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archive for August 2012

the maine thing

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

I’ve been in Maine for about 48 hours, sampling their fine fare, meeting the good people, and exploring wonderful farms and local businesses. I’ve heard so much about Maine and it only took me 40 years to get out here to see it for myself. Just wanted to share a few snaps before I ship off to sea:

flash fried shishito peppers

blueberry shrub spritzer

learning about educating children on the gulf of maine

visiting one of many farms

beautiful lunch

pretty spaces




an open kitchen

how about a glass of ahhh

Sunday, August 26th, 2012

Recipe: hibiscus tea lemonade

The US Pro Cycling Challenge has been touring Colorado this week and on Saturday, they came to Boulder and more specifically (for me), they climbed up to and through my town of Nederland (Ned) in the mountains, for a truly exciting day of racing. Tens of thousands lined the streets of Boulder and the finish up on the flanks of Flagstaff Mountain. Jeremy tracked the race progress online as they entered Boulder Canyon on their way up to Ned. It is a commute we both know well enough to drive in our sleep, and we were astounded at how quickly they passed each landmark (the tunnel, Sugarloaf, Boulder Falls, The Narrows). By the time Jeremy announced the peloton was at The Narrows, I packed my camera and we set off, out the front door.

neighbors waiting with great anticipation for the riders

We walked a quick five minutes to the race route and as I found a place to set up, Jeremy said the break had reached the dam. The road wasn’t packed with people, but there were a lot more than I have ever seen on that stretch of road before. Everyone was smiling, happy, excited. It was a gorgeous, sunny day. We knew the break was arriving in town as we heard a roar of cheering and cowbells rise from down the valley. Before we knew it, police vehicles were rounding the bend and then we caught sight of the first group as they climbed steadily up the hill.

the break (14 riders)

the chase (2 riders)

and the peloton

bmc riders

the rest of the pack

and away they go

How cool is that? Very freaking cool. But it was actually kinda hot (by my definition, which is anything above 70°F) and I thought about a nice cool glass of something or other as we walked back home with our neighbor. As far as I am concerned, anytime is a great time for lemonade – but really, it is quintessential summer, is it not? My beverage of choice is the Arnold Palmer: half iced tea and half lemonade. Lately, I’ve been digging on what I refer to as the hibi Palmer, but it is basically hibiscus tea lemonade.

dried hibiscus flowers from savory spice shop

all you need: sugar, dried hibiscus flowers, lemons

Never having been a fan of plain hibiscus tea, I was dubious when someone at Salto Coffee Works told me their hibiscus tea lemonade was very popular. But then I took a taste and yes, it’s amazingly refreshing, tart, and smooth. More fruity than an Arnold Palmer.

making sugar water

steep the dried hibiscus flowers in the hot sugar water

meanwhile, squeeze some lemon juice

**Jump for more butter**

never stop

Friday, August 24th, 2012

Recipe: porcini pizza

I’m back in Colorado. That was a quick less-than-48-hour trip in which we managed to get not a whole lot of sleep. But the reason we got so little sleep was because there is always plenty to cram into a day when we’re in California. I mean, not only are there just too many fun things to do (and great food to sample), but there are always some very wonderful friends to see. Our second day went like this:

visiting a little bakery in napa

enjoying the art while eating a strawberry croissant

pretty glass at a tasting room

client meeting and engagement shoot

a late dinner with elise and guy

Jeremy and I returned home Wednesday morning on a 6:20 am flight. Then we proceeded to gather our pup from Camp Crazy, give her a suds session, and prepare our place for house guests arriving that evening. You may know Chuck as the Chief Gawker (he runs foodgawker among many other sites), but I first became friends with him and Hungry Bear years ago when they blogged at Sunday Nite Dinner. They visited for less than 24 hours, but I managed to show them a little bit of my Colorado.

picking up our kaweah girl

chuck and hungry bear hiked up to a lovely alpine lake with me

appetizers at the kitchen (quintessential boulder)

he is still a food blogger at heart

Did I mention the freshman and their parents are in Boulder this week? Well, they so totally are. It takes twice as long to get anywhere in town right now. I had a lot to do between saying good-bye to Chuck and Hungry Bear and meeting up with my parents to celebrate my mom’s birthday. I suppose the upside to this is that dodging all of these out-of-town drivers helped raise my heart rate and keep me awake.

picked up some lilies for mom

of course, my folks decided on frasca

beautiful cured salmon starters

jeremy’s primi (rigatoni with tender veal cheek)

During dinner, one of the servers recognized me from a delivery I had made the previous week to Frasca. I promised Mr. Bobby Stuckey some fresh porcinis if I ever found enough nice bouchons to bring to him. Well, I did and so I was good for my word. I had handed the bag to this young woman and asked that she send it along to Bobby as he was busy in the kitchen and I was in a rush for a meeting. She told me that he gave it to the kitchen and they made him a nice dinner from the mushrooms. “He was very happy,” she smiled. So glad to hear it. I had my own bag of fresh porcinis at home to polish off before heading out of town earlier this week. There was no way I was going to waste these babies. Jeremy and I decided to make some pizza.

there is no such thing as enough porcinis

keep it simple: garlic butter, salt, pepper, mozzarella, porcinis, pizza dough

**Jump for more butter**