Monday, January 30, 2012

Rick Blaine Makes Pimpin' Look Easy

So, this movie is about Nazis? I had no idea. Adrien adds... "Also, it's in Africa!" Me: "Did you just Google to make sure Morocco is in Africa?" Adrien: "Yeah, I wanted to make sure"

Here's a quick breakdown of my favorite parts. Keep in mind that this is my real life experience watching Casablanca for the first time, and has very little to do with the movie itself.

5 minutes in... Me: "I don't get this shit." Adrien: "Me either... Are they speaking English??"  Me: "Not sure. Sometimes they are..."

Scanning thru the bar for the first time... Me: "Ain't that some shit? We're in Africa, and the first black guy we see is some American lookin black guy playin piano?" Adrien: "Africa?? I thought this was in Morocco... Isn't Morocco in Europe?"

Rick asks Sam to play the song, and Sam looks at him all crazy-eyed... Me: "You know what Sam was thinkin right there, right?" Adrien: "This bitch...?" Me: "No... He's thinkin... White people play different..."

When Ilsa pulls a gun on Rick then confesses her love for him... Adrien: "This bitch is seesaw!! One line is this way, then the next line is the exact opposite!" Rick: "Here's lookin at you, kid." Adrien:  *buries head in pillow*

Ilsa is still confessing her love for Rick... Rick: "I wouldn't bring up Paris if I were you, it's poor salesmanship." Adrien: *laughs* "This guy is a badass. He's the shit."

End of movie... Adrien: "I never got to hear him say Play it again, Sam." Me: "We must have missed it..." *replays part of movie where we may have missed it... line does not occur* Google: "'Play it again, Sam' is originally a misquotation from the 1942 film Casablanca." Adrien: "Well that's a disappointment. That was the one line I was looking forward to the most!!"

Overall, pretty legit. Not sure about it being the best movie of all time, but enjoyable with some laughs. Old people are funny... I always knew it! They were even funny before they were old. Chew on that. Final count of famous lines (that Adrien and I knew) = 4.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Miso Hungry!

Last Thursday's foodventure featured 2 items I've never worked with before... MISO and QUINOA. Pretty exciting! I've had a package of quinoa in the pantry for a while and never really bit the bullet and gave it a shot (see what I did there?). The stuff is pretty awesome though! Good texture, got some good flavors going, and it seems to be a pretty versatile little grain. Miso is weird... I learned a couple of interesting facts: (1) Sprouts only offers brown miso. Bobby wanted yellow. This got complicated, but after doing a good deal of research, the difference still eludes me. I guess that isn't really learning anything... (2) Once opened, the stuff will last in the fridge for about a year once opened... kinda creepy, no?

Miso Orange Glazed Salmon (adapted from Bobby Flay's Grill It!)
  • 2 salmon fillets, about 8-oz each
  • 1 c freshly squeezed OJ (about 4 oranges), plus the zest from one
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 1/4 c miso paste (see intro)
  • 1/2 T soy sauce
  • 1/2 T rice wine vinegar
  • 1/4 c thinly sliced green onions 
1. Make yourself a cheese plate for snacking. Begin consumption immediately.

2. Make the glaze for the fish:  Mix up the OJ, zest, and brown sugar in a small saucepan, and boil it. Then simmer until reduced to 1/4 cup. Whisk in the miso and cook for 1 minute, then take it off the heat and whisk in the soy sauce and vinegar. Let it chill out. This is the perfect time to start the quinoa!

3. Coat the salmon with 1/2 the glaze and let it hang for 15 mins. By now you should be halfway done with your cheese plate.

4. Get the excess marinade off the salmon, season with S&P, and put it in a lightly oiled skillet... which shouldn't be too hot or you will burn it to a crispy crispness and be sad (I obviously didn't do this... as far as you know). Cook it over medium heat for, say, 4 minutes on the skin side, then a couple more on the other side, depending on how done you like it (I like medium, so like 2 more mins). Make sure to add the reserved marinade and baste the sucker as much as you can without seeming foolish.

5. Put it on a plate, put more of the miso stuff (it's good... you won't regret it), and throw on some green onions (don't skip... they are pretty AND make the flavors aweeesommee). You gotta scroll down to see the final product... I'm not gonna spoil it by showing you too early!!

Asiany Quinoa with Mushrooms (adapted from Quinoa with Asian Flavors)
  • 1 c quinoa
  • 2 c vegetable broth (use one you made, if you're awesome)
  • 2 T soy sauce
  • 1 T fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/3 c green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 lb crimini mushrooms, thinly sliced
1. Defrost your homemade broth. I know you have it.

2. Toast the quinoa in some EVOO for 3-4 minutes. Add the broth, soy sauce, garlic, and ginger. Reduce to a simmer and cover. Set the timer for 25 minutes.

3. When the timer says 15 mins left, add the sliced mushrooms, stir, and recover. Also, start step 5 for the salmon if you want to eat this all at the same time!

4. Once all the water is absorbed, you're almost done! Stir in the green onions, season with S&P, and serve er up!! Don't forget seconds.


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Board. Fell. On my HEAD.

Can you guess why both of these items were provided free of charge at last night's hh adventure?

At a popular restaurant/brewery near the San Diego office... A place I won't mention by name, but will say has a delectable ahi poke and is a spot I frequent with my friend/coworker Ono for hh... The unspeakable happened. If you read the title to this entry, you may have an idea. Actually, you may have the whole idea.

A Board. Fell. On my HEAD.

Yeah, a 1x4 happened to fall off the wall, and land smack dabby on the back of my head. I'm almost sure Ono planned this. Is there a better way to get yourself a blog mention than to be around by pure coincidence when disaster strikes? And then to tell the manager that "an apology isn't good enough. An apology doesn't make her not get hit in the head with a wooden plank" as I'm subtly escaping to the restroom to hide my 2-year-old-who-got-too-much-attention-when-something-bad-happened watery eyes. To be fair, does anything make me not get hit in the head with a wooden plank AFTER I'd been hit in the head with a wooden plank? I'm not sure... That seems to be a somewhat philosophical question, and this is neither the time nor the place (maybe in the "Comments" section?).

After the initial "I'm sorry for your inconvenience" interaction, the manager actually handled it quite well, offering ice (um, I'm not going to ice my head in public, thankyouverymuch), an ambulance (a formality, I'm sure, but dude...), comping our meal (better), a $50 gift card (now we're getting there), and a growler of beer (ok, I forgive you).

For those wondering about injury other than to my ego and careful eyeliner application: Ono assured me that my pupils were reactive and I seemed to have no more brain damage than when we'd arrived.

Monday, January 16, 2012

A Poem

Oh, smiley Riley, you're such a wonderful dog
Oh, smiley Riley, you never get lost in the fog
Oh, smiley Riley, you used to look like a log
Oh, smiley Riley, you might just show up in my blog

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Freeway Ponderings on My Favorite City

Because lists are fun, and I like fun, and I like San Diego, and San Diego is fun, here is a list of things that I like and I think are fun about San Diego.
  1. People cross the street to pet Riley
  2. My best friend Linnea lives here (boom, there's your mention!)
  3. The bums are friendly, and most of them wear Chargers gear
  4. Driving 163 S past the mall makes my ears pop
  5. There are wireless networks in my mom's building named "Virus Installer" and "BoosHound"
  6. (It at least feels like) There are more independent restaurants than chains
  7. Corgi meetups
  8. Meter maids ticketed a Car2Go vehicle outside my mom's building TWICE (if you don't know what Car2Go is, check out Little Brother's blog post on the subject... Starting From Scratch: Awesome, thy name is Car2Go)
  9. Today I wasn't sure whether this one guy was homeless or a gajillionaire in a sweatshirt
  10. Vons is a cool name for a grocery store
  11. Friday rush hour starts at 2pm
  12. Nobody dresses up to go to work unless they feel like it
  13. The freeway signs make sense (booooooooo Miami)
  14. There is an inordinate number of holistic pet shops, and I love everything they stand for even though it's completely ridiculous if you think about it
  15. You never hear "ugh... San Diego... I can't stand that place"... Everyone else loves this gosh dang city as much as I do!

Sunday, January 8, 2012


Friday night's foodventure was another glorious success! My only regrets are that I didn't photo-document the beauty and I didn't make enough to last a week. When I tried to steal a picture from somewhere else online and pass it off as my own, I couldn't find something that did it justice! The mushrooms make the butter and cream their bitch, spreading their deliciousness and earthy delights into the sauce and the pasta. Mixing different types of mushrooms is key here. It adds complexity as each mushroom contributes its own distinct flavor to build a truly amazing dish. In fact, I even bought oyster mushrooms, but they were rendered useless as soon as I got home from the store by the discovery of a tragic mold invasion. This recipe is truly a keeper... Adrien may have called it the best vegetarian meal he's ever had. Yeah... that happened!!

Pasta with Mushroom Cream Sauce
  • 1 ½ lbs mixed mushrooms (I used a combo of white, crimini, and shiitake), stemmed (save the stems for stock) and sliced
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ¼ c chopped parsley
  • 1 c heavy cream
  • 4 T butter
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb fettuccine
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 or more bottles of Chianti 
  1. In heavily salted water, cook the pasta 1 minute short of the package directions. Strain.
  2. Saute the shallots in olive oil over medium heat for about 3-4 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for another minute. Add the sliced mushrooms, salt them liberally, and crank the heat up to medium-high, cooking the mushrooms until they give up their juices and the juices cook off. Add the parsley, stir it all up, then add the butter, melt it, and add the cream. Cook over high heat until the liquid reduces by about half (this makes just enough sauce to coat the pasta…if you like it saucier, add more cream before reducing).
  3. Toss the cooked pasta with the sauce and cook it for a minute or so until the pasta is al dente.
  4. Serve it up, top the pasta with Parmesan cheese, pour the wine, and embrace the gluttony.
Amendment (01/16/12)... PICTURES! Made this again for my momma, and took some quick pix. Sorry for the poor quality. My phone kinda sucks.