Tuesday, October 23, 2007

More Than a Grain of Salt

Well, its been a while. Unfortunately I don't have that much to write about. I've spent the last month traveling almost non-stop. And then coming home on the weekends and collapsing. On the plus side, I have worked through about 1.5 years of backlog cooking magazines and pulled out the recipes I want to keep. Although I still haven't filed, categorized, or cross-referenced them as I would like. Where is my detail-oriented mother when I need her?

Of note, I had one of my good friends and on of T's co-workers over for dinner. The soup was terrible. Its actually a very lovely soup.....when it isn't overwhelmed with salt. Same issue with the pork, too much salt. I was really off my game. The saving grace of the meal was my sticky toffee pudding that my friend said was "so good I wanted to dive into it and eat my way out."

So while it wasn't a complete disaster, it wasn't much fun for me. The food wasn't great, and the company was strange. Not that either of them were actually strange, just a strange combination. I guess I'm not ready to be THE COMMANDER'S WIFE. It made me uncomfortable to realize, half way through the dinner, that everything I said was going to be repeated across the entire office. Sigh.

Well, since that experiment (both food and company) was a flop, in a "get back on the horse after you've been thrown off" sort of way I'm going to have T's deputy (not the one who is a flake, the one who isn't) and his wife for dinner. T proposed that I not do an overly complex meal.....which of course made me pout. In a rare moment of compromise, we collectively came up with the following menu:

Mini tarts of atichoke hearts and marscapone
Garden Salad with Raspberry Vinagrette
Turkey Breast Tournados (this is the new dish I'm trying) - Stuffed with Pancetta
Grilled Antipasta Vegetables
Fontina Cheese Sauce (for the Turkey, to approximate chicken cordon blu, and the Veggies)
Apple Tart Tartin

So only 1 new dish, but I've never done a turkey break before, and it should look pretty if I can do it right. Plus T helped me put the menu together, so I think it will be good. And probably something they will like, as opposed to suffering through one of my creations. Speaking of which, I need to find someone like Greg to suffer through my creations. I won't ever get any better by making traditional food. I think its time for another cooking class.

Or perhaps some sleep...... I'm exhausted. I'm off to go dream of the best grilled cheese sandwich in the world (from Sesame).

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Treats and Treatments

Living in Charleston is terrible for my face. I'm sure when I'm 50 and don't have any wrinkles from all the moisture, I won't feel this way. But being in my 20's (I'll admit, late 20's), I feel that I've had my share of acne and its time for it to go. I'm not exactly a high-maintenance girl, but due to mounting frustration I gave in to my vanity and went to get a facial. I have had one only one other time, and it was administered on a cruise ship, where I kept slipping off the table, the woman kept slipping while doing my extractions and poking me in the eye, and it made me look hideous. So I was pleasantly surprised with this one. While the picking at my acne still hurt, there was nice smelling things, steam, soothing music, and no snotty british woman making fun of my sensitive skin while poking me in the eye as I try not to get sea sick.

I know what you are thinking "what is she talking about a facial for in a food and travel blog?" Well, between the massage (akin to kneading), the chocolate and vanilla oil, the steam, and having my hands wrapped in plastic and stuffed into heated gloves......I felt like a pastry, in the nicest sort of way. I left feeling perfectly yummy and ready to ooze into an easy chair.

In order to prolong the wonderful soft feeling, I decided that champagne and cheese was the best medicine. I'm finding more and more that while I love to feel like the pastry, cheese is more of a treat than almost any sweets. Which is, I suppose, why I have earned the nickname of Mousy.

And now, the Mousy is off to nibble on some cheese, make a nest in the couch, and revel in the feeling of being a perfectly contructed chocolate pastry.