Saturday, June 20, 2009

SPH: Creamy Comforts

Clockwise from left: Creamy pumpkin bisque, Coldstone Creamery
raspberry sherbet and creme brulee coffee with cream..yum.
(Click pictures to enlarge)

"The friendly cow, all red and white,
I love with all my heart:
She gives me cream with all her might,
To eat with apple tart."
~ Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894),
The Cow, A Child's Garden of Verses

The word "creamy" invokes a feeling of comfort and that leads directly to food... comfort food like macaroni and cheese, lobster bisque, creamed corn, creamy oatmeal... and these. A few years ago I grew pumpkins in our the old house and things got out of hand but we did harvest several large fairytale pumpkins and in addition to traditional pumpkin pies we made a pumpkin bisque. It was spicy and served hot, a tasty treat. The recipe as well as the links to our pumpkin growing saga are posted HERE. Another comfort food that I love are sherbets or sorbets; I actually like them better than ice cream as they are smooth and fruity and less heavy. True they don't give you the buzz of true Italian chocolate gelato, but they will most certainly qualify as my comfort food.

And how could I leave out my creamy coffee. My brother accuses me of having more cream than coffee in my morning or noon or evening cup. It may be true. I never liked coffee, never even started drinking coffee until 2001 and then only because I found a small coffee shop in Columbus, MS called The Coffee Plantation and they served the flavored coffee of the day and I fell right in love with the creme brulee flavor. The last time I went back to Columbus, the coffee shop was closed and turned into some small trendy (as trendy as a small southern town gets) boutique... what a loss. I still find my flavored beans online and savor that smooth taste each day... as my brother would say... "Coffee is the nectar of the gods."

Clockwise from top: Daisies...she loves me, she loves me not;
Easter lily's creamy complexion; pale, perfect orchid.

"The cream of the crop" ~ Proverb

Of course, there are other "creamy" items that have nothing to do with food. Creamy is not quite white, not quite beige, not completely a color and not always a texture. It doesn't suggest things that are gritty, chunky, hard, crisp or rough... but it does make one picture smooth baby cheeks, swirling opaque eddies of freshly gathered milk and here, the soft, slightly off-white petals of often forgotten flowers. I think that in this case.. "creamy" denotes both color and texture and if you really stretch your imagination... a faint sweet scent, as well. Go on.. stick your face right into a bunch of Easter lilies and breath deeply... well, not if you have allergies and not if you care about that stubborn pollen that is now firmly entrenched on your nose... but drink in that "creamy" smell.

Swirls of cream... gardenias

"If time were a color, I bet it would be a tasteful off-white." ~ Greg Parrish

For me, the creamiest of all "creamy" flowers is the gardenia. Our neighbor at the old place grew small gardenia bushes outside his back fence and in the summer their dark green leaves and small creamy antique white flowers were so fragrant that even my formaldehyde burned olfactory endings could smell the sweetness. These aren't the large florist gardenias like the ones I had in my wedding bouquet so long ago, but they maintain the same color, shape and most of all that thick heady fragrance of the classic gardenia.

When we moved, he offered us several small bushes that he was starting in his garage and now they are growing in both our front flower bed and outside the back fence next to the preserve. Already we have seen a few small creamy blooms and eagerly await more in the years to come.

Creamy lavender sherbet rose. Posted by Picasa

"Life is like a rose . . .
More exquisite and precious,
When shared with others."
~ Jane Oechsle Lauer

Finally, this "creamy" rose is for my brother. He hasn't seen it bloom in person yet but it is the most unusual color and most difficult to capture on film or in words. It is lavender in color, perhaps with a touch of pale pink but there is a creamy milkiness to the petals as if they were a pale boysenberry sherbet, pastel and icy with almost a shimmer on the outer surface of each one. I have forgotten the variety name but it is my favorite of the roses we have.

I am anxious to see all the "creamy" entries for this weeks Photo Hunt... I do hope there are not too many of the food variety... food pictures make me hungry and tend to put the pounds on me.. just by looking at them.... my mom, however, would welcome any posted recipes for this theme. She loves cream soups!

Thanks to Tennessee Chick for hosting the Photo Hunt each week.

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