GYPSY STEW AND THE PERFECT DAY
There is an old saying, “Any day I wake up is a good day.” I totally disagree with that sentiment. There has been many a day that I woke up that I just wished that I would have stayed in bed and slept until the next day. Fortunately however, yesterday was not one of those days. Yesterday was a “Perfect Day.” What constitutes a “Perfect Day”, you may ask?! A “Perfect Day” is a day filled with those things you enjoy doing the most.
For me there are three things in my top ten list of “Things I Enjoy Doing The Most” that I was able to do yesterday;
- Ride my motorcycle
For those of you that are nosey and are wondering what the other seven “Things I Enjoy Doing The Most” in my top ten list are (and not particularly in this order);
- Spending time with family and friends
- Volunteering To Help Worthy Causes
- Yard work and gardening
- Hiking through the woods
- Exploring new places off the beaten path
- Visiting Landmarks, Zoo’s and Museums
- Watching a great show whether it be movie, TV, concert, live or circus
“But Gypsy”, you may say, “You didn’t mention tattooing.” That’s correct, I didn’t and I also did not mention building and updating websites. Both activities, though I greatly enjoy doing them, are my job, not my life. The top ten things I listed keep me a happy and well rounded person. Tattooing and Websites keep me fed.
I started out the day as I always do, drinking my morning cup of Java and answering emails. I then went for a cruise on my scooter and ran some errands all while enjoying the beautiful day we had been given. I then returned to the house and started a batch of “Gypsy Stew”.
Here’s the thing to remember, open air and the feel of the wind in your face and the road beneath your wheels wets your appetite making you hungry for all that life has to offer. That includes good food, why do you think there are so many fat
bikers, me included?! So I came home pulled out the crock pot and went to work;
¼ cup Worchester Sauce
2 well rounded tablespoons chopped Garlic
1 cup white flour
1 tablespoon Seasoning Salt
1 tablespoon Pepper
1 tablespoon Garlic salt
1 table spoon Cumin
2 packages of Lipton Beefy Onion soup mix
¼ cup of cooking oil
2 pounds beef stew meat
4 Large stalks of celery
4 large russet potatoes
1 16 oz bag baby carrots
1 large onion
1 16 oz bag frozen green beans or frozen sweet peas
- Combine Worchester Sauce and cooking oil into a large skillet.
- In a 1 quart zip lock bag combine flour, seasoning salt, garlic salt, pepper and cumin. Shake well to mix.
- Place ¼ of stew meat into the bag and shake well. Place coated pieces into the skillet that contains the oil and Worchester sauce. Repeat until all the meat has been coated.
- Turn the burner under the skillet onto medium heat. Brown the meat stirring frequently.
- Rinse and cut each Potato into 12 pieces each. First cut the potato in half then section each half by 6. Do not peel the potatoes.
- Rinse the baby carrots. Do not cut them up, leave them whole.
Gypsy Stew and Homemade Sourdough Bread
- Rinse and cut up the celery. Do not chop, cut into half moons.
- Rinse, peel and chop up the yellow onion.
- Combine the browned meat, vegetables, soup mix, chopped garlic and eight cups of water into a large crock pot. No not add the peas or green beans yet.
- Cook on high for 4 hours. Remove the lid after 2 hours and stir once.
- At 4 hours stir the stew again and add the green beans or peas, whichever you decide to use (I prefer it with green beans, makes it heartier). Stir in the green beans and recover.
- Cook on high one more hour and then shut off the crock pot.
- Leave to cool, covered for one more hour.
- Stir and serve with cornbread (Jiffy mix is by far the best) and bring your appetite. Total prep time is 30 minutes and total cooking time is 6 hours. It is well worth the preparation and wait time. It will feed an Army at one setting or just yourself for several days.
After getting the stew started I went to my computer and worked on updating my websites and answered some more emails. Before long however I was in the “Bloody Vardo” (our art studio) starting a new painting.
Right outside the “Bloody Vardo” windows is a very large Lilac bush. Lilacs and Iris’s are my favorite flowers and the breeze was carrying the scent of lilacs through the window. I generally do not paint flowers. Oh I might add a flower here or there for effect within a painting but flowers is not my thing, I leave those to my wife Debbie who loves to paint flowers. But I was inspired so I have started a painting whose main subject is flowers. It is entitled, “The Scent of Lilacs”; Hmmmm, wonder where I got the idea for the painting‘s title. I will share the painting here as soon as I complete it.
Later I did my radio show, as I always do each Monday evening at 6:00. It was a good show and we had a lot of listeners. Afterwards I partook of some of my “Gypsy Stew” and watched my favorite television show, 24.
If you do not watch 24 you are missing one of the best hours on television.
I ended the evening by working on “The Scent of Lilacs” a little bit more before calling it a day. All in all it was a “Perfect Day” and I hope you don’t mind that I shared it with you!