In Jars appetizer from Empire State South

Where I’ve Been

The Messy Epicure is not dead!

Okay, I haven’t blogged in nearly four months. But I have excuses! Here’s what I’ve been doing since December.

I was planning FoodBlogSouth.

FoodBlogSouth welcome sign

Last year marked the first FoodBlogSouth, a food-blogging conference I co-founded and help organize. This year’s edition in January was bigger, better and a huge success, but pulling it off was practically a full-time job (on top of my real full-time job) for a few weeks.

I was making cassoulet.

Cassoulet

For Valentine’s Day, Nadria made me cassoulet from scratch, using this recipe. (Okay, this isn’t actually a reason I wasn’t blogging, since she was doing all the work, but I have this picture and intended to blog about it, and now I did.)

I was in Atlanta.

In Jars appetizer from Empire State South

I spent my birthday weekend gluttoning it up in the ATL with Nadria. We ate some incredible food—late-night seafood at Octopus Bar, fancified Southern classics at Empire State South (including the awesome stuff-in-jars platter above, featuring a boiled peanut hummus whose recipe I will attempt to re-create on this blog soon), the best $2 banh mi ever at Quoc Huong, and amazing breakfast at West Egg Cafe—and drinks—the incomparable Holeman & Finch, the Twin Peaks (yes, Twin Peaks)-themed Book House Pub, and the aforementioned Octopus Bar.

I was throwing a tiki party.

Shrimp toast

I’ve decided 2012 is going to be the year of tiki. That means fruity rum cocktails and ’50s-style “Chinese” food: shrimp toast, sticky red barbecue ribs, cream-cheese (because it doesn’t actually contain crab) rangoon, and other greasy fried things doused in sweet & sour sauce. After the Atlanta trip, we made a bunch of these dishes, put on some Martin Denny, and had some friends over.

I know, none of these are in any way good reasons for a third-of-a-year absence from blogging. Mea culpa. But I’m back!

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