Sunday, December 7, 2008


I have learned
that life goes on,
or doesn't.
That days are measured out
in tiny increments
as a woman in a kitchen
measures teaspoons
of cinnamon, vanilla,
or half a cup of sugar
into a bowl.

I have learned
that moments are as precious as nutmeg,
and it has occurred to me
that busy interruptions
are like tiny grain moths,
or mice.
They nibble, pee, and poop,
or make their little worms and webs
until you have to throw out the good stuff
with the bad.

It took two deaths
and coming close myself
for me to learn
that there is not an infinite supply
of good things in the pantry.

by Pat Schneider from Another River: New and Selected Poems

Spicy Honey Roasted Cauliflower

Makes 8 servings

1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup whole grain mustard
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup chopped fresh herbs
2 garlic cloves, minced
generous 1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 -1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 whole heads cauliflower, trimmed and cleaned
Coarsely chopped fresh herbs

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the honey, mustard, butter, herbs, garlic, pepper, and salt in a small bowl. Set aside.
2. Use a long slim pairing knife to pierce the heart of each cauliflower stem. Place each head, stem side down, in a deep baking dish large enough to hold both heads. Add about 1/4-inch of hot water to the dish. Cover with foil. Bake 10 to 12 minutes (water will begin to steam). Remove foil. Carefully pour off water.
3. Increase oven temperature to 400 degrees and return cauliflower to the oven. Bake for 5 minutes to dry the heads. Remove from oven and coat well with the honey mixture (using a pastry brush makes this job easy). Return to oven. Roast 12 to 15 minutes or until the cauliflower heads are well browned. If desired, garnish with additional chopped fresh herbs.

*** Cauliflower is no shlub in the nutrition department. High in fiber, folate, and vitamin C, this vegetable is known to kick carcinogens to the curb (mostly by supporting liver function).
**Much like a human, a cauliflower can get fried or pickled. Then again, you can just eat these veggies raw, steamed, boiled, or (my favorite) roasted. Also like people, cauliflower comes in many colors and shapes. Orange cauliflower contains more Vitamin A than the white variety, while purple cauliflower contains the antioxidant group anthocyanin, which is also found in red wine. Green varieties are sometimes called brooccoflower (how clever) and the spiky green guys (more accurately called Romanesco) are examples of fractals, self repeating patterns, in nature.

*Because of it’s color and mouth feel, cauliflower is used to produce a potato substitute known as fauxtato – that’s quite a chuckle for me but perhaps not so funny for the low-carb dieter. I prefer that my cauliflower taste like cauliflower, thank you very much.
Recipe by Cristina Paul

Blah-Blah-Blahg: Food For Nought

Dear Santa,

All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth - in gold - and I shall call them Bling 1 and Bling 2

Oh and a couple of other things I wish I had include (but are not limited to):

*Hydraulics on my ride
*Mangos de manila in season in December
*A Cartier watch - specifically the Louis Cartier Tank Americain with a leather band
*A cheese cave
*An archery range in my backyard, which should also have plenty of space for a fresh herb garden and perhaps some night shades (which sounds so much cooler than just saying tomatoes, eggplants, and bell peppers)
*Shower heads on both sides of my shower, so one side of my body never gets cold and so I can comfortably take two-person showers
*An audition to be a back-up dancer in Beyoncé's next dance video
*A "manny", a male nanny, who does floors, windows, and toilets and will whisper encouraging things to me (with a heavy accent, of course) and occasionally pat me on the head
*An all-expense paid trip to Croatia
*Better wages for teachers and mandatory toilet cleaning and other miserable forms of janitorial work for all the schmucks who are currently running things within LAUSD

*A set of Petanque boules, along with an older French trainer with a loyalty to anger who can help me hone my skills and mutter indiscernable expletives

Thanks for hearing me out (not necessarily hearing, but reading),

(but you probably already know who this is since you seem to know every person's address and what's on their respective lists)

P.S. I will bake you a fine assortment of cookies if you should choose to humor me by granting any one of these requests

If you are not Santa and you are reading this, please post your own wish list as a comment! If we write, he will listen (or read, I guess).