Monday, April 28, 2014
Just over a week ago, we returned from meeting up with my sister and brother and their families in Georgia at a resort on a shimmering lake. The rolling hills of spring’s green-gold were a picture of tranquility. I loved being in the South – the sweet tea; the drawls in the speech around me that spoke to my reptilian brain. I became the freckled, pigtailed southern girl who couldn’t hear in my own voice what it was I was teased for when I moved to Alaska.
The week was like one long dinner party, aside from the constantly startling fact that none of us were in a kitchen. Conversation was an everflowing stream, as it always is with this group; sometimes we found ourselves still at the table when it was time for the next meal. I’m pretty sure there were grits on every menu we saw, every time of day. Something fried was always available; sometimes unavoidably so. We were surprised by the trout-like flavor of atlantic salmon.
I haven’t laughed that much in a long time. My siblings understand me differently than anybody else. I'm always surprised to hear the differences in our perspectives about childhood events, so much so it is sometimes hard to believe we we're talking about the same experience.
We came home to our lilacs and wisteria in bloom, and the last of the magnolias. Easter Sunday, bleary eyed from jetlag, Alexi dusted off the grill while I sat and ate Cadbury Mini Eggs.
The past two weekends, we didn't leave the neighborhood once we were home. Both weekends, we watched X Men movies. Movie night is almost always a variation of something similar; I’m outnumbered. I make popcorn and do my best to create frequent stretch break opportunities for myself.
½ cup canola oil
1 cup popcorn kernels
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
In a large pot, turn on the heat to medium, and combine the popcorn, canola oil, paprika, salt, cumin, and cayenne. Stir well, coating the popcorn evenly. Cover the pot, and shake it back and forth over the burner until most of the kernels have popped. The popping should slow to one pop every couple of seconds after 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl; add additional salt as desired.
Yield: 4 servings