Ugh. I need a drink just thinking about it.
Luckily, in 8th grade I met the amazing Kimberly Martin who made the end of my Junior High years much more tolerable....even sort of fun. (And, bear in mind, I did manage to make some awesome friends in 7th grade as well; don't worry, I wasn't a complete outcast).
Kim has been a constant in my life since we were 14; some years more constant than others thanks to college, crazy 2-year relationships (ahem, ME) that somehow manage to isolate you COMPLETELY from your friends and loved ones, and distance. Now she lives in Brooklyn and last week she came for a visit! SO MUCH TO CELEBRATE! Again, this post promises to be picture-heavy and longer than most, but it's definitely worth it!
In keeping with the summer theme, we threw a Bazooka BBQ to honor Kimberly and re-unite the fearsome foursome (high school was so much friendlier than junior high).
|Excerpt from a note written by Kimberly to me in high school, circa 1996 (used as the image for the BBQ invite)|
|THEN (circa 2000 or 2001?) Me, Kim, Jared and Craig|
|NOW (circa last Wednesday) Kim, Jared, Craig and me|
Those outfits were unplanned. I think it's all those years of practicing ESP...we just sort of knew what to wear. I would also like to mention that I am much happier without orange hair.
The barbecue menu was a doozy, but luckily everyone contributed and we had enough food to feed an army of Spanish Conquistadors. There were homemade hamburgers, kaleslaw, veggie kebabs, and every kind of fake hot dog you can imagine. The event was highlighted, however, by the delicious homemade desserts; strawberry rhubarb pie and rainbow cake.
The hamburgers were made from a recipe I found in my early days of veganism. I used to live in Jared's living room and instead of sleeping I would watch one of two channels. One night/early morning I stumbled upon a cooking show. This guy was making all these vegan dishes and I was immediately drawn in, despite the fact that something seemed a little weird about the whole show. TURNS OUT it was THIS GUY, which explains the weirdness. However, this recipe is flawless. I have made it so many times and every time it is amazing.
Seven Seasonings Sausage Burger
1/3 c. yeast flakes
3/4 c. pecans or walnuts
2 tsp. onion powder
2 tsp. coriander
1 1/2 Tbsp. basil
1/2 c. Bragg’s liquid aminos or unfermented soy sauce
3 3/4 c. 1-minute oats
3/4 c. cracked wheat
1/4 c. raw sunflower seeds
2 tsp. sage
1 Tbsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. savory (optional)
1. In a large pot, bring 2 3/4 c. water and cracked wheat to a boil and cook for 15 to 30 minutes.
2. In a blender, blend the remaining 2 cups water, yeast flakes, liquid aminos, sunflower seeds, nuts and the seven seasonings. Blend well.
3. While constantly stirring, add the blender mixture to the boiling bulgur wheat and water. Return to a boil. Slowly add the oats to the mixture while stirring. Continue to cook and stir for 2 - 3 minutes.
4. Remove from heat, cover and let stand until cooled. Form mixture into patties and bake at 350 degrees for 30 - 35 minutes, then flip patties and bake an additional 5 minutes.
Just a note: I never have savory and thus usually don't use it. I did purchase some specifically for the burgers this go around but I didn't notice a huge difference. In the past I have substituted almonds for pecans or walnuts, as well as an extra 1/4 cup of sunflower seeds when I didn't have almonds, walnuts or pecans on hand. I kid you not, every time I make this it turns out amazing-- substitutions and all!
|Burgers, Kebabs and Beer. Perfection!|
|Photo and Kebabs courtesy of Matt|
And now for your viewing pleasure an array of photos taken throughout the course of the BBQ. Thanks to everyone who sent me their pictures since I kind of just stood at the grill for hours and drank beer. (Best BBQ ever!)
|The pool in all its glory.|
|Jared reading a sexcerpt from Humans, by Robert Sawyer to kick of the BBQ|
...Totally not uncomfortable...
|Just started grilling! 4 hours later & a little worn out|
I had baked the cake the afternoon before and frozen each layer. That evening I made a cream cheese frosting and while I frosted, Kim chopped fruit and worked on the pie crusts.
|Tower of Rainbow Goodness|
The rhubarb was grown right in my very own backyard! The strawberries were from Safeway, but that's okay; as I have said before it is practically next door which means it is kind of like being in the garden---proximity wise.
The morning of the BBQ we baked the pies, put some finishing touches on the food and prepared for the BBQ itself. Here are some more BBQ Pictures:
|Relaxing on the porch: Amanda, Kim and Jes|
|Meryl and Kim SO THRILLED FOR DESSERT!|
|Completed Pie and Completed Cake|
|Kim's beautiful Strawberry Rhubarb Pie - She's got TALENT!|
|The Rainbow Cake (Dedicated to NY)|