Marjory Sweet | Muses of Now

Marjory Sweet Muses Hero

Marjory Sweet is a delightfully difficult person to sum up in a tidy bio (aren’t the best ones always that way?), with criss-crossing endeavors that merge around the nurturing, education, and shared enjoyment of simple foods, thoughtfully prepared.


Longtime Apiece Apart followers may recall our earlier story on Marjory, captured while she was working in farming outside Santa Fe, NM. In the years between, her life has taken a new course: coming home to her home state of Maine, stepping back from farming, and beginning a new project, Double Grazie, a small bakery partnership with a local farm that Marjory describes as “a larger experiment in how to approach baked goods from a farming perspective”; an exercise in the ways baked goods might connect us to the larger cycles of a season. Earlier this year she also released a second book, ____is a breakfast food, equal parts cookbook and conversational experiment on the appetite of morning.


In the spirit of transitions—in life, amid seasons, between place—we invited Marjory to share more on what it has looked like to find solid ground amid limbo; embrace the you of now; and to take care.

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Since we last spoke about homecomings, you've returned to Maine after living for years in New Mexico. What's palpably changed for you?


Well, the elevation has changed. Topographically, but at the risk of sounding too poetic, emotionally too. Returning to coastal Maine, the place where I was born and grew up (loaded with both sweet and painful memories) dropped me down to some kind of emotional sea level. In New Mexico, I think I felt more focused on my external identity in the world - what am I doing? In Maine, I feel more connected to my internal identity. Less what am I doing, more how do I feel? After a decade in the desert, it seems I've entered my watery phase in more ways than one.




What are you evolving into, or out of?


I wish I knew! I think I can only see my personal evolution in retrospect. At the current moment, I just feel like a jellyfish, with all of my sensory receptors spread throughout my entire blob of a body reacting instinctively to fear, pleasure, safety, and other environmental conditions—in and out of a hundred states of being at any given time. Ask me this question again in a year.

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How have you been taking care of yourself?


I think my move to Maine was in itself, an act of personal care, so this is a wide-ranging prompt for me... but for some specific examples:


1. Swimming in the ocean. In the winter, in the summer, in the sunshine, in the rain, alone, with others, with the dog, in the morning, late at night, spontaneously, planned. Quick dips, leisurely floats, long focused swims. I don't know a more steadfast cure for all moods and wounds in this world than the ocean. A recommended read (as featured in a past Apiece Apart profile on Bonnie Tsui).


2. The small but potent ceremony of meals is a form of care I have long relied on and I have been leaning on it more heavily than ever, with special attention to music, flowers, candles, and taking my time. We had to say grace at dinner growing up and I never felt connected to it, but I have recently reintroduced a grace of my own that I like to recite before eating. When I'm feeling unsettled by life, the entire ritual of dinner can bring me back to the present.


3. I recently found a perfume that I'm devoted to, which I think counts here.


So, to summarize: ocean, flames, scent.




Each season offers a natural cycle, a "moment of bounty" as you name it, to focus our intention. What's got your attention right now?


For me, early fall is the most melancholy time of year, sometimes excruciatingly so if you've been immersed in a garden all summer. Of course, the fall brassicas and first squash are coming in, which is exciting, but typically the summer stuff is still hanging on in late September/early October, so you have this rare intersection of seasons that I find really poignant and special.

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Marjory’s favorite salad for early autumn days, perfect for sharing with friends.


Radicchio salad with cooked spinach and walnut anchovy ‘sludge’


6 oz radicchio leaves, trimmed and cleaned, but kept whole

2 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

3 small anchovies packed in oil

1/4 c toasted walnuts

1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked from the stem


Using a mortar and pestle, pound the garlic, salt, anchovies, and dijon into a smooth paste.

Add the walnuts and olive oil, and pound again until you have a coarse, but cohesive mixture. The dressing should have a rubble-y texture, but be able to slide off a spoon.

Stir in the lemon juice. Taste for salt.

Using your hands, gently toss the radicchio leaves and a small handful of the parsley leaves with the dressing, making sure everything is well-coated.

Arrange the dressed leaves in a salad bowl and finish with more parsley.

Top with a poached egg or leftover cooked fish.

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