Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Boost, Soup, Planned Parenthood

So--here's what's new. Just finished a multiweek run with BOOST Dance Festival and I think all our performances went well, which is fairly miraculous, although my body is feeling some bruises! We had some great press, and my picture was in the Seattle Times!! Even though I'm itty bitty and in the back, it still counts. Here is the link to the Seattle Times review: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/thearts/2014583296_boost24.html

This is the picture that was in the paper. Here's another picture:
In this one I'm right in the middle.
Here is the review from the blog SeattleDances, which I think is more informed and in depth than the Seattle Times review: http://seattledances.blogspot.com/2011/03/boost-dance-festival-puts-local-artists.html#more

Also, I never got a chance to post about this, but we went to a lovely party hosted by Hannah a few weeks back. She had been wanting to try out a soup recipe, and share it with some friends. 

Hannah chops in her lovely sun-filled kitchen

Yummy soda bread contributed by Elyse
There was a great view of the city out the window but the picture didn't capture it.

SUPER DELICIOUS Fig and Endive Salad 
*Fig and Endive Salad*
(Serves 4)

10 dried Calimyrna figs
0.5 cup orange juice
3 heads of Belgian endive, rinsed and drained
2 ounces chèvre or other mild goat cheese, crumbled
0.5 cup coarsely chopped toasted walnuts

0.5 teaspoon orange zest
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
0.25 teaspoon salt
0.25 teaspoon ground black pepper

In a small saucepan, bring the figs and orange juice to a boil and cook on high heat for 1 minute. Cover with a tight-fitting lid, remove from the heat, and set aside to plump, 10 to 20 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients and set aside. Cut the heads of endive lengthwise into halves and remove the cores. Chop the leaves into 1-inch pieces. When the figs are soft and plump, cut them into quarters.

Arrange the endive on a large platter and top it with the figs, chevre, and walnuts. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and serve.

Ben serves up soup
*Tuscan Bean Soup*
(Serves 6-8; yields 8.5 cups)

2 cups diced onions
1 cup peeled and diced carrots
4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 tablespoon olive oil
15 large fresh sage leaves
6 cups cooked pinto, Roman, or small red or white beans*
3 to 4 cups vegetable stock, bean-cooking liquid, or water
salt and pepper to taste

*equivalent to three 15- or 16-ounce cans, undrained

In a soup pot, cook the onions, carrots, and garlic in the olive oil on medium-low heat until the onions are translucent and the carrots are tender, about 10 minutes. Stack the sage leaves and cut them crosswise into thin strips. Stir the sage into the vegetables. Add the cooked beans and 3 cups of stock, bean-cooking liquid, or water. Cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until simmering, 5 to 10 minutes.

Carefully ladle about 3 cups of the soup into a blender and purée until smooth. Stir the purée back into the soup. If you wish, add more stock or water for a less thick consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste. Gently reheat the soup and serve hot.

Thanks to Hannah for the recipes!

I also attended a rally for Planned Parenthood a few weekends ago. I wasn't sure what to expect, but it turned out to be really inspiring. 

Planned Parenthood provides invaluable services for low cost all over the country, including cancer screenings, STI testing and treatment, contraception and safe sex education, and family planning. For many low-income women it is their only access to medical care. It provides all of these services without judgement or religious/political motives. Planned Parenthood stands to lose all of it's federal funding, which would be a travesty to the millions of people who rely on their services, but also to our budget, since for every dollar we spend on preventative services, we save four.  SO, if you would like to sign the petition and stand with Planned Parenthood as I have, here is the link:

I hope you sign it. I don't want to get too political here, but having the right to decide what happens in your life and your body is a basic human right, and one that I think we certainly strive for in a country that is founded on the pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness. 

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