Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Three Beautiful Things 12/20/16: More Energetic, Back to Lebanon, Broader Brandy Horizons

1. Like today, I go to the pool to flop around and not only replicate the exercises we do in the class I take on Mondays, but expand upon them by doing many more repetitions than we do during class. I hardly exercised while staying with Mom in Kellogg and I've got to figure out how to get out and move around when I help out up there. I returned to Maryland feeling sluggish and just two days of flopping around already have me feeling more energetic.

2. Well, tonight I prepared the Lebanese dinner I started yesterday. I worked on two recipes at once: Lebanese Lentil Salad with Garlic, Cumin, Mint, and Parsley (I subbed cilantro), found here and Maghmour, a Lebanese Moussaka, featuring eggplant, tomatoes, chickpeas, and seasonings, served over basmati rice, found here.  I had a blast fixing these recipes and filling our apartment home with the garlic-y, lemon-y aromas of cooking Mediterranean food. Along with flopping around in the pool, when I'm in Kellogg, I sorely miss cooking these sorts of meals. I love cooking for Mom and fixing food she requests and is familiar with -- but I enjoy even more the freedom I have in our apartment home to fix me and the Deke a variety of meals, mostly vegetarian, and many of them international in origin.

3.  When the arctic air starts moving in, I find it warming and relaxing in the evening to sip on brandy mixed with boiling water (or hot milk) with a cinnamon stick tossed in. The Deke has been enjoying some evening brandy, too, and we've decided to try some different brands and to pay a few bucks more. Our go to brandy for years has been Christian Brothers -- the same was true for Dad --, but this evening I purchased a bottle of E and J V.S.O.P and we both enjoyed it. My take was simple: I thought this brandy's brown sugar qualities were more pronounced than they are in Christian Brothers and I haven't decided if I have a preference. In fact, I probably won't have a preference because usually my favorite beer or brandy or whisky or gin or Scotch is the one I'm enjoying at the moment I'm drinking it.

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