26 December 2008


This Christmas brought the opportunity to make eggnog twice. The first time was with Jessika, and we were desperate. We had no milk or cream, but we did have sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk!!! It worked kind of, and was tasty and had booze in it. So we liked it. But on Christmas eve, I was prepared with heavy cream and more eggs. This time it was perfect, just like my grandpa Opa's. I beat the egg yolks into the heavy cream and hooch, which was one part of the fluffy equation. But then I whipped the whites into puffy clouds and folded them in separately, after the first part had chilled for a few hours. It was soooo frothy and thick and amazing. We all had one glass that made us very happy, and then thought about barfing. And then we had chocolate cake.

I'm returning to work tonight after an entire week off. I did not want a whole week off, but it happened thanks to the FUCKING SNOW. Monday we leave for New Orleans.

Hopefully I will get some staff meal tonight or tomorrow night. I sure do miss it.

24 December 2008

Christmas Time (It's Here)

Christmas Time (It's Still Here)

It has been FUCKING SNOWING here in Portland for the past... week? I'm losing my marbles and no longer have any sense of time, context or decency. Somehow, my brother Ryland made it here from NYC and my mummsie got here from Maine. I think they were the only two people who had a relatively easy time traveling here this week. I am sorry for those who did not have this luck. I'm also sorry for leaving most of my shopping until yesterday. We had to take the bus downtown, which was packed due to the weather and date, and then deal with the whole downtown insanity and a hungry mom. It was a long day, but sangria made it all OK in the end.
We are getting ready to make a chocolate cake, Pearls marshmallows and Graham crackers (have I mentioned that Graham crackers were origionally made to supress carnal urges?) and then Chicken stew for dinner. More eggnog, more Christmas music, and some healthy family drama are in store for all (Christmas People)!!!! Good Luck.

20 December 2008

Bridges Freeze First

So you're having an affair in a distant city. It's her birthday, you take her to her favorite Portland restaurant. You at first order a $33.00 bottle of wine, saying "I don't know why... I just want this one." You didn't realize it was a half bottle (duh, you transparent shmuck), and then after being flustered and realizing you're being a cheap ass, you select a bottle of Ken Wright Pinot Noir ($125).
Nice choice, your server says. You give a half smile as though to say "I'm just a classy guy... It comes naturally to me."
You decide to try the tasting menu. Your server spends copious amounts of time explaining the dishes, decanting your wine, making sure the lady gets bubbly (on the house) and a candle in her tart.
The bill arrives. Of course, you pay. You examine the final charge. $250. That's almost all of your allowance!!!!! Oh well, you'll just pretend you can't do math and tip $30, plus a compliment on the way out: "Thanks for the greeeeeeaaaaaaat service. Really wonderful."
"GET OUT! Screams your before friendly server.
But I was am so smooth and have such impeccable taste- where did I go wrong?

The public service announcement for the day is that nothing makes you look worse than being cheap in the end with your server. Especially if you are trying to act like a big shot, drinking fancy pants wine like you can afford it. We remember forever.

ps Obviously, I'm not fired. My hobby, hating customers, is still going strong.

pps Guess who's being Santa's elf helper today? That's right, it's me, boxing up (in my MOUTH) chocolates for xocolatl de david!!! I'll take photos of the workshop.

19 December 2008

Sorry Folks (descriptor, not apology)

We are all sorry folks in the restaurant business right now. Shifts being cut left and right, snow keeping people at home, dinners going uneaten. So why haven't I been blogging, you ask? I've been busy thinking of creative ways to occupy my pathetic schedule. I have found many: putting glitter on pine cones, making christmas presents, fawning over Jacky more than usual, baking, cooking lasagnas, wondering if I should start babysitting again, and getting drunk. Just kidding! No, seriously. We also cut down our own christmas tree out in the middle of nowhere, and then decorated it with said pine cones. It's fun having pretty much nothing to do but wring your hands in worry and do crafts. My cayenne-red Kitchenaid mixer came (omg omg omg) so I am preparing to make tons of treats with my mummie. Yes, my mom and brother are coming for Christmas. I usually go to my grandparents house in New Hampshire for the holiday, but I am staying here this year and those two hooligans are coming out for a wee visit. I'm guessing that's why it's snowing here in Oregon- to make me feel like I'm at home and to make them hate it here. Thanks nature, but you can give it a rest.
On Sunday night we went to Pearl's house and strung popcorn and cranberries. It was very Norman Rockwell, and Pearl was being extra cute as she knew she was being watched (Santa.). Internet, I'm going to tell you what I am making for Pearl for Christmas, but you have to promise not to tell her. I'm going to whip her up some homemade pink marshmallows (in my new mixer YAY!), baking her some graham crackers, designing her a personalized chocolate bar wrapper, and finding the most perfect of toasting sticks. Thats right, her very own s'more kit. It's obvious that she has made up for all of her naughty behavior by bribing me with kisses and sweet nothings ever since she realized christmas is coming. My original plan was COAL, AND LOTS OF IT! but when I told her this, she curled up in my lap and batted her eyelashes at me and promised me I was her favorite cousin. What can I say, I'm a sucker for the kid.
In other news, we went to the Stumptown Coffee Christmas party on Tuesday night. They took over the Ace Hotel and Clyde Common, filled the hotel lobby with a mechanical bull plus inflatable ring, and hired a tattoo artist to give out free tattoos. It was intense. There was also a photographer there taking holiday photos for everyone, and we got one taken. I'm laughing with that huge face of mine, and Kevin is crying into his cocktail. According to my dad, it looks like they "photoshopped a fake hand" onto my body, but actually its the real me, looking nuts! So that's cool. We had a good time. None of us rode the bull, but lots of guys took off their pants to ride it with their white collared shirts, ties, and briefs. Many girls attempted the sexy bull ride scene from Urban Cowboy but none achieved it. Oh sexy bull rides. How elusive you seem to be....
Ok, I'm off to probably get fired from my job I mean go to work. Stay tuned for christmas baking with Dirty Deeds (aka De De aka my mom), updates on Pearls gift, and my fundraiser for if I get fired tonight.

12 December 2008

Twenty Four Hours Ago

My birthday is officially over. I'm very sad because I think it was my favorite birthday so far. I didn't know what was in store, and so when Kevin told me to get in the car and then we went and picked up Jessika, I was very excited. He then dropped us both off a Loyly Spa for the afternoon! We saunaed and steamed and did face masks and squealed excitedly the whole while. Later on Kevin and I went to Le Pigeon for dinner which was so delicious and it had been over a year since our last visit so it was really fun to go back. We had pigeon, trout, fois gras, noodles with truffles, and steak. Then we got back in the car and went to the Victory where my friends and father were all joined together in merriment. Jessika made me maple cupcakes which were amazing, and made up for all the times she didn't save me any cake for staff meal. Apparently Jessika's mummy (who reads this blog) was very upset with her for not saving me cake all those times, and so Jessika felt like she had to do right by me on my big day. And she did. I am a little hungover today thanks to one thousand champagne cocktails etc. but I'm hanging in there! Work tonight. It's going to be fantastic!
This morning I went to Pine State to make more apple caramel tarts with bacon pecan crumbles on top (Get it while the gittin's good because last weekend both whole tarts sold out rapidly.) And damn it, I had a damn biscuit! A biscuit with apple butter, fried chicken, bacon and cheddar! That's the Pine State Employee creation, and I feel privliged to have tried it. This madness has to stop. I'm going to be the roundest of rounds if I keep up this terrible behavior plus my gym strike. BUT ANYWAY, no end is in site as New Years is approaching, which means our New Orleans trip, which means 5 days of beignets and cured meats (I'll be with Shane and he requires charcuterie and a cheese plate before and after every meal). I'm so excited. But really. I have to find time for a vegetable eventually. I love vegetables! But where are they when I need them? In the ground? At the supermarket? They aren't at staff meal (unless bathed in liver mousseline or something weird). They aren't in my refrigerator. Who am I kidding anyway- I just glanced down and realized I still have bacon jammed into the crevices of my grandmother's ring- I'm never going to find a vegetable in there.

PS Hey you other baking geeks, guess what I got for my birthday!?!!? A kitchenaid standing mixer!!! It hasn't arrived yet but it's on its way!! It's cayenne!!

08 December 2008

Ok, one last dog related thing (for today)

If anyone wants to know what I want for my birthday, it's this.

05 December 2008


Jacky and Hiro's new Christmas sweaters. Don't they look happy?

P.S. Xocolatl de David and I (Twenty Blackbirds) have collaborated on a dessert for Pine State Biscuits. If a piece of apple tart with fleur de sel caramel (by David himself), bacon and pecan crumbles sounds good to you, I recommend you stop by. Of course I am still making my rosemary and pear crisp for vegetarians or people who simply like pears.

04 December 2008


Last night was looking like it would be a flop with only two reservations on the books. But then... plenty of people showed up, looking for some dinner and expensive wine. So it wasn't so bad after all. There were two highlights: a super nice mother daughter combo (for once) who were celebrating the daughters birthday with a really wonderfully tacky cake that they shared with all of us, and then an older couple that were just plain nice. The gentleman of this couple reminded me so much of my grandfather. We kept chatting about this and that, and then I asked him if he was an artist because somehow I knew that he was. And he was! He works with stone and bronze casting. I told him a little about my grandfathers work and then he looked at me, very sadly, and said "So what are you doing here?". I said, "I'm still in school" and he and his wife both threw their hands up and said "OHHH!" This was a great moment. I could see how someone could take this as a little bit of an insult, as waiting on tables is a fine way to make money, but it's true that it's not much of a challenge. I told them that yet again they sounded like my grandparents "Graduate School- you're going!" and that I appreciated it. I smiled for the rest of the night.

In other news, Hiro has sprung a leek. He is peeing a little bit every where he goes, and wetting his little dog bed every night. Poor puppy! I had the privilege of getting a urine sample from him this morning... it's a glamorous life I lead. He is now curled up in a shame-ball, with the hiccups. I will post photos if he gets diapers.

01 December 2008


Well... We'll see how this season goes as far as restaurant life is concerned. I'm feeling a little disheartened these days and here's why: Although we have still been busy, the threat of becoming un-busy has people tense and afraid. You know how people act when they are tense and afraid? That's what I'm up against. I feel like I'm being watched like a hawk by all parties involved. Customers, more than ever, are worried that I am trying to pull a fast one on them by recommending they order more than just a lettuce leaf, or that we might be trying to sell their jacket on ebay whilst they dine. The eyes of the restaurant have found new time to monitor side work duties as though my side work duties include handing out meds at the hospital (So I forgot a few patients... they'll recover).
If waiting tables becomes some sort of uptight affair, I might join the circus. THATS A WARNING TO ALL OF YOU. No one really wants to see me as a bearded lady for I only have one beard hair (so far, and also I'm aware that one is too many for most), and I have no flame swallowing or throwing skills. Really though, I hope that fear doesn't get the better of us. I'm here to feed people and "make them feel not annoying", and that's nothing to get in tizzy about.
Meanwhile, staff meal on saturday night made me feel all better. We had Kanas City ribs with cornbread. YES PLEASE!
Jacky Scrapple had a big helping of garbage for dinner last night while Kevin and I were out eating our own feast (holy crap did I have baked spicy dungeness crab? Yes I did.) and today it appears as though he isn't feeling well. It's time for a grass grazing walk.
Please, go out for lunch or dinner today and ask your server if they have ever considered modeling. Hot or not, they need the boost.