Monday, August 31, 2009

Post Blog to Lost and Found

In the continuing story of a girl who hung up the apron and the business to follow another path then made a U turn back after realizing she was homesick for catering and couldn't wait to get back in the kitchen... Help! - can't stop!!

In this episode, the girl can't resist the world of catering and starts reliving her favorite dishes and developing delicious new ones too. Her plan is to cook for others, using the freshest ingredients and creative new ideas for special home occasions.

That girl would be yours truly, and if you need to entertain, I bring you "Fresh Ideas"

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Big Occasion, Small Event

August 23, 2009, was my parents 50th anniversary. I don't know about you, but I think this is a pretty big accomplishment! In our culture, these milestones are usually met with a big celebration. I was envisioning one with beautiful food, music and flowers, lot's of guests. My mom said, "no, thank you."

I started back months ago offering to host a "gala" for the occasion, my mom wouldn't hear of it. My sister and I wanted to do something special and finally as the date approached, we settled on a small but pretty darn decent dinner party on my patio.

The most challenging task of course was for me to cook for 10 guests not 20, to get over the chairs not matching and that I didn't have enough teaspoons. To my credit, I didn't panic when the cat threw up, and the light bulb in the bathroom (which was supposed to last forever) burnt out.

I cleverly worked my son who is currently morphing into a teenager, ignoring his painfully bored expressions and strange ability to go limp when I asked to do anything. I coerced him into slicing strawberries for the cake and setting the table. My husband is both amazing with a vacuum and can prepare a delicious smoked pork shoulder in a mere 7 hours.

My sister brought the most delicious bread, crab dip, baked beans and fresh corn. Richard grilled the teriyaki chicken and fresh pineapple in addition to the smoked pork, and local handmade sausages. I made some homey salads, traditional macaroni and fresh tossed peanut slaw. The small cake was butter yellow with whipped cream and ripe strawberries, sliced expertly by a thirteen year old who managed to make it through one task.

We had hung string lights on the patio, and put a rich chocolate damask cloth over two tables placed end to end. Eclectic collection of shells in glass bowls with cuttings from various trees and shrubs in the yard made an economical and unique centerpiece. Music and good company finished the small but special evening.

Today, marks another anniversary. August 25, 2008, was the date of my first blog! Happy Birthday- "Notes From The Kitchen Galley.".. What do you think? Should we celebrate?

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Lost and Found

I know what you are thinking... how do you disappear for four months then pop up like nothings happened? Well you don't, and a lot did happen since I last wrote, but the adventures, diversions and even a career change could fill several blogs! I'll attempt to be brief!

In early 2008, after 25 years of Catering, I choose to hang up my apron. Though I feel it was the best choice, it was still painful closing the business I had poured half my life into. The plan of course was to retire from catering, get a normal job working for a big corporation. Then I thought I'd try a new hobby, writing, and finally spend quality time with my family. Whew! life wrapped up neat and tidy.

Unfortunatly, the big corporation 8:00-5:00 office job, left me frustrated and boxed in. I had stopped sleeping, writing and obviously my blog went untouched. I brought my complaints home and beat my family with them nightly, the stress took it's toll on my health as well. Neat life plan begins to unravel.

At the end of April 2009, I was offered the opportunity to help with the design of exhibits for the OC Fair as last year (see My Cheese Affair 9-08-08 this year Super Swine) I realized the craving for a hands on creative project was to loud to ignore, so I worked both jobs through the first week of August. Planning, creating, and thinking up new ideas reminded me of what I enjoyed most in my previous business.

I loved designing the fair exhibit. I also loved helping a few friends with small home parties, now can you guess what happened? I was homesick for catering! I had to let the office job go (lest I go postal) and finally slept through a night.

I realize I haven't offered a recipe today, or even a ending to the story but it's time to post...I'll share a quote from the late Gilda Radner, a great American Comedian, 1946-1989.

"I can always be distracted by love but eventually I get horny for my creativity"

I couldn't have said it better.