Fences

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Last night, I caught a production of August Wilson’s “Fences” at the Calshakes Theatre in Orinda, California.  It is a play about the life of an African American family in the late 1950’s – Troy, the father, trying to make ends meet and provide for his family as a garbage collector after failed dreams as a pro-baseball player;  Rose, the mother, trying to keep the peace and protect her family; Lyon, the eldest son of Troy and stepson to Rose, trying to survive as a musician and comes often for monetary support from his father; Cory, the younger son, trying to win praise from his father and reach goals that seem impossibly out of reach; Uncle Gabe, the schizophrenic brother of Troy and retired vet, who spent time in out of hospitals and his delusions; and Bono, Troy’s best friend, who is considered part of the family.

This was fantastic production and the talent was outstanding.  Aldo Billingslea plays Troy, an ass of a man, but was portrayed so well, I had chills down my spine.  Rose was played by Margo Hall and she nailed that too (someone needs to give her an award!!).  The subject matter was quite deep and dark – more than I would bargain for on a Saturday night – but I enjoyed every minute.  Bravo!

If you have read my other posts from my experiences at Calshakes, you know we always get there early for a picnic dinner before the show.  Last night, I made some spiced rubbed fish sandwiches from a recipe I found in the Life and Home section of Instyle® Magazine’s August 2016 issue.

image  I took whole tilapia fillets and used a BBQ spice rub I had in the cupboard (after all, it contained the same spices as listed in the spice rub for the recipe).  I then baked them instead of grilling because that was much easier for me.  The slaw on top is an interesting mix of red cabbage fennel, red onion, mint, pumpkin seeds and green apple – loved the flavor and textures.  The best part was the yogurt tartar sauce, made with a cup of greek style yogurt, dijon mustard, gherkins, capers, and herbs.  Altogether with a fresh roll from the bakery, this was super duper yummy!

For dessert, I made the pear ginger and thyme tarte tartin that was found in the same issue of Instyle®.  I was trying to save time by not carmelizing the sugar but it made for a blander tart:

image  And hard to share at a picnic!  So used the same recipe and made some turnovers, since the crust was just puff pastry:

image  And added some caramel on top!

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