Thursday, June 09, 2011

Amaretto sauce-covered ants…

We heard an interesting thing on a nature program recently: In parts of Africa where humans coexist with army ants, when word comes that the ants--which are known to eat anything and everything in their path--are headed for the village, everybody grabs their babies and the chickens and they vacate the village. The invading ants thoroughly clean the huts of any organic matter, and then the people come back. Works out well for both.

Ants are described in admirable terms in the Bible…

Take a lesson from the ants… learn from their ways and become wise! Though they have no prince or governor or ruler to make them work, they labor hard all summer, gathering food for the winter.

And indeed, they do labor hard.

The ants that live with us are consummate scavengers, and I can relate.

I got a strong dose of the “scavenger” gene from my dad – I can hardly resist looking into a dumpster or a trash can; within recent memory, for example, I found a really nice bucket and some other good stuff in a trash can in the park. I don’t go as far as a friend of mine, who regularly ate produce she found in the dumpster in back of the supermarket, but I have found some cool stuff on occasion.

At any rate, this is about ants. Within 15 minutes or so of a cockroach being smashed (and unfortunately for us, there are quite a few cockroaches who seem to want to be in the house with us...)

they have found it...

and are busy recycling it.

I think it is interesting that nowhere does Franz Kafka say that poor Gregor Samsa woke up one morning to discover he was a cockroach, but I think just about everybody who has read The Metamorphosis  assumes that is the insect he was. I mean, he could have been a June bug -- which can be annoying, but most people don't hate them and don’t think them “vermin.” 

Unfortunately for them, the ants don’t know the difference between a smashed cockroach and $4.99-per-pound rainbow trout that has been set out to thaw on a rack. I guess they must have thought they hit the Mother Load -- quite a group of them ended up getting washed down the drain the other night.

Richard decided a few weeks ago that I deserved a special treat. The trout were on sale and so he bought four of them. And then he splurged even more and bought me a small bottle of medium-expensive amaretto so I could make amaretto sauce to go on them.

To make a wonderful sauce for trout or other mild-flavored fish (and this is OK for nondrinkers because all the alcohol evaporates off), and I think it would be wonderful on warm rice…

Take about 2 ounces of slivered almonds or whole almonds that have been chopped up a bit, and toast them in a 1 tbsp of melted butter, but don’t burn them (like I did the first time) ….

Then add 1/4 cup of amaretto…

Then add 1/2 cup of heavy cream. I don’t have heavy cream, so I put twice as much powdered milk as needed in 1/2 cup of water and added that, and then let it simmer a bit and reduce down….

Then, you can add some chopped grapes, or diced peaches, or other sweet fruit.

Very tasty. Unlike ants which live with us, which don’t taste good at all (has anyone ever actually eaten chocolate-covered ants?)

1 comment:

Far Side of Fifty said...

Nope never eaten ants..that I know of, but anything chocolate covered must be good. They certainly are great recyclers:)