But last Sunday, after her 50-mile bike ride, Lorraine came to my house and I took her to the most amazing resale shop I've ever seen— The Pink Poodle. Ooh laa laa. It's mostly out of our price range (except for the stuff on sale) but everything is fantastic, including the ultra-funky decor. It's a visual feast that's hard to describe, filled with leopard print rugs (fake of course) and outrageous furniture. There are a dizzying number of rooms to explore, each stuffed with glorious fashions, jewelry, furniture and housewares. The unusual is the usual. The loot is really not priced so high considering its quality, but we're not used to paying $20 for a skirt when we usually pay about $4 in our usual haunts. (But I have bought stuff there.) Lorraine tried on the perfect skirt. It fit exquisitely and looked fabulous, but when she checked the tag, it was $49 and she most reluctantly left it behind. I tried on about 20 things but everything was either too big or too small, and I ended up with only a long, skinny black crocheted scarf that I love. And a wonderful deepest purple tablecloth with 12 matching napkins. Matching napkins—what a concept.
After our immersion in funky luxury, we continued on to a nearby (a block away but another universe) St. Vinnies where we felt distinctly let down. We recovered our balance quickly and found the requisite jars and frames, a rag rug and a couple of fetching tops. I tried on the most spectacular black lace dress that seemed to have been made for me, but couldn't think where to wear it, and left it behind. $10. Darn. Sometimes I am just too practical for my own good.
Anyway, after our exhausting afternoon of shopping and gabbing, we went to an open-house party at the new home of a mutual friend. It was a lovely house and yard and the table was spread with a wonderful assortment of FOOD WE COULD EAT. Sorry about the caps but I was so impressed. It was just the sort of food I love best—beautifully and simply prepared REAL food. There were assorted vegetables (new potatoes, roasted cauliflower, golden beets, steamed whole baby carrots with greens still attached, olive tapenade, etc.) These were accompanied by delicate sauces, delicious dips and spreads. I won't describe all the offerings—wish I'd had a camera—but will finally get to the subject of this post. I was offered an herbal tea that was so delicious and refreshing I couldn't stop drinking it. I asked for the recipe but was only given a general idea of what was in it, so I've tried to recreate it here. It had Red Zinger tea, cinnamon, ginger and white grape juice.
ginger at Penzey's, (which is near my house), and this seemed like the perfect opportunity to try it. It's dried slices. There's also a version called cracked ginger. I love the way the slices look and smell, but if I didn't have them, I would probably use grated or sliced fresh ginger and strain the tea. If I were feeling really ambitious, I might squeeze out the grated ginger and make ginger juice. But I was making a rather large quantity of tea, and I'm not all that ambitious.
- three quarts of cool water
- 12 bags of Red Zinger tea
- six slices of dried ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 quart white grape juice, chilled
- Place the tea bags into a gallon jar and add the water, ginger and cinnamon. Stir to dissolve the cinnamon.
- Steep in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight. Remove the bags, squeezing them into the jar.
- Remove the ginger with a long handled spoon.
- Add the grape juice and stir.
- Serve with ice. This looks very pretty served from a clear glass pitcher. I should have put it into one and taken some better pictures but I didn't have time!