Sunday, September 30, 2018

Your Love Feels like Trumpets

The Atlantic Antic 2018 
In recent years it was hard to know if even I would make it to the street festival let alone both of us going together.  For many years we never missed it, a real tradition then one time we ditched it entirely.  Last year I took a vacation day just to go with a gal from work but became ill and ditched her.  P seems to have grown tired of it altogether.  I still enjoy it, if only for nostalgic feels. This time I worked but got off in just enough time to rush home, drop my bike, walk over and catch a few bands, thought to maybe sample some food as well.  By the site of him still being in his Sunday morning apparel at 4pm, I could tell P was going nowhere.  It would be a solo venture as Tiger Woods was playing a big tournament.
 The Get It! band - fun white boy funk with horns at Hank's Saloon.
 I can't be sure but I told myself this was Richard Buckner playing bocce ball.  

It felt what it was, a party that was about to end, some vendors already packing up, the crowd dispersing a bit.
But I came and I saw.  I wanted to bring a taste of the festival back and found who I think was the daughter of the lady who ran our old favorite jerk spot on Atlantic.  She had a booth set up with a nice grill master and helpers.  As I've done before I ruined it by getting all goofy excited and turned off the laid back Islander. I could see it in her eyes.  She was not interested to know how we loved her mom's food or that our now deceased cat Willie used to sneak her hot chicken from our plates it was so delicious that he risked his life for it.  And one time he made off with an entire leg and P stayed mad at him for it.  That when she closed we were so bummed out.  
And then I remembered that her mother was very much the same.  Disinterested. Her food was incredible but there was no happiness living in her place.  Perhaps she missed her home.  Maybe she had been in a failed marriage or had health issues.  Who could know how these two things could exist and live together; amazing delicious food in a sad lonely uninviting restaurant. We both agreed the vibe was what took they place down.

When I got home P was standing for the final moments of the last round and would you believe it, Tiger won!  I'll repeat, Tiger won!  It was as if the heaven's opened and the angels sounded trumpets.  A true champion who deserves it.  We celebrated by eating the delicious food made by disheartened women served up in Styrofoam containers.  

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Another Sunny Afternoon


My sister and I noticed that purple morning glory's, one of the flowers that remind us of mom kept popping up everywhere this summer.  She grew them along a white wooden trellis and loved them. I was fascinated as a young girl that they opened every day when I woke up and closed at night and tried to catch them doing so.  Also since I knew they had nectar, I would suck it out and you could taste a faint hint of sweet that was divine.  Sometimes I'd blow the closed flowers like a balloon in my mouth and make them pop.  On the ride to work I passed a few of these fences lined with them. 

Thursday, September 27, 2018

I Will Be Here When You Are Ready to Roll With the Changes

Way back in the days of my mom and dad's restaurant there were times when my parents would introduce new dishes.  One of my personal favorites other than their breakfasts, which incidentally turned their ship around business wise. That was their successful breakthrough idea right before they gave up entirely.  Well another good one for me anyway was their homemade soups.  Maybe they had  three but I remember a vegetable one that my dad would serve up for himself and of course after his major black pepper dousing, he would put a few large spoonfuls of our freshly made hot sauce and let me tell you something.  THAT soup became so alive and extra!  And now its hard for me not to do that to all my soups, especially chicken with cabbage and tomatoes, potatoes. 
Midwestern Mexican might some day have it's own genre.  If so, this soup might be right up there with Tamale pie casserole. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Won't You Tell Me What You're Thinking Of

I'm almost embarrassed to say how much I concern myself with the evils of the internet and just how much and fast it's changing society.  This documentary fed some of my worries on sharing so much.  But more than that I can't help but notice the shift in my own house.  Even in just myself.
I remember in San Francisco I had a friend that used to talk to strangers and play video games all night on her computer.  I thought, 'Wow, why would anyone ever want to do that?'.  That was very new and unusual.  Little did I know how it would become the norm.   I traveled on transit to visit this couple in person a couple of nights a week. I looked forward to sitting on their sofa, having real and long conversations. We would drink some tea and make a night of it.  That was living my life back then.  Now several years later but only 3 short years into social media I am not comfortable with interacting through the internet completely but also reluctant to be off of it entirely.  All the pictures and videos of nieces and nephews, old friends is way too awesome to leave behind.  I don't have the schedule or wherewithal to do in-person visits except on special occasions so it's super convenient if nothing else. But it does come at a price, virtual reality is not free. There is an under belly.  Or I should say it's just as complex as maintaining relationships privately. Perhaps more so because it's only in your mind that activity is taking place through computer visuals.  So strange.  It seems to grow a life of it's own.  I now have bursts of energy to join Twitter because I'm sort of forming thoughts in short hilarious quips lately.  It seems an appropriate vehicle to get them out of my system.  But other days I feel the strong pull to close any and all accounts.  Get back to solely living in the present world that you can touch and feel.
I baked shells in the oven until crisp and then topped with black beans with cumin, guacamole, onions, lettuce and cheese.  So much better than expected.  How many times do I have to be reminded that beans are an excellent meat replacement?  So filling and they stick to your stomach in a good way.
I guess in it's own unique way Facebook and Instagram is an effective way to continue our youthful banter and communicate thoughts with the same vigor that we had while visiting our friends over tea or lets be honest beer and drugs so many years ago.  The way you felt so alive in a roomful of your friends talking and laughing before it all got so complicated and serious.  Before everyone got so old.  Before separation happened on the grand scale.  Real life is still so much better and my closest family and friends are actually not on any media, so this cheese still stands alone for the most part.  But all in all, today at least just like these beans, I believe it's still a healthy supplement to enrich one's days.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Mix and a Mingle

 Mexican Shakshuka 
If you're a reader of recipes and follow new trends like fashion you have seen pics of Shakshuka.  Eggs poached in a well seasoned tomato sauce from India.  I've done a mash up here of chilaquiles, eggs ranchero and Shakshuka.   Sauce drenched crispy chips on the bottom with a little cheese, then a homemade hot sauce bolder than a ranchera with eggs poached on top.  I paired it with chopped bacon and whole pinto beans cooked with some jalapeno and garlic, a pinch of cumin.  This dish is seriously begging for warmed flour tortillas.  Eat 'em if you got 'em.
You can do this in the oven or because it was too warm on this day, I did stovetop.  Gentle, low and slow so that the eggs are delicate pillows. 

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Someone to Love, Someone like you!

My sister's taco plate from a take-out joint in Pueblo, Colorado.

It only takes that spark of her sharing her delicious lunch for me to begin this insatiable craving for the same.  I had to have tacos.  There would be no rest until they were in my belly. This is what its like to have a sister that you bonded with gastronomically early in life.  We text about lunch or dinner and those seeds become reality if you wanna do right by your stomach and soul. Somehow the food experience becomes that much richer.
Being the younger sibling, I knew I would have to fight to stay on board the independent mysteriousness that was my big sister.  She was not keen on having me tag along to her new adventures after about 9 years old and even before that perhaps she was not as enamored of a pesky awkward runt. I think my excitement to be near was enough to scare her off.  Besides, she had her sights on the outside world, all the fun little gals around the neighborhood and beyond. Which is funny because in my mind I was like, I got it all here girl, can't ya see me?!  I had fun game ideas to last a life time, you just had to buy into the weirdness.  I always had my mind set on having her as a bestie from way early on. Like birth.  She would take years to realize my fabulousness but I might have finally roped her now later in life.  At least where sharing thoughts on food and men is concerned.  Maybe she's just desperate enough for a female friend.  I know I am. Either way I'll take the in whichever way I can get it.   
Shrimp pesto tacos with an avocado schmear.  When you teach yourself to cook, I think one advantage is that you are more likely to mash-up cuisines and styles because you can't recreate the classics as they should be made.  When you learn how to make dishes correctly, like my sister, then you are able to serve dishes perfectly and can enjoy them as they were supposed to be.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Try to Remember the Kind of September

This was one of those amazing days where I exercised in the morning, made two dinners and went to see a great afternoon movie.  As I lay on the couch today with a blanket over my knees I try to recall the mindset of getting so much done and realize good weather makes all the difference.  It's 27 degrees, feels like 16 as I'm writing this now.  I'm not looking forward to doing too much today except staying warm and horizontal.  

This was a Pesto Vinquini that is so easy with yogurt, ricotta, Parmesan and Pesto mixed to make the sauce. You can add fresh herbs and I made with broccoli but any green would do.

The Beef Veggoni, where the summer squash mocks the macaroni was not as visually appealing but super tasty and I would recommend taking the time to cut the vegetables just right so they mock the polpular tubular noodles.  This was ground beef in a quick spicy tomato sauce with mushroom, onions and garlic with the squash thrown in to the boiling sauce for only a few minutes to soften. Doesn't take long at all.  Top with Parmesan.

Lots of construction downtown Brooklyn.  It will be a brand new town at some point and from the looks of it, the people who will live here are not short on cash. 
The Blaze movie.  So good.  I had heard about this guy from P for years, not these huge stories but just of him, a guy that was around Texas that he knew of, that was also during the Townes era.  I have issue with the way Townes was portrayed, meaning his character but thought Charlie Sexton did an amazing job.  P disagreed and didn't see Townes in him at all.  I really hate that when you feel so strongly and your partner is on another plane entirely. I don't think that man who played Foley himself could have done a better job.  I liked all the characters and felt they put to life a story I held in my head for some time. 

We went to the park and ran the steps in the morning and someone displayed an outdoor art gallery on the public garden fence. 

The top of the park and steps.  That's P doing push ups.  I draw the line at that madness.