Sunday, June 23, 2013

Last Week and Next

Last week included a surprise visit from my sister and brother-in-law who were in the area for a doctor's appointment. As usual on Wednesday I went to the church for our sewing group. On Thursday morning I had an interview for a job at our city library, then went to Publix for groceries. Saturday was a birthday party for a friend who was turning 90. Today of course was Sunday School and Church.

This was not a typical week, and that was fine with me. I like a bit of a change occasionally.

The coming week sees Vacation Bible School at the church in the evenings. I have been doing a bit of sewing for one of the craft projects the kids will be working on.  I have a bit more to do, but should be well in time for tomorrow evening.

The interviewer at the Library promised to let me know about the job at the first of the week. If I get the position or not, it will affect what happens the rest of the week. There's no sewing because of VBS. I wonder what else might happen?

Thursday, June 13, 2013

New Favorites

The two best foods that became popular in this area while I was away in Japan are Greek Yogurt and Hummus. Yogurt is quite popular in Japan.  My theory is that after milk was introduced post WWII in the non-fat dry powder variety* and universally disliked, the Japanese later discovered, I know not where or when, that you could ferment milk, add some fruit flavor and get the same nutrition. My Japanese friends confirmed the cultural idea that fermented foods are good for you. Beer, Soy Sauce, Natto, Sake, are all considered to have very healthful properties. 
*friends who lived through the post war period have told me that they figured that the Americans took all the best part out of milk before sending what was left for them to drink.

It seems that rather than making yogurt thicker, in Japan they make it runnier. The standard fruit flavored cups are very soft and the other favorite thing to do with yogurt is to add it to drinks. There are several very popular health drinks available in stores, not to mention the Yakult company. A veritable army of young women dressed in light green uniforms riding light green bikes make home deliveries of various kinds of health drinks made with fermented milk and a specific pro-biotic. Having just looked Yakult up on Google, I find that they have branched out to other countries including the US. 

Here, though, we've gone the other way and have adopted the strained yogurt that we attribute to the Greeks. It is thick and so creamy, even the non-fat kind. For me it was instant love. Several of the popular brands in this area have returned to leaving the fruit on the bottom rather than mixing it with the yogurt. What's not to love?

The other food is hummus, also from the Mediterranean, also with great nutritional value. Today I finally had all the ingredients I needed to make my own. It's really, really easy. Probably about $3 worth of ingredients for two full cups of hummus.  Next time I want to put in chopped Kalamata Olives. Yum.