A Compendium of Random Thoughts

Properly Dressed with Chili Sauce

Hot and Sour Shiratake Noodles with Tofu

Howdy!  This week has been a little all over the place.  What follows will probably closely resemble a stream of conciousness!  First, food:  Up above, you will see a meal taken from Fat Free Vegan http://blog.fatfreevegan.com/2006/05/hot-and-sour-shirataki-noodles-with.html.  I used the lazy girl’s pre-packaged coleslaw mix instead of Napa cabbage and added some dried shiitake mushrooms.  Quick and easy!  This week’s experimental vegetable was the sunchoke, aka Jerusalem artichoke.  This link intrigued me: http://sweetbeetandgreenbean.net/2010/01/22/sunchokes-roasted-with-lavender-and-garlic/.  I didn’t use lavender, but the sunchokes did, in fact, have an earthy potato-like taste.  I liked ’em even better as re-heated leftovers.  I took photos, but they look like strange fungi and are simply NOT photogenic.  Just click on the link.  Up next…fennel!  And may we all do a little jig because champagne mango season is finally upon us? 

In other news, I went to another “Great Lives” lecture at the University of Mary Washington.  This week author Caroline Weber spoke about her book Queen of Fashion: What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Revolution.  She was an extremely engaging speaker.  I read the book and I’ve read many other works on Marie Antoinette, but I always love learning something new and this lecture sent me home with some new, juicy tidbits!  For instance, the reason 4,000+ peasants marched on Versailles prior to the Revolution, convinced that Marie Antoinette was personally hoarding flour from the starving masses, was because she was the icon of the massive 2+ foot hair pompadour, which was held together with massive amounts of…flour paste!  I’ve always just kind of passed over the reasoning behind why they would hold her responsible, but here’s just one more example of how fashion and personal taste, for a French royal, could truly have political consequences.

From flour to cauliflower.  Remember my previous post where I discovered the textile artist Kaffe Fassett while reading Margaret Drabble’s memoir??  Well, in late August my husband and I are planning a pre-deployment road trip from TX through the Southwest, up the coast of California.  I started poking around Monterey sites online and my co-worker Bonnie went into ecstasies about Nepenthe Restaurant in Big Sur.  I pull up their website and who do you think sells her works at the gift shop??  Kaffe Fassett!  What a peculiar, roundabout coincidence.  I went to San Diego when I was 3 and my husband lived in Monterey when he was in elementary school, but otherwise the whole western part of the U.S. is uncharted territory.  I think we’ll stay in hotels on our sojourn through the NM and AZ deserts, but perhaps try to camp in the numerous national and state parks in Cali.  Should be about 60 hours roundtrip, if we drove all the way through, but we’ll stop and smell the air and enjoy the sites, naturally : )  Maybe go to a rest stop occasionally.  Eat.  Sleep.  You know.

I finally saw Food Inc. and enjoyed it.  Just reaffirmed my committment to knowing what I’m putting into my body and creating a healthy, natural environment for myself and my husband, as much as possible.  I suppose that’s the nurturer.  My husband was more intrigued by the economic implications of a food system monopolized by a few industrial corporations.  He is an omnivore and does not actively shop for organic foods, but if all-natural meats are available, that’s what he’ll choose.  He’s just somewhat convinced that organic eating is too cost-prohibitive.  And, I can say, it just hasn’t been that important to him, but maybe now…

Happy Friday.

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