I spent the weekend hibernating in a book-writing cave located in Montréal, disguised as a hotel. (The cave was disguised, not me. And the cave metaphor, perfect in every way, belongs to Molly, not me.) I packed a lot of pens. And three notebooks. We took the train; I spent those travel hours proofreading all the pages of my book up to this point.

Fairmount Bagels + catching up | Tara O'Brady

It was a hefty stack of papers, 100-some-odd recipes, four years in the making, and countless in thought. Upon arriving in Montréal, I set up camp in the hotel and stayed put, save for some very good meals. Sean kept me caffeinated and supplied a box of these dreamy mint chocolates — thin rounds, dark and shining, mint-through-and-through, rather than the sort with the filling. I just ate the last of those chocolates, and for that, I am very sad.

I've long considered writing about this whole book process, the technical nitty-gritty and some of the more messy aspects. (Fear! Frustration! Caves. Reward! Drama.)  I've been composing it in my head, and in one of those notebooks. If the subject is something of interest to you, please let me know.

I've also wanted write about Montréal, properly. I tried before, but I know I've only scratched the surface of all I could say and I haven't done the city justice. Plus, I've got a list of the places I love that I'd be happy to share. Do give a nudge if you'd want to see that, too.

A propos of nothing, I'd really like this sandwich for lunch tomorrow. I'd say today, but inspired by one of this weekend's meals and a recipe from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, I made a batch of roasted carrot hummus about 10 minutes ago, then jacked it up with Aleppo pepper. I'm only waiting for lunchtime to bundle it up in a collard green with pickled beets and avocado. I have a container of sorghum and another of lentils, cooked and ready, and one will join in. I could add tabbouleh, and make tzatziki or Angela's creamy lemon dill dressing, or tuck in sliced cucumbers. Or I could skip the tabbouleh and steam rapini and blitz a quick salsa verde. We'll see. I've not gotten that far yet.

Asparagus + Pea Soup with Crisp Beans | Tara O'Brady

In other news, I can finally explain the image on top of my (way-too-late-to-the-game) Facebook page. The photograph is part of a set shot for UPPERCASE magazine; an asparagus and pea soup, mild and musky and sweet, topped off with crisped beans with lemon and shallot. I'd eat that soup plain quite happily, and those beans on toast or crackers, so it's two recipes in one, but in combination is when things really get going. The soup is in Issue #21, which will be on stands any day now. 

On the topic of green, these eggs, with wild greens. Come on now.

(And on the topic of the Facebook page, I'm planning on using it as a place for work outside this site site, plus book and event news, as there are some on the horizon. I'll give a head's up here, but full details there, in the hopes of keeping it all in one neat and tidy place.)

So, that's me on this end. I wish I had a proper recipe ready, but it was not in the cards. That said, it feels nice to have checked in, and caught up. Hope all's well and talk again soon.

Here's to you, pals. I'm going to go see about lunch.