Tuesday I shopped and made a red salsa. The blended and cooked kind that is better warm. New Mexico chiles for depth and chiles de arbol for heat. Yesterday I made filling for tamales with criminis, shallots, a little shredded seitan and chilpotles in adobo. Today I will make tamales, soupy black beans with epazote, red rice and guacamole and roast a couple of trays of Brussels sprouts. I’ll offer a growler of Troeg’s Nugget Nectar, and bottles of Sombra mescal and Makers Mark (and then be sad that the Makers Mark was the most popular choice when the other two should be preferred). I’ll start at 4:00, a full one hour too early, for guests at 7:00. Spell check finds nine errors in this paragraph. I changed nothing. Am I learning faster than the internet?
I do most everything too early, except this year I waited until yesterday to start seeds for some of the garden plants–a month later than last year! Paste tomatoes, yellow cherry tomatoes, Japanese pickling eggplant, Italian basil, cukes for pickles and another kind for eating raw and kale. I could get all of these as seedlings from the co-op. I think I am supposed to start seeds for more exotic things. Things I can’t easily buy. But I don’t want exotic things just now, I like starting seeds and the gear is just sitting there. So why the delay? I’ll blame my late start starting seeds on the co-op not selling seed starting mix until last week, but I think it has as much to do with feeling that early would be a bigger mistake this year than others. Just how long will it take this soil to warm up? If I can control myself, I’ll wait to plant the seedlings until June 1. We’ll see.
Yesterday I watched Happy People: A Year in the Taiga. One point nine-five times (I watched most of it once in the afternoon, stopping mid-stream when Lacey came home, then after dinner I talked Lacey into watching it with me by saying I had stopped half way when in truth I had no idea how much was left, but I now know I had stopped with only five minutes to go). I was crazy for the dogs, seriously nuts for the dogs, but was also mighty impressed by one of the trappers (as in a guy killing sable for a living).
When I catch myself appreciating aspects of non-vegan folk, I worry for a moment what other vegans will think. Only for as long as it takes me to remember that I want to be a kind of good person that does more than abstaining from bad acts. Finding reasons to forgive and love seems more productive in this regard than finding reasons to hate. Still, I feel funny appreciating first David Chang and now this weathered old trapper guy, all in a week. If you watch Mind of a Chef and/or Happy People, let me know what you think. Am I on a dangerous slope or becoming a better person? Probably neither. I am mostly cooking, eating, exercising and watching Netflix. Preparing for good acts, then? Why not. A little charity toward myself.
One hundred and eighty degree flip now, back to a very safe place. Lagusta wants us to eat breakfast. I remember a time when I didn’t regularly eat breakfast, but it is a dim memory. Maybe even a made up feeling. My present condition and clearer memories involve wanting to eat every meal. Twice. Even if you are all about breakfast, give her wonderful breakfast soup post a read. Then incorporate into your life, particularly into your cooking, one or more of the dozens of priceless nuggets. You won’t regret it. You’ll owe me a big thanks for pointing you to Lagusta and a bigger thanks to Lagusta for teaching you how to be a better cook and eater.
So there it is. Have at it.