Sunday, February 8, 2009

Riding High, Good Food, Lot's of Laughs!

This weekend was a ton of fun! Several reasons why...

1. I'm still riding a high from the relay meet on Thursday when I swam really fast. I'm very excited about that 50 free split I had that was 18.80. This solidifies the training I've done and gives my mind more power and confidence that I'm going to swim really fast both this spring and this summer.

2. I watched a hilarious movie called "Pineapple Express."

3. Went to dinner at a restaurant in Austin called Vespaio. I had this appetizer that was a triangular shaped pasta shell filled with a butternut squash that was spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice in a sage brown butter sauce, crisp sage leaves on top and candied walnuts.

4. A friend of mine named Abbey came in town to visit. She is one of those people who embraces humor in every aspect of the word and finds it in everything. Abbey is full of energy...literally a trip!

10 comments:

Will Sarosdy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Donna Binkholder said...

Very nice blog!! I am hungry now and it is bedtime...I am sitting here thinking..Garrett always has great food to mention in his blogs..haha...

Glad you are still riding high...just don't get bucked off the horse. Keep with that confidence you are doing an amazing job proving what you can do and have accomplished in your training through intense races.

I love that movie also cracks me up.

And awesome glad you had a fun time with her. I think this covers everything.

Miss Melanie said...

Treasure this special weekend in your heart always! I can hear the joy in your post. I hope you have a good week.

I tried guanciale in Mark Bittman's Bucatini alla Amatriciana recipe, and discovered that while the taste of the drippings was amazing, the texture of the guanciale was just weird. Next time I'll cook the guanciale and discard the solids, and saute the onions & tomatoes in the drippings. I enjoy taking bits & pieces from different recipes and putting them together to make a dish my own.

Going to try making quinoa for the first time, with roasted corn. I really looked at labels this past grocery shopping trip - scary how many additives some foods have. Moving ever closer to REAL food.

Isa said...

Glad you had fun this weekend!

It´s always nice when we're with people that are fun...

This weekend I started the preparations for the carnival...it was great, and like every weekend I saw "Prison Break", the best show ever lol

Keep up the good work!!

J said...

Recharge weekend, to keep up with the good things like, ...good movies, good friends, and "Good eats"! No pun intended!

Seriously, you got see Vision Quest! Its the funniest and most motivating movie from the eighties!

The pasta with butternut squash, I had something similar (ravioli) with pumpkin/squash and it was surprisingly flavorful!

Sjtientje said...

Sounds like a perfect weekend to me. It gives you the energy to go faster.

That appetizer must have been tastefull. But I always think that the cinnamon is too much.

We too, like Isa, started with the preparations for our cultural 'Carnaval' which starts february 22nd....

gr. Christina

Sarah said...

Weekends like that are always good for reviving the soul. Be thankful!

Soly said...

Haha. I sooo wanna see "Pineapple Express."

Garrett said...

guanciale??? will you post or send me the recipe please...

I feel refreshed!

Miss Melanie said...

Here's my recipe for Bucatini
Alla Amatriciana. I think my recipe is better than Mark Bittman's. Guanciale are cured pork jowls - pork cheeks. You can get them from Niman Ranch. Here is a NYT article on it. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/16/dining/16ital.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=guanciale&st=cse

1 pound dry fat spaghetti, such as bucatini or percatelli
1 tablespoon olive oil (omit if using guanciale)
1 teaspoon chopped or minced garlic
¼ - ½ pound chopped pancetta or guanciale depending on how meaty you want the sauce
One glug of white or red wine (optional)
1 medium red onion, sliced vertically into strips
1 tablespoon dried basil (optional)
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 29-oz can crushed tomatoes, chunky style if available, or used diced tomatoes
Also optional, and not exactly authentic - add chopped roasted red peppers.
________________________________________

1.Cook pasta according to package directions and doneness preference. If the pasta is done before the sauce, toss with a bit of olive oil, and keep warm while waiting for the sauce to cook.

2a. If using pancetta - heat olive oil and garlic over medium heat in deep wide skillet. When garlic sizzles, add the pancetta. Render the fat until the pancetta is golden brown. If using wine, add a little glug, and let reduce a bit. Stir up the golden brown bits that stick to the pan.

2b. If using guanciale - heat guanciale over medium heat, and render the fat until the guanciale is golden brown. If using wine, add a little glug, and let reduce a bit. Stir up the golden brown bits that stick to the pan. Remove the guanciale chunks from the pan and reserve, to add later if you like the texture of it. Keep the drippings in the skillet.

3.Add onions and let them sweat until softened.

4.Add the dried basil if using, crushed red pepper, and crushed tomatoes to the pan. Heat through. Add the drained pasta to the tomato/onion mixture, or the other way around, depending on which pot is bigger. Stir pasta with sauce, and serve. Approximately 4-6 servings.


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