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Jerusalem - Powerfully Multipolar

Jerusalem - Powerfully Multipolar

Indeed, isn't a place nothing but its people? If so, I would say, Jerusalem has a multiple personality disorder!

While in Tel Aviv, I perceived a frenzied energy that served as a the steam outlet of all that pent up tension, here life was rather unremarkably normal on the surface. Despite the looming presence of the Western Wall and all its emotions, that even as an utter outsider with no ties, I was overwhelmed by! One of the defining moments of my trip to the country was at the Western Wall.

As I walked to the wall, at one point, I felt overtaken by a dense wave of energy - an incredibly sad one. And, I found myself uncontrollably crying, tears streaming down my cheeks without control, even as my brain was trying to make sense of what was happening.

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Garden Update: All Things Wild

Garden Update: All Things Wild

One of the true joys of the last couple of months has been walking our every morning onto the garden and finding out what is growing there! So far, I have found blackberry, raspberry bushes that have delighted me with their blooms, fragrant wild rose, lemon balm, lamb’s ear, wild iris and azaleas and lots of boxwood. I also confronted critters - stubborn, cut and with resignation…!

This post talks about living with nature and appreciating its beauty. Plus notes on the wild fruit bushes, and, tips on critter management.

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Whole Orange Polenta Cake

Whole Orange Polenta Cake

Would you eat something pretty or something tasty, again and again? :)

This cake is made using one of those Italian staples, Polenta. Their particular version of this yellow corn flour is extraordinarily finely ground, with more of a nut meal like texture than the grits we easily find in the States. This is what lends the corn flour to their delightful use in pastries. And, you can imagine it is much cheaper than fine ground flour. After all, polenta is an everyday savory staple and its use in sweet creations is an accessible extension, especially in the heartland of Tuscany that while beautiful is a harsh agrarian land!

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Breakfast: Buckwheat, Banana and Fruit Muffins

Breakfast: Buckwheat, Banana and Fruit Muffins

This year, I have been discovering uses for buckwheat flour. Aside from it being gluten free, it has a unique nuttiness that comes through nicely, especially paired with fruits. I am also intrigued by its unique properties; the flour flexes like it has gluten and it even gels like you used psyllium husk. What I mean, it displays terrific water binding property. These muffins were a creation of necessity as well as curiosity. The usual bananas ripening faster than consumption triggered it. I also wanted to see how a baked good would taste with no added sugar and using only the natural sugars from the fruits in it.

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Garden Update: First Harvest

Garden Update: First Harvest

Ah! That first harvest!! A joy that knows no bounds... a harbinger for that everlasting hope and a gentle sigh of relief that hey, it is all coming along ok. There is so much emotion when you pick the first few gems from your garden, be it a little or a lot! My first pluck was true to that. I felt so, so gratified, happy, elated, joyous... just precious!

This post has notes on harvesting cilantro, lettuce, spinach and caring for pea flowers and pods.

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