As the sweetest holiday approaches, I get more and more excited. Where to go for dinner? What to wear? What present to buy? While choosing a romantic vegan restaurant (or at least the one that is willing to make changes per our usual request) is not a big problem, the question of dessert is yet open.
Creating new recipes is an exciting and even magical experience. Am I going to like it? Did I write all the measurements precisely? Is it going to look pretty? When I create a new recipe, I feel that I have a newborn on my hands, and I want to share my joy with everyone. J However, sometimes it is just as much fun to give new life to an old recipe as it is to create a new one. For example, Slavic cooking traditions have a great number of amazing recipes that have simply been forgotten. The world demands creativity, even though sometimes there is no need to create a bicycle all over again.
My Sunday a few weeks ago was sweet in a very literal sense of the word. I attended the second day of a two-day chocolate festival in the Northwest. It was so much fun, guys!
Let’s continue our list with two more major points.
As summer ended, I found it difficult to stay motivated and stick to my exercise routine and diet. Lacking energy, craving sweets, and as a result, not getting all needed nutrition made me feel even more powerless and guilty. The way to fuel my body and keep my cravings under control was out there somewhere—I just was not able to see it. Then, completely by mistake, I soaked dates instead of dried figs to make my favorite stuffed figs candies. Obviously, I had an urgent need to use them somehow—and this recipe came alive.
My relationships with coffee were always pretty tight. I started drinking it when I was at school and then continued all the way through university. There is a part of me that truly believes that coffee may have been the reason I was able to navigate between classes and part-time jobs during all five years while working on my degrees. Somewhere around that time, I understood that caffeine had stopped affecting me the way it affected others and my love for coffee continued on the basis of comfort and routine. And sometimes there were weeks when I had a menu consisting of seven to nine cups of coffee a day (I guess such revelations are actually needed to explain why I decided to change my life style and how damn difficult it was). Luckily, those days are long gone and today I enjoy mostly good quality decaffeinated coffee or regular ones a few times a week.
The very first thing sports trainers and dietitians teach their clients who want to lose weight is to cut off sweets, which makes total sense. Nevertheless, not every one of them suggests the alternatives that can actually satisfy the cravings and have some healthy impacts on a person’s look, physical and mental wellbeing.
I love when my friends from out of the state come to visit. First of all, it is ‘long time no see’ kind of excitement, a lot of giggling, sharing, food tasting, and walking. Second, and just as much enjoyable, I have a perfect excuse to do things that the locals barely do: visit the city’s most known places! Those who live near the ocean will understand me because, against the common belief, they enjoy ‘beach days’ pretty rarely, just as those who live near forests and national parks barely hike the same trails over and over again. I think it is due to the lack of time, the desire to find new attention-grabbing spots, and the need to avoid crowds. I definitely can add one more reason: getting used to seeing the same thing (even a truly fascinating one) makes its charm faint. So every time I go up the Space Needle is really special because I do it so infrequently.
I am asked these questions very often: “Where do you find time for cooking? Do you really enjoy it? Wouldn’t you rather be spending time doing something fun than chopping and baking?” I wish I had a dollar every time I tried to explain that making dishes can be fun and relaxing and that it plays such an important role in my family’s physical and mental health. Check it out yourself!