Monday, May 16, 2016

One day you will ask me which is more important? My life or yours? I will say mine and you will walk away not knowing that you are my life.

I find people fascinating. Of all the board games I dabble in, humans are my favorite puzzle to solve.

I've often pondered over the dichotomy between history and humanity. So intertwined, yet so separate. People have endings, history does not. History goes on and human lives end within that supposed stream of infinity. It's why I find mere mortals so fascinating. In one way or another, there is closure. There is a beginning and an end to every person's story. What a beautifully straightforward resolution for such convoluted creatures. We spin fictions for ourselves, change narratives, fall in and out of love, and seem to believe that there is a right way to do all of it.

And I absolutely ADORE watching all of this play out. In some ways, in a lot of ways, I would rather stay above the fray and fall into my natural position as counselor. I love so deeply that I'm unsure whether it's fair to emotionally align myself with one single person. The Buddhist idea of never really attaching yourself but always guiding others has always been unusually appealing to me. I think of it as a more all encompassing love; one where you help others find their purpose, romance, and passion.

A giant Buddha I once visited in Sleep Hollow, NY. Perhaps that's where it all started.
Do I think it's possible to love anyone? Yes. Do I think my definition of love is broader than most others? Yes.

I'm not sure I understand the point of rationing my love for only a few people. There's a quote by Herman Hesse where he declares that we must "...compensate for the shortage of love in this world with more love, in small private matters". That. That is my sole purpose on this earth.

Speaking of love, many of my readers (so basically my friends) have expressed their unbridled enthusiasm for the love profiles I compile. According to them they would like to read only love profiles all day every day (thanks for not loving my words instead...I jest, I jest). So, without further ado...

A Profile of Love: V

Tell me about your search for the one. 

V: Haha, I'd have to tell you about my very disastrous first serious relationship to explain that. You have all these ideas in your mind about what you want, but you learn so much more from your bad relationships. My first boyfriend and I had so many intense fights and he was never really committed. It was 5 years of intensity. Your first love is your death love; the bow and arrow in your heart.

How long after that did you meet your husband?

V: I just decided to take a step back and take care of myself for a time. I met my husband through friends when I was 23. But I didn't want anything romantic from him, he was persistent regardless. Eventually he wore me down. There's something to be said for persitence. Maybe it's old fashioned, but initially, I think the guy needs to pursue.

Me: 100% in agreement with you there! 

How did your husband propose?

V: We were going to a housewarming party in Silver Spring. I had a really terrible sinus infection and he sat me down on a bench outside and started telling me all these nice things, "We get along so well, you're just like one of the guys..". I was like, what is he talking about? Why is he being so mushy? He got down on one knee and I started freaking out. I shrieked "Oh my god, get up! Did you ask my parents??". He laughed and asked me if that meant yes. So I said yes, and he pulled out a green velvet box and said, "You're not going to throw up are you?". I answered with "I don't know, I might."

How do you and your husband fight?

V: I have anxiety, so that makes things tough sometimes. But he's super logical. I get upset and storm off, and he just won't address it. He's very mellow and won't fight, and that actually calms me down. You get better at fighting the longer you're in a relationship. He used to tell me things like "Calm down, you're over reacting." That's the worst thing you can say to someone with anxiety. He's learned over the years how to handle me. 

What advice to you have for my generation on love?

V: Just calm down, everything is going to be fine. Get off your phone and your apps, take the time to talk to people and look them in the eye. This is a human experience. Relationships are the building blocks of life, concentrate on the people you already know. 


My decision to make Khachapuri for this post was more divine intervention than true choice. I ran into three Georgian women in the span of a week. 

1. My friend just began dating a beautiful Georgian girl (who by some irony of the universe went to the same Graduate school as I did), she said I should use a mix of feta and mozzarella to make up for lack of authentic Georgian cheese in DC. 

2. I went to an event and ran into another Georgian goddess (who by some irony of the universe worked at an auction house that was the competitor of the one I worked at in New York), she said I should use a mix of goat cheese, feta, and mozzarella.

3. I visited Compass Rose with a couple friends and ran into the exquisite Georgian owner, Rose (who by some irony of universe gave me her business card and asked me to contact her to talk about my blog). She said I should use a mix of ricotta and mozzarella. 

I, being the rebellious bastard I am, decided to use a mix of feta, ricotta, and smoked gouda...

Serves 2-3

1/2 Cup + 1 Tbsp Milk
1 Tsp Yeast
1 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
1/2 Tsp Sugar
1/4 Tsp Salt 

1 Tbsp Butter
1 Tbsp Flour
1/2 Cup Whole Milk
2 Cups Equal Parts Feta, Ricotta, and Smoked Gouda Cheeses
1 Egg Yolk (For Later)
1 Tbsp Butter (For Later)

2 Tbsp Sundried Tomatoes 
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/2 Tsp Raisins 
1 Tsp Apple Cider Vinegar 
2 Small Garlic Cloves 

Cayenne Pepper and Smoked Paprika to taste

1. Warm milk in a small bowl for 40 seconds
2. Whisk in yeast and allow to sit for 10 minutes
3. Meanwhile combine the flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl
4. Using a dough attachment mix the flour mixture and milk mixture until a ball forms
5. Knead for 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic
6. Set aside in a warm place and allow to rise for 2 hours

7. While the dough is proofing, melt 1 Tbspn butter and 1 Tbspn flour in a heavy bottom saucepan

8. Add milk and whisk constantly until thickened. Allow to cool completely 

9. Mix the three cheeses together in a small bowl, and add bechamel once it is cooled.

10. Pulse together all the tapenade ingredients in a food processor or blender and set aside

11. Retrieve your now risen dough, feel free to ogle at how much it has expanded. Preheat oven to 500 F and place a pizza stone or baking sheet inside

12. Roll out your dough in an oval shape on a lightly floured surface and transfer to a sheet or parchment paper.

13. Spread tapenade over the the dough

14. Spread cheese mixture over the tapenade 

15. Fold in the edges of the dough to make this beautiful boat-like shape

16. Transfer khachapuri with parchment paper onto the baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes
17. Top the hot khachapuri with cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, 1 Tbspn butter, and egg yolk

18. Mix all the cheese, egg, and butter together. Slice up the khachapuri and serve hot!

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