Easter is coming up. Seems I just put one holiday to bed to find another one getting up. I miss having children living with me at this time of year, although often I have my grandchildren visit, but I haven’t colored eggs in a while which is my favorite part of it.
I was remembering an Easter weekend when my daughter was in kindergarten. She had a friend over for the weekend and we had plans on Saturday for “the girls” to go to a fashion show and egg hunt. Both little girls had frilly dresses and patent leather “Mary Jane’s” to match. I did their hair, and pulled myself together and we piled in the car. As a treat I’d gotten an Easter dress for myself as well. It had a long airy skirt and was decorated in soft yellow flowers. It made me feel very feminine and girly especially with the two princesses belted in the seat behind me. I resisted the urge to say “fiddle-de-dee”.
As I’ve written about in earlier blogs, I have a book of stories about my insect experiences. Between being chased by bees through several states, having my nose swell up like Karl Malden after being stung by mosquitos on a Massachusetts beach, and being attacked by army ants in Arkansas, it’s just something that’s followed me since I was a kid. They’re as attracted to me as I am not attracted to them it seems.
As usual I was running a bit late. As I got in the car I heard a kind of whirring noise. Late or not, I looked around to make sure I hadn’t let a bee in with me because if he was in, I was definitely getting out, but didn’t see anything. Down the street a construction crew had set up cones on the left side of the street and equipment was moving back and forth chewing at the asphalt. A man with a hard hat and a sign reading “stop” was conducting traffic. I was proceeding slowly when suddenly out from under my skirt flew a huge grasshopper. Now, logically I know that grasshoppers are harmless but when one this size is animatedly bouncing up and down in front of your face who uses logic? Really? Trying to drive with the girls screaming in the back seat and the bug, probably more frightened than I was at this point, careening off the dash-board and landing first on the rim of my sunglasses and then on the top of my head, I veered to the right, drove up over the curve, through a small white picket fence, finally coming to a stop in the center of what had been a lovely bed of roses. The girls bailed out of the back seat like it was on fire and the grasshopper and I followed quickly behind them. I was flailing my skirt around like I was performing some kind of uninhibited tribal dance when the terrified grasshopper broke free and hightailed it across the lawn. I looked around to find eight men in hard hats no longer working just standing and staring in my direction. One man, removing his hat and scratching his head, came to offer his assistance. After insuring that we were unharmed, and surveying the damage, he inquired as to what had happened, Oh-oh.
Shifting slightly in my shoes as the owner’s of the house also approached I had to explain to a group of grown adults that we had been victims of an unfortunate and unprovoked grasshopper attack which was why the scowling man next to me no longer had two of his prize rose bushes standing in a vertical direction beneath his flatened fence. That was embarrassing. Providing my contact information and assuring the owners of the fence and squashed blooms that I would happily pay for repairs as necessary, I gathered the overly excited girls into the car and headed for what was left of my day. In my rear view mirror I could see the men laughing amongst themselves behind me, one shaking his head and I believe mouthing “women”.
The girls once at the fashion show were fountains of information sharing the story with everyone from the waitress to our table mates so by the time I left I was a legend with the garden set. Ah well.
To quote a line from Kung Fu
Caine: “Old man, how is it that you hear the grasshopper at your feet?”
Master Po: “Young man, how is it that you do not?”
There you go. Hope you enjoy this dessert- it’s yummy.
Tropical Fruit Streudel
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups warm water
1/2 cup oil
dash of salt
10 oz. peeled, sliced mangoes
10 oz. peeled, sliced papaya
10 oz. peeled, sliced pineapple
6 oz. peeled, sliced kiwi
4 ripe bananas, peeled and sliced
Juice of 4 limes
2 oz. melted butter
1 cup bread crumbs
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup sugar
Preheat oven to 385 degrees.
Sift flour into large mixing bowl. Add water, oil and a dash of salt. Mix thoroughly for 5 mins. Cover dough with damp cloth and allow to rest for 20 mins.
Mix together mangoes, papaya, pineapple, kiwi, and bananas. Add lime juice and mix well. Mix cinnamon and sugar. Set aside.
On large floured tablecloth covered surface roll dough to 1/8″ thickness. Flour your hands. Lift dough gently and stretch very thin without tearing. Should be approx. 25″ x 30″ after stretching.
Brush dough with melted butter. Sprinkle with bread crumbs. Spread fruit over bread crumbs. Top with pecans, coconut, and cinnamon sugar mixture.
Fold over left and right side of dough about 3″. Lift the tablecloth with both hands and roll streudel to a roulade. There are a lot of video sites if you need help, but it’s not as difficult as it sounds. Serve with rum raisin ice cream, or your favorite.
Carefully move to a buttered baking sheet. Brush top with melted butter. Bake for 25-30 mins.