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Posts tagged ‘cranberry salsa recipe’

You Can’t Just Sit In A Woodshed

desk 1

“I had a close look at my desk just now and realized it wasn’t designed for quality writing.”
~Franz Kafka’s diary, Christmas Eve, 1910

I have become obsessed with how writers write.

Jonathan Franzen wrote The Corrections while wearing earplugs in a dark room with soundproof windows in Harlem.

Truman Capote wrote lying down in bed, with a cigarette and drink at his side.  (“I’ve got to be puffing and sipping.  As the afternoon wears on, I shift from coffee to mint tea to sherry to martinis.”)

Ray Bradbury wrote Fahrenheit 451 on a typewriter in the basement of the library at UCLA.  It cost 10 cents to rent the typewriter for half an hour, so he brought a bag of dimes.  Nine days and $9.80 later, he was done.

John Cheever wrote in the basement of his apartment building at a card table.  He wore a suit and tie in the elevator, but the basement was stifling so once he got down there he’d strip down to his underwear.

Maya Angelou checks into a hotel for the day with a bottle of sherry, a dictionary, a thesaurus, yellow pads, an ashtray and a Bible, and she writes on the bed until she has 12 pages.

Dave Eggers writes in a woodshed in his back yard.  He covers the window with a sheet so the sun doesn’t blind him.  (“So I’m looking at a gray sheet, which is nailed to the wall in two places and sags in the middle like a big, gray smile.  And the sheet is filthy.  And the shed is filthy.  If I left this place unoccupied for a week, it would become home to woodland animals.  They probably would clean it up first.”)

cranberriesI have nothing to add to this list, obviously, except to tell you that making three batches of cranberry salsa is a good way to not write anything.cranberry salsaBut you have to eat, right?  You can’t just sit in a woodshed in your underwear all day long, banging on a rickety typewriter and knocking back martinis.  I mean, check yourself before you wreck yourself.

So guys–if you know a writer, or anyone who may be in a woodshed drinking in their underwear for some other reason, you should probably check on them.  Bring them some chips and salsa.  This salsa can be tart or sweet depending on how much maple syrup and pineapple you want to use.  It tastes amazing with chips, chicken quesadillas, and writer’s block.  Enjoy!

Cranberry Salsa {Download & Print Recipe}
by some on-line source that I can’t find but was found at one point by a girl named Julianna who is friends with my friend Melissa.  Adapted by me and told in my own words.

This salsa can be tart or sweet or spicy depending on how much maple syrup and pineapple and lime you want to use.  A half cup maple syrup and a little pineapple will give you a salsa on the tarter side, where the cranberry really comes through, whereas 2/3 c. maple syrup and a whole can of pineapple will give you a pretty sweet salsa (think mango salsa).  If you make your salsa too sweet, just add lime until you get the balance you want.  I found that 2 jalapenos wasn’t hot at all. 


1 12-oz. bag of fresh cranberries, rinsed and mushy berries discarded

1/2 to 2/3 c.  (depending on whether you like your salsa sweet) pure maple syrup

2-3 jalapenos, seeded and finely chopped (I didn’t think 2 was hot at all)

1/2 c. minced onion

1/2 c. chopped cilantro (I used even more because I love cilantro)

2 ripe but firm pears or two small apples, finely chopped

1/2 c.  or more (depending on whether you like your salsa sweet) crushed pineapple (drained) or finely diced pineapple chunks

Juice of 2 or 3 limes (to taste)


Whiz the cranberries in a food processor (or chop very finely by hand).  Transfer them into a medium-sized mixing bowl and toss them with the maple syrup while you prepare the other ingredients.  Add the other ingredients.  Toss together.  Taste the salsa and adjust the ingredients as you like.   Serve!

Note: You may find that the salsa gets sweeter overnight.  If so, you can add more lime juice or jalapeno before you serve it again.


thunder 11.15There’s been, um, a slight dip in productivity in all quarters over here.