Thabo Lama (silent h folks) might like cherries just as much as I do. I can't get anything done in the kitchen with this little guy around. He is into everything and he wants to eat anything other than his own kitten food. He grabs food right out of Tina's mouth, popcorn, chips, cake . . . He clamors for anything humans eat and turns his back on his own food. One day I roasted a turkey. Thabo sat at the foot of the oven for three hours while the turkey was in the oven and then guarded the turkey cooling in a window sill like it were his job.
All of this might seem quite amusing. I will admit it is a part of his personality that makes me laugh, watching him scamper across the counter every time I open the door of the fridge getting as close to the food source as possible. However his crazy eating habits went sour about a month ago when he started eating fabric including the crotch out three pairs of unders, a few pairs of socks, one of my favorite napkins and put bilateral holes in the arms of my P.J.'s. While it solved the "clothing on the floor around here" problem it was not amusing. Additionally he lost some weight while we were in Europe. We just can't seem to keep him past the 4 pound mark.
Back to the cherries. My friend Shauna posted a recipe for Cherry-Basil Soda a few days ago. Being completely obsessed with Cherries I made it immediately. Never mind it was the crack of dawn and I just happened to have a few pounds of fresh cherries in the fridge. I could hardly wait for the syrup to steep. When I passed the syrup through a fine-mesh strainer some of it landed on the counter. The challenge was on, who was going to get more licked up me, or Thabo. Once I got the syrup into a jar, Thabo stalked the jar and made endless attempts to get it open. It was funny and sad all at the same time.
The Cherry-Basil soda, pure bliss! Nothing could top this summer mocktail. The combination of cherry and basil is simply genius. Conceptually the recipe is a base for an endless source of mocktails. You can find the recipe at Sauna's blog: http://glutenfreegirl.com/cherry-basil-soda/ .
Back to little Thabo Lama. Thank goodness he is sweet as the day is long and I simply adore him. His food issues are challenging indeed. Just when we think we have made some progress we find ourselves taking a few steps back. Many have suggested just letting him eat what he wants. At one point even our vet considered this option. Cats need an essential amino acid called Taurine which can only be consumed in appropriate amounts in cat food or a supplement. Without enough Taurine Thabo would be prone to a host of serious medical conditions. So we considered a supplement which would mean cooking for him every darn day. However when our vet went to program his nutritional needs into the program provided by the supplier of the supplement they refused him. He was too small and vulnerable to meet the criteria for getting the supplement. Many have suggested we just keep him out of the kitchen, remove the triggers so to speak. We do put him away when we eat but I can't keep him contained all day. He lives in the kitchen, with me and that is that. I am not putting him away all day so I can cook without his trouble making. I like him too much.
Cheers to a challenging cat with some Cherry-Basil Soda!