That is, in fact, pretty much how I feel every time I sit down to read. I love reading, but also have sort of grown to hate it. Reading is a lonely activity. And, just as when I was 8, 9, 10...I am alone so much of time. I'd rather be around people, laughing and talking and dancing or whatever. I can remember, with perfect clarity, the last time that I really, really enjoyed reading. I was in bed with a boyfriend. It was summer. We were both wearing enormous band t-shirts, tanned, tired, and relishing the fan's cooling breezes as we sipped iced tea, read our big novels (Umberto Eco writes more than theory) and soaked in the warm, sweet smell coming in through the open windows. Some people aren't very good at reading in tandem, but this particular ex was excellent at it. He never interrupted, except to press feet or offer a tea refill or occasionally get up leaving with nary a word, just one of those back of the head kisses that some people are so good at giving. It was like reading was quality time that we spent together, we'd often wake up after a good night in bed with books and talk about the stories spinning in our heads over decadent home-made brunches. While most of our relationship was rather lackluster, I miss the reading and hope to someday meet someone with whom I can read again.
I've been making a concerted effort to do things I like to do more often, namely going to shows. In the last two weeks I've seen Deerhunter and Four Tet, both of which are musical acts that get deep into my bones and rattle my muscles and clear my head only to fill it with big imaginings. Tuesday, my lovely friend Rachel and I are going to see Gary Numan. I anticipate that we will have an excellent time.
Anyway, in preparation for attempting to blog 5 days a week this November as part of VeganMoFo, I'm trying to warm back up to the blog. I've been busy and abnormally sleepy and eating a lot of salads, so I haven't had much to share on the food front. Though, as the weather gets cooler, my Irv and Shelly's box becomes more heavy with squash and I recently re-visited one of my absolute favorite recipes: Madhur Jaffrey's Chickpea, Pumpkin and Raisin Stew. It might be in my top five favorite things to eat. I mean...just look at it, even in a terrible iPhone photo it's a sight to behold and it is JAM-packed with nutritious and delicious and the recipe makes a lot, like enough to serve 8. So, no arguing, make this instead of a pie the next time you find yourself puzzling over a sugar pumpkin. I serve it with a rose-scented cous cous which I think really takes the whole thing to the next level. In fact, its so good that I challenge you to eat just one bowl. I'm pretty sure that its impossible.
Chickpea, Pumpkin and Raisin Stew (Very slightly adapted from World Vegetarian)
1 box instant cous cous
2 cups filtered water
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup shelled roasted and salted pistachios
1 t rosewater
1 T olive oil
1 handfull chopped parsley (or mint)
Bring the water and oil to a boil in a small pan. Remove from the heat and add the cous cous and raisins. Cover and let sit for 5 minutes until cous cous is cooked. Add the rose water and then fluff with a fork and garnish with nuts and parsely.