Yesterday was a rare day for us. We went up to Memphis to Buster’s Wine & Liquor–the mid-town super market for best wines, beer, and liquors you cannot get anywhere else nearby. R rarely drinks and by rarely, I mean maybe 3 or 4 times a year he will have a Randorita or a shot of sipping tequila. He wanted Fortaleza Anejo–a highly rated sipping tequila. Buster’s had it–the closest place without going to California. I wanted fresh halibut, so I could make Dorothy’s New Vintage Kitchen Baked Grouper with Herbs over Polenta. (I know, halibut is not grouper–I will get to that.)
It has been so long since we were in Memphis we were shocked at all the new construction, road improvements, and kept asking if we were on the right road. We might not be able to get an electrical connection the right size for another 7 months but it doesn’t appear that Memphis is in a slowdown! Perhaps that is related to Mississippi being ranked #50 out of 50 states in almost every thing except poverty, racial disparity, adverse childhood experiences, asthma, food insecurity, unemployment, infant mortality, diabetes, obesity, just to note a few. [Please note: that is not MS bashing; you can find those statistics in almost any source you choose. Just stating the facts here.]
We were back home in time to feed Steffi and Abby their dinner, and I fed the kitties and watered flowers, and sat a few minutes on the front porch (albeit, under the fan!) to enjoy a small serving of the Santa Julia organic chardonnay from Argentina that I had discovered while cuz and I were on the Florida camping trip. Thank you, Buster’s! After all the critters had been fed, I went in to start dinner. Son came over shortly and asked “What are you building here?”
I flashed the printed picture of Dorothy’s baked grouper over polenta and explained (as he said “grouper? What’s that?”) that I was substituting halibut and rice for grouper and polenta per Dorothy’s always generous suggested alternatives. I was uncertain if R or J eat polenta, and I had never had grouper but I know we all like halibut. And as I mentioned to Dorothy, I do not have a fish monger. 😢 I reckon the next best thing is to drive to Germantown to the Fresh Market and visit the fish counter, which I did. Nice as he was, pretty sure that young man at the counter was not a genuine fish monger, but I am willing to be wrong. I do love the awesome selections of fresh organic produce, the meat and fish options, and the bakery there. Well, to be truthful, I love everything about that store including the range of pasta, sauces, condiments, and other items ad infinitum. Back in the early days of living here, we traveled to Memphis once a month to get holistic dog food and always made the final stop at Fresh Market Germantown. It is a small store, but packed with all the items I dearly love to cook, eat, and drink.
Once the fish was in the oven baking, it was just sit back and reflect on the wonderful day R and I had enjoyed, the glorious relishing of seeing and doing something different from the normal routine of the last 2 years, and the pleasure of interacting with live humans who were smiling and talking to us. I mentioned we needed to start doing that again, at least once or twice a month–not necessarily Memphis, but to take a day trip somewhere together to just relax and enjoy time off the hillside.
Thank you again, Dorothy, for a tasty, healthy, amazingly easy entrée that was the perfect ending for a perfect day.