Entries from January 2012

Butternut Squash and Coconut Soup

January 17, 2012

ButternutSoup copy

ButternutSoupB

Yesterday it was an unseasonably warm 70ºF in Oklahoma but my taste buds were telling me otherwise. I was craving winter soup and had some extra squash on hand. I’ve also been consuming obscene amounts of coconut lately. Coconut water after my workout. Coconut milk in my coffee (surprisingly delicious). And I’ve been cooking almost exclusively with coconut oil. I wasn’t sure if coconut and butternut squash went together so I Googled it and came across this recipe. But I adapted it because I don’t eat anything without garlic.

Butternut Squash & Coconut Soup
1 small butternut squash
2 smallish-medium acorn squash
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 small apples, any variety, diced
2 cups water
2 teaspoons yellow curry powder (I get mine blended from Native Roots)
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
4 cloves of garlic
Pinch of ras el hanout
1/2 14-ounce can coconut milk (save the rest for your coffee)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Use your favorite method to roast the squash (I like to cut in half, scoop seeds out, sprinkle with olive oil & salt and roast in a pan with .5″ of water for 45 minutes at 400F – until tender)

2. When there is about 10 minutes left on the squash saute the diced onion in coconut oil.

3. Mince the garlic and ginger in a food processor (or by hand – whatever floats your boat)

4. When onions are translucent add the garlic, ginger and diced apples. Saute for about a minute and then add your spices. When the spices become fragrant (after about 30 seconds) add 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer.

5. Scoop the squash out of the skin (this is the most labor-intensive part of the process) and add to the soup. Let simmer for 10 minutes.

6. Add coconut milk – let simmer for another 5-10 minutes.

7. Blend the soup with an immersion blender or in your food processor.

8. Salt & pepper to taste. Garnish with coconut flakes.

This recipe is vegan and serves 2-4 people.
Ingredients in green are sourced locally.

Wabi-Sabi

January 16, 2012

WabiSabi

Liz introduced this phrase to me once as I was describing something so perfectly imperfect that it made my heart hurt. I lacked the vocabulary to articulate my feelings about the subject when she interjected with “Wabi-sabi”:

Wabi-sabi represents a comprehensive Japanese world view or aesthetic centered on the acceptance of transience. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is “imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete”… Characteristics of the wabi-sabi aesthetic include asymmetry, asperity (roughness or irregularity), simplicity, economy, austerity, modesty, intimacy and appreciation of the ingenuous integrity of natural objects and processes. – from Wikipedia

Wabi-sabi is my old home that makes a hobby of collecting dust and cracks. Wabi-sabi is my jacked up toes and pimple on my chin. Wabi-sabi is the gap between here and there. In 2012 I will capture, shape and share the beauty that is imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete.

Wabi-sabi.

The Traveler

January 13, 2012

Traveler

AnatomySnowpocalypse

WaytoEBC

A little over 4 years ago I felt trapped. Stuck. I could feel this little bundle of sticks and wool in the pit of my stomach. It was too painful to just let it sit there untouched. I tried to purge this kindling from my guts – but it just sat there – it quietly told me that it wasn’t going anywhere. So I decided to set fire to it. To transform it.

I went on a quest to find a flame – and I took Jeremy with me. We looked for fire on the beaches of Mexico and on the coasts of Canada. But I couldn’t quite find what I was looking for. I needed to dig deeper.

So we made a bold move and went to Mt. Everest. And on the top of a very cold mountain I found fire. A spark was ignited and a steady flame has been living in my stomach ever since but it’s begging for more coal.

I don’t want to be a tourist that collects souvenirs and postcards. I don’t just want to look at pretty buildings and eat great food. I need to see the world through my fingertips and quadriceps and I want to find a little piece of home in the places I go. I want to stuff my well-traveled backpack with meaningful experiences and subtle stories.

I found my flame. I need more fuel.

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Alt Summit

January 12, 2012

Alt /SLC

If you’re on Twitter you’re probably already hearing some Alt Summit buzz. It’s like summer camp for design bloggers – except in the winter.

I’m not only attending this year I’m also speaking!
Last year I noticed that there was lots of talk about sponsorships and advertising – and while I think that’s great I don’t think you have to go down that route to make a living off of blogging.

I will be facilitating a round table discussion on Friday, January 20th at 9:00am about leveraging your blog as an authentic marketing tool (peppered with some discussion about personal branding). I want to talk about how to use your blog to help you make a sustainable living as an artistpreneur or microbusiness. It’s about content – not advertising.

AltSpeakers

I’m also really excited about hanging out with some of my very favorite people and making new friends and meaningful connections. The Jealous Curator will be roomies (I’m telling you – it really is like summer camp). Ryan, Cole, Jason and I will probably build a treehouse and start a club. I’m going to make Alyssa become my best friend. And Meg – well, Meg and I have a lot to catch up on. And that’s just to name (drop) a few.

Are you going to Alt this year?

Eff DIY

January 11, 2012

DeskScrew

DeskWood

DeskFlange

If someone ever enthusiastically says something along the lines of “You can do it yourself!” I will come back with a hostile “YOU can do it YOURself.”

It started in Home Depot (isn’t that where it always begins) and a need for new desks. I had this brilliant idea of building two large desks out of hollow wood doors and lead pipes. I had the pipes cut and threaded to size by a disgruntled Home Depot employee. I pushed around a lumber cart full of materials like I owned the place. I was feeling so proud and resourceful. In fact, I had a brief flirtation with quitting my job and becoming a furniture designer because – WOW! it’s so easy!

I get home and start drilling, assembling and DIY-ing. And by “I” I mean Jeremy. Flanges into wood. Pipes into flanges. It was a rather quick process but we immediately discovered that these brilliant DIY desks were actually wobbly pieces of shit.

I felt deflated. Disappointed. Annoyed. Wasteful. Sad. Jeremy and I started trouble-shooting and brainstorming ideas on how to salvage the project but I was done.

The next day my sister and I ordered two really sturdy dining room tables to be delivered tomorrow. So not only do I not want to DIY ever again – I don’t even want to leave my house.

Until the next project…

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