Friday, August 10, 2012

My Boy at the Sebastian in Vail and Mexican Shrimp Cocktail

                 It's  Friday!
I love Fridays. Maybe it is because the weekend is ahead and I love weekends. Not that it matters when everyone is gone- but I still love weekends. Friday always lets me reflect on the week that has past and I had a good great, fabulous week. My sister in law came to visit from Chicago. We went to Vail and spent an awesome weekend at my son’s hotel. Well, it’s not really his hotel but we can pretend, can’t we?

We started last Saturday with a great breakfast at The Original Pancake House and then walked through the Paris Flea Market. Alas, it was not in Paris. We than came home and had a lovely lunch of the basil/cheese bread we bought at the market and this revitalizing Mexican ceviche.

Easy and low-cal!

 I love this stuff. Filled with avocados and baby shrimp and of course some  summer sweet corn; it takes me back to the beaches of Mexico which unfortunately I haven’t been to in a long time. That helped prepare us for a Saturday afternoon nap which we awoke from in time to have St. Germain cocktails with icy gin and sour lemons. Ahhh. That relaxed us enough to drive over to Federal Blvd and get cheap massages at Bamboo Forest. Massages on Federal must always be followed up with Vietnamese at New Saigon…which is where we ended our day perfectly sated with Goi Ga (Vietnamese chicken salad) and Pepper Garlic Shrimp and crispy, golden egg rolls.

Sunday found us rising early and driving to Vail for a stay at The Sebastian. We were greeted warmly and I don’t think it was just because I was bringing up his stuff! It was so good to see his new room

Diane and Alex
and meet all his hotel compadres. I’d be hard pressed to meet a nicer group of people and I’m not saying that just because he works there. There, even housekeeping, goes out of its way to engage and talk with you which helps make your stay so much more memorable. A magnificent, understated art collection, a cushy library with great books,

an intimate bar with a superb cocktail selection, and a restaurant that serves warm donuts (they call them beignets, but they are really just cute little donuts!) with caramel and crème anglaise to dip them into  help make this small, comfortable, boutique hotel luxurious. I also got a great tan while drinking a bottle of prosecco that my incredible son sent down to the pool

for his aunt and mother to sip gulp.

And so it continued… Now Diane is gone and I am home again with my two dogs who are always happy to see me. AND I have leftover Mexican ceviche to satisfy me while I dream of good times, charming people and beautiful hotels. It could be worse! And, if you ever visit The Sebastian, check in with Alex at the front desk and tell him his mom sent you! He won't give you Mexican Shrimp Cocktail but he does have good cookies!

Mexican Shrimp Cocktail (This is not a true ceviche because the shrimp does not cook in the lime juice. Feel free to substitute poached fish)

3/4lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined (I used cooked baby shrimp because I like them!)

1 ½ c chilled Clamato juice OR 1 c chilled tomato juice plus 1/2c chilled bottled clam juice
1/4c ketchup
1/4c fresh lime juice
1 t hot sauce such as Tabasco
1 t salt or to taste
½ c finely chopped white onion
1/4c chopped cilantro

1 firm, but ripe avocado, peeled and cut into small chunks
1 ear cooked corn sliced off the cob

If your shrimp aren’t cooked cook them in 6c boiling salted water about two minutes. Do not overcook! Drain and transfer to a bowl of ice water and cool for 3 minutes. Pat dry.

Stir together everything except shrimp, avocado and corn. When ready to serve stir in and spoon into parfait or martini glasses.

(Adapted from the green Gourmet Today cookbook!) I also have used V8 juice and some extra ketchup or tomato paste makes this a bit more tomatoey-which I like! And of course, hot sauce to taste.)

Alex and Me!

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  1. You look very happy and very tan! I wish I could have been there... but it's great that you could take a nice break with Diane. Hopefully, we can find something comparable here as you shouldn't be moving down! :)

  2. Sounds like a terrific weekend! Long, long ago I was in the hotel biz. A lot of fun, although really long hours (I was the manager and lived onsite, so I was basically on call 24/7). Good recipe for the Mexican Shrimp Cocktail - a lotta flavor in that.

  3. Yes, Mr. Riffs, I am guessing that it is good to be in the hotel biz while you are young. So far I think they have been kind on his hours and he seems to be enjoying it. Yes, this is a good, kind of thirst quenching recipe that would have tasted great by the pool. In Mexico I remember giant glass containers on the bar of a variety of ceviches. It definitely satisfies! Thanks for keeping up with me.