I've had quite a bit of down-time for the last 16 hours or so ...
We left Mindinao (southern Philippines) at noon yesterday (Saturday). It was an amazing week there -- the overflow of hospitality that we experienced by the host church was unbelievable. The joy of the Lord was so evident in every meal, every snack, every conversation ... they fed this large group for two weeks straight gigantic meals. Three whole roasted pigs over 3 weeks. Some meals, we had 4 or 5 kinds of meat (YAY for freshfreshfresh tuna!). Even as we were leaving, they were sharing their hearts and lives with us -- a group accompanied us to the airport and stood at the window waving until we took off. So, maybe there are still radical Is lamists blowing things up around there? God is in that place!
I was supposed to spend last night at a hotel down the street from the seminary where everyone else is staying, but some of the guy students felt like it would be safer for me to stay on campus for the night that I was by myself. So I've spent most of last night and today just lounging, getting caught up on personal emails and blog reading, getting caught up on sleep, and getting caught up on some whole grain fiber in my diet :p I'm going to the airport to pick up HH in just over an hour -- he's flying in from D haka after wrapping up 12 days of filming there; the culmination was a multi-denominational M B B leaders conference (apparently 35 groups had representatives there ... how's that for unity!). I got to chat with him briefly while he was waiting in the KL airport and I can't wait to hear more face-to-face (and to be face-to-face in general!).
Since I'm in "off" mode (trip/workwise), I thought I'd share what's been on my mind for the last couple of hours (besides HH): food! Cooking in my own kitchen! My culinary adventures over the last few weeks have been great (and they're not over yet), but I am very much looking forward to getting back in my own kitchen and eating light, healthy and my style. Here are a handful of recipes that I've tagged as ones I want to try:
Creamy Corn Soup with Roasted Poblano Chile. What's not to like? Creamy? Corn? Soup? Roasted Poblano? Seriously! Also, it's thickened with corn starch, so it's creamy without all the fat of tons of cream.
Peasant Lentil and Kale Soup. I've been wanting to cook more with both lentils and kale -- not only are they cheap, they are both crazy good for you and quite tasty to boot!
Pork Patties with Lime Leaves and Cilantro. I have frozen lime leaves from a Malaysian curry recipe experiment -- I got a bunch of fresh ones from Siam Thai. This sounds like a fun fusion dish that would be great served with an Asian cole slaw and/or some fresh spring rolls.
Simple, Perfect Chili. It's a PW-Cooks recipe, so it's bound to be delicious, if not necessarily healthy.
Spanish White Beans with Spinach and Sun-dried Tomatoes. Sounds simple, healthy and easy -- would be great paired with some "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day" (speaking of which, their "healthy" book is now out, and here's a link to the basic whole grain loaf -- can't wait to try it!!!)
Butternut Squash Risotto. This sounds like a fun experiment. To be honest, I'm contemplating if I could finagle it into our Thanksgiving menu, although it would probably have to replace the stuffing, which seems both a little sacriligious (if Thanksgiving eating were a religion) and unAmerican.
Coco-Cayenne Popcorn Balls. Because we can't re-enter American eating without including something unhealthy!
Soba Salad with Soy-Wasabi Vinagrette. This would be interesting to try with some whole wheat or brown rice spaghetti (for the whole grains). It might be quite good paired with the pork patties above!
Spicy Roasted Tomato and Black Bean Soup. This seems like a little more work than my go-to black bean soup recipe, but it's always fun to mix things up a bit!
Well, I'm off to pack up my stuff and prepare to meet my husband -- 2 weeks of travel in Asia together, one week separated, and then another week together. I feel so full -- so blessed -- to get to share most of these amazing experiences with my soulmate. Not only did God bring us together in an amazing way, but I continue to be amazed at how our passions, gifts and joys are aligning ... these few weeks in that regard are like a dream ... as I said before, I feel so full, so blessed.