Saturday, April 16, 2011

Random Saturday Too

After shuffling around all morning, sneezing and sniffling and coughing and wondering why on earth I slept ten hours last night and still felt tired, it suddenly dawned on me that I may have a slight cold.

So, there was that, and then it's been cloudy and its supposed to be windy and rainy tonight.  I finished a huge bout of grading that began sometime over a week ago... my calendar tells me that two of my classes had papers due on the 6th, so that must have been when the maelstrom began.

Anyway, that's done.

I'm trying to finish up all the odds and ends of reading I have to do.  As Virginia Woolf once quipped, "In heaven, there will always be too much to read."  I think that's the case right here on earth, actually.

Believe it or not, I have one more mitten left to finish.  I know.  I have to stop.  I will have made three pairs of the Fiddlehead mittens.  (I gave one pair to my best friend.)

I'll admit that, for a while, I simply couldn't stop.

If you had dropped by, you might very well have found me desperately trying to hide the yarn balls rolling all over the place, needles hanging from my hands, somewhere between euphoria and obsession, babbling constantly about mittens and insisting that I was "fine."

I'm better now.  (Relatively speaking.)

I found some cool ringtones via The Center for Biological Diversity.  If you want your cell phone to sound like an endangered frog or a cheetah when it rings, this is the place to go.

I'm doing my favorite cool-and-cloudy-day thing right now: cooking.  It's one of my favorite recipes too, so it is very good to be me (or maybe to just be in my house), because I'm basking in the smells of oregano and chili and cumin and fennel and garlic.

It's Giada De Laurentis' recipe for White Bean and Chicken Chili and I like it because it's not your typical red/brown chili (which is also good).  Whip up a batch of Giada's chili, and you are SET.  (I use spinach instead of swiss chard, though.)

For the vegetarians out there... well, I'm sorry.  I think you could make it with shredded tofu instead of the meat (I've done that with regular chili and it's not bad) or you could try seitan, cut into small pieces.

Personally, I refuse to alter my favorite chili recipe in that way.  I just won't do it.  It won't taste good to me, even if it purportedly is.  One is only a virgin once.

Generally, I prefer to keep my meat dishes meat dishes and my veggie dishes veggie dishes.  I find that when veggie/vegans try to replicate meat-based recipes and insist that they "taste exactly the same-- or even better," they strike me as being in some kind of serious, sad, food-based denial.

Or else they haven't had the meat-based dish in a while, so they've forgotten what it's supposed to taste like.  (Ummmm.... yeah, not like that.)

I know, I know.  I'm here wanting Ken Salazar fired for what he's doing and I'm whipping up a batch of chili made with... animals.

Total hypocrisy alert.

But not doing dairy?  I just can't fathom it.  I look at recipes for vegan baked goods and desserts and I just think, "WHY? Why would you DO that to something as wonderful as dessert?"

If that's what you're going to do, just have a piece of fruit... but leave cream cheese frosting ALONE.  I'm begging you.

To me, life is just too damn short to forgo cheese and yogurt.  No one ever said that kind of penance was necessary.  If that's the price of sainthood, count me out.  (I was kind of out of the running anyway.)

And I'm quite certain the chickens want me to use eggs.  I asked, and they said they didn't mind.

I even asked, "Are you sure?" and they said, "Totally."

And yes, I know that if I saw what they do to the animals, I wouldn't want to eat meat.

I actually go through lengthy phases of general vegetarianism, but at the end of the day, I just can't commit. 

I'm actually more vegetarian when I identify myself as meat-eater, if that makes any sense.  I will go weeks without eating meat, but if someone says "You should be vegetarian, it's unethical to eat meat," I'll go cook a chicken, just because I really don't like being told what to do.

And then I'll end up feeling pissed off because that means I'm unethical and immature.

Anyway, my point is, there are some truly awesome vegetarian dishes out there, and vegetarians and vegans have no need to try to concoct recipes that replicate the immoral tastes of meat-eaters.

When I need to pull out all the stops, I make a Moroccan Spiced Pie.  If you're a vegetarian, that's how you'll know I love you.

Okay, now I'm feeling like I need to go start guilt-tripping some friends into visiting me.  I haven't cooked a major feast since my birthday, and there's something very wrong with that...

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Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote, "Life is short, but there is always time for courtesy."