I love productive cooking projects. Actually, all cooking projects are productive in that they lead to a finished product, so, okay, I love cooking. But especially multi-step projects.
Step 1, get obsessed with a recipe you read in Bust, cut the recipe up for a collage by accident, wait for Isa Does It to fiiiiinnnnallly come out in book form
Step 2, forget about the recipe, but buy the book anyway because duh, it's Isa
Step 3, remember the recipe but have to wait until squash season
Step 4, a year later, soak beans before work
Step 5, run amok at the farmers market, haul kale and 6 lbs. of squash home (it was the smallest one I found!)
Step 6, put beans on, run to grocery store for the rest of the stuff you need, fret about the beans boiling over and yr apartment exploding in the 15 minutes you are out
Step 7, return home, run back and forth between bedroom (where the cookbook is) and kitchen (where the food is) checking on the recipe before you realize you should bring the cookbook into the kitchen
Step 8, finally make up yr mind to skip the party you were going to go to because SQUASH and also SOCIAL ANXIETY and it's too late anyway because you always do shit like this to psych yrself out
Step 9, text a friend to come over because you don't want to be entirely alone
Step 10, manically chop + roast squash, check on beans, wash, chop, and puree herbs
Step 11, remember a friend is coming over like SOON, put project on hold, shower, re-dress, clean kitchen, hide all evidence of ever eating food ever
Step 12, the next day, realize that a three-component recipe is NBD and does not have to be 15 steps if you calm down a little
Step 13, boil noodles, steam kale
Step 14, enjoy the fruits of yr labor
Step 15, wonder what the hell to do with the rest of a 6 lb. squash
Isa's original recipe doesn't include kale, but we could always use more greens. She also calls for black beans, but I needed adzukis for another recipe and a bean is a bean is a bean. Not sure why I was so fixated on buying a red kuri squash, but I'm glad I did. I could swear when I saw the recipe in Bust magazine originally, that's what was called for but in Isa Does It, she just says "pumpkin."
In any case, another great dish from an awesome cookbook that is constantly proving itself. Now I won't have to take photos of lunch all week, because this will be it.