Sunday, March 21, 2010

Semiramis, Sister Act, City Love

This weekend has been spectacular but you won't find any of the usual suspects in its description. The weather was murky at best, spitting wet snow at worst (most of Saturday). There were no parties, no new corner bakeries or backstreet bistros discovered, no grand plans to be seen. I don't think I've put lipstick on since Friday and even then it was because fishing in my bag for chapstick wasn't catching anything.

Instead, I spent 90% of it alone or with my best friend/neighbor. We made a Brown Line run up to Kedzie on Friday night and it still blows my mind that it takes 1 train and less than $3 to get all the way up into Albany Park, one of the city's more concentrated Middle Eastern neighborhoods. You step off the train and there it is. The best damn Lebanese restaurant I have thought to want. Semiramis.

Last year about this time, there were some strange things afoot in my health department. After an especially long afternoon in an MRI tube, Molly picked me up and we went straight there and had an incredible go of both food and company. Friday, it'd been a wild week* for both of us and we wondered if our friends would be there again. They were and again it was wine, fattoush, kafta and fat fries coated with sumac and garlic mousse. Semiramis and places like it remind me why I love city life so much.

Saturday was a day mostly categorized by the snow. I did 5 miles at the gym because Sister Act was on and I wanted to keep going till "Oh Maria."

Molly and I took off to the Empty Bottle Farmer's Market** picking up a small lemon tart from Celestial Kitchens and a gorgeous fresh baguette from Cook Au Vin. The latter is opening a new location on Milwaukee in Logan Square this summer and I'm looking forward to warm walks up there for bread. Or perhaps a crepe (should you ever be in a position to talk me into going to get a crepe with you, know that the word itself will suffice). There was a Target run for a heart rate monitor (thanks again to Coach Gina) and a quick stop-in at Goddess and the Grocer for their lemon spinach artichoke dip and some Israeli couscous.

I watched the entire 5th season of Weeds (croquet, ftw) and we feasted on the picture at top for dinner: fresh baguette, salted butter, quince preserves, prosciutto, a wedge of Boucheron cheese, fruited Israeli couscous and some of that glorious green dip. We had wine and then I folded laundry. Today I'm taking my heart rate monitor for a spin after brunch at Dave and Lisa's. This weekend was not all that exciting on paper but in reality was filled to the brim with everything I needed.

*When I say wild week I mean so wild I think I actually mentally blocked my ATM pin number. It is the strangest thing. I have had the same one for 3 years and then POOF! It was gone from my head. It's hard for me to even admit this beyond wondering if this has ever happened to anyone else?!

**I will be avoiding travel at all costs on the third weekend of every month in order attend this market. Farmers market in a rock venue with killer bloody marys and excellent vendors. In my neighborhood. Only exception could be Portland next month but the Portland of my imagination is one big rock venue farmers market so I feel justified.


Molly McGuffin said...

mmmm that picture brings back all kinds of goodness from sat night's simple feast. i've continued the charcuterie/bread/olive oil/green crack dip trend today ... ruh-roh. oooh and bought ginger beer, so we'll try out those cocktails this week! :)

Bayjb said...

I have never had Lebanese food before but I'm very tempted after seeing you check in there twice this weekend. We must discuss.

TKTC said...

Molly McGuff- Did you find the ginger beer at TJ's?? I have the Pimms! Let's find the St Germain and the Chartreuse and get our mix on. Also- I keep smelling my own hair. That Lush stuff is called "Big"? Hoping my pillow smells like that by morning.

Bayjb: We'll grab a group (TC, Lizz and Robin?) and head on up after work one night. It's really really easy to get to and it's just wonderful. You'll love it.

CookTeen said...

I wanted to make sure you get this--thank you so much for your extremely sweet comment it means a lot to me!! I am so glad blogging has led me to people who are so kind with their words and inspriring with their food.

With love and cupcakes,

TKTC said...

CookTeen- You are MORE than welcome. The internet has given me more straight up quality women in my life than I can count on both hands. And they usually come bearing cupcakes. I love it.

paige worthy said...

I am sitting on my sofa dying of laughter after watching that YouTube clip from Sister Act. My best moment from those movies is the "Lauryn Hill busts shit out" version of "Joyful Joyful" in the second one. Heeeeeeeeell.

Aurore Labenheim said...

Oh Gosh...since I read about Cook au vin and its bread in TOC - I want to go. SO. BAD.
I have a bad case of bread withdrawal since I have been in the US, and it's been way too long.
So I am awaiting your verdict - on top of the 'gorgeous fresh baguette'.

My next entry will be all about food!
: )

(oh - and I totally want to meet the guy and marry him - even though I am already married. Is he cute? You know what? it actually doesn't matter...)