tea_austen

Tara Austen Weaver

Writer. Editor. Adventurer. Gardener. Hiker. Cook. I share what I find astonishing and beautiful. New book: ORCHARD HOUSE, out now. Seattle + beyond

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Beauty and decay. Happy Monday. #orchardhousegarden #dahlias
When you’re at Friendsgiving but still full of dumplings, you enjoy the atmosphere and the conversation and mostly eat salad. #dumplings >stuffing
And then, as if an entire dining table of dumplings wasn’t happy-making enough, @kairuy made the magic rainbow jello squares that cause me feel like I’m eight years old (a particularly delighted eight-year-old at that). Thank you, K. I will never have the patience to make these myself, so I appreciate them even more.
Today was much anticipated: Cookbook Club did @andreanguyen88 ’s Asian Dumpling Cookbook and everything was so good.
End of the season. Glad to see it (it’s chilly out here).
Grateful for each last day of sun. #seattle
New goal: to live in a way that causes people to send you thank you notes. Bonus points for when they match your Saturday morning teacup. But honestly, these days I want to slow it all down: cards and letters and shared meals and cups of tea and the sort of laughter that comes from in-person connection and not from internet memes. I want to care and be cared for, to invest in people and not things, to feel, at the end of the day and the week, that my hours were well spent. What are you wanting these days? Thank you @realpaolathomas.
The winter I lived in Vienna I got sick repeatedly, and my professors all told me to drink more mulled wine. I’ve already been sick once this winter and I don’t normally drink much but perhaps I need to change that. Starting with raspberry-black currant schnapps at the Polish bar, which tastes slightly of cough syrup (really good cough syrup). Please send favorite winter cold remedies. I’ll let you know if it goes.
Winter sunsets: consolation prize for the changing of the seasons (and sunset at 4:30pm). I love those ink smudge clouds.
Golden hour starts around 3:30 these days. Get out and grab it while you can ✨
Back in October, I managed to plant a few favas, and then I went away. Look what happened while I was gone. Next spring is already on the way #orchardhousegarden
This, my friends, is a public service announcement. You know those awful winter colds that leave your nose rubbed raw from constant tissue use? Well, that doesn’t happen when you use cloth handkerchiefs (as I discovered a few years ago when I ran out of tissues). And you don’t have to use up a tree, or incur transportation pollution in the shipping of said paper tissues. Think about the impact of that over a lifetime. And maybe you don’t want to go about your day with a used cloth handkerchief in your pocket, but if you’re sick enough to be at home, cloth is absolutely the way to go. Your nose will thank you. And if you have a mum who travels to India, you may get this sweet set, with carrying case, as a souvenir. Now I can be sick in style. Sometimes the old ways were better ways.
Can’t tell you how excited I was to discover I had all the ingredients to make @turshen ’s avocado-kimchi toast with cilantro and sesame (from her fist cookbook). The day suddenly got much better.
When you tossed a bunch of fruit in the freezer because you were too busy in the summer to make jam, but then you have to make jam because there’s no room in the freezer for the tamales. Feeling a little like an air traffic controller over here. Also eternally grateful to @leecdav for the gift of this jam pot, to @realpaolathomas for introducing me to my favorite jam (plum, cherry, rhubarb from the @bluechairfruit cookbook), and to @whitneycricketts who gave me the book that belonged to her mother ❤️ It’s a really good village; I owe you all jam. #orchardhousepreserving #orchardhousegarden
I should probably rake this path, but I don’t have the heart to displace the perfect carpet of leaves. #orchardhousegarden
‘‘Tis the season where I eat a persimmon a day because I love them so much and they’ll be gone far too soon. Also, Vitamin C delivery system.
Making tamales always sounds like a good idea, until it’s nearly midnight and there are 60 tamales left to steam and you’re not sure how they’re all going to fit in the fridge. These adorably tied specimen are not my handiwork. @the_gastrognome folds a cute tamal, and we both agree that huitlachoche is our favorite filling.
Every morning I wake up, expecting the cold temperatures to have wiped out the dahlias. Overnight they will be transformed into blackened stalks, green leaves melting to dark goo. But every morning thus far, I’ve been surprised to see color, to see flowers, to see life. It won’t last much longer, but I’m here for the end of season ride. This dahlia is called September Morn, fiercely blooming into November. Here’s to living on borrowed time. #orchardhousegarden #dahlias
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