The Daughter of Time
It’s the end of the year and farming is boring right now. Just how I like it. The days are repeats of the routine chores, cutting firewood and hauling hay. Which means no one is sick, the tree that fell in the last high wind didn’t make a hole in the fence big enough for everyone to walk through, we’re not scrambling to find enough hay because our fields didn’t produce enough. Wonderfully boring.
In a couple of months things will start to pick up again, it’ll be time to frost seed the field we’re planning on fencing as soon as the frost is out of the ground and we can dig post holes. For some reason when you buy a fence post the post hole is sold separately. Mud will be back and I’ll be hauling rocks to fill ruts and potholes. I think the last glacier stopped by long enough to drop every rock in a 5 county area on our doorstep. Rocks are useful only when they happen to be where you want them.
So to fill time and have a reason to stick close to the woodstove I’m doing a lot of reading. And right now it’s a very British batch of books I’m getting though. For Christmas I unwrapped “The Ravenmaster” by Christopher Skaife. Once Tom is done reading it I want to rewatch “Secrets of the Tower” and see what I missed the first time.
And I’m on the last book I picked up at the Quincy library book sale. A treasure trove of a series in matching bindings. Mysteries, every one of them. Classics like The Maltese Falcon, spy novels written during WWII when everyone worried about such things and with reason. And the last book in the series, The Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey. I’ve never heard of Ms. Tey before, the book was published in 1951, well before I was born but if her other books are as good as this one then I’m her latest fan. I might like it so much because I’m a huge history buff, Kyle learned history reenacting the French and Indian War and I have shelves of history books. Or maybe because it’s based on a true mystery.
I’ve read all or most of Philippa Gregory so I have a fighting chance at keeping everyone straight, it doesn’t help that they only had 3 first names for ladies and every king was a Henry or Edward, and there were dozens of Woodville in-laws, all married to people with the same names as everyone else’s spouse. So knowing the players a bit lets me concentrate on the main storyline; did Richard kill the princes in the tower? There are people who belong to a society who firmly believe that Richard is totally innocent of any of the infamy charged to him by Shakespeare and pretty much everyone else who’s written about him. Could they be right?
So the rest of the winter will have me ordering books from the library to see if Josephine has a valid theory on what happened to the princes or if history has proven her wrong. And I’ll be just as swept up in the search as her main character, Grant.
And while I’m keeping close to the woodstove I’m making a pot of soup from the turkey carcass left from Thanksgiving.
1 turkey carcass
4-6 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 onion, peeled and chopped
2 tablespoons parsley
1 teaspoon sage
½ teaspoon thyme
Noodles, rice, quinoa
Simmer turkey in your largest stockpot with enough water to cover most of the bird. Simmer several hours until meat is falling off the bones, strain broth through colander to find and remove bones from meat. Add chopped carrots, onion and spices and return to heat.
Add a cup of rice and/or quinoa (I used a blend of rices and quinoa) or half a bag of egg noodles.
Rice will take 20 to 30 minutes to cook at a simmer, for noodles you want the soup boiling before you drop the noodles in and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.