I’m not going to lie. Living in California friggin’ rocks. I kind of feel bad for gloating, but I really shouldn’t, because it’s not like I made California awesome while simultaneously sabotaging every other state to ensure California’s status as great. Is it my fault that we have great weather?
And to end the bragging before the world decides to prove me wrong about Californian weather (the wind is currently trying to rip the palm trees from the ground), my point is that when the weather is nice outside, barbeques are the way to go. They’re easy and tasty, not to mention they’re just a great way to hang out with friends.
Generally when someone says barbeque, we think of huge events in parks or in backyards or on the beach, but it doesn’t have to be like that. At the apartment I’m living in now, all we have is this small stoop area, but it’s plenty of space for our hobbit of a grill. And while we wait for the coals to burn and later for the food to cook, we can just turn on some music, crack open a few beers, and chill on our semi-porch. Nothing beats it.
Typically, barbequing involves a lot of meat and bread and all of that tasty stuff, but as I mentioned in my previous post, my roommate Jessica is vegetarian. We had also bought a giant bag of artichokes from Costco that had been occupying a good portion of our fridge (taking up precious beer space), so we decided we’d forgo the meat and just grill some artichokes and other veggies.
The artichokes were easy enough. We just cut them, cleaned out the insides, and covered them with lemon juice, olive oil, and salt and pepper.
Here’s what our meal looked like:
1. Rice. With two and a half Asians in our apartment (a new sitcom, perhaps?), it’s only natural for us to have a rice cooker. And because I found some leftover Basmati rice buried in the back of one of the cabinets, I decided to go rice instead of bread.
2. Sauce. Or sauz and we like to call it. I put together this creation using a lot of sweet hot mustard (that brand with the beaver thing on it), half-melted chives cream cheese, softened goat-cheese, and a little bit of olive oil. (If you want a good sauz for artichokes, I also recommend mayonnaise and soy sauce. It sounds gross, but trust me, it’s good.)
3. Grilled vegetables. Since only grilling artichokes was boring, we decided to throw on some zucchini, eggplant, onions, and tomatoes. We just put them on some skewers we had lying around and tried not to burn them.
4. Sauz that Brandon made. It was an olive oil-based sauz, which made for a good contrast to the creamy sauz I made. His had (in addition to the oil), chopped garlic, lemon juice, and oregano.
As for the other stuff on the table… if you must know, that purple stuff in the bowl is cranberry sauce and the tupperware has kale in it. They’re both Jessica’s property, so it’s best just not to ask.