Mallee desert.

Too early to be thinking about spring. But buds are forming on the trees. The pruned roses are starting to shoot. And this evening, did I notice the light seemed to hesitate before failing?

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The papers - all media - have been full of moon landing nostalgia, dutifully pointing out that it was 21 July 1969 here and 20 July 1969 elsewhere, and even releasing 'previously unreleased footage', like new Beatles songs or an extra reel of The Godfather. I don't remember this degree of coverage on the tenth, twentieth or thirtieth anniversaries. Maybe they're just warming up for the half-century.

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Rice again. This time, another winter favourite that is more a lunch thing; indeed, a breakfast thing in Asia.

Congee with fish.

Bring to boil two cup of rice in sixteen cups of water. Simmer low until rice breaks down. Stir frequently. When almost done, add fine strips of ginger; then slices of white-fleshed fish. Cook until fish is done, fibve minutes should do it.

Scatter chopped spring onions (or dried fried onions) and a dash of sesame oil to serve. And hot chilli, ground or sauce, in a bowl on the side, along with a cruet of soy or tamari.

What I love about this dish is its soothing warmth and the heat of the chilli and the salt of the soy against the blandness of the rice. A true winter warmer.

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All right. I'll tell you. I was 12, in a classroom on the ground floor of a two-storey red brick school building watching the telecast on an ancient HMV black and white television. The astronaut took forever to step down onto the moon, and then he finally did, and we all cheered and got to go outside and play.

3 comments:

jo said...

I was five and staying with me Mom's Mum. i remember her trying to convey the gravity (no pun intended) of the situation and to get me to watch. In those days they watched teli in the living room while dining on TV trays, I ate in the kitchen watching the teli kitty corner. I still remember it so well. i also feel like that same summer was my first solar eclipse, but perhaps that was another year.
I must try congee, I love mush of any kind and that sounds yummy.

Barbara said...

Back in 1994 they made a huge deal about the 25th anniversary of Woodstock over here and only occasionally mentioned the moon landing. This year, thankfully, I haven't heard anything about Woodstock.

My Mom tells me I watched the moon landing, too. I was 10 days away from my first birthday and she was up with me at night (I grew up in Europe), feeding me and we watched it together. Pretty cool, I think.

kitchen hand said...

Whatever happened to TV trays, Jo?

Barbara, that is cool, watching man land on the moon at less than a year old. An early version of Lunar Jim.