Tuesday, August 07, 2012

A call for simplicity

Heading out on a full moon paddle
I heard the call. At first it started far away, pointing and beckoning me toward it. Summer calls, and with the often fleeting of sunshine in our geographical lives, it's not to be ignored.

Again, Oregon I love you
Growing up, I spent summers working or on projects, and into my professional years working and traveling from one end of the country to the other. Being a professional, and a business owner now, means calling my own shots on time management. I've come to learn that time away from the work feeds the work, making me only better at the creative projects I design for my clients.
My dad and the mountain
So I listened to that call; the call of summer and opportunity for play.  I've crafted a schedule allowing for intense work, and for intense play. Days of summer spent on rivers, lakes, and hiking to waterfalls. Evenings of paddling under a full moon. Conference calls across the country at crazy early morning hours, proposals typed at iPads from far away locations.
This afternoons view
Letting go of the domestic arts for a season and (gasp) backing away from the canner. But focusing on my very favorites, like packing a freezer with freshly picked blueberries, my favorite fruit for winter 5am smoothies. In many ways it's been a call for simplicity: doing the best work for the best clients for the best projects, and playing in ways that make me happy to the very core.
Bounty of blueberries
I haven't shared much in the way of recipes here lately, so in the vein of simplicity, here is my most favorite of meals come high summer. Simply put together with ingredients directly from the garden, and some from my favorite natural foods store.

If I only eat one thing for the rest of this summer, let it be this simple dish.

I've heard the call for simplicity, and I'm pretty sure I heard in there the words tomatoes, basil and good mozzarella.

Simple Summer Bliss: Tomato, Basil, Mozzarella

Step 1:
Step 1
Go out and pick tomatoes. Slice them. Place on plate. Sprinkle with a bit of good fleur de sel. Fancy words for tasty sea salt.

Step 2:
Step 2
Slice some fresh mozzarella from your local grocer. As fresh and simple as you can get.

Step 3:
Step 3
Go out and pick some basil. Pinch off the tops of your basil, encouraging it to grow more. Rinse and roll into tight bundles, slicing with knife to create long strips. Sprinkle liberally across your tomatoes.

Step 4:
Step 4
Splash with some tasty balsamic vinegar. Here I'm using a fig balsamic because it's a little bit sweet. Did I mention it's tasty? It is.

Step 5:
Step 5
Drizzle a bit with olive oil. And you can add some more salt and freshly ground pepper at this stage too.

Step 6:
Step 6
Slice up some good, chewy bread. Then stack it all together and devour. That taste you are experiencing? Pure summer.


Unknown said...

Mmm...so happy that tomatoes are finally in season. I am always trying to find ways to get as many in my mouth as possible while they're in season!


Ah, LeAnn, You do know how to lower one's blood pressure don't you? You're so right about needing to take advantage of this most awesomest (fleeting) time of year and get outdoors and drink up the fresh air and Vitamin D. Love your blue toenails! Recently my daughters and I picked a bunch of blueberries for the freezer too for the exact same reason, except that they won't be served at 5 AM. I like my sleep too much for that. :)

Now I need to go make me some Bliss. :)

Jenn said...

First of all, this recipe look AMAZING! And, I love that you've structured your summer to include intense play :). That's what summers are for!

Second, I am hugely delinquent in reading through my comments and I just realized that YOU HAVE A BLOG! And by the way, I would love to come look at your kitchen floor. We still have quite decided how to proceed with ours. :)

MulchMaid said...

Ahhhhh, summer. I love how you make the most of it - but relax doing it. That recipe is one of my favorites for late summer when the tomatoes ripen.