Hello dearest, up in the aerie, and have already shut the flame from under the basmati, so that I don't get so caught up in posting that I forget all about it and it burns. Burnt rice isn't delicious at all, the acrid flavor permeates through the white, even as I've scraped away all the black bits, and then there's the loathsome chore of charred pot to scrub -- ah! so none of that, this evening. No, things are smooth sailing for an Indian-style meal, chicken seasoned with garam masala, yogurt, and cilantro. I was super double if not triple productive this morning. I had a whole chicken cut-up, marinaded the dark meat pieces in the spice mixture for dinner, and roasted the breasts with a bit of tarragon, sea salt, and fresh pepper, to have with salad for lunch. And I made croutons, from half a baguette that we hadn't quite gotten around to eating -- just as well! It was a boring supermarket loaf, but cut into small pieces, spread on a baking sheet and tossed with some EVOO, sea salt, pepper, minced garlic, and dried basil -- heavenly topping for a salad - probably tomorrow's lunch, with that second chicken breast.
I'm just typing here, not much to report. Read a few more pages of my book -- oh, I love Linzer cookies too, and wish I could have visited Cambridge, MA many years sooner -- to experience the "Window Shop" restaurant & bakery, with its Austrian delicacies -- than I did, my first time there being about 1977. I do remember, from that time, a Germanic restaurant that had over 100 (or even more) bottled beers from around the world. I loved spending time, when in my spare time in college I could take the T or a bus there, in Harvard Square, which truly did seem like the 'hub of the universe' to me. I loved hanging out smoking, reading, drinking cappuccinos at the Algiers Cafe, a cozy subterranean hangout with colorful mosaic tiles & mirrored surfaces, and tiny wobbly wooden tables. Last time I was in Cambridge -- several years ago now -- the cafe was still there, I hope it still is. Another favorite place for me to go, back at that time, was Grendel's Den, a fresh-food sort of restaurant, with an extravagant, delicious salad bar -- which seems so old-hat now, maybe, but for me, to sample chick peas, and sprouts, and even varieties of lettuce other than iceberg, plus blue cheese, and olives, and raisins - what, raisins on a salad? - and a myriad of other goodies -- nuts, seeds, feta, yogurt, and all the rest -- oh I loved it! I'd grab a glass plate and load up, and I think - though you paid by the plate - you were allowed seconds - or maybe I just, with my student's budget, loaded up my single plate in a food pyramid of sorts. It was great fun. I loved going there. It was so festive, such a colorful crowd, and they played wonderful music, a lot of Ella Fitzgerald -- also so very new to me at that time!
Ah, but alas Grendel's is no more, not for a number of years now -- that loss, I did feel acutely, when I visited Cambridge and discovered that it had been replaced by -- well, I'm not even sure what now, I don't recall, and no matter, because it may have been replaced yet again. And goodness knows, the building itself - a capacious old clapboard sided rambling inn of a place, has, with its deep front yard, in prime real estate, been replaced.
So -- still, I love Linzer cookies, the combination of walnuts, cinnamon, and raspberry jam. And I was very excited when, a few times, I've made my own -- and there is something very distinctive, and delicious, about that combination of flavors -- oh, and plus the confection is dusted with confectioners sugar, of course.
And that's it for now, darling, it's such a peaceful hour, very gray out, after quite a bit of rain, very welcome. I look forward to dinner, and tomorrow I have a project set out for myself - taking up the hems of a couple of summer dresses I recently bought, which I really like -- but realized, and it became crystallized to me as I was doing my workout to a Dr. Oz that if the hem is much below the knee it can be frumpy -- and indeed, I wore one of the dresses the other night, and I did inexplicably, couldn't figure it out, feel a bit frumpy. Well now I know why, and I'm equipped with tape measure, and straight pins, and experimentation with finding just the right length, at the knee...
and I look forward very much to a morning coffee date I will have in a couple of days -- no, not a first coffee date -- a second! Isn't that exciting? He brilliantly suggested an early morning walk, do I know of a park, he'll bring the coffee, and yes!- I know just the place...