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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Country Cousin

Issue Date: September 23, 2020

Autumn is here!

Autumn officially arrived on Tuesday, Sept. 22, and as it does each year, TIMESLand is getting more breathtakingly beautiful with every passing day. The frosts that dropped in last week weren't of the killing variety, and the weather has been every bit as beautiful as the trees. Snow will be coming all too soon, but in the meantime, aren't we lucky to live here???

COLOR TOURS

Marinette County's new personnel who were hired just a few months ago to promote county parks, economic development and tourism have really hit the ground running. Talking here about Parks Program Assistant Allyson Bickel, Economic Development and Tourism Director Jennifer Short and her Program Assistant Autumn Rockhill.

Working together they have developed a printed Fall Color Tour Guide that directs visitors and residents on some of the most scenic routes in Marinette County for viewing fall colors. The Tour includes the breathtaking area our family calls the "golden cathedral" area on County I (formerly Parkway Road north of County C) that leads eventually to Goodman and McClintock Parks. In this area, golden trees arch over the Rustic Road for a mile or two of beauty that does feel like you're driving through a golden cathedral.

Bickel has put together a Tricks & Treats at Twin Bridge event for campers at Twin Bridge Park over the Oct. 2 through Oct. 4 weekend. She said when the event was announced a few weeks ago only four or five of the 62 campsites at Twin Bridge Park were reserved. Now there are 53 sites reserved, with another 10 days to go.

Events planned for Saturday, Oct. 3 include a campsite decorating contest with judging at noon on Saturday, a pumpkin carving event, with pumpkins donated by Jandt Farms, and Trick or Treating from 3 to 4 p.m. Bickel said campers are encouraged to dress in costume, with masks encouraged. They also are asked to bring their own pumpkin carving tools, and have treats individually packaged. She said procedures will be in place to sanitize areas where campers may gather and the practice of physical distancing from others not in the family group will be encouraged.

MASK ORDER EXTENDED

See where Gov. tony Evers has extended his coronavirus mask order until Nov. 21. Guess he wants everyone to continue anti-social distancing until then too. Wonder, since masks are required in public places at other times,will folks scare everyone on Halloween by going without masks?

At numerous recent meetings have seen charts from the Wisconsin Department of Health showing the chances of coronaviruses exposure broken down into numbers, staring with no masks, going on to the person who feels good wearing the mask, the person with the illness wearing the mask, and then both parties wearing the mask.

Wonder who did the calculations that led to the numbers on the charts? How many people did they interview? Did they consider all the people who reportedly have had the virus with few or no symptoms?

Have seen some pretty silly rules in practice. For example, a student was sent into home quarantine because one person in her immediate class contact area had covid in the family. Her brother, who lives in the same house, was allowed to continue going to school.

DON'T FEED THE BEARS

Reminder: Keep those bird feeders put away until after winter arrives and the bears go to sleep, or you're likely to find that you've invited some big furry guests for dinner. They do love sunflower seeds, but they generally wreck the feeders they get them from.

NO CHANGE

Some things about human nature never change. Found the following comments in a 60-year-old book:

Even when he's alone he's in bad company.

Cash: the poor man's credit card.

Sentimentality: a sentiment we don't share.

Narrow minded: he can look through a keyhole with both eyes.

Sympathy: your pain in my heart.

Description: He walks with a southern drawl.

GROWIN' THINGS

It's time to be cleaning up the garden, not planting it, but if you mulch them well right after the first hard frost, there are a few things you might want to try leaving in the garden for early spring greens. Try planting spinach now, and if it gets big enough before it freezes, eat what you want, then cover the rest. Beets, Swiss Chard, arugula and kale sometimes produce very early greens in spring if the winter isn't too cold and if they're well covered. Parsnips can be kept in the ground over winter and harvested in spring, again if they're well mulched so they don't repeatedly freeze and thaw.

Brussels Sprouts turn sweeter after early frosts, and will keep producing until there is a really hard freeze.

Rhubarb can still be harvested, but it isn't quite as good as in the spring. It won't hurt the plant if you pull off all the stalks now and then chop and freeze them to enjoy a taste of spring when the winter winds blow.

COOKIN' TIME

Garden time is quickly coming to an end, so let's make use of the good stuff while we can, and put away as much as we can for the lean months.

CANNED HOT PEPPERS

Haven't tried these yet, but they sound like the recipe I've been seeking for the pickled peppers grandma used to make. They had a slight sweetness and a bit of oil on top, so when you pulled out the pickled pepper it had a slight coating of oil. She also made them with sliced green peppers and long, thin wedges of banana peppers.

2 c. white vinegar

4 c. water

1 c. sugar

Hot peppers, ripe and freshly picked from garden

Garlic cloves

Salt

Salad oil

Wash peppers and remove tops and seeds. Halve peppers lengthwise. Combine vinegar, water and sugar; bring to a boil and keep boiling. Pack peppers into clean, hot quart jars. To each quart add 1 clove of garlic, 1 teaspoon salad oil. Pour boiling syrup over peppers, leave 1/4 head space. Seal immediately; process for 10 minutes in boiling water bath. Increase the amount of syrup depending on quantity of peppers using the above ratio.

ZUCCHINI CASSEROLE

Still lots of zucchini, and still many good things to do with it. Bake a meat loaf at the same time and serve with thick slices of red, ripe tomatoes for a dinner that's as good to look at as it is good to eat. Ham is also very good with this meatless casserole.

3 large zucchini (cubed with peel on)

1 large onion, peeled and chopped

16 oz. shredded cheese

1 can cream of celery soup

2 eggs (beaten)

2 tablespoons mayonnaise

2 tablespoons sugar

3 cups bread crumbs

1 stick butter, melted

Cook zucchini and onion in enough salted water to cover, just until slightly tender. Drain and add next 5 ingredients and mix well. Pour half into a 15 X 11 X 2 casserole. Stir butter into the bread crumbs and sprinkle half on the first layer of the zucchini mixture. Repeat the layers.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes.

CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI CAKE

This recipe may sound very familiar, and it should. Ran it two weeks ago, but there was an error in the amount of butter. Said 1 1/2 cups, when it should have said 1/2 cup. A Crivitz friend was kind enough to point out the error. So here is the complete, correct recipe. Hope no one was too inconvenienced!

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 3/4 cups white sugar

2 eggs

1/2 cup sour milk (or sour cream )

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups sifted all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves (optional, I like allspice)

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

2 1/2 cups grated zucchini

1/4 cup ground walnuts

1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. To make sour milk, pour a scant half cup of milk, add a tablespoon or so of vinegar, and let sit a few minutes. It will curdle. Cream together butter or margarine, vegetable oil and sugar. Add eggs, sour milk, and vanilla. Blend well. Into a separate bowl, sift the dry ingredients. Add half of the combined dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix well. Add the grated zucchini and mix well. Add the rest of the dry ingredients and mix well again. Spread in a greased floured 9x13 inch pan. Sprinkle walnuts and chocolate chips evenly on top. Bake at 325 degrees for 45 minutes. To really dress this up, add Rum Glaze, then serve with ice cream or whipped topping. Forget supper. Just eat cake. Got vegetables in it anyway.

ZUCCHINI CARROT MUFFINS

Very healthy muffins, great for on the go breakfast or after school snack.

3/4 cup orange juice

1/2 cup butter, melted

2 eggs

1 cup all purpose flour

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup shredded carrots

1 cup) shredded zucchini, shredded

Heat oven to 400F. Combine orange juice, butter and egg in large bowl; mix well. Add all remaining ingredients except carrots and zucchini. Stir just enough to moisten. Gently stir in carrots and zucchini. Spoon evenly into greased 12-cup muffin pan. Bake for 20 to 22 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes; remove from pan.

Thought for the week: Dear God, We know America has turned from You and too often we've ignored Your laws, but please, let it be Thy will to please save this land from those who seek to destroy it, and help the rest of us find the best way to react to those people. Amen.

(This column is written by Shirley Prudhomme of Crivitz. Views expressed are her own and are in no way intended to be an official statement of the opinions of Peshtigo Times editors and publishers. She may be contacted by phone at 715-291-9002 or by e-mail to shirleyprudhommechickadee@yahoo.com.)


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