Chowdah

When we lived in the rental house our neighbor – the most generous man on earth – would occasionally bring us things. It started off fairly small, some homemade tortillas here, some smoked salmon from his fishing buddies there. And eventually it progressed to 20lbs of fresh, wild caught Alaskan cod. Figuring this was the time to explore fish recipes, I set out to find something new while Graybeard begged repeatedly for beer-battered fish sticks (which were ultimately delicious and a quick way to make room in the freezer). I had a grand plan to do a whole series of posts on fish recipes, but about two weeks in we discovered a recipe for New England Fish Chowder and never looked back. We’ve made this enough over the last few months that I no longer need to look at the recipe and never forget to pick up seafood stock when I’m at Whole Foods (which is apparently the only place that sells seafood stock in this city). So, here it is. My one and only fish recipe to share:

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Home Sweet New Home

We own this! Actually, the bank owns pretty much all of this.

A few months ago Captain Graybeard, Esquire and I decided it was time to pull the trigger and jump into the housing market. With about two weeks between our initial conversation and being under contract to purchase a home, and another two-ish weeks between closing and hosting our 3rd annual chili cook-off (a rousing success, except the part where Graybeard won), describing the last several months as a whirlwind is a total understatement. After losing the first house we were interested in to an all cash, above-asking, 7 day closing offer, we thought we were going to be in the searching phase for the long haul. But a same-day offer on a house that needed me to channel every ounce of my “see the potential” willpower and we were done.

In a completely uncorroborated story from our neighbor, our house is one of the original farm houses located in the Greenwood neighborhood of Seattle. The surrounding area was supposedly orchards, which may be true given that the street was originally named Orchard Street and we have one sad, poorly-pruned and sort-of dying apple tree in our yard. According to property records, the neighborhood was platted in 1889, and our house built in 1900. From what I can tell from an old photo that has since disappeared from the county website, the house has had the same footprint for a very long time which is interesting considering its size and open layout compared to other homes from the time period.

The Solarium: Hot in the summer. Cold in the winter. Ugly year-round.

 

 

 

 

Unfortunately, at some point what was probably a cool old farmhouse went through a very, very rough period. The ’60s, the ’70s, the’80s, no one can be sure. But the result was a house stripped of everything that resembled character and charm. And in its place: wood paneling, wall-to-wall carpet, popcorn ceilings, and solarium with stained glass and Astro Turf. Like I said, it took every ounce of my “see the potential” willpower.

 

 

 

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Photo Roundup: March-May, 2014

From L to R:

1. New summer haircut.

2. Swimming in Leech Lake near White Pass, Washington.

3. Anniversary dinner at mkt.

4. Road trippin’

5. Photo booth at Seattle Humane Society’s Tuxes & Tails

6. Anniversary weekend getaway to Tieton, Washington

7. Batdog!

8. Kongos concert.

9. Double homebrew session.

10. Sweet Dee being social.

11. Rockin’ a fabulous new dress for Tuxes & Tails

 

Eat Your Kale Like This

I have a confession: I’ve been holding out on my new favorite recipe for a good 4 months now. Since having a version at Oxalis, I’ve been suffering from a serious addiction to this kale salad. And this is not a once-a-week kind of addiction. I’ve been making this salad multiple times per week. Sometimes it’s the only thing I eat for dinner. Sometimes after a particularly abusive, nutrition-less weekend, I find myself craving it. Most the time I don’t even bother plating it, and just eat it directly out of a giant bowl. Occasionally I share.

The beauty of this salad is in the way the dressing balances out the bitterness of the kale and the saltiness of the Parmesan, and that balance only gets better the longer the salad sits before serving. I’ll be honest, I don’t actually follow any recipe for the dressing here and I tend to like my dressing on the lemony side, so these measurements are from a lemon-honey dressing I found that looks fairly close and probably more palatable to the general public.

The Only Kale Salad Recipe You Need (with Lemon-Honey Dressing)

  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3 tablespoons diced shallots
  • Parmesan flakes
  • 1 bunch of kale

Whisk together olive oil & lemon juice. Slowly whisk in honey to taste. Add chopped shallots. Toss kale with dressing & handful of Parmesan flakes. Let sit for at least 15 min prior to serving. Seriously, don’t skip this step.