Monday, May 25, 2009

Comfort Food: Pasta, EVOO, Ice Cream & Balsamic Vinegar

Comfort Food: Pasta, EVOO, Ice Cream with Berries & Balsamic Vinegar

Today is Memorial Day but it doesn't seem like a holiday. It came too soon this year. Instead of the usual crowd of tourists and heat at Lake Tahoe, it is quiet. It is calm. It is like a quiet Monday. As usual, I hit the resort swimming pool and swam laps...the hot tub was hot and comforting, too.

The wildflowers and aspen trees, another comforter, are blooming everywhere I look. But the birds, my favorite Blue jays are scarce as are the nocturnal raccoons and I don't know why. New potted plants--basil, parsley, thyme, sage, mint--Boston ferns surround me and make me smile. And the Lake is not plentiful with boats and people--that is comforting, too.

The sky is gray. A thunderstorm and showers is forecasted. It's cool outside. Indoors I'm craving comfort food--wholesome fare with a Mediterranean flair. I whipped up hot pasta--the recipe is in my book The Healing Powers of Olive Oil--(page 229) Angel Hair Pasta with Diced Tomatoes, Edamame Beans, Basil, and Virgin Olive Oil, created by Chef Michel Stroot. (It was fun to use my own basil.) And yes, berries are still on my brain. Later, a scoop of all-natural French vanilla ice cream , topped with fresh and sweet blueberries and strawberries (like the memorable sounds of the Beatles' song Strawberry Fields Forever) is going to soothe my spirit and soul.

And last but not least, I'm finally going to make that fire (and cuddle up with the warm and loving Brittany duo) because it's chilly outside. Recap: A crackling fire, a bowl of berries with ice cream drizzled with a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar and garnished with a sprig of fresh mint (ah, the genuine comfort of having your own herbs outdoors) will comfort me (or you) along with a comfort movie or two.

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