What HAVE I Been Doing?

When we call friends or family, inevitably, someone will ask: “Whatcha been up to?” As a lead in to catching up.  Occasionally the question brings irritation, since what we’ve been doing says too much about the lack of excitement in our lives.  Even so, it can be a catalyst to sharing, and the reply can be:

“So glad you asked.”

In the week since I last wrote here, I blogged for Orange County on the idea of Mature Romance books. Would this be a successful genre? Mature Romances? I’d enjoy hearing your take on this idea.

On the recipe front, I came across cauliflower pizza crusts…seriously! I’ve tried almond flour crusts, which were yummy, but this was my first foray into cauliflower, though I have made cauliflower cheese “bread,” including a green chili version that is pretty yummy. I started with this recipe: Original Cauliflower Pizza Crust

1 cup cauliflower**
1 egg
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1/2 tsp fennel
1 tsp oregano
2 tsp parsley

toppings (make sure meats are cooked)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees Farenheit. Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray (or use parchment paper)

In a medium bowl, combine cauliflower, egg and mozzarella. Press evenly on the pan. Sprinkle evenly with fennel, oregano and parsley.

Bake at 450 degrees for 12-15 minutes (15-20 minutes if you double the recipe).

**Most of these recipes call for cooked, riced cauliflower, either fresh or frozen. Sometimes I will get fancy and steam my cauliflower but most of the time I toss the 12 ounce bag of frozen cauliflower into the microwave until it’s hot, then drain, and use my (favorite kitchen tool) stick blender to mash it.

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I made this as a pizza on Friday night and (sorry) gobbled it down too fast for pictures.  But the next morning I still had
some “dough” left.  Being of eclectic appetite, I decided to create a substitute for Indian Tacos (fried dough with all sorts of dangerously yummy toppings). While baking the crust, I cooked up some hot green chiles, then added eggs and cheese to the pan. Lacking fresh tomatoes (need to get to the market!) I used fire roasted salsa, and chopped up romaine lettuce as a garnish.  And it was GOOD.

On the writing front, I’ve been dusting off a series I started way back when, about a ranch in Northern New Mexico that serves as a resting place for people who need somewhere to decompress before easing back into their lives after battle. This first book concerns the daughter of a mercenary and a retired combatant. Both of them need to learn to forgive themselves for their past and trust each other if they’re going to have a future together.  It starts:

“She knew that walk.  With a slight hesitation in one leg he prowled like a wounded predator, conditioned to succeed against the most dangerous game of all.  Even limping, his reactions would be instantaneous, his balance superior.  By itself, his body would be a weapon.  He’d be the best man to have on your side in a battle.  After the battle, he’d unwind with a drink and a woman.  The drink would be strong and straight.  The woman would be bosomy and not too bright.  He’d very likely spend more time with the drink than the woman.”

So. Whatcha Been Up To???

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “What HAVE I Been Doing?

  1. Me? Finishing editing and avoiding flood water. Just another day. Must play with those cauliflower recipes

  2. Mature Romance sounds very interesting. You’re never too old to fall in love. As we mature, it seems harder and harder to find the right someone, especially after a death or a divorce. And elderly woman would love the genre. My widowed mom is always wondering if her widowed male neighbor will make a move. I laugh, but you never know! I foresee a mature romantic novel here, Mona!
    C.Constantine

  3. I say you need to write a cookbook, devoted entirely to pizzas! I don’t know if I’m brave enough to do the cauliflower crust but I’d love to see the almond flower.
    I enjoyed your New Mexico paragraph. This is the draft of my first paragraph of my story about a Desert Storm vet with PTSD:
    Kidder fisted his hands securely in his fleece lined pockets, testing the seams of his peacoat. An uneven ridge in the sidewalk caught the sole of his steel-toed boot, and he stumbled over it before swiftly regaining his balance. Kidder consciously relaxed his hands, and he kneaded the tiny pieces of lint caught inside the pocket seams. For a fraction of a second the air chilled each exhale into a tiny mist, but the vapor disintegrated as he walked through it.

    • Rebecca, I’m utterly convinced you’ve been up to no good. And I wouldn’t give up on cauliflower pizza so quickly. It’s far tastier than you might think. I accidentally left out the eggs yesterday and ended up with something very close to tortilla in texture.
      Carole, the cook book would be low carb, not just pizzas! And I enjoyed your excerpt. PTSD has been a serious issue long before it had a title.

  4. I solemly swear I have been up to no good. ;) I wish my family would eat that pizza. sigh… I can’t sneak healthy stuff in anywhere. Lucky they are learning to just suck it up and eat regularly.

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