Monthly Archives: September 2011

the best thing i ate all week

Yotam Ottolenghi’s new cookbook, Plenty, fulfills so many of my hopes and dreams for greater vegetable consumption, pretty photography, and what the shiznip is for dinner?

This week, we were scouting out recipes to use up the massive quantity of heirloom tomatoes that we’d gotten in our last CSA box and this recipe:
A) used up 4 tomatoes!
B) was awesome

Ottolenghi tomato, bread and quinoa salad

1 baguette, left to stale-up a bit.  Decrust it, cut into cubes, toss with a bit of olive oil and bake at 350 for about 15 to 20 minutes until crispy

1/4 cup of quinoa rinsed, then boiled for 9 minutes.  Strain and rinse with cool water and let to drain and dry

4 gorgeous tomatoes, chopped and diced

2 balls of mozzarella cut into cubes

2 cups of cucumbers chopped

1/2 of one small red onion sliced in thin slivers

4 TBSP of chopped cilantro

2 TBSP of chopped parsley

2 garlic cloves crushed

1 TBSP of lemon juice

3/4 TBSP of red wine vinegar

1/3 cup of olive oil

salt & pepper

Mix it all up.

Not so good for leftovers once the toasty crouton bits get soggy, so you will have to eat it all now, which is what you were really hoping for anyway.

 

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Just like I imagined, but better

It was my birthday on Saturday.

Some people came to the gathering I organized. And some of those people gave me presents.

One of those people is my friend Ali*.

She gave me a little brown box that had a note reading “Hopefully this is just like you imagined…”

Intriguing.

Inside was a little golden box.

Did I imagine a little golden box? “I don’t get it.”

Ali is looking like she is about to burst with the glee from a million baby bunnies bippity-hopping around in her head. “You have to open it!”

Alright.

Inside is a big round locket with a peacock pattern on the front.

Now, I do like lockets. And this locket is pretty crazy, in a cool way. But I am almost certain that I have never articulated a vision of a big brassy locket with a peacock feather pattern on it. Like 97% certain.

I look at Ali.

“Maggie! Open it!”

So I open it. And inside, there is a picture of Ali and her husband, Cooper. But not just any picture. It’s one of their Christmas photo pictures. The one in which they’ve dressed up as Wisconsonian nerds from the 70’s.

It is a photo that I love and a photo that I did declare I’d love to have in a locket. Although I only remember saying that with 7% certainty. But it sounds like something I would say, and now that I have a locket with this photo in it, I am certain that I really would like to have this photo in a locket.

And I was absolutely gobsmacked with astonishment. This little delightful treasure! This nugget of ridiculous creativity and bizarro weird humor! It is mine!

*This is to be pronounced like Alley Cat and not like Muhammad Ali.

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a year later

last year on my birthday, I made some goals about what I was going to accomplish in the coming year.

1.  No credit card debt
2.  Lose “some” weight
3.  Leave my gray hairs alone and refrain from pulling them out of my head.

And so, the gray hairs – not a single one yanked.  In fact, I’ll say that there are more of those than there were a year ago, so… success!

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Thirty four

Yesterday, I turned thirty-four. And it was a Saturday. The convergence of the two led to feelings of a planned gathering.

So I planned, and they gathered… at Ocean Beach for a beach bonfire birthday.  It was gloomy and it was blowy.  It was misting and sand was swirling.  But there was fire and everyone was appropriately bundled and despite being damp and very dirty, it was grand.

Some people left early and some people showed up quite late, so there was a nicely rotating mix of folk.  There were hot dogs and s’mores and carafes of spiced wine.

And at the end, after all of our wood was burned away and I was hemming and hawing as to whether we should go get more or just be done with, a guy showed up with a tree’s worth of more wood and asked if we were about to done with our pit.  He was on his own, just wanting to build a fire, so he joined our group and created a monstrous blaze which was really almost magical in the dark.

If I hadn’t managed to turn the tide from pleasantly tipsy to distressingly, spinningly drunk right there at the very end, it actually would have been just about perfect.  So I kind of ruined my Sunday a little bit, but the birthday itself was just really nice.

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all the people

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hot dog

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me

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the david

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sunset on the pacific

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bi and stephanie

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kite flying

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ali and sloane

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emiliana

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alex

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night time fire

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