The American factory may not be completely a thing of the past. I've been working in my own version of it on two fronts.
I've been in a marathon of paper grading over the past couple of weeks, and yesterday I finished the last batch of ten-page term papers and turned in grades. (Hallelujah!)
I can do some fairly plain knitting while I read, and so my pile of fingerless mitts for Christmas gifts has grown while I've graded. Multi-tasking isn't part of factory work, but it's more an adaptation to my life as a contemporary woman.
Between undergraduate and graduate school I worked in the plant at General Mills, where my mom worked in the office for many years. Those months on the graveyard shift, dropping coupons into the bottoms of empty cereal boxes as they came down the conveyor belt, kept me motivated in my studies.
One of upshots of all those years of school is that, even though I do an occasional graveyard shift, there's no more single-tasking for me. Plus my work environment is a lot quieter.
Here's the recipe for Butternut Squash Risotto for Allie, adapted from one in Oprah magazine. I hope it helps you eat up all the squash you harvested this year.
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth (I use the veggie broth that comes in the cartons)
2 T olive oil
1/2 small onion, finely chopped
1 cup arborio rice
2 small garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 med butternut squash (about 1.5 lbs), peeled, seeded, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes (you can also use acorn and other winter squashes)
8 large sage leaves, chopped (omit or substitute dried if you don't have it)
2 T butter
2 t salt
freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup crumbled Gorgonzola
1/4 cup toasted chopped pecans (I use walnuts)
In a large heavy-bottomed pan, over a medium-high flame, heat the olive oil. Add onion and saute for 2 minutes. Add the rice, stir for 1 minute. Add the garlic and squash, and cook for a minute. Lower the heat to medium and add 1/2 cup of the broth and stir until the liquid is absorbed, but the rice isn't sticking to the pot. Continue adding 1/2 cup broth and stirring until the liquid is absorbed, about 20-25 minutes, or until the rice is cooked, the squash is tender, and you've used all the broth.
Remove from the heat. Add sage, butter, salt. Season with pepper and stir. Add the Gorgonzola and nuts. Serves 4.