Currently #13

Currently is a monthly post that highlights all the things I’m into right now. 

Oh, hey there! How's your fall going so far? I hope it feels grounding and fulfilling and fun. This season is a busy one and always seems to fly by. I'm so glad you've taken a few moments to be here and check in.

What a gorgeous time of year to be alive! The brisk weather, the rich rainbow of color that speckles the horizon and hearty, cozy comfort food. What's not to love? Actually, I'll tell you what: allergies. I know I'm not alone when I say the allergies have been on absolute fire this season. Mine are almost always worse in the fall than they are the spring, but this year has been something else. Shout out to everyone who's been drudging through life with a never ending sinus headache and a persistent itch in the back of the throat. I see you, and I commend your strength and perseverance. 

That photo above was taken just outside of QVC studios, which is where I've practically been living this month. I started representing a new brand, Greenhead Lobsters out of Maine, and they've been featured as the Food of the Month for October. So that has essentially meant a whole lot of air time for yours truly. It's a lovely time of year to be commuting to Southeastern Pennsylvania - the scenery has been nothing short of breathtaking, even on gloomy, rainy days like today.  

Chaser and I decided on the last day of September, on a total whim, to take on Sober October. Why? Because it's healthy to take a critical look at our habits and challenge ourselves to see if we can do without. At a time of year when everyone around us is getting sick, I want to be as healthy as I can, and booze almost always destroys my delicate, temperamental immune system. It's not easy, nor is it all that much fun, but it has already shown me a multitude of benefits, some of which I wasn't even really expecting (like all the money I've saved!).

Two glasses of wine a night isn't enough to give me a hangover, but until I cut myself off this month I didn't realize how much better I feel in the mornings when I don't drink anything at all. I didn't think about how much more energy I would have or how much clearer my head would be. I also didn't expect to feel noticeably happier and much, much, much less anxious. 

If I'm being totally honest with you, I've "cheated" on a two occasions with a glass of wine, both of which were for important reasons, and I'm very much looking forward to throwing a few back at my friends' wedding next weekend. But this challenge has still been incredibly eye opening, and as a result, I'm going to now think twice about opening up a bottle of wine while I cook dinner every night of the week.

That said, the holidays are right around the corner, so wish me luck. It's a practice. 

Currently Buzzing About...

  • If there's one article you to read this month, let this be it. It's been circling around in the food world for the past few weeks and it stopped me dead in my tracks. As a chef, recipe developer, and person who spends every waking second thinking about food, the question of what to make for dinner is one that continues to torture me on a daily basis. This article hits the nail on the head, and I would love to hear your thoughts on it: It's So Much More Than Cooking. (The Week)
  • Although I've long identified as a gardener, I've spent most of my adult life inexplicably killing one house plant after another. I've gotten considerably better at it, but I still struggle especially when the seasons change: Will All My Plants Die Now That It’s Cold Out? (The Cut)
  • Pink Himalayan Sea Salt is not the powerful, magical, healing crystal we've been lead to believe?? Gasp!: How Pink Salt Took Over Millennial Kitchens. (Get Pocket)
  • As someone with an unconventional, inconsistent and unpredictable career, I'm finding it harder and harder to clearly define my "time off" and fully disengage from work whenever I do. Is this the new normal?: Why You Never See Your Friends Anymore. (The Atlantic)
  • When Phoebe is fast asleep, twitching her paws and making adorable little high-pitched squeak-barks, she's apparently dreaming about Chaser and me, which is all I ever need to know in this world to be happy. Thank you to my friend Donnel for tagging me in this post on Facebook, because it put the BIGGEST smile on my face: 17 Cute, Uplifting and Happy Facts About Animals. (Buzfeed)

Currently Listening To...

This month I'm going in a totally different direction with my playlist. It's called Sweat Songs and it was designed for listening to while working out. Thanks to Sober October, I've replaced my daily wine habit with a running habit, and while it doesn't taste nearly as good, the high is arguably way better. This mix is heavily hip hop based with some fun pop tunes, a few oldies and just a teensy bit of indie because you know I can't help myself. I'll  be continually updating and adding songs to this playlist, because we gotta keep it fresh in order to stay interested. Feel free to share your favorite workout songs in the comments and I'll add them in! 

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Currently Watching...

  • John Goodman, Danny McBride and Adam Devine star in a hilarious new show about a fictional, world-famous televangelist family with a long tradition of deviance, greed and charitable work. If that sounds remotely funny to you, run, don't walk, to binge watch the entire first season: The Righteous Gemstones. (HBO)
  • This weekend we watched the long anticipated, highly hyped-up movie about the fate of the one and only Jesse Pinkman. Admittedly, I didn't like it nearly as much as I wanted to, but I think that's mostly because I had completely forgotten about, well, all of what happened at the end of Breaking Bad. My advice? Review the plot and ending of BB first and then give it a go - it was still enjoyable, especially if you loved the series: El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie. (Netflix)

Currently Cooking...

  • I've been craving my French Baked Toast with Cream and Eggs like crazy lately while also still trying to lay of the big G. (And I've yet to find a gluten-free bread that tastes remotely appealing - would love your recs!). But then I stumbled on this "Genius" recipe for Caramelized Cream Eggs (Food52) and I was instantly intrigued. They're on my to-make-immediately list. 
  • 'Tis the season for Apple Cider Doughnuts! (ColeyCooks) These babies are baked instead of fried, so they're just a teeny bit better for you. I've also made them with Cup4Cup gluten free flour with great results! 
  • We've been on a huge Indian food kick lately, trying just about every joint within a 30 mile radius. For various reasons, I've never had a ton of success cooking Indian food at home. It just never seems to taste right, but I'm going to give it another shot with Deb Perelman as my coach. She rarely, if ever, let's me down: Chicken Curry. (Smitten Kitchen) 
  • I recently watched Carla Lalli Music prepare this recipe on Bon Appetit's "Basically" Instagam story, and I wanted to eat it the second it was over. It looks so warm and comforting and flavorful and healthy! Now I just need to hunt down a ham hock. Hammy Chick Pea Soup. (Bon Appetit)

I appreciate you. Thanks for reading and stay cozy!

<3 Coley

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  1. Thanks for posting about this one. I was on the edge because I usually don’t like celeb memoirs but this one sounds great and thought provoking. The reality is that there are a lot of us brown skinned women who grow up isolated and I am happy to read about the experience others had in similar situations.

  2. “It’s so much more than cooking” really rang true. Now I understand why someone cooking for me is such a treat. It encompasses so much more than just cooking. Being “in control of the kitchen” is sometimes more if a burden than a coup.

    1. It's crazy, isn't it? I've felt this for so long and was never really able to articulate it, always thinking it was just me. But so many women have had the same response. Sometimes it's fun, but most of the time it's just draining, and never ever ending. I'm glad it resonated with you!

  3. This article could have been written by me. I had a similar meltdown last year over food prep, planning, etc. I just said to Greg the other day that I was feeling that pressure again. I think it’s the change of season, type of food I crave, it all requires more work. Greg would be happy with a box of Ritz and peanut butter for breakfast, lunch and dinner 🤷🏼‍♀️

    1. Me too, Cathy. Chaser says the same thing about being okay with something simple every night, but I think it's BS. Unfortunately I don't really know what the solution is, if there even is one at all, but it's at least nice to know that we all feel this way and we're not alone in our frustration. Thanks for the comment!