Spicy chicken salad

July 20, 2012 § 14 Comments

A while back, I was walking with one of my younger brothers and having a conversation.  We were ambling past a variety of food stands and restaurants and the conversation went something like this:

Brother: Oh, they’re using the old sriracha trick.  Classic move.  Nice.  And sriracha mayo, that stuff is so good.  I swear, sriracha makes anything delicious.

Me: Seriously.

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Strawberry gazpacho

June 8, 2012 § 25 Comments

So, I think I might have had more to share with you.  Some further reflections, maybe a recipe, and many many thanks for your wonderful, kind response to my post about my feast.  But it’s going to have to wait.  It will have to wait because my consciousness has been completely and irrevocably subsumed by this soup.

It’s like a secret that’s just too good.  It takes on a will of its own, growing and pushing and elbowing until it burbles out to be shared, whether or not you meant for it to be aired.  I do want to share this soup with you, and it has decided that it simply can’t wait any longer.

When we ate it for supper a while back Joel exclaimed, “this is the first soup that I can say without qualification that I love.”  Myself, I would count it among a very small handful of soups that I have truly loved.  But it is the only one of said soups that does not also contain more than my week’s allotment of cream in a single bowl.

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Quick pickled cucumber and melon salad

August 22, 2011 § 4 Comments

It’s been another crazy week, this last week.  More travel, more weddings (an exceptionally gorgeous and happy one of some close friends), and a running of errands for my own that could give the running of the bulls a run for its money in the category of harrowing, stampede-like qualities.

It’s all been beyond fun, but also beyond exhausting.  So, I’m going to take a little moment to share this refreshing little gem of a salad with you.  It makes me think of a spa food, which makes me think, “ahhhhhhh, I’m so relaxed.” (In spite of a certain preponderance of the evidence indicating the opposite.)

Granted, I’ve never been to a spa, so I can’t really speak to the nature of the food served at one.  But, here’s what I imagine spa food to be like: light and refreshing, nourishing and satisfying, full of pure, sensual flavors.  Food that lets you feel like you’re pampering yourself, while also being good for you.

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Soothing avocado soup

July 23, 2011 § 9 Comments

I’m afraid I don’t really know what to say right now. I’m in shock.  Still in shock and disbelief over the unspeakable tragedy yesterday in Norway.

My parents and brother are there right now visiting the rest of our family.  I got a call to say they were alright even before I saw the news.  I was relieved, but also had the wind knocked out of me by the horror.  I spent the rest of the day checking the Norwegian news for updates.  And intermittently bursting into tears.

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June 1, 2011 § 41 Comments

Mushroom-falafel!  (Yes, the exclamation point is necessary there.)  It doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, I’ll admit.  But, what was I supposed to call it?  Mushlafel?  Falafshroom? See? Those are even worse sounding.  But, like the kid with the weird name who is so awesome that by the end of the year all the other kids also want to be named Kermit too, this mushroom-falafel is so fabulous it straight-up owns its name.

I’m a little embarrassed that I get as excited as I do when I make something really good.  But, I do.  I get quite delighted with myself, in fact, and can’t wait to share how delicious said really good thing is.  This dish definitely falls into that category.

It started with a falafel craving.

One of the most unfortunate things about having discovered an intolerance to a sprouting inhibitor enzyme (besides not being able to eat almonds, but I’ll save that complaint for another day) is that I no longer eat falafel because of the chickpeas.  It’s a huge loss because I used to practically live off of falafel.  I was obsessed with the stuff.

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Cucumber and yogurt salad with lemon

July 12, 2010 § 5 Comments

Some friends and I have a “band” that we started last year, known as The Muddy Gospel Band (we have also considered calling ourselves The Iran Contra-dance Affair, but I’m not sure that’s actually funny to anyone else).  Those quotation marks around “band” are key to understanding our level of professionalism and talent.  (Though we did do a single recording session last year, orchestrated by a sound technician who also happened to be a finalist in the International Beard and Mustache Competition, natural category.)  I mean, I don’t want to shortchange us, we’re all decent to excellent musicians and singers, but our method of practicing is approximately this:  randomly get together every couple of months, share supper, then grab some beers and sing your way through old gospel songbooks, Gillian Welch’s, and Dave Rawlings’ albums, finally end with some quality Bob Dylan.

Our four part harmony is not spot on; we crowd around a computer screen to read what the lyrics to the song we’re singing are; our mandolin player only knows 4 chords (er, that would be me); but the experience is always transcendent.  The stress, the anxiety, the conflict that seem to come with the territory of participating in this wonky world of ours, become transparent, wispy, insubstantial.  They float away like dandelion puffs on the breeze of our voices.  Every day, when I listen to the news or browse headlines online, I’m bewildered and saddened by our collective insanity and  apparently bizarre priorities.  Each time I share a meal or sing with friends, I rediscover some things that are true and good, and find a new little foothold to balance on.  Our Muddy Gospel practices have both, accompanied by lots of good old-fashioned belly-laughs.  “I don’t know what tomorrow brings.  It’s alive with possibility.  All I know is I feel better when I sing.  Burdens are lifted from me…” (that’s from “Method Acting” by Dave Rawlings – seriously awesome song) « Read the rest of this entry »

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