Wednesday, April 30, 2008

bon voyage...

...indeed, it was.


Lazy, lazy, lazy...

proper preparation

Our last supper (pre-vacay, that is)

Lots of preparation went into getting into the right mindset to go on vacation. Our pre-Caribbean psych-up dinner went quite well. We had:


Black Bean, Heart of Palm, and Corn Salad
(Similar to eyeheartorange's delicious sounding salad
mentioned in comment here)

bev-er-age of choice... Don't be shocked!

Seltzer is sexy...
Seltzer with lime for pre-vacation detoxification.

And then, we waited one. more. painfully long. day.
And THEN... something wonderful happened: vacation. And it was heavenly


Sunday, April 20, 2008

momentous occasion

We ate dinner with the windows open on Friday night.

To celebrate this momentous occasion, one that I have been anticipating for a long time now, P and I decided to cook up something extremely simple, and very delicious: mussels.

No need to use a lemon, they are just pretty...
[Note: the next day I turned this lemon into delicious fresh-squeezed lemonade, spiked it with gin and added a few drops of rosewater. Refreshing and delicious...]

Probably the main reason mussels are so delicious is because they are cooked in gobs of butter (in the version that Anthony Bourdain describes, anyway). I'm sure you could be more health-conscious, but that wasn't really the goal.

So basically, chopped up a bunch of shallots (one of my VERY favorite ingredients in almost anything), added to melted butter, cooked two minutes, poured in a cup of wine, raised the heat, dropped in the scrubbed and de-bearded mussels, steamed them open, threw in more butter, plus parsley, et voila.


Usually I don't believe in parsley and generally think it is overrated, but would definitely include it when making mussels.

I admit it, parsley can be useful and delicious

With the windows still open, P and I sat down to our first open-window dinner of the season. We ate about a loaf of bread to soak up all the juices and sipped a muscat-viognier.

Lovely with the windows open...

Tonight we're going to try to get ourselves in the Caribbean mindset in preparation for our Vacation, and have tentative plans to have Caribbean influenced cocktails and dinner tonight. Would appreciate any ideas, as I'm at a loss for an entree, and have too many ideas of how to incorporate rum into just about everything. At least we have high-quality entertainment lined up.


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Vacation, all I ever wanted....

Oh, how the words of the Go Gos are ringing true to me right now.

Well, the chorus anyway:
All I ever wanted
Had to get away

Not so much the alone/pining away part:
Can't seem to get my mind off of you
Back here at home there's nothin' to do
Now that I'm away
I wish I'd stayed
Tomorrow's a day of mine that you won't be in

According to my blog I haven't had a lovely thought in a week -- Gads! So, here's one. Exhibit A, my calendar:

Calendar, full of stuff, live by it, can't function without it...

I would like to draw your attention to Exhibit B:

Next week

Yes, that is right. A Long Weekend (God love the Commonwealth), followed by VACATION.


Tuesday, April 8, 2008

deep blue something

On Sunday, I went to the aquarium to see my power animal: the penguin. I love these guys, I do. Not so much in a Happy Feet sort of way, but I wouldn't mind coming home from work and having a little penguin friend to hang out with. And yes, I realize how off-balance that sounds.

Imagine my chagrin when I discovered that the little guys (all 72 of them) were not in their usual home because their habitat is being renovated. Instead, you can go outside in the freezing cold and peer through some child-height windows to see them in their temporary digs, which consist mostly of slightly-larger-than-normal bathtubs. Poor guys!

I had to find a new favorite animal for the day. Strangely enough, some jellyfish fit the bill.

Exotic jelly...

I have many childhood memories of jelly fish from my days at the beach in Delaware. I know memory does not serve me correctly in my estimate that some of them were 14 in across. One day, my dad caught one in our big plastic plaster bucket that I used to play with and dumped it under the lifeguard's chair. Inside it you could see an entire crab. The next day there were only ants under the chair.

Deep blue something....

Pretty, but only behind glass. Hope the penguins will be back soon.


Thursday, April 3, 2008

job perks

My pal, Bill...
[Edited to make me look more important,
er protect the identity of the other person in the pic.]

My job has perks. I recently enjoyed my first iced coffee of the season down in DC. That was followed by an evening with my pal, Bill. After he spoke, I hung out and consumed the Ambassador's fancy Belgian beer and chocolate.

Might I add the Embassy called ahead of time to apologize because they would only be offering 3 kinds of Belgian beer instead of the usual seven.

Not too shabby...