Cooking with J

10 Jul

There are friends and then there are friends who help shape one’s personality- for me, Jason belongs to the latter group. He is a friend, a confidante, and a brother figure rolled into a 5’11”(?) gentlemanly gentleman who always dishes out the right amount of honesty. Other than Ryan and my Dad, J is the other man I go to when I need a particular male perspective. He’s handy, that J.

We had a rare moment today. We actually got to spend nearly half the day together (~10 hours, but who’s counting)! He arrived after noontime and stayed until 10p. We talked and listened to music as we prepared lunch…

Lunch was pollo al ajillo (chicken garlic) and champiñones al ajillo (mushroom garlic). I was responsible for the chicken dish and he for the mushroom.

Garlic and spice. Like Ryan and me, he and his significant figure are fond of both. We made sure to make enougn so we’ll have plenty of leftovers to share with our “sig figs.” Thus to respect everyone’s tastes, we made the dishes with extra garlic and heat.

See J (mostly his hand/s) preparing the makings for the mushroom garlic:

Slicing the mushrooms

With toasted chili pepper flakes fresh from the oven

Mincing garlic


Champiñones al ajillo (mushroom garlic)!

See my chicken garlic being prepared:

Skinned and boned chicken liberally dusted with paprika

Whole garlic cloves frying in oil

Batch frying the chicken pieces (after the pieces have browned, a bay leaf, brandy, and chicken stock were added)

Pollo al ajillo (chicken garlic)!

…we watched “Ratatouille” while having lunch, and then we cleaned up. Not long after, I began the preparation for dinner, while he played video games (he did offer to help but I declined).

Dinner was spaghetti puttanesca. My favorite! The combination of spice from the chili pepper flakes, saltiness from the anchovies, and sourness from the tomatoes and capers make it a sassy pasta dish.

See the sauce simmering.

See J (again with the hand) garnishing his pasta with parmesan.

…then we ate and watched the first 15 minutes or so of “Super Troopers” so I could point out his look-alike. Uncanny resemblance, really.

Then we played Carcassonne and I ended up eating his dust as he won 4 out 4 games. Next, I showed him how to play Catan. After all the gaming, he insisted on helping with the clean up. I wouldn’t let him, but that didn’t stop him from washing the pan, etc despite my protests. And then just as we were saying our goodbyes around 9p, we got pulled into another conversation and ended up chatting until 10p.



I had a swell time. A really swell time.




3 Responses to “Cooking with J”

  1. Jason 11, July 2008 at 3:07 pm #

    I’m honored and a little flabbergasted. Your pictures turned out great (hands and all). What a wonderful day – thank you again! Much love.

  2. eConsultant 11, July 2008 at 5:35 pm #

    Food with Allium sativum and Capsicum annuum = Mmm, mmm, mmm.

  3. Claire 12, July 2008 at 3:05 pm #

    For a minute there I thought the manly hands were yours…I thought to myself – hmmm…did Washington weather do this to her – but then I came to my senses and realized that they weren’t yours. Now I can enjoy the delicious looking photos, the quirky article, and the meal I can’t really taste (but it looks quite good anyway) without worrying about manly hands ;). As the host of “Diner, Dinners, and Dives” would say – that is good eats.

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