Sunday, February 13, 2011

dinner at place pigalle

this time around, i decided to visit place pigalle for my birthday dinner. it was a good choice. it's a pleasant little spot overlooking puget sound, just around the corner from the fish market.
when it came to selecting a wine bottle, i decided on cote du rhone, and picked the cheapest bottle for economical reasons. it was delicious, so maybe price was a good deciding factor!
my father ordered half a dozen raw oysters, which i'm not usually such a big fan of, but these were delicate, and refreshing. i liked the accompanying sauce.
i shared their green salad with my sweethearts. it had gorgonzola, spiced pecans, roasted garlic, and i thought it was a flavor explosion, far exceeding my green salad expectations.
for the main course i ordered game hen, which was perfectly cooked. my sweetheart ordered the swordfish special, which was also delicious.
for desserted, we ordered pot de creme au chocolat and rasberry pecan torte (which was more interesting than delicious, but i have high pastry standards). the chocolate was rich and enticing. we washed it down with courvoisier. all in all, a successful outing.

Monday, January 24, 2011

more soup!

soup is one of the most gratifying things to make during the colder winter months, and the william-sonoma soup book is one of my favorite resources for all things soup related. the other day i made their eastern-europe inspired sweet and sour flank soup.
first i sauteed an onion and 3 cloves garlic in vegetable oil.
then i browned my flank steak in the pot, about three minutes on each side.
next i added, in no particular order: a box of beef stock, 4 cups water, 1 head of cabbage (chopped), 1/4 cup golden raisins, 1/4 cup sugar, 1 can whole peeled tomatoes, 1 bayleaf, and the juice of 1 lemon.
after bringing the soup to a boil, i let it simmer for 1 hour, then removed and cut the flank steak. i put the pieces back in the soup, and then served. the meat was pretty tender, and i really enjoyed the sweet and sour combination. also, flank steak is a pretty economical meat option. all in all, a successful dinner venture.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

poulet au porto

i had never roasted a chicken before, and new year's eve seemed as good a time as any. with julia child to guide me, a chicken from don and joe's, and my basting companion, i set forth. we followed a strict basting schedule, taking the bird out every 8-10 minutes for a little grease bath.

about two thirds of the way through the roasting, i boiled mushrooms for 8 minutes, then put the mushroom liquid in a boil, and added a healthy dose of cream with a little cornstarch to the mushrooms. in a different pan, i added a little chicken fat, and sauteed a shallot. i then added the mushroom juice and some port, which i reduced. i then added the mushroom cream mixture, and lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.

meanwhile, the bird cooled on the cutting board, until it was read to be but into serving pieces. piece were then placed in another pan, doused in cognac, and we attempted to set fire to the bird, but it did not cooperate in this endeavor. we only got a little flame, and then added the mushroom cream sauce. the result was delicious, i have certainly never had a boozier mushroom with my dinner!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

an afternoon in fremont....

me and my sweetheart had plans to take the tour at theo chocolate factory, but before eating as much chocoloate as we wanted, we figured maybe some real food was in order....

we hit up baguette box, a place that serves some of the usual lunch staples, but mostly is famous for its sandwiches. similar to vietnamese sandwiches, these sandwiches satisfied my hunger for fresh ingredients and flavor in a way that few vietnamese sandwich shops in seattle have.

i ordered the pork shoulder, which was spectacularly tender, complimented by red wine sauce, red onion, and red peppers. key to the execution of the sandwhich was the bread: a le panier baguette. sometimes i crave a crustier baguetter for dipping and eating, but the fluffier bread that le panier offers is perfect for soaking up the sauce of my sandwhich, and helped the sandwich to mealt in my mouth (which it did).

oh yeah, theo chocolate was good too.

Friday, October 15, 2010

more eggplant!

since my trip to turkey this summer, i have been pretty much in love with eggplant. so happy i found the blog i've been pretty happy with all the recipes i've tried from that site, and keeping me from missing turkey too much.
the other day i made an eggplant stew with lentils, a couple tomatoes, three chilies, fresh mint, onion, garlic, and pomegranate molasses. i used japanese eggplant, since the recipe called for narrow eggplant. great with some rice and yoghurt. my mother doesn't usually like eggplant, but she liked this dish!

Friday, October 1, 2010

best omelette.

i made the best omelette the other day. it was part influenced by stuff in the fridge, part influenced by Frank's Produce. I sauteed some minced shallot in butter, and then added crimini mushroom, chanterelle mushroom, a little anaheim pepper, and some other local green pepper. while veggies were cooking, i grated some cheddar, and cracked eggs. i stirred fresh sage and thyme in with the eggs. yum!

Thursday, September 23, 2010


it's easy to take tom douglas for granted here in seattle, he's such an omniscient brand. however, i was curious about the food at lola, after a couple visits for drinks. my recent trip to turkey also made me curious about what passes for mediterranean fare here in seattle. i ended up quite pleased with the results....

i started my meal with their house red (don't quite remember the blend, i think it was made by chinook winery). i ended splitting a carafe of it with my father, so i definately enjoyed it. we had a garlic spread with pita (so good, drizzled with olive oil), and a chicken and a pork skewer. the pork had a honey harissa glaze, which did not disappoint.

for dinner, we ended up sharing two of the meze. 1) heirloom tomatoe salad with aragula. the heirlooms were perfect, and i enjoyed the dressing which had basil in it. one of the better salads ive had in a restaraunt. we also had mantı, a lamb ravioli with yoghurt, one of the dishes iate in turkey. this was different from the more basic turkish version, but really good. satisfied my mantı craving.

for dessert, we had baklava with pistachio ice cream. really good ice cream, the baklava was not quite up to gülluoğlu standards, but neyise. i left satisfied, but curious about the rest of the menu. next time.....