Robin Anish | The Table is Set: Finding recipes, friends at tag sale
I picked the perfect day for a tag sale this past Saturday. The weather was spot-on for spending a day outdoors with sunny skies, a few billowy clouds, a light breeze and a gentle warmth that lingered somewhere between the heat of summer and the cooler air of autumn.
The financial gain was modest, but this tag sale was well worth every strenuous minute I put into sorting and lugging because I met the nicest people!
First to arrive was a friendly woman with questions about a weedwacker, but soon the conversation went from "Does it work?" to "I hope we run into each other sometime." I felt like I made a new friend.
Next was a dad in search of a little something to bring home to his young daughter. She likes glitter; he dickered a bit and left with a bunch of glitter. It was sweet to see this dad choosing a treat for his little girl, but he probably should have bought the vacuum I had for sale, too ... he'll need it!
A rather shy young lady with her mom wanted to try her hand at making cupcakes and went home with a mini-cupcake pan. I met a precocious youngster interested in a kit for making bracelets. She questioned whether it was age appropriate and how much. I said $2; she said $1. Sold!
An enthusiastic conversation with a fit and feisty 74-year-old woman wound up with her kudos to The Berkshire Eagle, its recent purchase and improvements.
The afternoon brought younger adults interested in artsy stuff, clothes and cooking, resulting in sales of yarn, art supplies, clothes, cookware and lots of talk time.
It was a pleasure meeting a couple, who after 30 years of renting, recently bought their first home. The stacks of dishes they bought will be gracing their Thanksgiving table this year.
My attention turned to a son helping his elderly mother navigate the tag sale. She raised him well.
If the most you see of your neighbors is waving as you drive pass each other on the street, have a tag sale on your front lawn and they will come ... and they did! I loved chatting and catching up with everyone.
Sorting through cookbooks for the tag sale, I found a long-forgotten recipe that is perfect for a weeknight meal.
1 pound ground beef or Italian sausage
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cups marinara sauce
8 oz shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Brown the ground beef or sausage along with the onion. Drain excess fat. Stir in marinara sauce and pour into a 9x13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.
Whisk together the eggs, milk, oil, flour and salt until smooth. Pour evenly over the mozzarella cheese and sprinkle Parmesan over all.
Bake for 30 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Cut into squares to serve.