chicken sausage, pasta, and spinach skillet

I was looking for a simple weeknight meal that would make use of the chicken Andouille sausage I had in the fridge. I found this recipe, which called for broccoli rabe and penne pasta.

pasta and sausageThat’s not exactly what I did. Broccoli rabe is hard to find in these parts and although I could have used regular broccoli I had spinach in the freezer and so used that instead. I had penne pasta in the pantry, which the recipe specified, but penne is boring and I had it at lunch that day anyway. I used rotini which is more fun.

The recipe said to use Romano cheese, which I did. But I put it on the table in the rotary grater so we could add it on top of the sausage, rotini, and spinach mixture after it was served.

It was a really decent weeknight meal.

revising our liturgy

The Episcopal Church concluded its 79th General Convention last week and completed some marvelous work.

General Convention 2018One issue of interest to me was the revision of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. The House of Deputies proposed a specific plan to revise the prayer book, with a new edition to be released in 2030. (Yikes! I don’t want to calculate my age in that year.)

The house of Bishops rewrote the proposal to form a Task Force on Liturgical and Prayer Book Revision (TFLPBR), and states:

quoteResolved, That bishops engage worshiping communities in experimentation and the creation of alternative texts to offer to the wider church, and that each diocese be urged to create a liturgical commission to collect, reflect, teach and share these resources with the TFLPBR; and be it further

Resolved, That the TFLPBR in consultation with the Standing Commission on Structure, Governance, Constitution and Canons is directed to propose to the 80th General Convention revisions to the Constitution and Canons to enable The Episcopal Church to be adaptive in its engagement of future generations of Episcopalians, multiplying, connecting, and disseminating new liturgies for mission, attending to prayer book revision in other provinces of the Anglican Communion…

The resolution states that “That this Convention [will] memorialize the 1979 Book of Common Prayer as a Prayer Book of the church preserving the psalter, liturgies, The Lambeth Quadrilateral, Historic Documents, and Trinitarian Formularies ensuring its continued use…”

Note that the resolution says “a Prayer Book of the church” and not “the Prayer Book of the church.”

The House of Deputies concurred with this resolution by a voice vote. It was a marvelous spirit of cooperation.

Good stuff, all of that.

In a related decision, the convention made all marriage sacraments available to all couples, both same-sex and opposite-sex. I will allow Susan Russell to explain.

Much more was accomplished as well. It was a productive convention.

Sacred Music Friday: Sing Praise to God Who Reigns Above

Arranged by Samuel Metzger, Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church Chancel Choir, Dr. John L. Wilson – Conductor, Samuel Metzger, Organ

making effective use of shelf space

kitchen shelfSometimes I buy appliances that are practical and get a lot of use. That is the case of our toaster/convection/broiler oven which we bought last fall. Other appliances sit there and gather dust. That’s the case with the NuWave oven. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but as I used it I realized that its capabilities were quite limited. I began to look at it more as a novelty appliance than anything else. It was finally relegated to a cabinet in the garage.

That freed up shelf space for our tortilla press, which gets used regularly, as well as for our kitchen calculator and kitchen scale which also get regular use.

That’s a much more effective use of our limited shelf space.

sticking with nostalgia

The options for television viewing these days are overwhelming. On cable we don’t pay for any of the premium movie channels like HBO, Cinemax, and Showtime, but we still have a huge selection. For streaming services we have Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video.

Too many choices.

Netflix logoAdvertising and social media seem to tell me that I really want to watch the new streaming programs such as Glow and Lovers. I’ve tried them. I’m not that impressed.

I prefer the old stuff. I can watch That Seventies Show on Netflix and Family Ties on Amazon Prime.

Those shows are so much more enjoyable to me than the new, seemingly edgy stuff. I hate to think of myself as old-fashioned and stuffy, but gul durn it, that’s what I enjoy.

grilled citrus Ahi tuna

Sprouts was having a sale on Ahi tuna, and since we hadn’t had that fish for a while I bought a steak. Having done that I needed to find a recipe.

citrus Ahi tunaSo, as usual, I pulled out my laptop, fired it up and opened my Living Cookbook database. I found this recipe. It was one of the original recipes that I transferred to Living Cookbook from my previous 3-ring binder recipe collection. I know that because my note “very good” was in the Comments section and not under Reviews.

This recipe called for a baste of orange, lemon, and lime juice plus sugar and garlic, which was to be boiled down. I omitted the sugar. The tuna was to be rubbed with a fennel seed, black pepper, and salt mix. I omitted the salt.

The result was excellent. It was a marvelous medley of flavors. It’s not something you’d want every day, but for the occasional Saturday night dinner it was really nice.


Sometimes Facebook does some nice things. Thinking about my reflections on immigrants and food I was pleased and surprised by this video that Facebook generated. It’s a nice appreciation of a positive set of values around community. (This may take a few seconds to load.)

Sacred Music Friday: Sing Praise to God Who Reigns Above

from my good friends at First-Plymouth Church, Lincoln Nebraska

Left Bank

Left Bank coverLeft Bank: Art, Passion, and the Rebirth of Paris, 1940-50
Agnès Poirier
Henry Holt and Co. (February 13, 2018), 333 pages
Kindle edition $14.99, Amazon hardcover $19.47

Sometimes I read a book review and I know that book is the next book I have to read. I felt that way after reading the review of this book.

I was not disappointed. At the center of the book are the existentialists: Simone de Beauvoir, Jean Paul Sartre, and Albert Camus. Their activities occupy a good portion of the book. But there are a lot of other individuals who show up as well. The refugee from Eastern Europe, Arthur Koestler, plays an important role, as does the American novelist Saul Bellow, who moved to Paris after World War II. The African-American author Richard Wright and his family did the same. They weren’t existentialists, but they interacted with the existentialists and their lives were intertwined.

As the title indicates, the book covers the World War II era and the early postwar years. The author talks about those who stayed during the war, those who left (or like Sartre were sent to concentration camps), and those who arrived after the war. The work of these people had a profound impact on the intellectual life of the United States and Europe in the mid-twentieth century and the story told here is a fascinating one.

Happy Independence Day

From a classic All-American movie…enjoy…