Monday, June 23, 2008

the weekend: a recap.

what a random -- but fun -- weekend it was.

after a long day of work on friday, i headed out to dinner at yume sushi with some of my girlfriends. i'll be honest: the sushi at yume isn't out-of-this-world stellar. though my seaweed salad was yummy, the avocado roll i had was comparable to the pre-packaged one i pick up at whole foods -- in fact, i think i may prefer the whole foods version. the rest of the table -- who ate actual fish -- agreed; the girls enjoyed the white tuna rolls but thought the rest was kind of mediocre. but a couple of cocktails on ceviche's rooftop bar, mixed with the sultry june weather, made us forget all about our mediocre dinner experience.
saturday morning and afternoon consisted mostly of sleeping way in, watching tv with oscar (above) and some errands, but on saturday night i ventured out (in the pouring rain!) to see forgetting sarah marshall at the parkway 8 cinema on lockwood ridge road -- which charges, i kid you not, $2 for movie tickets ($1 before 6 p.m!). granted, the movies play there a month or two after their initial release, but who cares? the $2 ticket more than makes up for that. the judd apatow-produced movie was a bit long, but jason segel, who wrote the script, was great as the main character and i laughed -- geuninely -- a lot of times. mila kunis and kristen bell were good in their respective roles, as were jonah hill, paul rudd and jack mcbayer. and much like apatow's knocked up (one of my favorite movies), the crude jokes were balanced with some touchingly real emotional moments. not the best film i've seen lately, but i'd certainly pay more than $2 to see it. if you plan on netflixing the dvd, here's a.o. scott's new york times review; he says all of this much more eloquently than i can. and if you're in sarasota, definitely check out the parkway 8.
sunday i woke up to a very weird smell wafting through my apartment, and after whipping up a yummy breakfast (scrambled eggs, a waffle and good coffee), i spent most of the early afternoon doing dishes, sweeping and mopping to try to get rid of it. (you're probably wrinkling your nose right about now; in my defense, there's a good chance that the smell could have been coming from outside. but it's completely gone now, at any rate.) then, after a quick run to the grocery store, i morphed into italian matriarch mode, standing over my stove and stirring a pot of homemade tomato sauce while oscar slept on the floor near me. if you're wondering how i could possibly stand heating up the kitchen like that in the middle of june, i'll tell you: the recipe was authored by my culinary icon, heidi swanson, and literally took five minutes to cook. here's my rundown, with a link to heidi's recipe afterward: heat extra-virgin olive oil, chopped garlic, red pepper flakes and a little bit of sea salt over medium-high heat; add a 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes and continue heating until sauce simmers; remove from heat and add sauce if needed; and stir in the zest of one lemon, which adds a surprising flavor to the dish and makes it feel considerably lighter. make sure to read heidi's recipe, though; she talks a lot about ingredients and it's always a pleasure to read her posts. i spooned a generous amount of the sauce over some whole-wheat pasta shells and topped the whole thing off with a dusting of parmesan cheese and a little more lemon zest, as you can see in the photo above. (oh, and be warned: if you're a spice wimp, like me, this sauce definitely has some kick to it, but it's still delicious.)

so that was the weekend, and now it's monday. there's no real point to this post, is there? it's sort of an amalgam of several categories. i'll have some more specific, less random posts coming up this week, but until then, have a wonderful monday and tell me: what did your weekend consist of?

ps: i'm trying to convince myself not to make bonnee sharp's fantastic-looking rum cake, but i have a feeling that it may just pop out of my oven on a quiet night this and a review to come if it does, of course.

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