09 November 2010


i don't often venture into the center of the city... not that it's so far away... it just naturally repels me. every time i need to be there, especially if its in the middle of the day... i feel like all the dirt and fumes from the jam packed traffic are accumulating in my lungs. i dont like the feeling. i think thats one thing that growing up in west virginia and then moving to south carolina stayed with me. i get a little itchy to see something green. and the chewing gum wrapper the guy walking in front of me just nonchalantly threw onto the ground doesnt count. (thats a pet peeve of mine... seeing so many people throw their trash right onto the ground or out the window of the bus (probably on top of someones head) when theres a trash can not too far away.)

our neighborhood may still be in the city, and still have too much traffic for me to care for (noise), but at least there are a few trees and parks to trick you into thinking that your lungs arent in such bad shape. even if theres too much dog poo in the parks to even think about laying a blanket down there, if you got past caring about other people staring at you wondering what you were doing factor. 

today i had to go into the center for a few things. i had my list and my mission. on that list was to go to a book shop where they have lots of old books and magazines, mostly textbooks. i wanted to go there because ive had in my mind to make something like an art journal/scrapbook/keep recipes that Julton and I eat a lot.

something a little like that, which is a mix of collage art and "creative response" that i did for a psychology class in college (inside an old book).

weve (ive) been talking about doing it. talking and talking. and yesterday i was finally on track to get the book to get started... as i went into the shop there were two people working and following me and asking if i needed help. i told them i was just browsing and with that the man left the shop. as i moseyed around and found a couple books i liked i started to ask the price for them... one was too expensive for what i wanted to do with it... the other... "i don't know the owner didnt leave me a price for that one" i, assuming the owner was the man that had previously left said "and when will he return?" she replied... "i dont know, hes going to be a long time, he left for lunch" (with an, i dont really care tone in her voice) me.. annoyed because i wanted the book.. responded with "so... if i want to buy the book?? what am i supposed to do?" (with a hint of, just a hint!, of annoyance in my voice) she looked at me blankly and said "come back later" 

im not exactly sure what kind of chemical reaction happen in my body, because i usually dont react this way. but i got super annoyed and aggravated at the fact that she was content with not selling the book and telling me to come back later. i was thinking to myself "what kind of business is this?! there are all these books and i find the one that i need and i cant buy it??!" i quickly placed the book back in its place and rushed out the door. the girl asked when i return and i just looked at her surprised. i said i couldn't (which was just my reaction to the situation) and left. i might go back... another day... not anywhere near lunchtime. 

but my lunchtime... lets talk about that. its a happier subject. recently (especially today) my body has been screaming no to anything fried or anything in anyway related to meat. that happens sometimes. on those days, veggies make me really happy. and so does my favorite recipe since... forever ago. Pad Thai.  

it makes me really excited to see so many vegetables and fruits in the kitchen at one time.

today i changed up the recipe i usually use to make my pad thai, and added kaigwa.. a vegetable here thats like... umm.. well... the top right is what it looks like! (the seeds are a little scary)

since today was a "julton doesn't eat lunch at home day" day, it was perfect timing for my vegetable craving. i searched and searched for the one recipe that ive had in written form for years. (you can probably tell my the food stains) since i tried out being a vegetarian at the age of 16. its stuck around that long. i have no idea where it came from. i just know it came from some vegetarian website somewhere. the ingredients i use change each time i make it, and now sometimes (especially if with friends) involves chicken instead of tofu. but today was just me and vegetables, no chicken, no tofu. 

i sauteed half a red pepper, half a smallish eggplant, half a kaigwa, bean sprouts, green onion (that i didnt chop up, i cut them right where they start to turn dark green, and also slit them in half so that there were just big chunks of onion) also some broccoli (lightly steamed). 

all that gets sauteed with olive oil. then you add the (key) sauce:

1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup lime juice
1-2 Tbsp. peanut butter
1 tbsp. tahini 
(i never use tahini, even when i lived in the states.. sorry pad thai, sorry homemade hummus..)
2 green chilies ( i usually just add some spicy red powder that i can find)
1/4 cup sugar (i seem to always forget that part)

seeing all the things i forget or dont use, i realize that my actual Pad Thai probably doesnt taste anything like its supposed to. but it tastes exactly how i want it to. which is delicous. 

if i had had them i would have thrown in peanuts also. it adds a little something. and i always eat it with rice, or noodles. 

if you have never tried this dish, you really and most certainly should. then tell me what you think.



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