This past weekend started with the most morose of spirits. On Friday, I sat down and did the grownup thing of evaluating my student debt, and fell into the depths of despair. That debt, it's a bugbear.
The next morning at Crossfit, I learned about the tragic death of Meg Menzies, ran for Meg, and cried while listening to stories from her close friends that had come out to run for her that day.
I walked into my friend Elizabeth's kitchen later that afternoon, shoulders tense and fraught from the preceding events, and looking forward to relaxing with my friend. We spent the afternoon cooking, eating and talking, and what a balm for the soul that sort of thing is. It is one of those things that make me feel present in the moment and so glad for it. Elizabeth is creative in the kitchen, and I love that when inspiration hits, she goes with it. This particular time, she was inspired by Sub Rosa bread and middle eastern fare, and she whipped up dishes that were a fanfare for the sight and tongue.
Along with leftovers, she sent me home with the book, Bread and Wine. I ate that thing up, quickly, savoring each chapter. Each chapter is a personal story followed by a recipe and it felt luxurious and private and inspiring and a lot of it resonated with me.
In the style of the book, which shares personal stories followed by recipes, I'm including a recipe below of the delicious lamb meatballs that were a part of our meal. They were fresh and comforting, just like my afternoon.
courtesy of Elizabeth Good
makes 15 meatballs
1 pound of ground lamb
6 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons of chopped mint
1 tablespoon of parsley
handful of pine nuts
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 teaspoon of pepper
1 teaspoon of lemon preserves, diced finely
100 grams of yogurt
zest of one lemon
juice of half a lemon
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon of chopped mint
3 tablespoons of olive oil
Mix all the ingredients of the meatball together. Roll into meatballs. Heat some olive oil in a skillet over medium heat until hot; add meatballs. Let them cook for 4-5 minutes on each side until cooked through.
Mix all the ingredients for the yogurt sauce and serve alongside the meatballs.