swimming in sauce

 During the heart of tomato season last year, I experimented with a lot of different options. Put them in a Tomato Corn Galette, served them under some roasted pesto crusted cod, in a tomato pancetta quiche, as an easy simple summer sauce, or just plain ole roasted on some naan "pizza". It was pretty great to push myself a little to try different things. 

This year? sauce. sauce. and more sauce.

To be specific, I think I've made 5 different batches... and I think I've finally stumbled upon the best option. It also happens to be the easiest.
- Batch 1: This variety from last year - mainly tomatoes, onion and garlic.
- Batch 2: Added in peppers
- Batch 3: Roasted tomatoes and garlic 
- Batch 4: Roasted tomatoes, garlic, and sprinkles of marjoram
- Batch 5: Roasted tomatoes, garlic, and onion

I feel a little bit like a fool for not getting into canning in previous years - if for nothing else than to reduce food waste from the garden. I can't even imagine how many tomatoes turned into compost (or chicken food) in the past few years.... and now will be sauce for the winter months. I'm pretty pumped about it.

poison ivy & dilly beans

Again this summer has been light on the writing. It's not that I haven't had things to write about, I just have been trying to not sit in front of the computer. Also ... life has been full. 

But what I want to document that I'm 31 and have poison ivy. And, that I've had it for 3 weeks.

Week 1 was easy ... in part because I thought it was spider bites. I had just been on a easy hike and chalked it up to that. Spiders. I hate them but it made sense. At the end of week 1, I was like "wait, this shit itches". Week 2 was annoying but honestly, I didn't really think much about it. Week 3? A seriously different story.

the longest gap... and a new recipe

This is officially the longest I've gone without writing.

It sounds very obnoxious to say that I was busy, but I was. And still am. I've actually recently decided to avoid the word "busy" because it feels a little obnoxious to describe things like that at times. So, I'll just say that life has been "full".

In the past 30+ days, I've done a fair amount of living:

  • I went to Miami and had a lizard in my rental car.
  • I worked 12 straight days and wasn't really mad about it. That happens when you like your job I guess.
  • I put a toasted marshmallow on strawberry shortcake. It was a phenomenal decision.
  • I made Roman shades for my living room... and kitchen. I also bought 3 new rugs for my apartment... including a hide rug. 
  • My Tumbling Tom tomato plant started to product baby tomatoes.
  • My sister is going to be moving back into the North End... and my direct neighborhood.
  • I lovingly refinished two side tables and gave them a new life in my bedroom.
  • I went blueberry picking three times.
  • I finally went to the Boston Harbor Islands... and it was moderately worth it.
  • My baby brother got his braces off!
  • I threw out 3 more moving boxes and found my Billy Curly jersey. 

I also turned 31 and made about 35 batches of pesto from my fire escape garden.

summer salads (pasta & otherwise)

One of the best things about good weather is quick summer salads .... that consist of less lettuce and more of pasta and everything else that is fresh. I've been doing a lot of cold pasta salads recently and really loving the results. To be clear, I am pretty much winging it every time ... so I feel pretty lucky. Summer salads are perfect for Sunday dinner on the fire escape. I'm pretty much in love with my little Sunday tradition.

let there be peonies

I'm not really a perfume person, but if there is one that consists of peonies and salt water I would buy it.

My parents have had these peonies for 20+ years. I used to remember coming home from school and finding neighborhood ladies snipping blooms off when they thought nobody would catch them. Silly ladies. Either way, the peonies bloomed this past weekend... and it timed perfectly with Father's Day weekend. 

I drove back to Boston today with cupholders filled with peonies ... and that seems perfect. My brother gave me some as a thank you for taking him to Dick's Sporting Goods. Super cute. They smell phenomenal and look even better. I cut the second bunch of peonies from the garden and I intend on taking them to work. I think they'll look great next to my dueling monitors and pile of Wheat Thin crumbs.

desert + mountain + ocean

My past two recent trips to LA have been pretty much all business. So, it was awesome this time around to do a little bit of exploring and relaxing. 

I'm a sucker for a view - so it naturally led to a trip to Joshua Tree National Park. As part of that I spent the night in a pool side casita (apparently that's what they call it). I went for a little bit of a night swim. I ate some guacamole under a big flowering tree. It was pretty great. 

my jaunt to the desert

Current conundrum = how many pictures of palm trees is too many? What if they all are of different palm trees... but that palm trees all look the same? Does it help that one of them is at night with the moon in the back? I think so.

Regardless, I'm not going to stop taking them except for when I get on a plane to go back to Boston tomorrow. Then, I'll stop taking pictures of palm trees and instead start snapping shots from Row 28 of America. God Bless America - even all those states in the middle.

I got to LA on Saturday mid-morning and practically raced to the desert. That was my plan and I achieved it ... the thing is, the desert was empty and I didn't need to race a soul. I spent about 3 hrs in Joshua Tree National Park ... and saw about a dozen cars. After that, I proceeded to kick it in the Palm Springs vicinity for the night before doing some Sunday adventuring. 
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