The latest duck egg recipe inspired by Gordon Ramsey of all people after I saw someone on one of his cooking contest shows make this and they said it was the hardest homemade pasta dish out there – Uova da Ravioli with Bacon-Sage Sauce. Why did I choose it? Well you know, when you have four quackers in the back yard, you start getting creative… We made our first batch of egg pasta for the dough (first lesson learned: do not use pastry flour, get all purpose as it’s the closest you can get next to the 00 that is preferred for this), rolled it out as thin as possible (second lesson learned: if you think it’s the right thickness, keep rolling it out even more, if you’re without a pasta machine like us), piped the ricotta/parmesan “nest” for the carefully-plopped duck egg yolk to sit in before sealing the pasta and literally holding my breath as I oh-so-slowly slipped each in the water (third lesson learned: have everything literally ready to go, including your mixed greens on the side as you need to eat this pronto after it comes out). The sage we used is from our garden and the pancetta is Dan’s homemade as well – so with butter, it was a bit of heaven. Verdict? Pretty damn good but GEEZ did it take a long time just to make them with our amateur hands – definitely for special occasions!!!
This quote from Nick Offerman posted via Jessica Valenti’s The Week in Patriarchy newsletter from The Guardian was so badass I had to share.
This is definitely what I’d call the “little yellow rose that could”. The tallest it’s ever grown is maybe 5′ tall since I rescued it growing out of the side of the old (long since cut down) ailanthus “weed tree” years ago and gave it a new chance to grow. It used to be in our front yard but as it’s always been kind of leggy so last spring I moved it to the side yard where it gets Southern exposure and could really take up some space and holy moly, this one stem is now at least 10′ tall (that’s the top of one of our bedroom windows it’s now approached)! Our other roses are starting to settle into autumn but this one is still reaching for the sky. It just gets me so sentimental about the journey I’ve taken in this house and garden of mine that started back in spring of 2006 with its sagging 5-layer roof, crappy pale yellow paint, single pane windows, dilapidated white picket fence, zero insulation and weed-treed front and back yards, and is coming to a finale in 2018 so much healthier and happier than when it started out back then. It’s hard to think about the day we will eventually leave but dang, it’s a collection of memories and breathing new life into it (and myself) that I will never forget.
10 years after my first time there, I finally returned to the super-trendy Pok Pok for lunch (anyone who knows me well knows that I hate hour-long waits for tables that places like that are known for, and simply will not go to a restaurant if that kind of wait is a prerequisite to eat), taking the husband along so he could enjoy some seriously delicious Thai food, including the Kung Op Wun Sen, which is prawns baked in a clay pot with pork belly, soy, ginger, and all kinds of other yummies. I literally hadn’t been there since Division St. exploded with condos over the past decade, but Tuesday after the regular lunch rush (nice having a husband who works retail)? That’s the ticket to get in without waiting. Yummers. (photo credit)
On that same day, since we were already criss-crossing around town as it is, I took Dan to Jim & Patty’s (AKA Coffee People!) so he could experience the goodness of old school PDX coffee (for my fellow longtime Northwesterners, Velvet Hammer is where it’s at for me these days as I no longer have the intestinal fortitude for the Black Tiger) we headed over to the West side to visit the last butcher on our “to-try” list, Block & Board, where we met the owner, Kyle, who also was an instructor at Dan’s butchery & charcuterie class this past spring. He was very genuine, knowledgeable, and (bonus!) was happily missing the “too cool for school” gene that is has sadly become the norm instead of the exception in this town.
And finally (can you sense this week’s food theme?), I made a batch of homemade bagels to go with the fennel-cured salmon that had been soaking up all the salty goodness last week in the fridge and was finally ready to eat. Let me tell you, there are few things more tempting than a warm bagel right out of the oven, and the salmon was seriously the icing. I will never get tired of it!