I have been writing this post for cream of asparagus and carrot soup for a while now, it’s only been a week, but it has been torturing me. I came down with a nasty case of writer’s block. I started to write, then deleted, stared at the page for a while, then repeated the process several times. Getting desperate I even tried writing this post in my notebook. I’m a paper kind of gal so when writers block hits me I usually find the cure by returning to pen and paper. But so such luck this time. After a few days of this I strongly considered simply posting ‘Here is that soup recipe I promised. Enjoy!‘ But I’d like to think you my dear readers are at least slightly interested in what I have to say and deserve better than.. oh by the way here’s that recipe.
So why was I suffering from writer’s block? Well after some self reflection and I’ve come up with two reasons.
First I’ve had a house guest. And while I enjoy the company and happy to see my friend, I’m a creature of habit, break my routine and I feel all out of sorts. Aka writing mojo is broken. In my academic life I’ve been taught that it is good to set a writing routine, pick a time of day and write that same time each day. Well that has never, ever worked for me. My free spirit needs to write when the inspiration strikes me, whether it is blog post or an academic paper, I write when I feel like otherwise it is just a waste of time. Not to mention when I write I like the quiet and the space. My brother jokes that I would a great hermit. I’m beginning to think he is right.
Second is slightly more complicated than the first. Lovely husband wasn’t so lovely last week. And each time I started to write, it turned into a marriage related rant. The name of my blog is Un Assaggio of Food, Wine and Marriage so perhaps sharing when things aren’t so rosy is part of blog, it’s my voice on my marriage, but every time I wrote it I felt like I was being slightly unfair to T. The scene from Julie & Julia kept playing in my head when Julie’s husband told her not to write about their fight on her blog. Like Julie I struggled with this. So I choose not to write at all.
With some time and some distance from said fight, I have found my mojo and I can share what I’ve learned. I’ve learned that without realizing it we can put expectations on each other. Those expectations can be stifling. It may be well meaning, an action or comment said out of concern, but it is not always heard that way. Having an expectation to live up can be motivating to some, to others it can force them to push against what is being asked of them. So what I have learned is that expectations equals unhappiness.
Moving forward instead of focusing on a desired outcome I expect, particularly focusing on an outcome I’m afraid of, I am going to focus on gratitude. Easy? Probably not, but I’m hoping by letting go of what I expect I will have more to be grateful for.
For now I will leave you with this recipe for cream of asparagus and carrot soup, which I hope you will be grateful to have.
- ½ cup finely diced onion
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 small bunch of asparagus (~15 spears), chopped
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 bayleaf
- ¼ cup buttermilk
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Heat oil in a medium sized stock pot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, stir till softened 3-5 minutes. Add thyme and stir through.
- Add carrots and asparagus, stir over medium heat, season with salt and pepper. Add broth and bay leaf and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for 20 mins.
- Remove from heat, remove bay leaf and blend with an immersion blender until smooth.
- Return to low heat and slowly stir in buttermilk. Simmer for 5 mins, check seasoning and add salt or pepper if necessary.
- Serve with soda bread and a green salad.