Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy (gourmet!!) Anniversary!

Jeff and I never got our anniversary weekend this year, so we squeaked it in right under the wire. My brother and sister-in-law watched our kids for us on Thanksgiving night, but we really wanted a couple of days. Besides nothing was open that night. So we treated ourselves to two nights in the hotel we discovered that Thanksgiving freebee night. We love this hotel --it's a four star, but mainly we love it because the fitness room ROCKS! It's got all of these cardio machines with personal tv's and ipod jacks, and a full set of free weights, some weight machines, and a big view over the whole downtown. Big cool mirrors leaning against the walls too --you know like in those dayspa places? The beds are wonderful there too. Jeff said we could go for lunch wherever I wanted, so we smoked out Tony Caputo's deli. I'd read reviews of it in Gourmet magazine, and really wanted to check out the world quality chocolate they carried, as well as finally find smoked Spanish paprika that keeps showing up in my recipes lately. Found both. The chocolate bar in the picture above won third place in the International Chocolate People Secret Society or the ICPSS (OK I can't really remember the name of the group --but it sounded impressive). The cocoa beans it's made of come from Madagascar, and I'm not kidding, when I tasted it, I could taste hints of oranges, and anise, and plums and was like when people rave about a fine wine. Caputos teaches chocolate pairing classes --like wine pairing. Any takers to go to one with me ? Like we all need an excuse to eat more chocolate... Tony Caputo waited on us himself, and I'm whispering to Jeff: "I think that's him --I think that's him!" It was like I met a rockstar. I also got some big huge Fava beans that I haven't seen since I was a kid, and some big ol' Lebanese couscous, and some Chilean Porcinis, and some fresh chestnuts for my sister who watched our kids this time --we used to have our Dad roast them for us as kids --kind of a neat memory, and two other gourmet chocolates that we ate there with lunch --one with a caramel with fleur de sel. Heaven.

Yesterday we had a million hours to wait for our movie, so we walked around Dick's sporting goods for a while, and then...Sur la Table! Jeff was REALLY spoiling me. That's not his idea of the best way to spend an hour and a half.Guess what I talked him into? "It's on sale for half off Honey..."

Yes! Now I can make all the protein, stevia, kabocha or pure fruit ice cream I want! Check out some recipes on HEAB.

Then when we got home, THIS was waiting for me. Jeff actually heard about this from a friend, and it has been on my wish list, until he ordered it for me. All of a sudden, it's like I know everything about food in the whole world. OK, I don't know, but this book does! You can look up any food: Fava beans, mandarin oranges, dates, and it tells you all of the flavors that work well with it. You want to create a new recipe using...savoy cabbage? This is a good place to start. Here I took a picture of a page..

Eh, not so good. Maybe if you click on it it will enlarge. I'm super excited anyway. Oh, and our movie? We saw Avatar. Beautiful! Highly recommend it. Beautiful world they created for that movie. Someone had a brilliant imagination. And there's enough fights for my guy to enjoy it too. And I want one of those flying animal things in the next life.


Kira said...

First, thank you for the Chestnuts (how do I cook them?). It sounded like a perfect couple of days for you. Please let your kids know:
Tia: it was like hanging out with a sister. She was so helpful and smart. I am glad she made progress on the swimming.
Ari: If I only had 1/2 the excitement for life that Ari has I would be good to go. EVERYTHING made her so excited. She made little things more fun.

Kai, Kai: When did he grow up so much. He was so thankful, and such a jaberwaky! He was absolutley no trouble (except when I threw out his rootbeer by accident...he was MAD).

belann said...

Sounds like days that make for wonderful memories. Can't have too many of those.