stovetop, salad bowl, low oven

this morning, and through the afternoon, it was classic rock on the radio (in its best and worst iterations) me, and the kitchen: humming, hemming, hawing; bustling & burbling.


made a big batch of creamy red beans with onion–sliced– & garlic–minced– cooked down with anchovy & thyme; threw in hot sauce, red wine vinegar, and oodles of late-afternoon-sun-colored extra virgin olive oil–glassy golden green, sharp, and exuberantly, after a couple of quick folds, making the beans still creamier.

made a salad with leftover green beans–cooked last night with some thick-sliced white onion–and sardines, anchovy, italian parsley, cucumber, mint.

made a batch of maple & olive oil granola with almonds, candied ginger and prunes.

there is something so peaceful–restorative, even–about just you and your wooden spoon & spatula, your stovetop, your salad bowl, your oven on low.

the week will bring every iteration of beans–with flatbread, on salad, topped off with feta or cold roast chicken or carrot salad.

but for now they’re cooling in the big orange dutch oven, and the granola is waiting to be transferred to mason jars. that salad packed with oily fish and fresh herbs, on the other hand, is long gone.

fog linen work / @odetosunday / not without salt / kisses sweeter than wine / john laurie / age old tree

Advertisements

lately

lately I’ve been working at a pseudo-european (spanish by way of spooky, soulful old new orleans, to be exact; untouched by time since about 1985) place. tiny, with tiny tables. unpretentious and unplugged. warm, with big cast-irons full of paella and small plates adorned with lettuce & shaved carrot garnishes–the latter just a swipe up the side of a hearty specimen with a mandolin, impassive, impressive, unassuming. sangria made with cheap jugs of wine steeped with honey and diluted with sparkling lemonade. sassy not classy.

so, hey, let’s all raise a glass of sangria–or, hell, whatever cheap wine you have handy–bust out the cocktail peanuts, and cheers to keeping it real, shall we?

furthermore: trying to “insinuate some resonance onto the plate with nothing but marrow and toast, butter and sugar”. Or, “Neon-orange Delicious over sweet-potato Righteous”.

@heavyslime / bon appetit

late May, New Orleans 

late may is humid. the air is dense with moisture & termite swarms.
did you know crows are huge? they’re the size of a small cat. their claws are reptilian.

eating leftovers resurrected with fried eggs. watching documentaries. reading essays by george orwell.

oh, and, welcome home.

constantin brancusi / oliver schwarzwald / ciccella / kleidersachen

lately

//

lately, I’ve been reading Norman Mailer on writing, on America via Hollywood and its relationship with the con artist, the visual artist and everything in between; went to a thrift shop and bought a stack of old yellowed paperbacks to sing me to sleep.

I’ve been eating sautéed greens with fresh ricotta, and cold rice-noodle salads with herbs and radish and grilled octopus and feta and avocado.

I’ve been taking long walks in the evening, surrounded by balm and dusk and warm cooking smells.

I’ve been looking towards spring, and then summer, and beyond towards roadtrips–and just newness, exploration, journey, bloom. it’s the twilight of my twenties and I’m moving, onwards and forwards and upwards, finding my way out of a some sort of labyrinth, or closer to the same one’s center.

some things

some things just always taste better when someone else makes them. cookies, for instance. a modicum of effort involved, but they’re a quintessential treat. to which you want to be treated.

making cookies is quite gratifying, don’t get me wrong, but isn’t much of the gratification derived by the tactile process, the warm kitchen and the sweet smells, by sharing said cookies with your friends & neighbors? not, in fact, through eating the fruits of your labor and stowing away leftovers for the week to come?

and is it not still more gratifying to eat homemade cookies with no guilt-ridden obligation (read: guilt-ridden desire) to plow through the leftovers, much less deal with the whole ‘tactile process’ song & dance?

tuna salad. tuna salad is something that just tastes better when your mom makes it, or even when you buy it from a deli and eat it out of a plastic tub. is it just too simple to satisfy when tasked with making it oneself? am I, personally, possessing too snobbish a palate to ever achieve pure, unfettered, mayonnaisey tuna salad greatness? always throwing in some boiled potatoes or cannellini beans or a bevy of fresh herbs.

clearly it’s all tied up in a mess of nostalgia, tied to moms and simple pleasures and the freedom to let one’s mind wander while enjoying a tuna sandwich and some cookies, in a reverie of self-involvement. no strings-attached satisfaction. no worries about how the batch came out or the dishes or the leftovers. just, joy.

rose & crown / orangette

lately

lately, it’s been rainy, all the doom & gloom of late summer in mid-August, Texas. I know we have months of that cauterizing heat left, the ecstatic sun I irrationally, sentimentally hold dear, but right now it feels like fall is right around the corner.

image

in honor of the Parisian weather, I made lentil salad. Sunday morning woke up sleepy-headed and cooked up some thick-cut bacon, using stale bread to soak up the excess fat from the rashers like a paper towel laid down by one’s well-meaning, fool mother, and some more to sop up what was left in the cast iron; truly, a blissful seance.

image

then, I sauteed carrots, onions, garlic and parsley until tender & aromatic while I cooked up those gems of the legume family, those pretty little black beluga lentils. tossed them all together with a mustardy vinaigrette, adding floral tarragon and licorice-sweet basil and cow’s milk feta.

to be enjoyed with bacon, bacon grease, a crusty bread–even a humble loaf at death’s door!–and Tabasco, the only hot sauce suited for Parisian doom & gloom.

lately

lately, I’ve died a thousand times for fresh mozzarella covered in cracked black pepper & olive oil, cold whole milk with muesli & berries, humble ricotta smattered on a salad of grated carrots & beets. I love the cleanliness, the subtle sweetness (to be clear, we’re talking grass-fed dairy only, please & thank you).

I suppose in the way parsley tastes green, milk (& proper fresh cheese) tastes white. I could bathe in it, à la cleopatra. there is something so essential, raw, almost sexy about things both simple & satisfying. milk fulfills my animal needs.

speaking of sex (and, I suppose, love,) this essay is everything.

I first read Eileen Myles last Spring, in a New York School Poets class, which I took only to have an excuse to read Frank O’Hara and discuss his cleverness. (I love this photo of her, and if anything else besides February and her essay is to make me miss summer, it might be this white tee, and this elated pup.) this was the class in which I didn’t fall in love per se, but had a brief affair with a classmate from Boston–he had a charming accent, a warmth & a safety about him that made it easy to talk about modernism, textuality, poetry and hooey like that and actually feel like you were getting somewhere. there was depth, and negronis, and chain-smoking, and a kindling. he’s a writer, off in grad-school, talking about hooey. he looked milk-fed: tall, all-American (meaning, idiomatically, Irish).

’tis the season, I suppose, to be romantic, and nostalgic about romances, and to sexualize something as innocent and/or banal as a glass of milk.

cheers, lovers & lovettes.
xxoo