literary food blog, for readers with good taste.

What Tolstoy Knows About Change

What Tolstoy Knows About Change

This has been a week of changes. Not only did I not cook a Pakistani meal, I ate dinner out three times. Three. Times. Who am I? I also celebrated my one-month wedding anniversary (which is a real thing worth celebrating and also the reason for one of my dinners out), cut off five inches of my hair and had a real life tea party for my family and grandparents at our apartment. There was fine china involved. Seriously.

We all know about change. Most of us are resistant to it. The reason for that, I'd venture to guess, is that when we think of change it's of the seismic shift variety. The getting-married-and-moving-to-a-metropolitan-highrise variety. Not the eating-out-more-than-I'm-used-to-and-feeling-weird-about-it variety. But that's why Tolstoy was a genius and the rest of us aren't. He understood that it's in those moments of adjusting that life – the life we actually live, not the one we dream of achieving – takes place.

Is personality permanent? I don't think so. The Urdu word tareeka captures the essence of personality better than any multiple-choice test ever could. It translates literally to "manner" but encompasses much more; when you speak of a person's tareeka, you address their habits, temperament and attitudes. The thing is, tareeka is a totally "nurtured" concept. It develops with age and experience, and is born of the many small changes a person undergoes in the course of a lifetime.

If the small changes in my life are notable, it's only because I'm paying attention to them. Still, I hope that in some way they'll contribute to my tareeka. Perhaps this week's unusual happenings will turn me into a well-groomed, well-fed, generous being. I can wish, can't I?


- "Desire is not enough." - Words of wisdom from an award-winning poet named Roger Reeves

- Quinoa: Good, Evil, or Just Really Complicated?

- If you know me (and I hope you're getting to) you'll know that puns are pretty much my FAVORITE THING EVER

- As a work-from-home person, sometimes I crave the loving embrace of colleagues. Sometimes. Should I join a collective?


This week's cooking adventures were unremarkable and I was too busy eating to take pictures of my meals out, so here are some shots of the pastry class Shiraaz and I took last week (with some bonus shots of the treats at our tea party for my family!).

[As always, click photos to see full-size.]

Do you agree with me? Are small changes sometimes the best ones? I'm curious to see what you think, since I have a feeling some people might have strong opinions on the value of small versus big changes. Let 'er rip in the comments!

Read, eat and be merry, Amina

NW & Caramelized Onion, Gruyere and Bacon Dip

NW & Caramelized Onion, Gruyere and Bacon Dip

Eat Your Words: Ode and Pressure-Cooked

Eat Your Words: Ode and Pressure-Cooked