Celebration of food

Tim and I are having an all-around lovely weekend, and like all lovely weekends, it was capped from start to end with deeelicious food.

Ben and Leah visited us for the weekend.  It’s been months since we’ve seen them – I last saw them before I became an accountant and now I am already almost not an accountant – more on that later, maybe.

Anyway, they arrived Friday night, and we were all starving.  We’ve been hearing good things about La Rancherita in Rock Island, so we headed off.  It was a cool, brightly lit Mexican restaurant with tasty pico de gallo and delicious tacos.  The crowd was very eclectic – a mix of races and styles and party sizes.  We saw everything from hipsters to gangstas.  For dessert we introduced Ben and Leah to the joys of Checkers apple pies.  We got 4 for $2.12, and they were perfectly delicious.

For breakfast on Saturday, Tim made his ultra-tasty egg, cheese, Canadian bacon, and  English muffin sandwiches.  He fries the egg perfectly, so that the yolk is the perfect state of gelatinous.  After doing a little shopping at Greatest Grains and the mall, we returned back to the house for a snack lunch of $7.00 Tillamook cheddar cheese, braunschweiger, saltines and cans of Great River Pale Ale.  While the boys played video games and Leah busted through advanced Soduko puzzles, I made guaucamole using this excellent Allrecipes.com recipe.  The freeze-squeezed lime juice gives it a tasty, fresh snap.  After contaminating all of my dishrags and utensils with tiny bits of chopped cilantro, I made chocolate chip cookies, using the recipe from the Nestle Tollhouse bag.  The trick is to get the butter at the perfect level of softness.  About 2 bursts of 10 seconds in the microwave gets it to the stage where it creates tall, fluffy, chewy cookies.

For supper Tim made amazing tortilla soup from an America’s Test Kitchen recipe.  The soup, paired with the gaucamole, made for an excellent supper and uncomfortably fitting trousers.

While we digested our Mexican feast, Leah and I soundly beat Tim and Ben at euchre and then retired to watch Despicable Me.  About 30 minutes into the movie, Tim and Ben were both sound asleep.

Tim treated us with another delicious meal this morning by making buckwheat pancakes and bacon for breakfast. Ben and Leah are cast iron snobs.  Ben, unheeding my warnings, convinced Tim to cook the pancakes on our fairly unseasoned cast iron griddle (which weighs about 30 pounds).  Ben convinced Tim and that a little butter and oil would cause the pancakes to not stick.  He was wrong – stick they did.  But they were still delicious.  I am right now re-seasoning the griddle and our cast iron pan.  I have already set off the fire detector.  We have several windows wide open, but the whole house is still quite smoky.  It better be worth it.

Besides eating, we spent the rest of the weekend playing video games, drinking excellent beers (Hopalicious!), doing lots of dishes, and just all around enjoying each other company.  Hanging out with family is so awesome.  It really makes me wish that we lived closer to Ben and Leah, and/or my brothers.  Someday…

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