I’m beginning to think certain foods can encourage selective amnesia. For me, it’s tacos. I can usually stuff myself with Mexican food and reliably muster up a good taco appetite again not to long afterward. Like yesterday, when my friend Joanna and I were driving back to Seattle from a wedding in Helena, Montana. At about 2 p.m., we stopped at Taco del Sol in Missoula for big, heavy (but not that big and heavy) burritos, mine stuffed with deep-fried cod, black beans, cabbage, and white sauce with just the right balance of sweet and spice. At 4 p.m., Blizzards in Coeur d’Alene. At 6 p.m., we pulled in to get gas in George, a town just on the eastern side of the windy Columbia. In the corner of the gas station lot: a taco truck.
I think in many cases, the average person would think something like “Hey, I had Mexican food a few hours ago. I’ll remember this truck for next time.” But me, no, it was like Missoula never happened, and I headed straight for it. No memory of Mexican anything that day. Joanna looked at me like I’d kicked a puppy when I asked her if she wanted one. They were $1 each, and worth so much more: tender carne asada, tucked into small, soft corn tortillas with radish slices, cilantro, a good squeeze of lime juice, and this pico de gallo that brought so much delicious, spunky onion flavor down the hatch that I tasted it all the way back to Seattle.
But again, the forgetfulness. Despite the gastrointestinal strain, not at all helped by the wedding the previous night or the number of caffeinated beverages I’d consumed since crossing into Washington, by the time we crossed the river, I wished I’d bought four more. For safe keeping, you know? You never know when you’ll need a good taco. And if you’re like me, you probably don’t remember if you just did.
Anyway, the wedding was great. The bride looked fabulous, no one fainted, and the cake was actually good. There were a few minor mishaps: the photographer somehow failed to show up at the reception site, which meant that after an hour of anxious waiting on the part of the bridal party, yours truly had the opportunity to exercise her shutter finger and inherent bossiness ad nauseum. Playing wedding photographer was fun, and relatively simple because there was only one family to photograph. The groom’s family–hope they never read this–actually missed all the photos, because they went (I am not making this up) directly from the church to a bar, and showed up to the reception two hours late. Needless to say, the groom was displeased.
Somehow, though, the wedding was still all that, still mushy and charming and teary and a good reminder of all the good there is in the world.
Here are a few shots (this first one, of course, proves that chocolate can also cause amnesia; the kid didn’t stop eating it all weekend):
Plus, when we found out there were no wedding crashers, we decided to bring our own into the picture:
Dana may be surprised when she receives a photo album of these little guys (which Joanna bought for me to top my wooden spoons) signing the guest book, waltzing on the dance floor, dipping their little hands into the chocolate fountain, climbing up the side of the wedding cake, drinking champagne, etc. (Joanna had to do something while she was waiting for the photographer not to show up.)
We stayed at a little hotel in downtown Helena that has a new restaurant, Artemis, which had what appeared to be a novel breakfast idea: breakfast bruschetta. Of course, it’s really just eggs on toast, in their case eggs with mozzarella and pesto on a big fat slab of pain de campagne, drizzled with hollandaise sauce. But somehow it seemed so romantic, so interesting.
This morning Joanna and I rolled out of bed much later than we should have, and made our own version with olives.
Olive Breakfast Bruschetta
Recipe 176 of 365
Brush a fat slab of olive bread with olive oil, and toast it until lightly browned. For each slab, chop a handful of kalamata olives and mix them with about an ounce of goat cheese, and smear the spread onto the toast. Press a few arugula leaves into the cheese. Scramble up a couple of eggs (whisked with a tablespoon of whole milk, salt, and pepper), stirring in a handful of halved cherry tomatoes and a good sprinkling of Parmesan cheese just before they’re done. Pile the eggs on top of the arugula, and serve hot.
And Banana (of course I named him) has a new home in my kitchen: