The Year of the Crab

by ihidemychocolate


New Year’s Hopes

I love New Year’s Resolutions!  The hopeful promise that this year is the year I will achieve my goals!  New Year’s Resolutions play right to my ocd strengths as a disciplined rule-follower determined to succeed.  I will fill-in-the-blank every day!  While virtuously and successfully achieving all my goals, I will simultaneously stop all my bad habits, cold turkey, January 1!  I will be a perfect person!  (How annoying would that be?)

We all know how this turns out.

This year, instead of resolving, willfully, to stop picking at my skin in anxious rumination; instead of resolving, determinedly, to take 3 yoga classes every week (or more!); instead of resolving, impetuously, to throw away all the clutter in my house – I will refine and build on several goals, hopes, wishes and dreams I started last year that are bringing me more peace, joy, and love in my life.  In 2013, I wish to:

  • Speak my truth.  I know what I think, I just don’t say it in my effort to be liked, or to be right, or to avoid conflict.  It takes a lot of listening to my gut, to my intuition, but my truth is there.  Say it out loud.  Say what I need to say.
  • Listen.  Listen to the people I love.  Let them be themselves, not who I want them to be.  Let them speak their truth.  Encourage them to find their joy.
  • Make eye contact.  It is impossible to hide when you look the other person in the eye.
  • Continue to teach yoga.  Being a teacher brings me joy; connects me to others; encourages me to dig deeper – (and makes me a better student).
  • Continue to practice yoga.  Being a student brings me joy; connects me to others; encourages me to dig deeper – (and makes me a better teacher).
  • Begin to bring meditation into my life, making space for what is meaningful.  Allowing for time to sit still seems symbolic of letting go of the schedule, of the busy-ness.
  • Continue to write.  For now, my writing is where I speak my truth.
  • Be a grown-up.  Do all the financial things that need doing:  will, life insurance, college savings, retirement savings, mortgage.
  • Devote more time to the causes I believe in and have worked hard to develop personal connections with:
    • Gibney Dance, a modern dance company that brings movement training to victims of domestic violence – allowing these women to speak their truth.
    • Give Back Yoga, a nonprofit that brings yoga to PTSD trauma sufferers.
  • Nurture my deepening friendships.  They are more rewarding than my busy busy busy pursuit of my goals.
  • Do and share things with my family.  Let everyone take turns choosing an activity.  Time seems heartbreakingly fleeting.  Get out of myself and reach out to them.
  • Let go of the schedule, the chores, the clutter.  Let in the possibility of more fun.
  • Laugh more.

Food-wise, sigh, too many rules here.  I wish to enjoy my food more and not worry so much about my weight.  I will honor my commitment to my New Year’s Goals with Crab Pasta.  I make this dish frequently, because it is easy, delicious (and a bit indulgent).  Sitting down to crab pasta with my family once a month can be a reminder that my goal for 2013 is to live my life with meaning, true to myself, with love and compassion for the people in my life.  The symbolism of the crab resonates.  Hiding under its shell, ready to shed its shell, is a rich soul.


Crab Pasta

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped fine
  • 3 Tablespoons jalapeno slices (Mt. Olive brand is not too spicy and adds nice tang)
  • 3 Tablespoons pine nuts
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over to remove any shards of shell
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1 pound pasta (Garofalo brand, Calamarata shape – is my favorite for when I am indulging in “regular” pasta instead of healthier whole wheat pasta)
  • 2 Tablespoons parsley, chopped fine, to sprinkle on top when serving
  • Bring water to boil and prepare pasta according to package directions, careful not to overcook.
  • While pasta is boiling, prepare the crab.
  • Heat olive oil.  Saute gently on medium-low heat the garlic, jalapeno, pine nuts, and crushed red pepper until garlic and pine nuts are golden, about 5 minutes.  Add wine and bring to a boil.  Add crab.  Heat together another 5 minutes.  When pasta is done, add to crab and stir together.  Add some of the pasta cooking water (up to ½ cup) if the mixture seems dry.
  • Sprinkle parsley on top to serve.

Serves 4.  (Skeptical children can have butter pasta without the crab, leaving more crab for the grown-ups.)