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I recently stopped by Fortune Cookie to pick up some foodstuffs.  Oriental foodstuffs, that is – as if you didn’t figure that out already.  I mean, come on, Fortune Cookie.  You know they’re not selling gnocchi here.  Cute-but-trite store names aside, I love going to this place.  It’s your typical asian grocery store.  The aisles are skinny and packed tight with more brands of soy sauce, mirin & rice wine than you could imagine being on one shelf.  Noodles are in every shape and size, and made of rice, buckwheat flour, or tofu.  And would you like those fresh, dry or frozen?  Because they have it.  And, instead of tomatoes and cucumbers in the veg section, there are fresh bunches of bok choy (bok choy, baby bok choy, Chinese bok choy…), huge daikon radishes, packages of brown & white beech mushrooms.  Not hungry?  Maybe you need a new dim sum steamer, or a pack of 50 chopsticks, or some sake.  

On one of my recent trips to Fortune Cookie, I had the pleasure of meeting the owners.  

“$13.99” owner said. 

So, I handed him my credit card.  He swiped the card, read the front of it and quickly looked at me with an interesting grimace. 

“Cara.  Your name?  That’s not very Asian,” owner said. 

“Right.  Ok.  Well, that’s my name,” I replied with a smile.  I didn’t want to jump into the I-was-adopted details at the moment.  What did he expect?  Ling?  Sumiko?  Yin? 

“And, what’s your name?” I asked.

“David.  And that’s my wife, Donna.”

Well, well…that’s not very Asian.

In a relationship, you often do things by default of being with that other person.  Not that you hate it.  Not that you love it.  But, you do it because you like being in a relationship with that person – and that’s what they are into.  Like going to watch The Proposal when you feel neither romantic or comedic.  Or stopping for lunch at a sushi restaurant – when you don’t eat sushi.  Or dieting.  

I’ve been on a diet by default for four – or is it five? – weeks now.  The Pace household has been eating on the leaner side these days.  Given the humidity down here, I can’t imagine why we’re not just sweating off the pounds.  I was never much into saunas.  Anywho, we’ve been eating whole wheat everything, eggs, turkey, cheese, fruit, flaxseed….  The list goes on.  And ice cream, cookies & cakes of any sort haven’t touched our kitchen in awhile now.  (Well, ok, I did sneak a small package of Maria biscuits in the grocery cart last week.)  The upside is that JP is doing a lot of cooking these days.  He’s even taken to dish duty more than usual – which I wholeheartedly appreciate.  (Dishes suck.  But I can’t stand to see them in the sink at night, so I must do them before I go to bed every night.)  And, the diet seems to be working.  For JP, at least.  Me?  I’m trying not to count anything…

However, I cheated recently.  On my diet, that is.   In a moment of weakness, I grabbed some food to go at Wendy’s.  Come on, who can ignore the vanilla frosty!?  And when the fries are good – they’re goood.  It was so gross and good at the same time.  I’ve decided this is why fast food exists – to let us know that we’re human and can succumb to the marketing powers that be at food chain companies, and at the same time, make us appreciate real, fresh food.

After I received my food, I thought, “Should I tell JP?”  No.  I’m sooo cheating right now.  Damn, this french fry tastes good.  But, not really.  But, I’ll have one more just to be sure.  Ugh, it’s sooo salty.  Salt is good.  Maybe I should go to the gym today?  Wait, I don’t go to the gym.  I mean, do 2 visits in the last month count as “going” anywhere?  I’ll just take the stairs up instead of the lift.  That’ll do.        

 

So, that was my moral dilema of the week.  

Switching topics, it’s imperative that you all go buy Regina Spektor’s new album, Far.  I actually listened to the entire album on NPR, then picked up the CD on Sunday afternoon.  (Yes, I actually bought a CD.  Unwrapped the plastic carelessly, pulled out the disc carefully, and put it in the CD player lovingly.)

This morning I stopped at a local market in Lake Worth, FL – C&D Produce.  Fruits & vegetables of every kind were everywhere.  The selection included all your run-of-the-mill produce – tomatoes, apples, onions, potatoes… – but you could also find some things a little more…not-so-everyday?!  Long beans, chayote, eggplant (Indian & Chinese), jackfruit.  

And what else?  Rice!!  Lo and behold, tons of rice!!  The wave of Asian-ness came over me…I wanted to buy every kind of rice on the shelf and throw it in my rice maker.  Anywho, this made me laugh, and I was glad I had my camera on hand 🙂

 


I love to go out to eat.  And, with a new restaurant, I’m open to giving second chances.  I don’t judge upon first plate – unless, say, that plate has a pest or boot on it 😉  This week was my friend AR’s birthday, and we went to celebrate at a local eatery Jade Kitchen, which is in the historic Northwood neighboorhood (just a few blocks outside of downtown West Palm Beach – I love historic districts!).  

greek salad @ jade kitchen

greek salad @ jade kitchen

 
The first time I went to Jade Kitchen was also for a birthday dinner, and while I loved the atmosphere and food, I didn’t really get a chance to enjoy it.  In other words, I left with no substantial memory of the place – good or bad.  Now, though, Jade Kitchen is burned in my cerebral.  The menu was unique and satisfying for both veg-heads and carnivores – veal cheeks, scallops with pesto risotto, stuffed artichokes, spring pea ravioli, baked bucatini with mushrooms, shrimp spring rolls….  I love that the menu at Jade Kitchen is everchanging (and handwritten) – I guess depending on what’s good in the markets.  And I love that the walls are dressed with local art and the tables only amount to a dozen or so creating an intimate environment.  To top it off, no corkage fees for the BYOBs out there.   
 
And, what’s a Pace weekend without music?!  We checked out the Nine Inch Nails & Jane’s Addiction concert at the Cruzan Ampitheatre with my bro & sis.  NIN kicked things off with a, well, ok show (the show a couple of years ago in Jax was much better).  Fortunately, Jane’s followed up with a crowd-pleasing gig.  Perry Farrell looked and sounded great and of course, Dave Navarro was smokin’ (hot, that is).  The concert was also not without its very own crazy-dancing-lady (there’s always one!) who graced us with her stylish dance moves all night.  I tried to get her on film, but her moves were, I guess, too superior to be caught on tape 😉   
Jane's Addiction

Jane's Addiction

 
 
 

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