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Jenise

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Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jenise » Thu Nov 12, 2020 3:36 pm

My area isn't in as bad a shape as many, but infection rates in my county are up 5-9% since Nov 3 and things are worse all over the country. Last weekend Snohomish County northeast of Seattle had 187 new cases, something like ten times their previous highest number. No doubt, we'll be looking at stricter measures soon.

I've continued my efforts to support local businesses, but it's getting harder to make any exceptions to "Stay Home!" even for take-out--are we helping, we wonder, or just helping put off the inevitable? With the onset of winter in a cold climate, it sure feels like the latter.

Since March, we never really considered ourselves out of quarantine vs. a little less isolated. Over the summer we got a little less strict about how often we sent shopping. Also, we entertained at home outside 4 or 5 times over the summer and got to feeling safe about dining-in at the homes of a few careful friends. About the shopping trips, with everyone under mask we felt safer about frequency even though we continued to practice "if you need one, buy two" to reduce the chances that perishables would be the only things we had to go out for. Still, as compared to March, I felt safe enough to go out for just avocados and lettuce if I ran out. And sometimes we felt safe enough to go to more than one store, where early-on we were fanatical about going to one place only even if we had to compromise quality or selection.

However, even without new local restrictions (yet) we decided just this week to return to a stricter quarantine mindset just like March and laid in a six-month supply of household basics like toilet paper at Costco which we noticed now has a limit of one per customer. Almost every cart had toilet paper in it, also Clorox wipes. The handwriting's on the wall.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Larry Greenly

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Larry Greenly » Thu Nov 12, 2020 4:30 pm

Rates are up here, and I expect some retightening. A lot of Republicons living in another universe are writing to our local rag about how we should open up even though our county cases are over 1,000 and our hospitals are running out of space.

Unfortunately, New Mexico is right next to Texas, which reached over 1,000,000 cases (they do everything Texas-big), and El Paso citizens are really infecting our southeast corner. :x
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Rahsaan » Fri Nov 13, 2020 9:48 am

Not looking forward to a return to the panic shopping and empty shelves of last March. I feel lucky that those were my 'toughest moments' so far, worrying about whether I could get continued access to all my favorite products!

Otherwise, I've kept a pretty regular shopping schedule throughout. The stores all feel pretty safe around here, but that's because mask and social distancing compliance is high in my community. I think it's different elsewhere.

But we haven't had anyone who is not a (masked) worker set foot in our house since March.
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Barb Downunder

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Barb Downunder » Sat Nov 14, 2020 2:17 am

I’m preparing for a visit from my niece as our state is moving cautiously out of a 4 month lock down where the Melbourne metropolitan area in particular very tightly restricted. This was due to a second wave. We have now had 14 “double donut” days. Ie no new cases, no deaths state wide.
Still strict rules re numbers in Restaurants and public gatherings, masks mandatory in public etc.
I’m still wary, but enjoying cook dinner ing for someone else! She’s bringing some seafood, not sure what, so I’m baking bread, made a lemon to tart and now working on some salads, starting with a blood orange mand fennel number.
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Jo Ann Henderson

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jo Ann Henderson » Sat Nov 14, 2020 5:55 am

My sister will be arriving tomorrow from Maryland (near WA DC). She had COVID two months ago. We were all shocked when she announced she had contracted it. Of all of the family members she was the most paranoid and didn't leave her house for 3 months, masked up and sanitized everywhere she went. Although she is cleared by her MD, negative COVID test last week, and symptom free, she is still paranoid and has given us all rules of engagement. We will have a very scaled down Thanksgiving. All family will have specific arrival times, no more than 4 people in the house at the same time. Most meals prepared to go. Have arranged two tables where we will not sit in more than groups of 3. Each person planning to attend has to have had a COVID test in the past week (got mine on Tuesday) with a negative result. We'll see what happens.
"...To undersalt deliberately in the name of dietary chic is to omit from the music of cookery the indispensable bass line over which all tastes and smells form their harmonies." -- Robert Farrar Capon
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Bill Spohn

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Bill Spohn » Sat Nov 14, 2020 5:03 pm

Larry Greenly wrote:Unfortunately, New Mexico is right next to Texas, which reached over 1,000,000 cases (they do everything Texas-big), and El Paso citizens are really infecting our southeast corner. :x


Texans do not like to be told what to do - even if it might save their lives.
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jenise » Sat Nov 14, 2020 5:25 pm

Jo Ann, that's going to be a most-interesting Thanksgiving dinner. So glad your sister recovered. Her situation just proves how easy it is to pick up from an infected person, and with the numbers of infected persons spinning out of control--yikes.

Close friends are heading to Seattle tomorrow to be with their daughter, SIL, 2 yr old grandson and brand new granddaughter. The next day, his parents arrive from Florida. FLORIDA. They will stay at a hotel the first night. Me? I'd require them to stay/isolate at a hotel for a week before I'd let them in. Airlines are touting how clean the planes are, but that's not the problem. It's the fool who's already sick and is flying anyway.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jenise » Sat Nov 14, 2020 5:42 pm

So yesterday I went to Grocery Outlet again. I have mostly ignored the ones that popped up in my area (we now have three between nine and twenty miles away), but went to the newest one last week with my brother that seems to be a bit more tidy with more interesting items than I remember seeing before. For instance, hyper-local organic potatoes--my county and the one next door. Since each store is independently owned and able to choose their own stuff vs. being stuck with the giant supply lines of a Kroger or even a Trader Joe's, the chances of finding a gold nugget is much higher than normal. Yesterday I found Italian tagliatelle studded with black truffles. Hadn't been there a week ago. But unfortunately the Progresso chicken broth I went back for another case of was gone--and probably won't be back. There one week, gone the next. Nothing seems to be a stationery product.

So there's the downside. But I'm okay with it--the fun is that there's always something new to see. Like Heinz apple cider vinegar--with labels in Norwegian. OOPS, wrong boat! But how fun, and only 50 cents a bottle.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Larry Greenly

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Larry Greenly » Sat Nov 14, 2020 5:46 pm

Jenise wrote:Jo Ann, that's going to be a most-interesting Thanksgiving dinner. So glad your sister recovered. Her situation just proves how easy it is to pick up from an infected person, and with the numbers of infected persons spinning out of control--yikes.

Close friends are heading to Seattle tomorrow to be with their daughter, SIL, 2 yr old grandson and brand new granddaughter. The next day, his parents arrive from Florida. FLORIDA. They will stay at a hotel the first night. Me? I'd require them to stay/isolate at a hotel for a week before I'd let them in. Airlines are touting how clean the planes are, but that's not the problem. It's the fool who's already sick and is flying anyway.


The planes themselves could be hospital sterile, but it's getting there and mingling with crowds of people in the terminal. My wife did not go to the hospital or funeral of her younger brother in Pennsylvania a couple of weeks ago. No way are we traveling.
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jenise » Sat Nov 14, 2020 6:00 pm

Larry, precisely. Two friends/acquaintances of my brother's each travelled on 3-4 hour flights to two different events in the past two weeks. Both caught Covid at their destinations, KNEW IT, and flew home anyway to be sick in their own beds. Got to be a million more where those two idiots came from.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Pat G » Sat Nov 14, 2020 6:40 pm

JoAnn, I'm wondering if your sister has any lingering symptoms that impact sense of taste & smell. From what I understand that may be a common side effect of CV19. In any event, hope you have a blessed and safe holiday. And so glad she has recovered.

I went shopping on Thursday & saw no evidence of panic buying. But some stores are limiting purchases of Clorox wipes, sanitizer, toilet paper. I surely saw panic buying in mid-March, but things seem to have been stable for a while.

As a result of increasing cases, our county in CA is moving down to the purple tier, the most restrictive. This is effective today. Some changes:

Restaurants may only operate outdoors
Indoor gyms must close
Indoor museums must close
Maximum occupancy of indoor retail falls from 50% to 25%

Does not impact us much, except will have to see about retail occupancy when out & about. But it is a setback of sorts. Some mental & physical toll. Maybe a glass of wine tonight will help.... :wink:
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jenise » Sat Nov 14, 2020 7:44 pm

Pat G wrote:I went shopping on Thursday & saw no evidence of panic buying. But some stores are limiting purchases of Clorox wipes, sanitizer, toilet paper. I surely saw panic buying in mid-March, but things seem to have been stable for a while.


The limitations naturally prevent some panic buying that might otherwise occur, but as well I am guessing a lot of people are adjusting better simply because they went through it in March, and many of us have continued living as if in lockdown whether there's formally been one or not. The restaurants that have survived are doing okay on take-out and food delivery on a greater scale has become commonplace. Nearly everyone wears a mask now. We've learned how to do this.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Matilda L » Sat Nov 14, 2020 8:09 pm

The Francophile and I are watching the rising case numbers in the US with heavy sadness. We worry for our friends.

As Barb says, Victoria - which was our state meeting the heaviest challenge for many months - is easing up on restrictions. Travel between states is now allowed across most of Australia, but not all. Down here in Adelaide we have been free of community transmission for a long time, but we are still alert to how quickly this damned thing spreads if there is a slip-up.

In our house, food-shopping has returned almost to pre-covid practices, but we have developed such a good relationship with our local fruit & veg shop and the little independent supermarket next to it that I can see us continuing long-term with "big supermarket" visits only every two or three weeks. (And I think delivery orders from the booze shop are now a permanent fixture. They deliver for under five dollars; they do the lifting and carrying. Why not?)

We haven't gone back to our pre-covid level of going out for a meal. It used to be the case we'd eat out maybe twice a week but now it's rare. And we go to trusted places.
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Christina Georgina

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Christina Georgina » Mon Nov 16, 2020 12:02 am

I am a retired physician with a primary residence in Wisconsin. I’ve had my 3rd email requesting return to service. A field hospital is seeing increased patients and my hospital has no ICU beds and hundreds of staff out sick. Were I not a caregiver for my 98 year old mother requiring travel to Pennsylvania ( 10 hour drive, no flying and no pit stops other than gasoline) I would return to service. Staff is often facing less than 7 days supply of PPE.
I have not been to a secondary residence in NYC since January but hope to be able to before 2022.
I am currently in Allegheny Co. PA where the final vote was surprisingly correct and for the last 2 weeks and the foreseeable future will limit grocery shopping to curbside pickups. This is the greatest disappointment for me. I love a leisurely “aisle job” getting ideas for what to cook based on what looks best or new or unusual.
Family has been on notice that they have to arrive only if they have been in quarantine for 14 days prior to arrival. We have no visitors or workmen. After one member had an emergency dental visit they quarantined in a basement apartment.
Before leaving WI 3 weeks ago we would entertain max 4 close friends who are fastidious but became much more cautious masking the entire time except at distanced seating when my community hit NYT #1 for new cases in the country and positivity was 16-17%.
Baking wheat and rye sourdoughs has been a refuge. I hope flour supplies remain good for the next 6 mo.
Mamma Mia !
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Larry Greenly

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Larry Greenly » Mon Nov 16, 2020 3:27 pm

A recipe I'm making called for a can of white navy beans. So for probably the first time in my life I went to a supermarket to buy one. Well, it appears the hoarding syndrome is starting up again: sections of canned goods empty, including white navy beans. Also some fruit bins completely empty. I had to substitute for a can of plain pinto beans. :evil:
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jenise » Tue Nov 17, 2020 8:59 pm

Christina, I never realized you had been a physician. It makes sense though, you're clearly quite scientific and precise, and I've always appreciated that about you. I can't imagine being a medical worker in these conditions, and at the same time I can't imagine being one and not wanting to help. Stay safe.

My state is now in lockdown, which I was expecting. And today I went in for a medical test that was scheduled about a month ago. I agonized all weekend about it and nearly cancelled. But the underlying condition is pretty damned serious, and it's time-sensitive. The realization that a cancellation could well turn out to be a many-month delay though, was unsettling: the Covid situation will get worse before it gets better, and I might too. So it was risky to go, but even more stupid to put it off. I went. Compared to the decisions some people with Covid have to make, though? Compared to your ten hour drives--in winter, no less? Easy.

Tell your precious mom that there's a lady in Washington state who wants her to know how lucky she is to have a daughter like you.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Matilda L

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Matilda L » Tue Nov 17, 2020 10:57 pm

Well, I spoke too soon.
Just a few days ago I wrote "Down here in Adelaide we have been free of community transmission for a long time, but we are still alert to how quickly this damned thing spreads if there is a slip-up." Less than 36 hours later, news broke that there was an outbreak in Adelaide.

As fate would have it, the Francophile and I were away from home, taking a few days' break to go birdwatching. So, after a fairly successful day's birding, when we'd seen pretty well everything there was to see in that location, and in view of the fact that the next day (today) was forecast to be stinking hot, we decided we'd come home early.

We arrived home to learn that the authorities had just announced a six day hard lockdown - everyone except essential services workers to go home and stay home. Looks like we narrowly missed six days confined in a cabin in the caravan park in Pt Augusta.
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Jeff Grossman

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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jeff Grossman » Wed Nov 18, 2020 4:14 am

Christina Georgina wrote:I am a retired physician with a primary residence in Wisconsin. ...

Thanks for the insight, Christina.

I have not been to a secondary residence in NYC since January but hope to be able to before 2022.

Time away from the grind is a good thing but, as a NYC resident, I can tell you that you're not missing much here. Manhattan is suffering without the daily influx of workers: lots of places closed, streets quiet. Residential parts of town, like where I live in Brooklyn, have fared better.

This is the greatest disappointment for me. I love a leisurely “aisle job” getting ideas for what to cook based on what looks best or new or unusual.

Me, too. I'm in tru-blu NY so I can get away with it a little.

Family has been on notice that they have to arrive only if they have been in quarantine for 14 days prior to arrival. We have no visitors or workmen. After one member had an emergency dental visit they quarantined in a basement apartment.
Before leaving WI 3 weeks ago we would entertain max 4 close friends who are fastidious but became much more cautious masking the entire time except at distanced seating when my community hit NYT #1 for new cases in the country and positivity was 16-17%.

Since March 13, we have been visited by one neighbor (for a dinner) and one friend (in extremis). I went to a restaurant on Saturday -- had the patio all to myself because it was chilly -- my first dinner out in 8 months.
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jeff Grossman » Wed Nov 18, 2020 4:25 am

Matilda L wrote:We arrived home to learn that the authorities had just announced a six day hard lockdown - everyone except essential services workers to go home and stay home. Looks like we narrowly missed six days confined in a cabin in the caravan park in Pt Augusta.

Timing is everything.

Here in New York State, they are targeting the lockdowns where they see the infection rate rising. There are about a dozen spots in the state above 3% and they allow only essential business to be open.

In my nabe, we're still low so everything is open but at 25% capacity.
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jenise » Wed Nov 18, 2020 1:24 pm

Dateline Ritzville, Washington, population 1,673: a wedding with 300 nutjobs, I mean guests, on November 7th has already been tied to 40 new Covid cases, and of course the number will go up from there. It's in the part of the state that voted for Trump, of course, so they ignored the state limit of 30 (which is now 0) at gatherings. Just think what the happy couple gets to look back on in the years ahead.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Jeff Grossman » Wed Nov 18, 2020 1:29 pm

Jenise wrote:Dateline Ritzville, Washington, population 1,673: a wedding with 300 nutjobs, I mean guests, on November 7th has already been tied to 40 new Covid cases, and of course the number will go up from there. It's in the part of the state that voted for Trump, of course, so they ignored the state limit of 30 (which is now 0) at gatherings. Just think what the happy couple gets to look back on in the years ahead.


A gift you could not buy in any store! :mrgreen:
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Paul Winalski » Wed Nov 18, 2020 1:48 pm

Jeff Grossman wrote:A gift you could not buy in any store! :mrgreen:


Except one that doesn't practice mask wearing, low occupancy limits, and social distancing.

-Paul W.
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Paul Winalski » Wed Nov 18, 2020 1:49 pm

Events like that wedding party must be a big concern for GOP long-term strategists. What are they going to do when COVID-19 has killed off a significant part of the Trump constituency?

-Paul W.
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Re: Food musings, Winter Covid edition

by Paul Winalski » Wed Nov 18, 2020 1:52 pm

Jenise wrote:Airlines are touting how clean the planes are, but that's not the problem. It's the fool who's already sick and is flying anyway.


A long flight in a big airliner has to be the riskiest venue there is. You're jammed way too close to other people and you're re-breathing the same air over and over.

-Paul W.
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