Sunday, August 8, 2010

Savoring Sunday- 1

Summer in southern California. Mornings cooled by onshore breezes.  With handkerchief clouds waving across the sky, daylight cusps just shy of definitely hot. Evenings are cool; perfect for dinner on the patio. Such is a my heaven, just a half-hour inland drive from the Pacific.

Work last week was marvelous. Much of it was invested studying how the Scottsdale based  Linthicum, learning how they make dreams real through building. Assigned by Western Art and Architecture to profile the firm, I lived the literary equivalent of rafting the Clark River in Montana. With discovery at every turn of a portfolio of remarkable range, my soul swirled in their collection's  depth and impeccable detail,  I was washed in waves of  awe and exhilaration.

My favorite approach to writing is like tasting wine; absent rush. Allow the story to decant. The first puppy-pant sip gives a first impression, not a total one. A break, followed by a savored swallows; such technique better involves the senses. When the rendering of the builder is finished, the resplendent layering of flavors will have revealed themselves. 

Time is a luxury in the business of writing. It must be by the Grace of  God that it appears just when it is most desirable. 

Last night was a break. Time to release the inner child. Fortuitous timing for  Gene Sasse's annual summer garden party.

 With so many garden flavor's at their peak, now  is the season for chopping and blending up tasty batches of everything. When the need is to prepare just adds to a couple cups ,the Cuisinart® 3-Cup Mini-Prep Plus Food Processor, nicknamed "Baby Cuisinart" is called to kitchen duty.

With a very full week behind and ahead, my offerings for the potluck were simple. A bottle of carbonated peach juice and celery stuffed two ways. One a cream cheese and olive concoction, seasoned like ranch dressing. The other, the childhood favorite peanut butter sweetened with lavender honey.

I never know who will show up at one of Gene's parties. Just that they will be artistic and endlessly interesting. During a chat with proessional story-teller Jim Cagan- his long-ago duties in the forest service at Yosemite- he worked with my husband's cousin Sid, long of Louisiana. Viva la "It's a Small Word."

I do not know whom to thank for having supplied the Filippi White Grenache blush wine. However- my eyes lit up at the sublime partnering of flavor with peanut butter stuffed celery. The taste made me, at age 55, all at once, woman and child.

Next Saturday, August 14th, historic Joseph Filippi Winery hosts a special opportunity to take part in a  Winery Tour and Grape Stomping

Outdoor images by Gene Sasse. Used with permission.

The prep device is available in party colors. Purchase on-line at Sur la Table.


  1. A summer garden party. How fun. Ah yes, a 'baby queez' as we call it. Wonderful little invention. Looking forward to reading your literary rendering of Linthicum's accomplishments.

  2. Lydia,

    I too am looking forward to reading your masterpiece!
    Gene's party sounded like a wonderful one. What else was there on the buffet table? Did everyone bring something?

    Remember I was with you that day in Pasadena at Sur La Tab and we both purchased that little baby blender gem. Didn't we both get it in red?
    Well, I am here to tell you that I just a week or so ago used mine for the very first time! Can't remember what I used it for but it was great! I always hesitated lugging out the big blender (except for the blended Margaritas):):). I also have a wonderful Kitchenaid "do everything" unit even kneads bread but alas I haven't used it for years! Well, you know me and cooking! :(
    Every time I see that picture of Gene's of the orange sky I swear it is the one I took from my back yard! They are always breathtaking!

    Glad you had a great time! Hope Ger is feeling better now.

    Hugs, Trisha

  3. Good afternoon to Oregon- Love the term ""Baby Queez

    and Trisha - You are correct. We haven't been out shopping together much- every time, memorable If your baby is "red" then that is one more thing we have in common!

    My husband gets quite excited when the commercial KitchenAide makes an appearace wth any of the plethora of attachments.

    He absoutey did not marry me for my cooking. But, he might now ):-

  4. What a beautiful location for a garden party...the pics describe it nicely. Your description of the stuffed celery paired with the Filippi vino alerted my taste buds. :) Childhood memories kicked in immediately. At family gatherings there was always a crystal divided dish for carrots, radishes, green onions and the stuffed celery with cream chesse and peanut butter fillings. A special bowl for green ripe olives as well as the black ones. Was there ever a child who did not push a few blk. pitted olives on the ends of their fingers?

    What a life!



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