The Doctor, Part 45

Sharks.
Sharks and
claustrophobia.
Now:
sharks,
claustrophobia and
cancer.

Other than losing
my daughter, my wife,
these things
terrify
me:

when I was twenty
I lived alone
in a small house
on a beach
and after a long Friday
in my carpenter’s assistant
gig,
hauling lumber,
digging
postholes,
pounding and measuring,
I drove exhausted
to the video store
on a perfect summer night
and rented Jaws
on VHS,

after a few
Rolling Rocks
Brody and Hooper
were paddling
away from the shredded Orca
into the sunset
and I was carefully
placing
the mushrooms
my cousin had left
in the glove compartment
into my mouth,
chomping the heads off
first –

I walked through the door
with
the first rush,
grabbed a
flashlight
and headed to the water
even though
the moon
had turned
everything
blue,

curling sand
with my toes
I stared out
and out
hearing nothing,
removed my clothes
with
the next rush,
I looked up
to see if the stars
were alright with it
and I was
in the water,
up to my neck
fast,
remembering
very quickly
how to swim
vulnerable to
anything
for miles and miles,

I called out like Aquaman
sending psychic concentric circles
out
to all the living things,
an e-mail
to every
wiggly, creepy thing
and
a special dedication
went out
to
the sharks,

I splashed,
backstroking naked under the moon,
my body
perfect,
I swam
dangerous,
tapping
the rushes
for another length
until I was
arms heavy
tired,

on the beach
I got safe
in my clothes
and before I
turned
human again
I reached down
and howled,
calling
for a last splash,
finally:
a silver-white
fin to chase.

5 great: things for summer

5 great things for summer, Fairy Tale Hair Care Sun & Swim, Berry Breeze, Suntegrity, Infinite Aloe and Lifeway ProBugs Frozen

5 great things for summer, Fairy Tale Hair Care Sun & Swim, Berry Breeze, Suntegrity, Infinite Aloe and Lifeway ProBugs Frozen

The end of the school year is always way too busy for me and I get little done beyond school stuff. I have been sent quite a few summer related product samples lately, so here’s the highlight version to just get us through to the end of June when the skies will open and I’ll have a bit more time on my hands (instead of 47 to do lists that I just can’t get a handle on) and can write proper reviews. 

 

Suntegrity Skincare

Suntegrity Skincare

Suntegrity Skincare

This line of sun protecting skin care is both  top-rated and super safe. Th eline includes face & body products such as the Tinted Face Sunscreen/BB Cream and the Natural moisturizing Face & Sunscreen Primer

Infinite Aloe

Infinite Aloe

Infinite Aloe

This skin care line features Organic Aloe Vera as it’s key ingredient and offer products for men and women that include moisturizers and anti-aging products. There’s even a scrub and Microdermabrasion Cream

Fairy Tales Hair Sun & Swim Line  

I have a full review coming up on the Fairy Tales Hair Care line soon, but I wanted to get this one on here. the Sun & Swin line removes sea salt, chlorine and daily build-up with gentle fruit extracts. The line includes Lifeguard Clarifying Shampoo, Lemon-Aid Conditioner and CoCo Cabana Sun Spray. I’ve used other Fairy Tales products already, so I’m super excited to try these out after we start going to the pool in the coming weeks. I'll be testing it out on all of our hair post-pool. 

Lifeway ProBugs Frozen Pops 

These frozen pops are a big hit with my daughter. A great option for summer, these yummy pops offer 10 live and active probiotic cultures and are made with all natural ingredients and packed protein and calcium. Available in 3 flavors, they’re also gluten-free. 

Berry Breeze

Berry Breeze

Berry Breeze 

This snazzy little machine sits in your fridge and keeps all of your fruits and veggies fresh for a really, really long time. This one I’ve actually tested out and it really does work. All you need to do is add batteries and turn it on. It sanitizes your refrigerator, keeps your food fresher up to  2-3 times longer and eliminates odors. The Berry Breeze uses activated oxygen to clean the air and neutralize the ethylene gas that causes food to ripen and eventually spoil.

 

*Samples provided for review purposes.

The Doctor, Part 43

One friend
said he’s afraid to see me
when I’m skinnier
at the end of the summer,
when I’m bald –
he looked away
while we ate,

one friend
invited me
and my cancer
over
for a barbecue
to get his
girlfriend back
(I told her
he’s an ass
and he
got her back),

one friend
came to visit,
said
he’d done
the research
online,
he said
the odds
aren’t good,

lots of
friends
won’t tell me
but they
don’t want to go
to the hospital
and
some friends
don’t even call
and that’s okay,
it’s better
if they don’t know
what to say.

The entire The Doctor series can be read here.

At the green table: French Tomato Tart with Goat Cheese Dijon Mustard & Fresh Herbs

French Tomato Tart with Goat Cheese Dijon Mustard & Fresh Herbs

This tart is a perfect way to use the new heirloom and other ripe fresh tomatoes that are arriving at the farmer’s market or your favorite store. The recipe is adapted from one by David Lebovitz, who adapted it from Kate Hill. You can find her recipe for Tarte de Tomatoes Matelot in her book A Culinary Journey in Gascony.  

French Tomato Tart with Goat Cheese Dijon Mustard & Fresh Herbs

It works well as as a starter, cut into thin slices, or perhaps with a salad for lunch, served with a chilled rosé from Provence. The goat cheese, tomatoes, a bit of Dijon mustard and fresh herbs provide an especially good balance of flavors and textures. But you can substitute any type of cheese that melts well. I frequently use Gruyère, Comté, or Fontina. You can replace the the mustard with pesto or add a layer of caramelized onions under the tomatoes. You can also add a slight drizzle of honey over the tomatoes before baking the tart.

The pastry in the tart is a Pâte Brisée Salée or savory short crust and it produces an extremely rich, buttery and flaky crust.

INGREDIENTS:

Filling

2 or 3 large ripe tomatoes, heirloom if available, sliced, and placed in a colander, with a pinch of salt, for about 15 minutes, to drain

8 oz of fresh goat cheese, sliced into rounds or crumbled

2 tablespoons of chopped fresh herbs, such as basil, tarragon, thyme or chives

Extra-virgin olive oil Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Tart Dough

1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

4 1/2 ounces chilled unsalted butter, cut into cubes or rounds

sea salt

1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten 2-3 tablespoons of ice water

French Tomato Tart with Goat Cheese Dijon Mustard & Fresh Herbs

Method

Add the flour and a pinch of salt to the bowl of a food processor and pulse several times to mix the salt with the flour. Add the cold butter and pulse several times until the mixture is crumbly. You do not want the butter to be fully incorporated into the flour. Add 2 tablespoons of the ice water to the egg and then add it to the food processor. Pulse again until the dough just comes together . If it is still dry add the other tablespoon of water and pulse a few times until the dough does hold together. It is important to not overwork the dough.

You can also mix the ingredients with your fingers or a pastry blender until they are crumbly and hold together. A good detailed description of both methods, with images, can be found at Recipes from Tom.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and form it into a disk. Roll the dough until it is about 1/8” thick and large enough for your tart pan. Place the dough into the pan, trim the edges and dock the bottom of the pastry.

(The dough can rest in the refrigerator in plastic wrap for about an hour or overnight, but it is not necessary. The original recipe calls for placing the tart in the oven without resting and the results have always been outstanding for me. If you do let it rest in the refrigerator, remove the dough about 30 minutes before using.)

Preheat the oven to 425o F.

Spread a thin layer of Dijon mustard on the bottom of the tart and let it sit for a few minutes to dry. Arrange the tomatoes in a single layer on top of the mustard. Drizzle some olive oil on the tomatoes, sprinkle some of the fresh herbs and freshly ground black pepper. Then add the goat cheese on top of the tomatoes and sprinkle the balance of the fresh herbs.

Bake the tart for about 15 to 20 minutes. At that point the pastry should be a golden,the tomatoes tender and the cheese lightly caramelized on the edges. If the tart is not quite done, continue baking for another 5 to 10 minutes. You can also finish caramelizing the cheese under the broiler if necessary.

Sponsored post: IKEA Expo 2015 { #IKEAtemporary }

IKEA Expo 2015  #IKEAtemporary 

I am a big fan of IKEA kitchens. I’ve already done 3 of my own and I love not only how easy IKEA makes the whole process, but also how customizable and adaptable they are. IKEA is now taking that a step further while looking forward to the future. By asking questions about how we all will be living, cooking, eating in our homes in the future, IKEA is building a concept of future possibilities which will no doubt lead even more exciting options for making our kitchen the perfect-for-us place we want them to be. 

IKEA Expo 2015  #IKEAtemporary 

IKEA has set up #IKEAtemporary at the Milan World Expo, a temporary space to bring together those ideas and explore the possibilities. Their 2025 Concept Kitchen, created by students at Lund University and Eindhoven University of Technology, explores how bringing technology into the kitchen can make our daily cooking easier and more enjoyable, freeing up more time for living and enjoying life. IKEA HACKA is a kitchen that brings the IKEA Hack straight to IKEA itself with a simple modular kitchen that is meant to be personally customized to create a unique-to-you kitchen experience. And well, there’s more to come. For the next 6 months. IKEA has planned a full schedule of events, workshops, talks and cooking demos based around our lives in and around the kitchen.

IKEA Expo 2015  #IKEAtemporary 

IKEA Expo 2015  #IKEAtemporary 

If you can’t make it to Milan to visit the Expo, you can still be part of the conversation by visiting IKEA on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter at @IKEAtemporary. 

"Even more brainpower can only be a good thing. We want your thoughts, opinions and feedback on what we could improve. We believe it’s much better when you tell us how you want to live – and not the other way around. You could say that IKEA has the ingredients – but you have the recipes." - Marcus Engman, Design manager, IKEA of Sweden.


To see more now, visit ikeatemporary.com.

 

 

*This post has been sponsored by IKEA

The Doctor, Part 42

         “There ain’t no Jesus gonna come

           from the sky

           Now that I found out I can cry.”       

                    -“I Found Out” by John Lennon

The changes
are on,
I am a state of
devolve,

the bathroom,
a torture chamber,
Sean is
kneeling
at the pot,

I grab
the hair he still has
and smack him in the face,

where the fuck is the tough guy?!!,

I can’t feel it,
I spit twice,
I can’t feel it,

my voice is strained,
rough
when I yell
at myself,
it is a battle
to project,

the bathroom,
my pupa,
I cannot do
what I’m used to
and this
is only
round four,

I
struggle finding
my spark today,
I am
turning into
an
otherworldly
cancer
reptile:

my mouth is tight,
dry,
the lips are
numb from here,
the space
inside
smaller –

not like a place
you put food
anymore.

 

 

The entire The Doctor series can be found here.