Well, dinner with the Williams and Rudy Maxa and his lovely girlfriend Ana Scofield was as fabulous as I had hoped – braised lamb shank, roasted beets and potatoes, several different interesting and delicious wines including an oaky (but not too oaky, to me, because I hate over-oaky wines) Sauvignon Blanc and an Australian Chardonnay for openers, and four lovely Italian reds AND a killer port with mild, creamy blue cheese for dessert. I love cheese for dessert…mmmmm… Thank you to Stu and Debbie for another incredible dinner and for introducing us to Rudy and Ana, who are a blast (Rudy’s website is www.rudymaxa.com).
Tonight, Sunday, I cooked, because we usually have my sister Stacey for dinner on Sundays. Stacey and her baby-to-be, due in March, currently known as “Baby Boom-Boom,” an apt name, because he is a squirm-birm, moving all over the place (as much as possible, anyhow, in Stacey’s tight tummy)! I decided I was hungry for a good, spicy, tender, slow-cooked pork roast, so that’s what we had. I rubbed it with cumin, chipotle chili powder, salt and pepper, browned it, then braised it with a generous amount of chopped onion and garlic for the better part of three hours. I also combined cooked diced potatoes with sauteed mushrooms, onion, pasilla peppers, and garlic, tossed it all with jack cheese, and warmed it in the oven until the cheese melted. We ate both fillings – the pork, pulled into bite-size pieces and moistened with the delicious, spicy braising liquid, and the potato cheese filling – in home-made sopas, fat little tortillas I made with masa harina and baked on a hot pan then fried in a bit of oil right before we ate. With diced avocado, crumbled queso fresco, and Frontera Grill tomatillo salsa. We had Susie’s coconut cake for dessert. Again, NOT moderate, but oh so good. It was a delicious and (over) indulgent meal. Sigh. It could have been moderate and quite healthy if 1) I hadn’t fried the sopas, 2) I hadn’t eaten so damn much of all of it, and 3) I had stopped when I was full (as in, I didn’t need the piece of cake, as yummy as it was). It’s a process I haven’t mastered…
Tomorrow – some exercise! One can’t be a moderate epicurean without exercise! Which I actually do enjoy, especially outside. Walking is easy and beautiful here in the Twin Cities, many picture-perfect walking paths and pretty neighborhoods, including my own. I’m lucky that way. My perfect day: sleep until 8 a.m., enjoy a rich cup of coffee (decaf, I had to give up caffeine in order to sleep at night), walk for an hour outside, come home to a nice hot shower (or bath!) fragrant with Molton Brown bath products, hit my lovely Byerly’s grocery store for supplies, come home, clean up the house, light some candles, turn on some music, pour myself a glass of wine, and cook an amazing dinner for my family – and myself! I have those days more often than I deserve. Hasn’t always been that way, so I know how to cherish and savor my lucky days. Today was one of those days. Didn’t pull off the walk, or bath, but did have a nice day with my family and sister and it was great.
So, tomorrow Nathan’s back to school, and Nathan’s mom is back to some semblance of a normal – moderate – routine. The holidays, including my birthday, are officially over!
Outstanding blog. As someone who knows you well, it captures you in a very accurate and cool way.
Fantastic blog! I know I'll be reading it whenever I can. The moderation theme is totally appropriate and actually a hot topic. Who among us can actually know moderation on a daily basis? It's a constant battle and one that I, too, am intimately familiar. Entitlement seeps through our pores - only because we are human. The more we experience, the more we want to experience. Hats off to you for touching on such a tough subject - there aren't a ga-zillion physically unfit, unhealthy Americans out there because we are experts in moderation!