Archive for October, 2011
A gentle breeze blowing faintly against my nose
The right side of my hair in concert
A heart memory of a long lost love
A fleeting thought of what should be
As the breezes flow
Like the mist of the ocean spraying me with her glory
Hearing the gentle song
A soft breeze
A butterfly’s wing
As it prances, flirts, and play
Announcing the breathe of a kiss coming near
Along with the approach of sweet
Lingering words in my ear
And loving embraces unfold
The rising sun proclaims the light of day
In the souls of mankind still full of hope
Wisps of the coveted moon
Freeing her stillness
As she stands poignantly in the midnight sky
Looking for star dust that falls upon lovers dreams
Beacon like showing mankind
Her light in the brightest webs weaved
Ebb and tide with the acts of nature
Proclaiming the return of gentle and strong strength
Faint memories, retrospective hearts, happy hearts
Cologne still as vibrant as the first inhale
Lingering upon the pillow like freshly fallen snow
Basking in the glow
Of present and future wisps
Soft petals flowing like wisps of our being.
©Celestine McMullen Allen
Here is an eclectic combination of dishes that my taste buds have been screaming for. One of the dishes is a medley of brocoli,carrots, mushrooms, purple onions, black olives and chicken served over fettucine with a cream sauce. And remember, my taste buds do not like bland.
Another dish that I prepared was focused on an angus sirloin roast. Roasts were a meat of choice as I was growing up, and wanted to find a way to put a different spin to it. The roast presented is wrapped in bacon, cooked on a low oven, and then unveiled to brown the succulent dish. It was served with fried green beans and cabbage, believe it or not; but by the time I blended the flavors, they worked together. I should have made some roasted potatoes. Alas, next time.
Another dish I want to present is barbequed chicken breast. This dish exceeded my expectations because it was moist, seasoned well, and the sauce which stuck to the chicken was truly finger-licking good.
New Blog Series – Under My Pecan Tree – The Total Sum
I have had my blog now for two years. This site, My Pecan Tree Poetry Blog was launched in conjunction with the publishing of my first book of poetry – Voice From the Soul of Trees. The site consists of promotional posts about my book, poems, and interviews, reviews of my book and/or poetry, and informative links. I have now begun to add more content regarding the poetic world and commentaries on life and living it, hope, and the pursuit of happiness. I have also decided to start my first of many blogging series.
The first series is called Total Sum. The posts will embrace all of my god-given “me” as they manifest in my life –my love for God, my love for people, my love for nature, my love for writing, my love for music, my love for dance, my love for photography, and my love for good food and the joy I feel in my heart as I prepare dishes for my family and friends. All of these aspects combine to make the total sum of me and provide inspiration for my writing.
I have eclectic taste and interests. This blogging series allows me to express myself comprehensively, as does my poetry. This blogging project also allows me to bring back a long lost interest in writing essays. My writing style may not be the most prolific, but I do aspire to that goal as I continue to hone my craft. My writing style and my emotional connection to the various aspects of my heart-string and that which I hold near and dear will make for some interesting insights. I am more than happy to share as we sit together under My Pecan Tree - you know the one with hovering branches, knotty limbs, and deep roots. My Pecan Tree and My Total Sum run parallel – for it is in both of these places that I know and understand me.
My Pecan Tree and My Total Sum run parallel – for it is in both of these places that I know and understand me.
When I first started this blogging series, the intent was to share specific experiences, beliefs, and sentiments that I draw upon to define my actions, that make me smile, and that help me to understand the embrace of life. The foundation is a beautiful palette of hues, colors, and flavors that prevail in living as represented in the picture of this beautiful dish of spaghetti.
For those of you that know me, eating food is akin to experiencing this cataclysmic explosion of flavors that dance across my taste buds. With the right food combinations, my taste buds sing in harmony with the spices, textures, perfectly seasoned meats, and other provisions that makes the entree, the sandwich, the salad, the soup, or the stew perfect. Eating for me is not just for sustenance, it is to truly experience the combined food flavors. If the restaurant allows, I always ask for a special little tweak to the dish to make it uniquely for me. I am sure that I embarrass the guests in my party when this happens. But they know it is to be expected.
When I have guests at my home for dinner, my kitchen is my kitchen. I will allow company to do prep work – chopping onions, slicing and/or chopping bell peppers, and other tasks as these. But when it comes to putting it all together, that is my job. You see, I always have a plan. I know how I want the food items seasoned, I know how I want them to complement each other as I work through the different phases of the process, and I know what I want the end product to look and taste like – a beautiful presentation with layer upon layer of flavors that ”when combined, make me shout and sigh with glee“; one of those culinary taste bud experiences that the table gets quiet, and the next sounds that you hear are “uhmmm”, forks and knives gathering perfect portions, and the body language equates to children in a rocking chair while the taste buds are singing.
My culinary skills represent a part of my “My Total Sum”. I remember the days of my youth when as a child, our family kitchen was special. Our parents had a lot of specialties which included the best fried chicken marinated in, well, don’t want to share that secret, oyster stew, homemade hamburgers, pot roasts, SOS, and freshly grown vegetables. During slaughter season, our father prepared the best (hog headcheese – souse meat; me; I didn’t eat that), Brunswick stew, pork tenderloins, and the most perfectly seasoned patty sausage. I would be remiss if I failed to mention “our” potato salad. We only ate freshly ground chuck, round and sirloin for our hamburger. I am sure that I can speak on behalf of my siblings when I say that we took for granted that vegetable garden in our back yard consisting of okra, tomatoes, corn, peas,and beans that we laboriously picked from the garden and canned. To this day, one of my brothers and I fight to prepare meals and we have two generations of that delectable potato salad. He and I are also working together to recreate Dads’ Brunswick stew. We still have some work to do.
So with food preparation now, I have culinary delights from my childhood to pull from as I create food that I like to eat. Now, all of the dishes mentioned above are mostly southern, but my taste in foods have expanded to incorporate foods from numerous ethnic backgrounds – with Southern, Greek, Indian, and Italian being my favorite. When I go to the grocery store, my favorite isles to visit are the ethnic food section and the spice section. I have garnered a wide variety of spices. When I get ready to prepare a dish, I open the cupboard, think about the meat, envision the dish, pull my spices, and create an explosion of flavors that make my taste buds sing.
My total sum with food – letting all of my taste buds work together, as I did with a pot of spaghetti sauce that I recently made. Yes, everyone makes good spaghetti. But, my version is a little different. The dish is a hearty blending of green pepper, ground beef, onion, garlic, tomatoes, parsley, black olives, capers, blanketed with another level of toppings which also include marinated artichoke hearts. The dish was adorned with Italian sausages. Here are pictures of what I call Celeste’s Spaghetti.
The stages of preparation are represented. The first picture (upper left of the collage), represents the base for the sauce. It is a hearty combination of ground beef, onions, peppers, mushrooms, black olives, capers, tomatoes, basil, and other spices. The second picture shows the addition of the sauce once the stock has simmered. My preference for an additional meat for spaghetti are succulent Italian sausages that perfectly complement this hearty dish. With my spaghetti, I love an abundance of vegetables to top off the dish. I have used vegetables that are included in the stock – two different types of onion – yellow and purple, mushrooms, and peppers, and artichoke hearts, seasoned with a balsamic vinegar to create a contrast with other flavors of the dish.
The dish represents a harvest bounty. The dish represents a perfect blending of flavors reminiscent of the total sum of me.