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Showing posts from August, 2012

A Requiem For The Brown Derby

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Ms. Garlic and I were sad to see the news that The Brown Derby was closing.  Sometimes, even a restaurant you were once a fan of closes after it's seen its best days.  The Brown Derby, though, after an uneven opening was really hitting its stride, with cuisine that matched what was widely acknowledged as a beautiful redesign of the space.

 We still had a gift card to redeem (Ms. Garlic was impressed enough by our earlier visit to get it as an anniversary gift), and we had an excellent meal this week.    Most impressive was the marinated pork chop Ms. Garlic ordered.   I'm a dissenter in the foodie rush to embrace pork -- unless it's smoked, cured, or (sometimes) barbequed, I generally find it bland.    But the pork, served with an flavorful chutney and the too-little seen Utica Greens as a side, was good enough that even I would have ordered it again.    My veal with potatoes, lobster, and asparagus was also a winner.    They had finally put together a high-quality, reaso…

Outer Troy Tour

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Today I got a real tour of outer Troy from my lovely new friend and professional cake decorator, Sandy. When I first found out she was a professional cake baker I am pretty sure I mumbled something like "livin' the dream!" even though I worked really hard for and am really lucky to have the job I have. Hoping to learn a thing or two from her, I suggested we check out the Confectionery House in Brunswick. It was way cool. You could make any kind of candy or decorate any kind of cake with the supplies from here. I had fantasies of buying all the candy bar making supplies and coming up with a cool combination called "The Emily Bar" to show up to the food swap with and give as Christmas presents, but I couldn't think of what that bar would be so I gave up on the idea. I bought a cool angled frosting spreader type of tool, brioche molds. and this awesome bear pan. Watch out, everyone I know, I am going to start showing up everywhere with bear shaped cakes!


Then…

Wynantskill, I kinda love you

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Where does summer go? When you are a kid, it stretches on with no end in sight.

 Below is a photo from my teenage lifeguarding days. Is that Sun-in? You mean like the disgusting comb-in hair lightener/fryer? Why, yes it is! Just awful!


But as an adult with brunches, BBQs, business trips, and countless hours spent working in an office in front of a computer screen (not sunbathing while reading a book), it seems like you eat a few amazing tomatoes and it is gone. Its hot. It can be sticky. You can forget why you are doing what you are doing, and why you were so enthusiastic about it in the first place. (As a side note - if you lose your faith in food blogging, this post alone can restore it almost completely.) A day can end with a coworker calling you, you both recalling something so frustrating that you both just end up laughing until you are almost crying out of crazy satire. Then, when you think of it later while walking down the street, you crack up laughing again because out of fru…

Party of One

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I am having a party of one tonight (thanks to Wild Oats Market) and it looks like this:


Why is that you ask? Because after two weeks of dogsitting in North Adams I get to go home tomorrow. Hooray! What did I do in two weeks you ask? Some highlights:

I went to a North Adams Steeplecats game. 

 They played the Darien, CT team and were losing pretty bad in the first 6 innings. There were some really sloppy errors. One catcher even hit the batter in the face when he was trying to throw the ball to the pitcher. I had a great time though. They served Lickety Split ice cream. My husband is allergic to nuts, so I ate as many as I wanted while I was out here. I had butter pecan at the game.


The mascot, Slider, kissed me on the hand at one point.


 When they were losing I called my sister and talked about a Clue themed party she had. The more I talked to her the better they did, and they ended up coming back to win 4-2. So thanks to my sister for helping them win!


I thought a lot about solitude…

Truth in Food Blogging

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It took me a long to get to a place where I have a balanced relationship with food. I previously wrote about the pressures on brides to lose weight. I also wrote about thinspiration on Pinterest. I've read quotes by the singer Adele where she says she has seen where obsessions with weight go, and she doesn't want to do that to herself mentally. So I'm against that - I'm against obsession, diet pills, girls I knew who would lick Doritos and throw them away on the side of the couch so their boyfriends would think they were actually eating chips. I'm in favor of vegetables and making some effort to get some form of exercise. Of course you want to feel good about yourself and fit in your clothes, but other than that I think worrying too much about weight can ruin your life pretty easily. If you won't even eat butter on Christmas or let your kids put white flour in a Father's Day cake, I don't think you are living life to the fullest. Life is too short for …

In other news...

River Tavern and Sol LeWitt House, Chester, CT

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Every year at the museum where I work we take the interns on a field trip. Last year we went to Boston. This year we went down to Chester, CT to see Sol LeWitt's house, studio, and warehouse. We also had a fabulous lunch.


LeWitt is great. I loved an exhibit of his work I saw on the roof garden at the Met in NYC in 2005. I loved the one at the Wadsworth Atheneum. I even made LeWitt cookies which depicted the one we have at my work. And I am sure we all love the installation that we be at MassMoca through 2033. He has a way of cheering up dreary spaces and making you think about the ways lines and shapes connect. His pieces make me feel inspired, like a deep breath of cold, fresh air.  It was really a great experience. We arrived at his house, and saw that he has a variety of very interesting outdoor sculpture around the grounds of a regular looking colonial style house in a normal looking neighborhood. Then we went inside. Every room was painted a different bright color on the wall.…

Dogsitting and Cucumber Salad

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I'm still out dogsitting in North Adams, MA. My coworker went to Alaska, and I'm here with Chance and Dakota, Chesapeake Retrievers.



Usually I make fun of mixes, cookbooks, and a whole philosophy of food that is different than mine. This time I am doing more exploring, maybe since it is summer. I basically cleaned out my freezer and brought a whole bunch of veggie burgers and zucchini pancakes I made a while ago so that makes up for the fact that the kitchen is under equipped. There's also a garden. I picked a bunch of stuff from the garden like my coworker told me to do.


Everything just keeps coming and coming. I bought some white distilled vinegar, and then tried to make a cucumber salad based on the seasonings they have around here. You may remember my previous experimenting with cucumber salads.


They don't have a lot of basic seasonings here, but they do have grilling seasonings. The Montreal Chicken seasoning from McCormick seems pretty versatile and tasty. It ha…