I'm sure everything will be fine #alternativefact

I have to admit that it feels weird to be blogging about food from inside of an absurd Orwellian nightmare, but I mean...The Resistance gotta eat, right? Here is what I have learned to do with dukkah: sprinkle it on top of stuff.

Little bit on here

Little bit on there

And thus ends our section on dukkah. It tastes good. I am distracted.

On Saturday I hung out at the capitol with about 50,000 friends. It was a good hang! It's hard to overstate the restorative value of suddenly realizing how not alone you are.

Not alone

At all

They're feeling me

We got this

There is a lot of #WhyIMarch afoot, and my short answer is "for my two daughters who do currently/will soon attend public school and also have gotten used to breathing air and drinking water."

My longer answer is just a linkstorm.

Descriptions of our president's temperament in the first, easiest days of office are unsettling
Like, people close to him have to manage him like he is a small child
When The Gray Lady uses the word "lie" in a headline that's really really bad
Also when the dictionary is laying out some sick Twitter burns
Alternative facts oh no oh dear someone help us
"Ah, yes, the classic accidental hiring of paid actors"
If this does not terrify you then you did not do enough reading in school

Anyway, uh...time to do something about this, I guess.

The Indivisible Guide is "A Practical Guide for Resisting The Trump Agenda"

The 65 gives a Weekly Call To Action, with helpful scripts

Swing Left shows you where your closest swing district is so you can focus attention/resources there in 2018

Listen to Pod Save America. And The 451.

Don't feel alone.



I think that beaver was whispering "resist"

Hey guys, today is a rough one. I'm basically just trying to cobble together some workable grim determination out of the dumpster of misery in my brain and it's pretty ugly, but honestly these pictures helped just a tiny, tiny bit. In the meantime, Ivy and I have hit the road, for candle-supply-restocking/reality-avoiding reasons.

It's fun!

We're having a great time.

Just another Friday.


We even spotted the elusive double-heart bear

Okay y'all, I think it may be time for a new spice. I've made a--well, not visual dent, exactly, but a spiritual dent in the paprika. Like, I know and the paprika knows that some of it is missing. Also the paella may have broken me. Time for dukkah!

If you're not familiar, dukkah is an Egyptian spice and nut blend, and from what I can tell it is mostly for dipping things into or for sprinkling on top of things. Egyptian Lentil Soup, for example.

This was good, although I have literally never tasted a lentil soup and thought anything other than "This is good," so YMMV.

Anyway, our long weekend was unremarkable. Couple of birthday parties. One pretty successful grocery safari.


"Varying degrees of accuracy"

Happy Friday the 13th, everyone! I buckled down this morning and devoted a significant amount of time to taking in some Real News (pro tip: I find that drawing from my Bradley Method breathing/counting experience really helps with the pain tolerance) and this was the least horrifying piece of information I could find for you: "The museum also has a room of first ladies in painstakingly reproduced inaugural gowns who are, for some reason, about a third of the size of their husbands." Get you some creepily-sized wax while the gettin's good! Why not, you know? Why not. I'm gonna build my own Cabinet of tiny first ladies, just see where it goes.

Paprika. Is still a thing that we're doing here. I thought I should showcase the sweet Spanish version, so I whipped up some paella, which is Spanish for "this rice will make your entire home smell like fish, seriously, it's in the vents somehow."

It has penetrated my very soul

To be fair, I also did not like paella when it was prepared by professionals in Spain:

I'm sorry, fishrice. I kind of tried.

Glancing through my pictures for the week, I realized that I did not take a single picture of my children, although Ivy did take one helpfully-labeled self-portrait.

What I have instead are multiple screenshots of ABC's The Bachelor. Here is one.


Like it's learning to count to 100...uh oh

I  have another paprika recipe sent in response to my plea for them, hooray! The structure of the following paragraph is a joke literally only for her and possibly two other people reading this, feel free to skip to the part where I am griping about weather again.

This Yahoo Answers Recipe was sent in by Kate, thank you Kate, and it is by...Something Has Gone Wrong, we'll call him...Jeffrey. Jeffrey asks: This dish is quite tasty, so why did it cause my children to make weird faces across the table at me?

Okay, I'm done, it's actually an Epicurious recipe for roast chicken and it is very easy and good and contains paprika, so it ticks all of my current boxes.

But honestly, the girls made pretty standard dinner faces.

Our weather has been doing a thing.

It's really keeping us on our toes, outfit-wise. We're having to explore the concepts of "layers" and "hats" with renewed dedication.


We have plenty of seasons, sometimes five or six in one day

It's in the 20s here this morning, but don't worry about us, we are fine, totally fine, we super super got this.

Our high next week is 81. That's right, it's Check The Weather Hourly season in Texas!

And who cares about that anyway, I mean, do you know what time it is? That's right, it's...


A common theme I have noticed in most paprika-heavy recipes is "meat/butter/cream," which is a terrific theme, don't get me wrong, but I thought I would take a quick detour to Vegetable Town, and thus: Smoky Chickpea, Red Lentil, and Vegetable Soup.

The recipe calls for 1/4 tsp of smoked paprika, but come on, we'll never get anywhere 1/4 tsp at a time, so I would say I maybe...dectupled that? WELCOME TO SMOKETOWN.

But then I wanted to give that Hungarian paprika another chance to show its stuff, and wouldn't you know it, Elizabeth sent me pictures from an actual dadgum cookbook, and now I am showing them to you, because this is a very good goulash and you should eat it. Thanks Elizabeth!

Is there kind of a lot of butter and also some oil and maybe sour cream and does it, in my opinion, taste really fantastic over mashed potatoes which also contain kind of a lot of butter? Sure. But just think of all the countless New Year's Resolutioners out there diligently mixing up their green smoothies and remember that it's important to keep balance in the universe and sometimes that means making sacrifices.

2017, time to dig deep 



Spice World

Okay okay back to school back to work back to reading doomsayers legitimate journalism. Everybody ready?


Okay, well. Maybe some paprika will pep us up? I wanted to test-drive my three versions (Hungarian, sweet Spanish, and smoked Spanish) and the most logical test seemed to be: what tastes best on eggs? I have a feeling my entire 2017 spice journey is going to boil down to this very question. So how did the paprikas fare?

Sweet Spanish: too subtle for deviled eggs, at least the mustard-and-pickle-juice monstrosities I favor

Hungarian: flavor holds up, not too spicy, nice complement

Smoked Spanish: winner winner tastes like smoke so it wins (I should probably note that I am disgustingly biased toward smoky flavors)

I can detect the smokiness just by *looking* at this picture

I also chose the smoked version for my New Year's luckstravaganza bowl.

But it only seemed fair to give the Hungarian paprika a chance to shine in its natural habitat, Chicken Paprikash. First off, I appreciate any recipe that instructs me to season something "aggressively" because that is what I'm going to do anyway and I enjoy outside validation. Second, my children both ate more than one bowl of this without whining, presumably because it passed their strict "no excess vegetation" screens.

Off to a good start. Send me your best paprika recipes, please. I hope you also have enough spices to fortify your re-entry into the world, if not I can probably mail you some.



fetch("crackers: cheese")

As I promised on Tuesday, I am attempting to ignore devastating celebrity deaths in favor of my Japanese reality show. I ASSUME EVERYTHING OUT THERE IS FINE. But if you must know, Episode 21 was a very stressful bump.

We are also still in the holiday eating zone of "no cookies until you finish your Chex Mix." We have waffles more days than not.

Thanks to Dan, our resident only-person-who-doesn't-shrug-and-say-"just cereal"-when-confronted-with-morning-hunger

I'll be honest though, we're starting to be kind of over it.

This is like a sixteenth century morality painting about the dangers of getting everything you want

Since I have not made any recipes, is it tacky to just show you the awesome stuff I got for Christmas?  What if I confine it to awesome stuff made by people I know?

First up, some good good goat milk soaps from my mom, made by my cousin Mindy. I let my soap bowl run all the way down this month because I knew I would be getting an infusion of these bad boys for Christmas. They're so SOFT and they smell so NICE and the goats they came from are so ADORABLE despite being GOATS. I also want to plug her Instagram feed, which is one of my very favorites. Almost every day it briefly tricks me into thinking I want to be a farmer, which is patently untrue.

Next! This delightful necklace from Dan, made by my artist market buddy McKinley Mizar. It has some heft and captures some light and feels like a very legit piece of personal decoration. Just a real old school "look at my stunning medal adornments" situation. Also, McKinley is honestly the nicest lady and I'm always pumped when we are set up next to each other.

And then! This way cool agave print tea towel from my unfairly talented sister-in-law Tiffany. I also have one of the armadillo t-shirts and it is the best. I currently have my eye on the Desert Crow design because like all reasonable people I love pictures of birds but not birds themselves.

Finally, I don't think she dried and ground the peppers and barks and such herself, but my mom did portion out a lot of spices for me and give my inspiration for 2017's cooking project, which is: Uh Erica You Have A Lot Of Spices You Should Use Them.

Finally we will know which paprika reigns supreme

Still got a couple more days of really trying to avoid news/any non-Japanese-reality-show conflict. Maybe I can use Anna's new robot to just fetch me snacks.


You also should watch Terrace House, DO IT

Greetings from the Kids Table!

I decided to stick with my "round and brown" strategy for Christmas Day: Chocolate Pecan Pie and Cinnamon Crumble Apple Pie. This worked out pretty well. All brown foods in 2017, maybe? Just dark mounds of life-sustaining sugar? Still tweaking those plans.

Diabetic like a fox

If you celebrated Christmas this weekend, I hope it was so terrific that you were slightly put out by someone distracting you with a donut muffin.

And I hope you received a gift that truly spoke to who you are as a person, be it "tiny and fierce:"

Or "drippy cheese mess:"

It me

And if you did not celebrate Christmas I hope you still had a nice weekend, I don't know, my gift to myself is not reading the news this week. Gonna let that 2016 celebrity death toll rage on without me for a few days. Gonna binge on Terrace House instead.



 Well y'all, we deep in it already.

Everybody stay safe, do your best, make good choices.

And remember, as the very inspirational and eternally cheerful Victorian Mr. Charles Dickens taught us, we are all just "fellow-passengers to the grave." See you on the flip side!