Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Second Helping

This is going to be another one of those full of lots of little bits kind of posts. Be warned.

Remember when I mentioned that a real life chef had offered to come cook with me? Well, it happened. She was really kind in asking me what I have trouble with so that we could work on that. I've never been able to make falafel that doesn't fall apart. It doesn't matter if I follow a recipe to the T, it just never works for me. Michelle came up with a whole Greek menu for us which was really fun and awesome of her to take the time to do. She taught me how to hold a knife correctly (which apparently I do not do), and she used lots of science-y words and explained things to me and we ended up making falafel that didn't fall apart. It was really fun and Michelle was wonderful to have over. We didn't even have one bit of awkward pausing.

One thing I think I learned about myself though is that I like the discovery aspect of cooking. Lana was asking me how things went and when I was telling her I sort of like not knowing how to do something she said "Right, you like figuring it out on your own, because that's fun." And she's right. I think I like making mistakes and learning from them and then finally having something be a success. It makes it that much more exciting when you're able to do it right. I think that's why even though I have tons of cookbooks I don't really read them. I like to look at the photos for inspiration or use them as reference but I don't really use them for their intended use. I am super stoked I know how to make falafel now though. And this spinach, currant, pine nut dish that was awesome.

I wanted to take pictures but I was also trying to not be super obviously excited and lame. I am a fan of this one of our tzatziki though. Which was amazing by the way.

Guess what came in the mail this week...both the Urban and Anthro catalogs! Free People should be here soon too. And since the 40% accurate groundhog decided it will be Spring in two weeks that means I need to get working on my Spring wish list.

This is already on it.

Lana and her friend Curtis, who is probably also my friend now since I invited him to my birthday six months from now, came over on Tuesday to make some food. We were going to make more pasta but since I broke my mixer that was a no go. We ended up using some store bought pasta to make a dish with carmelized onions, roasted potatoes, wilted spinach, and a rosemary cream sauce. We also had Lana's famous brussel sprouts on the side. Although I did have to restrain her from burning them since I'm pretty sure had I not stepped in she'd have been perfectly happy to serve them black.

At this point we hadn't added the spinach yet. Not because we forgot though...

I've been looking for a house to rent either on the Oregon coast or in the Puget Sound area for my birthday. I really want to just have a bunch of people stay there and be cozy and watch movies and play games and cook food. Everyone I've talked to about it is on board so I've searched on tons of sites for the perfect house. Mostly I've found a bunch of crappy houses someone thinks are worth $600 a night with a mandatory one month rental and I'm pretty sure if I had to live in one of these floral dust ruffle, jars full of sea shells, futon filled nightmares for a month I would kill myself. But, this search has been making me more thankful to live in the gorgeous Northwest. Yesterday I was driving and in the middle of everything, on a freeway overpass, this was my view.

I realize there is a not so gorgeous fence in the way there but there's also a glowing mountain if you didn't notice. I need to remember not to take this place for granted.

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