what’s cooking-coconut veggie curry

The weather in Louisville is finally cooling off. We’ve had highs in the sixties and lows in the fifties, and the need for hot, delicious food is sprouting up in me. Must. Make. Soups.

And curries! Which led me here:

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It’s been a quiet week in our apartment where we have left the windows open, cooked a lot of good food, and spent evenings just sitting around talking to each other.

I hurt my back somehow (meaning I did some ill-fated burpees) and have stayed home from work with a heating pad and a tendency to whine the last two days. The Lord blessed me so abundantly this morning, though. Bon Iver, one of my favorite musicians released his new album. I slid through it three times without really trying. I sat in my car outside the library, waiting for it to open, scribbling prayers in a little notebook as rain sprinkled my windshield, listening to 22, A Million, his voice more about the sound than the actual lyrics.

I’m thinking you can give the album a try (maybe even listen to the npr review to get your blood pumping about pressing play) and make the curry at the same time.

I found the recipe on Cookie and Kate, and I appreciated it’s simplicity and variety of vegetables.

It was a one dish meal where you chopped, sauteed, and added the curry ingredients.

Let me know if you make it! Happy cooking!

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what’s cooking- coconut chicken

A couple of years ago, when I was a college student spending roughly $30-40 on groceries on week, my dad offered to let me pick a few recipes for us to make together. I picked this coconut shrimp recipe I had pinned ages before.

I used a recipe from howsweeteats.com called crunchy coconut chicken fingers (with peach honey mustard), and we toiled in the kitchen for waaaaaay longer than it should have taken. I felt like it was time to try it again, especially because my husband grew up on chicken fingers.

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I’m at the point now where I’m just proud of myself for actually making some of the recipes I pin, and I’m not developing my own unless you count me substituting breadcrumbs for panko because that’s what I have. (That doesn’t count, btw. At least I think. Try as I might, I haven’t found a code of conduct for blog etiquette.)

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We paired the chicken with a 50/50 spring mix and greens with sliced tomatoes, avocado, and onion, drizzled in Ken’s Steakhouse Light Options Honey Mustard. I couldn’t get a proper picture of the salad before Will devoured it, but that combination is our go-to for side salads. This is how I feel about that honey mustard dressing, though. I wish I had vats of it.

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Give the recipe a try and let me know if you like it! It’s coconutty and moist and delish.

 

 

lifestyle- slowing down and unplugging

I mentioned in my about me that Will started reading Deep Work by Cal Newport and that I swiped it a few evenings and read the first 50 pages so far. (“I will finish it!!!!” she cries looking at the mountain of books on her nightstand.)

 

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The book talks about working deeply, meaning really focusing on what you are doing while you are doing it distraction-free, and not being afraid to give things your best shot instead of trying to multitask and cobble together a project. I was very drawn to the concept of unplugging and working distraction-free because I can get frantically caught up in checking my email, checking my phone, and stop working mid-sentence to clean the top of the dresser. I want to do everything well so much that I have a hard time focusing on the task at hand. 

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I take a lot of comfort in God seeing the intentions of my heart. I think about the act of Samuel anointing a new king while the old one is still living. I think about God taking him to Jesse’s house and seeing David’s older brother who looks like a king should look and God says, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” He looks inside of me and sees how I long to please Him even when I fall short. He knows that in my heart I didn’t mean to offend my mom or waste money on an abandoned project. I take so, so much comfort in that. I know that He knows me no matter what. 

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With that kind of love, I know that I can put aside my people-pleasing and try to listen to Him. I can work with focus not because I need to remain relevant in this economy (sorry, Cal Newport) but because God is asking me to work for Him and with Him and not check my email 40 times a day for no reason. I’m not even a CEO or anything, just a girl who acts like tracking her package from Loft is the most important thing in the world.

I have three resources to recommend for creating boundaries for yourself online and on your phone.

Stay Focused

Plug-in for chrome that allows you to blacklist sites after spending a cumulative amount of time on them. I have Facebook, Pinterest, Ebth, eBay, Loft, YouTube, and Craigslist on this list because those are my weaknesses.

Freedom

App for Windows computers and Macs and iPhones that blocks certain sites for a small (~$3) monthly fee.

App Detox

App for Android phones that allows you to create rules for certain apps. I have it set so that I can only check my email 5 times a day, I can only spend 10 minutes on the Pinterest app, and I can only spend 10 minutes on the Chrome app a day, too. Will even has this passcode so I am not tempted to cheat.

How do you focus on doing something well? Has God taught you about disciplining yourself?

 

 

what’s cooking? – smoked salmon sushi

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When I was teaching sixth grade English last year, I always always wanted to go out on Friday night. We lived yards away from this cheap Greek restaurant, and Will would make me get out of bed (where I immediately took refuge when I walked in the door from work) and we would comb through Zomato until we would be so hungry that we would walk down to the Greek restaurant and get gyros or a hamburger.

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Now that I am nannying, I actually feel up to getting dinner together at home since I come home before Will. Will and I have hardly eaten out in Louisville even though there are so many great restaurants. This sushi has been our Friday choice a few times already.

Of course, we would love to make spicy tuna sushi, but when I called around to different markets, the sushi grade tuna was waaaaaay out of grocery budget. So, I found this smoked salmon at Kroger for less that $4.

Check out the recipe on Allrecipes and enjoy eating in.

 

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As you can see from our pictures, we like to add significantly more to our rolls than what it pictured in the Allrecipes page. I like my sushi fully loaded.

What have you been cooking up recently? Did you give the sushi a try?

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re: will

This morning, Will woke up with a very irritated eye. Will and I both have low pain tolerances and try to outdo each other in being dramatic when something is wrong.

After a quick internet search— “scratched eye treatment”— I found out that you need to wait for it to heal. So, I tried comforting Will with my words.

“Worse case scenario: you lose one eye. You still have the other one.”

“But I need the other one.”

“For what?”

“Lookin'”

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So this is happening. Happy Sunday! May your eyes be perfectly moisturized, your eggs not burnt, and your Donkey Kong game on point.

 

 

what i’m reading

Does anyone else dream of applying to a creative writing program and having what you thought was good writing torn to pieces only to be reborn as a voice of your generation? Anyone?

Well, in that dream, Marilynne Robinson is my teacher. I’m reading Housekeeping, or rather, I used Louisville’s library app and downloaded the audiobook, so I’m listening to Housekeeping. In it, two young girls get shuffled from their mother to their grandmother to two great aunts, and finally to Sylvie, their aunt. housekeeping

It sounds strange to talk about the plot, though, because the whole mood of the book is much more striking than what happens. As only an expert storyteller can, we get swept up in the town, the mystical lake the grandfather died in, the air coming in through the open windows, the smell of the sheets drying on the line, the drama between the bright sunshine of the day and the opaque darkness of the night.

It’s slow. It’s beautiful. It’s definitely something to read before bed snuggled up in that J.Jill dress you bought on sale that kind of looks like a giant dishcloth.

 

There it is! Write what you know! Which means the following blog posts I write will center on cats, bagels, and Kroger.