How to Make the Best Snake Gourd Stew!

There’s a certain satisfaction that comes with it being the end of a hard day. Especially if we accept it as part of life instead of trying hard to get the law of attraction right and figure out what is wrong with us for hours. Just knowing that we survived that day and its circumstances, and having faith in ourselves going forward is a good moment. Especially with soup and chocolate. I was feeling pretty satisfied at my tough day once I escaped to nature at night to listen to crickets.

In the middle of the day, I wanted to make the lentil stew I had planned, and finally got it started once my team left for the day to make deliveries. There never seems to be enough time to add the last few ingredients that would blow everyone away, though what I did create was really excellent. I began to simmer the lentils, to start the soup, and set the timer for 20 minutes while I chopped veggies. 10 minutes in, I noticed on my trusty routing software, that one of my drivers was stuck in the canyon for a little while and his phone wasn’t on. Concerned about what might be going on, I turned the heat off and dashed to Topanga to find him. I wasn’t sure what would become of this soup.

The soup wasn’t ruined, in fact when I arrived back, I found the soaking of the lentils for 30 minutes was done just right, and I began to put the rest of the ingredients in the pot.

Here’s some main things that made this recipe so great.

~Snake gourd. This is the best squash I’ve ever had. I’ve seen it nowhere. I asked a farmer to grow it for my company Earth Matterz, and he did.

~French Green Lentils have amazing texture. I get them from Kandarian Farm, which is the best you can get locally in LA. Also available at Earth Matterz.

~Shiso, lemon balm, and lemon thyme are an incredible mix of flavors for this stew.

~If I found my cumin, I would have added 2 teaspoons.

~If I had more time I would have added some rind of orange. I also would have picked the eggplant I had, to add on top of the stew.

This stew is amazing!

Snake Gourd and Lentil Stew

Ingredients

1 cup of french green lentils

4-5 cups of water

Tomatoes (a lb or less is enough)

1 red onion

A few sprigs of shiso, lemon balm, and at least half a bunch of lemon thyme.

Snake gourd (as much as you want, I used half of one that weights about 1.5 lbs.)

1 lb of potatoes

1 banana pepper

1 spicy hanako pepper

Handful of baby spinach

3 or more Passion Fruit

First, simmer the lentils for 20 minutes in 4-5 cups of water.

Stir fry the onions and a sweet pepper on a pan on low heat with olive oil. Once it browns and caramelizes, pour it into the simmering lentils.

After 10 minutes. Add freshly chopped tomatoes. Cut the passion fruit in half and spoon out the juice into the pot. Don’t use the shells of passion fruit. I know that sounds crazy, but I’ve known people to try it. That’s almost like eating fiber glass. Add the hanako pepper or another spicy pepper. Rather than to chop up the pepper, I cut the pepper in half, take the seeds out, and let it simmer in there. Then I take the pepper out when the stew is ready. Chop the fresh herbs and throw them in the pot.

Add the chopped potatoes. I chop them up really small so that they cook faster. After about 5 minutes of the potatoes cooking, I add the chopped squash. Cook until the squash is tender, turn off the heat, and stir in a handful of spinach.

These types of unique flavors and elements, are how I won the chili cook off years ago. It’s about finding unique ingredients, which you can find at Earth Matterz. 🙂

This is my favorite lentil stew today!

Love,

Kali Star

What Would You Do in 5 Minutes?

Last night I had a lucid dream. I believe I was holding two small balls in my hand, but they represented something I was eating. If you’ve had lucid dreams, that might make sense to you. I was with a Man and there were a lot of people around like it was a city, but we were in some kind of half way enclosed area.

Everyone stopped. They had all recieved a message from the divine.

“They’re all allowed to do whatever they want in 5 minutes. All rules in this earth, concepts, ideas, are all vanished for just that amount of time.” The Man with me said.

“Oh they’re all gonna end up with an STD.” I said. In looking at the people I was surrounded with and what they might be up to, I wasn’t particularly happy about this no rules for 5 minutes idea. I didn’t trust them. Almost like one of those scary vivid dreams where someone is chasing you.

Then the moment began for the 5 minutes, and I was in an energetic space of no rules. In that space I was given permission to completely release and do anything I wanted to do.

My choice in that moment was to throw the balls in the air and on the floor. It’s all I wanted, was to be free of holding onto them, to break the rules we have about not being able to throw something on the ground when you’re done with it. It was the energy behind what happened that gave me so much release. No rule. No guilt. Permission to do what I wanted right then.

Other than seeds and pits of fruits, pieces of veggies, I don’t throw things on the ground. However, I do feel that guilty feeling if I do, even if it’s a cherry seed. Not because I think there’s something wrong with it, because it’s not totally accepted by everyone in society yet. In this picture everyone was given permission not to be concerned about society.

If you had 5 minutes where all Earth rules vanished in space, and you could do anything you wanted, what would you do? What would be let go and released inside of you?

Artwork by Humberto Braga

Expression for our Teens

Last night I watched the Mr. Rogers movie until 3am. There’s a part where Opera talks to Mr. Rogers and he says as Parents we just need to remember what it was like to be a little one. She asks him why we forget what it’s like to be a little one?

There was something that I never forgot when I was a teenager, and it stayed with me all these years.

When I was 13, I wrote in my journal to make sure that I wouldn’t forget. I since lost the journal but it was such a big moment that writing it kept it in my memory forever. I remember how it felt to be me as a teen, as I cried my eyes out into my journal, feeling unloved and untrusted for my expression.

It was the biggest promise I made to my older self. It was so absolutely important to me.

I promised that when I had kids I would let them express themselves how they wanted to. I would let them wear the clothes they wanted to wear. I would celebrate their originality, and I would trust that they knew their path in life, and that they could safely express their individual style.

I used to wear rainbow tights to school and get yelled at for it. I would sometimes wear a cape, or marker my nose purple. Or see what would happen if I walked into class without shoes. I wore a midriff to celebrate my own body. Having small breasts was unusual and people thought I should get breast surgery later. So my way of celebrating my individual body type was to wear midriffs and I was yelled at for that. So I cried into my journal.

The photo above is me after High School. Photo below is me in middle school.

My Journaling worked, and I never forgot that feeling when I was writing it. I have a 16 year old Son today who does just that. Celebrates his original style. With neon green hair, a hello kitty mask, one earring on his ear, and a nose ring. He’s also ultra responsible, very talented, incredibly kind and polite, and gets mostly A’s in school. 🙂

Here we are getting his nose pierced as he turns away from the camera.

Love,

Kali Star