Sunday, September 17, 2017

Mushroom Stroganoff

Servings: 4

  • Splash of olive oil or water
  • 2 onions chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic pressed
  • 16 oz. mushrooms (two 227mg packages or about 2 cups) chopped
  • 1 cup veggie broth and a big splash or two of red wine
  • 1 can coconut milk (400ml/1 ¾ c)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 Tbsp. vegan Worcestershire sauce or soy sauce (or a mixture of both)
  • Smoked or hot paprika and salt to taste
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 3 Tbsp. flour (divided)
  1. Heat oil or water and cook onions until translucent.
  2. Add mushrooms and garlic and cook on medium heat until moisture has evaporated (7-10 min.).
  3. Reduce heat and add 2 Tbsp. flour; then add 1 cup of the coconut milk, stirring constantly.
  4. Add bay leaves and broth and simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Stir in last ¾ cup of coconut milk, Worcestershire (or soy), pepper, salt, paprika. Turn heat to medium and add 1 Tbsp. flour and whisk.
  6. Add more flour if you want the sauce to be thicker.
Serve over mashed potatoes.

This is a recipe that my friend Susan makes and then dehydrates to take backpacking.  It's so good at home that I might need to get a dehydrator to take it on a trip!

Jim vs Skill Saw

We interrupt the report from the Olympic National Park backpacking trip to report on Jim's accident with a skill saw.

You can see the cut in the bone

Unfortunately, Jim had an accident that caused a skill saw to hit him on his right leg just above his boot.   He was able to drive himself to the ER where they cleaned it and got him ready for emergency surgery.  They were able to repair two tendons and a bunch of muscles but were not able to repair a nerve that was cut.  Luckily the nerve went to the top of his foot and not the bottom or sides where it would have been more problematic.  He also cut the fibula almost completely thru!  They just left that bone to heal.  OH! And they also removed a piece of the saw blade from his leg.  Ick!

Waiting after too much morphine!

Waiting for the trauma surgeons

Ready for surgery

Resting at home

He came home from the hospital the same day - after 2 hours of surgery - and has been home recuperating.  He cannot bear any weight for 6 to 8 weeks and then will need rehab.

Oympic National Park - Day 3

My favorite pic of the whole trip!

On day 2 we hiked from Clear Lake to Heart Lake, which is literally a heart shaped lake!

We had to hike a mile and half up hill to get out of Clear Lake and back on the main trail.  We decided to break up that hike by packing up in the morning and hiking to Lunch Lake for breakfast.  That was about the half way point out.

The hiking on this day was a large portion of being on the edge of the world.  Grace and I walked ahead to stay focused and didn't stop for a lot of flower and mountain gazing.  But we were able to see Mt Olympus thru the clouds.

We got thru the scariest part and stopped at an outcropping of rocks, that still had a big snow patch, and had lunch.

Clear Lake on the way out

Breakfast at Lunch Lake

Morning tea at Lunch Lake

Hiking down from Lunch Lake to head UP to the main trail

Round Lake on the way out

This shows the angle of the drop off - what it doesn't show is it goes on for hundreds of feet!

These flowers are called Hairy Susans because this is what Susan looks like after a few days on the trail!

The upper part of 7 Lakes Basin - it was like moon scape

More of the scary trail

In the late afternoon as we were approaching Heart Lake, we had tons of fog!   The fog continued all nite.  Luckily we were able to get a camp spot in the trees to shelter us a bit from the wind, fog and morning rain.

We found tons of frogs and pollywogs at Heart Lake

Heart Lake was the coldest spot - we were wearing all our clothes

We saw 7 bears around Heart Lake - the were busy eating berries

On our last nite, we hung all our bandanas to form a camp flag.  And we adorned mustaches because that's our tradition!

The High Divide Trail

Lunch spot

Tiny frogs at Heart Lake

Baby Lake next to Heart Lake

Heart Lake

Fog and backpacks at Heart Lake

This was how Shannon slept - no tent.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Olympic Penninsula - Day 2

Contemplating the vastness

Leaving Deer Lake

Day 2 started at Deer Lake and ended at Clear Lake.  The trail was about 3.5 miles uphill to a junction and then 1.3 miles downhill into the 7 Lakes Basin.  Coming down the hill into the Basin we saw Round Lake, Lunch Lake and 2 bears!

In the morning hile packing up from Deer Lake, I was stung by a wasp!  Boy did that hurt!  I stuck my foot in the cold lake for 5 minutes, took some Benadryl and then tied up my boot!  It hurt a little at first but then difficulty of the hike outweighed the pain in my foot. By the evening the swelling was gone and there was no itchiness as long as I didn't touch it.

blueberry and huckleberry stains

All along the trail we stopped to eat blueberries and huckleberries.   They were abundant and delicious.

Susan and I had the same brand boots but hers were larger and men's because she has a giant bunion she has to work with. I was trying my new silk socks for the first time - which I loved (see the white socks). Susan uses old nylon knee highs instead!  We are a couple of beauties!

Moss in the creek on the way to Clear Lake

Our spot to get water at Clear Lake

Gobbling up the berries

Bear on the way into the 7 Lakes Basin

Deer at Clear Lake

Working on her bandana

Clear Lake at dusk

Our tent at Clear Lake

It wasn't too buggy but as long as we brought them, we wore them!

Huckleberries on the bottom, Blueberries on the top

Hiking into the basin

Lunch at Lunch Lake
Once we got into the Basin, we decided to stop at Lunch Lake for lunch before trudging on.  G and I enjoyed our highly envied backpacking chairs while eating cheese, crackers and an apple.

Shannon's husband gave her a card to open on the trail and it included this balloon.  It was so sweet.  He even addressed it to "Shannon, the red headed hiker".

Our camp spot

We had Clear Lake all to ourselves - even though someone came by in the lake afternoon for a skinny dip!  G kept making them uncomfortable by waving to them.

Clear Lake

We spent the afternoon reading, working on our bandanas and having our traditional tea time.  After dinner, we sat around and were entertained by Shannon's conversation starter book.  We were so distracted by it, we did not get ready for bed when it was still light out and had to scramble when it was dark and started raining!

It rained on and off that nite but we were nice and dry in our tents.

Round Lake on the left, Lunch Lake on the right
Wasp sting!

On the trail to 7 Lakes Basin