Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Zzyzx Road Kitchen: Closed for the Season

I am sorry to announce that the Zzyzy Road Kitchen and Garden will be closed for the Pacific Northwest spring/summer growing season.  Between a house move and emergency surgery last week, I've decided to not start a garden this summer, and wait for the autumn squash season.

What does that mean to you?

Not much.  Less gardening talk, more farmers' market chat and interviews with the locals.  New recipes. Green eggs and ham.  No, really.  The ham's not green - just the eggs.  I promise.

I'll have more information and more structure when we get unpacked at the other end.  We're planning a party for my birthday/Memorial Day.  That's the plan, at least.  Hope you locals can come and leave your mark in our tile station.

Did I mention that we're only moving four blocks away?


Friday, March 23, 2012

Moving On... Moving House, not the blog.

Well, we knew it would happen, but not two days before I started on the veggie garden!  After 4 1/2 years, our landlord is giving his engaged daughter the house as a wedding gift.  OUR house!  We've lived in it since we got married!

Upside: We get to start over fresh, and I'll be forced to pick through my stuff and have my first yard sale.

Downside: I have to pick through my crap.

Upside: Lou and I are looking for a much smaller house because Mom and my uncle are looking for their own place.  We have do timeshare Bev, I think.

So, in case someone knows of something that will come on the market mid-to-late May, we are looking for:
Location: South of downtown.  West Seattle, Burien, Tukwila, Renton (NOT The Highlands), Georgetown, White Center, etc.  Somewhere in a non-scary neightborhood.  Like where Sweetpea lives.
Bedrooms Required: 2+.  3 is better, but if there's a useable basement, that would work.  At least one that's large enough for two people to live without a burning bed.
Bathrooms required: 1+.  I'd like at least 1.5, but that's negotiable.
Basement: Absolutely.
Pets: Cat-friendly.  We have a neurotic-but-sweet 14-year-old Maine Coon (Sascha).
Outdoor Space: A must.  I have to have a vegetable garden, space for a small greenhouse, and entertaining space.

I doubt we'll have much activity here until May, since we're packing and not cooking or gardening.

Thanks, guys!


Monday, January 30, 2012

Yo-Ho-Ho and Yee-freakin'-F'g-Haw!

Someone of you know that I've been in Texas for the past month or so, helping my recently-widowed grandmother go through my grandfather's things.  And... we're hoping to get her to move up to Seattle.  She knows that she has to move, and that Rat City is where she needs to go, considering that both of her adult children, her granddaughter (me), and her great-granddaughter (Bev) are there.  Oh, yeah, and that weird pirate stalker guy who follows me around and insists on calling me "Mrs. Dr. Winant" is up there, too.  I'd give him the boot, but he keeps cleaning the kitchen after Hurricane Zanne all the time.

That being said, I have now switched my return flight for the second time (open-ended at this point).  My grandmother lives in a kick-ass retirement and assisted living complex, and I take part in everything that I can from the social calendar.  One really sweet man, Tracy, asked to be my Valentine's party date.  Since he knows I'm married, I think it would be safe, but I'd rather have my grandmother to escort.  She never leaves her flat.  Maybe tomorrow's hair appointment will get her sociable.  She's always been so fun.  I guess it's obvious who my favorite grandparent is. *S*

So, we've covered the V-Day party, agoraphobia, widow-dom, and Gran's next apartment.  Can I please just go home and hug my mommy?

I'm still working on recipes for the latest Zzyzx Road Kitchen Chronicles book: Around the World on Three Chords or Less (you'll get the title when you read the table of contents on Amazon).  If I were at home, it would be a two-day job, but without stable 'net access, it could take weeks.  After that, it's typsetting, editing, embedding photos, and creating a cover, index, glossary, Table of Contents, measurement conversions, once more to my infallible editor (Our Lady of the Red Felt Pen), and plenty of celebration when the first copy rolls of the press.  My brain hurts.

For those spice-obsessed fans out there, The Zzyzyx Road Kitchen Herb and Spice Conpendium will be released in late March.

Yes, I'm still in Houston - six-ish weeks before I see Mt. Rainier again.  I love being around my Gran and siblings, but I want to kiss and hug and squeeze my husband, , Mom, and Uncle Billy.  Hell, at this point, I'll hug our favorite beer server at The  Dog and Pony Ale House.  Especially her.

Keep reading, kids - I have written and posted new recipes, finally figured our how to use my DVR (not the TV-recorder, the voice recorder), and feel inspired to finally finish these three books.

Eat, drink, and hide the bar receipts from your spouse (changing the online banking passwords as soon as you stumble home helps),

Zanne Rose

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Sorry for the disappearing act, guys - I have an excuse note from my editor!

I have sooo let the blog go unattended - you should see the cobwebs.

I have been working under a "Christnas Rush to Print" deadline on three books.  Two by of the books (the cookbook and the spice guide), and will be published, printed, and promoted directly by Amazon, and also sold directly through my website, given to friends and family...

The last book is called Roadside Distractions, and will be funded by, where people interested in our project pledge money in trade for special gifts, from T-shirts, mugs, special addition, handmade copies of the book, and even guest blogger spots.  There will also be A LOT of funky Seattle stuff - if you don't live here, maybe this book will send you up for a visit.

The book consists of photos of strange highway odd-spots by both of us as kids, usually taken through the back seat windows.  We're recycling books destined for the shredder, recovering, tearing out the insides, then putting our book inside.  We're about a day from launch, so if you want to this week (or up to a month), check it out, and if you want to, pledge.  Read up on how it works.

I've found some spectacular projects, including the best film short I have ever watched.  "Chloe and Attie" is 8 minutes with no sound or or dialogue, about aging telepathic twins, one completely paralyzed, while the other takes care of her.  Very good, but twisted.  Lou pretty much cried like a little girl.

Anyway, that's what we're doing these days, at least when I wasn't bortching into the toilet.

More news to follow.


Thursday, September 22, 2011

I'm still here, just busy with the cookbook!

Sorry for the neglect of the blog, but I've been in the middle of finishing off 3 books at once.  Two cooking, one a photographic road trip.

I'll get back to you guys soon.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Harvest Time, Swimming Cats, and an Indoor Tomato Jungle

Last evening, Lou and I harvested 2 tubs of potatoes, to go with the brisket we were making.  Then, the old people went to bed before dinner (as usual), so the small red potatoes and the shockingly large Purple Majesties are still covered in dirt on the kitchen table.

Deciding to make chili out of the brisket, I needed onions, so I pulled two small Walla Wallas, then found a mature yellow squash and some freaky carrots under some leaves.  I have no idea what's up with my carrot crop.

Since it's been sunny but not warm, I have thousands of stunted green cherry tomatoes that won't turn red (or yellow - we have a rainbow of tomatoes - or, we're supposed to).  To give them a boost, I've moved the plants inside, in the Germination Station, under 5 plant lights that can be bent and moved to focus on different plants.  I moved 4 containers in, which adds up to 13 plants, and when they're doing well, I'll rotate them out.  I have about 15 other plants that need to come in.

Oh, and one of my 13-year-old Maine Coon brothers, Sebastien, actually got into the plastic kiddie pool in the back yard this morning.  Maine Coons like water - Sascha and Sebastien used to get into the bathtub with me, but not in years.  And the kiddie pool at 6 a.m.?  That cat's a freak.  He's now bundled up in a beach towel behind me on the sofa, hopefully not warming up to go in for his next laps.
That is not his happy to see you face.  He's been acting a bit strange since his buddy Howie died.  They all have, I guess.  The little calico, Olive Snook, sits next to the urn that's over his grave for long stretches during the day.  They never seemed to any interaction when he was alive, but she watched Lou dig the grave and watched me put him in it.  She's an odd little creature, in a house full of larger oddities.
Our house has been a haven for crazy this week.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Cookbook Deal!

I haven't posted lately, due to a death in the four-legged member of my family.  I do have good news, though.

I got a deal for my cookbook!  Woohoo!  I've been floating around the house all week, and panicking that I don't know the direction of the book.

Lou brainstormed with me, and we came up with the format of world travel, with entire meals instead of the boring appetizers, salads, meat, etc. format.  Lebanese, Thai, Mexican, French - you get it.

The title is Zzyxz Road Kitchen: Around the World Without a Passport.

I'm still taking applications for my Test Kitchen Army (who will receive a mention/thanks in the book, and a complimentary copy), so, please, spend an evening preparing one of my recipes and fill out a brief comment questionnaire about taste, any modifications that you made, etc.  You don't have to live in the States - it's all done over the 'Net.  I welcome foreign taste buds.

Please e-mail at, contact me on my blog page, or through Facebook.

I thank everyone who's helped out - especially everyone who has given emotional support.  I love you all.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Meal of the Week - I didn't have to cook a thing!

We went to pick up Bev from a slumber party at her best friend Zainab's house around noon today, and didn't leave until ten o'clock.  While six squealing girls from age 5 to 11 played in the kiddie pool and watched The Wizard of Oz, we spent the entire day getting to know her parents, Majid and Diana.  We talked about food so much that Majid, Zainab's father and as an enthusiastic cook as I am, decided to make a traditional Iraqi meal of ground lamb kebab cooked on swords on the grill (really!), freshly-made hummus and yoghurt dip (both made by Diana), toasted pita, Persian cucumbers, grilled tomatoes, and I know I'm forgetting something.  It's midnight and I'm in a food coma as I type this.

I joked to Lou that we just made our first grown-up couple friends.  Everyone else we know worth hanging out with are single folks.  It was a really nice day, getting to know each other, and Diana joined up for my test kitchen crew.  I couldn't believe that it was 10:00 p.m. when we left.

What a warm, relaxed family - so welcoming, and it was one of the best meals that I've ever had.  Sorry, I don't have any photos.

Ess, bench, sei a mensch,


Monday, July 18, 2011

We've Struck Starch! The First Potato Out of the Ground at Zzyzx Road's Garden!

First Potato Out of the Ground at Zzyzx Road!

This morning, Lou and I pulled out this little purple beauty out of the first bin.  She wan't very big, but it was proof that I had done something right.  I'm still going to give these guy at least another month before I harvest anything, but I could take the little baby potatoes out now.

This is a Purple Majesty, a small potato that is richer in many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants than a commercially grown russet, or a genetically-altered Frito-Lay monstrosity.  They actually have patents on their mutant potatoes.

You can buy packaged "seed potatoes" at a garden center or nursery, that looks like the photo on the right.  It's sprouted and ready for planting.  This one, however, I seeded myself, from a half-dollar-sized Purple Majesty that I got from the organic potatoe guy at one of our farmers' markets.  When you buy potatoes from Safeway, they are usually sprayed with chemicals that retard sprouting.  Even our largest nurseries did not sell seedlings for anything beyond plain, old Russets or Yukon Golds, so that's why I "grew my own."  I have about a dozen different varieties growing right now.

Because I am phenomenally lazy, there was no way in hell that I was going to dig several feet down in my back garden, so I learned that you can grow potatoes in tubs, like Rubbermaid storage bins.  I picked 18-gallon tubs, had Mom and Lou drill holes (I don't get to play with power tools ince the rice cooker incident).  You add a few inches of soil every few weeks, as the plants grow taller, until the whole tub is full, then you wait for the flowers to bloom and wither, and you have potatoes!  To the right, you can see my four tubs, full of plants and soil, and the flowers are just beginning to form.

Ess, bench, sei a mensch!


Thursday, July 14, 2011

New Recipe Posted: Cranberry-Orange Spiced Yeast Waffles

Because these are made with yeast, you make the batter the night before, and just add the eggs and fruit in the morning, while you're enjoying your first cup of tea.  Or bourbon - I won't judge.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Let's Talk About Spice, Baby - spice catalogue excerpt - looking for comments

Zzyzx Road Kitchen's World of Spices

Hi, guys!  Since I'm already on H, I thought I'd get some feedback from anyone who has some ideas about my setup so far.  Good or bad critiques welcomed equally - I have booze and Rx medications.

This is meant to go beyond the Encyclopaedia Britanica's four-line description of a plant.  People need a place to find out where and how they can use star anise, for instance, or why the hell do bay leaves exist.  I love spices, and I love exploring and using them in unique and unusual ways.  I love to share my cooking knowledge, as most cooks who I know and respect do, and I think there is a large gap in our field with regard to truly exploring spices and herbs.  I'm looking to fill that gap in one database that's easy to use and refer to time and again.

Please, I really would like to hear back from you guys.  I think you can even respond anonymously, so I can't take out your eyeballs with that melon baller that I've never used.

Ess, bench, sei a mensch!

Zzyzx Road Kitchen Chronicles

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Festival of Flowers Meal - Recipes Added

I've uploaded the recipes for that awesome salad of flowers and the super-easy ginger-rose dressing from the Meal of the Week.  I'll get out the soup recipe tomorrow - it's snuggle-with-the-husband time now.

Festival of Flowers Salad

Monday, July 4, 2011

Meal of the Week: 7/3/2011-fried squash blossoms, a floral salad, and chilled tomato-basil soup

Zzyzx Road Kitchen's Meal of the Week:
July 3, 2011
A Festival of Flowers

A salad of flowers and toasted coconut, in my precious Talavera pottery bowl that I bought in Monterrey, Mexico, straight from the potter who made it.  I couldn't bear to shrink this photo – it was such a gorgeous, colorful salad, and in a bowl suited perfectly to bring out those colors.

You have no idea how hard it was to wait until Sunday to write-up this meal.  It just might be the best meal to ever come out of the Zzyzx Road Kitchen.  It's all about fresh produce and flowers!  Yes, I said flowers!  The edible kind!

I was so excited when I saw on the Seattle Farmers' Markets' website that the "new and fresh this week" list included squash blossoms!  I couldn't wait for the market on Sunday.  We went straight to our favorite produce booth, Found and Foraged, when we got to the West Seattle Market and cleaned up on squash/zucchini blossoms.  They were even nice enough to leave us the small fruits (yellow squash, zucchini, and zucchino) with the flowers attached.

It was really hot last weekend.  Okay and sunny by Seattle standards, so we put the top down on the VW, and nearly blew Bevvie out of the backseat in the wind over the West Seattle Bridge.  Poor thing - her life was so much easier before we rolled the Land Rover down Mt. Darland.

Squash/Zucchini/Zucchino blossoms, frying

The finished product, ready for dipping and eating!

I made mustard-balsamic dipping sauce, and the five of us devoured 3 pounds of fried zucchini blossoms in about 15 minutes.  We should have gained 20 pounds each...

Next up was a salad made with wood violet, which has amazing, w/soft lavender flowers, and wood sorrel, with tiny white flowers. I tossed it with my kick-ass homemade vinaigrette, when topped it with toasted coconut, asiago cheese, and brilliantly-colored nasturtium blossoms. Such a hit, and Bev loved the idea of eating flowers for dinner.

For the main course, I made a cold tomato-basil-mint soup, out of pureed fresh Roma tomatoes, and two cans of diced, fire-roasted tomatoes, fresh basil and mint leaves, several cloves of garlic, and a bit of caraway and lime thyme, garnished with parmesan, Italian flat-leaf parsley, and toasted coconut.
Chilled Tomato, Basil, and Mint Soup w/a garnish of basil, parsley.
parmesan, and toasted coconut

With my handy immersion blender, I pureed the whole thing until it was smooth.  I put it in the fridge in my big yellow bowl, and kept changing out freezer packs to cool it off enough that it would be nice and chilled by the time we were through with the salad.  It was heavenly.  Lou and Mom both took some to work, and with what was left, I used as a base a red wine and red balsamic sauce for my mom's chicken and angel hair.  It's what she chose for her birthday dinner.  Great choice, Mom.

Our awesome new/stop & swap patio set, all ready for dinner.

Stay tuned for recipes.   None of this is very difficult, providing that you check to see if your flowers are edible or poisonous.  It's all in the details.*S*  Seriously, the soup  was a cinch.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Floating Farmers' Market - climb aboard the Virginia V in Lake Union Park Wharf - fresh, local produce, right off the boat

My husband brought this information to me.  The website is, and the floating market is open from 11-3 on Thursdays until July 28th.  It looks like it might go longer -it's just that their online schedule doesn't go past the end of July.

My husband brought this information to me today.  I had no idea that it existed.  Fantastic idea, sort of like a floating farmers' market, or Full Circle with a steam engine.  (The website is, and the boat/market is open from 11-3 on Thursdays until July 28th.  It looks like it might go longer - it's just that their online schedule doesn't go past the end of July.

"Vendors display locally grown produce, specialty foods and artisan crafts on board the 125' wooden vessel--just as it was done a century ago. Market visitors can tour the ship for free and learn about Puget Sound agricultural and maritime heritage while they shop. (There is plenty of space on deck to enjoy lunch with fantastic shoreline views of downtown Seattle and Lake Union).

How can you not RSVP to this party?  I love the Virginia V, so I will be there this Thursday, and would love to see the rest of you there.

Ess, bench, sei a mensch!


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Getting Back to (Ab)normal, Zzyzx Kitchen Style

First off, I send a big kiss to my Danish stalkers.  I still wish you'd register, but I'm glad that you're out there.

Next, I'll admit it.  I'm a Gemini.  I'm all about keeping up the blog and then - OOH, SHINY! - and hope I saved the recipe doc.  I need to keep up a schedule for you guys, to make sure that I get new drink and food recipes to you, keep up my "Five Questions for a Farmer" (easier since Lou got me a digital voice recorder for my birthday) series, report on what's new from the farms each week around the PNW (it's all about squash flowers this week in Seattle), and general observations from the land of eating local.

I'll (try) to have my farmer interviews up by Tuesday.  Drink recipes on Wed, a main course, starter, maybre brunch, and, of course, dessert.  By now, you know the my tastebuds run all over the map, but I'll try to keep it in a single hemisphere each week.

Also, there's the garden.  We got our first squash blossom today, and Mom and Lou told me not to eat it.  They will, no doubt, keep it for themselves.  I'm keeping watch.  I'll take another garden inventory, and I also think a "What do Zanne's people eat each week?" log.  That might be pretty boring, or, it might poke me in the ass and make me cook some more interesting food.

Ess, bench, sei a mensch

Monday, June 20, 2011

Five Questions for a Farmer: 6/12/2011 - Interview with Palouse Pastured Poultry's Allen Widman (aka the guys with the green eggs)

Welcome to my weekly interview sessions, Five Questions for a Farmer.  Each week, I will chat up a different farmer/food developer from one of Puget Sound's local farmers' markets, whether from near or far.  My family tries to leave as little a carbon footprint as possible, but some things are worth the mileage it takes to get to Seattle.  Palouse Pastured Poultry is one of those exceptions.

First off, I wanted to let Allen Widman, owner of Palouse Pastured Poultry, know that I admire their family's farming philosophy - true free-range, even fed with feed that they grow themselves.  You can't get anymore humane than that on a farm.

Palouse Pastured Poultry got me to try colored eggs for the first time.  Not Easter eggs (I'm a Jew, people), but real, colored chicken eggs.  I have no idea why, but I've had an irrational fear of brown eggs my whole life - all 37 years.  I have been on a mission this year to experience, taste, create, and love everything there is to love about natural, local foods.  Palouse Pastured Poultry was one of my first steps...

To give you an idea of the farm philosophy, I pulled this from the Palouse Pastured Poultry website:

"We can trace our family origins back to 7:45 a.m., Hulbert Hall, January 2000, Washington State University, Natural Resource law taught by Ray Huffaker.  That fateful morning, I saw the skies part, a ray of light shine down, a chorus of angels began to sing (or was it Barry White) at the first glimpse of the then Emmy Sunleaf.  After at least five rejections, Emmy finally agreed to a date chaperoned by her kick-boxing, combat-boot wearing friend.  Two years later we were married and can now boast 3 children, 1300+ or - chickens, 130 ducks, 200+ or- game birds, a donkey, mule, horse, 4 dogs, 4 cats, and a large food bill."

Where can you go with an opening line like that?  Allen tells me that I can go much, much farther.  During our interview on Sunday, he enticed me into buying a whole chicken for roasting.  Me.  Roast.  A.  Chicken.  A whole chicken.  Apparently, he's never seen me on Thanksgiving morning, shoving turkey guts in my husband's face, ordering him to do something with it, because I'm incredibly squeamish about violating body cavities without a formal invitation.  When I make chicken, it's boneless, skinless breasts - you know, nothing that looks like an actual animal.

I've never been the girl to get schmutz under her nails, but I remade my "food self" last year, trying everything (except mayo), even planting an extensive vegetable garden, so one little chicken can't be too hard, right?  I just have to not think about the poultry assembly line.  I can't imagine that it's too gory at Palouse, though.

The meat sold in farmers' markets in Seattle isn't from the slaughterhouses of SW Arizona (don't ask - it's Upton Sinclair-worthy).  These are caring, loving families, producing quality, healthy, and humane products for our tables.  At least for those of us carnivores who bother to take notice of animal welfare before it ends up on your plate, the Widmans are to be admired and respected for the love that they give their animals and the way they teach their children and customers.  Sure, it's a bit more expensive, but, for me, knowing that the animals have been treated humanely and aren't full of chemicals and hormones that end up in my family's bodies makes it worth the extra few dollars.  And I have to say, after tasting the Palouse chicken that my husband and I cooked, it was completely worth it.  Juicy, tastful - it just pulled apart, and I will admit that I was stripping pieces of chicken off of the leftover bird all night.

Anyway, back to my interview with Allen, I had only a few questions.

I love their eggs.  Tasty, as colorful on the outside as on the inside (you can tell the difference between their green eggs, their tan eggs, and their dark brown eggs by the yolks!).  So, just what is it that gives those beautiful, mint green eggs that vibrant yolk?  I've never seen those anywhere else.  His secret?  Trial-and-error cross-breeding different chickens and roosters.  He also attributed their thicker-than-average shells to this.  Let's just say that these eggs travel very, very well.  Now, I'm a pro at the one-handed, absolutely not paying attention while reading a trashy romance novel in the other hand egg-cracking, but these guys whip my ass into dropping the book and watching what I'm doing.  Okay, I don't read trashy romance novels, but I have doused a copy of Speaker for the Dead into French toast batter more than once...

Palouse Pastured Poultry's Farm is located in Eastern Washington, a rarity at Seattle's farmers' markets, and when asked why they only have a booth at one market (Broadway/Capitol Hill market), I was told that the markets were "locked down," - full - and that they are looking for a spot in another weekend market, to make their long trip more economic.  What a shame, considering what they (literally) bring to the table. 

I asked where his farming philosophy came from, and was told that he'd grown up on a game farm.  This sounded like something very important to pass on to his children, and theirs.

I told him that Palouse sounded like nirvana for chooks, and he laughed, hopefully in agreement.

I asked how they felt about farm visitors - if someone was out their way and wanted to have a peek around their farm, he told me that they were more than happy to let folks tour their site, but because of the amount of work, especially this time of year, they tended to give a few highlights, and let people loose on their own, because the all of the hard work that has to be completed by the staff.  I, for one, am very interested in getting a tour of Palouse Pastured Poultry Farm.  As Allen told my husband and me, we could stick around longer, but we'd be issued a bucket to help.

Mojo Sauce Reinvented on My Birthday - Tomatillos & Tomatoes

I was thrilled with the way that this turned out on my birthday.  Adding the tomatillos and tomatoes just brought even more flavors to my favorite condiment.  I will always use this recipe from now on.

Mojo Sauce w/Tomatillos and Tomatoes

Renton Stop & Stop: We Got Booty!

I just realized that I have all of these posts still in draft, so I thought We so cleaned up at the Stop and Swap.  We didn't have anything to swap, at least anything that we could transport in my VW.

We ended up with a fantastic teak patio table with two leaves and four chairs (we can always get more, and we started out with two).  I got a great desk that is perfect for makeup, and Lou and I FINALLY put it upstairs this afternoon (he took a mental health day).  This project also included moving the upstairs sofa and table, moving my old desk to the back porch, and flanking my dressers and secretaries, so I finally have a place in my bedroom to put away my socks and panties.

And did I mention the scores of clay and ceramic pots that I snagged ten minutes before the "official" start.  I was NOT going to wait for someone else to snag those babies...

Oh, and I got an AWESOME gift for Sweetpea.  She'll love it - I know it.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

A Day of Gardening, a Night of Cooking

I cooked my first whole chicken!  It was gorgeous!  Lou worked the fire (I don't go near the grill without a fireproof suit).  It was so moist, and my marinade (lemon juice, thyme, garlic, sage, and tarragon) rocked some serious ass (per Lou).  I had a zen moment with Big Daddy (my favorite knife) and several shapes of garlic.  I sauteed the garlic, toasted and cooked this bright, vibrant green bamboo rice, and carmelized carrot slivers until they were sweet and perfect.  I breaded and fried garlic flowers (you people MUST try this).

Damn.  Apparently, we didn't get a photo of this. Trust me - it was gorgeous.  I'll put up the recipe in a few days.  I was shocked at how non-squeamish I was over the whole chicken thing.  I conquered!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Yo-Ho-Ho-Hum Pirate Night at the Duck Dodge

It was the crowd, my husband called it.  We picked up Bev, changed her into a costume at the marina, since we were expecting to get there early to ready the boat, so we might actually hit our 7:10 start with the rest of our class (Slow Boats Full of Drunks) - I'd called Dan earlier and had the combination to the cabin written on my arm.  We were surprised to be met at the Mirus by Brian, the co-owner of the boat.  We'd never met, but he seems very sweet and genuine.  Sweet, goofy engineer type, like Dan, and my last husband.  He told me that he'd bought the boat without ever having been on a sailboat.

Since Dan was running late (with good reason - he was doing the parental hand-off on Beacon Hill), we decided to wait, then Brian got a voicemail that Dan was waiting at the marina gate, locked out, so Brian or Lou let him in, and came back with Dan and two women dressed like porn pirates.  Not good.  I was expecting them to break out a bottle of Jagermeister.  I made a faux pas right at the start when I accidentally mentioned that I'd seen the blonde's work in Dan's homemade porn collection.  And it only went downhill from there...

JUST as we were ready to cast-off, Sebastian, the boat's former co-owner and all-around Zeig Heil jackass, comes sauntering up the dock with his superior aryan race grin and climbs aboard.

Passenger count on the 28' boat is now at 9, and we missed our start time.  So, the only person on the boat who actually knows how to sail is Lou, but he doesn't even bother trying to correct Sebastian's captaining.  Dan's okay, I can jibe, tack, and man the tiller passably, but I think Bev can sail better than any of the drunks on board.  Dan, Lou, and I sail very well together.

Lou gave it a name.  The vibe was all wrong.  The mix of crowds was not good.  Bev and I spent most of the night on the bow, ignoring the skank sisters and trying to avoid Sebastian.  He made me cry, but I can't remember why (there was bourbon).  Lou spent a few minutes concoling me on the bow.  Unfortunately, my self-imposed exile also meant that I got no Dan Time.

Next time I RSVP for the Duck Dodge, I want a passenger list in advance.  It was such a let down.  I love sailing when it's just me, Dan, Lou, and Pancho (Dan's libidinous mutt).

Scram, bitch, I'm on a break.

Recent Meals

  • Grilled (in the rain) marinated top sirloin w/my Steak Frite and London Pub Sauce
  • Fried chayote
  • Roasted aubergine, zucchini, and yellow squash
  • Soft garlic sandwich rolls, and we made meatball sandwiches
  • Sirloin rubbed with cardamom-laced Turkish coffee
  • Chocolate truffles w/rum and bourbon
  • Petit fours
  • Florentine cookies drizzled with chocolate
  • 13-Bean soup w/parmesan rind and leftover ham
  • Apple spice cardamom muffins
  • Guinnes-injected pot roast
  • Cran-blueberry corn muffins
  • Spaghetti and meatballs - basic, but always a hit in this house
  • Hummus w/roasted garlic, olive, red pepper, and smoked paprika
  • Veggie stirfry w/julienned baby carrots, green peppers, garlic, chickpeas, and balsamic, served over Chinese Black Forbidden Rice
  • Ginger-carrot cake
  • Ginger cranberry mojito
  • Lime-cranberry-mint-strawberry seltzer
  • Lavender-mint iced tea
  • Trip to Beirut: Shish taouk, shish kebab, halvah, garlic naan, rice pilaf w/figs, raisins, and pecans, w/my famous lemon-mint-garlic Lebanese potatoes
  • London Broil w/a wilted spinach and mustard green salad with a bacon, balsamic, and mustard dressing
  • Sweet and red potato pancakes w/zucchini and peppers w/chicken apple sausage
  • Italian wedding soup w/homemade croutons and meatballs
  • "Rock the Casbah" Cardamom, Ginger, Apple Pork Roast w/Armadillo Rice (for you fans of The Clash who remember the cover of Combat Rock)
  • Individual Quiche Lorraine
  • Prosciutto-wrapped beef cubes w/mustard pan sauce
  • Chicken Sausage w/garlic naan and dijon mustard - Lou and I were really drunk.
  • Salt potatoes, mixed fingerlings, lightly mashed, with lot of butter
  • Focaccia w/garlic, onions, mozarella and cherry tomatoes
  • Rosemary and lavender bread
  • Spicy greens and spinach salad w/fresh mozzarella pearls, strawberries, and a strawberry vinegarette
  • Polenta casserole w/cheese and squash baked IN acorn squash halves