Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wedding Photos, round 1

As promised, wedding photos!  There will be more to come in the next few weeks.  All photos courtesy of Joy Lyn Photography.  Have a nice Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

NoLa visitors

someone is distracted
Last weekend my good friend Sally and her manfriend Brendan came to visit.  They were on their way from Raleigh to New Orleans.  We cracked open a bottle of sparkling Martinelli's to celebrate the occasion and had a feast!

crab boil, with crawdad starter
 We finally got to break in the awesome crab-crackers we got as wedding presents.  Thanks Mary and Brendan (different Brendan)!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Feeling fall food

seared scallops and brussels
It's been so nice to settle back into life in Atlanta.  I've reorganized my workspace and it feels great!  It's like getting ready for school again.  School is definitely back in session in this neighborhood and its all starting to feel like fall.  The temperatures haven't cooled yet, but the fall magazines* are making me crave sweaters and some fall dishes.  It might not be seasonally appropriate, but man were they good!

The seared scallops above were cribbed from an Alton Brown tutorial.

Below are salt-baked potatoes from the September-October Cook's Illustrated.  I've been a subscriber for years and find their regular issues to be hit or miss (the seasonal entertaining issues however, which aggravating don't come with the subscription, are always worth buying), this issue was a WINNER.  Salt-baked potatoes, a French-style pot roast, veggie lasagna, potato gnocchi with browned butter and sage... forget summer salads and bring on those hearty dishes!
salt-baked potatoes, roasted asparagus and garlic
 The gist of the recipe is baking potatoes along with a head of garlic and several sprigs of rosemary on a bed of salt.  There are some other details but you end up with beautifully textured potatoes with perfectly seasoned  crispy skin and a roasted-garlic and butter garnish.  WOW.

3-bean chili and toppings
3-bean chili courtesy of Food Network and Rachael Ray.  I'm usually not one to follow Miss EVOO's instructions but dang was this chili incredibly easy (took 20 minutes) and flavorful.  It was the perfect accompaniment to those baked potatoes and a recipe I'll be using again.

*side note: Alex and I just recently started Mad Men (yeah I know we're culturally years behind) and in the first scene of the first episode when the waiter says, "women sure do love their magazines!" and he and Don Draper laugh, I cringed but can't deny that it is so true.

Friday, August 26, 2011

reason #3984 to visit North Carolina

Now there's a happy boy!  Sorry we've been negligent bloggers this week.  I promise to be better, especially now that I have the disc of wedding photos from our photographer!  Keep an eye out for those in the next week(s), among other yummy things.

These photos were our last meal in North Carolina after a very brief but fantastic visit.  We went to a gorgeous wedding, saw some great people we hadn't seen in a while, ate good food, and sent a good friend off on her travels.  What better way to end the weekend than with a bo' berry biscuit and chicken for breakfast?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Peter Chang///"Disappearing Chef" Found

hot and sour soup
We haven't wasted any time since returning to Atlanta.  Last week we made the trek to Sandy Springs to eat at Tasty China.  Tasty China is the temporary posting of Peter Chang, famously dubbed "the Disappearing Chef" by the New Yorker.  Cheng used to cook at the Chinese Embassy in Washington D.C. but for whatever reason decided to leave this prestigious position to roam the greater U.S., stopping and cooking in his distinctive Szechuan style along the way.  And now, lucky for us, he's in Atlanta!
egg drop soup

fish and coriander rolls

extra spicy duck soup in a hot stone bowl
This was by far the best Chinese food I've had outside of Asia.  Nothing else even comes close.  Not only is the food incredibly delicious, its a rare piece of excellence in a severely under-served category in American dining.  Peter Chang's Tasty China is a must-eat for anyone in the area, and well worth the trip.

Monday, August 15, 2011

A day at the races

While we were in Minnesota, Alex's dad took us and Bubby, Alex's grandmother, to the newly-reopened Canterbury Park in Shakopee, MN to try our luck at the races.

It ended up being Alex and my lucky day!  We won $11 dollars on the quarter horses, giving us a net profit of $1 for the day when you subtract the $5 per person entry fee.

Although no one was a big winner that day, we had a really nice time.  Thanks Gary!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Northfield Reception, August 6 2011

flower arrangements & kokechi

The legendary Iris at work

Photo credit Laura Emiko Soltis
We're finally back in Atlanta!  After our 3 weeks in Turkey we flew to Minnesota to celebrate our marriage with Alex's family and their friends.  We had an amazing time with everyone.  It was great to finally meet a lot of the people I'd only heard about.  Everyone really chipped in for the event.  Alex's mom organized the whole thing and her good friend Iris catered.  Iris is an incredibly accomplished woman.  On top of her illustrious credentials, she is a kick-ass chef.  She made what must have been a dozen tarts, hundreds of cookies and scones, several salmon and shrimp loaf cakes (an incredibly tasty Icelandic specialty) and a krunsekaka, aka Norwegian wedding cake.  Needless to say, no one went home hungry and we enjoyed the leftovers for days!  

A big thank-you to everyone who contributed, stopped-by, and helped us close-out our month-long celebration of marriage!  

Friday, August 5, 2011


Everyman tag in Northfield, MN.


The middle school I attended has been purchased by Carleton and is being converted into an arts center. This all seems like a good idea but it still Ida strange to see childhood haunts disappear.

Similarly the crabapple tree in my parent's front yard died and has been replaced with a small breakfast patio area.

Sunrise. Sunset.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Minnesota for the week

Spending a week with Alexs family in Minnesota. @goodbye blue mondays "getting work done"