Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Vignettes from out and about

Into town via public transportation on the MBTA Green line.  We were going to a classical music concert, but like, a zillion young people boarded the train until it was full by the 3rd stop and SRO, very crowded until Brookline Village, when the conductor announced, as they do with ungodly frequency, "this train is going out of service."  Everyone off.  What to do?  Would we be late for the concert?  Next train comes, already crowded, and now 200 more people trying to board.  Only one door opens.  We are last in line, and finally the door we were standing by opens and we're the last two on.  I say some bad words.

Concert is lovely.  The Musicians of the Old Post Road.  We discovered them about three years ago.  German music from the time of Bach.  Sprightly, melodious, and traditional.  Beautiful chapel is the Emmanuel Church on Boston's Newbury Street.  After the concert, we wander down Newbury St, looking at the Christmas windows and drooling over the high priced merchandise. 

Finally into Papa  Razzi where we dine whenever we're in the neighborhood except for ultra-nice days when we go to Stephanies.  Unfashionably early, but there's always a crowd.  Waiter seems surprised that we've been there before, and keeps trying to give us each other's food.  I order the meat appetizer and the chicken entree, while S.O. orders a vegetarian soup and a  spicy sausage/pasta entree.   Never assume.  Food and wine delicious as usual.  Always an interesting crowd to watch.

Back onto the "T" where they are two girls in Muslim headscarves and black tights up to their hip-length coats.  Lots and lots of leg. Somewhat confused by this garb (me not them).  So anything goes.

Yesterday off to the doctor, the dump, Walmart and Whole Foods.  At Walmart I get my finger stuck in the Salvation Army bucket, trying to push my bill snd the bill of the man before me bill into the container.  A moment of panic.  Give finger a tremendous yank, hoping I don't do any permanent digital damage, and except for a small scrape, I am free and uninjured.  I ask the woman if anyone has ever done that before, and she says no.

At Whole Foods we find super-cheap Brussels Sprouts and  great cheese sale.  Also notice hazel nuts and walnuts in bulk are a much better price than our supermarket.  Buy some bulk soaps for a Christmas gift.

Back at home, we devour the Whole Foods "Pizza of the Day."  It is a basil, tomato, mushroom, cheese and pesto affair.  Very tasty with a nice thin crust.  Never had one with pesto before.

I make steak soup, which is a primo way to eek 4 servings out of one small steak.  Lots of veggies:  onion, garlic, thyme (steal from neighbors) carrots, celery, tomatoes, kale, potatoes.  Some noodles, too, and the steak, sauteed until med- rare and then saved until the final assembly.  I added some pepper flakes and Southwestern seasoning.  Lots of pepper.  Tasted real good.

Next came a new recipe for cookies made with the hazelnuts.  Total disaster!  I was supposed to form the dough into 1 inch balls, but it was way too dry and crumbly.  Finally added 3 more T. of butter.  Then the hazelnuts adorning the cookies fell out.  Then, the chocolate didn't melt right and it was a mess dipping the cookie bottoms into it.  They didn't dry, and I put the whole business outside wondering if a hungry coyote would finish the destruction.   No such luck.  Some cookies are without both nuts and chocolate bottoms.  They taste o.k. and look o.k., but I'll never make them again.  I have two other excellent cookies to take to the party Wednesday.  Old standbys.    

With two cats on my lap, I watched the Pats game to its late but satisfactory conclusion.  Every day brings its own triumphs and struggles.  Onward, onward.


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