May 31, 2010

Memorial Day 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — Nick @ 12:19 pm
George Theodorakis gravestone June Theodorakis gravestone

May their memory be eternal! I miss you, Mom and Dad.

May 15, 2010

A walk in the park

Filed under: nature,Uncategorized — Nick @ 10:30 pm

This post is also a little late, but I had some pictures on a digital camera I needed to download (see previous post).

I went for a walk in a local park not too far from my house (Heritage Park in Fishers, IN). I usually look around at the scenery when I go, and sometimes I think, “I wish I had a camera with me.” This time I actually took one, so here a few pictures that I thought were ok.

These (see image to the right; clicking on it will also load a larger version) were some mushrooms that were growing in the mulch alongside a path on the way. I’m not sure what kind they are. The one in the foreground is about three inches tall. There were others that I took pictures of, but they didn’t come out as good.

Along the path deeper in the wooded part of the park were some very large fungus (about the size of dinner plates) growing atop a fallen tree (see image at left). They had actually been there for a couple of weeks, and I meant to take a picture earlier. By now they are partially obscured by the vegetation growing nearby, but I was able to get some shots by crowding in close and sweeping some of the brush aside.

I also snapped some pictures of some vegetation patterns that I thought looked interesting:

Heritage Park in Fishers, IN Heritage Park in Fishers, IN Heritage Park in Fishers, IN

The park abuts the White River, which flows through Indianapolis before making its way downstate before emptying into the Wabash River at the Indiana-Illinois border.

Heritage Park in Fishers, IN Heritage Park in Fishers, IN

May 13, 2010

Easter dinner 2010

Filed under: food — Nick @ 12:11 am

I realize this post is over a month late, but I finally downloaded the pictures off the digital camera (the card reader I usually use doesn’t seem to be working and I had to find a different way). Anyway, back in April I made my usual too-much-food Paschal dinner. Since it was just us this year, we were eating leftovers for awhile (we did freeze some).

We started with an appetizer plate to keep us fed while I finished cooking dinner. I put together a plate with some red-dyed boiled eggs (a traditional Greek Easter item), prosciutto, salami, provolone, and few other cheeses: Bulgarian feta, Brie (a favorite of one of my daughter’s), and some kashkaval (a yellow sheep’s milk cheese). A couple of different kinds of olives (Kalamata and feta-stuffed Haldiki) rounded out the plate. I actually made too many eggs this year. I made an extra dozen because I meant to take some to church to pass out, but forgot to bring them.

Easter dinner: lamb with orzo, pastitsio, and other food

Easter dinner. Clockwise from top: carrots and onions (cooked with the lamb), stewed green beans, pastitsio, lamb gravy, lamb, spanakopita, roasted potatoes. Orzo is in the middle.

I spent about two days making dinner. I made the pastitisio and dyed the eggs the day before. I started cooking the rest of the dinner on Sunday (getting up a little late because our Paschal Church service is around midnight): roast leg of lamb with orzo, spanakopita, roasted potatoes, and stewed green beans. Afterward, I realized I forgot to make a salad, but hey, I guess I didn’t want to overdo it.

I “cheated” a little bit on the spanakopita. I used crumbled domestic cow’s milk feta, but I did save the imported sheep’s milk feta for the appetizer. However, I do like to use good phyllo dough, which makes it so much easier. I buy phyllo from Khoury’s Mediterranean Island in Broad Ripple in Indianapolis. I don’t where they get it from, but it seems that it is never frozen, and every sheet is perfect—not sticky, not crumbly, and not torn. If you like to cook with phyllo, I recommend finding a good source, because ordinary frozen grocery-store phyllo can be a pain to use.

We had enough leftovers to give away some to the neighbors later. We also froze some of the pastitsio and spanakopita for later (they freeze ok, but the spanakopita gets a little soggy), but it did take about a week to finish off the lamb and other food we did not freeze.

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