Thursday, July 1, 2010

Walk on the Ocean

It's been a little longer than I usually wait to post.  But it was a busy week, and so it goes.  Last Thursday Mary-Kate and I went to the Whites, Sparkling and Rose Wine Tasting at the Concord Cooperative Market. It was free and it was quite the event.  They had 14 tables of wines with 5-7 wines on each table. We only tried a few from each table, but it was really interesting to try some new things. There were things that were awful, and things that reminded me of that Zarex drink stuff when we were kids, anyone else remember that?  The hands down winner of the evening was Valentin Bianchi New Age White, which was a sparkling wine from Argentina and it was really yummy.  I may have to go back and get some because that was just really good. 

On Friday I went out to dinner and worked on the novel a bit, even though the next day was writing group and I had already posted my submission. So I'm ahead of the game for next month...woo hoo!! Yay!!

On Saturday morning Shawn and I went down to Bird Supply of Nashua so that we could get Kiwi some food and new toys.  Because the little brat is so deprived and needs new toys even though she has about 15 she hasn't completely destroyed yet.

Saturday afternoon was the monthly meeting of our writing group, the Misplaced Modifiers and we met at Mary Kate's.  Can I just say "cake"?  Mary Kate shares my dairy woes, and she made this dairy free mousse cake that was just unreal.  It is also gluten free.  It was so, so yummy.  She shared the recipe so here it is:

Mocha Chocolate Mousse Cake

Vegetarian Times, March 2010

9 oz semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
3/4 c light coconut milk
1 T instant espresso powder
1 T vanilla extract
5 room temperature eggs
6 T sugar
1/4 c almond flour

Preheat oven to 400F.  Coat 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray. Wrap bottom and sides (outside!) with foil.  Grind chocolate to coarse meal in food processor.  Bring coconut milk to a boil in saucepan. 
Remove from heat and stir in espresso powder.  Pour over chocolate and mix until smooth. Add vanilla, and stir to combine.

Beat eggs and sugar with electric mixer on high until doubled in volume -- about 5 minutes.  Fold eggs, then almond flour, into chocolate mixture.  Pour batter into prepared pan.

Set pan inside roasting pan and fill roasting pan with 1 inch of hot water.  Bake 15-20 minutes, until a dry crust forms on the top but the center is still wobbly. Remove pan from water, and cool on wire rack.  Chill 2 hours or overnight.

It was unreal. Seriously, you'd never know that it was dairy free or gluten free for that matter.  Besides the cake, the meeting I think was very productive, and enjoyable as it always is.  I have some new direction on some revisions, so that's good.   

Sunday, Shawn and I decided to go for a ride at Ordiorne Point State Park. We thought it would be beautiful by the ocean and it was, but the bike path looked a lot bigger on the map, and we're not really comfortable on the road. So we ended up riding on some of the hiking trails which were just a tad overgrown as you'll see. I have a lovely bruise from a tree branch, and Shawn managed to spike one of his tires with a shard of glass.

It was pretty though.  I also got to test drive my new bike basket that I picked up at Goodales on Friday night.  The under the seat pack is nice, but there's only so much crap you can shove back there (i.e., it's tight fit for my camera, the inhaler, my blackberry and my keys.)

  The beach views were really pretty and the air was cool and it would have been nice to bike down the road, but the traffic was very heavy, and I'm just not that lucky.

When we got back from the ride, it was really too late to go to Concord for guild, so I stayed home to do make this week's bread. For me I made a Toasted Oat and Walnut Maple bread, and Shawn requested a Caraway and Onion rye bread, so I made it for him.  The bread maker is working out pretty well, for the milk free thing.  
I also finally managed to get organized the Yarn Auction Benefit for my friend Lora who is having some health issues now.  If anyone has yarn they want to donate to the auction to help with Lora's medical bills, please email me.   

Last night I went to knitting with the Manchvegas crowd. This week I've been working on Secret Project II for Chris and Kristie.  I had a little set back with Secret Project II, but I think it's resolved.  Also it was looking like I might run out of yarn, but I was able to pick up more at the Elegant Ewe today--one of the same dye lot and one different dye lot, but it looks close.  Unfortunately, I also managed to spot some more Schoppel-Wolle Lace Ball that I had to have.  So it left the store with me.  Gorgeous isn't it? Sigh...

In further fiber news, the TKGA show coming up, and I'm going to the market on the 10th. (Drumroll please)  Finally...after about 13 years of wanting to go...and being frustrated every year because one of my life events or someone else's has gotten in my way...I am going to Stitches East 2010!!! Woo hoo!!  I'm taking two classes one on Morphing Cables with Fiona Ellis and one on Double Knitting with Candace Eisner Strick. I'm going to get to stay with my friend Heather M, who is one of the nicest people I know, so I'm thrilled about that too!

I've also been working on the novel.  I'm almost out of readjusting the timeline hell. I have 110 pages and 31,903 words, not counting what I wrote in my notebook at dinner tonight. You know, I blew off the novel a bit as a result of baby knitting-palooza and the whole dairy exhaustion thing, but I really want to have this finished by November 2010.  I think a year is reasonable for a novel.  So I have to bang out 69,000 more words or so by could happen.

This is kind of a long post, but that's most of the news, stay tuned for updates as they occur.

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