I'm sitting here procrastinating work, just so we're clear here. I'm using you to prolong actual work. But after a conversation I just had I think maybe what this REALLY is all about is a desire to play or at least approach words a bit more freely here.
I know I'm justifying procrastination, but there's truth there too.
August is a landslide of change. My teacher man heads back to the classroom, our schedules flex and fill in more ridgid ways. This year, my son goes to public school...I hold that truth at arms length. But there it all is, looming. He turns 6 in a couple of weeks. I turn 38 a few days before that. So August always seems to pummel me a bit with shifting and incessant full-feeling.
But with that comes an adrenal pulse. My eyes open a fraction wider, I'm well aware of my heart in my chest, I'm awake again. But really longing for the pillowy freedom of summer. But ahead we go, like it or not. Change is a coming, the milk expires after Silas is in school and I'm older and "normal" is back.
But I need the mess to be boxed in--spiritually, socially, emotionally. I've always felt the most me when I can have a room with nice straight and steady walls and space within to be free. Free and un-free all at once. Summer's flexibility breeds too much laziness in me, too much free time to waste. I gotta have a schedule and a deadline, and I don't seem to have the wherewithal to self impose.
But in my freedom, I found this recipe that you should make as soon as possible. MAKE THIS I say, because it's surprising and delicious and needs to be shared because it makes so much. It's bright and tart and sweet and crunchy and just so good. It has nothing to do with August or anything but I found it was an excellent catalyst for having some friends over and therefore forcing me to hurricane around the house cleaning and straightening. May it wake you up to a new season or meal or gathering.
Here's a picture my friend Deb took of her leftovers of our communal meal, just in case a picture of carrot salad gives you some reference:
There's a bunch of fiddly chopping involved. The pistachios especially irked me. Use it as mediation time, or like I did the first time I made it, make it with friends (like Deb). DO IT.
4 cups grated carrots (I just grated a bag of whole carrots from the store)
1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
7 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped
4 green onions, white and green parts, chopped
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons olive oil
zest and juice of 2 limes
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon tumeric
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup shelled roasted pistachios, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (let's be real--I made this twice and forgot the cheese both times. Didn't miss it, for what it's worth)
- In a large bowl, combine the carrots, garbanzo beans, chopped dates, green onions, cilantro and chopped pistachios.
- In another bowl, whisk together olive oil, zest and juice of limes, cumin, nutmeg, turmeric, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.
- Pour the dressing over the carrot mixture and toss to coat. Sprinkle in the feta cheese and toss lightly. Or forget to add the cheese
- Serve immediately or cover and chill in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Adapted from Sara Forte, Sprouted Kitchen