16 January 2011

Pureed thoughts

Today is a rather blah Sunday - haven't accomplished much besides going to the gym while Ben napped & Marcel weeded. Went to the gym four times this week but I'm still terrified to step on the scale tomorrow because I have not eaten so well this weekend. For my birthday this year, can all of you chip in & get me some willpower please? And I know it's boring to read my fitness & nutrition updates so I should just cut them out completely. I believe it was the wise prophetess Paris Hilton who said that you shouldn't talk to people about going to the gym, you should just let them assume you're naturally fit & don't have to work for it. She had a second piece of advice I liked too (I have no idea where on earth I heard or read all of this Hiltonesque advice that is slowly becoming my way of life apparently) - smile all the time because it makes you more attractive & everyone will assume you've got something interesting going on. I guess I already smile most of the time but that's because I'm a bit of a dope so maybe if I change my reasons for smiling then people won't think I'm dopey & will just assume I'm having a torrid affair or am secretly a gazillionaire who likes to slum it at Erina Fair mall.

I've decided I need to update the long list of blogs I try to visit everyday. I'm finally getting sick of all the lovely, adorable, sweet as sugar cottagey places that have daily updates of what new thing they found by the side of the road & painted white or grey or some washed out shade of aqua if they need a punch of color. I believe Ashley's white phase has officially passed. Not that I ever actually lived it & honestly I still love the look & don't mind it in magazines but the blog folks drive me bananas with their "Oh, just found this little jewel at an op shop & had leftover Caribbean Dream paint from my last project so slapped it together & now my bedside table looks like it's permanently on holiday ... especially when I stack these empty vintage suitcases under it & put a hydrangea in the vase on top." Turds. ALL OF THEM.

So in my latest voyage to the library, I picked up Jessica Seinfeld's Deceptively Delicious book. Did I tell you we met her once? She was delightful. (It's a long story.)(Really it's not but I'm too lazy to tell it.)( I could have already told it by now, huh?)( Oh, I'll just tell it at the end of this post.) So yes, it's the book where she purees lots of veggies & sneaks them into recipes so you can't taste them. No she doesn't think they should replace visible veggies on the plate but just extra ones as your kids get used to veggies to make sure they're getting lots of nutrition. I am making her brownies tonight. WITH SPINACH & CARROT PUREE. They're downright healthy apparently. Well, I heard a rumor from myself that they're practically diet & exercise on a plate so how can I say no? They may be a disaster but she swears they're very tasty. In any case, if they're even the slightest bit successful I'm taking them to a Golden Globes red-carpet viewing party tomorrow. Okay, it's just 3 of us & a TV plus one well-behaved child & Ben but anything that resembles a social event for me I just call a party because it's a reason for me to celebrate. Beware Nic, I may be bringing some terrible brownies!

I realize Mrs. Seinfeld is a million bazillionaire with her lovely husband, Jerry, so perhaps her kitchen equipment didn't cost $30 at Big W but I have doubts about my blender's abilities now. It took ages to puree that stupid spinach & carrots. On the other hand, my awesome little bamboo steamer is the greatest $5 purchase I've ever made. Steamed like a dream - it should really have a chat to its blender neighbor about picking up its game. And really, I don't advise steaming or heaps of blending or standing up or anything else taxing on such a muggy day like today. I should have been swimming but no. So now I have 1/2 cup pureed spinach & 1/2 cup pureed carrots so just have to do absolutely everything else like using a double boiling system for my chocolate & sifting stuff without a sifter & possibly other things I'm not prepared for. All of this so I can have a bloody brownie that I can convince myself works on my diet. Oh crap, I'm not supposed to be talking about my diet am I? I'm just naturally this svelte. Hmmm ... might have to keep this tactic going for a while longer until I actually have the kind of body where people would wonder how I keep in such shape.

And of course all the recipes are American so they're in the standard measurement world. What is it called again? Uhhhh ... hmmmm ... I want to say royal but I know that's wrong. Imperial? Why am I doing this? Anyway, ever since screwing up my height conversion to the metric system, effectively making me as tall as a garden gnome, thus also giving me the BMI of Curly from the Three Stooges, I have been a mite paranoid & check my conversions a few times over. This only adds more frustration to the mix (I wish I had more cooking puns up my sleeve).

Next time I do one of her recipes I might make a vide of it for your viewing pleasure. I am not trying to say anything bad about her recipes - they are actually quite easy if you have a brain or any knowledge of cooking. So basically anyone but me. And she dedicates an hour a week to doing all her pureeing for the upcoming days. That's right, every Sunday night you can find Jerry Seinfeld in his kitchen with her pureeing veggies & discussing their schedule for the week. I really need to stop reading all the personal anecdotes in this book before I cross into stalker zone.

Here's my Jessica Seinfeld story - brace yourself, it's thrilling:
My 22nd birthday fell the month after September 11th. I know you're wondering how the world managed to focus on the ongoing drama in New York & Washington while I had a birthday to observe but that's just how life is, folks. Anyhoo, we heard about a charity comedy benefit called Stand Up for New York that sounded fairly awesome so looked into it. Tickets were ridonkulously expense, which is understandable as it was a charity benefit. We were poor college students but my dear boyfriend, who is now my dear husband, had good credit so shelled out the gazillion dollars for two tickets. We had the most beautiful couple of days in New York, which was still absolutely empty in the creepiest way possible & everyone was still being incredible warm to one another & happy to have tourists back in town. So we went early to the benefit at the not-so-shabby Carnegie Hall because we had no idea what we were doing. We waited outside for a while with a group of firemen because who doesn't want to hang around with heroes. While waiting, a cab pulled up & I said "Is that Jimmy Fallon?" then immediately realized I was wrong & that it was really an old lady. Door opened, it was Jimmy Fallon. We stalked him as he stood in line at the will-call booth. Marcel tapped him on the shoulder & this picture was taken:
Ashley & Jimmy, when he was still just the cute nerd on SNL.
Oh wait, I missed a kind of important bit of the story. When we first arrived to get our tickets a lovely lady opened the door for us & was super friendly & thanked us for our support (they were seriously not cheap tickets). I won't keep you in suspense, it was Jessica Seinfeld. Jerry was one of the performers. ANYWAY, I'll just keep going but you can tune out if you were only after the Jessica part of this never-ending yarn.

We hung out in the lobby for a while as everyone else showed up. There was another couple that obviously did not belong just like us & we were all stuck against the wall, a little shell-shocked at the wealth & fame streaming through the doors. There was that lady that's on Weekend Update with Jimmy Fallon (Tina Fey), the slutty woman that looks like she'd have a rich boyfriend/husband who oh crap was closely followed by her boyfriend/husband Donald Trump, Bill & Hillary Clinton, & loads more that I really can't remember for some reason. Was a fantastic night of comedy & we had such a good time mingling with the other half - I'm sure we blended right in.

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