Ever since I was introduced to Dylan, I felt he sang my tune and sang it true.
A fellow writer recently said that we "have the opportunity to take all that is human and put it into words for others to relate..." How beautiful is that, and certainly Dylan is up there with the very best of them. Inspiration is magical.
As for me, I'm going to put my best pen forward this year along with my other healthy appendages, for which I'm immeasurably grateful. I approached this first day of the year with no tastebuds on my tongue (an on-again, off-again cold has wreaked havoc on my olfactory senses these past couple of months), but with a healthy appetite for gratitude and adventure.
What a year we're going to have!
After your spoonful or two of black-eyed peas for good luck, I suggest dipping into a healthy, delicious soup, such as the one that follows below.
And here they've been roasted perhaps a few minutes too long. Festering and sweltering, they look awfully grumpy. Flip them over, however, and they yield the most vibrant, vivacious flesh beneath that wrinkly skin.
nonstick olive oil spray
2 lb butternut squash
1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped carrots
2 garlic cloves, chopped
6 cups vegetable broth
1 tsp cumin
1 cup canned black beans, rinsed, drained
1 cup frozen corn kernels
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp minced seeded serrano chili
1 avocado, sliced
Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray baking sheet with nonstick spray, sprinkle halves of squash with salt and pepper. Place cut side down on baking sheet. Roast squash until tender, about 1 hour. Scoop squash into medium bowl and set aside.
Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add onion and saute until pale golden, about 8 min.
Mix in celery, carrots, and garlic; then add 1 cup broth. Cover and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add squash, 5 cups broth and cumin. Cover and simmer 20 minutes to blend flavors.
Puree soup using immersion blender (or regular blender) until smooth. Add black beans, corn, bell pepper, cilantro, thyme and serrano chili. Cover and simmer 10 minutes
Season to taste with salt & pepper and top servings with sliced avocado.
I hope everyone had a pleasant, peaceful holiday...I'm so looking forward to the new year and all its undeniable changes. My one resolution is to do my best to not let a minute slip by in vain, to no longer jump to the future when I belong in the present. When the clock says 9:54, let's not say it's 10:00 and give up those precious minutes. We never know how many we have left, so let's consciously live each one.