Very rewarding, very gratifying, but it brought up so much stuff for me, I think I need another 100 years of therapy.
So it’s Friday and I’m still a mess. I self medicate in my kitchen, cooking and baking and crying. (I’m thinking my challa may have been a little salty.) Professionals in the field like to call it “self-soothe”. Me, I like the way self medicate sounds. I cook, I bake, I take pictures, I share them - with you... Your welcome.
Freida, my 4 year old made a number of challas from the same piece of dough. After each completion, she gingerly placed it on the tray and within seconds was falling apart about a do-over. (hence, reason #4).
|Challa #1: a rosh hashana challa|
Challa #2: Yes, all by herself.
|Challa #3. Final attempt. "Look Mommy, I made a helicopter." Hmmmm.|
|My standard little knots. Notice the empty space? That's where Freida's challa kept going.|
In between the shaped challas rising and baking, I start a cookie dough. I'm feeling sorry for myself so I make my neiman marcusesque cookies.
While the cookies were baking I cooked up some chick peas with cilantro, garlic, olive oil and paprika.
|I prep the chicken with lemon, rosemary, garlic, homemade olives and cumin.|
I put some jam into a sandwich sized ziploc bag and snip the corner off. I am squeezing with my left hand, taking pix with my right hand. It's one heavy camera, that Canon 60D, I am so capable. Freida approves of these cookies. Whew.
When the fish patties are done I prepare the snapper. I dredge it lightly in flour and fry until golden. I sprinkle it with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. This is a delicious dish if you can get it really fresh. Don't buy previously frozen snapper. It stinks.
I'm sure I've mentioned this before - Pinny is a fabulous cook. He's creative, experimental, persistent and messy. He gets back to his sourdough as I'm finishing up with the fish. Pinny takes up a lot of kitchen when he cooks, and I take up the whole kitchen so we try and pace ourselves. He is learning to come do his thing before the housekeeper cleans up after me. This is a learning process. He used to wait for a clean kitchen...
Pinny takes his dough very seriously. He shapes some into loaves, rounds and then the awesome sesame braids. He rolls each strand into sesame seeds before braiding. Then he coats the whole braid with sesame seeds again. Yum.
I'm having a hard time here choosing pictures. There are 105 pictures of the bread process and I don't know what to do. Don't judge me, I told you I was having a hard day.
|--can I just say that this was harder than choosing pictures for my wedding album--|
The breads rise, their tops are scored and they make their way into the oven.
During the first 15 minutes of the baking process, the oven door is opened frequently and water is sprayed. This creates a steam, and I'm not totally sure what the purpose is, but the bread is delicious. Don't try this with pyrex or other glassware. We did and it took hours to clean up the mess.
I took 581 pictures, but somehow, lots of other food didn't get photographed. Roasted eggplant salad with garlic, tahini, baba-tahini, fennel salad with granny smith apples and citrus marinade, roasted golden and chiogga beets, roasted cauliflower, red quinoa salad with zucchini and red onions, green goddess dressing, miso dressing, and chicken soup. I think that's all. I took a picture of my fridge. It's rather messy though. Wanna see it?
Hey, thanks for listening. I'm feeling better already. Why did I eat all that cookie dough?
And my emotional state, well that takes a little more effort. Applied mindfulness. Tapping into the feelings that I'm afraid of. Acknowledging them. Validating them. Giving them space to grow and ultimately, to be released. When I find it challenging to provide self care, I find comfort in being creative, by playing with food, with dough, with the camera. I recognize that therapeutic activity is a substitute, a temporary fill in, one that I am grateful for. It's a tool that helps create a space in which I can ultimately address that which is plaguing my soul.
To good health,