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Round Robin

September 23, 2009

• I’m looking for one or two good, easy appetizer recipes, preferably for things that don’t need to be kept hot. I need bring appetizers to a party on Friday night and to a memorial service that I probably can’t attend on Saturday. Any ideas? Bonus points for simple and inexpensive. Normally I’d just bring a nice plate of cheese and bread and fruit, but the party on Friday is part recipe exchange, so that seems like cheating.

• I am mystified by a recent friend request I’ve received on Facebook. The guy’s profile picture shows a middle-aged man standing next to a cardboard cutout of Isaac the Love Boat bartender. I’m pretty sure I’ve never met this person, but the friend request came with a one word message just intriguing enough to make me wonder: “Salinger.” Because someone who mentioned Salinger might know me. On the other hand, they might just know anyone who was once a disaffected over-intellectual teen. Which is probably a lot of people. In any case, I’m still trying to reconcile Isaac Washington with Salinger. Any ideas? Shuffleboard in the Rye?


• I’ve always thought of writing cover letters as puzzles to be solved. The trick is finding the magic thing to say that is the secret password, an Open Sesame. But after working on a bunch of letters this week, it reminds me more of the early process of buying a house. In order to get to the point of making an offer, you have to go inside the house and walk around, imagine yourself there. What would it be like to be in this space? What would you do with each room? How would you arrange the furniture? And by the time you finish trying it on for size, you’ve convinced yourself it’s the thing you want most. Then the worry begins: will the sellers take your offer? Will the bank give you a loan? Will the house pass inspection? There is so much uncertainty after that overwhelming initial investment. Writing cover letters forces me to imagine me happy in a place I’ve never been before. Sometimes I’m very, very convincing, at least to myself. So far, though, no bites.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. freshhell permalink
    September 23, 2009 10:43 am

    You could make the fruit “snack bars” on my recipe page that I made for the kids. If you cut them in small squares they’d pass for an appetizer though they aren’t savory. They are good, though, so I doubt anyone would care if they accidentally ended up with the desserts.

  2. September 23, 2009 11:56 am

    Homemade hummus? Beer-cheese spread? Lentil Pate? Marinated veggies? Black & White Bean Salsa? Watermelon Salsa? If you want a recipe to one, let me know.

  3. September 23, 2009 12:43 pm

    If you can get smoked sturgeon, find a smoked salmon pâté recipe and substitute the sturgeon. It’s amazing.

  4. freshhell permalink
    September 23, 2009 3:16 pm

    I also have a good recipe for artichoke dip.

  5. September 23, 2009 8:58 pm

    Ron makes a lot of pico de gallo this time of year. The recipe is in the song by Trout Fishing in America (which we like because the rhymes with gallo include Ohio, as in even the gringos up here like it)
    lime juice

    Chop it all up until it looks and tastes right to you, and serve with tortilla chips.

  6. September 24, 2009 2:29 pm

    Lots of good ideas here. Jeanne, if my tomatoes would ripen already, I’d do pico de gallo. I love that song, by the way. Freshhell, I made artichoke dip two years ago for this party (it’s an annual event), so I don’t want to do that one again, even though it is one of my favorites and totally easy. Hmm. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to make it again. Eleanor, I’m not sure I can find smoked sturgeon, but smoked salmon is a good idea.

  7. September 25, 2009 1:38 pm

    Well, I decided to make baba ghanouj and hummus, mainly because I had all the ingredients for both in the house. I made a double batch of hummus so there’s plenty of extra for the memorial service. A quick run to the store for pita and parsley and I’m in business. Thanks for all your advice! I’m going to try some of these other recipes some other time. Especially those fruit bars, freshhell. Those sound delicious. Although I’m pretty sure my kid won’t eat them either.

  8. freshhell permalink
    September 28, 2009 3:18 pm

    Don’t make the fruit bars for AJ, make them for yourself. They are TOO GOOD for children.

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