It’s a holiday weekend today, Queen Victoria’s birthday to be exact! What is interesting is that Canada celebrates this day, but the UK does not!
And it’s our wedding anniversary weekend (actually was yesterday)!
I met JT when I was 15 and knew instantly that we would be together! The day we met I went home and wrote my new name; I still have the book (it was the Book of Nothing) I wrote my new name “Eva Taylor” in script. We met through Facebook -10.2 — the Citizens Band Radio (breaker, breaker; remember Smokie and the Bandit?) it was my brother’s radio but he quickly discovered he could talk to cooler people if he had a girl on board. My Dad forbade us to use our real names so I was Leslie and my “handle” was “The Roxy Roller” and he was John “The Baracuda” both from some cool songs of the day. JT was “Blue Magic”. Blue Magic was a wee bit older than I and I knew my parents wouldn’t approve; we were together a year before they found out. I went to the library a lot; my parents thought I was very studious. At night, JT used to come over to our apartment after my parents went to bed and we’d toss love letters to each other from my second floor bedroom window (not sexts but actual love letters, the Romeo and Juliette kind). When my parents met him, they also fell in love. My biggest regret is lying to them for a year but they forgave me. After my Dad’s first heart attack, he gave JT permission for my hand, if he should ever want it. He passed away three months later.
We dated 8 years before we married (not exactly smooth sailing, but in my heart I always knew it would work out and we’d be together).
My Mom and I hand sewed a million pearls onto my veil; the night before the wedding I tried on the dress and decided to cut (yes, CUT with manicure scissors) the neckline because it was too high! I still have the dress, anyone want it?
It rained the entire day of our wedding, except for the very few times I stepped outside (thanks Dad); and by rain, I’m talking teaming, pouring, drenching rain, not the spitting kind! Even the limo driver asked if I wanted to be carried to the car! My brother walked me down the aisle. I wish I had asked my Mom too, but it wasn’t done back then, and I hadn’t thought of it. In the limo, on the drive to the church my brother offered me his savings if I wanted to escape, exact words “I’ve got enough money for you to go to the airport and buy a plane ticket outa here”. I thought it was sweet. And then I found out he offered the same thing to JT in the church! We had both declined.
Speaking of all dressed up, back in April, my friend Lorraine of Not Quite Nigella posted a gorgeous Salmon en Papillote recipe which inspired me to come up with one for Tilapia, a staple in our house, it really isn’t a recipe, just a guideline — completely customizable to your taste and what you have on hand.
Tilapia with white wine en Papillote (French for ‘in parchment’)
- 120 g fennel cubed*
- 200 g zucchini cubed*
- 170 g red pepper cubed*
- 100 g yellow pepper cubed*
- 50 g celery cubed*
- 50 g carrots cubed*
- 3 tbsp pesto (home made or otherwise)
- 3 tbsp white wine
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 x 100 g Tilapia filets
- Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C).
- Begin by cutting three ‘heart’ shapes from parchment paper. I found it easier to cut a square of parchment, fold in half and cut a half heart shape.
- Mix the cubed* vegetables all together and divide into three portions on the parchment, placing the vegetables in towards the centre of the heart.
- Top with the tilapia filet, add 1 tbsp pesto and spread on top of the filet, drizzle with one tablespoon white wine and season.
- Fold over the other half of the heart and begin folding the edges in at the top of the heart so that the parchment seals completely (I googled how to do this and used this method). Continue with each heart. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet (just in case they leak, but mine did not) and bake for 20 minutes.
- Remove and plate carefully, open the parchment very carefully because inside is very hot steam. Serve immediately.
*it’s imperative that your vegetables be cut the same size so that they all cook at the same rate. This 7-10mm (1/4″) cube was perfect for 20 minutes in the oven, they weren’t over cooked and had a bit of a crunch left in them.