Saturday, July 19, 2014

Its the Little Things: Community

Flying over the patchwork quilt
of farming somewhere over Colorado 
Transposed the days of the Little Things to breathe-in and include the joy of travel! To stay put in one place and never experience other cultures, food or air would leave me feeling suffocated. Even as I type that last line, my respiration quickens to a small implosion of panic. My personality is wired to explore and experience and my husband is gracious to oblige speaking my love language.

As I write, seated on a plane next to me is a fellow-Nashvillian-replant. She from Portland, Oregon, and me from - welpst, all over. 

After babies and 52 years in one state, she relocated to our little city of hospitality about eight years ago and loves it. However, it's the personal history with friends and locale she misses from home. She longs for the instant connectivity of falling into easy conversation with a former high school classmate or giving directions to the favorite coffee spot known to locals. She skis and misses the quick one hour to perfect, snowy slopes.

I get it.

Although being from everywhere and nowhere, I enjoy my longtime association with Music City and the nooks out of sight from tourists, but am eager to direct the tourists to my favorite locals' haunt. 

There is community in living in one place where neighbors check on neighbors leaving veggies on the porch and friends become family when Thanksgiving finds the road too long and the holiday weekend too short. And, if you're blessed to have them nearby, real family hugs you tightly each time you see each other, picks up the mail and takes care of your dog while you're away.

See, I do get it.

I will always adore the thrill of new places and the journey to get there, but am growing to appreciate there's truly no place like home.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Zucchini Bisque

My neighbors and friends passed along veggies from their gardens. With a good supply of bountiful zucchinis and needing inspiration, I turned to my equally bountiful supply of cookbooks. I'm still working my way through Forks Over Knives and discovered Zucchini Bisque. I have plenty of zucs in case this doesn't go so well.

But, it did go well! I really thought the bisque was good. My hubby was not as thrilled. It's not everyday people crave the zuc as soup. I'm a little joyous about the nutmeg coming through. And, the lemon zest adds the sunshine. I froze the rest for this winter when I'm longing for the fresh taste of summer.

For this recipe you will need either an immersion blender or a regular blender to zip down the cooked veggies into a pureé. If using the countertop blender, be sure to hold the lid in place with a towel.

Zucchini Bisque
(page 89, Forks Over Knives)

1 medium Yellow Onion, peeled and finely chopped
4 medium Zucchini, finely chopped (I removed the seeds. They're no fun to eat.)
2 cups Vegetable Stock/Broth
1/2 teaspoon Thyme (I used what I had on-hand, dried.)
1/4 Nutmeg
Zest from one Lemon
1 cup Unsweetened Plain Almond Milk (Or any milk or cream.)
S&P, to taste
**optional: olive oil
  • Sauté onion in a large saucepan over medium heat 7-8 minutes or until onions are tender. Use either the dry sauté method with 1-2 tablespoons of water, at a time to keep onions from sticking to the pan OR use the same amount of olive oil.
  • Add zucs, veggie stock, thyme, nutmeg and lemon zest and cook until zucs are tender.
  • Pureé soup using the immersion blender or in smaller batches in the countertop blender.
  • Return pureé to pot, add milk and salt and pepper. 
  • Cook until heated through.

Serve hot with croutons or a crusty bread!