20 July 2013

a few thoughts on 'togetherness'

It's promintently in the header of this blog: 'together' is the magic word - and I have been contemplating on that since a while.

It seems to be obvious, that we as a human race have reached what can be reached as individuals. With all it's upsides, success, but also consequences. To go beyond that, it now needs a sense of community, a sense of contributing. To quote Aristoteles: 'The whole is more than the sum of its parts.' 

But what's needed, what's the prerequisite for that? Or differently put: what keeps us from collaborating? Contributing generously to each other, to the community? 

To me it feels that in the depth of our being we love to belong, to participate and to share. So really, what's standing in the way to live that?

Profound question, don't you think so?

If this is not inquired, 'togetherness' will be an ideal, which - if at all - is experienced coincidentally. With all it side effects, like trying to make it, failing, being hard on ourselves and others... Does that speak to you in any way? Well, it certainly does to me.

So here is what has been showing up in my consciousness until now:
As soon as there is agitation in the system, the sense of community and togetherness seems to diminish. 

Attention moves towards the agitation, trying to understand, solve or get rid of, and kind of 'looses' what's around me. Could we say so? The bigger that feels, what is perceived as an inner disturbance, the less we notice what's going on around us. And a sense of being wrong, being separate might arise from that.

Puh, that's good to see. 'Cause really: how often is agitation arising inside one way or the other? 

Ok, let's take a break here. No conclusion, no solution. This is not the end of the exploration. Just seeing, being aware. Feeling, sensing. Allowing space and time.

How does that functioning contribute to my life, the people around me as long as it is playing out unconsciously?

Step by step. 

I am curious to hear from you on that, learn about your findings. This might become a joint exploration. I would love that. It might make visible, that it's not personal in the first place. But let's see...

15 July 2013

a zucchini usually does not come alone...

All of you who grow zucchini in their garden know what I am talking about. There were times when we ate zucchini every single summer day! And as they don't freeze very well - except for as soup - it's great to have some yummy recipes on hand in order to jolly your beloveds along.

As with all recipes really, it all depends on the quality of ingredients. Lucky me, most was freshly picked from my garden plus the neighbor's chicken eggs made this dish a real treat.

Zucchini Pancakes - makes approx 12

for the pancakes
3 medium zucchini, shredded
salt & freshly ground black pepper

3 large eggs, beaten

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 cup crumbled feta cheese

3 scallions, thinly sliced

1-2 tablespoons finely shredded fresh mint

1 teaspoon baking powder

for the yogurt sauce
2/3 cup plain yogurt

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

1. I forgot this whole first step - now it's clear, why they turned out quite, let's say 'juicy' ;-)
Place zucchini in a colander, mix with 1/2 teaspoon salt., allow to drain for 5 min. Transfer to a cloth kitchen towel, squeeze hard to extract as much moisture as possible. Squeeze a 2nd time: volume will shrink to about half the original.

2. In a large mixing bowl combine zucchini and eggs. Using a fork, mix well. Add flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, olive oil, feta, scallions, mint, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and baking powder, mix again.

3. Place a skillet over medium heat. Add vegetable oil, heat until shimmering. Place heaping tablespoons of zucchini batter in pan, allowing room to spread. Flatten them with a spatula if necessary. Fry until golden on one side, then turn and fry again until golden on other side. Repeat once or twice, frying about 5 to 6 min total, so pancakes get quite crisp. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels, and keep warm in oven. Serve hot.

4. For yogurt sauce: In a small bowl, combine yogurt, garlic and salt. Mix well & serve on the side or on pancakes.

I found this recipe online a couple of years ago. Unfortunately I do not remember where. So please: all credits go to the unknown author. And one more thing: usually I don't stick religiously to the recipe, but kind of feel my way through it. Especially as I am not yet very well accustomed to the US-cup-measurment - with a little bit of intuition things do work out in the end...

AND I just found out, they are great next day too!