September-October 2007: Assorted Fall Fun

Decorated Cookies

It was September, but we were still getting zucchini from our wonderful CSA ("our farm," as Robert fondly calls it), so I made a huge batch of zucchini cookies to try to use some of it up in a creative (okay, sugary) way. Then, because who doesn't like playing with food coloring, I tinted a lemon frosting several bright colors and set to work decorating. Later that night, Robert's grandmother Helena called me when she opened the tin of cookies we had left with her--she said she opened up the tin and just started laughing at how bright and pretty they were.

The Big E

The Big E (joint New England states' state fair) was, as always, excellent with a capital E. Above you see Miriam, Sarah, Rebekah, Karen, and Sean on the ferris wheel, while Robert and I watched and took pictures. (We were saving our tickets for the slightly-more-exciting Zipper.) Below you see me going a little crazy in one of the state houses: Lego C-3po, Lego R2-D2, maple cotton candy, and hot and fresh kettle corn? Wow. Miriam got her cheese curds, Sarah got to see her Canadian Mountie horse show (sadly after Miriam, Robert, and I had already left), and Robert got his discounted parking--what more could anyone ask for? Um, right. . . maybe the Mets could have ACTUALLY MADE IT TO THE POST-SEASON! (We kept checking scores on the game throughout the day--thank goodness for Google text messages!)

Sunset on the Christian Science Plaza

Yep, it's fall--changing leaves, baseball tension, and all that--but they kept the fountain going right through Columbus Day weekend, possibly because of the mild, balmy weather we'd been having, so one night Robert and I availed ourselves of the Cold Stone Creamery in the Prudential, and then ate our ice cream sitting on the plaza looking at the fountain and the reflecting pool.

Masaharu Morimoto at BU

Iron Chef Japanese himself came to the BU Food and Wine seminars for a single-day event--interview, cooking demonstration, and then book-signing, all in one. Sean and I, being the Morimoto freaks we are, eagerly signed up to attend (in fact, they hadn't even gotten the web link for registration working when I first tried to sign up) and had a fabulous time. Morimoto was very personable and outgoing, and answered questions such as, "When you get home after a long day, what do you like to eat?" with answers like, "Whatever is in the house!" The interviewer had to rephrase: "What is your comfort food?" she asked, and a bubbling Morimoto immediately and enthusiastically answered, "Onigiri!" complete with the hand gestures for forming them. I always knew I loved onigiri. . . hm!

The cooking demonstration was great ("Sorry, I not talk while I'm touch fish," he said at one point, boning a salmon fillet) and afterward we got to walk into the back kitchen and get plates of the dishes he'd made replicated by the BU culinary school students. There was also sake and beer from his private label. Next everyone lined up and were asked how we wanted our cookbooks autographed (Sean and I chose the straight-forward "To Sean" and "To Christina" respectively), then then Morimoto signed each one--as you can see above.

The coda to this story is that the following Saturday I was already planning on having Sarah, Sean, Jef, Jin, and a few other people over for sushi--it was a small step from that idea to including a few of Morimoto's dishes in the menu, of course. I made the asparagus pocky (though they didn't set long enough for them to have quite that pocky crispiness), with white asparagus poached in plum wine, sprite, star anise, and soy sauce, then coated in chocolate. Sean, Leonid, Robert, and I were the only ones who seemed to like it, though. The white asparagus was wonderfully mild, and (I thought) took very well to the chocolate and seasonings. I also made a beet sorbet which Robert declared "too beety" and Sarah and I, oddly, found not beety enough. Apparently you can please no one with beet sorbet. . . . most everyone else (again, except Sean) was just scared by it, especially when I scooped small balls of it next to the sugared salmon and served this as the first dessert course after the meal. Most people didn't even really like the sugared salmon--salmon salted, then soaked in brandy, then cured in granulated raw sugar and spices. Oh, I need more friends like Sean!


More October fun? Read on about Halloween!

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Created: 10/28/07. Last Modified: 10/28/07.