Into 2013

[Armstrong Woods, December 2012.]

In early January, the wish to eat green things: tonight, a salad with arugula, quinoa, apples, roasted sweet potatoes, sunflower seeds. Cauliflower soup without dairy. Impatiently awaiting the Saturday farmers’ market for clementines, tangerines, winter greens, butternut squash. We always eat well in my family and the holidays are no exception, but here on the other side I am especially craving vegetables, whole grains, fresh things, fruit, less cheese.

10 days away from computer and apartment and it flew past in a blur. Two weeks ago we were preparing for Kurt and Emily’s visit; now they are back in Maine and back to work. We drove in to the city from Pt. Reyes this morning at 7:30 in bright sun, quietly sipping the first Toby’s coffee of the year. The fields near the reservoir were shining with frost and the reservoir itself is full. No drought this summer – but then, I will not really be here to experience it. Once home I bundled up the tree and now there is more space again – to dust! But also to keep free, I hope. Clutter is my bane and I perpetually fight a battle against it.

[Kelham Beach, Point Reyes National Seashore, January 2013.]

The holidays this year were as lovely as they always are, and as always they went by far too quickly. There were many good meals, many cups of coffee at Hardcore Espresso near my parents’ house and also at Taylor Maid in town, a few ping-pong games, lots of runs on the back roads, some swims at Ives Pool and walks in the redwoods. I cooked a bit, but mostly ate my mom’s delicious feasts and the subsequent leftovers which lasted us for days. After the last batch I dragged up some inspiration to make for New Year’s Eve dinner: seared scallops, mushroom risotto brought back from Italy, roasted cauliflower, salad. We were asleep by 11 (though awoken by someone wailing away on his horn at midnight – in Inverness!) and up early to fortify ourselves with cornmeal-berry pancakes, scrambled eggs, coffee. We had a huge hike through the Seashore in the sun and truly it was the best way to start the new year. Later home for: roasted cornish hen (tofu for me), scalloped potatoes, creamed spinach, sparkling wine.

Now in the new year I want time to slow down. I know it will race away from me and soon it will be July and we will leave. I do not have any real resolves this year other than to try to keep an open mind about the move; to work very hard to make my cookbook the best it can be; to make and incorporate into my ‘meal repertoire’ some new dishes; to take days off here and there if I need them; to try to be in the moment as much as possible. Little things, and I hope I can find a way to them.

To that end, I have a recipe for an odds and ends soup I threw together before the rush of Christmas descended and which I’m still wishing for. Sharing it here tomorrow will no doubt be the push I need to make it again.

Happiest of new years to you all.

Join the Conversation

  1. Leslie Cohen says:

    Happy New Year, Nicole! Glad it began so beautifully for you and yours. Wishing you more of the same for 2013!

  2. All those meals sound yummy. And that photo of the water? So beautiful. Here’s to a 2013 where we can find a way to be in the moment, over and over and over again.

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