Let’s talk for a moment about Mother Nature.
We’re in a bit of a drought situation around here. It hasn’t really rained here in weeks. Oh, there have been the occasional drops here and there, and sometimes the distant rumble of thunder makes those who don’t know any better hopeful for a washing of the air and a soaking of the ground. But we’re minus on rain, and will be until the real summer rainy season starts.
Until today, that is – the one day when clear (or slightly overcast) skies would have been most welcome, we get a typhoon. And I mean that, literally. The storm that rolled in brought lightning, hail, and wind that blew over tables and chairs outside. It was a nice change, and cooled things down pretty well, but of all the days, it was the day of the Big Bash. But some good came of it: everyone was driven inside, and it gave people a chance to talk with one another and eat more food.
Speaking of food, did you know that one serving of Publix prepared spinach dip is 2 tablespoons, 90 calories (80 of which are from fat)? the reason i mention this is only because I happen to be munching my way through some crackers with that dip, plus a lot of water.
The food. Goodness.
Got up this morning and got a fire started in the smoker, then tossed the ribs on. I had picked up a couple of rib racks, and let me tell you, those are the handiest things. All the slabs went on the grill in one shot, and they smoked away for just under four hours. This morning, the skies were clear and it was hot, so the ribs finished a bit fster than usual. While those were going, I made and prepped a bunch of other things, and when 2 PM rolled around, people started flowing in. Several people brought more food – desserts and a fruit salsa/dip, specifically. For the most part, though, the food was that we had prepared for everyone else.
And it was a blast.
I counted 30 adults and half a dozen or so kids, so our estimates of 30-40 people were spot on.
People started drifting out the door around 6:30 or so. I had prepared 12 pounds of shrimp, boiled, and another 4 pounds in a marinade (honey, soy sauce, chili-garlic sauce, and lime juice), only about 1.5 pounds of which was actually grilled before the torrential rains came. All 13.5 pounds were gone by the time the first guests departed. Since there was still another 4 pounds in the freezer, and the remainder of the marinated shrimp, I went ahead and prepared the rest, boiling the 4 pounds and sauteeing the marinated shrimp since it was still raining off and on and the open charcoal was now soaked. That batch vanished before the last of the guests left, and we are left with exactly zero leftover shrimp.
Of the ribs, there are a few chunks left. I told myself I would taste my ribs for the first time since I started making them, but I did not do that this afternoon. I’ll get to it on the leftovers. The guacamole was, if I must say so myself, excellent. It takes me awhile, and a lot of water, to eat an entire chip with some guacamole, but I had some, and could actually taste it.
I added a crab dip to the menu this afternoon, and had a taste of that – good stuff. That disappeared fairly rapidly, and there is none left for midnight snacking. However, I do have more crab and the other ingredients that go into it, so I may just have to make another batch tomorrow and have a more expansive tasting.
My brother requested zucchini at about the same time I was getting the remainder of the shrimp done, so I had him slice it lengthwise into flat strips, drizzled it with olive oil, gave it some salt and pepper, and then sprinkled shredded parm-reg on it. Alas, I did not get a taste of that, as it was all eaten while I was putting the shrimp into a steam tray. But, as with the crab, there’s another batch of zucchini in the fridge, and may be just the thing to eat beside a freshly made round of dip.
And then, there were the people. I think we had a good mix of people, both family and not, and although I had to endure lectures and nagging from certain parties about my eating issues (I did dump a cup of formula down the tube during the festivities), it was great to talk to everyone and listen to them talk to one another. It seemed to me that everyone had a good time and enjoyed themselves, and that really is the point, isn’t it?
My eating tally for the day: four shrimp. A few crackers and spinach dip. A chunk of watermelon. Three cucumber slices in a creamy dill sauce. A few tortillas and guacamole. A grape, peeled (unfortunately, I have no one to peel grapes and feed them to me, so I had to do this myself). A tomato wedge. A small piece of fried grouper. A small amount of crab dip. A cup of formula.
Before any lecturers start making the rounds of their circuits, I’ll be the first to admit this is not enough. As I pointed out to a dear friend when getting another one of Those Looks, all of this will get better. The moving-in phase of the move is over and things are fairly normal, the Big Bash has come and gone, and I’ll be getting back to a more normal schedule, so my eating will follow suit. But, until I can eat sufficiently, I’ll have to keep the tube as a fallback position, as the most recent weigh in bothered even me and my lackadaisacal attitude toward my fluctuating weight.