Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Happy Birthday Tucson!

234 years ago, the Spanish established a walled fortress, Presidio San Agustín del Tucson, on August 20, 1775. And now it is time for Tucson to party and celebrate its birth!

The Fourth Avenue underpass will open to connect Main Gate Square and Fourth Avenue shopping and dining areas with Downtown.

Look what’s going on – and this list is only part of the activities.

  1. The Mayor and City Council members will be joined by the Seven Pipers (a Scottish band), antique cars and more. 4-5 PM. FREE
  2. Arts, crafts and food at the Southern Arizona Transportation Museum in the Historic Depot. 3-8 PM. FREE . We'll be there with our scones!
  3. Ice cream social at Chris’ Café in La Placita Village. Ice cream courtesy of BlueBell ice cream. 4-8 PM. FREE
  4. Birthday Party, door prizes and FREE birthday cake at Frog & Firkin. 4-10 PM.
  5. Tucson birthday cake competition in Hotel Congress. 5 PM. Free cake to visitors.
  6. Harley Davidson Show at La Placita Village. 6-8 PM.
  7. Second annual “Best Legs in a Kilt Contest” at Flanagan’s Celtic Corner. Entry to the contest is FREE, but all entrants must be wearing a kilt.
  8. Hot Rod Show at Maloney’s. 5 PM.
  9. Determined Luddites play at Maynard’s Market. 6-8 PM.
  10. Desert Bluegrass Association at Chocolate Iguana. 7-9 PM.

Tucson then

Photo by Jan Christensen

Tucson now

Photo by Jan Christensen


Season Tucsonans love the monsoon season – not just for the rain that it brings to refresh our aquifers, but for the light show that comes with it. Check out the absolutely stunning pictures of lightning in Arizona at the following web site.

Looking for a different salad to serve to family and guests during the monsoon season or any other time. Below is the recipe for Gado-Gado, a tradition salad from the island of Java in Indonesia.

½ pound red potatoes
2 cups cauliflorets (1 inch) 1 medium carrot cut into 2 by ¼ inch strips
¼ pound green beans cut into 2 inch strips
2 cups shredded cabbage
1 firm Chinese bean curd cake
1 cup thick coconut milk (canned)
1/3 cup crunchy peanut butter
1 large garlic clove minced
3 tablespoons Indonesian sweet soy sauce (can purchase from some Asian stores or from Internet. I like a brand named Conemex)
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice or 1 square inch of lemon zest
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons crushed red pepper or 1 small fresh red chili, finely chopped (I use Sambal Olek available in Asian stores and at Albertson’s)
½ teaspoon salt
2 scallions thinly sliced
2 hard cooked eggs sliced
6 cherry tomatoes
1. In a medium saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the potatoes until tender, 12-20 minutes, depending on the size; drain. When cool enough to handle, peel and slice.
2. In another saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the cauliflower until just tender, about 3 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and rinse under cold water; drain well.
3. In the same boiling water, repeat this process with the carrot, then the green beans and finally the cabbage.
4. In a medium saucepan of simmering water, poach the bean curd for 10 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon, wrap in a kitchen towel and let drain for at least 15 minutes. Cut into ¼ inch cubes.
5. To make the sauce, in a medium saucepan, combine the coconut milk, peanut butter, garlic, sweet soy sauce, lemon juice, lemon zest, brown sugar, hot pepper, salt and 2 tablespoons of water. Bring to a boil over moderate heat, stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to moderately low and simmer until thickened, about 10 minutes. Keep warm over very low heat until ready to use.
6. Serve salad at room temperature – never chilled. Arrange vegetables in layers in a large salad bowl. Scatter the bean curd and scallions on top. Garnish with egg and tomatoes. Pour warm peanut butter sauce over all. Serve at room temperature.
7. A more traditional way of serving the salad is to spread the cabbage on a tray and arrange the other vegetables on top of the cabbage in rows. I always let guests serve their own dressing as the leftovers (should there be any) do not keep well covered with the dressing.)

Serves 6.

Fun, New Services at the Adobe Rose

Kissed By An Italian can provide Adobe Rose guests with three levels of service -Elegant and/or exotic customized dinners just for you as a guest. Diet restrictions can be easily accommodated.The planning, organizing, preparation & servicing of guests’ events at the inn for 40 or less - either buffet or platedA special stay & dine dinner package from May 1st to September 30.

Chef Mary Ann Brody-Heyl

Sample Menus for Elegant Four-Course Meals

Menu I - Chicken

  • Cold Avocado Soup Infused with Ginger and Lime
  • Simple Green Salad Tossed with an Orange Infused Vinaigrette and Served in an Laced Parmesan Cheese Bowl
  • Stuffed Chicken Breast with Prosciutto & Gruyere Cheese served with Mushroom Risotto & Sautéed Zucchini
  • Crème Brule

Menu II - Beef

  • Smoky Tomato Bisque
  • Stuffed Avocado Salad with Crab
  • Beef Wellington served with Individual Potatoes Au Gratin & Roasted Green Beans with Cashews
  • Chocolate Mousse

Menu III - Pork

  • Classic Onion Soup
  • Shrimp and Mango Salad
  • Smoky Rubbed Pork Tenderloin served with Autumn Grains consisting of Quinoa, Barley, Wild Rice and Butternut Squash
  • Banana's Foster

Menu IV - Seafood

  • Roasted Pumpkin Soup
  • Southwestern Caesar Salad
  • Salmon in Puff Pastry with Béarnaise served with Saffron Rice and Glazed Carrots
  • Italian Cannollis

Menu V - Vegetarian

  • Cold Gazpacho Soup OR Hot Minestrone Soup
  • Simple Romaine Salad Tossed with Orange Infused Vinaigrette Topped with Pine Nuts and Dried Cranberries Served in a "Laced" Parmesan Bowl
  • Rolled Eggplant Stuffed with Ricotta Cheese topped with Creamy Pesto Served with Angel hair pasta with fresh julienned Vegetables
  • Crème Brule


Chef Chic and the Adobe Rose Inn have paired up to turn their famous scone mix into scones that are available for you to buy in Tucson. Blueberry pecan, cinnamon raisin, cranberry orange, goat cheese and dill, lime coconut, chocolate chip, plus many many more! Contact the Adobe Rose Inn today to place an order or taste them at the Farmer's markets Saturday at Oro Valley & Sunday at St. Philips Plaza. Chef Chic is Wendy Gauthier who is a fabulous and inventive chef. She can take one of my experimental concoctions and turn out perfect scones using it the first time. No wonder she won the award for Best personal chef in the US AND Canada.

So where did I find these two incredible chefs? All of us belong to the Greater Tucson chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners – NAWBO. Check it out!

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