Saturday, July 23

rainbowties.

AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!
i'm guilty, guys.
i am.
guilty as sin.
y'know?
oh.
i'll confess:
i'm guilty of being a total sucker for sexxxy macaroni, man!!!
hahahaha.
duders,
i got some five color farfalle bowtie jauns,
and they were too damned cute to ignore,
and almost too damned cute to actually eat.
......almost.
when my little italian marinaras are in the building,
they always request specific delicious dishes,
which is flattering, to say the least.
and when fun vacation dad is in his expert element,
AND there's adorable pasta in the offering?
good things abound and the al dente toothsome tastes
teem across our tongues.
check the fresh-to-farfalle-type teleport:

kaPOW-WOW-WOW!!!
orange, green, white, red, AND yellow!!!!
hello!!!
we got great northern white beans,
we got big sliced-up stewed tomatoes in juice,
we got bouillon, onions, garlic forever,
fresh picked oregano, greek oregano, and basil,
nootch, white wine vinegar, bay leaves, GPOP, salt and pepper,
and whole lot of good intentions, warm wishes, and positive vibes.
family togetherness is my favorite,
and family-style family dinner reflects it.
garnished with parsley sprankles,
and activated with a sprig of oregano flower buds,
good lookin' food sets the example to these teens, y'feel me?
they gotta learn about how really real participants get into it,
when it's time for the gettin' after it to really get going...
*
food is the central focus around which we plan our days.
yeah,
we have a whole lot of time in between each feast,
and there's a holy sh!tload of stuff that gets stuffed
into every second of those spans-
but when we all come together, it's the very best part,
each and every time.
our first family dinner was a success.
that's positive.
our first family breakfast is about to pop off, too.
mmhmmm.
there are super-puffy double-flake buttery cinnamon rolls
baking right this very moment.
i'm excited.
we're excited.
there's fresh bread cooling on the rack,
there's buns looking for a heavy glaze,
and there's this whole houseful of good people here with me.
it smells great,
and feels better;
never quiet, never soft.....

toasty.

TOASTED OATS and TOASTED COCONUT!!!
wooooooooooooooo!!
duders,
the toasty roasting is the way and the light and the glory
unto all this cookie-makin' mountaintop masterwork.
yup.
masterclass maxxximum enrichment of the inner hidden hot fire
is how i'm doo-dooin' my freaky-diki sh!t in these ovens.
believe it.
neighbors,
i'm on some new new:
toasting the rolled oats???
you can totally taste the burly, burlesque risque sass that a little
high heat activation imbues in those flattened groats.
i'm serious.
the whole world is wide open all of a sudden,
as the coconut browns, and the oatmeal warms the F* up,
and the cookie game goes right up to eleven,
like a mutha-'ucking rocketship!!
WORD.
check the rustic-type teleport:

what's the term we want to use right now?
oh.
right...........it's expert.
i used big raw sugar crystals in there,
and they got all melty among the oats and coconut,
and that got things moving and shaking in al the right ways.
guys,
you wanna make some of these?
ok.
it goes a little something like this:
-
1 stick of vegany butterishness
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 cup vegan creamchee' (!!!)
~almost~ 1 cup of raw sugar
2 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup applesauce
1 cup toasted coconut
1 cup toasted rolled oats
.5 cup ground coconut
.5 cup oatflour
2 cups a.p. flour
1 tsp each bakey kapow and soda
-
the creamchee' really fluffed these effers up.
it tends to do that, as it expands when baked.
i creamed it and the sugar and the butts and teh salt and the vanilla,
and added the applesauce after,
before i really turned it out,
and fired in the toasty bits and everything else.
i gave 'em 12 minutes in a 375F oven,
and that was all she wrote......ALMOST.
that is obvioulsy not where the story ended.
no way.
rules is rules,
and too much is the right amount.
which is why i pressed each cookie flattish first,
and dipped every one of 'em in miniature dark chocolate chip sprankles.
c'mon.
chocochipz are good IN cookies,
but they aren't exactly lacing when they're allowed to get loud ON 'em, either.
mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
c is for cookies,
but cookies are an A+ all up in this place.
*
softish, succulent, rich roasty toasty comforting BIG flavor,
in single service circles.
we ate them in advance of dinner the other night.
yup.
you guys ever have cookie appetizers?
you need that.
chee'cake dessert, and cookie pre-dinner dessert, and dumps on our faces in between?
when it's time to get busy,
fewer are busier than this hive of hot fire hornets.
we make bees weak in their knees, nerds.
***********
harvest and maple are here now.
like,
in the house................asleep.
awwwww.
early rising is apparently the exclusive province of warrior poets,
and pretty princesses and dirty dumb dogs have all opted to remain abed.
jeez.
i've already been blogging,
and i baked a big sloppy loaf of bread,
and ate breakfast,
and started a batch of ooey, gooey, crusty cinnamon rolls,
which will be ready and glazed with frosty icy icing upon their awakening.
....that's right.
i'm likely not the world's best dad,
but,
i'm certainly the most bakin'est boy on the block.
we're together, and that's the most important part;
there's incredible food,
which is a close second.
i'm psyched on family togetherness,
and i'm grateful for the time we have ahead of us.
it's ALL really happening,
even when those lazy babies are sleeping right through it;
never  quiet, never soft.....

steak-out

herbity-herb crusts are a pretty reliable combination of crucial components,
and when there's dinnertime constraints on the time portion of the preparation?
a little cornstarch, coupled with some key ingredients,
can really upgrade a meal into something special.
mmhmmm.
neighbors,
on thursday night,
i was still riding high on the dumpling scene,
with wriggly ropes of noodoo salad slithering on the periphery.
i wanted more of that,
but,
i'd already eaten it all-
i had no choice but to move on, and make something new.
i mean,
i'm not gonna chump out and sit out a meal time.
so,
i fried up some garlic, and seared some asparagus in olive oil,
and let those two get to know each other better;
and i shredded the holy sh!t out of a pair of cabbages,
added parsley and pea tendrils,
a scoop of vegenaise, black pepper, and lemon juice,
for a very mellow, very satisfying crawnchy cole-style slaw on the side.
that's not the herb-crustiness i'm talking about though, duders.
nope.
check the teleport:

there it is!
a stack of seitan seaks, rubbed down and fried up,
in smoked paprika, hot paprika, GPOP, smoked sea salt, pepper,
toasted sesame sossamons, and a little pinch of cayenne.
the base floury stuff is corn starch, like i said earlier,
and it held it all together something fierce.
guys!
seitan steaks, tho!!
i'm sayin',
they're thick, they're crazy juicy, they're crispy on the outside,
and they're covered in grilled leeks.
word.
I LOVE LEEKS.
green oniony mild and masterful understated great rings of thin-strippin' tastiness
are basically what i want to be happening most of the time.
...that's the truth.
what's up with all those sweet little tomatoes?
their job is to keep coolin' it off, man.
besides, rainbow colors make tastier plates.
rules is rules,
and ugly food is not invited over here.
i'll stay old and busted, but the nourishment game has to steady represent
the new hottness forever and ever.
on the ones,
once you go rainbow vegan splendor,
everything else is total bullsh!t.
*
not the most labor intensive meal i've ever made;
yet, it was one of the tastier solutions to the time-sensitive light-out
night-encroaching limits of evening repast blastin'.
it's cool, kids. \
be it eleven minutes or eleven hours-
it takes as long as it takes to get expert on all the things we get into
here in the woodsly goodness,
and especially within the worthy walls of my Folk Life & Liberty Fortress.
behind closed doors,
i'm gettin' it.
and then, of course, i'm presenting through digital electric binary bobotronics
to you and everyone you know.
the thing about that is-
you're a part and party to it,
but you apart from the party of it.
i miss you, or, i'd like to,
but i might not even know you yet.
it's all really happening,
and you're more than welcome to participate.
cooking and eating and sharing are the path, man.
it's clearly marked, and the route isn't all that arduous.
i'm here.
we're here.
we're doing what we do,
and there's always room for MORE;
never quiet, never soft.....

Friday, July 22

rushing.

in less than an hour,
i'm on the road.
uh-huh.
headed south for a meet-up/pick-up/peel-out like 1-2-3.
i've got lots to talk about,
but no time to type.
i'll make it quick, and i'll make it outta here on schedule.
ugh.
maybe if i hadn't stopped to mix up some sourdough white,
and knead it into the future, i'd have had more time?
i dunno.
good bread is essential to good times,
so there's that.
even if my face is pinched, and my nerves are wracked by the hourglass
leaking sand into the bottom-half.
i mean,
really,
when an hourglass is half full, but it's the low-end?
essentially, it's empty, right?
yikes.
that's rough.
but,
today is the day.
yeah.
this is it.
my children, harvest and maple,
are coming back up to the woodsly goodness,
to hang out for a few weeks in the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
and really make some superfresh family togtherness explode into being!!
meanwhile, i'm trying to ge the high-hydration ratio
of a nearly-by-eye estimated dough into a stable matrix,
so it'll be explosively expert when it hits the oven at this time tomorrow.
ha.
planning ahead makes the best foot fall far further forward
than just making the best of whatever happens to happen.
i've got a huge appointment at the studio today,
so it's gonna be a brutal roundtrip roundhouse kick to the front of my pants,
as i fly by the seat of 'em down and up and into the shop.
daaaaaaamn.
good thing i know there's still chee'cake waiting for me!!
yuuuuup.
check the teleport:

LEMON ON LEMON ON LEON ON  LEMON!!!
too much is the right amount,
and that's the only way to activate a proper treat.
real talk.
i've got swedish-style lemon snap cookie crumb crust on the bottom,
buttery, lemon juicy, lemon extracted, and kissed with coconut and vanilla-
the two-tone tiered creamy chee' cake middle is the TRUTH, too.
a full pressed silken tofu brick,
one and a half vegan creamchee' tubs,
a generous 1/3 cup of kapowdered sugar,
3 T flour
3 T arrowroot
3 T tapioca
lemon zest, lemon juice, vanilla, lemon extract,
and all the love in my whole heart went into the food processor,
and that's what came out.
i reserved half, and yellowed up the other,
so i could have that exxxtra-sexxxy look to the thing.
i'm just sayin'-
if you CAN eat pretty food,
you probably should.
i baked the crust for ten minutes,
and i added the filling, and fired it back in the oven for another 33 minutes.
that's the standard 350F setup,
which seems to work pretty dang well.
when it was cool enough to eff with, i had to decorate those jauns.
with what?
how about three rings of lemon-juiced lemon-extracted frosting?
mmmhmmmm
i doo-do that zingy zizzle-zazzle sh!t, neighbors.
why wouldn't i take it to eleven?
seriously.
lemon zest sprankles??
OBviously.
i want all the cool and creamy hottness,
and i'll NEED those nuances when i arrive at work later.
on the ones,
a rip-roarin' ragnarokin' wedge of that stuff is gonna have to recharge my reserves
so i can pound away on my tattoo game for the remains of the day,
leading up to dinnertime and family time and better and better times.
*
i've got showers to take, moves to make,
and dough to fold over in the hopes of forming elaborate gluten chains.
i'm out of time,
but i thank you for spending yours here for a minute;
never quiet, never soft.....

Thursday, July 21

cooperation.

team spirit?
that's never been my strongest suit.
cooperative collaboration, bordering on opportunism?
well now,
that's more like it.
last night travis came over.
yeah.
from @vegan_magic_time.
and he brought a bunch of fresh vegetables right along with him.
that dude ran 100 miles on saturday!
yet,
here he was on wednesday ready to rock out on some expert dinner
as if he'd just casually strolled a bit a few days earlier.
that's pretty effin' tough.
so we couldn't out any mincey, minky b!tchbaggery on the stove.
nope.
not in the face of such tough stuff,
because, i mean, there's no such thing as weak-sauce wednesday.
that sort of poop isn't invited to MY dinner parties.
instead, we had some collaborative cooperation,
and the results were impressive.
neighbors,
check the teleport, then we'll discuss the details:

ka-ba-da-BOOOOOOM!!!!!
c'mon, man.
that's what's up.
y'feelin' it?
i sure hope so, or else you might be dead inside.
*

travis made some fresh ginger-carrot sesame sexxxiness,
with soy and garlic and rice wine vinegar, and whatever else he had poppin',
plus, i noticed some sriracha and stuff slippin' in while it marinated-
that fancy dressing got tossed up in a tasty batch of cold rice noodle salad!
yellow sweet tomatoes, orange bell pepper strips, cucumber discs,
and those fat flat noodz.
...i contributed a secret crawnchy surprise to the equation-
popped quinoa with toasted cracked black pepper, in a baby bit of olive oil.
you got that?
quinoa-pepper-pop sprankles!!!
daaaaamn!
that's bangkok noodle salad, and it's expert.
*
how about those sesame oil seared, seitan-broth braised,
BIG-garlic-slice activated green beans??!!?!?!
yeah!!!
guys,
when you've got access to the sexxxiness,
and the ingredients have all but picked themselves,
there's really nothing for it but to allow events
to unfold along a predestined path of perfection.
sossamon sprankles aren't for the wimpy ones...
and when they're toasted up right,
they'll take an already awesome meal, and turn it right on up to eleven.
no joke.
*
szechuan coconut tofu?
you'd better be ready to be rocked out of your socks, kids.
i got sauces for days, duders, and this meal had nothing but stand-outs.
like an all-star supergroup of dippable, drippable, drizzlin' sizzlers.
sriracha, garlic, GPOP, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, smoked paprika,
cumin, hot paprika, black pepper, cayenne pepper, garlic oil, and ho' sauce-
dumped down on a two-side dry fried exxxtrasuperfirm tofu cube situation,
with onions and coconut shreds factoring heavily on the fringes.
those jauns got garnished with freshie-fresh basil, cilantro,
and of course, coconut sprankles.
why?
because too much is the right amount.
obvi.
jeez.
rules is rules, fools;
and it's not doing it right we believe in.
it's OVERdoing even righter!
hahaha.
*
lastly,
but somewhat more impressively, and perhaps most importantly,
there's that parcel of time consuming pouches
packed with pure dark-side lightning-striking force-choking POWER!
friends, just to step up our shark-gluttony,
we made DUMPS ON YOUR FACE!!!!
yep.
dumplings are dope, and delicious, and deviously distracting-
they look so simple, but they take so long.
2:1 flour/warm water ratio, with salt,
plus way more flour for dusting that sticky stuff
once it's mixed, and rolled.
really,
it's basically getting two more dumplings out of the dough,
all things considered,
just from all the exxtra added non-stick insurance on the boards.
expert.
these jammers have a whole new world of filling within.
onion, garlic, and shredded housemade seitan,
plus, seitan-broth blanched sweet potatoes and crushed carrot,
with tamari and rice wine and liquid smoke thrown into the mix.
what. the. actual. F*. have i even been doing with my life until now??
a wider world of dumpy plumpin' has me pumped to make MORE FOOD.
huh?
oh.
i almost forgot.
TWO sauces, and scallion sprankles complete the look.
yuuuuuuup.
sriracha chili-garlic sesame soy stuff,
spicy,
but not distractingly so...
...and a marginally more traditional soy-ginger-mustard-garlic joint.
i mean, it's not complicated, but it's delicious-
GPOP, powdered sugar, a drop of sesame oil, crushed garlic, grated fresh ginger,
ground mustard seed, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, and scallions,
married in a muddled mass, and left to activate while everything else got prepped.
what was the best?
there were too many standout superstar servings,
and you know i had to freehand a whole lot of extras while i was at it.
we had life-is-short dessert-first cookies,
and we also had dessert-is-important cake, too.
if you weren't in the know about dessert appetizers,
you're welcome.
*

hanging out with vegans is about a billion times better
than hanging out with everyone else.
why?
because they get it, AND they do it.
folks who know and choose to ignore the hottness of a conscientious, conscious,
compassionate, considerate, capable, culpable, cogent kind of life,
but still choose to skimp out on the BIG action?
basically,
that's worse than the dimbulbs and doo-doo-butts who couldn't be bothered
to learn about what might matter in the world outside their immediate convenience.
free will used to discard and disregard a prime tenet of identity,
and reason, and infinite nature?
A is A, you mutha-'ucks.
get after it, get with it, and get on it.
that's why hanging out with vegans is almost always a more enjoyable experience.
it's not just about big dreaming it, kids, it's about being it.
real talk.
but that's just my own self-satisfied vegan opinion!!!
so,
knowing that there are equal contributors present,
and professional appreciators attending,
and active participants interacting with righteousness,
right in my kitchen, right alongside me?
it's great.
also,
it makes me want to try even harder to achieve even better things-
and it takes the mealtime solidarity up a whole notch, or maybe even two.
i am grateful for these select few and very special folks who've spanned
time alongside us here in the Folk Life & Liberty fortress.
time isn't for wasting, it's for investing-
and i'm witnessing many happy returns on those whom i've banked on;
never quiet, never soft.....

Wednesday, July 20

estoy bien.

guys,
you know what yesterday was, right?
uh-huh.
once again,
me and ampy-d had to have a little somethin' somethin' that was
alliteratively appropriate to the weekday dinner scene...
duders,
c'mon,
it's never just tuesday IS it?
no way.
it's only ever acceptable when you give it the due and proper respect
of the honorific: it's mutha-flippin' TACO TUESDAY!!!
and the terrible tinieblas quite simply can't compete
with that bright bright bright sunshiny hottness folded over,
and turbo-fresh-to-death on our plates.
that's no joke.
this time around?
we went for spicy.
mmhmmm.
picante excelente is the way of the future,
and we're not about to keep living in the past, if you feel me...
check the muy-mucho-mas-type teleporte':

that's the NOISE right there, neighbors.
yup.
loud, fresh, and soft-shelled-
because the crawnchy jauns are what poor people do.
hahahah.
stop it.
don't let my firmly entrenched, ingrained, and embedded innate avoidance
of hard corn crap crisps detract from the floury circles of sexxiness, tho.
they were SO good.
i made a little batch of very garlicky, very jalapenified slasa fresca,
and ampy-d took care of the fiesta rainbow guacamole,
so there were ample opportunities for thickness to emerge on top.
nootch-boosted buttery refried beans, with onion, jalapeno, and garlic,
plus that GPOP-rockin' nutrient-rich ho'sauce-upgraded activation,
because that is the lady's favorite part;
i had to hook those up, in the spirit of teamwork an' that.
...oh,
so you wanna know about that tofu?
ok.
smoky, thick crisp teeny cubes of crucial taste and texture-
packed with regular and smoked paprika, toasted cumin, oregano,
fried tomatillo and vidalia onion,
nootch, GPOP, black pepper, cayenne, liquid smoke and a splishy-splash of soy.
it's got an afterburn that pleasantly piques the palate, and i like that sort of tingle.
i do.
three sisters-style succotash hash?
don't mind if i do.
red onion and red pepper, tossed with grilled corn, black beans,
and fried summery squashes,
for a tres hermanas magical bruja brand of sorcery that transcends any one element!!
yum.
friends,
i like to freak it off,
and those pluots did the trick.
fruit on tacos is expert,
especially with a sour cream cilantro garlic lime sauce!
tomatoes, scallions, cilantro, baby spinach, red lettuce, AND pea shoots
all played their roles to perfection,
and a few lime wedges really dressed the dish up right.
you know the rules, man-
too much is the right amount.
anything else is disrespectful to the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
and to the feats of feasting i've come to appreciate as a matter of fact.
*
good food makes for good times,
and spanning time in the presence of picturesque presentation is good for you.
that's the truth.
there's a system in place, whether or not you choose to see it.
gratitude and generosity;
active participation and professional appreciation;
spirit and memory;
high definition super stereo surround, bass-boosted and barbarian battle-blasted-
these are the tenets that define my daily doings,
and that's the way i'm going to continue to immerse myself in my life.
dinner is just one aspect, kiddo.
it's ALL really happening,
and there's NO time for wasting,
only for tasting and testing and striving towards being the best version
of your potential self.
look,
there's full moon magnetism, and werewolfen wherewithal
pulling from without and within,
and there're tough times, long nights, hard styles, and rough treatment
all around all of us trying to chart a coarse course through tight spots and deep waters.
here's the thing, though-
nature wins.
each and every time.
infinite nature is just an extension of mama nature,
so i s'pose it makes more sense to stop fighting the berserker animorphic
metabolic alchemy of taut tendons and temper tantrums,
and follow the rhythm into a synced steady hard-style pounding drum/heart/breakbeat.
y'know?
no?
stop thinking, and start activating-
that's what's on the menu today!
i've got moves to make,
and i'm going to pursue my pugnacious prerogative to the pinnacle
of participatory prowess.
there's no time to worry,
only to DO some things.
rye in the oven,
seitan on the stove,
chee'cake in the processor,
and every single cell packed to the permeable membrane with intentional expertism.
today is the day,
and it's GOT to be a good one;
never quiet, never soft.....

Tuesday, July 19

PIZZA PARTY!!!!

holy crap, kids-
it's been a little minute since i last made pizza.
now,
that's not to say i haven't tuned up a ton of pizza pie in the interim,
just that the homestyle jauns were absent since the 4th!
that's too dang long, duders.
so,
in the interest of making the magic happen,
and saucing up the sorcery of kitchen wizardy all the way to eleven,
last night was the well-nigh, perhaps high-past time for a supersized
PIZZA PARTY!!!!
woooooooooohooooooo.
customized high-hydration dough is dope-
i went heavy on the semolina, and added wheat gluten,
to ensure it was stretchy, and crawnchy, and expert.
mmhmm.
the dough was on point,
so that just left the assembly up to us.
ampy-d was right on top of the mise en place.
so much so that i only had a few little tweaks and twerks to work out,
while i marveled at the splooshy consistency of our makeshift-silken-underchee'.
whoa!
that's a molto wet variation,
but,
it sure bakes up sooo nicey-nice in a HOT hot oven.
and the hottness wasn't just in the steel firesquare, either.
no way.
it spilled out onto three half-and-half howitzers
of high-power cannonfirin' crucial pizza partytime power!!!!
we'll start at the beginning,
and check the g-darn-type teleport:

'ZA'ZA'ZA'ZA'ZA!!
get that corn outta my face!!!
guys,
the split pie big time optimized option action is my new favorite.
it's essentially MORE kinds of pizza, only faster.
on the one side, there's crispy-edged brussels sprouts,
over caramelized onions,
with fried garlic sprankles ( a new mandatory item over here);
and then, on the other half,
there's those grape tomatoes, sweet mini red pepper rings,
and grilled sweeeeet corn,
plus,
a finishing move of scallion and red onion spranks!!!
kaBOOM.
it's a pure-being in-the-moment burst of oneness with the world,
with crushed tomatoes, daiya mozzerella, and underchee' holding it down below.
that's right.
and that's just the third of it.
check it out:

WORD!
broccolini is like more exxxpensive, rangy broccoli,
that makes it better in my book.
fancier and uglier is sort of my thing, y'know?
hahaha.
so, when i can fire up soem onions, tomatoes, brox, sauce, chee' and underchee',
all at once?
i gotta do it to it.
i mean,
pizza is as pizza does, and if you aren't doo-dooin' it as hard as you can?
you're probably an A*-hole, and i'll never really love you.
oh, and the right hand side?
i got a real white pie wonder poppin' off.
underchee', and daiya,
fried red potato crisps, grilled leeks, fried garlic sprankles,
and fresh red onion for the victory!
damn, friends.
that's the ticket to the ovenly valhalla of victual virtuosity,
but,
too much is the right amount,
and that's why there's still a whole other 'nother other one.
check it:

i love pizza.
it's a very satisfying thing to make.
start to finish,
from the first activation of the yeast, in my secret sugarwater flaxmeal nutrient bath,
all the way past the cold proof, and the preheat, and the mise en moflippin' place-
i get psyched every single time,
and this last time, right here, is no exception, although it is exceptional.
recognize.
i got that margherita jammie, with tomato, cashew-garlic chee' on the top and bottom,
and garden fresh basil,
this one with the onion scraps from all the other halves dropped on there, too-
why/
because i like onions, because onions have ALL the flavor man,.
c'mon.
you know that.
and homemade vegan sausage, and onions,
with our traditional underchee', daiya, and crushy-crushed 'matoes.
with the breadcrum/parm style nootch-boost to take it to eleven.
just like i always say we will.
i'm all about that molto classico, yo.
the delicious levels are off the meter.
the crust could've been just a little bit less bready,
but i'll attribute that to four pies' worth of dough,
and only three pizzas worth of toppings.
next time,
you'll see it really become something supreme.
so i had a little exxtra doughski dopeness,
but it didn't actually hurt anything.
the tops were top notch,
and the crispiness was upper tier, too.
when it's time to (albie)rock a (pizza)party,
i do what i do because that's precisely what i'm here for.
*
if you're not into pizza,
i feel bad for you, son.
this sort of meal is the TRUTH,
and while it's a bit of a labor,
it's a labor of LOVE,
and that makes it matter more,
as well as totally worth every second of effort.
i hope your dinners are as delicious,
your intentions every bit as elevated,
and your gluttony as boorishly wild boarish
and as feeding-frenzied sharklike as ours.
the indulgence is real,
the work is tough but it's fair;
never quiet, never soft....

dents and dings

so,
i made some cookies.
yeah, yeah-
what else is new?
ha.
oh, c'mon, neighbors;
i thought you guys liked cookies?
ohhh, you DO do you?
well,
these new soft and chewy chunks are what's good in the woods,
and i want you to check this mutha-'ucking teleport:

YEAH!!
i started out with just a desire for thumbprints.
y'know?
dents in the middle, stuff in the center, all of that...
but,
once i got started, i couldn't stop activating,
and i ended up with peanut butter coconut chocolate chip softies,
with strawberry frosting swirls,
AND powdered sugary sprankles.
mmhmmm.
MORE cookie means MORE awesome,
and too much is the right amount, anyway.
the recipe, however, is a little bit of a hot mess.
why?
mostly because i just kept throwing sh!t in a bowl until it looked right.
-
*
COOKIE TIME
-
i know for sure i used around a third of a cup of freshly ground coconut,
a whole stick of butterish,
about a cup of mixed sugars (bottom of the bag style)
a third of a cup of natural, wet and blarpity peanut butter,
5 ish ounces of applesauce
a big squirt of agave, because it seemed molto dry
two cups of flour
a pinch of salt
a tiny shake of  baking powder,
and a generous handful of those terrific little-sized chocolate chips.
yup.
*
they're just this side of greasy,
and they're well past the point of chewy.
i baked them at 375F for thirteen unlucky minutes,
and re-poked the centers while they cooled.
neighbors,
sometimes, wet cookie bater doesn't keep it's dented shape,
and you gotta hit it with a secondary thumbprint.
i'm prepared, with a pair of thumbs, to do what i must-
otherwise,
the nestled nook i needed for the strawberry fill wouldn't be there,
and they'd look way too tall.
nobody really loves a too-tall cookie.
too round?
that's fine.
too rich?
sure, that sounds impossible.
too big?
heck yes, giant cookies are rad.
but,
too tall?
ew.
that's not an appropriate cookie trait.
***********
there's NO time to waste,
but there's no free time either.
it's ALL expensive,
and expansive,
and elusive, really.
i gotta mow this lawn,
because that jaun is getting too tall.
and much like the world of cookies,
that's some weak sh!t.
i need to have a shorter blade scenario around the firepit,
for two reasons-
one: it's a FULL MOON TONIGHT,
and i think we should burn our piece of the woodsly goodness high and bright
in celebration.
and two: my children, harvest and maple will be here soon,
for more family togetherness, and the lyme diseasey length of tick-hiding turf
isn't the best way to encourage some outside time for those two shut-ins.
i'd rather be chopping weirdie scraps of found wood,
but i s'pose a speck of responsible homeownery ornery adulthood has the priority.
yuck.
there are obligations, both real and imagined,
that weigh heavily on the brow of your buddy over here.
there's more to be done than i can do alone,
but jeez, louise,
the white mountain sourdough is already in the oven,
the seeded rye is bulk fermenting on the counter,
the starters have been fed and so has crabtree,
Tea'N'Toast was served an hour ago,
and still,
i'm waiting for a respectable time to get out there and make some noise.
uh-huh.
loud fresh hardness is most unwelcome in the soft hours of the morning-
duders,
i'm even opening the windows wider,
to wake up the neighborhood with the aroma of fresh baked greatness....
just so i can start up the spinning blades sooner.
life isn't always the big deluxxxe epic i'd hoped,
but it sure as sh!t isn't ever boring.
it's all really happening,
and i'm pushing participation to the limit;
never quiet, never soft.....

Monday, July 18

ampy does it.

guys,
i gotta tell you about what's poppin'!
ampy-d made something expert,
and i'm pretty psyched about it.
i came home to a flippin' elite dinnertime,
and i ate pounds of it before i even realized what i was doing-
mmmhmmmm.
that's no joke.
check the potful-of-power-type teleport:

CUBAN BOWL!!!!!
farro and mixed greens on the bottom,
black beans, tofu, sweet potatoes, avocado, fried plantains,
and homemade pico de gallo on top!!!
holy crapola,
it's a giant tub of pure hottness,
and it was already ready when i walked i the door.
sunday nights get righteous when there's exxxtra time for dog walks
and long talks with a lovely ladyfriend,
because the food is good, and hot, and waiting to be devoured
without any post-work prep time.
neighbors,
i'm lucky to have somebody who gives enough of a sh!t about me
to spend half a day off making something great.
a second plus-sized bowl made that evening walk a mandatory excursion.
for realsies.
i couldn't pretend i would resist mashing my face into another heaping helping,
and i helped myself to it like i was entitled to all the edible excellence in my edifice.
hahahaha.
i'm just so super into eating food, dudes.
radical vegan eats,
and radical vegan sweets,
and radical vegan treats,
all for me!!
*
there's dough on the counter, kids.
lots of it.
i got one sourdough bulk fermenting right now,
and i've got another waiting to mix-
i've ALSO got a super-semolina high-hydration pizza dough proofing, as well.
it's party time over at the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
and even though nobody else is coming,
because nobody else is invited,
there's still a whole lot of productive preparation underway.
i do that sort of sh!t,
because i look forward to enjoying solid sustenance,
shoved soulfully into my contrarian countenance.
ha!
there's tasty piece who made me a superior sunday supper
who deserves a return of the favor,
and i'm pretty sure a pile of pizzas is gonna pull me about even with her effort.
it's ALL really happening,
and yeah,
it usually revolves around food,
but since when is THAT weak sauce?
this is What Is,
and it's best way i can think of it being;
never quiet, never soft.....

mycology.

neighbors,
the very rainy nights and mornings,
plus the cool-hot-muggy-wet-cool temperature cycle
are all the stimulus that all the secret underground natural world needs
to signal the eruption of all the fruity spore carrying weathermakers
that have been patiently waiting in the soil,
enriching the mould with their fungy freshness.
what?
oh.
guys,
it's mushroom time up here in the woodsly goodness.
check the teleport:

i'm just sayin',
nature sure knows how to surprise me.
every day, there are new toadstools and turkey tails and buttons bursting
up and out along my daily walking route,
and it's exciting to me.
from one day to the next,
the whole landscape is altered with all these colorful caps.
crabtree couldn't care less,
and if he's noticed at all,
it's to step on them,
not eat them;
which i s'pose is a good thing,
since a super-sick hallucinating canine battle-beastly battering ram
is NOT what i need in my life.
there are fairy/faerie fury rings,
and little villages of gilled globes,
and all of them, all around me,
are pretty flippin' expert.
check it:

perfect!
it looks like a pine-needle covered one-legged jellyfish!!
that's pretty cool if you ask me.
plus,
there's plenty more where that came from:

c'mon!
nature wins, duders.
*
i like it when there's flora flourishing.
and i also like it when there's fresh-baked bread!
wait, what?
i'm speaking on natural living secret organisms making their presence felt, man.
get with it.
i'm making connections,
and i'm following the train of thought to the next stop.
check the white-mountain-white-sourdough-type teleport:

......badaboooooooom.
another 'nother loaf of that bright white bouncy big business.
high hydration, bubbly crumb, subtly sharp sour flavor,
and a crust that is zero percent weak.
i'm on it.
and i'm really getting comfortable with what i'm doing.
we're going on a month, now.
yeah.
a whole new adventure,
wherein i make my own,
do it myself,
and create something from the simplest of stuff.
it's kind of the way it's always been,
just taken to a more deliberately independent level.
guys,
i'm a hermit on a hill, filling up this Folk Life & Liberty Fortress.
one the ones, i'm walled in by mountains,
and beset upon all sides by easier ways and shortcuts that must be avoided.
the hardest smarter way is what i'm choosing-
with more work, invention, attention, and intention,
and i'm allowing the wider wooded wolds of my small small world
to include me in their gentle, understated unfolding along the
creases and folds of a secret plan that is slowly revealing itself.
i am grateful for the time i have been given,
and for the places where i'm spanning the minutes among the mycelium;
never quiet, never soft.....

Sunday, July 17

too hot to oven.

ha.
hey guys-
yesterday was too hot to use that oven.
i could've gone for some pizza, to be sure-
heck,
i can pretty much ALWAYS get into the idea of pizza...
but,
it was just not a option, as the mercury in my kitchen was rising
higher than the outdoor ambient temperature should've allowed.
so,
it was quantifiably too hot for pizza,
at least,
it was too hot to MAKE pizza.
we could've probably ordered up a few pies,
but,
i mean,
c'mon,
it's better to do it yourself if you've got the wherewithal to create something great.
.....and i doo-doo that freaky-diki sh!t no matter what the thermometer says,
because hottness is a byproduct of the ferocious cast-iron boilerplate furnaces
on the INside of each and every red-blooded lava-pumping hard-hearted warrior poet.
word up.
i just kept myself from being the stinkiest sweatrag of sweatiness by only using the stove.
mmhmmm.
guys,
if simple sandwiches are good,
then slightly more complicated sandwiches are MUCH better.
check the saturday-night-'guini-type teleport:

crushing that 'burguesa game is a must.
black bean barbarian burger business,
with molto fixin's,
on a fresh-to-death flatbread?
WORD.
-
neighbors,
i used a half a cup of whole wheat sourdough starter,
and added into a half a cup of all-purpz,
with another 1/3 of a cup of crushed oats,
and a 1/3 of a cup of water,
plus two teaspoons of baking soda,
and the results were F*ing expert!
i wasn't set up for sandwiches,
but the improvised activation really had me feeling positive.
once the bread scene was sorted,
it was time to get crackin' on the burgers.
-
this time around i used:
12 oz. black beans, rinsed;
four cloves of roasted garlic;
1 small sliced onion, caramelized;
2 T GPOP;
3/4 tsp roast cumin;
1 T smoked paprika;
two shakes of coriander;
2 T olive oil;
1/4 cup wheat gluten;
1/4 cup garbanzo flour;
1 tsp blended chia & flaxmeal
all pulped up in the food processor,
pressed flat and allowed to marry together for a bit,
before a slow pan frying....
easy.
-
i dressed it up with red cabbage,
red onion, red ripe tomatoes, and a bunch of almost-overripe avocado,
which really smoothed it out,
and creamed it up,
and added the silky sexxxiness to every bite.
sandwiches, man.
they don't have to be boring,
and even when they're simple, they should still be dope.
rules is rules, after all.
.....
and what's up with that chipotle tofu?
yep.
dried chipotle pepper, ancho pepper, ho'sauce, GPOP,
and olive oil,
frying high on the skillet,
with a splash of liquid smoke to activate all those tastes a little more,
and then tossed with a combination of scallion and cilantro sprankles.
it's so straightforward,
but it smells like fanciness!
it's a good little side of awesomeness, for sure.
*
friends,
there's salad too.
nothing crazy.
mixed greens, grape tomatoes, red onion, cukes, sweet orange bell pepper,
and lemony tahini dressing.
i need some cool greens when there's naught but hot kitchen and hot spice in my face.
-
dinnertime is important around here.
it's where and when we recap, reconnect, and refuel,
after our respectively loooong days of doo-doo buttery spreading out.
making stuff, and making the best of it,
and making damned sure we're unwound and unwounded,
before we dig in and hurt ourselves on heroic quantities of nourishment,
is the way we stay sane,
and keep our ties tight.
y'know?
we got that table solidarity jaun,
but mostly because of family togetherness,
and not because we want the d!ckturds to feel more comfortable.
that's a thing.
we stick together over here.
me, ampy-d, and this A*hole dog.
dinner for all,
and all for dinner;
never quiet, never soft.....