I bought a house recently. I was surprised by how affordable it was once I gave up my $600,000 a week avocado toast habit. It took a few weeks of searching, but I finally found a home that was right for me.
Has all I wanted, a guest room, office, finished basement for a home theater, and plenty of storage for board games and records. But the real selling point of the home was the kitchen. Large and roomy, with a six burner gas stove, double oven, and even a prep sink in addition to the regular sink. It even has a fireplace that really makes it feel homey.
Moving in was a chore, I detest moving of any kind, I’ve only done it a few times in my life and it’s been dreadful each time. With help from friends, and a reliable moving company, we got everything moved into the house in one day. Not unpacked, but at least it was all inside my new home. Setting up the kitchen was my top priority–I gotta eat after all. As I was unloading my kitchen gear and placing it into the cabinets, I noticed a hard to reach cabinet above the fridge.
With the aid of a step ladder, I opened up the cabinet and was surprised to see that the previous homeowner had left a cookbook inside it. It was a cookbook by Ina Garten, host of “Barefoot Contessa” on Food Network. The book was dusty, the pages were still crisp, but both and pages and the cover had the occasional stain on it from where it must have been cooked out of. I sat at my kitchen table and flipped through the book. It was clear the book must have been used with some regularity. I pondered why they would have left it behind.
As I made it midway through the book, I turned a page that had a sharp edge and got a rather nasty, one inch long paper cut on my right index finger. Quickly, I sat the book down and went to take care of my wound. Once it was settled, I felt I had spent enough time checking out my free cookbook, and went about unpacking more of my kitchen gear. It took about four hours, but I had 90% of my kitchen unpacked and set up to a useable state. I thought about doing more, but it had been a long day and I was exhausted, I went upstairs to my new bedroom and got settled for bed.
Friends handled setting up my bed for me, I was ever grateful to them. After the long day I was ready to plop right in the middle of my bed and zonk out for the night. It’s always hard to sleep in unfamiliar settings, especially a new home. New “house sounds” to get used to and the like. Despite being exhausted, it took me a good bit to fall asleep. It also didn’t help that it was a full moon that night, and the light–though pretty–shined right into my bedroom. I didn’t have curtains or blinds up yet–that would be solved the next day.
Morning came. I got out of bed feeling most different than I had the night before. I took a shower, put on a nice dark blue button up shirt, and went down into my kitchen. As I put on a pot of coffee made from beans roasted locally in the Hamptons, I thought being the first morning in my new home I should go all out. I’ve always thought that currants are one of the more overlooked fruits, and it seemed to me that currant scones with orange zest and cream anglaise would be an idea start for the day. A little decadent, but hey, you gotta be decadent now and then.
As the scones cooled on a baking rack, I went out to my garden to pick fresh flowers for a centerpiece. You know flowers really do make a home, such a simple, yet elegant touch. I phoned my girlfriend, Katie, and I told her that we should have a party tonight “Be a dear and invite Alec Baldwin and the cast of ‘Law and Order’” I told her. I also suggested Katie tell her pregnant sister that Geoffrey would be a wonderful name for a boy. It was such a beautiful morning that I took my coffee and scones out into my back yard. It’s just a few miles away from the beach and you can smell that wonderful salt air in the mornings.
I started planning my menu for my impromptu dinner party. I thought we’d start the menu with cocktails–naturally–then we’d have a Maple-Roasted Carrot Salad–I love how the maple mixes with the tang of goat cheese that dots the top of the salad. The main course will be a slow roasted beef tenderloin with a basil parmesan mayo. I like to make my own mayonnaise for that, but if you don’t have time to do that, store bought is fine. Dessert will be a devils food cake with buttercream frosting. How easy is that? There’s so much to do when you’re throwing a quick gathering that you want to make things as easy as possible–and everyone loves cake.
Cocktails will be at 7:00, with dinner to follow at 8:00. I think it will be such a great way to welcome my friends into my new home. I’ve even asked my interior decorator friend to come and make my house look really spectacular for the evening. Well, I have so much I need to get done before tonight. I ought to go look into my getting my hair styled too–thinking I should grow it out to be longer. It’d match my new wardrobe of 90 dark blue button up shirts. Ciao!