Tipi Wind

It’s Mother’s Day! An annual celebration at the Tipi Wind Ranch, and to commemorate this year I let Robin stain the house. She was motivated, and the weather was favorable, so she broke out her old floral one piece; lathered up with SPF 4 and “gott’er dun,” but not before painting three porch rockers screaming green.

We erected some scaffold, so I can get up on the roof and paint the dormers. While inspecting the job before me, I discovered all the screws holding down the sheet metal roof were loose, so now I have to get up there with a drill and seat them all back down. Add this to my already long list : finish flagstone patio, weld white pipe fence and cables across front of barn and pasture, fix tractor, fix hay implements, train horses, train dogs, and . . . the list goes on.

I prefer to have five projects going at the same time, that way I never get bored. Weather permitting, I work on outdoor projects, weather changes; I work on indoor projects. The ultimate goal here is to not get blown off the roof, struck by lightning, or face premature death by some unanticipated force of nature, or machine.

At 4 PM I made a large fire out back and started preparing my world renowned cilantro chicken, after all, it is Mother’s Day. The recipe goes like this: Take a large seasoned cast iron Dutch oven; pour in a quarter cup of olive oil and add two heaping tablespoons of crushed garlic. Take a whole frying chicken and cut in half down the middle. Place it in the Dutch oven skin side up, cover that with a half dozen hot Italian sausage, then add two sliced green peppers (red or yellow will suffice) add one whole onion sliced; chop a whole bundle of cilantro and sprinkle that over everything, then pour in a 12 oz beer.

Back at the fire I have plenty of hot burning coals and flame, so I set the Dutch oven next to the coals on level ground. I turn it about every twenty minutes, keeping it level at all times. Wisps of tantalizing vapor escape the heavy lid, while I listen to the tune of sizzling delight inside the pot. I pull the Dutch oven out of the fire after an hour or so to check on the progress. When the chicken falls off the bone it’s done; usually about two hours after the cast iron gets hot, it’s practically impossible to over cook this meal unless you leave it in the fire, say . . . overnight.

Presto, another memorable Mothers Day with Cilantro chicken, steamed asparagus and a bottle of chardonnay. Robin received cards, praise, and a familiar little box to mark the occasion, because she’s my little painter.

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