Thursday, May 30, 2013

Lemon Smoothie

I just made a smoothie with orange juice banana yogurt and ice and I threw in a slice of lemon with the rind and a few plums. It was amazing to taste the hint of lemon.

One day I added a tablespoon of peanut butter to the smoothie. It was great.

I made a fantastic smoothie with low-fat buttermilk when I was out of yogurt.

It's a perfect hot day refreshment.

Urban Lobster

Urban Lobster is my new name for chicken wings, or ghetto lobster. I think I like urban lobster better.

Potato Salad

This recipe is a 34 year old favorite. It was in a little yellow cookbook that came with my first Presto pressure cooker. I still have my beloved cooker and I still make this potato salad a few times a year. It is good hot, cold, and luke-warm. Double the recipe - you'll want leftovers. This is always a hit at summer picnics too.

4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
1/2 teaspoon celery seed (optional)
1/4 cup vinegar (I like red wine vinegar)
1/2 cup water
1 large onion, chopped
6 large potatoes diced (red potatoes or Yukon gold are my favorites)
Add a few ribs of chopped celery and raisins if you have them handy.

Add ingredients to cooker, mix well, close cover and cook 5 minutes with pressure regulator rocking gently. Cool cooker at once. If you don't have a pressure cooker I'm sure you can bake this in a Dutch oven or cook it on the stove top in a heavy lidded pot. Save the leftover flavorful seasoned potato stock for adding to cooked beans or using as soup stock.

Heat Panic, Cold Supper

I have heat panic. I have closed the shades and windows to keep last nights cool air trapped inside. Today is going to be hot. I will be baking bread. Don't laugh, dry heat is always better than humidity. I just made pressure cooker potato salad (recipe on this blog) but today I am using my dutch oven instead of my pressure cooker. Did anyone ever tell you dull knives are more dangerous? It's true! The dull knife bounces off the potato or onion and slips, cutting ones finger. I am hard boiling eggs this morning, too. All of this is in time for a cold supper tonight. Stay cool. I might fill the kiddy-pool and sit in it with a good book.

Sufi Proverbs

Grasp the moment; you can’t power a mill with water that has already passed by.

Those that have time and search for a better time will lose time.

Abundance can be had simply by knowingly receiving what has already been given.

Knowledge without its application is like water without wetness.

Never be enslaved to principles.

We are in this world, but not of it.

Behind every adversity lies a hidden possibility.

Bringing joy to one heart with love is better than one thousand repetitive prayer recitings.

Watching someone else eating will not satisfy you hunger; the spiritual experiences of others will not satisfy your yearning.

The treasure of joy is closer to you than you are to yourself—so why should you go searching from door to door?

If you pick up a bee due to kindness, you will learn the limitations of kindness.

There would be no such a thing as counterfeit gold if there weren’t real gold somewhere.

When a pickpocket sees a saint, all he sees are his pockets.

Wise company can also make you wise.

Asking good questions is half of learning.

There is a difference between spending a night with a lover and a night with a toothache.

I searched for God, and found only myself. I searched for myself, and found only God.

A person who seeks God through logical proof is like someone who searches for the sun with a lamp.

-Sufi Proverbs

Linda's Crock Pot Chicken Wings

adapted. . .

12 to 18 chicken wings
1/3 c soy sauce
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 garlic cloves minced
2 green onions minced
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
thinly sliced green onion tops or sesame seeds (optional)


Wash the chicken wings and pat dry. With kitchen shears, cut off wing tips; cut each trimmed wing into two pieces at the joint.
Combine wings and remaining ingredients in slow cooker; cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours. Sprinkle with sesame seeds or sliced green onion tops, if desired. Serves 4 people as an appetizer.


Mystery Bag

I just found a mystery bag
in my hall closet.
I have no idea where it came from!
Inside: Three sun dresses, three skirts,
and a Donegal sweater!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Summer Feast

Last night we grilled eggplant and Cook's Valley grown purple potatoes and grilled our marinated Jamie Sullivan's special pork chops. I sauteed fresh garlic in olive oil and cooked the chopped red stemmed Swiss chard with a dash of red wine and soy sauce and cut corn. COLORFUL!! I chopped the pork chops into scrabble-sized bites and sprinkled them over the Swiss chard mixture. I love vegetables and grains but occasionally I like meat as a spice!

This morning I ate leftover eggplant on toast with oil cured black olives.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Iron Skillet as Baking Stone

I am impressed with the great results of using my greased cast iron skillet a my new loaf-pan. It's better than using a baking stone. The bread stays moist all week. I make a wet dough to begin with but the skillet helps retain the moisture.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Steve Raichlen

I caught this on TV last night and I am ready to make it.
Singapore Beef Sates

Method: Direct Grilling
Serves: 6 as an appetizer; 4 as a light main course.
Preparation: At least 3 hours for marinating the beef. As long as overnight. The longer, the better.
Category: Meat
1-1/2 pounds rib-eye steaks, cut 1/2 inch thick

For the marinade:

3 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 tablespoons ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground turmeric
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1-1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons Asian fish sauce or soy sauce
3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Other Items Needed:
8-inch bamboo skewers; grill shield or aluminum foil (a 12 by 18 inch sheet folded in thirds like a business letter with shiny side out)

Cut each steak, including the fat, into 1 inch strips (each 1/4 inch thick) and place in a nonreactive mixing bowl. Stir in the sugar, coriander, turmeric, cumin, pepper, fish sauce, and vegetable oil. Marinate the beef, covered, in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours and as long as overnight.

Thread the beef strips onto bamboo skewers leaving the bottom half of each skewer exposed as a handle and the top 1/4-inch of the skewer exposed as a point. The recipe can be prepared several hours ahead to this stage.

Set up your grill for direct grilling and preheat to high. Brush and oil the grill grate.

Arrange the sates on the grate, sliding the grill shield or folded foil under the exposed part of the skewers to keep them from burning. Grill until cooked to taste, about 30 seconds to 1 minute per side for medium rare, a little longer for medium. (In general, Southeast Asians eat their sates medium to medium-well.) Serve with Singapore Cucumber Relish and Singapore Peanut Sauce if desired.
Note: the traditional way to eat sate is to skewer a piece of cucumber on the pointed end of the skewer, then dip the sate in the peanut sauce.

Singapore Cucumber Relish
Category: N/A
2 kirby (small) cucumbers or 1 medium cucumber, cut in half lengthwise and seeded
1 small shallot or green onion, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
1 small hot red chile (like a bird or cayenne pepper), seeded and minced
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground black pepper

Cut the cucumbers into 1/4-inch dice. Place the cucumbers, shallot, chile, vinegar, and sugar in a mixing bowl and gently toss to mix. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Singapore Peanut Sauce
Serves: Makes 2 cups
Category: Sauces

5 tablespoons vegetable oil
5 cloves garlic, 2 cloves minced and 3 cloves thinly sliced crosswise
1 shallot, minced
1 stalk lemongrass, trimmed and minced (or 2 strips lemon zest)
1 to 3 small hot chiles, seeded and minced (for hotter peanut sauce, leave the seeds in)
1 tablespoon dried shrimp, minced, or 1 teaspoon fish sauce (optional)
3/4 cup peanut butter
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk or light cream, or as needed
2 tablespoons sugar (or to taste)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice (or to taste)
1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro
Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oil in a wok or saucepan over medium high heat. Add the 2 cloves minced garlic, shallot, lemongrass, chiles, and dried shrimp (if using). Fry until fragrant and lightly browned, 2 minutes.

Stir in the peanut butter, coconut milk, sugar, soy sauce, fish sauce (if using in place of dried shrimp), lime juice, and 3/4 cup water. Reduce heat and gently simmer the sauce until thick but pourable and richly flavored, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the cilantro the last 2 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons oil in a small frying pan. Add the sliced garlic and fry over medium heat until just beginning to brown. Do not burn or the garlic will become bitter. Drain the garlic through a strainer over a heatproof bowl.

Just before serving, stir the fried garlic slices into the sauce. Sauce should be thick but not pasty: add a tablespoon or so of water as needed. Correct the seasoning, adding sugar, salt, and/or pepper to taste.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Holiday Weekend

This morning we enjoyed a long walk with Lily to the pond with our color wheel umbrella. We just went to Cooks Valley Farm and got freshly picked Swiss chard, asparagus, arugula and finger potatoes, from Marilyn. I had to cook the chard and asparagus immediately. They were delicious. Then we went to see our friend Jaime Sullivan and got some gorgeous-looking center cut pork chops and a dozen chicken wings. I made two marinades that are flavoring the meat as I write this. I am incubating a sourdough whole wheat oat cornmeal bread. The neighborhood is quiet cool, gray and drizzly. I love it. I couldn't ask for anything more.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Gotta Laugh

our trash+recycling bins were taken away today
since we owe the city money
over 300 dollars
we are charged as three apartments
gotta laugh
we'll never make it.
our house falls down around us
and the earth is calling
people want to visit me
to see how an artist lives.
are you sure, I ask

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Toast to Toast

I have discovered a few new things lately. When I bake my bread in balls snuggly risen in my greased cast iron skillet, the iron pan acts like a baking stone and the finished loaf stays moist all week. I store the bread in my fridge on humid days otherwise mold takes hold.

Sometimes I hand grind some whole grains and seeds and add them to a base of whole wheat flour.
Wheat, oat, corn, soy, chick pea, lentil, millet, --sunflower, sesame, poppy!

Mix and match. They are all good.

A meal in every bite!

I love farmer's cheese on my toast with freshly ground black pepper--for breakfast. Sometimes I add cinnamon and raisins or fresh sage, scallions or basil from my garden.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Henry Miller

Our own physical body possesses a wisdom, which we who inhabit the body lack. We give it orders, which make no sense.
-Henry Miller

Early Kitchen

I woke at one AM after 4 hours of deep sleep. At 2 I finally got up and fed Lily and Sammy and put dishes away and washed a sink full. Made coffee. Now I am simmering chic peas and I set the bread dough to rise in the empty oven. It is hot and it's 3AM I have three fans going and classical music playing on the radio and Lily at my feet.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Children and Trauma

Traumatic events may be repressed but are not fully forgotten. The child may re-experience the trauma through any of her senses. She may experience vivid and unwelcome flashbacks, often during quiet, unfocused times, such as when bored in class, falling asleep, listening to the radio, or watching television.

In the child’s play or behavior, she will recall and attempt to rework the event. Her drawings and stories may incorporate and reflect the traumatic event(s). Although referred to as “play,” repetitive post-traumatic play is more often grim work. Reliving the event represents an attempt to master fears that continue to haunt or overwhelm the child.

Tragically, trauma shatters the natural sense of invincibility and trust basic to normal childhood. This shakes the child’s confidence about the future and can lead to limited expectations. Traumatized children often have a pessimistic view of career, marriage, having children, and even life expectancy.

Other signs common to children who suffer post-traumatic stress disorder include sleep problems; nightmares; exaggerated startle response; panic; deliberate avoidance of reminders of the trauma; irritability; immature or regressed behavior; and hypervigilance.


My Mother and Mussolini

In Fascist Italy under the regime of Benito Mussolini, castor oil was one of the tools of the Blackshirts. Political dissidents were force-fed large quantities of castor oil by Fascist squads. This technique was said to have been originated by Gabriele D'Annunzio. Victims of this treatment did sometimes die, as the dehydrating effects of the oil-induced diarrhea often complicated the recovery from the nightstick beating they also received along with the castor oil; however, even those victims who survived had to bear the humiliation of the laxative effects resulting from excessive consumption of the oil.

It is said Mussolini's power was backed by "the bludgeon and castor oil"
. In lesser quantities, castor oil was also used as an instrument of intimidation, for example, to discourage civilians or soldiers who would call in sick either in the factory or in the military. Since its healing properties were widely exaggerated, abuse could be easily masked under pretense of a doctor's prescription. It took decades after Mussolini's death before the myth of castor oil as a panacea for a wide range of diseases and medical conditions was totally demystified, as it was also widely administered to pregnant women, elderly or mentally-ill patients in hospitals in the false belief it had no negative side effects.

It was also often used as both a punishment and torture by the Spanish Nationalists, led by Francisco Franco, as they purged Spain of those who supported the democratic, left-wing Republic during the Spanish Civil War.


Setting the Stage

I loathe the suburbs, having grown up in one. To me it was a stage set, and a prison. It was racially and economically filtered, biased, and paranoid. I prefer the city, made up of all ages, all economic levels, multiple ethnicities. I appreciate the real people and eccentrics, and require the daily, direct reminder of life outside the self, outside the castle.

Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome

Munchausen by proxy syndrome (MBPS) is a relatively rare form of child abuse that involves the exaggeration or fabrication of illnesses or symptoms by a primary caretaker.

Also known as "medical child abuse," MBPS was named after Baron von Munchausen, an 18th-century German dignitary known for making up stories about his travels and experiences in order to get attention. "By proxy" indicates that a parent or other adult is fabricating or exaggerating symptoms in a child, not in himself or herself.

Munchausen by proxy syndrome is a mental illness and requires treatment.

About MBPS

In MBPS, an individual — usually a parent or caregiver— causes or fabricates symptoms in a child. The adult deliberately misleads others (particularly medical professionals), and may go as far as to actually cause symptoms in the child through poisoning, medication, or even suffocation. In most cases (85%), the mother is responsible for causing the illness or symptoms.

Typically, the cause is a need for attention and sympathy from doctors, nurses, and other professionals. Some experts believe that it isn't just the attention that's gained from the "illness" of the child that drives this behavior, but also the satisfaction in deceiving individuals who they consider to be more important and powerful than themselves.

Because the parent or caregiver appears to be so caring and attentive, often no one suspects any wrongdoing. Diagnosis is made extremely difficult due to the the ability of the parent or caregiver to manipulate doctors and induce symptoms in their child.

Often, the perpetrator is familiar with the medical profession and knowledgeable about how to induce illness or impairment in the child. Medical personnel often overlook the possibility of MBPS because it goes against the belief that parents and caregivers would never deliberately hurt their child.

Most victims of MBPS are preschoolers (although there have been cases in kids up to 16 years old), and there are equal numbers of boys and girls.

Diagnosing MBPS

Diagnosis is very difficult, but could involve some of the following:

a child who has multiple medical problems that don't respond to treatment or that follow a persistent and puzzling course
physical or laboratory findings that are highly unusual, don't correspond with the child's medical history, or are physically or clinically impossible
short-term symptoms that tend to stop or improve when the victim is not with the perpetrator (for example, when hospitalized)
a parent or caregiver who isn't reassured by "good news" when test results find no medical problems, but continues to believe that the child is ill and may "doctor shop" to find a professional who believes them
a parent or caregiver who appears to be medically knowledgeable or fascinated with medical details or seems to enjoy the hospital environment and attention the sick child receives
a parent or caregiver who's overly supportive and encouraging of the doctor, or one who is angry and demands further intervention, more procedures, second opinions, or transfers to more sophisticated facilities
If you have any concerns about a child you know, it is important to speak to someone at your local child protective services agency — even if you prefer to call in anonymously.

Causes of MBPS

MBPS is a psychiatric condition. In some cases, the perpetrators were themselves abused, physically and/or and sexually, as children. They may have come from families in which being sick was a way to get love.

The parent's or caregiver's own personal needs overcome his or her ability to see the child as a person with feelings and rights, possibly because the parent or caregiver may have grown up being treated like he or she wasn't a person with rights or feelings.

In rare cases, MBPS is not caused by a parent or family member, but by a medical professional (such as a nurse or doctor), who induces illness in a child who is hospitalized for other reasons.

What Happens to the Child?

In the most severe instances, parents or caregivers with MBPS may go to great lengths to make their children sick. When cameras were placed in some children's hospital rooms, some perpetrators were filmed switching medications, injecting kids with urine to cause an infection, or placing drops of blood in urine specimens.

In most cases, hospitalization is required. And because they may be deemed a "medical mystery," hospital stays tend to be longer than usual. Whatever the cause, the child's symptoms — whether created or fabricated — ease or completely disappear when the perpetrator isn't present.

According to experts, common conditions and symptoms that are created or fabricated by parents or caregivers with MBPS can include: failure to thrive, allergies, asthma, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and infections.

The long-term prognosis for these children depends on the degree of damage created by the illness or impairment and the amount of time it takes to recognize and diagnose MBPS. Some extreme cases have been reported in which children developed destructive skeletal changes, limps, mental retardation, brain damage, and blindness from symptoms caused by the parent or caregiver. Often, these children require multiple surgeries, each with the risk for future medical problems.

If the child lives to be old enough to comprehend what's happening, the psychological damage can be significant. The child may come to feel that he or she will only be loved when ill and may, therefore, help the parent try to deceive doctors, using self-abuse to avoid being abandoned. And so, some victims of MBPS are at risk of repeating the cycle of abuse.

Getting Help for the Child

If MBPS is suspected, health care providers are required by law to report their concerns. However, after a parent or caregiver is charged, the child's symptoms may increase as the person who is accused attempts to prove the presence of the illness. If the parent or caregiver repeatedly denies the charges, the child would likely be removed from the home and legal action would be taken on the child's behalf.

In some cases, the parent or caregiver may deny the charges and move to another location, only to continue the behavior. Even if the child is returned to the perpetrator's custody while protective services are involved, the child may continue to be a victim of abuse while the perpetrator avoids treatment and interventions.

Getting Help for the Parent or Caregiver

To get help, the parent or caregiver must admit to the abuse and seek psychological treatment.

But if the perpetrator doesn't admit to the wrongdoing, psychological treatment has little chance of helping the situation. Recognizing MBPS as an illness that has the potential for treatment is one way to give hope to the family in these rare situations.


Jane E. Brody

NYT: Many Fronts in Fighting Obesity

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Forkable Blog

Slow food for fast living.

Dogs, God and Cheesecake!

What more do you need?

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Baked Oatmeal Snack Bars

Baked Oatmeal Snack Bars


1.5 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup chopped walnuts [or any nuts you like]
1/2 cup dried fruit (any you like – raisins, cranberries, dates, figs)
1/4 cup seeds (any you like – sunflower, pumpkin, flax, sesame)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp kosher salt
1.25 cups skim milk
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350*
Mix dry ingredients.
Mix wet ingredients.
Pour wet into dry. Stir to combine.
Pour into a 9×9 baking dish either coated in cooking spray or lined with parchment.
Bake for 40 minutes.
Cut into 9 squares.


Neufchâtel cheese

Gorgeous day. Enjoying my sourdough whole wheat toast with Neufchâtel cheese, raisins, cinnamon, freshly ground black pepper and hot coffee on the side. I love the city. It is quiet today, no backyard mechanics or loud music or lawns to mow - I'm glad for it.
How to make Neufchâtel cheese.

Speak the Truth

Tortured by her imposed regimen of three glasses of heavy mineral oil per day, I would run to the toilet with my mother and younger half-brother trailing after me. She would examine the bowl and say ew gross! The shame and humiliation was beyond belief, but now she fears me! For 35 years I have been unraveling the agonies to find my real self. I am dangerous because I see and speak the truth.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Motivational Sprinkler System

Sprays water at noisy neighbors and tells them to get a life.

Neufchâtel Cheese

Price rite Neuf cheese on thick cut slices of my ww sourdough toast with black pepper cinnamon and raisins glued on. Delicious!

Farmer Cheese

Farmer cheese (also farmer's cheese or farmers' cheese) in American English refers most often to pressed Cottage cheese, an unripened cheese made by adding rennet and bacterial starter to coagulate and acidify milk. Farmer cheese may be made from the milk of cows, sheep or goats, with each giving its own texture and flavor.

During coagulation the mixture separates into curds (solid) and whey (liquid), then the whey is drained off. Further pressing out of the moisture yields the malleable solid results of pot cheese, whilst even more pressing makes farmer cheese, which is solid, dry and crumbly. There are many kinds of farmer cheese worldwide.

In Ghana, farmer's cheese is called wagashi or waagashi. It is made by Fulani women using grass-fed cow milk and Xylopia aethiopica leaves as the curdling agent. Waagashi is fried and eaten with a spicy peanut powder or used as an additive in various soups


Voracious Flexitarian

My new favorite blog: Voracious Flexitarian! And she's a librarian!! A woman after my own heart.
View here.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Gone but not Forgotten

We arrived clutching a loaf of my sourdough whole wheat bread and the hostess, overdressed and sipping champagne, wrapped it up and hid it away. Her husband, the one we know well, was off delivering their teenage daughter to a friend's house. When he returned he offered us a plate of snacks and mixed rum drinks. The wife was sauteing breaded chicken breasts in a stick of butter at the far end of the kitchen, sipping her own bottle of pink champagne. We were clustered at the other end dressed casually like her husband, having our own conversation while munching the salty peanuts, pretzels, salsa and chips. Another couple arrived and we were glad to see them, we'd met them before. We all sat at the dining room table and ate buttery chicken breasts with vinegar-spritzed lettuce and more drinks. For dessert we were each given two chocolate cookies made into an ice cream sandwich. When we got home we crashed. I woke up early the next morning. I stood at my desk working until I had an attack of dizziness, feeling faint from hunger. She had left out the bread!

Roasted, Colorful Cauliflower

I love raw cauliflower, but this is my favorite way to cook it. Chop up the whole cauliflower brain any way you like it - I like cross sections that include the stem. Drizzle with olive oil, salt, pepper and Adobo. Put it in a Pyrex baking dish or a gigantic cast iron frying pan. Place it in a preheated 450-500 oven and roast it! Stir it every 8 to 10 minutes. I smash cloves of garlic and add that too. You can add some red wine vinegar, or balsamic vinegar and soy sauce and make some peanut sauce for dipping-- the options are infinite! I also add red chili pepper flakes, and slices of carrot and a few broccoli florets for color.

Some of My Best Friends are Germs

Some of these compounds may play a role in regulating our stress levels and even temperament: when gut microbes from easygoing, adventurous mice are transplanted into the guts of anxious and timid mice, they become more adventurous. The expression “thinking with your gut” may contain a larger kernel of truth than we thought.

“Fiber is not a single nutrient,” Sonnenburg said, which is why fiber supplements are no magic bullet. “There are hundreds of different polysaccharides” — complex carbohydrates, including fiber — “in plants, and different microbes like to chomp on different ones.” To boost fiber, the food industry added lots of a polysaccharide called inulin to hundreds of products, but that’s just one kind (often derived from the chicory-plant root) and so may only favor a limited number of microbes. I was hearing instead an argument for a variety of whole grains and a diverse diet of plants and vegetables as well as fruits. “The safest way to increase your microbial biodiversity is to eat a variety of polysaccharides,” he said.

His comment chimed with something a gastroenterologist at the University of Pittsburgh told me. “The big problem with the Western diet,” Stephen O’Keefe said, “is that it doesn’t feed the gut, only the upper G I. All the food has been processed to be readily absorbed, leaving nothing for the lower G I. But it turns out that one of the keys to health is fermentation in the large intestine.” And the key to feeding the fermentation in the large intestine is giving it lots of plants with their various types of fiber, including resistant starch (found in bananas, oats, beans); soluble fiber (in onions and other root vegetables, nuts); and insoluble fiber (in whole grains, especially bran, and avocados).
With our diet of swiftly absorbed sugars and fats, we’re eating for one and depriving the trillion of the food they like best: complex carbohydrates and fermentable plant fibers. The byproduct of fermentation is the short-chain fatty acids that nourish the gut barrier and help prevent inflammation. And there are studies suggesting that simply adding plants to a fast-food diet will mitigate its inflammatory effect.


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

the swiss invented it

i made muesli--
the swiss invented it.
raw rolled oats, raisins, and peanuts, and sunflower seeds.
I love it.
can carry it on a walk.
now i can climb swiss alps of woonsocket--
no joke
the hills are lovely and steep
with peter pan views--
into the future.
will cardinal vinny
follow me? I hope so.
i hate to leave a singing friend

Oil Cloth Coasters!

Sew your own!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

8 PM

In the Obama White House,
bedtime is still at 8 PM
I go to bed
with the president.

My Dog and I

My dog and I have been having one meal a day--for her it is best and for me during this severe allergy season, it seems to be going this way. But we do eat biscuits!

Henry David Thoreau

One farmer says to me: 'You cannot live on vegetable foods solely, for it furnishes nothing to make bones with,' walking all the while he talks behind his oxen, who with vegetable-made bones jerk him and his lumbering plow along in spite of every obstacle.

-Henry David Thoreau

Monday, May 13, 2013

DIY Tent


Meatloaf Monday

Today I decided to use what we have on hand to make a big meatloaf. I grated a pound of carrots, added many cups of rolled oats, a pound of ground beef, a few cups of ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, black pepper, Adobo, salt, frozen corn, soy sauce, cumin, oregano, green onions, water, and love. I mixed it by hand and took off a test blob to zap in microwave and adjust seasonings.

DIY Denim Earth Shoes

Surreal moments in the public bathroom stall.

Sur la Table

When I was a child the table was a scary place.
I had stomach aches every day.
I was terrified of eating, pleasing my mother,
having to finish my food.
Bloody cuts of meat scared me.
I hated the harshness of the overhead kitchen light.
I hid my food in bite-sized bits
spit into an unending supply of white paper napkins
stashed under my plate.
My mother would wear lipstick & sunglasses to breakfast.
The scrambled eggs,
were they too bright?
She wore them so we couldn't see
that she had been crying
after a fight with my stepfather.
Usually we were fed by the maid.
Sundays my Grandparents came over from Brighton Beach for brunch.
Grandma brought honey-cake from the Avenue
with potato knishes bagels whitefish and lox!
We stayed at the table all day.
My stepfather was happy and he'd tell stories.
That was when I loved the table.

Lunch Sack

From recycled denim!
View here

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Lauren Agnelli

Of course, I learned how to spell “balalaika” -- how could I ever forget! It’s no secret why we were good at spelling in our house: dad would give us 25 cents (equal nowadays to a few bucks, easy) for correctly spelling stuff like “Worcestershire” sauce. I remember going to the refrigerator door, taking out the Lea & Perrins bottle, and memorizing it.
-Lauren Agnelli, singer-songwriter


Eye of Newt

I made onion bread and have been eating it with freshly ground black pepper on top! I ate this with my sun-dried tomato BBQ chicken green olive corn glop, on toast for breakfast. Yes, I am a witch! Where's my eye of newt with squid?

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Spring Rhubarb

I'm simmering rhubarb sauce!

chop reddish-green rhubarb stems, add water and simmer, add a little bit of sugar or honey. Not too sweet not too tart. You may notice that the oxalic acid tickles your teeth, just like fresh spinach does.

The allergy season is so intense, waking me each morning at 2AM well before the birds. It is a magic time. I love to set up my cooking in the early morning hours and have things incubate and simmer all day, filling the house with good aromas.

Wallet Cooks

Anyone can make a great meal with an ample budget! I call them "wallet cooks". We all know what money can buy! I am much more interested in the ingenuity of resourcefulness; stone soup! Techniques poor immigrants have passed down to each other for years; saving stock, cooking in quantity, making soups from bones, cooking with beans and hearty greens, making noodles and dumplings, never wasting a thing. Authentic kitchen ecology! I love finding those family-run markets in the low rent parts of town, with makeshift beef drying on racks, those dangerous-looking places full of authentic, inexpensive, and interesting ingredients.

Sleep and Longevity

By Kulreet Chaudhary, M.D.

Getting a good night’s sleep is an effortless technique to create longevity and health. Deep rest during the night helps you fight stress, maintain a healthy weight, and keeps your energy levels high. Timing your sleep is like timing an investment in the stock market – it doesn’t matter how much you invest, it matters when you invest.

The deepest and most regenerative sleep occurs between 10 p.m. - 2 a.m. After 2am, your sleep becomes more superficial. If you are not getting the deep, regenerative sleep that occurs between 10 p.m. - 2 a.m., then you may wake up between 2 a.m. – 3 a.m., when the sleep cycle naturally becomes more superficial, and have trouble falling back to sleep. If your body is chronically deprived of the regenerative sleep between 10 p.m. - 2 a.m., then you may still feel fatigued when you wake up in the morning.

You have an internal clock lodged deep within the brain that regulates your sleep – the pineal gland. The pineal gland receives information about the sun through your eyes via the optic nerve. As the sun sets, the pineal gland is able to sense the change in light transmitted through your eyes and it begins to secrete a hormone, melatonin, to prepare your body for sleep.

Exposure to bright light prevents the secretion of melatonin and darkness promotes it. Typically, within one to two hours after the sunset, you will begin to feel drowsy as the melatonin levels rise. This is the body’s signal to go to sleep. By midnight your melatonin levels have peaked and there is a gradual decline in melatonin levels after midnight.

At 10 p.m., your body goes through a transformation following the rise in melatonin production. This transformational phase of sleep is associated with an increase in the “internal” metabolic activity that is responsible for the repair and restoration of your body. A reduction of your mental and physical activity is necessary for this 10 p.m. shift to occur. If you are still awake, the “second wind” phenomenon occurs at 10 p.m. because there is a rise in mental activity and energy at this time. However, the true value of the “second wind” can only be experienced if you are asleep by 10 p.m.

Scientists are just beginning to discover the antioxidant role of melatonin. Your body produces numerous natural antioxidants that prevent cellular and DNA damage, which ultimately causes disease. One of the powerful nocturnal antioxidants produced is melatonin. As you sleep, your body is removing the effects of free radicals that have been produced by stress throughout the day. This natural, nocturnal clean-up crew maintains physical balance without any effort. All you need to do to benefit from this process is to sleep when your pineal gland sends the melatonin signal.

If you are awake past 10 p.m., this process of free radical removal becomes interrupted, and your body’s ability to remove the effects of free radicals is significantly impaired. First of all, most people who stay awake past 10 p.m. are usually working on the computer, watching TV or reading. All of these activities result in an exposure to light and therefore interrupt the production of melatonin. Secondly, the metabolic energy that becomes available at 10 p.m. for the removal of free radicals is expended and now unavailable. It gets dissipated in the “second wind” phenomenon and is lost as mental energy rather than used as metabolic energy for the purpose of removing free radicals. So rather than allowing our bodies to maximize its natural cycle of repair during sleep, we interfere with it. This results in a state of night vigilance where you are alert during the night and groggy during the day. This cycle is extremely harmful to health.

Typically, if you miss the 10 p.m. bedtime, it will take much longer to fall asleep. The quality of sleep will also be less refreshing and there will still be a sense of fatigue in the morning. Even adjusting your bedtime from 11 p.m. to 10 p.m. will make an enormous difference in the quality of your sleep and enhance your feeling of wakefulness the following day. The reason for this is that you are taking advantage of the natural wave of neurochemistry that is already well on its way before 10pm and you get the added support of the metabolic changes that occur at the 10 p.m. mark.

If you are currently falling asleep well past 10 p.m., make it a goal to sleep earlier by 15-30 minutes each week until you hit the 10 p.m. goal. If you are also waking up after 6 a.m., it is important to wake up 15-30 minutes earlier so you feel ready for bed by 10 p.m. If you are having problems with insomnia, there are several things you can do to help reset your sleep cycle:

1. Do not watch TV or work on the computer later than 9 p.m. (ideally 8 p.m.). Both of these activities are stimulating to the mind and significantly impair the secretion of melatonin due to the strong light they emit.

2. Remove the TV from your bedroom. The environment of the bedroom should reflect the activities taking place there – sleep, relaxation and sexual intercourse. Having a TV in the bedroom is counterproductive to all of these activities. Although many people look to television as a way of relaxing, from a neurochemical standpoint, it has a stimulating effect.

3. Watch the sunset daily. Even if you are able to only take a 10-minute walk as the sun is setting, this is a very powerful way to enhance melatonin secretion. Once you are waking up earlier, also watch the first 10 minutes of the sunrise. Your brain is able to differentiate between the setting and rising rays of the sun and initiates a chain of biochemical reactions to support your natural daily cycles. An easy way to prevent jet lag is to watch the sunset and sunrise for the first 24-48 hours in your new destination.

4. Stop drinking caffeine. Caffeine disrupts your natural sleep cycle. Even drinking caffeine in the morning interrupts your sleep because, over time, it causes a chemical shift towards a state of excitation. Caffeine taken in the second half of the day is an even bigger obstacle to deep sleep during the night. Stopping caffeine abruptly can be quite stressful to the nervous system so slowly taper off your caffeine gradually over 4-8 weeks.

5. Eat a small dinner. You now know that your digestion gets weaker as the day progresses. Eating a large dinner interrupts your ability to fall asleep because your body is contending between two different processes – preparing for sleep and restoration versus managing the undigested food in your stomach.

6. Avoid naps during the day until you are able to fall asleep before 10 p.m. If you still need a nap during the day even though you have adjusted your bedtime to before 10 p.m., then a brief nap is okay. If this is predominantly happening after meals, then you need to work on strengthening your digestion. Once your digestion is stronger, you will not feel tired after meals.

7. If you have problems with frequent urination at night, do not drink any liquids after 7 p.m. The liquids you drink are typically processed by the kidneys are ready for excretion within 90 minutes.

8. If you are still having problems sleeping after all of the above recommendations, then you can make an evening milk drink that will aide your sleep: Pour one cup of milk (soy, almond or other milk substitutes are okay for those who do not consume cow’s milk) into a pan and add a pinch of each of the following ingredients: turmeric powder, nutmeg powder and cardamom powder. Add natural sugar if desired for taste.

A. A. Milne

"“When you wake up in the morning, Pooh”, said Piglet at last, “what’s the first thing you say to yourself?” “What’s for Breakfast?” said Pooh. “What do you say, Piglet?” “I say, I wonder what’s going to happen exciting today?” said Piglet. Pooh nodded thoughtfully. “It’s the same thing” he said."

- A. A. Milne, Winnie The Pooh

Glass of Water

Put a pitcher of water on the table and pour a glass once in a while.

Unmarked and Unscented

I decided to defrost all of the unmarked containers in my chest-freezer to discover the contents. Half of the containers were gems. There were two portions of cooked cubed potatoes, which I added to the vegetable soup I was simmering and there were 4 containers of a (still aromatic) greens and smoked ham soup. The other half a dozen containers were unmarked and unscented and the color of beets, so I tossed them.

I took a walk and Lily led me to tour favorite local butcher shop. I tied her out front and she was happy to sit under the shade of the maple tree watching people come and go. I had a visit with Jamie and bought chicken breasts and ground sirloin on sale. When I got home I set up a slow cooker stew with ten-thousand million-year-old-sun-dried tomatoes, corn, carrots, wheat berries, and the chicken. It simmered all night.

The irony is my freezer will fill up again. But this time I will date and label the containers because just like with my clothes closet, I never remember what's inside!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

romancing a poetry robot

smoke a cigarette
sleep with an owl
lick a red shoe
sleep on a chair
put on lipstick
dance naked
white horses dancing

Romancing un robot de poésie
fumer une cigarette
dormir avec un hibou
lécher une chaussure rouge
dormir sur une chaise
mettre du rouge à lèvres
danser nu
chevaux blancs danse

Jon Frankel

Reposted from Last Bender.
Filed under:Blogh,Food — posted by jonfrankel on May 6, 2013 @ 8:29 am


Octopi are not the only eight-armed creatures out there. There are books! This weekend was the spring book sale in Ithaca. I don’t usually go to the spring sale because it is smaller than the one in October, but Saturday morning at 4:55 my eyes popped open. It was a warm night. I thought, what excuse have you got? What? I got out of bed, had breakfast and drove downtown to join the line that had begun forming on Friday evening. I was the 115th person there. Two hours later they let us in. I always go hoping to find that one great unexpected book. There about 200 other people with the same vain hope entering simultaneously. Many of them are book dealers, but many are not. On line we discuss the great finds of the past. Inside everyone is silent, efficient. Into the bag went the books: a 3 volume hardcover edition of Dryden, Berryman’s Dream Songs, the Everyman edition of Rosetti’s poems and translations of Dante and other Italian poets, a pristine hardcover collected Emily Dickenson, A Gaelic Lexicon of Finnegans Wake (a real find; it retails for 45 bucks, and I paid $4.50), a bunch of novels by China Mieville and Colson Whitehead, Marcella Hazan’s Classic Italian Cooking and More Classing Italian Cooking bound in a clean, single volume hardcover (to replace the beautiful, patinated, beat up paperbacks that have filled my kitchen with aromas and friends since the mid-eighties), and Mark Bittman’s book of cooking seafood. I have wanted a fish cookbook for many years now. I hadn’t taken the plunge however until Saturday when there were several choices. Now, I judge a fish cookbook by a single criterion: does it have a recipe for octopus? Bittman’s had several. Boom, sold, for $4.50. It was the first of my considerable catch that I sat down to read, because friends were coming to dinner. Saturday was about perfect. It was Hawaii in the Finger Lakes! 78 degrees and sunny. M had just finished putting in a stone patio next to our vegetable garden. She had set up a table with an umbrella and chairs. The sour cherry tree was in full bloom, as were the peach and pear trees. I ask you, what could gild this lily? Why, a plate of grilled octopus!

Dinner for 9: bruschetta, bread, smoked sausage, fresh grapes and grilled octopus, with rosé wine. Pollock baked with tomato sauce flavoured with some oregano, a salad, and spaghetti. What could be easier?

Marinated grilled octopus is easy. I used Bittman as a guide but did not follow exactly his recipe. Here’s what you do:

1 thawed Octopus (mine was 2 lbs; I should have bought 2!)

2 bay leaves

Boiling water to cover

Place the whole octopus in a pot of boiling water with salt and bay leaves. (You can put some lemon, peppercorns, onion and garlic in the water too). When it returns to the boil lower the heat, cover, and let it simmer for an hour. If it’s smaller it might be done sooner, if it’s larger it will take longer. It is done when it is easily pierced with a knife. Cut off a little piece and chew it. It should be chewy but not tough, not like an eraser. When the octopus is done remove the gelatinous stuff and some of the purple skin from the tentacles and from where the tentacles meet the body, being careful not to remove meat. Cut into large, grillable pieces (like, the tentacles cut in two, and the head sliced).

The Marinade:

Juice of two or three lemons

¼ cup chopped garlic

a good pinch of rosemary

salt and pepper to taste

½ cup of olive oil

Whisk this together and toss the octopus piece in the marinade. It can marinate on the counter while you prepare the rest of dinner. CAUTION: keep out of reach of dogs. Stir occasionally.

Grilling the Octopus

Heat a grill VERY hot. I used a vegetable/seafood grill plate with small holes so it would not fall through the grate. When the grill is blazing hot, toss on the octopus pieces. A great fire will consume them briefly as the olive oil ignites. After a few minutes, when the pieces have charred slightly, turn them and baste with the marinade. Another great conflagration will ensue. Be brave and patient! After the fires have died back, turn and baste until the pieces are nicely charred, not blackened, but with a brown crust and slightly black edges. You know, perfect. Plate and serve with bread, smoked sausages and bruschetta. Get out the rosé, close your eyes and pretend you are in Greece, or Portugal. Or Hawaii!

Pain aux châtaignes

Pain aux châtaignes
''Faites dissoudre l’huile à soupe de sel dans 10 cl d'eau tiède. Incorporez l’eau de farine de blé. Mélangez en ajoutant le reste de farine de blé, la farine de châtaigne l'eau salée et 30 cl d'eau tiède (plus ou moins, si nécessaire). Pétrissez bien la pâte jusqu’à ce qu’elle soit souple et se décolle des parois. Formez une boule, recouvrez-la d’un linge. Laissez lever 3h.
Farinez le pain de travail, retravaillez la pâte. Séparez-la en deux pâtons. Mettez-les sur la plaque du four huilée. Laissez lever encore 1h.
Préchauffez le four à 1h 7/8 (230°). Entaillez les pains en croix. Cuisez-les 10min. Baissez le four à th 6 (180°). Prolongez la cuisson de 30 min. Ces pains peuvent se conserver 2 à 3 jours dans un linge.

Chestnut bread
'' Dissolve oil tablespoon salt in 10 ounces of warm water. Stir water of wheat flour. Mix by adding the remaining flour, chestnut flour salt water and 30 ounces of warm water (more or less, if necessary). Knead the dough well until it is smooth and pulls away from the walls. Form a ball, cover with a cloth. Let rise 3h.
Flour bread work, rework the dough. Divide dough in half. Put them on the plate oiled oven. Let rise again 1h.
Preheat oven to 1 hour 7/8 (230 °). Hack cross buns. Cook 10min. Lower the oven to gas mark 6 (180 °). Cook for 30 min. These rolls can be stored 2-3 days in a cloth.


Love affair avec le français

Love affair avec le français

robots sexy françaises
dîner sur le steak et du vin

J'apprends à lire des sacs de farine
et les étiquettes de beurre d'arachide

Love affair with French

sexy french robots
dine on steak and wine

I learn to read bags of flour
and peanut butter labels

Un Chapeau

i discovered wearing a hat cures my headaches.
don't know much about the medical effects
of hats.
I'm partial to Berets and Cowboy hats

mf 4/30/12

j'ai découvert portant un chapeau cures mes maux de tête.
Je ne sais pas beaucoup sur les effets médicaux
de chapeaux.
Je suis partie à bérets et chapeaux de cowboy

mf 4/30/12

Lettre d'amour à M. Simic

Lettre d'amour à M. Simic,
Monsieur Simic, je suis très inspiré par votre poésie. Je veux vous donner un tableau - comme un cadeau.
Je ne parle pas français, mais une lettre d'amour doit être en français!
Joyeux anniversaire!

Love letter to Mr. Simic,
Dear Mr. Simic I am so inspired by your poetry. I want to give you a painting--as a gift.
I do not speak french but a love letter must be in french!
Happy Birthday!!

Wheel of Rolls

I have this strange need to use things up when I cook. Yesterday there were about 6 miniature onions in the basket so I chopped them up and added them to my sourdough before I shaped it. Then I made little rolls and baked them wedged snugly in my greased cast iron skillet. They came out like a gorgeous honeycomb-wheel. The cast iron acts like a baking stone. I baked them at 450 - until done.

Forgive me I must use the google translate button and see what this post looks like in French! I studied French in college and I wish I could hear it spoken more often. I swoon when I hear it! Occasionally I catch a radio station from Canada. I still have my beloved Random House book of French poetry, a book I bought 28 years ago -- to swoon, the spring I met my husband.

Pardonnez-moi, je dois utiliser le bouton Google Translate et voir ce que ce poste ressemble en français! J'ai étudié le français à l'université et je souhaite que je pourrais entendre parler plus souvent. Je me pâme quand je l'entends! De temps en temps je prends une station de radio du Canada. J'ai toujours aimé mon livre au hasard de la Maison de la poésie française, un livre que j'ai acheté il ya 28 ans - se pâmer, le printemps dernier, j'ai rencontré mon mari.

J'ai ce besoin étrange d'utiliser les choses quand je cuisine. Hier, il y avait environ 6 oignons miniatures dans le panier si j'ai coupé vers le haut et les ai ajoutés à mon levain avant que je ne l'ont façonnée. Puis j'ai fait petits pains cuits au four et les calés confortablement dans mes deux poêlons en fonte graissés. Ils sont sortis comme un magnifique nid d'abeille-roues. La fonte se comporte comme une pierre de cuisson. Je leur ai fait cuire au four à 450 - jusqu'à cuisson complète.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Angela Carter

A day without an argument is like an egg without salt.
—Angela Carter


morning fog

quiet neighborhood
mark blows his nose
on the porch


dug out retired clothes--
not so bad anymore!
a few seams to mend.


Bill came home with two slices of cake
from teacher's appreciation day
carrot and coconut cake with ample frosting on both pieces
we feasted like orphan children!

Providence Elks visit Woonsocket

4 burley Harley guys with embroidered elk
stop at the castle
to picnic outside
sharing a little red table

skip the Harley. I want that vest --emblem--

smooching a poem

smooching a poem
startled by a noise from the kitchen
sourdough bread rising
pushed the lid off the bowl

Steve Sanfield's Haiku

America -
you and
that pizza

Because I have nothing else
I have begun to love
my sorrow.

by the refrigerator light
her bending body
through a new kimono

Days go by
when I do not
speak his name.

If only
I could put an end to
"if only".

limbs entangled
we dream
each others dream

Loons cry
The deeper silence

No fire.
The cat still settles
behind the stove.

No matter what the news
it remains another day
without you.

So silent
you can almost hear
the sun

The naked trees
make it colder
- this autumn moon

There were a few
but on this summer night
only cold memories

this love
a continual revelation
- crocuses in the snow

to shake all morning
because you touched me
- a simple bow

Without a moon
the sea
becomes deeper

Empty woodshed.
Bad back.
Trouble ahead.

Holed up for winter
wondering if anyone
will come.

Not quite cold enough
to build a fire.
Regretting it all morning.

The steaming kettle
my only companion
this winter night.

Cutting the deer
steam rising
in lantern light.

Fifteen kinds of mosquitoes
but they all
sound the same.

Another season
and no one to talk with
about the last.

The loudest sound:
the quail
at dawn.

So cold
even the words

More and more
sure of
less and less.

True eloquence:
the rattlesnake's

Alone in the house
Springtime snow
You everywhere

The first narcissus
and his nose
all stuffed up.

Emptying the piss pot
he notices the moon
pours it on himself.

Sleep on the couch she says
cutting his fantasies
in two.

beginning to masturbate.
Can't recall if he finished.

Cleaning house.
Poems scattered

Love poems
scribbled for one
now sent to another.

That cricket he rescued
from the dishwater
kept him awake all night.

Sends himself
a welcome home card.
It never arrives.

Rain on the roof.
A cricket in the house.
As it is.

Summer mountains:
all the time.

Walking in the rain
seeing everything to be done
when it stops

Hills of buttercups
but with one on the table
their meaning is clear

Birthday Poem

Inside - the laughter of friends.
Outside - the moon & I alone.


from Sierra Song by Steve Sanfield, (Berkeley, Calif.: Tangram Press, 2003). 16 unnumbered pages

a cool breeze
sends my song
back to myself


A Cycle of Hoops* for the First Snow
from Backlog, Tooth of Time Books, 1975

*I call them hoops rather than haiku, because haiku is a Japanese word for a poem usually written according to very specific guidelines. I wanted to step beyond those lines and also add another season—the season of the heart. And further, as Black Elk says, "that is because the Power of the world always worked in circles and everything tries to be round. In the old days when we were a strong and happy people, all our power came to us from the sacred hoop of the nation, and as long as the hoop was unbroken, the people flourished."

Walking this morning
to find the world
covered with white.

The brown grasses
seen afresh
after a night of snow.

Even that junkpile
I meant to put in order
is perfect.

Snapped in two:
that tree I never
should have planted.

On moonlit snow
even my shadow
is cold.

Tracks in the snow:
what happened
while we slept.

The power of snow
to make all things

Doing Dishes

for Sasaki Roshi who taught me how

I'm told there are many, many people
who have an aversion to doing dishes.
I am not to be counted among them.
It is an activity I love dearly.
It is a joy, a delight, a true pleasure.
It goes beyond the sensuousness of
immersing my hands in warm, soapy water
particularly on cold winter mornings.

First of all, unlike most activities in my life,
it has a clear beginning and end.
Secondly, I'm certain I do it
as well as anybody else.
And finally, I think, it makes the world
just a tiny bit more beautiful.

-Steve Sanfield, Tangram

Johnny Cash

I love weather. I'm a connoisseur of weather. Wherever my travels take me, the first thing I do is turn on the weather channel and see what's going on, what's coming. I like to know about regional weather patterns, how storms are created in different altitudes, what kinds of clouds are forming or dissipating or blowing through, where the winds are coming from, where they've been. That's not a passion everybody shares, I know, but I don't believe there are any people on earth who, properly sheltered, don't feel the peace inside a summer rain and the cleansing it brings, the renewal of the earth in its aftermath.
-Johnny Cash


smooching a poem
startled by a noise from the kitchen
sourdough bread rising
pushed the lid off the bowl

rain-soaked dresses
hanging on the line

simmering a crazy vat of soup

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Glimpse Of Something In The Oven

Childhood is like a kitchen. It is dangerous
To the mice, but the husband gets fed; he's
An old giant, grumbling and smelling children.
The kitchen is a place where you get smaller

And smaller, or you lose track. In general
You become preoccupied with this old lady
In the kitchen... She putters about, opens oven doors.
The thing is the old woman won't discuss anything.

The giant will. He's always been a fan of Aristotle,
Knew him at school. It is no surprise to him
That the Trojan War lasted ten years, or how it
Ended. he knows something you don't.

Your sister says, "Say what's that in the oven?"

-Robert Bly, Morning Poems

Monday, May 6, 2013

Food Blog Photog

Every once in a while I encounter an amazing food photographer working in the blogosphere. Have a look at this one! I don't think she realizes how talented and amazing her work is! Not many people have such an eye for color and composition and content!! Food magazine and cookbook publishers should find her fast!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Teach Me!

Teach Me!

when I came into this world
I needed compassionate sisters,
a mother
to teach me how to shave my legs,
insert a tampon,
pick a zit,
buy a poem,
start a car,
dress for dinner.

Instead I learned how to run away,
sleep on the floor with my boots on,
use other people's toothbrushes,
ride subways at midnight,
live on air -
I wanted to be Bob Dylan.


quand je suis venu dans ce monde
J'avais besoin sœurs de compassion,
une mère
pour m'apprendre à me raser les jambes,
insérer un tampon,
choisir un zit,
acheter un poème,
démarrer une voiture,
s'habiller pour le dîner.

Au lieu de cela, j'ai appris à fuir,
dormir sur le sol avec mes bottes,
utiliser les brosses à dents des autres,
rouler les métros à minuit,
vivre de l'air -
Je voulais être Bob Dylan.

Virtue Calories

My gentle-reminder-pants are a little too descriptive for my shy nature. So I wear my big shirt that hangs down to my knees, like the women of India. It's a private matter between me and my tuchas. I'd rather have the extra pounds from SOUL FOOD while doing my art than be a skeletal "social X-RAY" and not be doing my art.

Today while picking up empty potato chip bags, donut-boxes, soda and beer cans, Reese's and Hershey's wrappers, littering my street, I thought of all of the calories I avoided while accumulating virtue calories!

Calories Virtue
Ma douce-rappel-pantalon est un peu trop descriptif pour ma nature timide. Donc, je porte ma grande chemise qui pend sur mes genoux, comme les femmes de l'Inde. C'est une affaire privée entre moi et mes tuchas. Je préfère avoir des kilos en trop de soul food tout en faisant mon art que d'être un squelette "social X-Ray" et ne pas être à faire mon art.

Aujourd'hui, tout en ramassant des pommes de terre vides sacs de croustilles, beignet-boxes, de la soude et de la bière en canettes, Reese et des emballages de Hershey, jonchent ma rue, j'ai pensé à toutes les calories J'évitais tout en accumulant des calories de la vertu!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

S'il vous plaît, Pas de gongs!

Nous sommes dans le camp d'été sans l'été ou le camp -
ou peut-être c'est une retraite d'écriture sans reculer!
ou une retraite spirituelle sans la robe et de l'encens et des gongs.

s'il vous plaît, pas de gongs!

Je me suis réveillé avec les quatre heures d'alarme de Bill avec le plus de maux de tête sévères d'allergie -
est resté au lit en espérant qu'il s'en aille.

Quand j'ai ouvert le rideau à 5h du matin, je bâillonné de la lumière émergente.
sans blague

Je descendis.

Le projet de loi était à son bureau
Je me suis excusé et éteint toutes les lumières
mais je me suis tourné sur la cafetière pré chargé
a pris tous les sinus et de la médecine des maux de tête
avec une banane

assis sur un tabouret de cuisine dans le noir

monta à lire l'almanach de Writer.

tête toujours blessé,
mettre sur mon sweat-shirt.
ressenti restrictive

banane vomi
pain grillé puis fait dans l'obscurité
commencer à se sentir mieux.

vu ma vie défiler devant mes yeux.
santé est la richesse.

Glad je ne suis pas Anne Boleyn, seconde épouse du roi Henri VIII d'Angleterre même si une décapitation est une option pour guérir un mal de tête.

dans mon studio était une raquette
des oiseaux

fenêtre ouverte
Je les entends tous.

Please, No Gongs!

We are in summer camp without the summer or the camp--
or perhaps its a writing retreat without retreating!
or a spiritual retreat without the robes and incense and gongs.

please, no gongs!

Woke with Bill's alarm 4AM with the most severe allergy headache--
stayed in bed hoping it would go away.

When I opened the curtain at 5AM, I gagged from the emerging light.
no joke

I went downstairs.

Bill was at his desk
I apologized and turned off all of the lights
but I turned on the pre loaded coffeepot
took all the sinus and headache medicine
with a banana

sat on kitchen stool in the dark

went up to read Writer's Almanac.

head still hurt,
put on my sweatshirt.
felt restrictive
tore it off,

vomited banana
then made toast in the dark
starting to feel better.

saw my life flash before my eyes.
health is wealth.

Glad I am not Anne Boleyn -second wife of England's King Henry VIII although a beheading is one option to cure a headache.

in my studio was a racket
of birds

window open
I hear them all.

Pain de Viande à la Dinde

The first time I went to Canada it was a day trip 20 years ago. We just drove over the border from Newport Vermont (didn't need a passport then) and stopped at a diner. We went inside and there were two guys playing checkers. There was a blackboard with the words Pain de Viande scrawled on it. I knew 'pain' was bread and 'viande' was meat. I thought for a moment, then cried out "MEATLOAF!" I was so excited. I don't think we stayed long. We took our two big dogs for a walk. We went to a supermarket and admired the local produce and the signs in French. I bought peanut butter for its French labeling and headed home.
3 oignons hachés
2 haché poivrons rouges ou rouge cubanelle poivrons (la couleur est importante)
2-3 branches de céleri hachées
1-5 gousses d'ail
Adobo assaisonnement
Worcestershire sauce
poivre noir moulu
viande de dinde hachée
flocons d'avoine
maïs surgelé
eau ou de bouillon pour humidifier

faire revenir les légumes et les combiner avec de l'avoine et de la viande, faire cuire dans un monticule sur une poêle en fonte ou un moule à pain pendant 50-60 minutes (350 F temps)

3 onions chopped
2 chopped red bell peppers or red cubanelle peppers (color is important)
2-3 stalks of celery chopped
1-5 cloves of garlic
Adobo seasoning
sauce Worcestershire
freshly ground black pepper
ground turkey meat
rolled oats
frozen corn
water or stock to moisten
poivre noir moulu

saute veggies and combine with oats and meat, bake in a mound on a cast iron skillet or loaf pan at 350 for 50-60 minutes

Fantasy Passport

I am hoping to get a passport someday so I can go with Francine and speak French in Canada. I have never had a passport. I wish I could just 'make one' like Saul Steinberg did. Hmm maybe I should! What would be on it?
A recipe for my sourdough bread,
a photo of Bill
a photo of my dog Lily,
and Sammy-cat,
and me.
and a picture of my house.
And a photo of Woonsocket
and a photo of a cup of coffee. (just in case I get too shy to speak)
And a drawing!

Swiss Alps

Before our evergreen bushes grew last summer to cover two thirds of our picture window we used to have a view of the drooping baseball nets from our kitchen table. I call them the Swiss Alps since the droops escalate to pointy peaks. My craving yesterday for a lunch of raw oats and raisins and sunflower seeds was apparently very Swiss. They eat this and call it muesli.

I love to invent something and after I've eaten it, I'll "Google it" to see if there's such a recipe eaten by another human on this planet. I am such a monkey. Hello fellow monkeys it's me. Is there anyone out there having this for lunch too?

When I was a child I figured with so many people on this planet there must be another Emily dressed exactly like me doing the same things at this very moment, even thinking the same thoughts, wearing these same purple socks.

By the way I had no idea the Swiss put coffee and milk in the muesli. That certainly saves an extra dish to wash, though I love to wash dishes. But I'll save that chat for another day.

Good Housekeeping

Good Housekeeping magazine went on sale for the first time on this day in 1885, offering housekeeping tips, parenting advice, product reviews, and fiction.

In 1900, the magazine developed the Good Housekeeping Experiment Station to test and evaluate consumer goods and foods for the benefit of the magazine's readers. Products that passed the magazine's standards were given the "Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval," and anyone who wasn't satisfied by one of the approved and advertised products could obtain a full refund. In a time before any regulatory or consumer protection agencies, the Experiment Station performed an important public service, and its tests raised concerns about smoking, overeating, and preservatives before anyone else.

Was there a Sir to Sin with?

Was there a sir to sin with?
The evening was a blur to begin with.
-David Lehman

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Food Journal

Food journals are a great way to shine a light on your eating habits even if you don't reread what you wrote. Keep a small memo pad and a pen, on your kitchen counter or next to the fridge. Write the time and date and the food that you eat. Include beverages. Don't judge! Call it a "poem for science" if it helps distance yourself. You will discover things over time.

Dry Snack

1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/2 cup raisins
dash of kosher salt

Letters of Complaint

Memory: My mother used to write letters of complaint and hate to everyone; us kids, our teachers, you name it. Once she wrote a letter to General Mills or somebody complaining about finding dead bugs in her dried cereal. This was back in the 60's when the rat hairs in candy bars scare was happening. She received a huge care package with a note of apology from the company. She was as ecstatic as a 4-year-old at Christmas, bragging, telling everyone of her delight. She quickly began another letter. Dear. . . I just received a package of. . .

I was reading about Joe Orton and found this and it all came back to me.

Flat 4,
25, Noel Road,
London, N.1

30th April 1965.

Dear Sir,

I recently purchased a tin of Morton's blackcurrant pie filling. It was delicious. Choc-full of rich fruit. Then, wishing to try another variety, I came upon Smedley's raspberry pie filling. And I tried that. And really! How can you call such stuff pie filling? There wasn't a raspberry in it. I was very disappointed after trying Morton's blackcurrant.

Please try to do better in future. And what on earth is `EDIBLE STARCH' and 'LOCUST BEAN GUM'? If that is what you put into your pie fillings I'm not surprised at the result.

I shan't try any more of your pie fillings until the fruit content is considerably higher. My stomach really turned at what I saw when I opened the tin.

Yours sincerely,

Edna Weithorpe (Mrs)