Inland Northwest, High Desert
Spiders as House Guests
With the cold weather outside, this time of year I always find spiders moving into the house to enjoy the warmth. Although most aren't harmful, I don't like the webs they make and try to remove them. Sprays and bombs don't work particularly well on spiders. They're too elusive. For a chemical to work on a spider, you've got to hit him with it. Better to swat them instead. Personally, I prefer fly swatters. That way I don't have to get so close to the icky things.
This vegetable minestrone soup really warms up the body on a cold winter day. The flavor is remarkably rich, filling, and very Italian.
1 cup of dried, white beans or 1 can of cooked beans
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3 springs parsley, minced
3 large carrots, diced
1 cup finely shredded cabbage
1 cup diced raw potatoes
1 1/2 quarts liquid. I use water with a dollop of turkey stock added for flavor.
1 tablespoon basil
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 bay leaf
1 cup macaroni
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely-ground pepper
1 cup cooked, diced tomatoes (canned are fine)
Add onion, olive oil and garlic to skillet and cook until translucent. In a kettle add parsely, carrots, cabbage, potatoes, water, basil, oregano, and bay leaf. Cover and simmer about 30 minutes, stirring often. Add the beans, macaroni, salt, and tomatoes. Simmer all together about another 15 minutes. Serve with some hot biscuits.