Thursday, December 18, 2008

You See Garbage

I see little egg clothes.
This germy-looking dish holds our kitchen scraps. Once or twice a day we trot out the carrot peelings, onion skins, unloved lettuce leaves, and dump them on the compost pile (and boy, did that turn out to be an easy undertaking — just a pile and a pitchfork, no fancy yuppie tower).
The garbage never gets a chance to stink up the house, because it's all vegetable matter.
Except for the eggshells. I understand the eggshells are good for soil, so we always toss those in, too. But never anchovies or pigs' feet. That would be stinky.
OK, not a post about composting. Apologies.
This is a post about eggs and egg salad.
I don't know if you can tell from the photo, but the three eggs were sliced through their centers, while still in the shell. Whacked, actually. Then the hard-cooked contents were simply twirled out with a spoon. I learned this trick from Moonbear, who raises chickens and always has eggs so fresh, they are unpeelable. You know how the shell sticks to a too-fresh egg? And such frustration, picking off all those shards. This is easier. Whack and twirl.
Moving on, then. Egg salad. We bought some olives at the farmers market, a mix of green and slightly ripey-er. The slightly ripey-er ones had been pitted, so that makes things easy at the chopping board. (A total wing-it recipe, but it just seemed nice to me.) I chopped up a few ripey olives and stirred them into the chopped eggs, with a gloop of mayonnaise. And that's IT. Not even salt and pepper (the mayonnaise and olives are salty enough).
It was really good, on little slices of wheat levain bread. The stellar quality of the ingredients (killer eggs, local olives and awesome Best Foods) added up to a combination I'd be happy to sneak into César and see if anybody swooned.
Cranky watched me mixing up this (unphoto-able) mess, and said, "Aren't you going to taste it?"
"It'll taste good," I answered.
"Sheesh, you compose like the deaf Beethoven!"


dancingmorganmouse said...

We smash up our eggshells because we found that when it came time to dig in our compost, the unsmashed eggshells were the only bits that hadn't turned into lovely black earth food.

The Spiteful Chef said...

At the risk of sounding like Ralph Wiggum saying "I ate my paste," I felt like I should tell you that I once had a worm farm. An insulated box with a hinged lid that I dumped my kitchen waste into, and let worms make it into poop, which then made nutrients for more food.

cookiecrumb said...

Morgan: Cranky gets all smashy with the butt side of the axe (it's out there for zinging zucchini vines on the pile) on those eggshells. He loves it. But they'll never turn black.

Spitey: You don't still have a worm farm? I guess they'd turn into worm jerky in San Antonio. I admire you. We can actually buy worm juice in California. In recycled soda bottles.
Awesome wedding shoes!!! Spitey = Bridey.

Kailyn said...

Oh no you didn't invoke the name of all that is holy to me. Of course, Peet's is part of the trinity but should the third be Poulet or Gregoire's? I must go ponder this.

Oh, and please tell Cranky that my last batch of boiled eggs came out perfect.

peter said...

I actually got on of those yuppie towers, but I only use it in winter when it's just too hard to slog out to the garden all the time (or if there's a lot of snow, shovel out the gate to even get in.)

And composing "deaf" is a great way to fly.

dancingmorganmouse said...

A compost heap IS a worm farm, ever need a worm, go look in the heap.

Alecto said...

Yes, yes, the compost heap is indeed a worm farm. When we turn the heap (and I really do need a pitch fork, the shovel doesn't quite cut it) they're everywhere!

And also, having had fresh eggs from the back yard since late August I am delighted to find a way NOT to have to pick off all that shell.

el said...

Dang: you had me all hot and bothered about reading a composting post! *Sigh* Thank Moonbear, though, for the tip: I always have crumbly boiled eggs and accept it as a fact of fresh-eggy life.

[Incidentally, I do throw piggy bits etc. into my compost, but then, I have country-sized heaps out here that can take it all. Size does matter. But that's a subject for another day, I suppose.]

EB said...

"Whack n' Twirl" "Whack n' Twirl"... it's my new mantra.

cookiecrumb said...

Kailyn: You are most definitely the Egg Lady. Cranky cooked this batch, as usual. (I do the poaching around here, though.)

Peter: I'm sure the yuppie tower is handy. But I was under the dumb impression you *had* to have one in order to compost. The we just started dumping stuff on the ground, and it worked.

Morgan: Oh yeah, there's worms in there, lots! But I think the other kind of worm composting, where you collect their poo, is done with a different kind of worm.

Alecto: There are so many worms, I kinda don't even feel bad jabbing them with the pitchfork. :(
You will never forget this egg trick!

El: I'm a composting white belt; I take instruction from masters such as yourself.
If I tossed meat on the pile, we'd get skunks, cats and raccoons.
The egg tip... who dreams this stuff up? And more maddeningly, why didn't we?

EB: Now I'm going to experiment with whacking the eggs lengthwise, to see if I can get proper specimens for deviled eggs.

dancingmorganmouse said...

Cookie, I had one of those worm farms once, the worms kept running away!

cookiecrumb said...

Morgan: It's so sad that your worms hated you.

cook eat FRET said...

i love
but love
egg salad

i think i'm making some very soon
with olives

Passionate Eater said...

When I lived on a 1 acre parcel of property, one of my favorite things to do was to collect all of the potato peels and egg shells from the day, and bury them in misc. places in the yard. Unfortunately, now that I live in an apt, I just put all of that nutritious composting material in the green "compost" bin. But there is something empowering about being able to do it yourself.

cookiecrumb said...

ceF: I am going on record, recommending this. Better than capers. But capers would be awesome too.

PE: It's OK to give your garbage to the city. It's recycling. Someday you will have your own land again.
(Come back!)

Moonbear said...

No wonder my ears were burning! I too got kind of excited when I thought the post was about compost. (Hot and steamy subject matter.)
If you want some christmas fun, give your pup a jujube. It'll keep him happy for at least 30 minutes, while you study the ingredients list on the package. It will be too late to extract the candy, however. Pretend Carnauba wax is a food group.