Em has been visiting for the past few days to celebrate her birthday with us. We picked her up in Nanaimo last Tuesday and, to be honest, I wasn’t quite sure it was actually my darling girl in the car since she was wearing a mask and sunglasses for the entire trip! Fortunately, when we arrived at Sideways Cottage, and she removed the glasses and mask, it was indeed my sweet Em!
She’s had a bit of a rough spring since she manages a bar in Vancouver–not the best profession during the plague times when everything’s been closed for months.
Last year, for her 30th birthday, I made her a kind of Advent calendar for her birth month. I was terrified she’d roll her eyes and think it was cheesy, but she was delighted with her present-a-day for twenty days, so this year, I thought I’d do the same thing to cheer her up a bit.
She had very few food requests for her visit, but she did ask for the Stranger Wings pizza, which we had last evening.
She also asked for James’ puttanesca pasta, but not until she was already ensconced at Sideways Cottage…and we’d bought NO fresh pasta! Not wanting to disappoint our Em, James proceeded to make fresh pasta on Thursday evening that was so delicious I can’t imagine that we’ll ever BUY fresh pasta again.
In any event, since Bid and Paul were also coming for dinner last evening, I decided to make a couple of regular pizzas as well as the Stranger Wings one. However, the SW pizza is VERY labour intensive, so I wanted to keep the regular pizzas simple. To that end, I made this super fresh, simple pizza sauce. It was delicious and SO fresh tasting!
Fresh Raw Pizza Sauce
- 4 cloves garlic
- 15 ounces of grape tomatoes
- 2 TBS olive oil
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Blend until smooooooth and creamy and then add a big handful of basil from the garden and pulse a couple of times.
So we had a fabulous Friday feast last evening for Em’s birthday. We ate outside on the deck because Em was worried about potentially exposing her auntie and uncle, who are both immunocompromised, to the virus. Bid made an AMAZING lemon layer cake for the birthday girl….
The layers were separated by lemon curd! SO delicious….but we made the mistake of letting Bid cut it after a couple of bottles of Prosecco–hahahaha!
And in case you were wondering what Emvent 2019—for Em’s 30th birthday—looked like, here you go. I bought a shoe holder to make it look a bit more like an Advent calendar, but ended up with three extra slots, so I included a few little gifts for her trip to Vegas.
And the song of the day is The Band’s “It Makes No Difference” because James recently told me that when he comes back from any trip into town (and he happens to be alone), he blasts it in the car and it covers most of the twelve-minute trip!