just a smidgen

Super Natural Black Sesame Otsu

Heart Center

quiet cat-like tread
lightly in the darkened room
roll out mats and
smooth cloth to flatten

rest and peace
enter together
in the room’s dark
warmth embracing

let child’s pose stay
bend in supplication
clear your mind
clear your heart

focus… breathe
release all thoughts,
be here now

gently shift, move
and lift into
then downward dog

ever so slowly
lower to plank… hold… hold
then release and move…

back to cobra
downward dog
swiftly your feet move
to strong warrior

face trepidation
hold your own gaze
posture erect and strong,
unyielding, fixed

then turn
lift your hands
and your gaze
to the sun.. triangle

pure release
bring hands to

Heart Center
Sun Salutation

fill your mind
compose your heart
breathe and be still
be here now


Few activities give as great as pleasure as meditation through yoga… hot yoga (if you dare!) It can be an epiphany… if you allow it… where body, heart, and mind coexist together in synchronicity. Then “whoosh” cool, fresh air enters as you leave the room refreshed, engaged and ready to take on another day…

To keep this feeling of “reverence” alive, try to feed your body nourishment that suggests balance in a natural state. Become renewed for everything life showers your way…

Black Sesame Otsu

Super Natural Black Sesame Otsu
  • 1 teaspoon pine nuts
  • 1 teaspoon sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup / 2 oz / 60 g black sesame seeds
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons natural cane sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons shoyu, tamari, or soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons mirin
  • Scant 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons brown rice vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Fine-grain sea salt
  • 12 ounces / 340 g soba noodles
  • 12 ounces / 340 g extra-firm tofu
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch green onions, white and light green parts, thinly sliced
  1. Toast the pine nuts and sunflower seeds in a large skillet over medium heat until golden, shaking the pan regularly. Add the sesame seeds to the pan and toast for a minute or so. It’s hard to tell when they are toasted; look closely and use your nose. Remove from the heat as soon as you smell a hint of toasted sesame; if you let them go much beyond that, you’ll start smelling burned sesame – not good. Transfer to a mortar and pestle and crush the mixture; the texture should be like black sand. Alternatively, you can use a food processor. Stir in the sugar, shoyu, mirin, sesame oil, brown rice vinegar, and cayenne pepper. Taste and adjust if needed.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt generously, add the soba, and cook according to the package instructions until tender. Drain, reserving some of the noodle cooking water, and rinse under cold running water.
  3. While the noodles are cooking, drain the tofu, pat it dry, and cut into matchstick shapes. Season the tofu with a pinch of salt, toss with a small amount of oil, and cook in a large skillet over medium-high heat for a few minutes, tossing every couple of minutes, until the pieces are browned on all sides.
  4. Reserve a heaping tablespoon of the sesame paste, then thin the rest with 1/3 cup / 80 ml of the hot noodle water. In a large mixing bowl, combine the soba, half of the green onions, and the black sesame paste. Toss until well combined. Add the tofu and toss again gently. Serve topped with a tiny dollop of the reserved sesame paste and the remaining green onions.
  5. Adapted from 101 Cookbooks

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