This weekend was fantastic! Two of my best friends and their husbands were in town, and we spent the better part of three days catching up, eating great food and exploring the Twin Cities. Friday might have started out with snow, but by Sunday afternoon it was sunny and almost 70 – great weather for hanging out lakeside and showing out-of-towners how nice Minnesota living can be.
While I’ve been lucky enough to see my friend Lindsey a few times in the last year when she’s been in town for work, neither of us had seen our friend Sarah since we were in Seattle for her wedding a year and a half ago. We’d gotten used to yearly reunions, so we were well overdue for a weekend together. As is the case with most people I choose to associate with, we all love food, so we did our fair share of eating – both at favorite restaurants and at home.
The fun on Friday started with lunch at Cheeky Monkey with Sarah and her husband, and then Matt and I met Lindsey, her husband, and two other friends at Happy Gnome for dinner. Sarah and I were up first thing on Saturday to butcher and brine two chickens for that night’s fried chicken dinner party. Our night started with a round of Moscow Mules and Lindsey’s husband searching our pantry for fry-able things, wanting to take full advantage of two pots of hot oil. The boys ended up walking to the market for pickles and onions, which turned out to be the best idea of the night. Our plates of brown food and coleslaw were completely delicious, as were the desserts from Rustica that we ended the night with.
Sunday began with freshly baked croissants and Dogwood coffee in the Chemex followed by scenic drives through St Paul and Minneapolis. We stopped at Yum! for Sarah’s birthday lunch before taking a walk around Lake Calhoun. After spending part of our walk joking about people that take jumping photos, we found ourselves at the south end of the lake…taking jumping photos. For the record, it was only one jump that was captured in a series of photos, and I think our first and hopefully last attempt was a success. Besides, the stack of people planking photo that we had considered was way too hard to execute with so many people walking by and looking on.
Our next stop involved picking up pints of Graeter’s ice cream, which we all shared on a sunny dock over Lake Harriet before heading to the airport. It’s never fun to see a weekend that you’ve been looking forward to for months come to an end, but I had so much fun that I can’t feel too sad. Hopefully we’ll get together before another year and a half goes by. Linds, how’s fall in Cleveland?
Lemony chicken brine
Early morning chicken butchering
Bagel, egg, swiss, HOT SAUCE
Up close and personal with a lion at Como Park Zoo
Cornbread muffins and long-awaited sunlight
Pickle juice for the soul
Vodka, also for the soul
Men at work
Ladies at work
Sarah, Lindsey, me
Everything but the fried onions and pickles
Fried chicken, fried dill pickles, cornbread, slaw, pinto beans, fried onion rings
Time to eat
Croissants that were frozen last week and freshly baked this week
Lake Calhoun photo shoot
Kyle, Sarah, ducks, downtown Minneapolis
Lifting the birthday girl
I’ve still got it.