end-of-summer langoustine rolls & a birthday recap

My birthday came and went and now I’m left in that post-birthday haze that always plagues me the second week of September. You are no longer special. Back to reality. Go clean the litter box. It’s just so much fun having attention, gifts, food, and surprises lavished on you, and being able to avoid doing life’s mundane tasks by simply stating: “I’m the birthday girl.” (Except now that I am 25, it makes me a “birthday woman,” which is not cute…)

It was  definitely one of the best birthdays I’ve ever had, making the withdrawals that much worse. The boyfriend turned my birthday into a birthday week, surprising me with baked goods, chocolates, a piñata and lots of little gifts every day leading up to my actual birthday. We had our first celebration the week before at my Dad’s, where Dhiren surprised us with a piñata. I can’t remember the last time I’ve hit a piñata, or laughed that hard….There’s something so unsettling about being blindfolded, spun around, feeling disoriented and vulnerable, while your Dad knocks you in the head with a paper-mâché owl. Observe:

On my birthday itself, I woke up to presents & a massive owl balloon.

He  then took me to 26 Beach Restaurant in Venice for brunch, where I gorged myself on lemon ricotta French toast, one of the best croissant sandwiches I’ve ever had in my life and of course, some of Dhiren’s food as well! After we stuffed ourselves, we headed over to the gorgeous Getty Villa in Malibu, saw some cool museum things & worked up an appetite for dinner across town at Osteria Mozza.

This was a big surprise, since Dhiren had me put Angelini Osteria (our normal celebration spot) into the GPS. Waiting for us at the restaurant was my friend Vanessa, who had been texting me as we went to dinner, making me feel incredibly guilty that we didn’t invite her. I had absolutely no idea she was there. Then, to compound the shock, Leah, my best friend since high school, showed up mid-meal after telling me a couple days before that she was stuck in Dubai. We had a fabulous meal which included an array of foods I can’t even remember. We then headed to the Groundlings where my third surprise awaited in the form of my friend Iris, who joined us for the show.

Needless to say, I was kind of in a daze the entire evening.

The day after my birthday we went to celebrate with my grandparents and mom, who made me a Thanksgiving dinner, the most delicious from-scratch chocolate cake with Swiss Buttercream and gave me a KitchenAid with Dhiren! I also received some awesome cutting mats, an emulsifier and a set of French bakeware.

It was a fabulous birthday and totally worth not being able to fit in my pants!

Back to the present. I’ve been craving lobster rolls for a LONG time ever since I stumbled across a recipe online, and decided to utilize my KitchenAid for the first time to mix it all together! I was initially worried that I wouldn’t get much use out of the KitchenAid, but I can easily see how it is going to make my life a lot simpler and neater, especially since I am not talented at swirling around those hand-held mixers.

Now I didn’t actually use lobster in these because langoustine was simply more convenient and I avoided making two grocery store trips.

Ingredients (makes 3-4 small sandwiches like the one pictures)

  • 1 package of frozen langoustine tails (Trader Joe’s sells a 12 oz package)
  • 1/8 cup of mayonnaise
  • 1 stalk of celery, chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon of dill
  • 1 Tablespoon, fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon of salt (or to taste)
  • pepper to taste
  • 3-4 rolls, or French baguette (as pictured)
  • 2 Tablespoons melted butter


1. Defrost langoustine tails, and chop. Dump into a bowl. 

I love my new Martha Stewart chopping mats!

2. Add the celery, dill, parsley, salt and pepper and mix for a couple minutes until well blended. 

3. Top roll or baguette with salad mixture and brush butter on the top.

Took about 10 minutes. This makes a nice addition to the usual egg & chicken salad routine!