A Sad Stomach

Good morning, all. It’s been a bit of a crazy week, and it has prevented me from posting until now. And now, my friends, is not my best time. Unfortunately, I ate something off on Wednesday evening, and spent all of yesterday suffering the effects of food poisoning. Although relatively minor in severity, my symptoms have made it quite impossible to eat normally, and when I do eat, it’s mostly ak-mak crackers and plain oatmeal. Even then…nah, I won’t go on.

In order to distract myself from the effects of either a very weak stomach, or an evil spore lurking in the food that I ate, I’m going to pretend that everything is fine, and post some pretty pictures of home-cooked/prepared food that I’ve been eating lately. Summer eating is a bit of a paradox for me: on the one hand, the bounty and variety of food is so fantastic, that I almost never miss a trip to the farmer’s market on the weekends. On the other hand, DC weather can be so oppressively muggy and hot, that I look at all my beautiful produce, and despair about turning on the oven, or lighting the gas for a quick sauté. My solution is usually picnic dinners, a random assortment of fruit, nuts, cheese and grains that requires no heat. I may long for the cold dark days of winter, during which I bake (or want to) every other day, and roast veggies and make soups, but in the summer, I relish different things…

Bounty: Gorgeous candy-striped beets. I braved the oven to roast these puppies. Delicious.

Picnic Dinner One: Ak-mak crackers, brie, champagne grapes, roasted almonds, and a quick blistering of thinly-sliced zucchini, tomatoes and garlic.

Picnic Dinner Two: More champagne grapes, a white peach, kiwi, and yogurt with a bit of granola. Who says you can’t have yogurt and fruit for dinner?

Coup de Grâce: The Icebox Pie. Made with homemade whipped cream (with bit of orange extract, vanilla and powdered sugar), nilla wafers and strawberries, this pie is refrigerated for about 6 hours so that the wafers absorb the moisture of the cream and strawberries, and the whole thing takes on the consistency of a fudgy cake.

Looking at this food has made me a bit desperate, but my stomach will prevail…after a while. Next week is Restaurant Week in DC, and I’ve already planned a trip to Zaytinia in Chinatown. Unfortunately, I won’t be ordering the hummus, but I’m psyched to taste the rest of their special menu. Then I’ll be off to the wilds of Wisconsin for some lake-side leisure, followed closely by a trip to New York. I’m sure to find something to write about there, so stay tuned. Happy Friday, everyone!

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