Sunday, September 16, 2012

A Wonderful Weekend - Bike Racing, Dinner Out, Sunrise Drive and Dancing + Recipes

We had a crazy busy weekend.

We had dinner at Root Down. It is a very popular, hip restaurant. The food was really wonderful. We started out by sharing an order of sweet potato fries with a curry and lime yogurt dipping sauce. We followed that with the salads of the day. I had Steamed PEI Mussels / Thai Red Curry Broth, White Wine, Israeli Cous-Cous, Scallions, Fines Herbes & Grilled Bread as I had been craving mussels for about six months. (I am the only one in our family that likes them, so I don't make them for dinner.) Don had peach bourbon BBQ Pork sliders and Larr had steak. We had Chocolate Hazelnut Torte / Macerated Cherries, with Hazelnut Powder & Chicory Devonshire Cream for dessert. The decor was a lot of fun. The ladies' bathroom was decorated with bathroom scales, one of them was even covered in pink fake fur. I would like to take the kids to eat there some time. Ethan was working and Ellie was at a friend's house.

Earlier in the morning Ellie did the Kick It CX cyclocross race. She was jazzed about getting to do the fly over. They often close it off to juniors.

We really enjoyed the t-shirts at the Endurance Conspiracy booth. I loved the orange shirt with the monster shouldering the bike and a bag of courage. Ellie thought about that one, but opted for one with Chubaka riding a CX bike.

She also got to try out a Pugsly bike over at the Pedal booth. Our friend, Tom, works there. Ellie really liked the bike. Tom says she needs one. I told him that at $2,000, longing is a good thing. He laughed.

On Sunday, Ellie started a new season on junior instructor for the Cotillion Academy. This year she is teaching the 5th and 6th grade class. When you see Ellie and Matt, her male counterpart, they kind of look a bit like Ken and Barbie. I imagine that they look perfect demonstrating the dance moves. This time around they taught party etiquette, the Swing, Fox Trot and the Electric Slide.

This morning Larr and I went for a pre-sunrise drive, hoping to catch the sunrise from some beautiful mountain top. We were somewhat successful. That was fun enough that we went deeper into the hills.

I love the color and textures in this photo.

We found ourselves in Rollinsville, which meant that we HAD to check out the Moffat tunnel. Our timing was great and we were able to watch a train come through the tunnel. When Larr was a young boy he was able to walk into the tunnel. Now there is a safety curtain that must be raised for the train to come through.

Italian Wedding Soup (Modified)

1 batch Pete's Amazing Meatballs (see below)
4 cups Chicken broth
2 stalks celery, minced
2 medium carrots, grated
1 small zucchini, sliced
1/2 teas red pepper flakes
2 teas Montreal Steak seasoning
1 teas paprika
Salt & Pepper (to taste - I actually leave this out)
1 bunch (or bag) spinach
1/2 cup long grain rice, uncooked
1/2 cup White Wine

Make small versions of Pete's Amazing Meatballs. (Mine are about 1 teaspoon each meatball.)
In a large stock pot, combine chicken broth, water, carrot, zucchini and celery. Bring to a boil. Add seasonings and rice and boil for 15 minutes.

Reduce heat to low and add white wine, spinach and meatballs to the soup. Simmer for 15 minutes.
Remove from heat and serve. Add shaved Parmesan cheese on top, if you wish.


Pete's Amazing Meatball Recipe
Our friend, Pete M. makes amazing meatballs. As a boy he had them for breakfast every Sunday. I have fun picturing that in my head when I make a batch of these. They are fun to make and freeze well. They are good enough alone that you don't need any sauce.

Pete's Amazing Meatballs

3-4 TBL Parsley, fresh & chopped
3-4 TBL Basil, fresh and chopped
3-4 Garlic SHoots or 1-2 Garlic Cloves, minced
1# Hamburger (80%)
1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese or Romano Cheese, grated
1 1/2 cup Bread Crumbs (plain or seasoned)
3 Eggs
Salt & Pepper, if desired

Mix the herbs, garlic and hamburger in the food processor or by hand. Add in the grated cheese and process again. Add in the bread crumb with the eggs. Form into Meatballs.

Bake the meatballs in a 350 degree oven. You can also fry them in a skillet.

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