Hanging out at the Dairy

Hanging out at the Dairy
Darci(far left) & the Wrights at the Creamery

Sunday, January 29, 2012

"These are a few of my favorite things..."

Our dachshunds soaking up the heat from our fireplace

So I'm sitting in my favorite armchair again on day 7 of our Sequim Snow Week and feeling rather nostalgic. The wind is howling and gusting, it's raining sideways, the snow is slowly melting and I'm sipping my morning coffee with husband, who's reading book #5 or 6? of the week. Life is cozy in front of our fire and I'm feeling grateful as the weather gusts outside and I'm flipping through tons of pics on my laptop. 

I don't really have a point with this post other than reflection of great moments and memories. The types of events that bring a smile to my face and maybe yours too. I'll try to group them to make more sense to you...and yes, there is food involved! HELLOOOO! This is a MAJOR food geek you're dealing with here who also loves to travel a bit, hang with family and friends.  Hopefully you will find these snippets entertaining and not too much of an "over-share" on my part. Funny how it starts off with warmer weather...hmmm?!!

Son Alan, friends Harrison and Drew on a jet ski on the Columbia River
Crescent Bar, WA Summer 2011 was a HUGE highlight of 2011 for son Alan and I. Unfortunately, husband was home working so we knuckled through the 85+ degree sunshine, lots of pool time, me reading book #2 of the Dragon Tattoo series, and copious amounts of local Mexican food! I rendevouzed with 3 Moms/good friends and their kids.  Crescent Bar is located in the more seasonal eastern (hence warmer in summer) part of Washington state, close to Wenatchee. Heat, gloriously warm sunshine, seems even sweeter now that the weather is polar opposite. Crescent Bar is now one of my favorite places on earth!

Our local coffee shop also served ice cream-YEA US!

Fresh tortillas and Mexican Creme from the Quincy store

This was me and son Alan on paddle boards. I was working off the Mexican food...

One of my ALL TIME fav pics! Alan and Harrison looking out at the Columbia River

Alan, Yana & Alicia's cannonball contest-COWABUNGA!

Me reading poolside while Alan & Alisha dive for objects in the pool at sunset
Beef Huarache lunch from a Taco truck in Ellensburg, WA

Dining alfresco on my condo patio w/shredded beef tamale, Mexican creme, fresh salsa & vino

We found a Mexican grocery in the small agricultural town of Quincy, WA, on our way to Crescent Bar. Let's just say that the owners and patrons must have found me and my friends "curious" at least...we bought pints of fresh salsa, Mexican creme, fresh tortillas and tortilla chips at LEAST 5 times in our 7 day stay.  We were embracing the "EAT LOCAL" mantra for sure!

Afternoon sun through the Russian Sage
Vashon Island, WA-Summer 2011 again. My friend Dawn's wedding to Jeremy. Sun, friends, family, FANTASTIC food by Herban Feast Catering, beautiful setting, a rare and lovely date with my husband.

Husband, me, bride/good friend/bride Dawn, Dawn's sister Caroline

Toasting the Bride and Groom

The band announces the wedding is beginning...

The array of delectable appetizers

pickled red onions on bruscetts with slice of beef tenderloin

Dinner; fresh, wonderful, seasonal

Leaving the tranquil island of Vashon

Fresh crab-ANYWHERE, ANYTIME! I didn't think I even liked crab until our family friend Ed, dropped some crab pots when we were staying at his Port Hadlock home for the weekend. TOTAL game changer experience! I do like crab, when it's fresh...frozen, not so much at all.

My Ulin family getting ready for dinner!

Son Alan and Mom-in-law Lin out dropping crab pots (Father-in-law is captain & photographer)

My fresh crab cakes with Panko crust

Simple fixings; spicy cocktail sauce, limes, lemons and melted butter
Something else I learned about fresh crab; it doesn't have to be daunting to serve your guests! Short story; we got several fresh cooked crab from a neighbor (LOVE it!) and husband invited some friends over to enjoy them. Wife is major foodie too. I FREAKED OUT! I'd never served fresh crab before and thought you needed individual crab crackers, picks and other specific tools. I cried and ranted to my husband for inviting them over for crab but upon arrival, foodie wife simply asked "if we had some hammers around the house?" We did. We got out cutting boards for each of us, bowls for meat and bowls for shells and the feast was on! It was kind of cathartic to pound away and extract the sweet meat together. 

Dungeness Crab meat

Silly me! Now I have extra crackers and hammers out when we have fresh crab and save the tears for other "crisis' ".

Rock Crab claw meat
Fresh Berries-ANYTIME, ANYWHERE! The Pacific Northwest is a mecca for all wonderful berries; wild blackberries, Marion berries, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, huckleberries, cranberries, Cascade berries, and many more.

Fresh local strawberries from Sequim

Dirty Vegas Cocktail; fresh strawberry juice, white balsamic vinegar, sugar, lemon & vodka

Strawberry turnover

Cascade berries from our family farm in Forks, WA

Cascade Berry Crisp

Jewels for the picking

These are a few of my many favorite things.  Right now, they're curiously all related more toward the warmer, summer months.  Don't get me wrong, I try my best to embrace all times of year and to eat seasonally. However, I feel the most vital, energetic and enthusiastic about summer months. Well, I like Spring and Fall too...just not winter so much. The claustrophobic nature of grey days having me lusting after sunnier, warmer days and the bounty of offerings they bring right now. 

Here's to naming your favorite things my friends. It's fun to know and acknowledge what makes you happy so you can repeat them more often! Sometimes fresh isn't always available but frozen can make do in a pinch, it's about creating creating memories and then bringing them to your present day lives. 

"It's all good!" as my family likes to say.
Chow for now my friends.

No comments: