Author Topic: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable  (Read 32030 times)

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Offline itchychick

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #20 on: Tuesday October 21, 2008, 01:51:02 AM »
Anthro, here is a novice gardener's question for you... how can you tell when seeds are ready for collection?

I think I posted earlier here that I've been growing amaranth in my garden, and now the plants all have seed bearing buds on the tops (they look kind of like the little flowering bit that comes up on basil plants).  The forecast tonight is for the temperature to go down to 2 degrees C, and risk of frost by the weekend.  I'm not sure how or when to harvest the seeds.  I read somewhere that the plants can be hung upside down over paper, and then the seeds collected after they fall out, but I don't know when to do it.  I can't actually see any individual seeds yet, so I'm guessing it's too early. 

Thoughts?

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #21 on: Wednesday October 22, 2008, 06:15:26 AM »
I once got some amaranth aeed, did a little experimental cooking withit and decided not to grow it.  But in your position I would pull it out by the roots, hang it upside down.  Keep the root  s moist in some fashion, and that should allow the plant to finish the seeds.

Have you experimented with the leaves?  Tender or tough?  Taste?  Do you have a favorite use?
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #22 on: Thursday October 23, 2008, 09:01:03 PM »
I don't want anyone to take my reaction to amaranth too seriously.  I have a long standing prejudice against many kinds of beans, particularly pinto, lima, and fava beans.  And frijoles, from my misspent youth.  Had no choice when I didn't have fifteen cents for a bullmeat, avocado and tomato sandwich. 

I wprked very hard to always be able to afford three or more of those sandwiches, and maybe an ear of Mexican maize every day.  Not that I liked the maize, but it beat beans.     
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #23 on: Friday October 24, 2008, 12:37:22 AM »
To be perfectly frank, I don't know for sure that this is what I've been growing.  I only know it for sure by the Greek name.  I was given small seedlings in the early summer. 

The plants I have don't bear fruit (or beans!), and are grown exclusively for their leaves, which are delicious when steamed or boiled and served with olive oil and fresh lemon juice... and a big hunk of bread to mop up the juice....  It tastes somewhat like a cross between spinach and swiss chard, maybe closer to collard greens, but with a finer texture, and it doesn't make your teeth feel furry like spinach can. 

The cooked leaves have a smooth and tender texture.  In Greek (and I think most southern Mediterreanean cooking), greens are widely eaten.  I don't know if you've ever tried dandelion greens, but those are really commonly eaten, and as a kid I used to hate them, as they have a slight bitter taste to them (the bitterness increases with the age of the plant... the small ones are the nicest).  This plant, on the other hand, has no trace of bitterness.  For this reason alone, I'm guessing it's not as nutritious as dandelion or the other bitter greens. (This is not based on scientific knowledge, btw, but conditioning from my formative years!) My grandmother used to actually drink the cooking liquid when she cooked all these plants (and especially dandelion)... 

I always chuckle when I go to the fancy neighbourhood greengrocer and see dandelions sold for $6/bunch!

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #24 on: Friday October 24, 2008, 05:42:52 AM »
No, amaranth is certainly not a bean.  It is a grain.  And it was the grain I was interested in at the time.  This was another plant for which there was little information about the greens and the level of nutritional value of the leafy material.  It comes as a surprise that the leafy material is tender.

All I have done is play around with cooking with the seeds.  I never actually planted any. Neither spinach nor swiss chard, as cooked vegetables, hold any charm for me.  I enjoy spinach leaves raw though.

I do get some dandelions in my yard, but haven't tried the greens.  When Ibreak a stem there is a milky fluid.  That makes me a bit cautious about eating them raw.  It is raw vegetables that hold the greatest attraction for me.

Half the Shmooo I eat is the raw or dried leaves.  Initially, I shredded it coarsely for drying.  Lately, I have been drying the leaves whole, and at the opposite extreme, I have been powdering the leaves.  Each consistancy is good for different cooking purposes.  But, by far, my favorite way to eat it is raw.  Even so, I incorporate it into just about everything I cook as well.
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #25 on: Friday October 24, 2008, 12:48:24 PM »
Come to think of it, I don't think I've ever seen anyone eat raw dandelion.  The stems are never eaten, and ideally the leaves are picked before plant flowers at all.

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #26 on: Sunday October 26, 2008, 01:52:52 AM »
There are several compelling reasons my focus is on a high nutrition density green vegetable which requires no cooking, and which does not require planting or weeding efforts.

I saw a program about Malawi, Africa.  There were industrious and motivated people laboring throughout the day with hand implements.  It certainly had elements of a success story. 

The people had, with fairly minimal and conditional aid, eliminated most of the visible starvation.  But a high amount of  the actual work had to do with the digging, planting, weeding, and even hand watering of maize.  At one point, I saw a woman pulling weeds and throwing them on a fire,  A fire that was doing norhing at all but burning some weeds.  The point of the story appeared to be that the people could help themselves.  But I was not really convinced.  To me it seemed they had had a few years of unusually ideal growing conditions.

Perhaps I misunderstood what was happening when I saw the woman burning weeds to no good effect in an area in which people go out and denude the countryside for fire materials for the cookstove.

And lest we think that this shortsightedness is confined to the abjectly poor in third world countries, think again.  All my life, I have seen refineries which burn off "waste" gases with a huge yellow flame. burning continuously atop a tall standpipe, year in and year out.  Hundreds of them throughout the world, burning all the time.

I can think of no good reason that flame couldn't heat a boiler and spin a turbine to generate the electricity needed to run the refinery and surrounding communities.   

 
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"What all men speak well of, look critically into; what all men condemn examine first before you decide"-- Confucius

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #27 on: Tuesday October 28, 2008, 06:44:28 PM »
Last night we had a 30 degree F freeze.  The Shmooo crop was more than 90% wiped out.  It looks like I will need to get creative to keep on track with my accustomed daily ration until next spring.

 
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #28 on: Thursday October 30, 2008, 09:58:58 PM »
Well Itchy,
In answer to your question over on the thread about losing ones home in this  economic crisis, requesting recipes for Shmooo.

The main way I eat it is raw, right out of the garden.  I eat the leaves, small or large.  When I take the leaves inside for drying, I often slice them cole slaw style and sprinkle some lemon or lime juice on, and perhaps a little cracked pepper.  The fresh leaves are also good on any sandwich which might otherwise use lettuce or cress.

Since you are getting freshly dried leaves, you don't have the same option, but you can still sprinkle the crumbled leaves liberally onto the mustard, ketchup, mayonnaise, butter, or whatever other relish or sauce might go on the sandwich.

I am now eating a lot of the "buds" which, had they been allowed to complete their growth, instead of having been caught in the freeze the other day, would have fully matured and produced viable seeds. 

Let us bear in mind that I have been experimenting with this plant, in outdoor, No Till gardening, for about half a year.  I have been eating it in large amounts, often exceeding a half pound of leaves per day, for most of that time. 

This was meant to be a loading experiment.  I had not intended to continue with this level of consumption for more than a few weeks.  But the fact is, I have become quite content with this quantity, and see no reason whatsoever to reduce it.

And on those days when I refrain from Shmooo so that it will not interfere with my ability to get the best value out of an all-you-can-eat buffet (in which I usually stuff myself beyond normal capacity), I am out in the garden in a few hours, wolfing down Shmooo.

Yet, in spite of these regular ongoing food binges, I am still at least forty pounds lighter than my heaviest weight.  Even then, I would have been regarded as being a little overweight, not obese.

I was not looking at Shmooo as a diet food, but as a way to remedy my tendency not to eat enough green vegetables.  I had no initial idea that it would take on the characteristics of other spices it was mixed with.  Thus, when I use oregano, thyme, rosemary, marjoram, sage, dillweed or whatever, I reduce the amount by half, then add two or three times that much Shmooo.

I originally had no idea that this food would become such a staple portion of my diet.  It just happened.

Now I am experimenting with the buds, which seem slightly stronger in flavor.  I suspect that they have some additional nutrition as well, but I have no convenient way to test that.  But I won't be shipping any of the dried buds until they too have undergone the same sort of loading tests that I did with the leaves.  I have only been eating the buds for about a week.  So far, I think they are better in flavor than the leaves, but not by much.

When I have guests, and they see me eating fresh Shmooo in the garden, I have noticed that about half have some hesitation before their first big bite.  A few have simply refrained from even a nibble of the raw Shmooo, but ask for second helpings of cooked foods in which dried Shmooo was a major constituent.

If you have a member or two of your family who may have a food prejudice or two, I would put some Shmooo in a food that is one of their favorites, perhaps a soup or stew or an omelet.

My recipes tend to change each time I cook.  my usual recipe for coffee includes orange peel, turmeric, baker's cocoa, cinnamon, and these days, a hefty pinch of Shmooo.  But today, I also added some grated lemon peel as well, just to see...  (Oddly, it worked out just fine).  I drank two mugs.

It seems to me that the best way to use Shmooo is just to add it to recipes you have already had good success with, that your family is already enthusiastic about.  Since Shmooo tends to be filling and tends to reduce appetite, particularly if you use as much as we do, you may want to reduce the amount of food you prepare by perhaps a quarter.  I have enough animals that leftovers are not a problem.  Both the cats and dogs finish off whatever we don't eat, and they do so with considerable enthusiasm.

The only reasons you are getting the first Shmooo to go to Canada is that you were diligent in working on the puzzle on the other thread, and you seem unusually openminded and curious.  But I suspect the people who will be most interested in this food will be those who would improve their health and longevity by dropping a lot of weight.  Clearly, you do not have this problem.  But the good side of that is, if you wind up craving this food as much as I do, it will be because, like me, you are eating it only because you like it and like how it makes you feel.

One more thing.  Many of you who have read earlier posts of mine know that it has been my custom for a long time to use a substantial number of different supplemental vitamins, minerals and other trace nutrients, and to do so on a daily basis.  I am taking a fraction of what I did.  There has been no apparent deleterious affect on my health.  Which indicates the possibility that Shmooo is making up the difference.
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #29 on: Wednesday November 05, 2008, 07:44:44 PM »
I am now in the 150's in weight, roughly 50 pounds less than my highest weight.  I can't even remember when I was at this weight.  Maybe forty years ago.  And all without dieting, and some frequent visits (at least weekly) to all-you-can-eat establishments. 

And exercise cannot be playing a big part.  When the cold weather starts, I get less exercise.  Also, about half the dogs and half the cat colony have new homes, so it is a lot less strenuous to give the dogs their daily run.  I don't take them as far, and I walk a lot more than I run. 
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #30 on: Wednesday November 05, 2008, 09:42:04 PM »
After I wrote the last post I went out to see if there was anything left that could be eaten in my wild garden after the freeze a week or so ago.

The wild Indian strawberry patch showed little ill effects in the foliage, but I only found a few berries.  My red clover too showed no damage either, which was interesting because the closest grass showed freeze damage.  The wild onions (maybe chives) were totally dead, at least in front of the house.  But behind the house they were still thriving. 

The various tomato plants had taken terrible damage to the foliage, but the fruit inself was absolutely pristine, green and hard as could be, a glossy medium green.  I picked some and decided to have fried green tomatoes.  Waste not, want not.

I sliced them about a quarter of an inch thick, poured some olive oil into the frying pan, and then couldn't find any bread crumbs or corn meal,  So I ground up some oat meal between my palms, added some cracked black pepper, salt, potassium chloride, and about a tablespoon of powdered Shmooo.

They fried up very nicely.  I ate the whole plate full, and then licked the plate.  They were the best fried green tomatoes I have ever had. 

I don't make too much out of the fact that they were the best, since they were also the only fried green tomatoes I've ever had.  I had been prepared to eat a bite or two, conclude that they were not my kind of food, and throw the rest into the dog food or something.

I will actually eat them again, maybe using bread crumbs or corn meal with the Shmooo next time, although the outmeal was just fine.
« Last Edit: Friday November 07, 2008, 03:22:20 AM by anthropositor »
"The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." Chinese Proverb.

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #31 on: Saturday November 15, 2008, 03:57:54 AM »
I just got a report about Shmooo that I sent out.  It was enthusiastic, but it was Email.  It is not for me to post it here.
« Last Edit: Saturday November 15, 2008, 04:05:52 AM by anthropositor »
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #32 on: Thursday December 18, 2008, 12:35:57 AM »
It has been about six weeks since I have had fresh Shmooo.  I still use some dried leaves crumbled in all my cooking, including my coffee.  Maybe my consumption has been reduced by half since the freeze took out the crop.  I haven't been at my most productive lately and there has been sort of a grim pallor to my mood and attitude.  Part of that may be the sudden turn of weather, and the general pattern of current events.

On the other hand, I did effectively remove half of that fractured incisor the other day, thereby eliminating an emergency trip to a dentist new to me.

But winter hasn't even officially started yet.  I'm starting to feel a little housebound.  The loss of vision has its' inconveniences, but the compensatory learning curve has been interesting and useful.  Even so, if it were not for the vision, I would have at least five square feet of Shmooo sprouts going at all times.  Enough to eat and barter until spring.

Luckily, in the spring, even without sprouts, I'll have fresh young plants enough to keep me going in just a few weeks.  I harvest the plants from five inches tall, on up to six or seven feet.  The odd thing is, the plants supposedly do not grow that tall.  I planted very late, getting only half the growing time I will have next year.

Meantime though I am going to have to get back on track, mood and energy have to be restored.  Returning to my pre-Shmooo levels of supplemental vitamins, minerals and other nutrients should be a good way to start, since I don't really know how much Shmooo I am actually taking in each day.  At a guess, I would say between one and two tablespoons of dried coarsely sifted dried leaves, which I suppose would equate to 10 to twenty tablespoons of minced fresh leaves.  That is quite a reduction in intake.

As far as the old fields of Shmooo go, I won't be sowing any seeds at all in those areas in the spring.  I know I overcrowded the plants deliberately last year.  Those fields will indicate the more natural density for me.  It may be that my plants grew unusually tall, because I gave them too little room to bush out much.  But why wouldn't that have simply stunted them, giving me a bunch of distressed two foot plants, instead of so many six footers up?  It could be that the soil, which has gotten several tons of organic materials from me over the past eight years, and no herbicides or insecticides, is simply unusually healthy.

Along with my No Till gardening efforts, designed to reduce the heavy labor of digging, planting and weeding virtually entirely, I think I have also found the irreducible minimum of labor for composting as well. 

It has always struck me that the folks who have a compost heap have to periodically tumble it or turn it over with a shovel.  I, on the other hand, just distribute it directly on those sections I plan on planting in the next season.  I have quite a variety of mushrooms in my yard.  Many of them come from edible mushrooms that were getting too old to eat, so they were scattered around the yard.  I won't be eating any of those mushrooms that grow as a result.  I am not a mycologist, and a certainly won't take a chance on a potential mistake.

But those mushrooms are certainly not wasted.  Fungi are an essential part of the soil ecology.  Yet I don't hear of anyone else who is going out of his way to be hospitable to all forms of soil fungi, including all the varieties of edible mushrooms I buy commercially.  Probably at least eight or ten varieties.

My egg shells are dried, crushed, mixed with bird feed and widely distributed.  Chicken, beef and pork pones are consumed by the carnivores with the teeth to do it.  When I come back form the Oriental Buffet, I bring my accumulated clam shells, maybe 50 or 60.  I suppose I should run over them with the truck to break them up, but I don't bother.  The dogs like to lick the sauce off them. 

They eat the chicken bones, but I have never seen one dog or pup crunch up a clam, mussel or oyster shell.  The cats too will eat the ends off big chicken bones as well as eating the smaller bones completely, but won't even try to crunch a sea shell.  And the cats distribute that compost widely, even burying it conveniently and enriching the soil all over.  Unfortunately, good with dogs though I may be, I have never taught one how to dig a hole (which many dogs do instinctively), take a dump in the hole and then cover it up again.
But a dog can be taught to use one particular section of his territory.  That is good enough for me.

And it would be a good idea for me to be having more physical activity.  Particularly with the eyesight, I tend not to get out much further than to feed the animals, though today I have a  pound of raspberries I am going to seed various areas with.  The ground is frozen.  It should be a perfect time.  I know nothing about growing raspberries, but I have the notion that if you are going to grow from seed, the raspberries may profit a bit by a freeze or two.  My other berries don't seem to mind.  Muscadine grapes too, may need a little cold weather.  I would like to have a few dozen Muscadine vines going.  If I don't accomplish that in the next few years, I'll read about them and find out what I might be doing wrong.

I lament the kind of dilettante curiosity which saturates our societies.  I think it is the result of our industrialized educational systems.  And yes, probably the internet as well.  I know there are uses for the search engines, and I don't mean to denigrate their value.  But my concern is that we are being spoon fed, often with information embedded within a great deal of garbage.

What are your burning questions?  What would you like to accomplish?
Now, what can you yourself, with the knowledge you already have (possibly), bring to the task?  And, as you are reviewing what you already have on hand, reinspect it from the perspective of your own logic and reason, not just the consensus of opinion.

Try to learn what you can by doing rather than reading what others have done.  Even try to find ways to fly in the face of established prevailing views, if an alternate view has some prospect of bearing fruit.

We live in the moment of absolutely the greatest opportunity there has ever been.  Never in history have so many essential systems to assure our collective wellbeing, been so far out of whack.  Yet, for our comforts and well being, we have become absolutely dependent on a regular water and food supply; transportation repair and health care, replete with monumentally expensive tests, equipment and procedures that only experts can provide. 

We have been digging furrows in the ground to plant crops for millinnia.  Plowing, planting, weeding.  Our crop plants are not as hardy as a result.  They have adapted to the easy life, cannot take the stresses that would hardly be noticed by their wilder cousins.

What if we had a highly nutritious green food crop that could just be seeded by airplane over vast tracts of countryside?  So that anywhere there were people who, for whatever reason, no longer had the resources for a commercial food supply.  So that in an unexpected famine, there would still be a healthy ration to fall back on.  Would that not be a good thing?

For poor or starving people, it would perhaps even be life saving.  But those in the business of agriculture would look at it quite differently.  These edible "weeds" would displace demand.  It is true of me.  Lettuce and other greens are not on my shopping list these days.  Shmooo has supplanted my demand for these other greens.

In the South is a pest plant called Kudzu which likes to take over and choke out virtually anything it competes with.  Pretty scary.  Then along comes a fellow who says, "Hey, this plant could produce alcohol."  Now we no longer have a pest.  We potentially have a useful crop that will regrow itself without effort.

Now I find Kudzu interesting, but I am not especially interested in growing it, for several reasons.  I like many of my other crops.  They seem aggressive enough to fight for their territory.  But I really don't know if they could stand up to this plant.  And I think to test it out, it would be better to take the Shmooo to the Kudzu patch than bring the Kudzu to my Shmooo.  I suppose if someone had a Kudzu infestation going, I could supply them with some Shmooo seeds to see which plant would get the upper hand in a fair fight.

I already know Shmooo is a delightful food in too many ways to count.  I don't even know if Kudzu is edible for humans.  I have every confidence though, that I could find uses for Kudzu other than alcohol production.  But meanwhile, why don't the folks suffering with the plant stop suffering and just figure out some ways to use it?

Same with the Zebra Mussels infesting so many of our waterways.  Are we entirely sure they are just a pest?  Do they taste bad?  Are they poisonous?  would they make good bait, or food at a catfish farm?  Or even for chickens for that matter?

Or are they not food simply because we don't eat them?  I have eaten a lot of things that we do not eat simply because we don't eat them.  And I'll do it many more times before I'm done.  I think I will go have a glass of wine with a few million wild yeasts partying and doing the backstroke in each gulp.   



"The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." Chinese Proverb.

"What all men speak well of, look critically into; what all men condemn examine first before you decide"-- Confucius

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Offline itchychick

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #33 on: Sunday January 11, 2009, 03:30:07 PM »
Well anthro, I've finished the bag of dried shmoo you sent, and I found it to be a pleasant addition to quite a few dishes.  I used it almost as a herb in finishing stews and soups.  Rather like dried parsley, only a much nicer flavour.  It was quite mild, and I agree with you that it seems to amplify the flavour of whatever it's served with.  I have to admit, though, that I didn't notice a huge difference in how I felt eating it.  Maybe the quantities were insufficient.

How would you say that the flavour of the dried shmoo compares with that of fresh?

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #34 on: Monday January 12, 2009, 08:35:42 AM »
A good question, but almost impossible for me to answer.  The truth is, almost all the time, I eat fresh shmooo by itself, or as greens on a sandwich, or with lemon or lime juice sprinkled on it, or a little cracked pepper.

The dried is virtually always added to other foods along with other herbs and spices, or in foods as diverse as coffee, chocolate pudding, steak, chicken, fish, hot breakfast cereals like oatmeal, hot shredded wheat (along with butter, salt and pepper), grits, and so on.  Oh, with regard to the coffee, I do not stir it into the coffee cup.  It goes in the grounds with the other ingredients I use.  I have not tried it in thin liquids like soft drinks either.  But in more thickened soups and sauces and gravies, there is no down side,  And even in a thin hot broth or bullion, its' texture is an asset, not a liability.

I can't really tell you if I am eating more dried Shmooo during the winter than fresh during the growing season.  To do that, I would have to determine the precise water content of the fresh Shmooo leaves, then dry them thoroughly, then weigh the Shmooo after thorough drying, and so on.  Then I would have to carefully weigh each portion I consumed throughout the day.  That would be incredibly tedious, particularly since I don't ordinarily use recipes or measuring spoons or cups when I cook.  When I bake, I'm precise with a few measurements which have to be relatively proportionate,  but otherwise its a fistful of this and a glop of that.

I only measure in analytical chemistry, or when combining reagents in which there might be a safety issue.  Most recently I have been fooling around with the viscosity of the cyanoacrylates I use on my teeth.  I'm sort of careful about those mixes, but come to think of it, I'm not making exact precise measurements there either.  I have no scales that go down below a tenth g, and at the moment, I'm too blind to read that scale anyway.  Let us remember, the Greeks of ancient times did some excellent geometry using straight edges with no markings, not rulers of the sort we use today.  I don't know how I digressed to that.  It must be bedtime.  Good night.
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #35 on: Sunday February 01, 2009, 05:59:32 PM »
Even though we are still recpvering in my state from a freeze emergency which is still affecting more than two hundred thousand people, the big dangerous tree did not collapse on our kitchen.  Our only problem was about a half day without electricity, and one burst water pipe.

It may seem odd that I have just started planting Shmooo.  It is really still early to do it.  We will probably have at least a few more freezes.  I did about a hundred square meters, in the form of a hedge across the front of the yard and up my side of the driveway.  O was distracting myself to a certain extent from some very unpleasant skulldugger.  The younger of my two remaining dogs was not on his chain when I came home at about midnight from some group chess lessons.  Sox is a strong but affectionate dog and on occasion he has just pulled the stake out of the ground and gone for a run dragging the chain and stake.  He is never gone for long.

But I went over to see if the chain and stake were gone.  The stake was still in the ground, chain attached.  And on the other end of the chain, there was SOx's leather collar.  Cut through as if it had been hacked with a hunting knife.  This gave me a terrible sense of foreboding.  I had checked that collar before I left.  It was too dark to check for blood.  During daylight in the morning I was unable to find any blood in the dirt.  That was a great relief.  Perhaps he was just stolen, rather than just strangled or knifed.  I would much rather think that Sox was stolen rather than killed. 

But I have to be realistic.  There is no way SOX could have cut his colar.  It had no space for him to get is lower jaw under it, and if he had, there would have been perforations along with the two hacking cuts.

Couple that with the fact that in the past eight years we have lost perhaps two dozen cats of the feral cat colony due to unknown causes.  Some of the prettist may well have been stolen, and that's fine considering the alternative.  BUt over these eight years I have seen eight or ten in the throes of dying convulsively or in great pain due to some sort of toxin or poison. 

And some of you may remember my efforts to bring Felice, my king cat back to health after his eye was knocked out of its' socket and his upper and lower jaw were broken in an incident I have no real data on.  While he did live for a couple of years and sired some more lovely kittens, he was never the same after that trauma.  The remainder of that incident is described earlier on one of these nutrition threads.  With my eyes in their current condition it would be difficult for me to locate it.  And besides, I am in no mood to look for it.  Also, I am about to leave for my Sunday afternoon group chess class.  But with luck, in a month, I will have some young fresh Shmooo.  I am really looking forward to fresh picked raw Shmooo.  I hope I didn't make too many typos.
"The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." Chinese Proverb.

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #36 on: Monday April 13, 2009, 02:36:04 AM »
While at this late date it is still possible for another freeze to hit, I think it is less and less likely.  The most recent planting has begun to sprout.  So in about three weeks, thinning the crop, I ought to be able to eat fresh Shmooo again.  I have only been eating the dried Shmooo through the winter, in coffee, eggs, soup, in breading on fowl, fish, and so on.  Not even eating all that much.  I stepped on the scale for the first time in maybe a month or two.  I am down to 156 pounds, a loss of about ten more pounds since last time.  I guess it has been about 40 years since I have weighed this little.  Without dieting. 

Just lucky I guess.  I still think this could be a useful thing.  Looking for someone who needs to lose 100 pounds or more.  Modem still fried on my PC, but I still check my gmail and messages here when I can, on a borrowed laptop with Wi-Fi.

"The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." Chinese Proverb.

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #37 on: Friday April 17, 2009, 07:59:31 PM »
Maybe I was a little over optimistic about having some fresh Shmooo in three weeks.  It seems to be slower in development in the cool weather.  When I began growing my first crop last year, it was already hot.
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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #38 on: Friday May 01, 2009, 07:00:28 PM »
The Shmooo now seems to be taking off now, increasing its' growth rate.  I am now beginning to eat fresh wild, uncultivated Shmooo starting today.  If I don't get too enthusiastic, I won't thin out what is currently growing all that much.  This last time I weighed myself, I had broken the 150 lb barrier.  Now the test will be, eating only two or three ounces a day, will the weight still continue to drop off as it did when I was eating a half pound a day in the loading experiments of last season.  I certainly hope not.

The ideal, for me would be to remain at 149 + or - 3 no matter how much or little I eat, with Shmooo as a main vegetable.  And since I have no immediate prospect of returning to a hospital or a doctor's jammed waiting room, I don't expect any further difficulty with any strange bacterial or fungal contagions.  It is interesting to me that the very first serious illness for decades, just happened to occur right after sitting in the crowded waiting room of a general practitioner for the required general physical in preparation for the two eye operations, and then the several hours in hospital for each operation.

I can't draw any firm conclusions about this, but I am certainly glad to have all the follow-up visits out of the way.  If I should have a hospitalized friend in the future, I think I'll just send a get-well card.  Hospitals are good places to avoid.
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"What all men speak well of, look critically into; what all men condemn examine first before you decide"-- Confucius

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Re: The Exotic Maca Plant & UltraNutiritious Shmooo Spice/Vegetable
« Reply #39 on: Tuesday May 12, 2009, 11:39:52 PM »
Now that it is the middle of May, I at last have enough fresh raw Shmooo to eat any amount I like.  I won't need to eat any dry Shmooo until late fall, after the first freeze.  Fresh and raw can't be beat.
"The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." Chinese Proverb.

"What all men speak well of, look critically into; what all men condemn examine first before you decide"-- Confucius

Pray to the Gods, for the Gods are not unless you pray to them.--Don Marquis