08 June 2013

Carnival Cookies & Preferences

This morning as I ran to the farmers market, I noticed my freshly-loaded iPod shuffle was set on alphabetical sort by song title. Yeh, I didn’t think “Amame” followed “All Because of You.” I prefer to listen to albums in whole chunks with the songs in the artist’s intended order. Having the device on shuffle versus loop would make little difference. I could react in a few ways:
1)    Stay pissed off and complain about it. Take out earbuds in disgust.
2)    Accept it and see how the experience of random alphabetical order sounds.
3)    Change it!

I went with 2 and 3, dealing with it for the time I was out and then changing the sort to album by artist as soon as I returned home. In thinking about this, I of course had the bourgeois (and Catholic) guilt of “oh my gosh, why should I even care that my iPod isn’t working the way I’d like it to? I’m lucky to have this shiny device.” It doesn’t make it “better” that I mention the stab of guilt I felt while discussing this object I am privileged enough to own instead of discussing more “important” matters, such as creating world peace or alleviating poverty.

Sorry/not sorry, don’t have any ideas for those problems right now. From whence does such guilt arise, anyway? What purpose does it serve? In conventional reality, where people have preferences and equanimity is an ideal towards which one strives, it might just be my preference, whether conscious or not, to fret about my soundtrack rather than something beyond myself. Soundtrack I can control. Raising national minimum wage, I can’t control that, at least not directly.

Letting go of preferences, of the need for control (which is a preference), frees one from suffering. Comparing oneself to others, comparing one’s current state with one’s preferred state, brings suffering because the act of comparison, unless undertaken with complete equanimity, allows for dissatisfaction. Dissatisfaction is suffering. Follow?

OK, if you don’t follow, here are cookies anyway. My mom said they were “meh” in taste, and I believe her preference is for a sweeter cookie. I don’t understand why the blogosphwere went gaga over them, but I found Heidi Swanson’s carnival cookies to be a good breakfast cookie as they are essentially oats, nuts, and raisins bound with banana.

Shelling peanuts is therapeutic.

I learned the valuable skill of making stovetop popcorn.

1 1/2 cups popcorn (plain, air-popped stuff)

1 1/2 cups bananas (3 ripe)
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups GF rolled oats
1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt

1 cup shelled peanuts
1 cup raisins

Pop corn. Shell peanuts.

Once these initial prep work steps have been accomplished, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line two baking sheets with Silpats or parchment.

In a blender or food processor, blitz the bananas, oil, and vanilla. If you are making your own almond meal, pulse the almonds before completing this step. In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Add the wet to the dry and mix well. Fold in the popcorn, raisins, and peanuts.

Form 2-tablespoon balls or use a cookie scoop to transfer the dough to the sheets. Bake for 17-20 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through, until cookies are firm on the tops and browned on the bottoms. Cool for five minutes on the sheet before removing to a rack to cool completely.

Gothic Granola: deconstructing and rebuilding the nature of reality since 2011.

Parting Shots:
This is for Aunt Ann--I wore the black dress to work!

I don't really like the tropical fruit Shakeology, but it makes a decent lunch with ricemilk, kale, and carrots.

Strawberry-pineapple slush; got the consistency right the second day. Note the bottle of GT's kombucha in the second photo. The minuscule alcohol content in that fermented tea goes to my head.

I forgot that broccoli in smoothies tastes nasty against the "flat" background of non-dairy milk. Sucked it up and drank it anyway. Sometimes I strike out on smoothie combinations. Fortunately, they are balanced by a lot of winning combos.

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