It is time to get smart, I’m so last century! I do not own a smart phone. Until now I have rationalized this decision for a number of reasons:
Still so old skool
a). I don’t like cell phones period. I find them intrusive, and I do not always want to be contactable – especially when driving.
b). I detest texting (I do however, consider tweeting a necessary evil for competing in today’s market place). Both are final nails in the coffin of the art of conversation. People no longer socialize – they network. Are we really all so boring we must be limited to 140 characters?
c). I abhor people who constantly play with their phone rather than make eye contact over dinner. If I’m not interesting enough to hold your undivided attention, then you are certainly not deserving of my time – I’d rather stay home and watch water boil.
The art of conversation
Until now, a simple cell phone has covered any value the instrument could possibly hold for me – my family can contact me when I am traveling, and I can call for help if my car breaks down. In fact, I so seldom use my cell phone that I scoffed at the premise of adding the cost of internet (to which I have more than enough of at home) to my bill.
My cousin Drew teaching an old dog new tricks
Is it too early to start next year’s Santa wish list? What smart phone do you own, and what apps do you find indispensable?
Cream of Tomato Soup
I know you East Coasters are still shivering from the blizzard, and we have a new storm headed our way tomorrow, so I thought some soup might be a good idea! Here is one made with things you are likely to have on hand, so you can stay in, warm, and dry.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 28 ounce can fire roasted chopped tomatoes
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1/4 cup milk (use cream or half & half if not watching your fat and calorie intake)
salt and pepper to taste
Freshly grated Parmesan for garnish, optional
White truffle oil or good extra-virgin olive oil for garnish, optional
1). Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven, over medium heat for a minute. Add onion, celery, and carrots; cook 8 minutes or until softened. Add garlic, bay leaf, oregano, basil, and bay leaf; stir until fragrant, 30 seconds.
2). Add the tomato paste and vinegar, stirring frequently for a couple minutes. Add tomatoes and broth, stirring occasionally while bringing it to a boil. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes over medium-low heat.
3). Remove bay leaf. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender until smooth. Add back to pan, and bring up to a simmer again. Stir in the milk, and season to taste.
Serving Suggestions: Serve in bowls with a sprinkle of Parmesan and drizzle of oil.