Monday, November 7, 2011

Veganaise Trial, Muslim Deli, Basboosa

So I got this egg-less mayo to try vegan mayo. I went back to my parents to get some regular egg kind too but don't have any and just using veganaise for now.

The regular mayo I like best is organic spectrum. I suppose it's funny I'm writing about mayo recipes after thinking how boring when I was younger but my life is now both boring and more than eventful and exciting with subterfuge and intrigue, so mayo recipes are a nice normal thing to write about.

It's actually decent.

I used it first on my open-face toast veggie sandwiches, and bruschetta stuff and then I used it across tortillas with salsa and veggies. It's also super good with raw broccoli. My only creative venture with it so far is with making a kind of vegan broccoli soup.

I loved cream of mushroom and cream of broccoli as a kid (and tomato soup and cream of tomato, esp. with grilled cheese sandwiches and dill pickle to the side)...but without using milk how does one make cream of broccoli?

So I made broccoli soup with nothing but water, a little olive oil, and broccoli cut up. A very small hint of red pepper or something but super remote...nothing really. Then I poured it into a bowl and had pre-mixed veganaise with brewer's yeast (nutritional yeast).

Brewer's yeast (nutritional yeast) is used by some vegans as a cheese substitute because it's sort of a full and dense flavor slightly resembling a cheese.

The Veganaise mixed with the yeast, and then added to steaming hot broccoli, made it into a kind of cream of broccoli. It was not bad at all...actually very good if you use enough of the yeast and veganaise.

So that was my "not-looking, just thinking on my own" experiment for the day yesterday and it was GREAT!

I had tons of energy for research yesterday.

Oh, the other thing I did was start my day with a drink combining astragalus, spirulina, and kelp. Downed it inbetween gulps of a tea brew I've been making.

I almost made spagetti last night too, but waited.

But anyway, this 3-blend green drink is a very good energy tonic and I followed it up with a gulp of organic apple cider vinegar with the mother.

The tea blend I've made is with yerba matte and ginko bilboba (equal parts) and then adding Lipton's and/or Earl Grey WITH Good Earth tea for the natural sweetener. The Good Earth tea levels out a slightly bitter flavor from the ginko.

Drink lots of this and voila. Bright day and clear thinking. I think the 3 blend green drink is very good too.

OH, AND I discovered, if you first drink this yerba-ginko tea and/or with a prep of the 3-blend green drink, and then SWITCH to strong coffee, it acts as an expectorant a little, and really clears stuff up.

And then last night for my cocktail I made dark cocoa powder (natural, no sugar) with a little vanilla extract, and crushed red chili peppers and lots of cayenne pepper. It was a very picante chocolate. And I drank it at a texture that was not as fluid as coffee or tea or even hot chocolate as we know it today, but thicker. Much denser.

That is a serious late-night wake me up call and good for the sweet tooth because I was craving chocolate bars or candy and made this instead. Oh, and at the end I added and stirred in honey.

The 3 chinese-herb (and other) green tea blend tastes super disgusting so you have to gulp it. Straight astragalus, spirulina, and kelp with water is a disgusting taste, but I chug it and don't breathe while chugging.

An alternative, if you want to actually enjoy the taste, is to mix in a LOT of blackberries, which I've tried, and honey.

I made one drink with the 3 herbs and then some spinach, carrot juice and cilantro, and you can add lots of things, but if you add enough berries and a sweetener, you can cover up the taste of the other stuff and even drink it slowly. When I made it like this, it was a very dark purple-black color. It actually tasted GOOD.

But sometimes I don't mess around with making something taste good if I'm just going to chug something for the medicinal or energy benefits.

I have nothing in my entire house that is dairy or animal product now, I realized, except for honey.

Honey is an animal product bc it comes from bees.

And fuck you if I'm giving up my honey.

I figure it is not too taxing for bees to make this honey anyway. They're flying around doing their thing and having fun while they fly too. I mean, I can't see how it harms the bees.

Again, I am not saying I will do this forever or even very long, but it's working for me right now.

You can eat like a total PIG and never get fat on a vegan diet. I think the most benefit is if you try to go mainly raw foods, and not cook everything. The things I cook, mainly, are beans, rice, and frying bread or tortillas. I eat almost everything else fresh and raw.

Since I've been Vegan, I could probably write a recipe book with some of the experiments I've come up with. The thing is, I don't measure anything out and just add a little of this and a little of that and it turns out good. Most of the time.

Sometimes I look up what I've just made to see if anyone else makes that and I find I've made something popular in Russia, or Afghanistan, India, China, or Sweden...wherever. When I looked up my lentils with the plum sauce recipe after I made it from the top of my head, it was pulling up Afghanistan recipes, a few Chinese recipes, and a couple Eastern Indian ones and I even found out I had added the plum sauce later, as some do. I separated my spicy from sweet and then combined the two.

And I think the spice that I liked so much on kefir cheese and toated flatbread (nan bread) was "cumin". I think that's the main ingredient in the spice mixture I used to buy in Portland from a middle eastern store. I don't know what the other ingredients were, but cumin was the main one. I would toast my nan bread in the oven so it was crisp on the outside and soft in the middle, and then put kefir cheese on my plate. Then I added this cumin over the kefir, and olive oil. Sometimes I added a garnish of a few kalmata olives. I don't think I used vinegar with it, but maybe some balsamic on the side. I mainly remember using this cumin spice mixture on top of kefir with olive oil poured across it. Then I took the toasted nan bread and broke it off and dipped it into the kefir with spices and olive oil.

I ate this ALL the time. It became one of my favorite snacks.

I remember being under surveillance when I went there, and that was back in 1997-1999. I just remember being watched by people sitting in cars in parking lots and didn't know why.

It was a Muslim middle eastern deli-store so maybe I thought someone was curious, I don't know. I found it because it was next door to a "spy shop" and I had noticed the "spy shop" and wondered about it. I think I chickened out of going to the spy shop because I felt silly about it and that's when I noticed this middle eastern deli. I always liked to try new international foods, so I wallked in and they had some VERY GOOD things you could buy.

I bought the nan bread there and tried kefir cheese for the first time, buying from them, and they had pretty good prices for kalmata olives because they had so much olive stock. I got kalmata mainly but also tried the large greek olives in bulk. I always walked out with olives and kefir cheese. They had the best brand of nan bread I could find anywhere. They had this special spice mixture to go with kefir and olive oil and a woman there told me how they used it and said the mixture was a secret. But I think cumin was a main ingredient. I loved it. It wasn't pita, it was nan, and I liked it better. And then I tried their steaks. They had some of the best steaks I ever tried in my life. I asked them what was different about their steaks, because it said something next to the steaks and I didn't understand what it meant. It's basically like the kosher process, where, I think, the cow is killed in a humane way, so it doesn't suffer, and it's a certain process of making sure the blood goes a certain way, or something. I can't remember. I just know that then they sell the meat right away, very fresh. So I tried the steaks and they were very, very good. Really high quality meat.

But I remember, around this time, I would leave the deli and there would be people watching me from the parking lot. I don't know who they were. Sometimes they were white and sometimes they were ethnic.

I also bought rose water there, and orange flower water, and a kind of fruit leather made from pureed apricots and then dried. That apricot fruit leather was really good and I bought this a lot too. And I bought figs there. Not a lot of figs, but once or twice. I don't really remember buying anything else there or trying anything new except these things. I did try some kind of candy confection and it was just like Aplets & Cotlets in Cashmere, Washington. It was a kind of gelatin candy flavored with fruit or rose water and covered with powdered sugar all the way around. I remember eating these and thinking, "Aplets and Cotlets got their recipe from the Middle East!"

I just thought of something.

I bought my rose water before I ever went to this place. I think I bought it at another store maybe and then tried it later. But I am positive I bought my orange flower water from the Muslim Middle Eastern deli-store.

And after Jewish Josh Gatov raped me, and commented about his being Jewish and what would my Dad think, he took me to see "A Clockwork Orange."

Maybe someone Jewish wanted to get rid of me because they thought I was associating with Muslims.

The only flower water I bought at the Muslim store was orange flower water. I already had rose water.

This store was off of Terwilliger Blvd. and so was Gatov's apartment.

I had rose flower water when I lived at my house across St. John's Bridge in N. Portland. It was in a dark blue glass bottle that was round and had a label on it and I had it in my spice shelves, where I had about 50 of my over more than 100 spices displayed. It was a little built-in shelving bc my house was a 1920s bungalow and it was a built-in in the kitchen. It was this dark blue bottle that had a label for rose water and it was from France. I had it when I worked at CTR for Ed Israel and it was really after working for him that I had problems. That was 1997. Also, I remember after Diana died, they were going to fire me.

Ed Israel and Dave Kopra wanted to get rid of me and they asked for a review or something and talked about firing me. I then had the manager of the sales execs, Bruce Maland (or whatever his last name was) and his sales asst. Melanie, offer me a job as a Sales Executive, to be trained to work on the sales team, doing outbound sales for Nike, Intel, whoever. I turned it down saying I was going back to college. I wanted a college degree. I'd had to wait all that time to go to college and I wanted to go still and wanted to do something besides straight business and something more people-service oriented. So I was thinking teaching, social work, something like that.

No one liked my idea. I had a very hard time getting hired after that job. Even though I had a written recommendation and everything. And then people came in and basically tried to loot my house when I had a yardsale in 1997. They wanted to take everything.

I remember too, that I usually had white or solid cream colored towels. I never veered from white or cream solids for my bath. But one day I picked out a bright midnight blue towel, just one, and I remember someone watching me in the store, in 1997 acted suprised and my housemate Shirina Edwin was weird about it.

Anyway, my orange flower water was in a little plastic bottle if I remember correctly. My rose water was in a dark semi-opaque cobalt blue bottle with a french label and the orange flower water was from the Muslim deli. I don't remember where I bought my rose flower water, I think it was a small boutique in Portland somewhere.

I made a dessert for company once, that was a plain cake and then you made this syrup with a flower-water and drizzled it across the cake so it soaked in. Serve. That was in 1997. I made it with rose water syrup.

It was a light sort of angel cake or pound cake type of cake and then no frosting but rose syrup across it. I was just looking up photos of the recipe and found one with the plain cake and an icing across it but there was no icing. It was a clear syrup and you couldn't see it on the cake. It just soaked in.

I think it was a semolina cake. The basbousa, namoura, basboosa, safra, tishpishti, raveni. I think it's mainly refered to as basboosa.

I made this, as the first middle eastern dessert I tried to make, in 1997. It was a plain cake without any icing and just a clear rose water or flower water syrup that soaked into the cake.

Anyway, that was then.

Here we are now--tortured.

Over semolina cake maybe. Who knows.

But I want my son back and I know the FBI sold him.

I know Ed Israel had more than passing interest about why I was going to college and what I was going to do. He said what are you going to college for. I said probably teaching or social service. He said there's not much money in social service. I specifically remember he discouraged me from going to college to get into social work or social services. I remember because then he told me he had a sister or sister-in-law who did this and she didn't make any money. I said I didn't care about money, I wanted to do something where I felt like I was helping people. I wouldn't know he had a relative who did this, if we didn't have this discussion.

I had a hard time getting work after 1997. It was like someone was trying to put up roadblocks to my success.

I still can't find the bottle of rose water that I had and used...I think it had a little glycerin in it, but it was for cooking. Aside from using it in dessert recipes, I splashed it on my face, throat, and wrists or I would dab it on.

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