As much as I — and my novelty-seeking, grew-up-in-a-country-without-chain-restaurants, perceives-everything-as-sociologically-fascinating mind — find places like IHOP and The Cheesecake Factory highly amusing, such dining experiences have nothing on the joy that is making and sharing lovely meals with people who are, by definition, the bee’s knees.
And so, for today’s instalment of 2013’s Cedar City adventures, I bring you my favourite homecooked meals. Bee’s knees included.
Guess what’s wonderful? Road tripping to Cedar City with Ryan, stopping for a post-drive beer at the local pub, making friends with a lass called Darrah at said pub, discovering that Darrah works at the coffee shop and not only remembers you from last year but remembers the exact drink you used to order (coffee with salted caramel syrup and soy milk, hey hey), heading to a house party, discovering Darrah is also at the house party, talking late into the night, getting invited for dinner the next evening, and then arriving the next evening at Darrah’s place with Ryan to find a magnificent feast is already waiting for you.
That last sentence was really long. So these are short. Ta-daa.
Darrah made us a lovely vegan tofu edamame stir-fry over fluffy quinoa, and an avocado, baby spinach, and sorrel salad. The red wine and homebrew chocolate stout we shared were perfect matches, and definitely had nothing to do with the following photo.
Nope, not one jot.
I really miss those faces.
Guess what’s wonderful? Asking your Dad back home for his secret/famous spaghetti bolognese recipe, and then spending an entire sunshining Utah afternoon chopping, measuring (where “measuring” means “a spoonful of this and a handful of that”, of course), and simmering the sauce into a heady, unctuous, complex, and thank-you-Dad delicious family pasta dinner for eight of your talented USF friends.
Bonus: leftovers make for a good breakfast the next day.
I really miss those faces.
Guess what’s wonderful? When you’re so happy talking and sipping rosé in the kitchen as Ryan whips up an Ottolenghi quinoa and sourdough salad from the cookbook you bought him for his birthday (not going to lie; that idea for a present turned out quite nicely for me) that you soon forget about your camera. Instead, you congratulate each other for deciding to add thinly sliced lemon (rind and all, hey hey) to the salad to increase the zing factor, and then you go to a performance of Twelve Angry Men that takes your breath away, and then you run into Darrah on the way to see your friends be awesome at REACH Presents: The Cabaret (where the songs give you All The Feelings), and everything is shimmeringly incandescent in your soul.
Guess what? It’s just as I said. Nothing can compare to the joy that is making and sharing lovely meals with people who are, by definition, the bee’s knees.