A lot has been going on with the Old Stove since my last post to this blog on June 2. In May, I accepted a great opportunity with Walt Disney Imagineering. Every important decision involves trade-offs. In this case, my new position required that I leave San Francisco and relocate to Orlando, Florida. It was a tough decision for me for I had grown to love San Francisco in the eight years I lived there.
I lived in Orlando before,so I knew what I was getting into in terms of weather, culture, politics and food. A factor in relocating was that my two grown children and their families live in Orlando and it’s a good time to check in on them for a few years. Also, the work opportunity with WDI was compelling.
So with the decision made, things began to move rapidly. On June 3rd the moving van pulled away, leaving my apartment empty. Over the next three days, I took care of loose ends and handed my property over to a realtor to prepare it for sale.
I had an option to ship my car and fly to the East Coast, but opted to drive cross-country over a nine day period to enjoy the I-40 route as it runs along what was Route 66. This presented the opportunity to visit places like the Grand Canyon, which I had never seen, and to swing through the little towns in northeast Arkansas where I spent time in my childhood.
My close friend, Donna, who often appears in this blog, agreed to join me. Armed with 29 CD’s of Shelby Foote’s “The Civil War: A Narrative —Volume 1”, we set out from California. Donna was a great companion and tour guide. She documented our journey on a well-done Facebook page entitled “Backwards on the Mother Road”.
Donna and I had many a great adventure on our cross-country escapade, including indulging in road food of every genre. But the stop at Mark’s Melon Patch —a roadside stand in Georgia —signaled our arrival in the South. Here we picked up delicious fresh Georgia peaches, honey, and green plums for our final push to Florida. We also purchased a large cup of boiled peanuts. Donna had never experienced these and I had not indulged in boiled peanuts for at least a decade.
Peanuts are not nuts, but actually legumes, or beans. Boiled peanuts are made from green un-roasted peanuts which are seasonally available in the South where these are grown. When cooked this way, boiled peanuts taste more like beans than nuts.
I found green peanuts in a local grocery store and made up a batch, or two. The preparation is fairly simple. A recipe for these (with some options) is as follows
- 1 pound green peanuts
- 1/8 cup sea salt
- Optional ingredients include carrots, green peppers, onions, jalapeño peppers, smoked ham and Old Bay seasoning.
- Place peanuts in a large pot with water to cover. Add salt and optional ingredients.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer. Cook for two to four hours, or until done to taste.
- Drain and serve, either hot or cold.