So days 3 & 4 have been filled with more delicious food, but I've been so busy that I ran out of time to take more pictures and update sooner. I also bent the menu significantly on Tuesday and fell off the wagon a little this evening when I finished some writing that had been driving me nuts for the past few weeks and couldn't resist a celebratory beer on a balmy summer evening. So sue me.
Still, there are been highlights I should tell you about! Day 3 was Japanese theme day with a vegan Japanese dinner of Koya-Dofu and Vegetables that looked the epitome of elegant. And I had such good intentions: I went to two Asian grocery stores looking for kombu and burdock root, but had no luck. With the clock ticking on my work deadline I decided that a trip to Fujimart on the other side of town to buy a bit of dried seaweed was going overboard, so I decided to cut my losses and team the leftover (totally delicious) edamame hummus from earlier in the day with fresh slices of cucumber and carrot, a bowl of steamed brown rice with some furikake I had in the cupboard and a miso soup. It was certainly not as pretty, but was clean and light and made me happy enough. Also, edamame "hummus"! Annoying name, awesome stuff. After starting the day with the most delicious leftovers ever - warm and nutty cinnamon quinoa for breakfast and those-beans-I-can't-stop-talking-about-because-they're-so-freaking-ace - I think I had a pretty good day of eats!
Day 4 began with a gorgeous almond-banana smoothie. Banana smoothies always irk me for some reason, but almond milk seems to make everything taste lovely. I skipped the tablespoon of brown sugar as my super-ripe banana was plenty sweet enough and I swapped the pear for a perfectly ripe summer peach. Lunch was meant to be leftover Koya-Dofu, but I ate the last of the magic beans with a green salad and citrus-shallot vinaigrette. The evening meal had a certain formal quality that made my dinner guest and I giggle, but we enjoyed it all the same. On the menu was pan-roasted chicken with persillade, endive, apples and grapes and roasted sweet potatoes. Look, is it just me, or are free-range chicken breasts with skin attached hard to come by here in OZ? Again, no luck. As chicken breast is not my favourite thing anyway, I swapped it out for a couple of super-fancy Otway free range pork cutlets, done quickly in the pan, doused with a grainy mustard, honey and fresh thyme concoction and finished in the oven. The endive became witlof and was caramelised in my "Le Creuset" (ie not a real Le Creuset) with chunks of apple, small clusters of green grapes and a few springs of rosemary. This was pork chops and apple sauce taken to the next level! All this was served alongside a pile of roasted sweet potato slices and more green salad. Whoa! We were full.
And I've got more awesomeness on the way... But let's take this two days at a time.
Also: on New Year's Day I went to the cinema and saw Sofia Coppola's latest film Somewhere (2010). That there's a shot of Elle Fanning at the bottom of a swimming pool having a tea party with her Dad. Leaving the cinema, my friend Yardena and I shrugged and talked about Marc Jacobs, the size of the rooms at Chateau Marmont and the fact that Stephen Dorff still looks pretty, pretty good. But something about that film has got under my skin. It keeps coming to me the moment I stop concentrating on what I'm doing, and this evening on the train I found myself listening to the last Phoenix album - that one I didn't think much of. It's contrived and impossibly hip, but there is something about the way bodies exist in space in that film - so graceful, clean and sad - that has done something to me. Also, there's a nice scene with spaghetti.