Thursday, October 1, 2015



Luna, pretend, pretend the princess is on her way to the ball but she got lost.

Ok, but Soleil first pretend she is in her room practicing for the gymnastics competition and forgets she has to go to the ball.

But Luna pretend when she remembers she gets lost. Ok?

Set the pumpkin and orange on the cutting board.  Slice the tops and ends off each.  For stability, for support.  Use a sharp knife and cut downwards. Revealing the flesh. Be bold, be precise. Peel away the skin,the membrane, the rind. Let the curves of the fruit guide your way.

Mama, pumpkin is really a fruit because it has seeds. But we can pretend it's a vegetable if you want.  Should we pretend, mama?


Pretend your last Mehregan wish echoed up through the hills and beyond the valleys. 

Pretend she took heed of your murmurs, your whispers, and your cries. And the sky burst at the seams with a thundering bang and a rollicking roll.    

Like the heart of young lovers on a hillside under California stars.

Every strike of lightening peeling away the skin, the membrane, the rind.  Revealing the flesh.  The curtain pulling back and revealing her.  

The naked sky.  Drip, drip, dripping with rain. 

Cut the pumpkin in half and reach in for the seeds  The stringy pulp refusing to let go.  Pretend you enjoy the mess of it all.  Hold a fistful of pumpkin seeds in one hand.  You should make use of it all.  Don't waste anything.  Use everything.   

Let go.  

Watch them drop into the compost bin.  Think about how you could have rinsed them, dried them and roasted them.  But not today.  Maybe another day.  There will always be another day. 

Pretend a cool Autumn's breeze invites herself in.  And stays for a good long while. A much welcome, unexpected guest.

She runs her fingers through your hair and whispers sweet nothings in your ear.

Release the orange segments into a bowl.  Cool and slithery, slippery.  Bathing in orange blossom water.  Juices and all slipping freely though your fingers.  

Wash your hands and peer out your sink window.  Pretend the leaves have turned.  Rust, amber, strawberry blonde.  

Slice the pumpkin and dress it up for Mehregan.  The Autumn Festival.

Pretend you relish the warmth exuding from your oven as the scent of cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, ginger and cumin waltz around your kitchen.  An Autumn Waltz.  

A Mehregan overture. 

A prelude to a celebration of friendship, light, love, and compassion.

Spread the cool, thick yogurt over the roasted pumpkin, add the orange slices, juices and all.  Sprinkle all over with pumpkin seeds and sweet medjool dates.  Rust, amber, strawberry blonde.

A sweet pumpkin borani.  For comfort.  For Mehregan.  

For when you need to pretend it's Autumn under California skies.   

I'm thrilled to be once again joining the following Persian food bloggers for a collaborative Mehregan post.  Enjoy!