did i stop cooking in connecticut?
despite going out to eat at all my favorite places,
i still made a little somethin' for me and my ma.
in an unfamiliar kitchen,
using largely what was on hand,
plus a few purchases from the insanely busy
and preposterously poorly-staffed grocery store,
i whipped up a tasty dinner, on the fly,
and in a hurry.
check the teleport:
i'm not used to track lightning,
so i think the photo is a bit more indoor-nighttime
than my smartphone photography skills could circumvent.
it's kind of fun in a way,
trying to hook it all up outside the carefully constructed comfort
of one's own optimized space.
i was excited about fancy dinner,
but i was the most excited about all the new and different
non-new-hampshire nature bits i found along the pathways
of my loooooong morning walks with crabtree.
we were out there in my old stomping grounds,
and we were, well, stomping.
all around the southern part of town,
in the rain, and on the ice, and in the woods,
and all along the wide range of neighborhoods that exist within one hour
of leisurely on-foot pacing.....
i had a heck of a time.
and when i was done with that,
i had a heck of a dinner...
red lentil seitan cutlets,
with tomato relish;
creamy tempeh wild rice, with maple-sweetened tempeh medallions;
and some broth-braised broccolini buds to activate any nutrients
all that beige might've been missing.
i hydrated the tempeh in store-bought veggie broth,
with GPOP, and black pepper, and crushed red pepper,
and real maple syrup, of course.
my folks have that on hand just in case i stop by.
i added all the trimmings of the tempeh discs to the rice,
and used more broth instead of water to boil it up.
really, it was an exercise in adaptation,
and i think i pulled it off.
i had all four burners going at once-
simmering and sizzling those tempeh circles
until the liquid was absorbed and dissolved,
so they could caramelize a bit of the maple sugars,
and get a little crisp on the sides.
bubbling the red lentils with a little sauteed red onion,
about a cup's worth of cooked results,
and adding in the GPOP, parsley, black pepper, paprika, smoked sea salt,
and a cup of vital wheat gluten, to make those patty-caked cutlets
for shallow olive oil frying.
i deglazed the pan twice with broth, too.
i made good use of that stuff.
i even added a tablespoon of it to the chopped tomatoes and onion i had blistering
in oil, touched with paprika and peppers and parsley and thyme.
and i even got some scallions, to garnish all those jauns with sprankles?
and while it wasn't a recipe day,
it was a feast all the same.
i could've done a lot worse with a lot more,
so i'm counting it as a win.
did you guys know that i curate my own content?
sometimes, i make a magical dinner,
but for whatever reason, it just doesn't make it on here.
a month ago, i made this:
that's a whole lot of gooey goodness going on, guys.
it tasted amazing in every way, too-
but that picture is for sh!t,
so i left it out.
the point i'm making here is-
it's ALL really happening,
but i get to choose what to focus on,
and what i want to share with the world.
that must apply to everything, right?
like, not just food?
even when there's crowded and poorly lit, questionably plated dinners,
or equally dim and obstructed days and nights and weeks,
we can just archive those failures and foibles,
and focus instead of the fresh-to-deathness that's sure to be coming next.
i'm giving it a go,
i'm even eating the ugly food anyway.
and i'm enjoying the good qualities that still exist within it-
it's not my preference,
but that's occasionally all there is.
never quiet, never soft.....