The Dabble

-food with a side of life-

Bikers and Pot Sticker Salad with Snap Peas

Recent days have been full of sun, humidity and temps near 80. This is odd since it’s the beginning of April in Minnesota. I don’t have much of a background in Minnesota weather, from our almost 2 years here, but I heard meteorologists state that this is more like mid-May weather. Whatever it is, I’ll take it! (Although, I believe this weekend’s forecast is full of rain and lower temps.)

Greg and I have spotted several motorcyclists and we envy them. In Indiana, we rode on a Harley that his dad won in a raffle years ago. (That was the point when his parents became motorcycle enthusiasts and bought a bigger and better one for themselves, basically allowing Greg to have/use the other…and we did.)

The months before we moved, he was riding the bike more than driving a car to work. The gas mileage was wonderful and I enjoyed being on the back, going along for the breezy rides. We miss that bike. Those were some good times and now, all we can do is look at other bikers and sigh, sometimes describing the day’s weather on the ability to have a comfortable ride or not.

Greg might be mad that I posted this. It's the day that he and our friend Jason got their motorcycle endorsements. Greg wore his work boots, borrowed that awesome bad helmet and wore his glasses so put on the goggles. These two get along, despite the Harley versus crotch rocket issue.

I tried to find the pictures of Greg and I on the bike but they are spread around since the computer crashed…they are here somewhere.

Harley riders have a wave of sorts to one another, one that I make fun of but that has inspired me to make a Subaru signal but it hasn’t caught on…yet. (You make an S shape with your hands-that’s it.)

Harley bikers, in my experience, seem to ignore other brands and dislike people on crotch rockets (the sportbikes that look completely uncomfortable, making the riders hunch over…you can see a number of young persons on these…some with their lady’s bum high in the air on the back…gross).

Next time you see a Harley rider pass another Harley rider take notice if they give a low wave or nod of the head. Also, watch the Harley rider snub the crotch rocket rider on the road. It’s an interesting social rejection/ marvel that I previously, without experience, wouldn’t have thought. My idea was that bikers have a sort of camaraderie.

My grandpa's bike (he's on the left), that he rode around on in his younger days. Your eyes aren't fooling you, he is same short height as me. I told you he likes marigolds. That's Jason on the right.

One of our favorite couples, in retirement, rode their bike around most of the western United States last year and stopped by to see us. I think they are doing another trip this year. Have a great time, Paul and Judy! I hope your riding bell stays intact-that’s a guardian trinket for luck on the trip and sometimes, I read, to remember those that have passed due to a biking incident.

Before we moved, my in-laws went on a bike ride with us through several counties near our home in Indiana. I remember it like it was yesterday. We ended up at a restaurant (we were rocking the wind-blown/helmet hair look) to have lunch with my family for Father’s Day. After that, since our day was so pleasant, we decided to watch a movie at the theater (something we rarely do).

That movie might not have been a great notion. Once we stepped out of the door, the weather had changed to what looked like an injurious, very windy storm brewing, with the potential to wreak mucho havoc. We were about 45 minutes from home, with mostly open country roads (read nowhere to hide) but we set off in a race versus Mother Nature. I thought we were going to die. I glanced behind us (very carefully) to see the storm and witnessed some of the darkest clouds I’ve ever seen with flashes of lightning and thunder loud enough to be heard over the engine. We made it home somehow. No kidding, the moment we stepped inside, the rain began to pour…for maybe 2 minutes and then the sun came back and the storm passed us by, of course. That was exhilarating. We went back out on the bike for the evening. I miss that beautiful, blue Harley.

On this potentially lovely Friday (potentially because it has only just begun for me), I would like to give you an ideal weekend recipe from Real Simple. Ideal in that it is fast, you can pack it to go along with you (since it is spring and I imagine you might be outside of your home) and it might seem like it took you longer to make, therefore, upping the impressive factor. You can make your own pot stickers but that would take away from the ease of the recipe…even though I like that idea but didn’t have time this go round. I changed the cooking method, after testing their directions and having some difficulty cooking the veggies completely but it’s still quick and tasty.

Pot Sticker Salad with Snap Peas

Pot Sticker Salad with Snap Peas from Real Simple magazine
Serves 4

1 lb. bag frozen pot stickers (pork, chicken, veg, etc.)
4 cups sugar snap peas, trimmed
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
½ cup soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 ½ cups bean sprouts
¼ cup roasted peanuts, chopped-optional
2 scallions, sliced
a few dashes of red pepper flakes ( I added this)
cilantro, chopped-optional (I added this too)

Cook the pot stickers according to the package instructions, most likely boiling or steaming. Set aside. In a skillet with ½-inch of water, over medium heat, cover and steam the snap peas and carrots until tender, about 6 to 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the soy sauce and sesame oil. Add the pot stickers to the skillet with the veggies to reheat for a few minutes on low. Toss in the sauce to the skillet and coat. Place in the serving dish and top with the peanuts, scallions and bean sprouts, maybe a dash or two of red pepper flakes.