Sunday, January 9, 2011

eat; red lentil and tomato soup

Seeing it's cold in the Northern Hemisphere of our wonderful world, I've decided to add this soup for those living here. I know it's bloody hot in the Southern Hemisphere, but I'm sure you guys will enjoy this soup when Melbourne has one of those cold summer days soon.

Tomato soup has definitely been a take it or leave it soup for me in the past. I grew up eating tomato, not drinking it! It wasn't until I tried this recipe that I became a fan of this humble soup. I made this once for a friend of mine, Julishka from Germany, who is an avid fan of tomato soup. She told us Australians that tomato soup shouldn't come from a can and I completely agree with her in terms of ready made canned soups, even though this recipe does call for a can of tomatoes!?! I am proud to announce that Julishka was so blown away with every mouthfull, that I had to email her the recipe as she was eating it, right then and there!!! There was no way she was going to leave my house without it!

So here it is and you will definitely blow away minds with this simple but super tasty recipe!

What you need;
1 large onion finely chopped
810g can of tomato, whole or chopped. (Remember what i said in my earlier post about canned tomato, if you can't get Annalisa brand, go organic only!) 
1 cup of washed red lentils
3 cups of vegetable stock
2 cloves of garlic
4 Tbl of olive oil
10 basil leaves, torn
salt and lots and lots of freshly cracked pepper

Heat the oil in a big saucepan. Once hot, add the chopped onions and cook until soft. Add the can of tomatoes, breaking them up slightly if using whole tomatoes.

Stir in the stock, add the red lentils and salt and pepper. Bring to boil, cover and simmer for about 30 mins or until the lentils are cooked. Add more water while cooking if need be.

When cooked, throw batches into a blender and blend away. At this stage, add the torn basil leaves and 2 cloves of garlic to one of the batches. Yes the garlic is uncooked but will bring out amazing flavours to this soup because of it!

As your batches are being blended, make sure you have a big bowl handy to pour the soup into. Once all complete, you can return it to the stovetop in the saucepan to re heat.

This soup is AMAZING served with an open grilled cheese sandwich. I've served it with vegan cheese above, thats why it looks a bit wrong (vegan cheese doesn't grill too well). You can also freeze the the left over soup.

Buon Appetito!!!

pink; untitled (rose quartz pillows)

Marina Abramovic is definitely an artist I would never have imagined writing about in my research on contemporary artists who have created pink work. She is the Queen of Intense, having topped most lists of 2010 'must see' exhibitions, for her show at MOMA last year titled The Artist Is Present. Very present she was indeed, as she sat  silently for a total of 736-hours and 30-minutes during March 14 to May 31, in the gallery surrounded by lights and dressed in what looked very similar to a Catholic priests robe. Visitors were invited to sit opposite her while they both stared into each others eyes, no words exchanged, for as long as the visitor was able. Talk about intense! This woman made people cry from simply starring into them, so much so that a F.B page was set up as a support group for 'sitters' so they could talk about their experience of sitting opposite the artist!

With this work, which could be seen as humorous, Abramovic creates a sense of deep contemplation around the realms of healing gemstones. The Rose Quartz is considered to be a stone which aids in emotional healing, especially of the heart. These healing stones are normally associated with hippy culture, pie-in-the-sky type attitude with their 'what one must do with the stone' instructions and 'cleansing by the moonlight' rituals. All too much effort for me!

Untitled(Rose Quartz pillows) created in 1994, is meant to represent the Tzadik according to Abramovic. The viewer is to achieve a synthesis of heart, mind and eros whilst standing or leaning into the 'pillows' which are positioned to touch the head, heart and groin, becoming a righteous person through the experience; a Tzadik.   

I find humour in Abramovic calling these pillows. Of course they are pillows!!!! Only she would consider a stone a pillow! She has held workshops and retreats for performance artists  where participants have been known to sleep outside, drink green tea and water only, count grains of rice, sitting and staring at an object for a ridiculously extended period of time and even starring at themselves all day, holding a hand held mirror. 

These 'pillows' are set in a room that looks more like a mausoleum than a room for healing, with the positioning of the 'pillows' in rows against the wall similar to memory plaques for the dead inside. The grey room looks cold and, as if beyond the temperature of freezing point, the pink stones look icy, not warm and inviting as pink often does. Is Abramovic suggesting to be a righteous person is to be close to death? Maybe this is her point and she is wanting us to experience the coldness of death as a reminder that we can be reborn and recreate only through the death of something, whether metaphorically or physically.

Ahhh Marina, thankyou for being who you are and presenting us with a perspective that is so intense it scares me off. 

I will take my pink clouds room for healing thanks!

love; 10 things I love this week
1. Panettone French Toast for brekky!!!! Katya and I enjoyed it all week following Christmas day when I made my first Panettone ever! If you give the Panettone recipe a go, follow it up the next few days by mixing 4 eggs with 2/3c of milk, a sprinkling of cinnamon and a few drops of vanilla essence. Fry it up in some butter and serve with maple syrup....LOVE!!!!! I was introduced to this website by a friend at LACE the other day. You can create your own movies using the characters available and have hours and hours of fun! It definitely removed the boredom of invigilating for a few hours by making these cute and sweet looking characters swear and curse and say rude things!  Give it a go!!!! Soooo much fun to be had...LOVE!!
3. Marilyn Manson. Yep, I have discovered him in a BIG way this past week while researching Alice in Wonderland stuff. He has been working on a film about Charles Lutwidge Dodgson/Lewis Carroll since 2006. Here is a link to the trailer. What an inspiration!!!! LOVE!!!!
4. Pipilotti Rists book Apricots Along The Streets. I ordered this book a couple of weeks ago and am waiting in anticipation for its arrival! She describes it as 'a book I would love to get from my twin sister, who only exists in my dreams'. Bring it on I say!!!!!! LOVE!!!!
5. Hot pink nail polish! I love it whilst wearing a black and white outfit. LOVE!

6. PINK CHAMPAGNE!!!!! I do love drinking pink bubbles, but I must admit, I hate the harsh hangover! I always ignore it when I've had a night on the bubbly, well try to anyways. LOVE!!!!

7. Macro video and still cameras....I WANT ONE!!!!! I have been working on a new vid and using macro within it and LOVING the detail!!!! Check out macro photography in google images or even better, check out macro video on youtube. Hours and hours of fun!!!! LOVE!

8. I know...sooooo Nineties, but I do love an oil burner. I bought myself one a few months ago and love having it burning away in the corner as I write. Lavender is my favourite. Bring back the oil burner!!!!!! LOVE!
9. Disco balls! Are they not the best invention EVER?!?!?! I used to have one at my last place, affectionately known as Number 12, that would come out for parties. One day I will have one in my bedroom. LOVE!!!!

10. Dressing up for a night on the town. From putting on my make up, to deciding what to wear, sometimes I find this part of the evening a lot more exciting than the evening itself! This is a pic of me last night going to Culver City Gallery Openings. I wore my sequined Mickey ears and completely lost count at the random compliments I received throughout the night. Mickey is definitely held dear to the Americans hearts...LOVE!!!!!