Saturday, November 26, 2011

Lessons from Mr. Rocky Road

It took me a few weeks to realize what Mr. Rocky Road had been telling me the whole time, that while I'm working on all the stuff I have to work on....well I should focus on that and not on dating. For the last year I've been back in school, working full time, writing a work of fiction with my sister and trying to have a personal life.

All burners on, all the time. And I'm exhausted.

This leads me to make decisions not based on facts but on only emotion. And emotion led me to think that making out with one of my closest male friends was a good decision. Which it wasn’t.

I didn’t really listen to him and I kept trying to convince him that what he needs is me. That what is best for him is if he and I date. This seemed logical in my mind. I mean, he and I had great conversations that could go on for hours, we could tease each other and make each other laugh. I could be honest with him like I've never been honest with someone before. I was sure that if he could just see me like I see him, that we would be happy.

Cut to me crying about how he didn’t like me. While I'm knee deep in some ice cream and a glass of wine.... I have this faint little glimmer someplace deep in my mind that I shouldn’t focus on men right now. It's small but it's there.

Around this time, my book club started reading 'How to Love an American Man' by Kristine Gasbarre. The book is about this young adult who returns home to help her Grandma Glo who is recovering from the death of her husband of sixty years.

The author is a lot like me, lost when it comes to men. So while I'm trying to figure out why I keep picking men who don’t want to date me, I get hit with the wisdom of an eighty year old woman.

I read the whole thing like a fish needs water. And it changed what I thought about how I dated. Basically, I've been getting it all wrong.

I do want love and I do want to get married and I do want kids.

BUT I also want to travel, I want to see plays, I want to be IN plays, I want to hike, I want to have lunch with my friends, I want to cook, I want to go to baseball games and football games and I want to experience all I can in this short amount of time that I have in this life.

To do this right, I have to focus less on trying to find him. He might never come and that's ok. I want to be a full person without out him. I want to be how Kristine Gasbarre puts it, “a woman who has goals, who knows herself and what she wants." Lucky for me, I pretty much already am and do. I just need to focus more on that!

Now, I know I won't be able to make this huge shift right away. That it will take practice and it will take time. But the thing is, I want to be the person who is free and who knows what she wants. I want my goals to take center stage and I want to be proud of who I am.

And I think I'm getting there.
In honor of my friend Mr. Rocky Road who apparently knows me better than myself, here's a recipe for Rocky Road ice cream. It will always be one of my favorites.

Rocky Road Ice Cream
Makes about 1 quart

What you need:
2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
5 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup whole milk
¾ cup sugar
Pinch of salt
5 egg yolks
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup miniature marshmallows
1 cup walnuts
½ cup chocolate chips

What you do:
1. Warm 1 cup of the cream with the cocoa powder in a medium saucepan, whisking to thoroughly blend the cocoa. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer at a very low boil for 30 seconds, whisking constantly. Remove from the heat and add the chopped chocolate, stirring until smooth. Then stir in the remaining 1 cup cream. Pour the mixture into a large bowl, scraping the saucepan as thoroughly as possible, and set a mesh strainer on top of the bowl.
2. Warm the milk, sugar, and salt in the same saucepan. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks. Slowly pour the warm milk into the egg yolks, whisking constantly, then scrape the warmed egg yolks back into the saucepan.
3. Stir the mixture constantly over medium heat with a heatproof spatula, scraping the bottom as you stir, until the mixture thickens and coats the spatula (and reaches 170 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer). Pour the custard through the strainer and stir it into the chocolate mixture until smooth, then stir in the vanilla. Stir until cool over an ice bath.
4. Chill the mixture thoroughly in the refrigerator, then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. (If the cold mixture is too thick to pour into your machine, whisk it vigorously to thin it out.) Once the ice cream has finished churning, fold in the marshmallows, walnuts and chocolate chips

1 comment:

  1. You are amazing! I love you!!! You are my best friend and I love reading all makes me think!!! thank you for that!!!


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