Eating out, cooking in, cooking out and our opinions on everything culinary

Monday, November 21, 2005

And we're off, 3 days until Thanksgiving

I don't know about most of you, but being chefs, we are always in charge of one thing or another at Thanksgiving. And what better time to showcase your talents, and 40k's worth of culinary knowlegde to stump and impress your family and friends?

This year we are in charge of appetizers, and I'm sad to say I have only figured out 3 so far. 2 are from Rachel Ray (scary I realize)....one is a White Cheddar and Caramelized Onion hot cheese dip, and the other is something she calls Everything Nuts. I'm in search of another, light appetizer item, but so far nothing. I could always do the forever loved goat cheese, and fig inside an endive leaf, but that's so been done. Also, I already have a cheese appetizer. I'll continue to ponder this today, and on my way to Whole Foods tonight.

I'm also bringing a spice bundt ake recipe that I also found on Food Network (Freak), and I am excited to have something other than just pumpkin pie. Everytime I make pumpkin pie, someone has to complain about it being either too moist, or something, which makes no sense to me but whatever.

Back to searching for appetizer ideas, oh, and silly work :) Cali

Monday, November 14, 2005

Birthdays are fun...

So over the weekend we went to a new restaurant so of course I have to give a review. The restaurant is called Union Cattle Company and is in Hermosa Beach, CA.

Being that they are a chop house, I had to order steak, and I was feeling finicky, so I had the fillet. Mmmm salty peppery crust, delicious twice baked potato, and wonderful BBQ baked beans. I recommend. Dinner for 2 set us back about 65.00 which I don't consider too much, for what we got.

Also it's fun to watch drunken idiots and sober folks alike try to ride the mechanical bull. They have more guts than I I'll tell ya. It was a fun time. My only complaints were it was (1) crowded (what do you expect for a Sat. night), and it was loud, and DARK. More of a bar type atmosphere than a restaurant. I bet it's different in the daytime.

I definitely give it a thumbs up :)

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Cranberry Port Wine Reduction

Okay seriously Cranberry Port Wine Reduction is one of the most amazingly complex flavors I have ever experienced. It is part of a recipe that Ben and I did for a wine tasting at a wine shop in Minnesota a few years back. I would say that by far, this is the best meal I've ever had in my entire life.

Cardamom Crusted Caribou Tenderloin with Gingerbread, boniato squash puree, and Cranberry Port Wine Reduction. Unbelievable. Anyhow I made it last night with aged rib eye steak instead of caribou. I have never had aged beef before, and it is definitely a little gamey. Not something I could eat everyday, but not bad to say the least, and the texture was unbelievably soft and juicy. Delicious. By the way the steak I used was not Niman Ranch, although I used their site to show you what I was talking about. Their meat products are superior here in California. I love their bacon, and sausage, and blah blah blah they rock. Oh and their Corned Beef is outstanding.

Anyhow, to go with the aged rib eyes, I made the cranberry port wine reduction, and amazing Mashed Potatoes. Also, Whole Foods had this really awesome Irish butter, that was herbed. MMMMM. Anyhow we had that and some sauteed baby asparagus. That was a rich and delicious meal I'll tell you. No dessert required. We wound up going to the Coffee Bean for an Ultimate Ice Blended Mocha to finish things off. And Ben remembered that there was extra cookie dough at my mom's so we stopped off there for him.

All in all a very successful meal. I think we may track down caribou and make that for our family Xmas Holiday Party instead of Fondue. Either that or I'm thinking maybe Brunch. I can't decide yet.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Salty like a chocolate chip cookie

Isn't it totally true, chocolate chip cookies with just that hint of saltiness are so delicious. I worked for a pastry chef that said that, and I totally knew what he meant without another thought.

Chocolate chip cookies are a preference thing, but also, an art. I hate to admit it but my favorites are actually from Martha Stewarts Comfort Foods cookbook. Not having it here yesterday, I went to her website and found a recipe for "chewy" chocolate chip cookies. They came out pretty darn good. Brought a bunch to my office today, we'll see what people think :) They were a hit with my dad and with Ben last night.

We took baby Bex to Ugo last night, a little Italian joint on Pico, across from the Westside Pavillion. Had to give her a taste of true pizza, since all she's used to is what mommy and daddy order, DOMINOES (GASP). And at 5 years, you probably don't know any different. But I swear, she ate caesar salad and pizza, and all this at about 9pm after already having dinner at home. She's something else. Everything was great and then of course we had to stop at Cold Stone, and she had some mint ice cream with oreos mixed in and ate almost ALL of it. You go girl.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Wow it's been awhile

Wow it's been awhile hasn't it? I forgot about this fun little thing called a blog.

Man I miss cooking, but I'm so lazy. I get home from a 10 hr day as a Project Manager, and the last thing I want to do is 1) make dirty dishes or 2) clean them up. Hell no.

Well the thing is this, I want to make a lasagna, I gotta find that recipe...I will bring some to the office, that is if Ben lets me get that far with it. Mmm the though is making me hungry.

I think I'm going to start doing some restaurant reviews on here for the West Los Angeles area :)

Take care, Cali


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