Sunday, September 03, 2006

Another Busy Day Or Two

We wanted to make baklava.

So, I did what anyone who wants to make baklava does and googled some recipes. (What? You think I would look on my entire shelf of cookbooks? When there is an Internet?) I found a few that seemed decent, then I wandered around the frozen foods section for ten minutes and eventually found phyllo dough, then I drove to Rachel's house in the midst of gale-force winds and blinding rain because I wanted to make baklava that badly.

Did you know that phyllo dough is supposed to thaw in the fridge overnight? I didn't. But, between sitting in my backseat for an hour, then sitting on the kitchen table for another hour while Rachel and I had girly talk, the dough seemed to sense our impatience vibes and thawed itself in record time.

I can't vouch for the results, yet, (did you know that baklava is supposed to sit for 24 hours to a week before serving? I didn't) but the process was less annoying and fiddley than I thought it would be. It probably would have been worse if I was doing it alone, though. We worked out a pretty good system of one person placing a sheet of dough, and the other spreading the butter, and managed to double-team the thing quite well, I think. The recipes we found varied enormously on such facts as cooking times and water content of the syrup, but we fumbled through and settled on a nice middle ground. Tomorrow, we are having a baklava-eating party (I'm pretty sure that's how Labour Day is traditionally celebrated), so I'll let you know then how it turned out.

Then, because we couldn't bear to look at the gooey goodness and not eat it any longer, and because Jon's brother whom I have never met was visiting from New Hampshire, and because what good is a Saturday evening off if you don't use it to play board games, we headed over to Jon's house. We played a brainy word game, and we played a hilariously non-brainy drawing game, and we discovered that somehow, out of eight people, two will independently draw a penny farthing with a motor for "motorcycle" and THREE will draw a capsule with a sad face on it for "pilgrim" (bad pun, don't think about it too much). All in all a fun evening, much laughter was had, and Jon's brother apparently not only exists, but he and his wife are totally People I Would Hang Out With If They Didn't Live So Freaking Far Away. *Sigh* I know far too many such people.

We stayed up too late watching Freaks and Geeks, and I finally ended my day with sleep over 22 hours after I had started it with an opening shift at the store that I somehow forgot to mention in the flurry of baklava excitement when I started this post.

At church this morning, I chatted with a young couple who went to Houghton a few years after me, then I chatted with one half of that couple's younger brother who just finished at Houghton this year and somehow, although I graduated six years before him, we knew a lot of the same people because he was heavily involved in the Shakespeare Players. I hope they come back, because he was really cool. Maybe we can start our own little Shakespeare troupe here in the suburbs of Philadelphia, where there appears to be an uncharted Houghton magnet hidden somewhere in the basement of my church.

After church, because I decided that I haven't been busy enough recently, we had the pastor and his wife and his three small children over for lunch. We had a great time, and a great meal that I barely lifted a finger for, because I kept getting distracted by games of Connect Four, and my in-laws finished everything while I played. It was a great meal, and we had a really nice time visiting, and now I think I might just take a Sunday afternoon nap before I have to work the closing shift tonight at the store. Although I did seriously contemplate going back down into center city with Jon and his brother to get gelato this afternoon. I probably need the nap more, though.

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