breakfast · brunch · Dating · eggs · mushrooms · Sauces · tinder · travel · vacation · vegetarian

Veggie Eggs Benedict and Hawaiian Magic

I don’t even know where to begin with this post, so I’m opening with a photo of Cortney and me in Hawaii last week. Y’all. This trip was magic. I can’t.

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A couple posts ago I mentioned that Cortney was setting me up with someone in Hawaii during my visit. This ended up being an ongoing joke between the two of us, with her talking about how I was going to fall in love, and me trying to bring her back to reality (while desperately hoping this guy wouldn’t take up too much of my time and/or be a murderer). I rolled my eyes every time she brought him up, but was also oddly intrigued by the idea of going out with someone on a tropical island (Was I living in a movie?!). I’m naturally an open person, so I just went into it with no expectations, but stayed open to any good that could come from it. I knew that, at the very least, it would be a learning experience and a fun story.

I had no idea what I was in for.

First, I nearly scared him away with my blog post that mentioned how Cortney wanted me to fall in love and move there. Let’s get one thing straight… I never once thought Cortney’s plan would ever work, and that’s exactly what I told him. I’m not stupid – this was a vacation fling. Obviously. And don’t you dare judge me. I’m a grown ass woman, and I’m allowed. I also recognized that it might not even develop into a fling. It was likely going to be one disappointing date, and nothing more.

Holy shit, you guys – I was so stupid.

Remember how I’m always talking about being vulnerable, having feelings, and avoiding a gray world of “meh”? The spectrum of human emotions is a beautiful thing, and I got to feel a lot of it throughout this experience. Yeah, sometimes it’s painful, but fuuuuuck… it’s worth it. If you’re not feeling anything, then what is the fucking point of being alive?

There is nothing sadder than indifference.

Our first date was my second night in town. It was the first of five, each one better than the last. Real feelings got involved, which I recognized around the 3rd date (and he mentioned it first, because he’s a secure dude, which is hot as fuck). I remember getting back to Cortney’s apartment and recapping it to her. She cackled manically like an evil mastermind and pretended to pet an invisible cat, exclaiming that her plan was working. I rolled my eyes. But the fact was, I was now invested and a little bit scared of the repercussions. I knew this couldn’t end like a romantic comedy. We live 4,000 miles apart. I knew that, and I dived in anyway. Why? Because it’s fucking worth it. Because he is interesting and smart. Because he’s secure as fuck and non-judgmental. Because he wasn’t afraid to hold my hand and communicate. Because he reminded me that I don’t have to compromise on what I want in a partner. They can have all of those qualities. People like that exist. He exists. It’s fucking possible.

Oh, and because he bought me fucking donuts.

I desperately hope this isn’t the end for us… but the fact is that it might be. I know that. Yet, still… I wouldn’t take any of it back. I’d do it all again in a second. Fuck it. The feelings involved (even the bad ones) made this so fucking worth it. 

I’ve completely reevaluated how I’m dating here in Minneapolis. And with this newfound knowledge… I’ve deleted Tinder. Not forever, just for now. I need to just sit with this feeling, and have a little space to myself. I’m not closed off (and I hope I never will be), but I’m taking a little time away from seeking out a relationship. I’m too raw right now, and it’s important to be self-aware enough to know that.

As much as I like to share my version of the human experience… this post is feeling very vulnerable to me (plus, I know he’s going to read it, and I’m feeling unsure about that). For now, the rest of this story will remain private. More Hawaii stories with Cortney yet to come, though! Including (but not limited to) snorkeling with a sea turtle, singing to the Moana soundtrack, teaching Acro to a few friends, giving a miniature horse a bath, horseback riding in the rain, and half naked men dancing. Oh, and eating alllll the mochi. Seriously. I spent probably $50+ on mochi. I’m out of control.

Oh, and I ate pork (gasp). I’m not sorry.

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My last breakfast in Hawaii was with Cortney, her husband, and a couple friends. Cortney and I couldn’t decide what we wanted, so we ordered eggs florentine and cinnamon apple pancakes to split. I fucking love doing shit like that. When I got home, I was really missing her, so I opted to make eggs benedict/florentine. This seemed logical at the time.

Veggie Eggs Benedict

1 egg

3-4 button mushrooms

1 handful of spinach

2 tablespoons chopped onion

1 slice of bread (or half an English muffin)

2 teaspoons white vinegar

For the hollandaise sauce:

2 egg yolks

1/2 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 stick butter, melted

salt and pepper

To make the sauce, whisk together the yolks and lemon juice in a metal mixing bowl until it fluffs up and doubles in size. Then place the bowl over a sauce pan of slightly simmering water (making sure the water doesn’t actually touch the bowl). Continue whisking, and do not let the eggs get too hot or sit for too long, otherwise they’ll scramble. Slowly whisk in the melted butter until the sauce has thickened and doubled in size again. Remove from heat, add salt and pepper to taste, and set in a warm spot while you get everything else together. Makes enough sauce to cover 2-4 eggs (I like a lot of sauce, so it’d only be 2 for me).

Saute the veggies, minus the spinach, in a little olive oil or cooking spray, stirring frequently and adding salt and pepper. Once the mushrooms brown, add the spinach and allow to wilt. Place bread/English muffin into the toaster.

To poach an egg! First step: Believe in yourself! If the egg isn’t beautiful, who the fuck cares? It’ll still be delicious. This was my first successfully poached egg, and I did a little dance to celebrate. You should, too. First, grab a deep skillet and fill it up with water. Place over high heat, and add a little salt and 2 teaspoons of white vinegar. While waiting for the water to boil, crack the egg into a small glass/ramekin. Once boiling, stir water with a spoon to create a whirlpool effect. Once it’s really circling, slowly pour the egg into the center. The movement of the water will help keep the egg together, preventing it from looking like a baby octopus. Turn off the heat and cover pan. Allow to cook for 2-5 minutes, depending on how runny you like your yolks.

To assemble (does this really need to be explained?): Cover toast/English muffin with the sauteed veggies. Top with the egg and as much sauce as you’d like. The sauce will not keep, so eat it all in one sitting!

Then go out and collect every single human experience possible. Feel everything.

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avocado · Cheese · comfort food · Dating · dinner · easy · lunch · mushrooms · quick · Sandwiches · tinder · vegetarian

Loaded Grilled Cheese After a Disappointing Weekend

I started my day yesterday with a dick pic from a stranger… if that tells you anything about how my week is going.

One of my Tinder dates read my blog. I was feeling careless one night and let him friend me on Facebook, where he obviously found the link. He texted me the day after our first date and said, “Is it weird that I want to know how it ends with the controller guy?” Yes, yes it is weird. I hesitantly replied, “This is why I don’t let my dates read my blog… I don’t actually know how it ends with the controller guy yet.”  But honestly, I was impressed with the fact that he brought it up at all. Seemed a bit ballsy, don’t you think? I appreciated the directness. So, in case you’re wondering, here is how it ends with the controller guy…

I went out with him again last weekend. This was technically our 4th date (Errr… 3.5 dates). We did a morning date with coffee, a trip to a thrift store (where I got a fucking sweet little end table – see photos), and a walk around the park before heading to his place to watch a movie. It was great, actually. And we hung out for around 6 hours (which is something that seems to keep happening to us), despite not really being on the same page about some things.

The night beforehand we were texting a bit, and he popped the question.

Fuck.

“So what are you looking for with this online dating thing?” he asked.

Double fuck.

I knew where this was fucking going. I’m not stupid. This isn’t my first rodeo, and it sure as hell wasn’t my first Tinder letdown. But I was tired of being “talked to” via text message. I got a surge of empowerment, put up some fucking boundaries, and told him what I needed in order to continue this conversation.

So I said, “Can we discuss this tomorrow? I’m not great with text.” (My therapist was so proud of me!)

He said sure, but still went on to say, “I just want to be upfront, so you don’t have the wrong expectations. I’m weekend fun at best.”

I’m weekend fun at best?

I can’t.

I chose not to engage in conversation with him for the rest of the night. I was not ready to have this conversation at all, and I was especially not excited about being rejected again. The next day we did talk, though reluctantly. I could physically feel his anxious energy when I brought it up again. Fuck, dude… this was your idea. I didn’t want to define anything yet. But here we are.

We do not agree about what we want from each other. Big surprise, right? To me, it’s not being “upfront” when you bring up your desire to have absolutely no commitment of any kind (probably ever) 3 weeks into dating. This is the age of Tinder – the age of making your wants and needs known on a profile for all to read, so that we can all make educated decisions when swiping. So, yeah, I already had some expectations. Don’t pretend you didn’t know that. But, hey, I wasn’t that clear about it, either, so I guess we’re both to blame.

So then the question is… why did I decide to hang out with him all day despite knowing we didn’t agree on this? Because I’m human and complex, just like everyone else. And because I fucking felt like it.

I have learned that I need to be clearer about my intentions with online dating. No, I’m not ready to jump right in to something serious… but I also need to know that the option is there, because that is definitely the end goal. When you say, “Casual dating and just see where it goes,” dudes think that “seeing where it goes” means sex and only sex. I didn’t know that. I’m learning.

Fuck.

So I definitely went into this with different expectations and was genuinely excited… and I was let down… again. But you know what? I’d still rather be disappointed and sad every single fucking time versus closing myself off completely to emotional connection. I refuse to enter into these things guarded. Because, as I’ve said before, if you’re not excited and open…. then what is the fucking point? What are we even here for? The human connection is so worth it. I’d take hurt feelings over a gray world of “meh” any day. Wouldn’t you?

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I then had the opposite experience on Sunday afternoon. I went on a 2nd date with another guy(the one that read my blog). He’s smart, kind, secure, motivated, balanced, self-aware, and all around amazing. He’s looking for a relationship and he likes me. Not only that, but he’s good with boundaries and communication. He literally offered me everything I wanted – go slow, and see where it goes (end goal: relationship). He was charming and sweet. We maintained good conversation, and he made me laugh. But I couldn’t look at him as anything other than a friend.

And I feel shitty about that.

I’m trying to not feel shitty about it, because I know you can’t force feelings that aren’t there. But fuuuuuck. Part of me is screaming – what the fuck is wrong with you?! And the other part of me is calmly reassuring myself that he’s just not my person. What’s meant to be will be. Breathe.

But seriously, if there are cool single ladies out there… let me know, and I’ll connect you two (with his permission, of course). He’s so fucking awesome. He was even cool when I told him I didn’t want to go out again.

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I realize this is turning into a dating blog. Get over it. I want this to be a space where nothing is off limits, and where I can write my stories as they really happen. I’m still cooking and eating, and loving it. Sometimes I write about food, but mostly I write about life. Right now my life is mostly about dating. And that’s okay. Shit is always changing.

I made this bomb grilled cheese sandwich after a frustrating afternoon of being double charged for new tires on my car, while also realizing one of the tires already had a fucking screw in it. Fuck the full moon. Seriously.

Next week I’ll be in California and Hawaii (where Cortney is apparently setting me up with a friend of a friend in the hopes that I will fall in love and move there), so don’t feel too bad for me. 🙂

Oh, and the dick pic was from that psychopath that thought he could be his own doctor. I think I have finally successfully blocked him. Only time will tell.

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Loaded Grilled Cheese Sandwich

1/2 avocado, sliced

2 pieces sourdough bread

smoked cheddar, sliced

4-5 button mushrooms, sliced

1/4 onion, sliced

butter

olive oil

Salt and pepper

Heat a skillet over medium high heat, melting the butter with a little olive oil. Add the onions and saute for a couple minutes, until they become translucent. Add the mushrooms and saute, stirring frequently, a few more minutes, until the onions and mushrooms are slightly (or a lot) browned. Add a little salt and pepper. Remove from heat and set aside. Butter one side of one of the pieces of bread, and place it butter side down in a greased skillet. Top with the sliced avocado, cheese, the onion/mushroom mixture, and the second piece of bread. Heat in the skillet over medium heat, and cover to keep the heat in (it helps melt the cheese). Once it’s about ready to be flipped, spread a little butter on the top piece of bread. Flip over and heat until slightly browned on both sides. Gobble it up immediately – while it’s still gooey. Remind yourself that you’re a badass, and someday the right person will notice.

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Also, can we talk about this fucking bomb-ass table I bought from the Salvation Army on my 4th date with no commitment guy? It was totally worth the soul crush.