Sea Shells Cape Shells & Beef & Cabbage

        When was the last time you studied a shell or took the time to lookacross a beach and see pick out one shell that stood out from the rest.When was the last time you looked at a picture of a shell or a group ofshells and just lamented for a moment about the last time you reallystopped from all the hustle and bustle to reflect on some of the hiddenbeauty that the sea has left behind uncovered.
      I was scrounging the web the past couple of days looking forrecent pictures taken on the Cape and I ran across some pictures ofshells. Shells in groups, singular shells, some still entwined in seaweed, some partially buried in the sand. Scollop shells, mussel shells,clam shells, conch shells. snail shells and quahog shells. As I startedto look at them I starting seeing the different colors that weavedunsuspecting pattern across each surface. The contrasts of light anddark green seaweed against the many hues of beige against the stillwinter's, cold, damp, gray sands. Shells shrouded in the milky mistyfog laying a distance off on a baron beach while back dropped by thecold dark blue of the sea with an occasional white froth speckled inthe horizon.
      While you are taking in all the colors that you have never reallynoticed before did you ever stop to and look at all the shapes. Like asnow flake not one is identical to another. Size, shape, patterns,ridges, spirals, disks, smooth, bumpy, some with barnacles stillattached, some still with their inhibitor still within, most have beenevacuated. But all have had a purpose.
      A few who know me would say this is just my ADD kicking in withmy over obsessing, some would say it's my Artistic side coming to theforefront of my awareness. Well maybe it's a bit of both, but reallysometimes we need to stop and just take in that which is around us.From a nature's view, to even a spiritual perspective, to just planremember a good time that came on the beach that those shells arelaying on. There is way to much going on in this world right now tothat can bog us down, choke our imagination, limit our relationshipsand smog out our relaxing and refreshing memories. Something as whatmay seem incidental in the scheme of life can help remind us of thesimplicities that can bring a calming restoring healing to our dailymadness. Seeing that simple, beautiful, colorful, unique shell, on afamiliar beach,, on Cape Cod can be the breath of fresh air you need toget through another day. It will also change the way you look at thebeach the next time you go and the way to see all those shells on thebeach.
      Well that's enough deep thought for one day, or one week.Remembering good times, relaxing times can come in many different ways,don't let the small things get past you,, even if they are as small asa shell, or maybe even the grain of same next to the shell. If someonewould check the oil in the lamp in the light house and be sure it isfull and burning bright. I want to be sure I have a strong beacon tolead me the way home. Until next time,, enjoy every day and moment onCape Cod.     
         This is one of those recipes that could be for just aboutanytime of the year when you just need one of those hearty well fillingmeals. I can enjoy cabbage just about anyway you can fix it from slawto stuffed, and boiled to fried. It really is an easy and versatile vegetable. It can be seasoned, lightly buttered, and mixed with manyother resources and goes with more then just corned beef on St.Patrick's day. So take a look at this recipe with a new perspective andgive it a try sometime other then just on New Year's day or St.Patrick's day. This recipe comes from the wife's collection of newspaper clipped recipes from better then 30 years ago. Now on with theshow.

      This week's recipe: Beef & Cabbage

  •       4      slices      bacon, finely diced
  •       1      large        onion, finely diced
  •       1      tsp.         salt
  •                              Pepper to taste
  •       1      tsp.         poultry seasoning
  •       1      egg         slightly beaten
  •       1/2   cup          soft bread crumbs
  •       2      lbs.          lean ground beef
  •       1      head        cabbage, shredded
  •       1      can          beef bouillon ( 10 1/2 ounces)


     Fry bacon until crisp. Add onion and saute until onion is transparentbut not brown. Add salt, pepper, poultry seasoning, egg and breadcrumbs to ground beef. Mix with onion and bacon. Place a layer ofshredded cabbage in 3 quart casserole dish. Top with layer of meatmixture. Continue alternating layers, ending with cabbage. Pourbouillon over all. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.Remove cover during last 15 minutes to brown cabbage. Makes appox 6servings.

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