Sunday, September 28, 2008

Weekend Away and a Side Salad

I meant to finish this post and schedule it to post it's self while we took a weekend away. However, I only got the photos uploaded before I ran out of time to be late for our vacay. As usual, I thought I could use Ben's laptop, and as usual, we forgot some cord or some important thing to make it work. Oh well.

It actually was REALLY nice to take a small break from this blog. Not even when I was moving... Internationally... OVER THE HOLIDAYS... did I take a vacay. The only slight break I have taken in over a year was when we went to Fiji in April and I left the house thinking I could blog once we got there and the same thing with the laptop and the connection.... I know many of you are just as dedicated to your blogs, whether it be food, family, or something else, so I am just singing to the choir... but still!

We just returned today from a short trip to Canberra, the Australian Capital. They put on a Festival, called Floriade -which made me think it would either be about dental products or a new brand of Sports Drinks. It actually was neither, but instead a Springtime, flower festival with lot's of local products being sold under tents and quant shops by the lakeside.... There were no funnel cakes -boooo.... but it was fun just the same.

Since it was the Washington DC of Australia {Ignorant American? What? Where?} we got to see lot's of other great stuff like Parliament Houses and War Memorials and a Science and Technology Museums. Here's a little taste:

Little Boy and I at the War Memorial
Down the lane in the distance is the Old Parliament House, which we toured

We couldn't resist going home for a minute. It was so fun to drive around where all of the embassies were located. All of the actual embassy buildings were done in the style of their country, which made it really fun to ooh and ahh over.

For example, here was the Chinese Embassy

Me and Blue Steel {or is it Blue Steel and I?} at the Parliament House

Okay, on to the food. Now, I'm almost embarrased to admit this, but I am the kind of girl that was that freaky roommate of yours -you know, the one who ate food that sat out all night, or longer than that even. It was / is that magic formula: 1 part desparation, 2 parts laziness, 1 part 'myeah', 2 part cheapness, 1 part being resourseful / non-waster.

Imagine my delight when I left some of my easy homemade vinaigrette out for a day... or two, and it ripened into deliciousness. Eat it ripened, if you dare, or eat if fresh, just eat it.

Arugla {Rocket} and Pear Salad with Shaved Parmesan & Olive and Balsamic Vinagrette

1/2 - 1 pear

2 cups Arugala

pinch of salt

Parmesan Shavings

Wash and Dry the lettuce. Place in a bowl and give it a sprinkle / pinch of salt.

Slice the pear, and add to the lettuce. Pour desired amount of vinagrette and toss.

Serve with the pears arranged as desired on top. Garnish with Parmesan Shavings {Just use a knife or vegetable peeler and closely cut the block of cheese into little slices}

Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinaigrette

4 T. Olive Oil

3 T. Balsamic Vinegar

2 cloves garlic

2 T. Parmesan Cheese, grated with microplane

dash of salt

Add all ingredients together. Let sit out for 1-2 days to mature, or use immediatly if desired. Refridgerate left over dressing.

PS sometimes I add some fresh garlic, in with the ripened garlic, just for more flavor. You can also add in any herbs for flavor too, or keep it simple without. Add in more salt if it is bland {obviously}.


Prudy said...

Ooh, we're on the same wavelength. I'm posting a pear and arugula salad with parm tomorrow also. Although, my salad dressing wasn't seasoned, gotta admit. What a great trip. You are seriously leading a charmed life. You know that, right? I love the pic with your boy on your head, and I forgot to mention from that last post that your daughter appears to have an expert hair cut, gorgeous swishiness, reminding me that I haven't been in for a trim in too long. It takes an adorable five year old with a chocolate cupcake and an expertly cut hairstyle to pull me out of my housefrauness.

RecipeGirl said...

What a fun trip! I'm totally jealous. I need a weekend away somewhere.

That salad sounds like it's right up my alley. I adore pears in salad.

Aggie said...

Sounds like you had a great weekend away Natalie! Cute pics!

I love arugula, I was growing it earlier this year, but it didn't last long for some reason. I'm actually putting together my grocery list right now and am going to add it and make this salad! It looks so gourmet! Can't wait to try it.

Bellini Valli said...

This is such a seasonal salad Natalie:D

Lisa said...

Great pictures and great salad! No funnel cakes, WHAT? I just love funnel cakes.

We could've been roommates. Actually, my 2 roommates and I in college would always leave pizza out all night then eat it when we woke up. That was usually about noon time:)

mikky said...

looks like you guys had a great time... i guess that's what will matter the most, creating beautiful memories together as family... :)

Clumbsy Cookie said...

Looks like you had fun girl! It was almost like having a little world tour, no? The salad is so nice, I really have to start to put fruit in salads!

Adam said...

I knew you were on a trip, but you really did a great job keeping up on the blogging, I actually forgot... talk about sweet multitasking.

Freaky roommate? Nope, freaky is growing your own wheatgrass and telling your problems to plants :)

Oh and I second your college food habits... you might just have forgotten 1 part hungover :)

Satisfying my Sweet Tooth said...

Can I just tell you how jealous I am of your life?! All the fun traveling you get to do and places you get to see fascinate me! Really, I love my life, but yours sounds just way more adventurous. So, I was at my cousin Jenn's today and Jason was in from CO for the weekend, so of course we had to talk about you and our meeting up in the e-world. It was fun! And by the way, you (and me) are in luck because Steph and I live in Lehi and the house on the other side of me is for sale! I'll scare all the other potential buyers off until you get back to the states. How much fun would we have?! Yum on the salad too! I was craving pears after seeing it!

VeggieGirl said...

Such a lovely weekend!!

Your blog is positively breathtaking - I can't wait to read more!! :0)

Girl Japan said...

Oh, sure do miss Funnel Cakes- I had them when I was visiting Perth. I love pear in any type of salad setting, have you had the opportunity to try the Vietnamese pear salad? I was scrolling down and I noticed.. the damask print behind your lovely dish-- love it. I prefer Arugula to ice berg any day.

Bharti said...

You really are a dedicated blogger! I'm glad ur weekend away was fun! The salad looks great, I love that vinaigrette but have never tried it on pears. will try next time, thanks.

Jenny said...

What a fun weekend! Love all the cute pics of you and your family! Your salad looks perfect, I am digging the pears, yum!!!

Grace said...

cool trip! i'd love to see all that myself someday. meanwhile, no funnel cakes? what a travesty--no fair or festival is complete without a funnel cake stand. :)

Foodycat said...

That's one of my favourite salads! I'm not surprised you didn't get funnel cake in Canberra though!

Steph said...

Oh how much fun! It's always nice to have a weekend away. You are so lucky to have all that culture right next door! We don't have anything fun round these parts...maybe just because I've been here for 14 years. Blah blah blah. Anyways, I'm coming to Australia and moving next door! You won't mind, right?

Pam said...

What a fun adventure. It's great to see pictures of you and your family.

This is my kind of salad Nat. Simple, full of flavor and beautiful. Nice photos too!

Daziano said...

Nice recipe, and perfect photos too!!! I especially love the black damask pattern!

Deborah said...

What a fun vacation! I feel like I really need one right now, but I don't know how much fun I would have since I feel so large and out of energy!!

Gorgeous salad!

Maria said...

Glad you got away! Looks like you had a nice time!
The salad looks superb! Pears are in season right now and I love them in my salads. They add a nice sweetness!

Esi said...

Looks like you had a nice trip! I can't wait to get away at the end of the year, just for a few days. Nice light salad too!

The Blonde Duck said...

You are so brave!

Joe Horn said...

Sweet, it looks like you guys had a great time. Congrats on getting away. Nancy and I went to San Fran this weekend to get away, was great.

Sandy said...

What a great trip.
Salad sounds delish!

Bridgett said...

I recently had a salad just like this at a fantastic restaurant in San Francisco. Looks like you had a great weekend away. We always try to get away as often as possible. You always feel better when you come home, don't you?

Jill said...

This looks so gourmet and fancy, like something would order at a downtown restaurant. You are so creative, I would have never thought of bringing an idea like this home and making it for my family!

hot garlic said...

Thanks everyone! Much appreciated!

LOL Prudy. She gets a lot of comments on her hair. We call her our baby news anchorwoman, she has a blazer, watch out world, here she comes!

Thanks Recipe girl! Thanks Aggie -let me know how it goes!

LOL, thanks Lisa!

Your right, thanks Mikky!

Thanks Clumsy Cookie!

LOL Adam, as usual, Thanks!

Oh now SMST! Thanks goodness he doesn't live local and couldn't run home to grab embarrasing pics!

Thanks Veggiegirl! I've been meaning to make it to yours FOREVER!

Oh Me too Girl Japan! No, I haven't tried it Vietnamese style, sounds great!

Thanks Bharti and Jenny and Grace and Foodycat!

Come on over Steph, any time!

Thanks Pam and Daziano!

For sure Deb, take it easy!

Thanks Maria and Esi and Blonde Duck and Joe and Sandy and Bridgett and Jill!!

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