Monthly Archives: May 2011

meatless monday: massaged kale salad

Happy post-Memorial Day weekend! We just returned from a lovely low-key weekend in East Hampton with friends. Many of you know that in a past life I spent some time out there, creating inventory numbers and taking dimensions of important contemporary furniture and art (and occasionally driving a rental car stuffed full of expensive bath towels into the city, don’t ask). But until this weekend, I’d never experienced what the Hamptons were truly meant for: walks on the beach, napping in the sun with the latest New Yorker, berries on the patio.


You see the appeal, no?

As we drove east and further from the concrete madness I was inspired by the roadside produce stands boasting the latest Long Island offerings. With that, I present a simple kale salad. Massaging the kale is key to soften up the toughness, so don’t forget this crucial step! Enjoy.

Massaged Kale Salad
Bunch of kale, washed and cut into thin strips
1 lemon
2-3 garlic cloves, pressed
olive oil
young sweet carrots, cut into thin coins
1 avocado, cubed

Combine juice of the lemon with garlic cloves and olive oil. Add kale and massage with your hands until kale is nicely wilted and soft. Add carrot and avocado cubes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.


wednesday wisdom

Curiosity will conquer fear even more than bravery will.
  – James Stephens, Irish poet

meatless monday: bean burgers, bittman style

bittman's bean burger, garnished with cheddar and sprouts. image by kelly schmidt.

It’s barbecue season, people! Don’t celebrate Memorial Day Weekend without a meatless option for you and yours…try Mark Bittman’s simple bean burgers. Recipe via Mint Demode. So put on your whitest whites, flippy floppies, and get outside!

Mark Bittman’s Simple Bean Burgers
14-oz. can of beans, drained (black, garbanzo, white, lentils)
1 small onion, quartered
1/2 c. rolled oats
1 tbsp. chili powder or spice mix of your choice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 egg
1 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Combine the beans, onion, parmesan cheese, oats, chili powder, salt, pepper, and egg in a food processor and pulse until chunky but not puréed, adding a little liquid if necessary. With wet hands, shape into whatever size patties you want (You can make the burger mixture or even shape the burgers up to a day or so in advance-just cover tightly and refrigerate). Bring everything back to room temperature before cooking. Film the bottom of a large nonstick or well-seasoned cast-iron skillet with oil and turn the heat to medium. Cook until nicely browned on one side, about 5 min.; turn carefully and cook on the other side until firm and browned. You can refrigerate or freeze any extras for later use.

two years later: remembering guruji

Sharath Jois and Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, 1992

My teacher Eddie wrote an article for Namarupa Magazine in anticipation for today: the two-year anniversary of the death of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, called Guruji by his devotees. This anniversary is significant to me, not only as someone who studies and practices the Ashtanga lineage (which Guruji taught and made accessible to all), but also because it was exactly two years ago that my curiosity about Ashtanga piqued. In May 2009, I bought David Swenson‘s step-by-step instruction manual and began practicing in my tiny apartment. Soon after I found myself at Ashtanga Yoga New York, practicing daily with other Ashtangis and learning from one of Guruji’s original students.

Mysore, 2010: a post-practice treat of pressed sugarcane, sweet lime and ginger

Read Eddie Stern’s poignant article here, which sheds light on how Guruji learned yoga, and then learned to teach yoga. On this particular day, I’m reminded of the power of transmitting knowledge, sincerity, and compassion through the teacher/student relationship. Ashtanga has taught me many things, about the power of discipline, my tendency toward impatience, and about my hamstrings. I’m eternally grateful to Guruji, his family, and the devoted Ashtangis committed to this lineage.

I am teaching this ancient yoga to you, this day, since you are my friend and devotee. This secret is supreme indeed. (Bhagavad Gita 4.3)

wednesday wisdom

People call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that distinguish me from a doormat.
Rebecca West, age 20, 1913

meatless monday: creamy avocado pasta

Last week Saveur announced their finalists in their 2nd Annual Best Food Blog Awards. I happily bookmarked that page for perusing on a rainy day (lo and behold, today is that day! Dreary, awful day!). There are so many incredible food blogs out there, and I was delighted to find some great new vegan/vegetarian blogs being honored in the “Best Special Interest Blog” category. And don’t even get me started on the “Best Culinary Travel Blog” category. Souvlaki for the Soul? Great name! Momofuku for Two? Yes please!

But. I digress. An amazing looking recipe from Oh She Glows, a vegan blog, will be attempted tonight: 15 Minute Creamy Avocado Pasta. The avocado makes it creamy, the lemon/garlic combo makes it zesty, the pasta makes it a meal.

look at it! beautiful!

Gorgeous and simple, right? Right! I’m so excited to actually have all of the above ingredients on hand already.

15 Minute Creamy Avocado Pasta
1 medium ripe avocado, pitted
1/2 lemon, juiced + lemon zest to garnish
2-3 garlic cloves, to taste
1/2 tsp. kosher salt, or to taste
1/4 c. fresh basil
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
6 oz of your choice of pasta (whole wheat or kamut sounds nice)
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Cook your pasta as directed until al dente. Meanwhile, make the sauce by placing garlic cloves, lemon juice, and olive oil into a food processor. Process until smooth. Now add in the pitted avocado, basil, and salt. Process until smooth and creamy. When pasta is done cooking, drain and rinse in a strainer and place in a large bowl. Pour on sauce and toss until fully combined. Garnish with lemon zest and black pepper. Serve immediately. Makes 2 servings. NOTE: This dish does not reheat well due to the avocado in the sauce.

wednesday wisdom: yoga sutra 1.2 – three contemporary translations.

a real live lotus pond at Harmony Healing Centre, Nosara, Costa Rica

योग: चित्त-वृत्ति निरोध:
yogaś citta-vṛtti-nirodhaḥ (Yoga Sutra 1.2)

Yoga is the stilling of the changing states of the mind. (Edwin Bryant)

If the restraint of the mental modifications is achieved one has reached the goal of Yoga. (Sri Swami Satchidananda)

Bitch – you are captive of your own tempest of twisting thoughts and emotions, and you don’t even know it! Learn how to calm your shit down. (Bernadette Birney)