Holiday Cheeseboard

I made a last minute run to the local grocery store for booze and came out with the fixins for this Thanksgiving inspired cheese board.


Mt. Tam Triple Cream from Cowgirl Creamery

Vintage Cheddar

Fig and almond cake



Cranberry crisp crackers


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African Pineapple Peanut Stew

Happy Meatless Monday all. I dug out an oldie but a goodie for this Monday. This recipe comes from the Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home cookbook my friend gave me a few years ago when she learned I had gone vegetarian.

The Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca, New York is well known for its vegetarian cuisine. I’ve never been there, but their cookbooks are a great staple for any vegetarian and vegan kitchen.

Enjoy this delicious stew. Let me know what you think.

1 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 bunch of kale or Swiss chard (4 cups sliced)
2 cups undrained canned crushed pineapple (20-ounce can)
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 tablespoon Tabasco or other hot pepper sauce
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
salt to taste
Garnish with crushed peanuts and scallions
African Pineapple Peanut Stew
Sauté the onions until slightly browned; about 5 minutes.


Add the pineapple and its juice to the onions and bring to a simmer.
Stir in the kale or chard, cover and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring a couple of times, until just tender.
Mix in the peanut butter, Tabasco, and cilantro (if using) and simmer for 5 minutes.
Add salt to taste, and serve. We served this over mixed grains, but the original recipe recommends serving it with rice, millet, or couscous. We have served it over polenta as well with great results.

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Me too, I guess

Yesterday, on my way to Los Angeles, I watched a man try to clear security with a cat in a duffel bag.

The man was asked to remove the cat from the bag because:

1) you can’t send a cat through the belt screener

2) TSA needed to scan the bag the cat was in.

The man objected to his removal of the cat because he and the cat had not been formally introduced, and to him, taking the cat out of the duffel bag didn’t feel appropriate.

TSA promptly guided the man and the bagged cat to a private room for a formal introduction and security check.

After the private screening, the man and the cat boarded the flight without further incident.

There is so much talk these days about what is and isn’t appropriate behavior in the corporate world, in Hollywood, and at home. And while the conversation is around male entitlement and power, it should also be about self awareness and context for both sexes.

Like the man with the cat in the duffel bag, if we all just took a moment to consider our next step and how that would play out in the context of the moment with our current audience, so much of this wouldn’t even happen. Because in so many cases, the intent in these terrible moments isn’t actually sinister, it is just fucking cluelessness.


It’s Hollow Back, Not Hollaback, Duh!

I see a lot of hollow back yoga poses on Instagram these days. Personally, I suspect it is because hollow back yoga seems more artistic (Instagramworthy) than your standard Iyengar alignment. I also suspect that hollow back asanas are easier for most yogis.

What’s hollow back you ask?

Hollow back is a yoga term (which means it is not at all clinical or scientific) that refers to the creations of extension in the lumbar spine. The lower spine has a natural curvature, but in hollow back versions of arm-balance yoga poses, like fore-arm-stand and handstand, that curvature is increased. 

If you want to get technical, most yoga postures call for a straight back or a stacked alignment meaning feet over knees over hips over shoulders over elbows over wrists. Straight up and down, none of this fancy curve crap.

Because our backs have natural curvature, the straight back posture requires infinitely more deep core work to achieve and is something that yogis like me will spend their lives working on.

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This is us, for now

Last night, while schlepping my toddler from house to house in the dark , I heard a kid tell a group of trick or treaters about a friend who, upon returning to his burned out house during the Santa Rosa wildfire, found the family dog, burned but alive and waiting for him where their front porch used to be.

I don’t know how true this story is and I lack the journalistic integrity to do any sort of fact checking. But for once, this isn’t a story about truth. It’s a story about where we are right now.

Right now, we are going through the motions; doing what we are expected to do, doing what is normal. But our minds are on the fire. Our minds are on the future. No one is here right now. Not really.

We are a community in mourning. Telling and retelling our stories about the fire. Waiting for the time when we tell the story about the fire that was long ago, and how it changed us for the better.