Monday was MLK Day and 80 degrees in Newport Beach. Both of those things said to me that I really needed to take a day off and stick my toes in the sand. Since having moved here in mid-November, I have yet to actually have a REAL beach day.
Ya know, where you pack a colorfully striped seagrass bag with a blanket, a great book, a picnic, sunscreen, a big floppy hat and a split of Prosecco, of course.
Eating at the beach is truly an art form.
First, you have to be sure whatever you take is going to remain fresh tasting after being in the sun for a few hours.
Second, nobody likes a picnic full of sandy food so sealed containers are super important.
Third, when its hot and the sun is beating down on me I only want to eat something that is refreshing and hydrating. Meatball Subs at the beach are NOT sexy.
So I made a quick and easy salad with fresh mangoes, chopped jalapeno, fresh Italian parsley (cilantro would work too), chopped red pepper – all tossed in a fresh lime ponzu vinaigrette. The jalapeno balances the sweetness of the mango. The red pepper adds color and crunch. The parsley tames the jalapeno and is a nice herbaceous note. The lime keeps the flavors fresh and the ponzu is well, just a really good idea.
So the only last thing to decide before stepping out the door was what book to bring. My dear friend, Alison, gave me Provence 1970 for Christmas and I had just started it over the weekend. I was immediately taken with the premise of the book and was eager to get more stuck in.
Decision made. I was going to have a beach day with Julia Child, James Beard and MFK Fisher! I am only about 30 pages in now but totally taken with it. Find myself going to bed earlier and earlier so I can read more. Has anyone finished it yet? Its written by the nephew of MFK Fisher based off of all her journals he found. Its going to be a must read for foodies I can already tell. I love historical novels and one that is based on some of the greatest chefs in history is so right up my alley.
As the sun began to set and a chill started to creep across the beach, I packed up my picnic and took a long stroll along the shoreline. There has been one consistent here in Corona del Mar, every single day, and that is a breathtaking sunset. If you follow me on Instagram (HauteHeather13), you too, can enjoy them. Armchair style.
Get the book. Make the yummy salad if you live in a warm climate. Copy paste it for a few more months in you live in my long last Brooklyn. Won’t keep you warm this winter even with the jalapeno.