Wednesday, December 7, 2011

eat; fakas

I am soooo feeling for all my friends in the Northern Hemisphere who are starting to experience the onset of winter. Oh dear, no thanks! We actually had a very cold weekend just gone by and it made me want to quit the salads I've been making and get onto what I imagine to be my last attempt at soup for quite a few months...well, maybe a good cold gazpacho will come out in the heat of mid summer! Today's post will be such a great one for all of you about to hit those upcoming cold months. This soup takes a while to cook on the stove and will warm up the house while doing so! It freezes well, which means a big pot of it will not go to waste! Love that!

Fakas is a Greek Lentil soup and one I have had many times at my friends mums house. She also makes a great chickpea soup which I will have to get my hands on the recipe soon for you all. Enjoy making this soup. Preparation is easy and watching this soup thicken up into a hearty meal is such fun between Facebook updates and checking your emails! LOL!
What you need;
1 1/2 cups brown lentils
1 large carrot
1 med onion
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 Tbls olive oil
2 Bay leaves
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 litre water
1 Tbls tomato paste
salt and pepper to taste

Start by soaking the lentils for at least six hours, overnight will be fine. Rinse and set aside as you chop the other ingredients. Crush the galic, chop the carrots into tiny cubes and ditto with the onions.

Pour the oil into your pot and when hot, add the garlic, carrot and onion and cook until the onion becomes transparent. Add the lentils, bay leaves, oregano and rosemary. Add the water and bring to the boil. Turn the flame down to simmer for about an hour.

Time to check your Facebook news feed! The soup only needs the occasional stir and may need a little more water. Once the hour is up, add the tomato paste, salt and pepper to taste and cook for a further 10 minutes. The great thing about this soup is that you cannot overcook it. The longer it cooks, the creamier it will become.

Vola! Soup is made! Buon Appetito!

I like to serve this soup with a yummy bread that is toasted, drizzled with olive oil and rubbed with a clove of garlic. YUM!

Another handy hint is to freeze the remainder of the tomato paste. To do this, measure out a tablespoon onto a chopping board covered in cling wrap and then freeze on the board. Once frozen, wrap each portion with cling wrap and place into a container. No more moldy jars of tomato paste in the refrigerator!

pink; oink

Video Still

I would LOVE to yap on about my own work in today's post as my exhibition at BUS Projects is still on (until the 17th of December if in Melbourne, Australia!) but pink does not appear in the work at all! You can check it out here on my other blog, which will surely satisfy the curious :0) 

It's been absolutely jumping here in Melbourne with graduation exhibitions at every art college signifying the end of an era for the studying artists. The other night, I went along to my college, the Victorian College of the Arts to check out the MFA show. WOW! Talk about overwhelmed! The whole art department was decked out with art from floor to ceiling, each graduating student given the largest exhibition space they will have for a while!

Pip Ryan is a friend of mine and she is graduating from the MFA program at the VCA this year. She installed her work in the photography department, darkening the space, projecting within doorways and using both small and large spaces to create a bizarre world of 'living' toy animals. As I began to write this post, I couldn't help but think of the childrens nursery rhyme about a farmer named Old MacDonald.
Old MacDonald had a farm, EE-I-EE-I-O,
And on that farm he had a [animal name], EE-I-EE-I-O,
With a [animal noise twice] here and a [animal noise twice] there
Here a [animal noise], there a [animal noise], everywhere a [animal noise twice]
Old MacDonald had a farm, EE-I-EE-I-O.
But Ryan's animals are very different to Old MacDonald's, that's for sure! A toy zoo of sorts, filled with wind up mice speeding around with no where to go, a giant sized gorrila beating a drum demanding our attention, a pig that oinked oppostie a duck that quacked, Pip Ryans world was created for us to meander through, watching these creeped out toy animals in their 'natural' environment, afterall, what is a 'natural' environment for an animal that is a plastic toy anyway? The animals all projected a sense of wishing they were real. The mouse spining in a crazy sped up circle, determined to become a real mouse with every sharp turn or knock against the wall, the toy duck quaked at unusual intervals; definitely not in a way a programed toy should behave and the gorrila?..let's just not go there!

Of course the pig stood out for me as it was the only pink animal in Ryan's toy zoo. Watching the 14 second video preview above gives a great sense of what the artist was trying to achieve. A plastic pig is manipulated to 'behave' as it's real-life cousin with a wire forcefully tugging and pulling at it's midriff making it oink on demand.  The human hand is hidden; the artists hand manipulating the wire and the hand that initially created the pig (most likely Chinese hands). Occasionally the artists hand does come into shot  reminding us (or is it the pig?) that no matter how natural this pig tries to behave, it is no real pig at the end of the day.  It is a human-made pig manipulated by the hand of a human to resemble and behave like a real pig. Simple. How can it really compete?

All of Ryan's animals showed struggle with this fact. I love this video and was completely mesmerized by this little pig, captivated by it's struggle, yet compelled by it's cute and adorable animated facial features. This is how we want pigs to look, right? Clean, cute, a wonderful shade of pink and creating such adorable sounds. Hmmm. The struggle us humans have with what is real and what we want our reality to be.

Pip Ryans work can be viewed at the Victorian College of the Arts until December 11th 12-5pm.

love; ten things i love this week

Well it's been a few weeks since my last post and soooooo much has happened that I am grateful for, it's crazy to only come up with ten! But I will try!

1. Creating work again! Yes it's been a while since I got out the saw and hammer to create a work but let me tell you, I certainly have the bug to work with wood again! LOVE!!!

2. Having help installing my show. Seriously, how great are friends when they come along to help out with something that means sooo much to you?!?!?! Thanks again guys (you know who you are ;0)

3. Opening night of my exhibition. Really, I think that's what most artists look forward to when making! Well, maybe just me. I always did love Show and Tell as a kid in Primary school! LOVE!!!!

4. My birthday with the fam :0) Yep, same Italian cake for every event in our family since 1974! LOVE!

5. Coming across this yesterday at the coffee shop near the gallery. LOVE!!!

6. Receiving an IPhone3G hand-me-down. WOW!!! Talk about changing my life! Now I check my emails and whats going on on F.B about 50 times a day rather than the usual 20! LOL! LOVE!


 7. PROCRASTIBAKING!!!!! What a great term! My friend Mel told me that's what I was doing when I spent the WHOLE day baking Italian biscuits and cake instead of actually doing my artwork! LOVE! 

8. Buying my mum a new stove! She wont accept rent from me so I decided to buy her this AMAZING stove. LOVE!!!

9. Getting yet another friend hooked on green smoothies!!!! YAY!!!!

10. Having time to write again! I have missed writing for eatpinklove and also myyearincarousel. I do love it and looking forward to writing more! LOVE!