I have been a very bad blogger (slapping own hand)… you see, it has instantaneously turned summer in Nebraska. I have heard some complain about the lack of spring but I , however, was made for 95 degree weather. The beginning of these hot weather months makes me giddy with delight, and I just can’t help but play in it (my hope is that, you too, have been frolicking in the sunshine and have not even noticed my absence)
So, in lieu of updating The Earthfood Experiment, I have been riding my bike all over the town soaking up rays. It’s seems in every direction I go I am riding uphill into the wind (it is the Midwest, after all)… but I don’t even care. My soul feels refreshed and my body rejuvenated after a long winter spent indoors. I really do wish I lived in a warmer climate. I have been acutely aware of this desire on some level for many years, but it really smacked me upside the brain and wriggled it’s way into my heart as I was pedaling to work yesterday. In that instant I became the owner of an intense longing to become a Mediterranean dweller, which may seem a hasty desire considering I’ve never even visited. But come on now, seriously!… when I think of this region I imagine lovely, decadent & healthy meals shared with loved ones, gorgeous vineyards, refreshing salty sea air, an appreciation for leisure and relaxation balanced with the daily activity of transporting oneself via foot or bike…. it seems like such a simple and joyful life compared to the hurried, stress laden, convenience stricken lifestyle we endure here.
Seeing as how I am currently unable to place myself in this culture I so long for, I’m thinking maybe I’ll just play pretend. I will live “as if” I were already there. I hear that what you focus on becomes your reality, so I think maybe instead of just longing for this Lifestyle I will bring the Mediterranean to the Midwest. Maybe I will employ my body as my main source of transportation. Maybe I’ll consume a mainly Mediterranean style, Earthfood heavy diet. Maybe I’ll focus on relationships and people as opposed to material objects and “accomplishment.” Maybe I will take time to stop and smell the roses.
Maybe the result will be a Healthy Body, a Healthy Soul & and a Healthy Mind… that is, after all, the goal of this Earthfood Experiment.
As a proper kick off to a proper Mediterranean Lifestyle, I give you:
The Antipasto Platter
Antipasto is traditionally the first course of an Italian meal and includes any number of foodstuffs such as cured meats, olives, marinated vegetables, and various cheeses usually topped with olive oil. I, however, prefer to add some bread and wine and turn this appetizer into a meal… which is just what I did this last Friday night with the lovely Debbi J, who just so happens to be my mother.
Here’s what was on my Antipasto Platter:
- Sun-dried Tomato Hummus
- Red bell peppers
- Marinated mushrooms and artichoke hearts (which I got directly from the Antipasto bar at the grocery store)
- Green Olives stuffed with Blue cheese, kalamata olives, and tapenade (a dip made from olives and olive oil) – also from the Antipasto bar
- Genoa salami slices which I spread fat free cream cheese on, floded in half, and wrapped a grape tomato in…. SO GOOD.
We sat outside and enjoyed good conversation, good wine, and good food… it was the perfect evening.
(For my lil’ bro’s graduation party the next day, I chopped up the Antipasto leftovers and tossed them in with some whole wheat pasta, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, lemon juice, crushed red pepper, basil, and salt&pepper… to make a de-lish Mediterranean pasta salad)