Violins and Frozen Souffles

I dragged my temporary roommate along for a walk last weekend. Took Buddy with us, too, and we walked around the park before heading home to a delicious seafood feast (Clams! Spot prawns! Crab!).

But back to the walk for a minute. At one point, we came up to one of the corners of the park, right where a big willow tree casts a shadow over a small area covered with wood chips and exercise bars. Usually, the sounds coming from this part of the park are laboured breaths from exercise nuts, but today was serendipitously different. We heard music. Sitting on one of the benches were two men, instruments in hands, belting out a folk tune. One on the fiddle and the other on what looked like (but probably wasn’t) a lute. It was such an uplifting, fall-appropriate melody, it was impossible to not break out into a smile.

It’s been so long since I’ve heard the violin played live. The last time was, I think, in 2011, when I saw Joshua Bell (!!) perform at Carnegie Hall.

Hearing the fiddler in the park was delightful. I wanted to stop and listen, but Buddy was already tugging on the leash, I’m sure Radha wasn’t too interested in staying, and I’m far too shy to act in any way conspicuous.

While we rounded the corner and continued down the path, the air filling with sweet sound, I was also struck with a deep yearning. I haven’t played the violin in years–nor have I played the drums. I haven’t drawn anything beyond doodles since high school, and I haven’t bled out any stories in months. As the music receded into the distance, and Buddy stopped to piss on a tree, I turned to Radha and told her how uncreative I suddenly felt.

What do I do with my life now? I read the news. Browse tumblr. Read novels. Flip through fashion magazines. Think about my future. (Or lack thereof.) Read some more.

All I do is consume. And I like being a consumer, to be honest. But I now have an aggressive need to go back to creating things, too. And not academic papers or blog posts. The kind of creative work that’s about expressing yourself in more imaginative and unconventional ways… like creating worlds on paper, by type or by pencil, or culinary experimentation. Knitting. Singing. Making dioramas out of match sticks. Whatever.

That urge to create, it claws at my insides.

But I haven’t broken out my oil paints or picked up my violin (now in dire need of a tune-up, I’m sure). Considering that out of all my current everyday activities, the first to be sacrificed would be my homework–I know, I have my priorities straight–I figured the easiest, cleanest, smoothest way to get back into creating would be to try out a new dessert recipe.

Not exactly a foray back into the fine arts, but baking is a good stepping stone. I chose a raspberry frozen souffle recipe, perfect for those still basking beneath summer’s dying breaths.

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Letting the custard cool.

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Squishing frozen raspberries through a mesh sieve. That whole process looked like the aftermath of a violent, cannibalistic homicide.

ImageFolding the custard, whipped cream, and raspberry sauce in before adding the egg whites.

ImageHere’s Radha. She’s waiting for the completion of Ponderosa Residence, a place she will eventually move into and not sleep on an air mattress in my room anymore. I, too, am waiting for the completion of Ponderosa Residence, a palce she will eventually move into and not sleep on an air mattress in my room anymore.

ImageMunching away at the zucchini bread I made. I had put off making it for about a month–another sign of Old Me’s sad disinterest in making stuff.

I popped the mix into the freezer at around 9pm. The wait time is four and a half hours, but by midnight I was too impatient and pulled out a cup of frozen goodness. Topped it with some whipped cream and leftover frozen raspberries, and sat down to dig in.

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I wasn’t even hungry at this point, I just wanted food in my mouth.

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It tasted like a mix of ice cream and sorbet, if that makes sense. Probably doesn’t. But fun! I love the flavour of raspberry, more than raspberries themselves.

Now I’m off to start on my piece for creative writing. Wish me luck, and happy creating, everyone!

–Miriam

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