My friend Jamie came over for lunch today with her 18-month-old daughter Ivy. They spent the morning at a music class for toddlers and headed over afterwards, wearing complimentary down coats and smelling like cold morning air. I put out an odd assortment of foods for them including smoked turkey and white bean soup, beet salad, cheeses leftover from the Food Blogger Potluck, my friend Wendy’s homemade pickles, some sliced apples and pears and a cluster of grapes.
Jame and I sat down to eat at the table, while Ivy jumped around. She’d come over and sit on her mom’s lap for awhile, take a few bites and hop down. I have two child-sized chairs at my coffee table and she’d sit on one for a while and them the other. We stacked pieces of bread in a tower and she happily accepted the bits of pickle I handed her. Most impressive was that she ate her weight in beets, loving the dark sweet root vegetable that I had slicked in a dressing of balsamic vinegar and olive oil.
We talked as Ivy danced around us, catching up on our recent events as well as news from the lives of our mutual friends. After about an hour, Ivy walked to her stroller, levered herself into the seat and started buckle herself in. Jamie looked over at her and asked, “Are you ready for your nap?” Ivy nodded her head emphatically and said, “Yes!”
Quickly doing a little bit of clean up, Jamie shrugged into her coat and leaned in to give me a hug. Afterwards, I leaned down and gave Ivy a scattering of kisses across her face that made her smile and tuck her head down into her neck. She blew me an air kiss and they were off. On days like this there is nothing about life that I don’t like.
Damn that kid is cute!
Hehe, I have the same book!
What a nice day! I’m happy to hear the pickles are still being enjoyed! I had a few left here and I think I need to start making them more regularly since they are so delicious and easy to make.
Recipe adapted from Cucumber Salad in The Pleasure of the Vietnamese Table:
1/2 c. rice vinegar (or white vinegar) (you can used pre-seasoned sushi vinegar,just leave out the sugar and season salt to taste)
3 Tbsp sugar
juice of 2 limes
1/2 + tsp. salt to taste
1 small clove garlic, crushed
fresh hot peppers, seeded and julienned (amount of pepers can determine spiciness)
6 pickling cucumbers cut into spear shapes
1/2 c. shallots, thinly sliced
1/4 cup (or more) chopped cilantro
Combine vinegar, sugar, salt, lime juice, garlic in a large bowl.
Add rest of ingredients, toss to coat. Refrigerate overnight, tossing occasionally. The longer they brine the tastier they get. I haven’t had them last longer than a week since they are so yummy, so I am not sure about their shelf life.
What a day it was! I am glad to know you had as much fun as we did. We hope to see you again soon!