31 August 2011

quinoa salad and fall plans

Well, I was lucky and never lost power during the hurricane.  The lights flickered and I could hear transformers surging, but power stayed on and I felt very fortunate.  My big shade tree also held her own (with a few more branches down).  Other people in the area were not as fortunate and have been enjoying cold showers and major cleanup.  My friend Cathy kept power as well and hosted a 'Perishables Party' where those without power could bring food in danger of thawing to cook and share.  It was a lot of fun - pizza, burgers, random dips, and lots of wine - and much needed stress relief after our week of natural disasters.

Although I didn't end up needing it, I did prepare food I could eat without heating:  black bean, corn, tomato, and quinoa salad based on this basic recipe (but with a little tweaking - no cilantro, scallions, or sugar; lime juice/zest instead of lemon; and adding red pepper flakes, cumin, and fresh corn cut from the cob).  Served last night for dinner on a bed of organic baby arugula.  Perfect.

Although I was lucky, my museum was not as fortunate.  No one was hurt but there was major tree damage and loss of power.  This means no climate control, which for museum people is a pretty bad thing - humidity control is key.  So I've put a nasty note on the museum entrance insisting that doors stay closed unless necessary to maintain the climate; and am keeping fingers crossed that power is restored sooner rather than later.  In the meantime, I am working from home on projects I've been putting off - like sorting pictures from my England trip!

This morning on my run I was a little chilly.  The air is still humid, but has a decidedly 'crisp' feel.  Can't wait to pull out cozy throws and the fluffy duvet for the bed.  Working on a plan with some local friends to rent a mountain cabin later this fall.  Definitely looking forward to that - warm sweater, big glass of red wine, fireplace.


L. said...

I saw the photos of Irene's wrath on Facebook today and am just in awe...so glad that no one was hurt and that none of the building incurred any damages as well.

Gretchen said...

Thanks L. We were very lucky!

Jessica said...

I'm so sorry about your shade tree. Thank you for another yummy recipe. I'm looking forward to making quinoa for the first time.