owl you are

recipe for Spicy Pumpkin Bisque

wednesday wellness, lifestyle, photography, recipe, foodLindseyComment

Because it's not really fall until you've made something with pumpkin, right? It's slowly cooling down here in sunny LA, but I wasn't about to let some warm days keep me from participating in the joys of soup season. I bought those little pie pumpkins a few weeks ago in attempt to perk up my living room with some pops of fall hues while perspiring through that crazy heat wave- and have basically been plotting out my pumpkin soup plans ever since... It finally went down this past Sunday.

I don't follow recipes when I cook. Instead what I do is look at about 400 different recipes on Pinterest that use one or a few of the ingredients I want to feature. I explore different flavors and scenarios others have created, and then I try to come up with a super healthy and always savory concoction of my own. If you were to ask my friends how they'd describe my cooking, they'd probably say 'interesting' and they wouldn't be wrong. I've combined some pretty strange ingredients, and it's not always a good thing, but every now and then- it's a very, very good thing. This pumpkin soup is one of these times. 

It all started while cleaning out my pantry Sunday morning. I discovered some cashews that had been around a while, so I decided to make some nut milk and use that for the broth. With this in mind, I biked over to the farmers market and got inspired when I saw these little red thai peppers, and what resulted is some rich, savory, spicy goodness. Or, spicy pumpkin bisque with a bit of a thai twist. Ya, let's go with that.

Ingredients:

1 pie pumpkin

1 cup cashews (or 2 cups cashew milk)

1 16 oz can tomato sauce

1/2 cup coconut meat (optional)

3 thai chiles

2 tbsp coconut oil

2 garlic cloves, diced

2 tbsp fresh turmeric root, chopped

1 tbsp ginger, chopped

1 tbsp red wine vinegar

1 lemon squeezed

Cinnamon, paprika & cumin, to taste

Salt & pepper, to taste

Directions:

Follow my directions for how to milk a nut here, because you wouldn't believe the different vs. your boxed/canned alternatives. It's best if you soak overnight, so plan ahead this bisque making business.

Then cut open your pumpkin, remove the seeds, and roast it in the oven at 350 degrees for 40-60 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Get your pot hot and add coconut oil, ginger, turmeric, garlic and chiles. Cook until golden brown (about two minutes).

Add in the coconut, cashew milk, tomato sauce and roasted pumpkin. Bring to a boil and then simmer on low heat for 15-25 minutes. 

Add red wine vinegar and lemon, and then season with spices to taste. 

Serve warm, add socks, get cozy.

pumpkinsoup-34.jpg

I must admit, I did something blasphemous. I threw away the pumpkin seeds. I did not wash, season, and bake them to golden brown perfection like a real pumpkin lover. Forgive me, fellow pumpkin lovers- I just could not be bothered. And to be honest, the soup was so good, I didn't even feel that bad about it. 

Will you give this a try? Link to comment up top by the title!

Xo, 

Lindsey

ps. Those peppers be damn hot, so I adjusted the recipe a tad from what I went with since I like the kind of spicy that gives most people stomach ulcers. And I still need to figure out what to make with the leftovers. Suggestions welcome.

pss. Like what you see? I do food photography! Check out some of my recent work at www.hiremetoshootyou.com and contact me if you're interested, or pass my information along to someone who might be!

an Update on Life Lately

tuesday tales, travel, photography, lifestyle, adventure, design, discussionLindseyComment

What I love about photography is that it's proof there exists an infinite number of ways to capture each fleeting moment. It's about finding the right angle, catching the light just right, and allowing the impulse to follow our intuition decide when to pull the trigger. We don't always grasp perfection, so we take multiple frames. We keep shooting and waiting for a little bit of magic, for the light to creep in just right...

I was thinking about this the other day and how that's really a great metaphor for life. No matter what's happening, we're writing our own stories, capturing moments and cementing them in our memories. We're choosing an angle, our paths, and sculpting our own realities. We have control over every frame, every step- how many and how often we take them. I've been learning this all too well, but it's easier said than done. Every day is a challenge and some days I'm better than others at rising to the occasion. I think we all must know a bit about that, which gives me some solace.

It's been three months since I left my job. Three months unemployed, or self employed, it really depends on the day which one resonates. Some days I wake up in fervor, ready to complete a million tasks, and other days I find just writing them down overwhelms me to a point where I feel nearly immobilized. The freedom to do anything comes with the confinement of uncertainty. Uncertainty is daunting, scary even, and nothing hinders progress like fear. I'm blazing my own trail; it's what I wanted. I wasn't sure I wanted it now per say, but I manifested this reality. What stopped me from leaving my job when I first because dissatisfied (probably a year before I left), was the lack of confidence that I could make it on my own again- I remembered what it was like. But here I am, and it's  just as hard as I remember, maybe even harder. It feels like I'm starting over and albeit scary, I think it's a good thing. Greater challenges reaps larger rewards, right?

I studied Interior Design in college. I figured it was a way to do art while still making my parents happy, choosing a profession with greater chance of employment post graduation. But graduated in 2009 at the collapse of the US economy and new building projects essentially ceased. My certainty of employment dissolved and I didn't go the conventional route, no longer as concerned with appeasing my parents. I didn't find an internship, look for a job at a showroom, or move home to save money and figure it out like many of my peers. No, I drove to Chicago with $2000, got a lease for $900 a month for a shitty studio in Boystown, lost my phone and totaled my car within 2 days, built my first website, started my own company, went through 4 part-time jobs, and landed an official showcase at SXSW- all within 5 months. 

At 21 years old I was running my own business, which I supported myself with a variety of odd jobs: dog walking, serving, freelancing, and even sales (which I abhorred). It was quite the whirlwind learning experience, but as you can imagine judging by my current predicament- it didn't last. I can't believe it's been five years since it started and 3 years since it crumbled. I'm turning 27 on Friday. (Yes, Halloween baby.) Here I am again- juggling every day, looking for full-time employment, while trying to make it work as a freelancer. I love being my own boss, and making my own schedule, but it's not easy. It's not easy for me to admit, I'm relying on unemployment and food stamps. Most days I feel overwhelmed with the uncertainty that lies ahead, but then others, I feel wildly optimistic.

It's scary, but there's infinite possibility; I can approach my future from a million different angles. I'm not where I imagined I would be at 27, but things never really turn out the way we plan, and I think there's likely good reason for that. Life would be awfully dull if we all played by the rules and our paths unfolded exactly as we deemed proper. Don't you agree? I'm not sure exactly the point of today's post, but I guess I just felt like getting a little candid with you (that is the theme here this year)- let you know I'm working through some stuff, I'm figuring it all out, and I have no idea where I'm going.

So cheers, to possibility and the power of perspective. Also, thanks for reading because I totally dig writing to you. 

Xo, 

Lindsey

an Indian Pop Up in Venice

monday mashup, lifestyle, food, wellness, photographyLindseyComment

Last Sunday, I had the pleasure of attending The Dinner Party Association's Indian Pot Luck at a chef Mariana Carvallo's quaint little cottage in Venice. I've talked about my friend Megan before- she takes my picture from time to time and her blog is pretty wonderful. It was the first Dinner Party Association event to take place outside of her kitchen, so it was exciting! The event was sponsored by Health-Ade Kombucha (that stuff's the bees knees) and Tru Vodka, so the cocktails were the yummiest, with a side of probiotic. All of the dishes, created by Chef Mariana, featured fresh & local socal ingredients. We enjoyed an eggplant tartlet, roasted carrots, curries, and complete with Megan's rice pudding creation for desert. All of it had me basically drooling all over myself... Thankfully, I was able to hide behind my camera and the space was picture-perfect, so I'll let the photos do the talking today... 

Make sure to follow The Dinner Party Association because who knows, maybe we'll cohost another event soon... 

Xo, 

Lindsey

ps. I do event photography! If you or someone you know is hosting and wants to capture their next event, contact me here for rates and availability.