Monday, November 26, 2007

Purple beans and Breadcrumb patties.

Look at my harvest! Enough beans to feed five people, and there are plenty left on the plants. Brennan and I ate a couple while we were picking them. Bright green inside. I made some breadcrumb patties for dinner with mashed potato and steamed carrots and beans. Look at how the beans turned out...

Green! Isn't nature an amazing thing? Who would've thought that simple beans would evolve over thousands of years into something that can change colour with the simple application of microwaves. How did the beans know that microwaves were going to be invented? Imagine if humans slipped up and missed how to use microwave technology. There all the purple beans would be... hanging from the vines, really cross that no one would be able to appreciate the amazing colour change they were capable of. "All that trouble manipulating our dna for nothing", they'd fume. How lucky that some science guy tinkering with stuff in a laboratory discovered the key that now lets them mystify and delight my family instead. Ahh, the fun you can get from simple veggies!

The bread crumb patties are something I make very rarely, but the kids love them. Mum used to make them when she was flour/egg and breadcrumbing schnitzels in the olden days. Any of the coating left over she'd mix together and fry along with the actual dinner. Absolutely gorgeous. Last night I came home at about 5 so I thought I'd use the beans and have a meat and 3 veg meal. Just like Mum used to make! I was a bit tired so I wanted to do something easy.

Breadcrumb Patties.

All I use are packaged breadcrumbs, eggs, parsley (my parsley plant went to seed, so I threw it out. I used the leaves from the top of a celery instead), salt, pepper and a bit of milk. Mix until it gets to a nice consistency, drop into a frypan in pattie sized portions, and there you go! Great with tomato sauce. (Don't make them too thick, or they might not cook in the middle. Then they're not so nice, as you can imagine.)

We're into the last stages of interviews now. The difficult ones. These are mainly the kids who wouldn't work for an ipod with $1000 strapped to it. Of course by this stage of the game they can't rely on natural ability to get good marks like they may (or sadly, may not) have been able to do in the past, so these interviews are a wake up call for some. Most end up getting a bit of a shock and walk out a bit shaken. Others walk into the room with their head so firmly buried in the sand that you can practically see the bucket full of the stuff they have on their shoulders.

There are only three kids who we simply can't promote to year 11. They are totally different, except for the fact that they've failed just about every subject. One is lazy and hasn't done a stroke of work since year 7, one just doesn't have the wattage but she's a lovely girl who tries reasonably hard, and one covers those two bases but is also covering a world of other problems. I'm dreading her interview. She is a head burier. In fact I think she's buried everything but the tip of her nose. She hung up on me yesterday when I told her it was pointless to have an interview with just her, and I rescheduled it to tomorrow so her Dad could be there "to talk about her future". She'll have to either repeat year 10 or maybe go to TAFE. Trouble is, I don't think she's mature enough to handle TAFE. But she's not mature enough or bright enough to handle the work at year 11 either. It's an awful situation. I really feel for her parents. When I called her Dad at work to organise the new interview time, the weariness that came into his voice when I said who I was and why I was calling was sad.

The other girl is a totally different story. She and her parents opened up the interview by saying that they all feel that she should repeat the year. She's new to the school anyway and she's one of the youngest in her year level, so they don't see a social problem with it. She's happy, so are they and I can't tell you how relieved I was! Problem solved before I even had to bring it up. I love clear sighted parents.

Heigh ho! With a bit of luck these interviews should be over by the end of the week. Then I just have to write student managers reports on the front of 130 kids reports (bleuch!) and then the rest of the year will be a smooth ride down to Christmas. I'll be preparing for next year's classes, moving back into staffroom 1 (I've hopefully got a desk right near some of my friends) and looking forward to the holidays. Only 4 weeks to go till Christmas!!!


Marita said...

Interesting to hear the other end of parent/teacher interviews. My nephew scraped into year 11 this year by the skin of his teeth. Bright boy but just can't be bothered preparing/studying. Who goes to a physics exam without a calculator? My nephew is who (mind you his Uncle my hubby would have done the same).

Is sad because now he is facing having to repeat year 11. Big slap in the face for him, especially as his g/f who is already 12 months older than him will be going onto year 12.

I think sometimes we parents forget these things are just as UNfun for teachers as they are for us.

M said...

LOVE those beans. Aren't they amazing. I'd love to show my kids that "trick".

I don't envy teachers at this time of the year especially with all the new reporting requirements here in NSW.

River said...

I had an interview with my son's counsellor when he was in year 12. That was the year of my divorce and although K had been told he could see J anytime he wanted, he chose to ignore us in favour of his girlfriend. J was devastated and began staying home from school. I didn't know this as I was working long hours to keep us and assumed he was getting up and going to school. A phone call while at work enlightened me. At the interview we discovered that J had missed so much work he'd have to repeat the year, even though it was only June, he had no chance of catching up. We discussed other options and decided between the three of us that since J had completely lost interest, he'd be better off leaving school and working for a while, then maybe picking up year 12 at a later date. He's been at work ever since, he loves the job, they love him, and he's just gotten a raise. He's 26 now. Never did get back to school.
Did you save the seed from that parsley before you threw it out?

Janet said...

I love those purple beans and grow them most years (not this year because of househunting and maybe having to move, eek). But anyway I was just going to suggest with the parsley that if you let it go to seed, you'll have parsely for ever and ever. We have it in the most unlikely corners of the garden now and there's always some that's edible. When it grows where we don't want we just pull it up and compost it.

I feel sad for the kids you're interviewing. If they end up leaving school or TAFE, and don't get a job, they end up being my customers....

Frogdancer said...

On no!! I threw it out...
Never mind. Bentleigh market has a fabulous plant stall that sells seedlings for 4 punnets for $10. I'll go there next Sunday and get some more. I planted some capsicum seedlings yesterday that I grew from a supermarket cappie. let's hope that they grow and produce heaps. They'll be for freeeeee!!!!

maybaby said...

Ah! We grew those purple beans this year. They came in a mix with regular green beans and yellow wax beans. Very colorful. Would be much more cool if they stayed purple, though.

I generally enjoy conferencing with parents, but there are always a few that are dicey. I, too, love clear-sighted opposed to the head-buriers. Or the blamers.