Another week – another roundup!
The biggest thing to report on – my progress in cooking. Believe it or not my commitment to learning how to cook has lasted longer than two days. It has in fact lasted one whole week and counting. Tonight will be my first night of take out since last Thursday. That, my friends, is nothing short of a miracle. And sheer will power to spend less money and eat healthier.
Once Erik came home from Atlanta on Tuesday I made him the pasta dishes I had “perfected” over the past few days and he was quite pleased with both and they have been approved as regular things to have in rotation for dinner chez nous. I also tried my hand at scallops (!) and a vegetable quinoa salad and, I must say, for my first try and cooking scallops - or any fish really – I managed to do quite well! And by that I mean they didn’t taste fishy (thank you copious amounts of butter), they weren’t overcooked, and they weren’t raw in the middle when I finally took them out of the pan. Yay. Me.
Here’s proof I actually made them – Scallops with Quinoa Vegetable Salad:
healthy, delicious, and I MADE IT!
The other new dish I made this week was a team effort with Erik. I took on a warm corn and potato salad which demanded quite a bit of prep and Erik cooked the steaks. Voici my prep work:
prep work done by me (cocktail included of course)
The salad recipe (taken from Food and Wine) required quite a bit of chopping and serious attention paid while it cooked on the stove. Look how pretty:
the warm corn and potato salad (minus a few ingredients that are added after it’s all cooked)
This was the most detailed recipe I’ve taken on yet so it was nice to have Erik to answer all my stupid questions and keep all the timing right. It turned out quite nicely and we were very proud of our ability to cook together as it has never been done before. EVER. Here is the finished dinner:
Not the best pic given the lighting but it was delicious!
Not too shabby, huh? Pair that dish with La Crema pinot noir and I can promise that all will enjoy!
I have to say, I’m still in a state of shock that I’ve managed to keep up my motivation but it feels good. We’re doing take out tonight due to work schedules and general convenience but tomorrow we’re taking on pepper steak! That’s right. And not just any pepper steak, supposedly the best pepper steak recipe in Paris. When I was living in Paris last summer, I heard over and over about how I had to go get the steak frites at Bistro Paul Bert. Somehow I never managed to get a reservation or wander in on an evening when there was actually an available table, so sadly I never got to taste it. But, thankfully, Paris Kitchen posted the recipe and we’re going to try it out tomorrow night….this one might be more Erik than me cooking but I’ll still be helping as much as possible. So stay tuned for an update on how that all goes. This is what it’s supposed to look like:
Photo from The Paris Kitchen
But we’ll see how we do…
In other news, our landlord hasn’t sent us our new lease yet. I’d be worried if I didn’t already know him and his level of laziness, but I still want a piece of paper confirming that we have that garden apartment.
In family news, my sister and brother in law who have been living in Prague the past few years are finally coming home to the States! They’ll be moving to Atlanta where Erik already has family so we are quite excited. Thanksgiving this year should be even more fun than usual!
In sort of work related news, I’m considering getting an M.A. in International Relations from NYU. There’s a possibility that with Erik’s benefits I can get the degree for free, and if that’s the case, I think it would be worth applying and seeing if I can get in for the Fall of 2013. The majority of the classes are available after 6pm so it wouldn’t cause any issues with work, and it certainly wouldn’t hurt to have that degree given my interest in pursuing a career in diplomacy. An M.A. in French Studies and an M.A. in International Relations would certainly only sell me more when applying for any kind of job focused on French and American international relations…so why not? I mean, if it’s free, it’s really too good an opportunity to turn down…non? Regardless, I am looking into it and seeing what can be accomplished. Fingers crossed I can get the answers I want after talking to the folks at NYU.
In truly random news, I found a Weber grill on the sidewalk being thrown away by a neighbor who apparently didn’t need it anymore. So we grabbed it for our new backyard. It’s now living in our kitchen area jammed in with everything else till we move downstairs.
Also random but awesome, I am officially going back to water aerobics this weekend – yay for old lady exercise!
And if we’re talking about the weekend, my plans also include going to Chelsea Triangle French Market to see what kind of French ingredients they have to offer, and if we can finally find French bread on par with our old Berkeley bakery La Farine. I’m also going so I can write about it for my new column for an online Francophile magazine called Ma Vie Francaise (or My French Life). I’ll be contributing one column per month on the best of France and all things French in NYC. Should be fun and it will keep me in touch and in the loop on all things French in the city. Most importantly, it will give me an excuse to go eat French food so I can tell everyone where they should be eating. A girl’s gotta have priorities.
Whew! So there you have it – another week of surviving New York City and all its craziness.