Monday, January 25, 2010

Monday Meanderings and a Sushi Party

Lunch today was a mini sushi party with the young men who are helping out this summer. We had a lot of fun making our own rolls, choosing from tempura fried shrimp, fake crab, smoked salmon, avocado, cream cheese, carrot slivers, thin red pepper slices, spicy mayonnaise and onion. Very little cooking (only the rice and tempura shrimp) which is a big plus since it's another hot, HOT day. Then it was off in the air conditioned car (yes it's working again!) to the air conditioned Venezia's for a little fruity sorbet goodness.

Tonight we're going to my tutor's house for dinner and I'm taking pecan pie. I made the dough for the crust this morning and it's chilling in the fridge. I have NEVER had any success with homemade crusts so y'all might just say a little prayer that we won't need a chainsaw to cut it (not out of the realm of possibility since there was that time we could not cut one of my crusts with even my sharpest knife).

If the crust is inedible, I'm planning to scoop out the pecan filling and eat it with a spoon.

I'm not even kidding.

I was trying to remember the last time I had pecan pie but my mind cannot reach that far back. If I'd known pecans would be impossible to find here I'd have eaten more pecan pie and butter pecan ice cream before we moved overseas.

But thanks to Dana and Sharon, I have enough pecans to make several pies which makes me want to do the happy dance. If I had an ice cream maker I'd try my hand at butter pecan ice cream too but, alas, we did not bring ours from the states and we've only seen one here and that was months ago in some little store in Cordoba we can't find again. *sigh* Probably a good thing for my hips that we can't find it though.

Because we all know that ice cream is WAY more fattening than pie.

While we're on the topic of food, let me say I should have just guzzled that basil infused olive oil when I had the chance. Because within an hour of posting yesterday the oil was no more. After accidentally knocking it off the counter, Ivan was able to salvage a scant 1/4 cup from the intact bottom of the broken bottle by straining it through a paper towel. The top half of the bottle shattered into dozens of shards and the poor guy spent over half an hour cleaning up the mess. My kitchen did smell pretty good for a while though.

Yesterday I made potato salad and bar-b-que ribs, American style. I slow roasted the ribs in the toaster oven (which is banished to the garage for the foreseeable future because of the heat) and then smothered them with some honest-to-goodness bar-b-que sauce we found at Walmart in the foreign foods section. Since bar-b-que is an integral part of my southern heritage, I can only go so long without a saucy fix. I made traditional potato salad and was amused when, for a snack last night, Ivan had a bowl but added sliced olives to it.

Why do all my Monday meanderings tend to be about food?

For that matter, most of my posts in general.

I have never listed food as one of my hobbies, but probably should -- or maybe "obsession" would be a better description.

Shall we talk about something else?

Tina is VERY excited that the Colts are going to the Superbowl! Also a little sad she'll miss a great party or eleven because you know that pretty much everyone in Indiana is going to be having one. I imagine there are QUITE A FEW EXCITED FANS in Colts country.

I came across a movie based on the book, Tara Road, by Maeve Binchy. Although this wasn't one of my favorites by Binchy, I was pleasantly surprised to see the movie did stay pretty true to the book. It came out three years ago but I never heard about it; was it even in American theaters?

Tina and I went to the store mid-morning to get a few last minute things for the sushi party; it was ridiculously crowded and we weren't even able to get into the parking lot. I've never seen it that busy on a weekday morning so can only postulate that it's due to the high number of tourists in town this January. Last year was a bad year for the tourism industry but looks like things are back to normal this year. Crazy traffic all over town, plus all the stores and restaurants are crowded even on the outskirts.  Ivan said the official website for Carlos Paz listed the occupancy rate at 95% weekend before last. That, my friends, is a LOT of people!

It's also much hotter this year than last. We're having longer stretches of days in the high 90s/low 100s followed by nights that drop no lower than the high 60s. Last year we'd have a few really hot days, then a storm would blow in from the south and cool things down and we did just fine with a few fans. This year we bought more fans but there are days when even having a fan in every room just doesn't cut it.

Not sure if it's the heat or possibly all the extra vegetation in the swampy-field-formerly-known-as-a-lake, but the mosquitos are terrible this year. No matter what time of day we go outside we get eaten alive. You've never seen anyone hang clothes on the line as fast as I've gotten this year -- doing laundry qualifies as aerobic exercise since now it really gets my heart rate up!

Time to go make that pecan pie. With the hopefully edible homemade crust.


The Bug said...

Who needs crust anyway? :)

So sorry about your bottle of olive oil - I'm sure that was VERY disappointing.

SmallTownRunner said...

Oh, my heart just sank when you said the olive oil is no more. I'm so, so sorry for your loss. *sob*

Maybe you can have your own Superbowl party there? Will you be able to get the game at all?


rita said...

So sad.
Too bad.

Arriba los Potros ;)

Suerte con el 'pie' de pacana :)

skoots1mom said...

oh, i was so sad to hear of the accident with your olive oil...that sounds so 'me'!
Everything I touched yesterday I either broke it, dropped it or spilled it...including the pancake batter in the bottle I was shaking as the top went flying off and everything in the kitchen, including me & hubs, got drenched in wet, eggy pancake batter!
Praying up that pecan pie, girl!!

Sharon said...

After reading about the heat and the mosquitoes I suddenly felt grateful for the cold. Thanks!

Betty said...

I guess you don´t have Crisco shortening in the foreign item aisle... :)
I found some last week at a specialty store and it made a HUGE difference in my pie crust.
But once thats gone, we go bake to using the chain saw again.... haha

lagirl/Sweet tea said...

Fingers crossed your pie crust is GREAT. It's like riding a bike, once you get it figured out you'll never forget how.

Melissa said...

Awww I am SO sorry about your olive oil. That is really sad. I hope the crust comes out great. I would eat the filling too if it doesn't though.
Finding the BBQ sauce in foreign made me laugh alot since I am from Texas. We have a whole aisle dedicated to it I think. Maybe I will send you some some day. :)

Amy said...

One tear for the olive oil...I acutally audibly gasped when I read that...

Good luck on that pie crust and I am oh so very sorry it is so hot.


Debbie said...

When I was a wee little lass, I would only eat the gooey part of pecan pies. No crust and no pecans. Just the sugar and butter! I was NOT a dumb kid:)