I got my oil press. It’s a Piteba. The thing is built like a tank. I finished reading the directions and, like most totally unfamiliar things, they look more intimidating than they probably are. Still, I think I’ll hook up with my friends who also got one to try it together the first time or two. The next step will be to see what’s available locally to press for oil. Nuts and sunflowers for sure but I’ll bet other kinds of seeds will work. I will be happy to keep myself in really fresh oil for dressing salads and bread baking and the bit of frying I don’t use lard for.

On our trip to the thrift store, Karen picked up an out-of-print called Pizza (foccacia, panini, quiche and more) from Fireside books. I make a pizza from the dough recipes and liked it a lot. It called for adding a bit of mashed potato to a traditional raised dough. I topped with some canned sauce, fresh mozzarella, fresh spinach and rehydrated mushrooms. It was really good. I want to try a white pizza with shrimp next.

Pizza is one of those infinitely adaptable foods. A simple dough can be sweet, savory, dressed up with exotic toppings or taken to its most simple with a basic tomato and basil topping.

We got our first spring plants in the greenhouse yesterday. I put in spinach, lettuces and tat soi. The Asian greens do very well in our climate and give us crunchy goodness when all else succumbs to the cold. I put up a jar of beans to sprout today. It’s the other way to ensure that i can eat something good and fresh when the snow is still flying. A friend of mine went to the market yesterday and found a sign apologizing for the high price and poor quality of the produce. I’m mighty glad for my sprouts.