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Archive for the ‘Miscellaneous’ Category

Update:

  • I have a new, working camera.
  • I just got back from Paris (literally. I’m sitting in the airport. I’ve been “traveling” for 16+ hours right now)
  • All I did was walk around museums and eat for a week (not at the same time).
  • Amanda Palmer is amazing.
  • Spring semester starts tomorrow.
  • I feel sick from this milkshake because I pass the time in airports by eating. Oops.
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It’s the end of fall semester, junior year. What does that mean? It means people are going abroad and this is going to be the last time I see many of them before we are seniors! It is tres, tres sad. We girls decided to have a nice dinner together before everyone dispersed. My initial email said “Make something! It doesn’t matter what just claim it quickly before someone else does”.

Well, due to that little comment we had QUITE the variety of food. And no good pictures because my camera was broken. Here’s what I made though:

Me with Tomato-Mozarella PokeBalls

Tomato-mozarella skewers! We took vine-ripened cherry tomatoes, the little balls of mozarella, cut each one in half and put them together to make one whole sphere. Sarah thought they looked like the PokeBalls in Pokemon. We wrapped a thin slice of basil around them and skewered ’em. I made a simple balsamic reduction to dip them in.

I also made another appetizer on a whim: Dates with Goat Cheese Wrapped in Prosciutto. I saw it on the homepage of epicurious before I went to the store and I was like !!!. If I had to pick my top 10 favorite foods those three things would all be there. Here’s where I found them: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Dates-with-Goat-Cheese-Wrapped-in-Prosciutto-241134 . Pier, who was one of the many people to happen upon our dinner, described them as “An excellent and surprising combination of flavors. The basil is a perfect buffer from the prosciutto to the date.” Well, whatever you say, Pier. They were EXCELLENT, flavorful, and easy to make (only 4 ingredients!). I was later reading the epicurious comments and someone mentioned using walnuts in them. I think the extra crunch would be a great addition. Unfortunately only one horrible picture of them was taken.

Kelsey made spinach-artichoke dip. Kelsey needs..hm…some extra supervision when cooking. She has a bad habit of reading measurements wrong (Which she did even with me there next to her. We just ended up doubling the recipe.). We used the spinach-artichoke dip recipe from Closet Cooking. We did not leave enough time for it to bake to that nice golden crust on top but it was good all the same. I think I would have been content with a simpler version still.

We just doubled the recipe...

Kelsey making dip, messing up dip, then fixing it.

Laurel made a salad with spinach and mixed baby greens, pine nuts, goat cheese, cranberry’s and Brianna’s Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing. Laurel also brought along the music… A couple weeks ago Laurel went to the SIM-Mamajamas a capella concert and bought a raffle ticket for $1. It seems she was the only person to do so because she won a song from SIM (Stuck In the Middle – one of our boys a capella groups) whenever she wanted. Well we thought our dinner would be the perfect time. And they sung three songs. “A dollar well spent?” we asked her. “Definitely! Three songs? That’s better than iTunes!” she replied.

Our own personal performance. Definitely better than iTunes.

Our own personal performance. Definitely better than iTunes.

Sarah made pasta with pesto. Wendy made something wonderful with a spanish name I don’t remember, but it was pretty much deconstructed pot roast; Shredded beef with chopped carrots, potatoes, and onions. Jenny made her “yummy grape thing“, which was essentially grapes with cream cheese icing. Claire made a caramel turtle cake. Halley made this delicious beverage made out of mixed berry sherbet and 7up.

We ate off of frisbees (because that’s how we do in Brooker…) and it was lovely and delicious.

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This weekend, under the orders of my aunt, I have made:

  • chocolate chip cookies (interesting crumbly ones made with shortening and no butter)
  • pumpkin pie (with doubled spices)
  • creme brulee
  • another pumpkin pie
  • a birthday cake for Dinah’s 8th birthday

And the best part? My camera broke a couple weeks ago. (I dropped it…). Expect no more pictures till after Hannukah.

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I’ve arrived at what will be my home for the summer. I have an internship doing microbiology stuff on the beach in Florida. It’s nice here. Our housing was provided – we have a little tiny dorm for us 8 interns. We are in charge of our own food, however.

“Great!” you might say, having seen/heard my laments about not having my own kitchen.

Oh, do I know better now. I’ve been here a week (although I went home this past weekend). After about 3 days it felt like I’d already been here forever. And I had been so healthy! Salads once a day, no awful snacky foods…I even went running on the beach three days in a row! Shopping for myself has been really good for me so far.

But then days 4 and 5 hit. They were long days. Three days of working your brain, trying to remember all you can about your Cell Biology and Genetics class, processing the process of PCRs and the use of double-stranded RNA to silence a gene really wears on a person! Not to mention the running when I haven’t exactly been running regularly… It’s so very difficult to work up the energy to cook something for yourself when it’s just you and you might as well snack various things from the fridge. They’re all relatively healthy things, right?

I have no real repertoire of recipes to rely on. I think that is my real problem. There aren’t a whole bunch of dinner options/ideas floating around in my brain to pull on. I tossed together pretty much the same salad once a day (but it’s a good salad!). I made my dad’s salmon patties, which were tasty and I ate the leftovers the next night. I’ve had a lot of sandwiches (but I love sandwiches!). And some mac & cheese (not exciting, exactly).

This is definitely going to be a challenge and a learning experience for me.

One last thing: I need to go to the store SO often, it seems! I always forget something or run out of something in 2 days. Starting from nothing, with no reserves, is really annoying. In fact, I need to go to the store right now.

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At Middlebury we have the commons system. Recently it has been updated to the 4/2 system, which means that although you are associated with your commons for all 4 years, you only [are required to] live in it for 2 years. In order to give the sophomore year more meaning in the commons, Ross Commons has had a Sophomore Dinner Theater series. So we go over to our faculty heads’ house and have dinner, then go to a play.

I sure picked a good week to go, since last week our dinner was catered by Baba, owner of Baba’s Cafe in Middlebury Market. It was pretty much amazing. I wish I’d had my camera! Here’s some of the things we ate:

-Appetizer: Bruschetta with fresh tomatoes, one with a pesto sauce

-A Mediterranean dish involving marinated yogurt, baked pita chips, chick peas, onions, and garnishy things all mixed together.

-A soupy chicken dish to be eaten over rice or noodles (I forget what this was called…)

-Speaking of noodles, there was bow-tie pasta with olives and sundried tomatoes, among other things.

-Leg of lamb. Unbelievably fall-off-the-bone tender! It had heads of garlic and onions and baby potatoes around it. I cannot even describe how amazing this was.

-Pork tenderloin… I don’t remember much about this. I was swooning over the lamb still while eating it.

-Dessert: Tiramisu. REAL tiramisu. I dream of real tiramisu like this. I think it could have used a little more coffee on it, but not much.

I was completely and totally stuffed. So after that we went to see the faculty-directed production of Jumpers by Tom Stoppard. It starred a couple of the theater professors, actually. Alex Draper played the main character. Admittedly, I was confused for a lot of the play. So it was helpful to have Steve Abbott there to explain during intermission. I think I must be on the visual-learner side, because it’s sometimes hard for me to follow things that are only auditory. So when George Moore goes on fast-talking philosophical rants, I get fixated on trying to process some of it while he continues and I miss some of the (in)significance of it. Also, I was very full and could have used a nice warm blanket and a nap.

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