Date Night Feta Dip with Pistachios, Chili Honey and Mint

Jun 3, 2015

Feta Dip |

My love language is most definitely, undeniably, food.  It took me a long time to see the pattern:  my personal rewards for a job well done, reasons to get together with friends that had fallen out of touch and ways to to connect with my husband all centred around eating great food.  When my husband and I first moved in together, I remember being shocked by my own domesticity, and it was during that time that I learned to massage the starch from arborio rice to make the perfect risotto, and took up the challenge of creating a multi-course Indian meal on my stove with two broken burners.  I realize now that it was the best way I knew how to show him how much he meant to me, and that I was committed to the life we were growing together.

I have a twinge of sadness, nowadays, when I realize that the realities of the 9-5 with two kids in tow (one of whom is fairly particular, in the way of toddlers, about what she eats) has caused us to rely more on those quickly whipped together weeknight standards that lack the flourish of Sunday dinner, or a romantic meal for two.   My heart is in it, surely, but there rarely seem to be enough hours in the day.

Feta Dip |

I love the idea that a fellow food blogger and food-as-love-language enthusiast Ashley Rodriguez had:  once a week, she and her husband put their three children to bed and then share a special dinner date together in the comfort of their own home.  The concept resonated strongly with her readers, and she published a cookbook called “Date Night In” just recently.  It occurred to me, though, that an evening of sharing food with my love doesn’t even have to be as elaborate as a three course meal with accompanying cocktail:  it can be as simple as a creative snack assembled easily and enjoyed together – even for only as long as a small bowl of whipped feta and fancy crackers lasts.  

This dip is remarkably exquisite considering the ease with which it can be pulled together; the flavours of sweet heat, fresh mint and salty cheese are punctuated by each crunch into a lightly roasted pistachio, and soon you’ll find yourself chasing down the perfect combination of these components to top each cracker.

 Feta Dip |

 How do you connect with your partner or other loved ones?  Do you make it a regular habit?

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The Becoming Podcast has been on a short hiatus while I focus on writing my book, but oh what a comeback episode I have for you!

This month, I spoke to Toko-pa Turner, who many of you may know as the unofficial patron saint of many of my circles and gatherings because of the sheer number of times I’ve quoted from the wisdom of her book, Belonging.

Toko-pa is a Canadian author, teacher, and dreamworker. Blending the mystical teachings of Sufism in which she was raised with a Jungian approach to dreams, she founded The Dream School in 2001, from which thousands of students have graduated. She is the author of the award-winning book, Belonging: Remembering Ourselves Home, which explores the themes of exile and belonging through the lens of dreams, mythology, and nature. This book has resonated for readers worldwide, and has been translated into 10 different languages so far. Her work focuses on the relationship between psyche and nature, and how to follow our inner wisdom to meet with the social, psychological, and ecological challenges of our time.

Here’s some of what Toko-pa and I talk about in this episode:

> The dream that changed Toko-pa’s life, causing her to question her career and, ultimately, her identity

> How we can court our dreams to support us during times of radical transformation – and the reasons so many of us have a hard time remembering and working with what shows up in our dreamscape

> Toko-pa’s perspective on the message of Belonging after the divisiveness our society has experienced in the years since it was published

> What happened for both Toko-pa and I when we fell out of belonging from the ideologies of the “wellness world”

> How to build community when you’re under-resourced

> “The Big Lie” when it comes to belonging, and how we can reclaim a sense of belonging to the greater family of things, as Mary Oliver so famously wrote

Listen to the episode on iTunes


Show Notes

Toko-pa’s Website

Belonging:  Remembering Ourselves Home, Toko-pa’s book

The David Abram video about animism mentioned in the interview

Toko-pa’s self-guided program, Dream Drops

Companion, the program that accompanies Belonging


Also, while you’re at it, if you enjoy The Becoming Podcast, I would be so grateful if you would rate and review, and even subscribe to it on iTunes.  That goes a long way to helping more and more people find and benefit from hearing these interviews!  Thank you so much!