Lucky Lentil Soup for New Year’s Eve

Lentils

New Years Eve is by itself a day filled with excitement and anticipation. Here in the ski town of Park City, it happens at one of the busiest weeks of the year. The whole world visits PC for their holiday vacations, the town is a flurry, and if we’re lucky, the weather hits us with tons of new, gorgeous powder. Tonight, there is a party at every bar and restaurant on Main Street. The resorts are all having events, and you will not be wanting for exciting entertainment. A few ideas from VisitParkCity.com.

For me? I’m all about that hot date with my sofa. No parties for me. But, I review my year and set my intentions for the coming year. And I give in to one particular superstition: Lucky lentil soup. Lentils are healthy, humble, and delicious. And for New Year’s, they cater to the tradition that eating coin-shaped food will bring good fortune for the coming year. I like the reminder that we can make something fabulous out of even the most humble of situations. So tonight, I will be tucking into a beautiful bowl of lentil soup, thinking about my year, and getting ready for 2015 to be my best year yet.

Lentils
Lucky lentils for the new year

Lucky Lentil Soup

2 slices of bacon, diced

1 onion, diced

1 cup vegetables diced, such as carrots, potatoes, celery, etc.

1 clove garlic, pressed

1 bay leaf

1 cup dried lentils, rinsed

3-5 cups of chicken stock

salt and pepper

1. In a heavy pan or dutch oven, cook the bacon until it is crispy, remove and reserve.

2. Cook the onion in the bacon fat until the edges begin to turn golden. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.

3. Add 3 cups of the stock, the bay leaf, the lentils, and some pepper. Cover and boil for 20 minutes. Add the vegetables, and add the broth as needed and simmer until lentils are tender and pleasant to eat. (If you like your soup more like a stew like I do, boil for another 15 minutes or so before adding the vegetables so they don’t get too soggy.)

4. Check seasoning for salt and pepper.

Serve with a bubbly beverage, a crusty bread, and of course, sharp dill pickles.

Happy New Year!

Halloween 2014, Park City : The Candy Apocalypse

Parkites love a party, we said. Twelve hundred pieces of candy is plenty, we said. It won’t be much larger than last year, we said.

We were wrong.

At 1 PM, the streets were still.

Halloween in Park City 2014

No sign of the coming bedlam. No whisper of a crowd. Nary a candy wrapper in the breeze. The only things that foretold the coming mania were road signs warning citizens not to park on the street. The city knew. The city knew all along.

We had prepared with light-hearted reverie. Amusing real estate signs and heads on stakes.

Halloween in Park City 2014

Soon, a boy arrived. Dressed as Harry Potter, innocent enough.

Patient Zero.

Halloween in Park City 2014

Children were the first to turn.

Halloween in Park City 2014

The adults presented more slowly, in isolated pockets of hysteria.

Halloween in Park City 2014

The affected banded together, bound to each other by some common theme. A similar strain.

Halloween in Park City 2014

Even the animals started showing signs of the madness.

Halloween in Park City 2014

Halloween in Park City 2014

Scuffles were inevitable.
Halloween in Park City 2014

The people coped as best they could.

Halloween in Park City 2014

Even inanimate objects showed signs of contamination. We were never able to confirm with the Montage at Deer Valley if they indeed were afflicted as their model appeared to show.

Halloween in Park City 2014

Communications were cut off; overtaxed bandwidth struggled, then faltered, then failed. Discarded phones lost in plastic caldrons of chocolate bars and hard candy. And then, they came.

HalloweenParkCity2014-(20)

In droves they came. Wave after wave descended upon Main Street. Masquerading as a “dog parade,” the infected, the spirited, swarmed from one shop to the next.

 

HalloweeninParkCity2014
(Photo taken by our superstar Summit Sotheby’s International Realty photography team)

I, and others, tied balloons to children, hoping the helium-filled beacons might give our young a chance at being found, and fed.

HalloweeninParkCity
(Photo taken by our superstar Summit Sotheby’s International Realty photography team)

 

When supplies had run low at the doorstep of the uprising, the storm began to break. Gently, quietly, an antidote crept in. Some brave soul dared distribute the only product that could possibly tame the epidemic.

Halloween in Park City 2014

Slowly, a calm settled. As the masses began to disburse, even the most active of rioters ran out of steam.

Halloween in Park City 2014

After the Great Outbreak, what came to be called Halloween on Main Street 2014, we gathered. In bars, in restaurants, on front porches and in parlors. Friends and strangers, bonded by our experience. We spoke in revered tones. We sipped cider and pondered the meaning of “fun size.” We watched Jack Nicholson chop through a door on television and boasted about how we might have skied out the window and down the side of that hotel.

And we prepared ourselves for next year.

Park City Pizza Co: Park City Restaurant Review

Park City Pizza Co

Sundays are meant for takeout. I don’t know how else to say it. I’ve usually held an open house or taken a client on a property tour in the morning, and in the afternoon I like to stock up on groceries and finish errands and by Sunday night all I want is a cocktail and for food to magically come to me. This is how I ended up at Park City Pizza Co. I’d finished two trips to Home Depot, one trip to Smith’s at the Junction (and two stops along the way to take pictures of the gorgeous fall leaves), and it was already 7:30.

Firstly, they have an excellent online ordering system. Not as charming as going in and smelling all the smells while you wait but great when you’re standing in the grocery store with a cart full of dubious choices, starving, dying for a beer. You can order, they can cook, you can get checked out, loaded up, then pick up your dinner and bail.

Secondly, it’s in a particularly cute strip mall. (Stick with me on this.) The building is relatively newer, but something in the horizontal lines, the brown, and the font of the sign feels like the late 70s/early 80s. “Vintage Ski Town” design, which is a soft spot for most of us. Inside was very family-friendly, including a stack of board games in the corner. They also had an impressive beer selection (including beers from Moab Brewery), so fun for everybody!

Park City Pizza counter

The garlic cheese bread is the stuff of memories, just exactly what you’d remember garlic cheese bread from any late 80s pizza shop. Nice chewy bread, buttery garlic underneath a stringy layer of chewy mozzarella. Even the foil sleeve for takeout felt comfortable. Nostalgic even.

ParkCityPizza_3

The house salad was nice. I’m a fan of more fun stuff than lettuce but they had other salad options and I chose what I chose. Be warned though: if you don’t care for diced sweet red raw onion ask them to hold it. Also the salad is ample but if you opt for a creamy dressing like I did (normally I’m a vinegar gal but ranch or bleu cheese always tickles my fancy with pizza) it will be on the sparse side.

ParkCityPizza_4

Wanting to stick with something less adventurous than their delicious-sounding specialty pizzas I opted for Canadian bacon and black olives. I know most pizza porn shows you a browned cheese topping, pools of pepperoni grease and giant bubbles. And I know that this looks a little, well, anemic. But don’t be deceived by appearances! The crust was thick and chewy, crispy and brown on the bottom. There was a lot of sauce, and that’s a personal decision, but I love it when they smear it all over the crust and let it brown. My only complaint about the pizza is that it wasn’t as salty as I like, but let’s face it, my diet tends on the “fast track to gout” side of things, so it was probably just perfect.

ParkCityPizza_5

Quite inexpensive: all of the above came to $27. All in all? A very pleasant, comfortable, tasty experience.