Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Sundark and Riverlight

I woke up this morning and checked my email and realized that Patrick Wolf's latest album Sundark and Riverlight had been released!!

I immediately dropped down my 11.99 on iTunes, and burned myself a copy for my car. Literally, twenty minutes later, I was parked in a random parking lot, sobbing.

Patrick Wolf has that amazing ability to wrench all sorts of beautiful and painful emotions out of me- and I know I'm not the only one. I've been along for the ride since Wind in the Wires, and the first listen of a new album is always an emotional journey.

Sundark and Riverlight is a retrospective voyage through Patrick Wolf's diverse discography. It is stripped down, acoustic, and, as his voice has matured in the last 10 years (P Wolf is 29) some of the songs have changed key and taken on a more adult quality. His re-recordings of pieces from Wind in the Wires(2005), especially, sent chills up my spine.

Sundark and Riverlight is like seeing a picture slideshow of the great life events of a dear friend, and while I listen obsessively to this album, I'm looking forward to seeing what he comes up with next.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Camping Again!

This week I went camping again! This time we went to Hurricane Ridge. It really is a great time of year to go camping, because it is still warm enough, but kids are back in school, so the campgrounds are less crowded. It is usually a few retired couples in RVs and a few other young people. Perfect.

We camped down at the base of Hurricane Ridge, as our first attempt to drive up lead to my car making some pretty horrifying noises. At our campsite, a hare was nosing around, and let me take pictures of him.

We got up early and headed to Hurricane Ridge in the morning. Spectacular.

What a perfect trip!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Smørrebrød Party!

Do you know how to confuse the heck out of your friends? Ask them to bring toppings for Smørrebrød. Even when you explain that they're Danish-style open face sandwiches, you still get stares of incomprehension. But when everyone has assembled and your friends are starting at slab of dark rye bread holding a delectable pile of shrimp and cucmber...they'll come around.

Bon Appétit magazine recently published an article on Smørrebrød, and since I am a sucker for appetizer-like mix and match things, I had to try it. So I tacked it onto a picnic that I had already planned with a group of friend. Because the toppings are so easy to carry around, nobody had a huge burden, cost-wise or transportation-wise. As the host, I provided bread, drinks (water and iced tea), Shrimp and Cucumber Salad, and extra Horseradish Mayo. [note: I cheated, though, and used frozen shrimp.] As for other toppings, my suggestions (ripped from the page of BA) were
  • Roast beef
  • Gravlax/smoked salmon
  • Greens (lettuce and/or watercress)
  • Jarlsberg cheese
  • Pickled herring (feeling adventurous?)
  • Hard-boiled eggs (sliced)
  • Honey mustard
  • Cucumber (sliced)
We had to do without greens and pickled herring...but everything turned out well. We even had a flask of Aquavit! Passing toppings around the picnic table definitely helped spark lively conversation.

I must say: roast beef, horseradish mayo, and cucumber makes a very tasty sandwich.

xo, anne.

Rainier Adventures

So last weekend, some friends and I headed up to Mt Rainier for a little relaxation at my friend’s cabin. It was an amazing weekend; we swam in the glacial melt, sunned on the rocks, went hiking in the woods, had some drinks, and I made AMAZING tofu curry.

I find that it is challenging and exciting to cook for a group that includes vegetarians: I was a vegetarian for many years, and cooking for vegetarians gives me the opportunity to use recipes that I don’t usually get to. Most of my cooking lately revolves around at least one kind of meat, and finding ways to satisfy vegetarians and carnivores alike is exciting! I recently read an article in Saveur magazine about an all-vegetarian Thanksgiving feast, and it has inspired me to work on my vegetarian repertoire.

My curry included tofu, potatoes, mushroom, onions, carrots, and sweet peppers, with red curry and coconut milk, and it turned out FANTASTIC. My special secret was marinating and frying the tofu in soy sauce, and adding a generous portion of honey to the sauce! 

The area around Mt Rainier is spectacular! 


 I met a friendly elk along the roadside!