One thing about Meetups is that you always seem to meet new people at each event. I guess that's the point, but in the beginning, I found it frustrating. How was I supposed to make friends if I was constantly thrust into a completely unfamiliar group? I feel that I personally shine when I already know the people at least a little bit (Thought question for the comments: When do you feel that you personally shine?). It's settled down since then, and I'm starting to see some of the same people. Or maybe I'm just going to particular kinds of meetups, and the same people go to those.
Because there are so many women, a lot of them have the same first name. It gets confusing. I haven't met any other Sandras, but I have met about eight Kate/Katies, three Ashleys, and four Heathers. As a result, people end up getting nicknames that associate their name with something about them. That helps the rest of us differentiate Kayaking Katie from Organ Harvesting Katie*, neither of which is to be confused with IBM Kate. Then there is Flashdance Jessica, who is the only Jessica that I've met, but I just really like that she works at a welding factory.
I bring all this up just to share a pair of recipes with you. I've been to several potluck-type meetups, which means that some of the girls have food nicknames, based on what they brought. It also means that after the meetup, I send an email to one of my new friends and ask her to tell me how to make that fantabulous dish that she brought. No one has yet emailed me to ask for a recipe, but I'm just going to assume that it's because they're too intimidated by my good looks.
Both of these are salsa recipes, actually. That could be a coincidence, or it could be an indication that I like an excuse to stuff my face with tortilla chips. Salsa recipes aren't so much recipes as lists of ingredients. They don't need a directions section, because the directions always say "Mix it up."
Courtesy of Kristy, who told a great story about panties, but would probably prefer not to have a nickname related to that.
1 pint strawberries, chopped
2 pints cherry tomatoes, cut in half
4 - 6 green onions, finely sliced
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
6 T olive oil
2 T white balsamic vinegar
1/2 t salt
White balsamic vinegar is sort of mysterious. I found some and only bought it because it was on sale. I think it's just an aesthetic thing, so if it's not on sale, feel free to use the regular stuff. Your salsa will be ugly and delicious.
Bean and Corn Stuff
Courtesy of Fruit Tart Anna, who brought a great fruit tart to a meetup once, and has lived to regret it. Fruit Tart Anna did not actually respond to my email request for her recipe, so I found an approximation online. I've decided that she just didn't get my email, or she was too intimidated by my good looks to reply.
1 can corn
1 can black beans
1 package block feta cheese
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
4 tsp. white sugar
I used very little feta, because I only bought 5 ounces and I had to stretch it between two recipes. So I probably only used 2 ounces, yet it was still awesomely delicious. Fruit Tart Anna used a lot more feta, and it was oh, so good. So my point is to, uh, use feta, I guess.
*Organ Harvesting Katie works in organ donation services, and would like me to note that they prefer the term "organ recovery" as opposed to "harvesting."