Blown Away. But Still Here.

I am. Blown. Away. By all your sincere and empathetic responses to my last post. To be honest, my finger quivered a bit before I hit the “publish” button. I don’t know what I was nervous about: Exposing an image of myself when I was soulless? Sounding too evangelical? Being potentially triggering?

But now, I’m glad I did it. It’s not just about exposing the frightening, soul-sucking side of an eating disorder. It’s not just about showing the depths to which I’ve sunk. It’s a heartfelt, passionate declaration against all the evil forces that binds and oppresses so many people out there: You. Don’t. Own. Me. Not anymore, not ever.

We all have our demons. Mine just happened to take a more physical form. But it pains me, to see so many loved ones around me, right within my own social circle, who struggle so much, each with their own obsessions and oppressions.

In fact, only just recently, two close friends of mine confessed to me about having suicidal thoughts. It scares me, the way they talk about themselves…with such disgust and self-contempt. It reminds me…frighteningly of me. It angers me, that a force beyond their own control can twist their thoughts and perceptions so much as to leech out every ounce of hope and joy in them.

Self-love. I’ve heard people say, it all starts with self-love. That you have to love yourself, before others can love you, too.

I don’t believe that. I believe that in order to be able to love yourself, you need to first receive and accept love from others. You might think, or say to yourself, Oh, but nobody can possibly love me…But you’re wrong. Somebody does love you. There is always someone, out there, who loves and thinks about you.

Stop trying to rationalize love. Love is irrational. You can’t possibly love anyone if you start being rational, because nobody is lovable. Everyone is flawed. But that’s what makes love so freaking beautiful. Because it overlooks all weaknesses and mistakes. It simply is. Because love comes from one source only, and that is God.

That is why I say I could never have come this far without Him. His direct love, and the love He showed through my family and friends, has enabled me to start loving myself, and treating myself the way I should—as someone precious, someone unique, someone worth loving.

If you cannot tell already, I am in a very good mood. I’m 4 hours early and sitting in style at the KAL Lounge:
IMG_3662 The best thing about business class…is definitely the lounge. Lovely, peaceful, quiet place to just kick back and enjoy.
IMG_3664And it has INTERNET and FREE FOOD! Always the biggest plus for me! (Well, technically, you pay like double the air ticket for this kind of service, but hey, my dad’s mileage paid for this, so it is doubly free for me!)
IMG_3663So I’m about to slip off my shoes, stretch out, and enjoy this whole plate here:
IMG_3665 I deserve it. I am just so relieved that everything is over. I finished a whole year of college without any mishaps (kind of). And I’ve got a hell of a trip waiting for me.

Now, I’ve already extended an invitation to join me in a feast around Asia. I guess I should let you know that I probably won’t be cooking for a long time. I should also let you know that I made this dish awhile ago. A seemingly long time ago, when I was still stuck between final exams and essays.

But I recall every taste and texture of it.

Kabocha Crepe with Creamy Edamame Filling

Kabocha Crepe:

  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/3 cup cooked kabocha, mashed
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon oil

Edamame filling:

  • 1 cup cooked edamame
  • 1 avocado
  • 4 tablespoon cream cheese
  • squeeze of lime juice (or lemon)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 apple, thinly sliced

To make the crepe, just blend all the crepe ingredients together. Let it sit for about 30 minutes or so. Then heat up pan with about a teaspoon oil or butter. Ladle in crepe batter and thin it out. Cook on one side; flip, cook the other.

For the edamame filling, blend everything together except for the apple.

Assemble the crepe: stuff each crepe with as much edamame filling as you want, and add the sliced apples.


Ooh. Looking classy. Delicate and simple.
IMG_3627 I’m not sure I can say this is so much a crepe than a very thin pancake…it didn’t thin out as much as I wanted it to, but then, it does have that dense kabocha in it. The texture was nice, though—sort of chewy, with a delicate kabocha flavor.
IMG_3619 The color was lovely, too. A gorgeous pastel orange.
IMG_3622 I made this random edamame filling because of Operation Flush-the-Pantry. I just had to use up the last of my bag of frozen edamame, an overripe avocado, and the last of my cream cheese.
It actually worked well in this crepe. Edamame has a naturally sweet and mild flavor, and together with the creamy smooth avocado, made for both a pleasant, light flavor and texture.
IMG_3629 I had some of that edamame filling left, which I later stuffed it into a wrap, with a Granny Smith apple and the goat’s brie I got from Papa Cristo’s, and then grilled:
IMG_3534 LOVE! Is anything more delightful than hot, melted brie?
IMG_3535 You can pretty much use this edamame filling for anything, other than sandwich filling or spread. Maybe as a dip…or stuffed into a chicken breast…or baked on top of salmon…
IMG_3536 But I like sandwiches and wraps. And I had to have my fill, since I don’t think I’ll be eating much sandwiches and wraps this summer, either.

By the way, Operation Flush-the-Pantry was a failure. I simply couldn’t finish everything! I almost wept as I threw out a few frozen bagels, a stick of butter, some frozen meat products, etc. Oh, and half a block of cheese.

Honestly, by the end of the week, I was slathering mayonnaise on toasted bagels, eating a pound of brussel sprouts in one sitting, and having two roasted kabochas for a “snack”. I did the best I could. At least I learned that more isn’t always better.

So. I guess I was just popping by to share this last dish, and to tell you that I was blown away by your kindness. I’m still here right now, but in 4 hours time, I’ll really be blown away.

See you in Korea (or Singapore)!

Question of the day: Tell me, quick— Who loves you?

And another fun question: Let’s say you’re Dorothy in Wizard of Oz, and you get a chance to be blown away, anywhere. Where would you want to go?

Final Reminder!!

I have moved to!!

Just a final reminder before I close down this site. WordPress has been nice, but it’s time for this blog to become “real”. Not sure what it means. It just sounded cool. Tee hee.

See you at the other side! :D


Dear Faithful Readers:

You are cordially invited to Sophia Lee’s new blog:

Thank you so much for sticking with B&S and watching its progress. It has now outgrown this rental territory, and has finally decided to settle at its own domain.

Please make the necessary changes and make the move with me! :-)




A Diarrhea of Pictures

I really shouldn’t be posting. I should be working on my new domain, but I can’t help it. It’s driving me insane and right now, and I just need the comfort of sticking to something that is basic and straightforward. Besides, I have tons and tons of pictures. So brace yourself. This post is gonna be a picture-diarrhea.

I usually only take pictures of food, but recently I’ve been taking more pictures of people, and less of food. I just haven’t been eating anything too interesting, since my parents are basically kimchi-and-rice people, and I don’t want to fill the fridge with “my” food (i.e: cheese) when I’ll be leaving in about 2 weeks.

Thus, I’ve found a more interesting model…My cousin! She flew in to Virginia to visit for the holidays, since otherwise she would be all alone in San Francisco…Say hi to Clara!
IMG_1815Isn’t she cute? She’s 2 years younger than me, the same age as my brother.
IMG_1821 And yeah, we look nothing alike. ;-)

Today, I took her to Washington D.C to take some pictures. My brother was our chauffeur, and his best friend, Chulhan, tagged along so my brother wouldn’t be the only male.

We basically stuck to a few tourist spots, just so Clara could brag to her friends that she visited the nation’s capitol. We went to the Washington Monument:
IMG_1876 Clara and I:
IMG_1880 My brother and Chulhan:
IMG_1882 We also went to the World War II Memorial:
IMG_1900 IMG_1901 Hey, California!
IMG_1898 I want to go back to the warm sunny weather…What can I say? I’m a wimp when it comes to cold weathers!

My brother makes the sketchiest expressions
IMG_1906 IMG_1895 IMG_1894 Clara makes the cutest expressions
IMG_1896 IMG_1921 IMG_1917 And I just look so damn cool whatever expression or poses I make! ;-)
IMG_1891 IMG_1889 IMG_1890 I bitch about how boring DC is, but I had no idea how beautiful and well-kept it can be…even in the winter with bald trees!
IMG_1907 God was definitely on our side today. The weather was actually perfect!
IMG_1911 IMG_1912Final stop was the Lincoln Memorial:
IMG_1919 IMG_1925 Hi, Lincoln, old fella! Watcha up to?
IMG_1926 Poor Lincoln, sitting there all day watching idiots like me taking pictures of him looking at me…
IMG_1928And then we stopped by for Starbucks. I’ve been deprived of coffee in my parents’ house, so my first real-brewed coffee (not the instant crap) in several days tasted like liquid crack to me!
IMG_1870 IMG_1865 IMG_1867 IMG_1869 IMG_1866Oh, Starbucks God, I worship thee! (Please don’t report me for heresy)
IMG_1902 I’ve also been baking up a storm! C & H Sugar generously provided me with a $20 gift certificate to pay for baking supplies to bake from their recipe collection. Check out their ample selection here…It took me several hours to read through each recipe, and I finally decided on four. I made the first two yesterday.

First, Crunchy Granola!
IMG_1836 Easiest recipe ever…just mix ingredients together, and bake!
IMG_1838 Oats, maple syrup, walnuts, coconut, sunflower seeds, C & H brown sugar, vegetable oil, cinnamon…The only changes I made was I used half-honey half-maple syrup, and added almonds and ground ginger. Bake for 45 minutes…
IMG_1858 And the BEST granola ever. Honestly. It was superb. I let my dad sample some, and he demanded I make another batch for him. Yes, demanded. This is hot stuff!
IMG_1853 All packaged and ready to send to some special people…:-)

I also baked their Cinnamon Apple Coffee Cake:
IMG_1839 The only difference I made was that I used butter instead of oil, and I made it in four layers rather than three.
IMG_1840 The result? Utter bliss. This was chock-full of apples! And sooo rich and moist…Amazing!
IMG_1841 Even my cousin, who insists that she “hates” cinnamon, couldn’t stop eating it.
IMG_1844 Can you see the four alternating layers of apples, cinnamon-sugar, and rich cake? Yumm…

Already, both recipes I’ve tested turned out hugely successful. I can’t wait to try out the other two recipes I have in mind from C & H Sugar’s recipe collection! Thanks, C & H!

In addition to those two goodies, I also tried my own savory version of nuts:

Zesty Nuts

  • 1 stick butter
  • 4 cups whole walnuts
  • 4 cups peanuts
  • 1 cup sesame seeds
  • grated Parmesan (the one that comes in a can)
  • dried Italian herb mix
  • Paprika
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Tabasco sauce
  • salt and pepper

Directions: Melt butter over stove-top. Stir in walnuts, peanuts, and sesame seeds. Mix in the spices and seasonings, according to taste. Spread into a baking sheet, and bake at 350 degrees in the oven until nice and crunchy.

IMG_1851 I actually thought it was pretty good…It has a distinct, savory flavor, with a buttery, yet crunchy texture. My parents, however, thought it needed some honey. They like their nuts caramelized and sweet.
IMG_1860 Here’s the zesty nuts, packaged:
IMG_1848 I used Martha Stewart’s gift bags. Not sure I like the woman, but she does have a great sense of style.

I’ve also been writing my hand off in cards!

Ah, winter holidays. I actually really enjoy doing all these stuff, but thank goodness it’s only once a year, because otherwise, my expression would probably look like this:

Hahahaha! Just had to share it, because it cracks me up every time I look at it!

I’ve got to jet now, but I forgot to say the most important thing ever…


Question of the day: What are you baking/making for the holidays?

I Am My Poison

I feel…like I’ve had a big weight lifted off my chest. I feel so light and relieved inside, I’m almost convinced that if I were to jump, I would leap 800 feet into the air!

Remember the little bullahoo over the friend whom I thought betrayed me? Well, I met up with her for lunch today, and it’s all over. No, not our friendship, but the misunderstanding and anger I’ve held against her. We had a good, casual talk, and I got to hear her point of the story…and boy, do I feel so much better!

No, I still don’t entirely understand why she had to lie to me, nor do I understand why she had to do what she did. But you know what? It doesn’t matter anymore. I’m just so relieved that we got a chance to bring everything to the table, face-to-face. We had an honest discussion, in which I expressed all my hurts and anger, and she responded by answering them honestly and sincerely.

And now…I’ve realized that I had overreacted. I had jumped into conclusions, and more misunderstandings arose because of that. I’ve also had a chance to think back more rationally about the past long friendship we had…all the ups and downs we’d endured together, and I’ve realized that there is no freaking way I want to lose our friendship just because of a petty grievance. In the light of our entire friendship, I would be a fool to let such a trivial matter break us up.

Honestly, my anger and confusion towards her have been crushing and stifling me these past few weeks. How ironical that I named the title of that angry post about her “Poisoned.” In truth, it was my own self-righteous anger and pride that was poisoning me. And even if I don’t completely understand…I’ve decided that I really need to let loose of this anger, because it is nothing but poison—not only for our old friendship, but to my own soul, my own peace of mind.

Thus I’ve let it go. And I feel…so freaking FREE! :D

I wonder if the contentment from good food helped. It sure didn’t hurt that we chose a restaurant that was favorable to both the wallet and the taste bud!

We (my friend, my brother and I) went to a local Thai restaurant called Born:
IMG_1785 It is a small place next to an Americanized Chinese restaurant and a shady market, but the interior was pleasantly modern and clean.

I loved how each table was adorned with a single real rose:
IMG_1786 The prices were amazingly cheap, too!
IMG_1787 $4.99 for a lunch entree! That’s even better than McDonald’s! We ordered a lot of dishes to share.

First up was Chicken satay:
IMG_1789 Skewers grill of spices marinated chicken served with cucumber relish & peanut-lemon-basil dipping
 IMG_1790 These chicken was definitely fresh-grilled, you could taste that smoky grilled char on the surface. The spices were lovely; not too strong, but with definite oomph.
IMG_1794 However, the peanut dressing was a little on the sweet side. I guess some people like that, but I’d rather have a spicier and more savory dressing.

IMG_1795 We also ordered a plate of Crispy Veggies Spring Roll:
IMG_1791 Fried spring rolls stuffed with taro, carrot, cabbage & bean thread served with sweet chili dipping
IMG_1793 Yum! I loved the toasted sesame seeds on top, and the spring rolls came freshly fried, so the exterior was delightfully crunchy!
IMG_1792 I was surprised how fresh the vegetables inside tasted, considering that they’ve been deep-fried.

For our entrees, I ordered the drunken noodles with chicken:
Chicken sautéed with a spicy chili basil sauce, tomato onion & flat rice noodle
I forgot to ask for “as spicy as possible”, but this turned out to be plenty spicy! AWESOME! I hate it when restaurants Americanize dishes and the “spicy” dish turns out to be mellow, with just an extra sprinkle of black pepper.

Not sure I understand what these curly carrot garnish is for, but they were pretty!
IMG_1805 My friend ordered the same thing, but fried rice-style:
IMG_1797 Rice fried with spicy chili basil sauce, with shrimp
IMG_1798 My brother, upon my request, ordered the Crispy Noodle Cake with Seafood:
IMG_1799 Bangkok’s night market style of light yellow bean-garlic gravy & broccoli over crispy egg noodle tossed with white pepper
IMG_1800 Oh em gii! I loved this. The noodles are crispy like uncooked ramen noodles, but turn springy and soft from that flavorful gravy…And it was quite a flavorful and rich gravy!
IMG_1802 IMG_1806 And again, what’s up with the carrot garnish?
IMG_1801 The portions were quite small. At least, they were for three hungry Asians, so we ordered another plate of drunken fried-rice… And we were surprised with this!
IMG_1807 A full dinner plate of drunken fried-rice!
IMG_1808 With mussels too!
IMG_1809 IMG_1810 That was incredibly nice of the chef to prepare a whole dinner plate with the works for us! Maybe it was my camera? Either way, I’m definitely returning to this place! >.<

Unfortunately, we had to pay for tea:
IMG_1788 But it was good tea, and the server refilled it about 5 times, so I think we got our money’s worth. ;-)

You know, I’ve come to realize that most of the time, I am my own inflictor. It was true with this certain relationship conflict, it was true for my dilemma on returning home, and it was certainly true for my own eating disorder that had ravaged me for 4 years.

There will always be problems in my life, and there will always be things that simply irritate or bother me…but it is up to me to ultimately face it with a positive mindset, and deal with it the healthy way. For me, that is to view things in the perspective of Christ, and to pray and ask God for detailed guidance, power and strength to overcome them. Otherwise, if I just keep it inside of me and let it fester, it will become a deadly poison, leeching off my inner peace and  happiness.

Sigh. There are so many things I need to change, and as the new year commences, I’ve been reflecting on these more than usual. I’ll share them soon, but let me organize them in my head first. :-)

Question of the day: What kind of self-infliction do you usually bring upon yourself? How do you resolve that?


Weathered Down

I’m back home! And I’m pretty weathered down. Literally, and figuratively. I was stuck in the middle seat of an overnight and over-packed flight back home, and I did not get a wink of sleep. I reached the Dulles airport at 6:30 am in the morning, and as soon as I got home, I crashed and slept till 4:30 in the afternoon.

Needless to say, my sleeping schedule is all messed up. Usually, I can easily fix it with some exercise and change in my eating patterns, but guess what hit the east coast…

IMG_1771 Snow
IMG_1772 …and more snow…
IMG_1773 In fact, it’s snowing even harder right now as I type.

IMG_1775 Oh, pretty white snow…You cover the earth with your gleaming crystals, pure and beautiful…


Damn you, damn you, damn you, you irritating speckled fluff! I’m going crrraaazy stuck here at home! And to think Los Angeles is a balmy 70 degrees right now! Needless to say, I’ve been really restless. I’ve been strutting around the house poking my nose into my parents’ business. I think even my parents are wishing I’m in L.A. right now. >.<

Okay, fine. Being cooped up at home with nothing to do and nothing to eat isn’t the worst thing in the world. At least I’m home. I’m not basking under the SoCal sun, but I’m basking under my parents’ love.
IMG_1776 That’s my dad, preparing for Sunday’s sermon…

And my mom, nagging at me to wash my face:
IMG_1774 Here’s a couple of wonderful people who never tires of listening to me talk about me. Hee hee. Look, they even cleaned up my room:
IMG_1768 But they neglected to burn this pillow:
IMG_1770 Still, my restlessness was going to stifle me. So my dad proposed an adventure: Let’s go driving in this horrid snowstorm! What a marvelous idea!

We decided to drive to the local Korean supermarket to stock up on some groceries. Now, I was definitely perking up!
IMG_1779 That’s me, perking up. Sort of.

Well, I got to wear the new  hat my mom bought me from Korea. Fluffy and pink. Not really my style, but it’s cute! :-)
IMG_1781 And somehow, even though we inched in the pace of a roller-skating granny, we made  it to our destination!
IMG_1782 Super H Mart. Love this place. I missed it!

I got my mom to stand still for a picture:
IMG_1783 And then we went in and bought about 10 lbs of sweet potatoes. And some other stuff. I forgot.

So. While I bemoan my plight here, I’m sure many east coasters are telling me to shush up. Lord knows how much worse it is north! Brrr…

Okay. Think happy, warm thoughts…Well, there’s good food. And good friends. And warm weather. Ah yes, I believe I still have yet to share my last lunch with Mimi before we parted ways. We were supposed to meet with Kathryn for sushi, but the poor girl got hailed with a terrible stomachache, so Mimi and I settled for the international food court at our University Village.

We decided on Thai. I got the BBQ pork noodles:
IMG_1726 With the soup on the side:
IMG_1727 Yum, MSG! It was chock-full of MSG. You could even see the MSG particles in it. I lapped it up. Delicious!

And Mimi got the Pad Sew Iw again:
IMG_1728 Unfortunately this time her dish was a bit on the dry side. Bad for her, good for me, since I took the leftovers home. ;-)
IMG_1729 Mine was just mediocre, too, but because it reminded me of a Singaporean dish so much, I could not help finishing it:
And the hot sauce makes it so much better…
IMG_1731 IMG_1732 I did, however, love the bean sprouts hidden underneath:
IMG_1734 Correct me if I’m wrong…but I’m pretty sure this is not Thai food. In fact, it seems like a Hong Kong dish: wanton noodles with char siew pork.
IMG_1737 Ah well. Hong Kong, Thai. They all look the same! (I’m being sarcastic, in case you didn’t already know).

Mimi was a sweetheart and gave me an early  Christmas gift:
IMG_1733 Two DVDs:
IMG_1735 Heathers and Casanova (LOVED Heath Ledger!)

And a Probar and chocolates:
IMG_1736 They were gone by that evening as snack. ;-)

I, however, was a horrible friend and didn’t get her anything. :-(
I know, I know…But I forgot that you’re supposed to give gifts on Christmas! My family never did this tradition. I’ve always had a pretty giftless Christmas…

Anyway. I’m right now working on my new domain. I’ve already signed up and have imported my blog, but being technically-challenged, I’m having massive troubles with the themes and CSS and blah blah blah. I don’t have a clue what I’m doing, but I’ll figure it out. But please stay in tune for my new blog! :-)

Question of the day: What do you do when there’s a snowstorm? Go out and build a snowman? Sit around the house drinking hot cocoa? Hibernate?

P.S. Planning a DC blogger lunch meet-up, probably sometime between January 1-4. Please email me:

“They” vs. Me

You can see it in their faces. You can see it in the way they excitedly drag their luggage, you can feel it in the extra bounce in their steps, you can hear it in their high-pitched voices. All the students are preparing to return home for the winter break, and they just cannot wait to be back home.

But I have a confession. I’m not looking forward to going back home at all. In fact, at one point…I was dreading it.

Don’t get me wrong—I can’t wait to see my family, my friends, my dear church members…But at the same time, I don’t want to be seen by them. Because I’ll no longer just be Sophia Lee, college student. I’ll be Sophia Lee, the Anorexic pastor’s daughter.

It’s tough being a pastor’s kid. You’re always on the pedestal. Inevitably, the pastor (my dad) will mention me in his sermons, which will then be downloaded into the internet and spread worldwide. Inevitably, people will be staring at me, observing me and noticing whatever weight I have gained, whatever I’m eating, etc. Inevitably, there will be people coming up to me to tell me they are “praying against the devil within” me. Inevitably, I will feel like I’m still an Anorexic.

I guess I can’t blame them. It is normal that people would expect certain things out of a pastor’s daughter, particularly great pastor like my dad. And in truth, these people in church have been absolute angels. Except for a few individuals who used me to attack my dad, they have been praying for me and encouraging me all throughout my four years of struggling with this vicious disease.

But that’s precisely the point…I always get this nagging feeling that they’re expecting something from me. Their love and attention on me feels like wet cement dripping on my shoulders. The more they shower attention on me, the more that cement molds itself around me, and as it dries, imprisons me into a statue of clay. I feel like I have to conform myself to whatever they expect me to be. And oh, dear God, I feel so damn stifled!

At least, this is what I’ve been telling God all week. I have no one else to turn to, and He’s the only one who truly understands. So I’ve been bitching and moaning about all the pressures “they” are putting on me. And then, God shut me up by asking me a simple question: “Who is this they you keep mentioning?”

Hm. Good question. Who is “they”?

Honestly, I can’t pinpoint one person who makes me feel this way. When I think about each individual, all I can remember is the exact details of how much they cared for me.

And that’s when I realized— that “they”? It’s me. I’m the one who is confining and oppressing myself. I’m the one who’s working myself up with anxiety and stress. I’m the one who keeps feeling like I should do this, I should do that.

Social pressures? It’s really all from the inside. It’s all about the point of view, and a sense of belonging.

I guess I’ve never really felt like I belonged there. In my eyes, I was the sick patient, and they were the ones who looked at me with pity. I was the odd one out, the emaciated girl who looked like a monster. And I certainly felt like a monster. I was incredibly insecure, and these insecurities fed on every single action and speech that others made by twisting them into a skewed perception.

Well, it’s time to break that cycle of insecurities and negative perceptions. I refuse to go back home with my head bowed low and my eyes shifting around suspiciously, almost actively seeking out things that will prove my insecurities right.

No, I’m going to smile. I’m going to laugh. I’m going to exude confidence. Of course, as a pastor’s daughter with a rather scandalous past, I won’t be able to entirely avoid the gaze of others, but you know what? I’ll just show myself off as a living testimony of God’s grace. Look at me, everybody! Look what God did for me! I may be weak and flawed, but God deemed me worthy enough to heal me! If I have to endure a bit of unwanted attention to manifest God’s amazing power and love, so be it!

And honestly—I think I better get used to that attention, because I am pretty freaking amazing like that. ;-)
I mean, my brain just astounds me how brilliant it is! I’ve been trying to use up all the bits and scraps leftover in my fridge and pantry before I left town, and boy I came up with some pretty darn good creations!

So indulge me and pretend this is the best creation ever:

Sweet Potatoes Stewed in Coconut Milk and Peanut Butter

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 big-ass sweet potato, chopped into 1-inch chunks
  • about 1 cup coconut milk, maybe more
  • 2 spoonfuls crunchy peanut butter
  • balsamic vinegar (about 1 tablespoon?)
  • lime juice (optional)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch garam marsala
  • salt and pepper
  • handful raisins
  • 2 slices provolone cheese, diced

In a pot, fry up the garlic and onion, until fragrant and slightly softened. Toss in the sweet potato. Stir to mix, then pour in the coconut milk with all the rest of the ingredients except the raisins and cheese.
IMG_1738 Bring the mixture to a boil, and then cover and simmer for about 20 minutes until the sweet potato is cooked through and the sauce is reduced. Stir in the raisins.

Transfer the stewed sweet potato into a dish, and top with provolone cheese. Serve!
IMG_1758 I admit, it’s rather monotone in color. I would have added some sprinkle of chopped green onions, but I had none. Spinach would also have been nice, but I also had none of that.
IMG_1763 Still, the taste was incredible. I mean, you’ve got it all…sweet potatoes, coconut milk, and peanut butter. You never would have thought so, but the combination works. It freaking works!
IMG_1761 How should I describe the taste? It’s rich. It’s sensuous. It’s sweet, yet nutty and spicy at the same time. The only alteration I’ll make for next time is adding a squeeze of lime juice. It just needed a bit more acid in there.IMG_1759
And I loved the crunchy peanut butter in there, which added bits of chopped peanuts. I suppose you can add your own.
IMG_1762 And ooey, gooey cheese. Mmm. I almost put an egg on top, but I used the egg for another dish (recipe to come!).
IMG_1764 All hail to Sophia, Queen of Crazy Dishes! ;-)
IMG_1765 I think I’ve done enough self-praising. Now it’s your turn. Haha, just kidding! But you know what? It feels nice to be able to let loose a little, and even poke fun at myself. I take myself too seriously sometimes!

Anyway. In about 12 hours, I’ll be flying back home to Virginia…See you in the East Coast!

Question of the day: Do you feel any social pressures, especially during this holiday season? How do you overcome that?