Just thinking about her made him warm inside. No longer did he wish to be a fish or a sunflower–or anything else, for that matter. He was glad to be human. For sure, it was a great inconvenience to have to walk on two legs and wear clothes. There were so many things he didn’t know. Yet had he been a fish or a sunflower, and not a human being, he might never have experienced this emotion. So he felt. -Haruki Murakami (“Samsa in Love“)
Because it’s been a long time since I last posted a list of favorites, I figured that now was the time to do it. I started my new job last week and it’s been keeping me fairly busy; although my evenings are free from responsibility, there’s something nice about coming home and turning the computer off after a long day of staring into its pale glow as I compile lists and consider different library improvement plans (yes, the new job takes almost full advantage of my previous skill set).
The good news is that I have Fridays off, so I think this will become a regular blogging day for me. After a few months out of the work force, it’s nice to have structure again–a regular schedule–as well as to put on nice clothes and go somewhere besides the grocery store, the movies or the dog park. And on that note, I hope the list sends some inspiration your way and helps to temper the midweek slump!
For those of you who are new to preserving, Saving the Season is a wonderful place to begin, either the blog or the book. I bought a copy back in September and it’s been a wonderful resource–a nice companion to my only other preserving book. Both have been seeing a lot of action in my kitchen recently, thanks to the mountain of apples we’ve been working through. In addition to apples, I’ve also made pickled peppers with Kevin West’s help and they’re just the thing to brighten up any sandwich.
Speaking of apples, this apple pie from Chicago’s Hoosier Mama may just be the world’s best pie. Since one pie wasn’t enough to polish off our apples, this Salted Caramel Apple Pie may be next. If nothing else, this is giving me a reason to work on my pie technique.
I’ve been crowing about Borgen nonstop for the past year; I love its flawed, but very real female heroine and the fact that it explores mundane and current political issues in ways that make them interesting. After a recent episode that focused on the Danish pork industry, I found this article; all I can say is that I hope American TV can take a few pointers from Borgen.
I don’t often read Gluten Free Girl, but I recently became aware of a blog post that she wrote about a few topics that have been very much on my mind these past few months: food blogging and food photography. When I read the lines, “Food blogs remind me of high school,” I was sold. I don’t know why it has to be this way, but I do feel sometimes that food blogging is all about style over substance and that it makes something as basic as food and cooking into a competitive and cliquey act. Are people and their experiences really meant to be brands? Do page views (stats) really matter? I understand that this is the way a capitalist society works, but it’s nothing short of disturbing and depressing. It is also why I eschew several forms of social media, although I realize that this is hardly the way to increase readership. Ahh, the plight of the modern blogger.
Of all the blogger cookbooks that I’ve bought, I think The Sprouted Kitchen is my favorite. There’s something so simple and nourishing about Sara’s food; I recently adapted her take on a Bon Appetit recipe for Pomegranate Relish, which included chili roasted tofu and millet. If you have a few pomegranates around and want to make a meal out of them, this is definitely the way to go.
Finally, although the season for candy corn has already passed us by (and I can’t say I’m sorry to see it go; I’ve never been a fan), I wanted to include a link and photo to a recent Bay Area Bites post; yours truly was in charge of the photographs. I will also say that, although I’m no lover of candy corn, when it’s made with honey, it’s got a more complex and interesting flavor.