I should be writing. Instead…butternut squash soup.

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In keeping with the whole ‘putting off till later’ theme, here is some breaking news: Merriam-Webster’s thesaurus doesn’t grok the word procrastinate.

Moving on…

I had gained so much procrastinative ** momentum from my earlier foray into non-productivity that I sauntered into the kitchen. Imagine that.

Shockingly, I chose to cook healthy.

I had no intention of opening a cookbook, of course.

I chunked up the squash the day before, knowing full well how exhausting it would be to both prep the squash AND cook it all in one fell swoop. Pretty obvious that I’m not into swoops–energy requirements too steep.

I heated up some olive oil, sprinkled in some za’atar, 21-Seasoning Salute from Trader Joe’s, salt, and pepper for a quick blooming, added chicken broth, and then the squash. That reminds me. It might need a dash of white wine.

butternut squash soup
the ‘before’ photo. 

After a severe pummeling with the hand blender, I might finish it with a little milk and then sprinkle some grated Asiago cheese into each serving.

Turns out I didn’t bother with either the milk or the Asiago. Plenty of flavor to stand on its own. It doesn’t mean I won’t try them with the leftovers, however.

While I didn’t use a recipe, if you stayed with me this long, you deserve one to consider. I like the idea of adding some ginger to the mix.

Thanks for reading. Go make some soup. On your own. No cookbook. If I can do it, so can you.


**Yep, it’s a word. No way did I think so when it flew off my fingers onto the keyboard.

 

 

I should be writing. Instead…solarizing.

afternoon coffee

Hanging in the backyard on the first ‘warm’ day of the year. Creeping close to 70. A classic opening to daylight savings, I would say.

Warm enough for shirt sleeves at 4 in the afternoon. I’m enjoying a 20-minute session with The Wizard of Ads by Roy Williams. He’s an accomplished copywriter, but I read his books for his real life and practical wisdom.

But the weather is too nice to get fired up for a massive word-churn. Better to stretch out and listen to the medley of neighbor-dogs announcing their presence, a single-engine plane overhead, and the Celtic strings of Greenfire .

Besides, there’s more procrastination in the coming moments…

 

I should be writing. Instead…eavesdropping.

Having already done my daily 500 words…I thought I would do a little experimenting.

I’m not sure what I just did for the last 30 minutes counts as writing per se, but it was a great exercise. I was watching a favorite TV show [I even had the coffee nearby.] and decided to eavesdrop on and–with laptop fired up—furiously type up as much of the characters’ dialogue as possible. Potentially rich material for future work, and if not, just plain fun. It sheds a different light on a TV show and one’s writing. It gave me tons of writing prompts, as well.

Give it a try for a change of pace and a mental jostling.

I should be writing. Instead…the farmer’s market.

I should be writing. Farmers Market 2

I know what you’re thinking…that *is* a lot of arrows. 
And I now know what you’re thinking, and yes, I can still fit through a standard doorway.

A few answers:

  1. No, we don’t eat that all at once.
  2. Yes, I did beg the Salvadoran ladies to move in with us and cook.
  3. No, I didn’t offer them the deed to our house.
  4. Yes, I would have compromised and let them deliver their food daily.
  5. Yes, it takes us multiple seatings through the week to finish all this.
  6. Yes, we do have regular health checkups.
  7. No, I generally don’t feel like editing or revising my work after enjoying these treats.

Sourdough biscuits…and more

Continued from previous post

So what made me think the starter was ready to go?

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I’m not the brightest LED around [boy, did. compact fluorescents disappear overnight or what?], but, as the photo suggests, things seemed plenty alive.

And when it’s biscuit time in the kitchen, I rarely limit myself to one version.

I slapped wads** of sourdough starter into separate bowls. I took a look. Nope, I thought. That just wasn’t enough to make a difference in either batch, so I pivoted. [Pivoted…that’s one of those hot self-help terms, along with lean in, mindset and grit. Impressively hip of me, don’t you think?]
The cheese-and-za’atar version got all the starter.

Any other twists?
Why yes, as a matter of fact. I slapped in a more flavorful fat– bacon grease from the fridge. A little bit more than a tablespoon. Figured it would add a little smokiness. Considering each biscuit contained about 1/8 tablespoon, I didn’t think it would warrant a call to the cardiologist.

Moving on to the other half of the dough…Operation: Bisquettes!

bisquettes

These little hummers [raisin-and-chopped almond] added a touch of sweetness to their savory counterparts. And I was all in on the cuteness quotient as well. Okay, not so much. But I did aim for ‘popability’. You know, the ol’ ‘when you can’t eat just one’ factor.

And then there’s the traditional ‘rogue’ biscuit…

mini biscuit for b and b

This one is in honor of my past canine supervisors/kitchen islands, Boo and Bear. I’d scrape up any dough remains, sculpt a little treat like this, and squeeze it onto the tray.

There was the issue of both batches needing a little extra time to give off a little color, despite my brushing some half-and-half on the tops.
But I knew how to handle that.
“Brown, you suckers!”
My wife, stationed by the oven door, primed and ready with knife, plate of butter, suggested the recipe might have called for 450 degrees.
“Yeah…the recipe,” I said.
It’s gotten to that point with biscuits–as long as I can feel my way toward a proper wet-to-dry and flour-to-fat ratio, I’m pretty sure the result won’t disappoint.

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These bisquettes still needed another five minutes in the oven.

Speaking of ratios, if you want a dependable one for biscuits, check out Michael Ruhlman, who just so happens to have authored a book called Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind the Craft of Everyday Cooking .

And so, the carb-fest continued and any trace of guilt drifted away with the first few bites. The honey, melting butter, and Italian roast didn’t hurt the cause either.

Next time: Paint melted butter on the tops. Another couple of teaspoons of bacon grease. More cheese, probably parmesan.

So, give biscuits a shot, but promise me you’ll aim for innovation. That’s half the fun of procrastination, after all.


**wad = palmful

 

I should be writing. Instead…sourdough biscuits.

IMG_2185True, they look more scone-like, but hey, my oven, my label.

***

There’s tons of bread in the kitchen—a nice loaf of altamura from Gathering Together Farms, some English muffins from Trader Joe’s, you know how breads tend to collect.

In our house, this can only mean one thing: Pull out the sourdough starter and add biscuits to the cornucopia of carbs. [and remembering to tuck away any paleo or South Beach-y heresy.]

More later…

The Journey Begins

In my other blog, some of my posts drifted from writing about writing to writing about not writing.

Procrastination…if not always rewarding, if well played, fun.

And most of those posts found me drifting into the kitchen.

Since smarter social media folks suggest bloggers narrow their focus, I decided to aim for the topic of writing avoidance. I can almost hear the resounding mass of readers clicking and tapping in this direction.

I hope you find something here that is either entertaining or familiar…or both.

Thanks for joining me!

 

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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