Molasses spice cookies (grain free)

December 17, 2012 § 13 Comments

molassess cookie and milk

Life is really crazy right now, friends.  I honestly can’t quite keep up.  There’s holiday hustle, and major, major work bustle, and there are current events and insanity and life, really.  It just is crazy.

But in the midst of so much action, so much feeling, so much, I keep having these moments where my breath catches in my throat and I almost suffocate from the enormity of the sense that I am so blessed.  So, so blessed.  These stresses and worries are privileges, each a reminder.

The packages to be mailed, the gifts to be made, the notes to be sent show that I have people I love and who love me, wonderful, meaningful relationships to attend to.

The work to be done, the daunting decisions to be made, the worried conversations about scenario after scenario at all hours of the day mean that we have work, we are taking risks, we’re in a position to take risks, we have each other to talk to about it, and so much enthusiastic support from others that it’s almost absurd.

The emotions, oh the emotions, the tears of sadness and fury at the state of the world remind me that I care, that I’m able to care, and that I don’t have to be complacent.

molasses cookies

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Goat cheese stuffed grape leaves with olives, raisins, and mint

June 29, 2010 § 5 Comments

San Francisco was a whirlwind.  Actually, to be more accurate I should probably say it was a fog.  Anyway, it was a little crazy busy, so let’s set it aside for a moment to address these amazing stuffed grape leaves instead.

The first time I ever made stuffed grape leaves it was summer and I was out on an island.  Doesn’t that just sound exciting and exotic?  Unfortunately, it was an island in the Boston harbor, not off the coast of Greece or anything.  But actually, apart from that little fact, the whole experience definitely tended toward the exotic side.  I was there for an art encampment that a good friend of mine curates each year.  In an homage to the Homestead Act, groups of artists “stake a claim” on pieces the island for 5 days and “improve” it by creating installations or performances using only what they can carry on their backs or find on the island.  The whole encampment is open to the public for exploration and interaction.  The installations range from a Museum of Island Artifacts (my favorite artifact was the “petrified jellyfish,” which looked suspiciously like sea glass), to an island gamelan, to a trans harbor tin can telephone.

Joel and I were there to be the practical people (translation: make sure that the artists survived camping on an island for 5 days).  This also translated into being the occasional camp cook.  (The first night, on super short notice, we managed to whip up grilled pizzas for 30 over an open fire with a grate.  It was kind of awesome.)  The last night of the encampment we iron-cheffed, in a kind of grand experiment to see what we could create out of everyone’s leftovers and what we could forage.  This is how I wound up stuffing some grape leaves – also some kelp, which I’ll have you know is very, very rubbery – with bruised avocado, sun dried tomatoes, and some very near the borderline of too old goat cheese.  They were actually pretty good.  But, they didn’t inspire me to make grape leaves again, until now.

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