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20 May: Wednesday

Bologna, Italy: Once again, we traveled to Italy this evening. Not on purpose. Just to calm-down the crazy amount of food in our freezer. Honestly, a toothpick will not fit in our freezer.

My Driver was up with the chickens today to play golf with the men’s group in this resort... probably every golfer remaining in our nearly-deserted RV park. Every golfer takes their own cart. Everyone wears a mask. Hand sanitizer is used. There is a cover over the cup/hole, so no one has to touch/remove the flag stick, nor touch another player’s golf ball. Dave came home $10 richer than when he left, so that is always a good thing.

Dave and I spent quite a bit of time this afternoon going-over houses we are interesting in purchasing. Making notes. Coordinating with our agent. Will we ever be able to actually see these homes? So many houses have been removed from the market due to the pandemic, but we are also noticing a few serious price reductions.

I spent the morning preparing a beef and béchamel lasagna. This seems so easy, but shallots/garlic are chopped and sautéed in olive oil, before ground beef (from the freezer - thank you, Colleen!) is added, along with herbs and cooked through - and drained.

The sauce was made from a 1/3 jar of Rao’s marinara sauce (again, from the freezer), plus two way-over-ripe tomatoes (whirled in the mini-chopper), and a splash of white wine left-over from several nights ago.

Then, in my spare time, I made a teeny bit of béchamel. The whole casserole was then easy to assemble, as I used no-bake lasagna noodles and placed them in an oiled bread/loaf pan. The no-bake pasta is the perfect shape for this pan, and a cook can stack and stack the layers until it reaches the top of the pan. Pasta sheet, red sauce, sautéed beef, béchamel - on repeat. Red sauce and shredded mozzarella as the topping. (Parmesan would also work.) Quite fun and easy. The only cheese in this lasagna was sprinkled on top.

Since we were going to “Italy” tonight, I made a very Italy-friendly appetizer plate for our cocktails:

Baguette with goat cheese, topped with a mixture of minced dried figs, thyme (from our garden), walnuts and a splash fig-balsamic vinegar. Marcona almonds, pickled asparagus spears, artichoke hearts, tomatoes and olives. Our cocktail forks made a rare appearance.

The view down the canal. Joshua Tree National Park (the mountains at the end of this view) re-opened this weekend.

Some yellow flowers are still hanging-in-there on our lot

There is no rosemary in this lasagna. I only placed this sprig from our garden because... well... you know... MUST GARNISH.

Maybe a bit of work for me today, but it isn’t like I am doing anything else. The lasagna was well-received. (Vegan meal tomorrow night!) I served the lasagna with Caesar salad (with home made, anchovy-rich, dressing) and a side of 2019 World Athletics Championships from Doha (from our DVR). GO USA!

Until my next update, I remain, your baked correspondent.

5 replies on “20 May: Wednesday”

  1. Long time reader, first time comment…Wondering if you had considered looking for homes up in the Yucca Valley/Joshua Tree/Twentynine Palms area? or is it just too far from “civilization”?

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