11.20.08: the inner aspect

as tofurky (where's your E, tofurky?) day is fast upon us, it's probably time for me to start bothering you all about taking pictures for ye olde orphan thanksgiving photo pool. you don't need to be an orphan (or to cook orphans) to throw your images in with ours: almost any festive eats will do. for more on the concept (and to talk some kitchen smack), come on over!

on thanksgiving and kitchen smack, i confess that i just received my first weekly newsletter from gwyneth paltrow's goop. what is goop? per la paltrow,
Whether you want a good place to eat in London, some advice on where to stay in Austin, the recipe I made up this week, or some thoughts from one of my sages, GOOP is a little bit of everything that makes up my life.

Make your life good. Invest in what's real. Cook a meal for someone you love. Pause before reacting. Clean out your space.* Read something beautiful. Treat yourself to something. Go to a city you've never been to. Learn something new. Don't be lazy. Workout [sic] and stick with it. GOOP. Make it great.
goop infuriates just about everyone. i get that - she does swan about like she invented pilates and long blonde hair, as they say - but she's been so impressed with herself for so long that i've mellowed into being amused by rather than disgusted with her.** come on, people: she has sages. as i commented on wabes's site the other day, i think she might be my new mischa barton (with less triangle leg***).

that said, gwynnie's thanksgiving dessert joint sounds tasty.
Pumpkin Ice Cream Pie with Maple Whipped Cream

A cool alternative (literally) to traditional pumpkin pie. If you can find pumpkin ice cream, by all means use that. If not, here's a quick and easy way to make some using vanilla ice cream, good canned pumpkin and lots of wonderful spices. When you first make the mixture the spices might seem strong, but remember that their flavors get a bit muted when they're ice cold. If you're doing Thanksgiving for a large crowd, make two of these. One is good for a small crowd and the ice cream alone is a simple, fun desert [sic] for a party of two.

SERVES: 6, very generously
TIME: 20 minutes + at least 3 hours in the freezer

- 1 cup of graham cracker crumbs (about 1 sleeve, ground in the food processor)
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 5 tbsp melted butter
- 1 pint vanilla ice cream, softened
- 1 can pureed pumpkin (or 1-3/4 c fresh)
- 1/4 tsp each ground allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves
- Maple Whipped Cream (see recipe below)****

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter in a pie pan (why bother washing a mixing bowl?). Mix together with your fingers and then press evenly to cover the bottom and sides of the pan. It helps to press the mixture with the bottom of a small measuring cup. Bake for ten minutes or until light brown. Let cool while you prepare the filling.

In a large bowl, beat together the ice cream, pumpkin and spices. Spread evenly into the cooled pie shell and stick in the freezer for at least three hours before serving. When ready to serve, spread the top with Maple Whipped Cream.
potentially delectable, no? i say the sages turned in a solid effort this week.

we're trucking our goop up to providence for the holiday, where we'll be frolicking with jacob and megan. there's a chance that we might make it to plymouth rock itself, and the prospect is making me feel extra-festive this year: i'm hoping to convince everyone to rock costumes for dinner (best-case scenario: clue characters). our orphan thanksgiving photos...would be amazing.

imaginary reading group discussion questions

01 are you as excited as i am about photos of other people's food? last year we had pork buns shaped like pandas.

02 how do you feel about gwyneth paltrow and/or goop?

03 why does chris martin dress like a nutcracker?

04 what's on tap for your holiday?

*given our current economic climate, this phrasing is rather unfortunate.

**also, her husband draws most of my ire. he seems like a lovely person, but i ha-a-ate coldplay.

***which is sung to the tune of "particle man," in case you were wondering.

****1 c heavy cream and 2/3 tbsp maple syrup whisked into stiff peaks.


mari Webel said...

my (probably not) last word on GP: if she really talks like that, or writes like that, i'd dress like a nutcracker, too. i'd like to think that we blog how we chat, or at least how we write a good email, and if a blog doesn't make you at least want to talk with someone, and that someone is selling a lifestyle, that's sort of a bad sign.

also: whither the double O, GP?

i think, two years ago, i would have taken issue with you on ha-a-at-ing coldplay. but while i still like some songs a lot, and i did have fun at the concert, i'm just not really interested anymore. both ends of the martin-paltrow household are just too...deliberate.

as for the turkey, i will be hosting a potluck dinner (at a friend's house -- bigger oven) for a mixed group of germans and americans, maybe 10-12, with another friend who likes to cook. and lucky us, there are inexplicably fresh cranberries at my local supermarket - so cranberry sauce in addition to turkey & stuffing. someone in marketing figured out that a majority of the americans live in my neighborhood, too!

lauren said...

i forgot to mention that there's an excellent tara v. sarah on GP. forgive me:

"gwyneth paltrow: she is pretty."

"manson lamps jolie" - hee.

tom said...

In re 4: the long-awaited trip to London is next week. I'm praying for weather luck on the outbound trip -- snow in Toronto is forecast (grrrr). Saved $100 over domestic carriers, but might get clocked by the random snow squall in Canada, which of course never happens. Tom: super genius.

(One bit of good news on the economy -- the pound has totally tanked. Loonie too. Yay, greenback!)

Thus: searching for a turkey sandwich on Thursday. (I presume that there may be sporadic U.S. American friendly spots offering the bird, or perhaps goose. But definitely hit or miss.)

maggie said...

I think my Gwyneth hate peaked several years ago when my parents were watching Emma for the zillioneth time and I accused them of "liking her better than me." (My mother actually knew G.P. and Blythe Danner briefly in the 70s when G.P. was little and they attended the Quaker Meeting in West L.A., --and G.P. has a house in Santa Monica,--so my mother's propensity to discuss her lovingly was really high.) I think I burned myself out in that moment of rage and since then, the hate has kind of, as you say, mellowed.

valya said...

01) yes! and almost as excited to show off my own, i must say. food is so photogenic.

02) it made me feel uncool that i'd never heard of goop when all my friends were talking about it. but perhaps it's better that i'd been spared exposure.

03) i hate coldplay.

04) hosting thanksgiving for the first time! throwing a bonus family gathering on tuesday, complete with italy-in-autumn themed menu.

happy tofurky day! see you over at orphan thanksgiving.

G said...

01 yes! good food photos = culinary gauntlets. I hope mine are more resounding than Chandler's "whaa-pah!"

02 my high school latin teacher (yeah, pile it on) was a dead ringer for a brunette GP. For that, I have a soft spot in my heart for Gwyneth. Plus, welsh names are cool.

03 Who? Oh, right. Coldplay no comment.

04 on tap? valya's killer homemade limonata, plus local, cheap, and good sangiovese. Paired, of course, with too much food. stay tuned for photos!

jen said...


"...GOOP is a little bit of everything that makes up my life."

so, what she's saying is that her life is made of goop? sometimes there's some (metaphorical, spiritual and/or literal) goop in my life, but i generally try to keep that to myself.

my giant rant about GP is already in the comment section of wabe's blog, so i'll hold my tongue here.