I call her #6

Nothing beats holiday cookie baking with your neighbour!
Nothing beats holiday cookie baking with your neighbour!

I knew her in her 80s…. she’s now renamed herself Amazing, and I buy that hook, line and sinker.  I also call her #6.

Here we are after the Long Branch Santa Claus Parade, baking Peanut butter chocolate cookies for Christmas. We have to take a break before baking the next batch (cappucino crinkles), while Amazing licks the spoons.   With Georgie, Memphis and Gracie keeping watch. Dec. 6, 2014.

Stan’s treat – Kabul Express

Kabul’s paneer with garlic naan
looking east on Dundas…guy in the middle.. just finished 23 paintings….sheesh!!                        Thanks for lunch Stan!!!
passing the ‘Super Doller’ store

Go Home Lake Mushroom Hunt

Saturday morning I drove up to Go Home Lake, where I was invited to lead a mushroom hunt – the second annual. I’m no pro mycologist, but I can reliably identify a good number of tasty edibles as well as some of the nasty poisonous ones, and I was confident that I could again show a group some of the mushrooms that are good to eat from our forests.

Not long after I arrived, a downpour began which more or less stopped at the appointed start time. Still we had a group of enthusiastic cottagers, eager to learn a little about the mushrooms in their back yard.

Of course, if you’re a dog, the rain means mud-puddles and everybody knows dogs love mud puddles.

Memphis vs muck
Memphis vs muck

We did find a good variety of tasty edible mushrooms, including horn of plenty (trumpets), hedgehogs, chanterelles, puffballs and corals. We found enough that everyone on the hunt left with a good selection of tasty mushrooms.

Horn of Plenty
Horn of Plenty

There was even time for a little fishin’ after the hunt and again today.

Go Home Lake bass
Go Home Lake bass

This morning, Jamie cooked a fantastic bbq breakfast of bacon, omelets and pancakes, served with maple syrup Jamie made this year from local trees.

Of course this cottage life does take a lot out of a guy….

Tuckered Georgie crashes
Tuckered Georgie crashes


Caption this…

IMG_1734Great to see Candy and Stagg tonight! Great dinner at 850 Degrees  here in Long Branch. The photo in this post is Stagg with Tuffy P in our kitchen….making coffee….but other captions are possible.

Rino’s Kitchen with friends

In Windsor Ontario – met up with friends Vin and Basak for a fantastic dinner last night at Rino’s Kitchen. Great company, great meal too. Dinner involved pulled pork served on savoury waffles. Outrageously tasty. Off to Michigan today.

In the Woods

I took Friday off work and headed up to the secret enchanted mushroom forests to do some foraging. I didn’t have high expectations because the rain we received mid-week wasn’t nearly enough to encourage a good flush of tasty edibles. However, wandering around a forest always makes for a good day, with or without lots of mushrooms to pick.

I went to my most reliable chanterelle spot first and found nothing at all. It was a mushroom-free zone of the worst order. I wandered down the trail thinking I should give the whole area at least a quick look before abandoning ship. I almost stepped on the chanterelles in the picture below, as they were on the edge of the trail I was walking.

Look how well hidden they are in the leaves on the floor of the forest. Encouraged by this find, I examined this chunk of forest carefully. I found just 8 chanterelles in total. I also found two bug-eaten examples of hypomyces lactifluorum. Aha, I thought. The lobsters have started. I high-tailed it over to a nearby forest that always has loads of lobsters, but nada. So I drove to another productive lobster spot, a boggy hemlock forest. Again nada. At this spot, I was reminded that there are many inconsiderate idiots roaming this planet. See the photo below:

Who did they think was going to clean up after them?

Off I went to yet another forest. This is one I’ve only recently learned about. However, today there were no mushrooms around. It was a beautiful forest to walk through though.

Later on Friday, our pals Candy and Stagg came over, and also Behzad, another friend we’ve known for many years. We enjoyed some bbq and a couple excellent games of scrabble. It was great to see Candy and Stagg, who have been on an incredible roadtrip and recently arrived in Toronto.

Telephone Call from Istanbul

OK, not from Istanbul…but we did get a telephone call from Louisiana tonight from our pals Anthony and Candy, calling from a campground somewhere outside of New Orleans. How great to hear from them. We’ve been following the progress of their amazing road-trip on Candy’s blog. It seems like only yesterday we were on a road-trip with them. We had met up at the International Accordion Festival in San Antonio Texas and drove across Louisiana to New Orleans, having a great time along the way.


The Party

That was last night, and quite a night it was at S&J’s place. Great company, many friends, fabulous food, good cheer.