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Ideal Topping Reference: Pepperoni, Mushrooms, Olives & Pineapple.

July 22nd, 2013 No comments

Funny Food 74

If unlimited toppings, add Jalapenos, Artichoke Hearts and Roasted Garlic to the Pizza.

Meal Kit Comparison: Which Is Best?

April 13th, 2019 1 comment

It’s ABOUT TIME… my long promised Meal Kit Comparison post. We tried Sun Basket, Gobble, Marley Spoon, Green Chef, Purple Carrot, Dinnerly and Freshly. We rate and review each of these meal kit companies, recipes and respective ingredients below. I learned A LOT and report about it after making and trying the aforementioned and 100+ Blue Apron meal kits.

Meal Kit Comparison – Starts with Sun Basket

Sun Basket Packaging

Sun Basket — Fast Chicken Salad with Kale, Kiwi and Apples (Recipe 1). Top photo. The Kale arrived pre-cut. I found myself picking out the inferior, dry pieces. I would rather chop it myself. I usually remove the stem/center, but it was included in the chopped Kale. The provided dressing was just okay. And the Coconut Flakes would’ve been better toasted, seemed like an after-thought garnish. We (Matt & I) rate each recipe starting with this one.

Sun Basket Recipe 1: Matt 6 1/2, Shelly 6 (Out of 10).

Greek Salmon over Zucchini Noodles and Wilted Greens

Sun Basket — Greek Salmon over Zucchini Noodles and Wilted Greens (Recipe 2). I tossed out the pre-chopped Greens due to a bad smell. The Salmon was dry, though not overcooked. I liked the Tomato and Olive Relish. We liked the Zucchini Noodles, but they’re hard to stir and preserve as ‘Noodles’ when cooking. That’s fine, but good to know.

Sun Basket Recipe 2: Matt 6 1/2, Shelly 5 1/2.

Mediterranean-style Cod with Artichoke Hearts and Kalamata Olives

Sun Basket – Mediterranean-style Cod with Artichoke Hearts and Kalamata Olives (Recipe 3). Cod quality wasn’t that great. Potatoes didn’t have much flavor though Salt and Peppered. I liked steaming the Fish over the Vegetables. Learned how well this cooking method works. Dish was easy to make and clean-up.

Sun Basket Recipe 3: Matt 6, Shelly 6.

Sun Basket Recipe Booklet

Sun Basket Overall — Menus are just okay, not as exciting as others, seemed somewhat repetitive with ingredients. Though Menu is international, which is good. Website is friendly and easy to use. Choose (3) out of (18) different recipes/meal kits. Recipes arrive in booklet form. Also within it are all the recipes you didn’t choose, which is nice. Best recipe score was 6 1/2.

Gobble Review Notes

Meal Kit Comparison – Trying Gobble

Gobble – Nice packaging, similar to Blue Apron. Received one incorrect recipe card, but was easily able to print the correct one from Gobble’s website. They provide smaller recipe cards than other companies.

Gobble – Pan-Roasted Chicken in Three Peppercorn Sauce with Green Beans and Mashed Potatoes (Recipe 1). Potatoes were not good. Gravy made up for it. Chicken was tough, though not overcooked. Odd cuts of chicken were provided. Not as pretty as the online photos.

Pan Roasted Chicken

This is how the Mashed Potatoes and Gravy arrived (below). No bueno.

Gobble Recipe 1: Matt 7, Shelly 6.

Louisiana Shrimp with White Cheddar Grits

Gobble – Louisiana Shrimp with White Cheddar Grits (Recipe 2). Had to further devein the ‘deveined’ Shrimp. Like the Mashed Potatoes in Recipe 1, I don’t like unloading grits from a plastic bag to heat them in the microwave. Also, I didn’t like the pre-cut trinity. It looked a bit degraded in freshness, translucent Onions.

Pre-cut Trinity and bagged Grits, etc.

Gobble Recipe 2: Matt 7 1/2, Shelly 7.

Brazilian Black Bean Stew

Gobble – Brazilian Black Bean Stew with Roasted Squash and Swiss Chard (Recipe 3). I had to toss-out the provided Swiss Chard. It was too dried out. It’s scary not knowing what’s inside a compact bag of pre-cut Greens. Good thing we’re growing our own Swiss Chard. I love the idea and components of this recipe, but the pre-made beans and rice were just okay. I plan to re-create this recipe sometime. Our score for this recipe is below. Best overall recipe score was 8.

Gobble Recipe 3: Matt 8, Shelly 7 1/2.

Meal Kit Comparison – Trying Marley Spoon

Marley Spoon – Box was delayed a day, because company didn’t have enough ice to ship. Recipe card photos are dull in color and paper is un-glossed. Nice packaging. Largest, tallest box received.

Marley Spoon Packaging

Marley Spoon – Cheesy Roasted Pepper Panini with Goat Cheese & Spinach and Side Salad (Recipe 1). Too much filling for the Panini, it overflowed. A Bun for the Panini Bread is not the best option. No photo.

Marley Spoon Recipe 1: Matt 8, Shelly 8.

Cilantro Chicken and Rice

Marley Spoon – Cilantro Chicken and Rice with Bell Pepper and Lime (Recipe 2). Flavorful, but wouldn’t garnish it with raw onions again. It’s unnecessary and over takes the dish. Having to use a blender or food processor is a first for a boxed Meal Kit. Good thing I have one.

Marley Spoon Recipe 2: Matt 7 1/2, Shelly 8.

Four Cheese Ravioli Alla Norma

Marley Spoon – Four Cheese Ravioli Alla Norma with Crispy Garlic Breadcrumbs (Recipe 3). It was super easy to make and very good.

Marley Spoon Recipe 3: Matt 8, Shelly 8.

Overall… good quality, nice packaging, tasty meals and good recipe selections. Marley Spoon costs about the same as Blue Apron, my long-time favorite Meal Kit company (so-far). Best recipe score for Marley Spoon was 8.

Meal Kit Comparison – Trying Green Chef

Green Chef also offers Paleo, Vegan, Keto and Gluten-free meal kit options. Very nice packaging. All looked good, though much was pre-prepared.

Green Chef Meal Kit Ingredients

A pre-cut Red Pepper was provided for a recipe. I want a whole one. There are small Red Bell Peppers. Pre-cut Onions too. I don’t like that either. They degrade, but I used them, and it didn’t ruin the meal.

Harissa Spiced Tuna Steaks

Green Chef – Harissa Spiced Tuna Steaks and Apricot Tomato Sauce, Kale Pistachios and Couscous (Recipe 1). The Tuna was nice looking. Recipe said to cook the Yellowfin Tuna 3 to 5 minutes per side, but was too long for the thin Fish provided. I cooked ours 2 1/2 minutes per side and it was still overcooked, as expected, but all was flavorful.

Green Chef Recipe 1: Matt 8, Shelly 8.

Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps

Green Chef – Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps with Quinoa, Toasted Nuts and Seeds, with Lemon Pesto Aioli (Recipe 2). I liked the Couscous with the Vinegar, Agave and mixed Toasted Nuts. The Dressing was just okay, pre-made. Homemade would have been better.

Green Chef Recipe 2: Matt 8, Shelly 8.

Cheese Steak Stuffed Peppers

Green Chef – Cheese Steak Stuffed Pepper with Provolone Cheese, Spiced Potato Hash with Red Peppers (Recipe 3). Uneven, pre-cut Onions and Grated Cheese were provided. The small Onion pieces burned a little while cooking. Not a good thing. However, not a bad flavor overall. Our score for this recipe is below. Best recipe score was 8.

Green Chef Recipe 3: Matt 7, Shelly 7.

Meal Kit Comparison – Trying Purple Carrot

Purple Carrot Packaging

Purple Carrot – All was fresh and impressive. Some stuff was pre-cut, but mostly whole ingredients. Only the hardest thing to cut, the Squash was pre-cut, which was helpful. A booklet of all recipes was provided, as like Sun Basket. Only six recipes to choose from online at this time.

Black Bean & Polenta Casserole

Purple Carrot – Black Bean and Polenta Casserole with Chile Butter (Recipe 1). The large bag of Spinach was very fresh. I was a little nervous about the Vegan Cream Cheese and Vegan Butter provided for this recipe, but didn’t notice a difference. That was nice to discover.

Slice of the Black Bean and Polenta Casserole

Purple Carrot Recipe 1: Matt 7, Shelly 7.

Autumn Bibimbap

Purple Carrot – Autumn Bibimbap with Gochujang Brussels Sprouts and Sesame Aioli (Recipe 2). I didn’t use the Kimchi or Vegenaise (Mayo instead). I didn’t like the color of the Vegenaise, yellow-ish. I liked the Brussels Sprouts with Gochujang. The Fried Rice ended up too hard. Seems 5 to 7 minutes is too long not to stir the Rice. I don’t know. Kind of a weird recipe, which I like, but it didn’t work properly.

Purple Carrot Recipe 2: Matt 6 1/2, Shelly 6.

Butternut Squash Gnocchi

Purple Carrot – Butternut Squash Gnocchi with Cranberries and Hazelnuts (Recipe 3). A beautiful photo of this recipe is on Purple Carrot’s booklet cover. Had to toss out the Broccoli Rabe for this recipe, since it didn’t last a week. Used Swiss Chard from our garden instead. Added leftover sauteed Onions before the Squash. All was tasty with the Dried Cranberries, and had good texture with the Toasted Hazelnuts.

Purple Carrot Recipe 3: Matt 8 1/2, Shelly 8.

Black Bean and Polenta Casserole Ingredients

Recipes were grouped in plastic bags. I prefer no bags, loose ingredients or in paper bags, because all seems to stay fresher longer.

Butternut Squash Gnocchi Ingredients

Vegan Butter and Cream Cheese work okay. You won’t notice the difference. Though I’m still sketchy on Vegenaise (Mayo’s substitute). Someday perhaps, or not. Best recipe score was 8 1/2.

Meal Kit Comparison – Trying Dinnerly

Spinach and Ricotta Calzones

Dinnerly – Spinach and Ricotta Calzones with Tomato Garlic Dipping Sauce (Recipe 1). Crust was large and could have used more filling. I added Peppers to the filling too, and could have added more. It had a good flavor and texture.

Dinnerly Recipe 1: Matt 7, Shelly 7.

Dinnerly is one of the least expensive Meal Kits available. You download the recipe cards from the internet, instead of them being provided. The menus make me think that I might as well make the dish myself and save even more money. Easy ideas. Dinnerly’s website functions just like Marley Spoon’s. The companies are related. Dinnerly is budget Marley.

Sausage and Kale Soup Ingredients

Dinnerly – Sausage and Kale Soup with Pasta and Parmesan (Recipe 2). It was just okay. A little bland. It made a lot of Soup. I added Beans for extra credit. I like the ‘extra credit’ options listed on the recipe cards. Helps company keep costs down, while suggesting something you might already have in your pantry.

Dinnerly Recipe 2: Matt 6 1/2, Shelly 6 1/2.

Banh Mi Burger

Dinnerly – Banh Mi Burger with Pickled Carrots and Cucumbers (Recipe 3). I didn’t like the provided Chipotle Mayo, weird taste. Would rather make my own combination.

Dinnerly Recipe 3: Matt 7, Shelly 6.

Overall… everything was just okay. With the right recipe choice, it could be a good dinner option, due to its price. And now I want to try Every Plate, Dinnerly’s budget meal kit rival I just discovered. I will amend this post after we try it. Best recipe score was 7.

Freshly = Pre-Made Meals

Meal Kit Comparison – Trying Freshly (Not a Meal Kit, a Pre-Made Meal)

Freshly – Choose between 30 meals. Just heat in the microwave and eat. They arrived nicely packaged between three layers of ice packs. They are best heated in their respective packs, and then plated, to keep moist.

Freshly Meal Samples

Freshly – We, mostly I, tried 6 different meals. Balsamic Turkey (Meal 1). The Vegetables were dry, cut too small and bland. The Turkey was tough. The Balsamic Mushrooms were good. Matt 6, Shelly 5. Pork Al Pastor (Meal 2). It was flavorful, could use a tortilla or chips for varied texture. Matt 6, Shelly 7. Moroccan Style Tagine (Meal 3). It was just okay. Had to pick out a few tough Vegetable Skins, and the small Onions in it were hard and not satisfying to eat. Seemed like a heated, frozen meal I’ve had before. And not any better. Shelly 5.

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Freshly – Moroccan Style Tagine

Freshly – Buffalo Chicken and Cauliflower (Meal 4). Chicken was tender and good. Cauliflower was just okay, a little bland. Shelly 6. Southwest Chicken Bowl (Meal 5). It should have been tasty, but it was bland and dry. Needed Salt and Pepper and more sauce. The Corn in Freshly’s dishes seems once frozen or canned, not fresh. The Vegetables, Beans and Quinoa were dry too. The Chicken was tender and well cooked. Shelly 6. Meatballs and Spaghetti Squash (Meal 6). The Meatballs where okay. Sauce was very good. On a side note, I finally decided I don’t like the texture of Spaghetti Squash. Shelly 5.

Freshly Packaging

What I learned from all…

I want to prepare everything on my own. I don’t want to receive anything pre-cut. I never purchased pre-cut items in the grocery store. Also, few ingredients can be combined to make something great. And, I can save money not buying a Meal Kit every week. I can make simple, fancy meals on my own from what I’ve learned from Blue Apron, elsewhere, and from this Meal Kit Comparison. I also saved money taking advantage of the introductory offers from each of these companies. You should too. See their pricing below.*

Meal Kit Comparison Pricing:

Sun Basket – Introductory offer is 50% off = $25.

Gobble – Introductory offer is 30% off = $42. Generally $79/week.

Marley Spoon – Introductory offer = $30.75. Generally $61.50/week.

Green Chef – Introductory offer is 40% off = $38. Generally $79/week.

Purple Carrot – Introductory offer $25 off. Generally $72/week.

Dinnerly – Introductory offer is $30. Generally $40/week.

Freshly – Introductory offer $45 for 6 Meals. Generally $60/week.

*PRICES are estimated and subject to change. See respective websites for up-to-date pricing and other information.

The Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen: Grubs’ Scratch Made Surprise.

September 4th, 2017 No comments

The Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen — I love rock and roll and great food, especially together.  I had been to The Slidebar before to see a Black Sabbath cover band, but never ate there until recently. I didn’t know that The Slidebar’s full-name literally includes the word kitchen.  Now I know.

We were invited to The Slidebar to try the Cali Bandito Tacos — YES!  Yes, because they are made with Gringo Bandito Hot Sauce and we are fans of The Offspring, plus it’s good Hot Sauce. Dexter Holland, the singer of The Offspring makes Gringo Bandito Hot Sauce.

Carne Asada and Portobello Mushrooms are marinated in Gringo Bandito’s Original Red Hot Sauce for The Slidebar’s Cali Bandito Tacos.  The Mushrooms are marinated for the vegetarian version of the Cali Bandito Taco.  We tried both and really liked both.  Though I often prefer vegetarian, the Carne Asada Taco was my favorite.  The Beef was tender and very flavorful.

We’re told these Tacos pair best with a Modern Times IPA and we agree that the Orderville paired well. And as good as the Red Hot Sauce is, I like Gringo Bandito’s Green Hot Sauce better.

I wish I was there (above) eating them right now with this photographer.

Aside from The Slidebar’s cool interior, exterior and bands, I learned that most of their food is made from scratch.  The Salsa, Chips and Beans on the plate with the Tacos are all made from scratch.  And the Tortillas for the Tacos too.  All made from scratch.  It’s not just bar food.

I am impressed with Chef Brandon at The Slidebar.  Each dish tasted to be made with love.

My biggest take away — The SlideBAR is The Slidebar Rock-N-Roll KITCHEN.  I want more of their made from scratch food.  They say… Grub You Crave – Scratch Made, and we know it’s true.

Related:  The nearby Burger Parlor makes a Gringo Bandito Tostada Burger that’s terrific too.

Grateful To Grow: The Start Of This Year’s Garden.

April 29th, 2017 No comments

Last year we planted six Tomato plants in one raised bed and this year we only planted four.  Though we love an abundance of Tomatoes, we could hardly get to them.  It became a Tomato jungle we had to forge through.  They look sparse now, but we hope to have the same luck this year.

In our other raised garden, we planted Jalapenos, Poblano Peppers, Japanese Eggplant, Red, Brown & White Onions, Cilantro, Curly Parsley, Purple Basil, Lime Basil, Pineapple Sage and Thyme.

We’re seeing at least ten small clusters of Grapes growing on the old Grape vine.

We bought a two-inch Boysenberry vine from Knott’s Berry Farm last year and we’re happy that it continues to grow.  We hope to see Boysenberries on it some year down the road.

Matt has a green thumb, and especially a Pineapple green thumb — We have one starting above, one maturing below, and four others that we’re hoping will do something.  He’s grown several.

Wild Blackberries grow on the other side of the house — They’re great to have, but VERY thorn-ey.

Serrano Peppers grow throughout the year in a couple other pots, whether we want them or not.

Zucchini is growing in another corner of the yard.  I have not grown it before.

And Oyster Mushrooms are growing in the house — In a Mini Mushroom Farm we got from Home Depot.  We soaked its internal plastic bag in water for a day, cut an ‘X’ in the front of it and returned it to its box to grow.  Pictured below is five days growth.  It’s fun to watch them grow so fast.

For non-edible enjoyment, flowers grow in the side planter below.  We planted hundreds of miscellaneous flower seeds to yield a flower-grab-bag to surprise us all summer long.

I had the sign below made for our garden shed — FW stands for Freis West.  Most of the Freis live back East.  In Michigan and Wisconsin.  They’re Freis East and we’re Freis West (FW for short).

We’re also growing Meyer Lemons, Limes, Tangelos and Rosemary (not pictured) and tend to our gardens daily.  We’re grateful to see all grow and will share the abundance in a few months.

Photos Of Food & Fun On The Carnival Inspiration (Weekend Cruise).

October 11th, 2015 No comments

Carnival Cruise Desserts

What to do on your birthday?  Leave on a cruise, especially if you don’t have to fly first or drive far. I’m lucky to live by the Long Beach Port, where cruise ships depart, so that’s what we did.  Yay!

Lobster Dinner

I was willing to go on any cruise I could walk to, only if I had to that is.

Carnival Inspiration Food

And it was the Carnival Inspiration that set out for Ensenada the very day of my big day.

BYOB

If you’re considering the Carnival Inspiration, snapshots of the food and ship are shown here.

Seared Ahi

Though Carnival has or had somewhat of a bad reputation in comparison to other cruise lines, we have no complaints.  The Inspiration is an old ship, but we didn’t mind it.  We’d prefer new, but knew we would make the most of it.  And we did.  Here are a few photos of our experience.

Cheese for Dessert

The food was good.  We liked everything okay, but didn’t fall for any specific dish.

IMG_0711

I didn’t take notes and don’t recall the names of the dishes, but the pictures show what you might get on a 3 – 4 day Carnival cruise — Seared Ahi, Escargot, Lobster, Ceviche, Beef Carpaccio, Salmon and Chicken dishes, Caesar Salads, Flat Breads and Cheese plates, just to name a few.

Flat Bread

We had a bit of everything, plus what was available at the ever-changing Buffet (pictured at top).

Oysters Rock

Escargot, common on cruise ships (above) — Matt had it.  Me, been there, done that and over it.

Ceviche

Ceviche (above) — Good, but needed more chips.  It’s your right to have more of anything.

Escargo

Stuffed Mushrooms (above).

IMG_0718

Carpaccio (above) — I should have had more than one, since it’s fairly costly in restaurants.

Salmon

Various Salmon, Chicken and Beef dishes were available each evening in the dining room.

Chicken

Carnival could work on plating as you see, but most dishes tasted better than they looked.

Beef

The Inspiration has a Game Room where we played Jenga — I don’t recall who won, probably me. 🙂

Game Room

We enjoyed the sunsets on deck too.

Sunset Dinner

And whipped it up Gangnam Style in the Dining Room with the waiters.

Cruise Dining Room

Overall, we would cruise with Carnival again.  It was a nice getaway and HAPPY birthday for me.

Best Dessert In Fullerton: Sticky Toffee Pudding At The Olde Ship.

January 9th, 2015 No comments

Sticky Toffee Pudding at The Old Ship

Have you had the Sticky Toffee Pudding at The Olde Ship British Pub & Restaurant?  It’s one of the BEST Desserts I’ve had in my life and it’s perfectly served in warm Heavy Cream.

Sticky Toffee Pudding

I’ve had it three times and still can’t stop thinking about going back for it again.  I suggest going to The Olde Ship each time we’ve dined out recently, but my husband needs more food variety.  It’s a rich dessert that’s best shared, so not to be put over the Sugar edge.  The unsweetened Heavy Cream balances the sweetness beautifully.  I love The Olde Ship for this dessert, other authentic British dishes and its cozy atmosphere, especially during Christmas time.

IMG_9789

I searched for The Olde Ship’s Sticky Toffee Pudding recipe online, but didn’t find it, I’m told it’s made with Dried Apricots and other things.  I may attempt a copycat recipe after a little more study.  I visited The British Grocer, a store run by the same people at The Olde Ship in Fullerton and Santa Ana.  The British Grocer is in Fullerton, down the street from The Olde Ship British Pub & Restaurant on North Harbor Boulevard.  I’ve yet to visit its Santa Ana location, but hear it’s larger.

Heinz Sticky Toffee Pudding

Pictured directly above is a prepared, canned Sticky Toffee Pudding I purchased from The British Grocer.  I was told by a clerk there that’s its flavor is most like the one made at The Olde Ship. The store offered two options, one that’s frozen and this one that was canned.

Boiling Sticky Toffee Pudding

Surprisingly this one is made by Heinz and it does have a similar, rich flavor that’s good served with warm Heavy Cream, though it has a different, more Bread Pudding like texture, rather than a loose, Bran Muffin texture like the Sticky Toffee Pudding prepared at The Olde Ship.  I’ll buy more of both.

STP Label

I served the Heinz Sticky Toffee Pudding the same way, which made it taste great.

Heinz STP (Boiled)

It’s romantic and beautiful inside the Pub, with hundreds of lights in December.

Me at The Old Ship

Pictured below is the Great British Breakfast that’s served with a Banger, Baked Beans, Irish Bacon, a Tomato, Mushrooms and Fried Toast.  At first glance, the Toast looks basic, but it’s fried. I thought I’d like that more than I did, but toasted is better.  I like the Baked Beans a lot.

Breakfast at The Old Ship

The Olde Ship’s Famous Clam Chowder is very good too, with lots of Clams.

Clam Chowder

Back to why this post started… The magnificent Sticky Toffee Pudding at The Old Ship (below).

Sticky Toffee Pudding in Heavy Cream

Until we meet again, aka when my husband is ready to go back — I have to be reasonable.

Best Brussels Sprouts In Town Unexpectedly Found At The Egg Cracker.

November 7th, 2014 No comments

Egg Cracker Brussels Sprouts

I’ve had a lot of great Brussels Sprouts lately, but DANG — The Brussels Sprouts glazed with Honey and Sriracha at the Egg Cracker Restaurant in Fullerton are the BEST.  They’re perfectly crispy on the outside, sweet and hot, and each is tender enough to eat, which is very important.  If any are still too hard to eat, it’s often bitter and inedible though served.  Twice we’ve had the Brussels Sprouts at the Egg Cracker and each little Sprout was cooked to perfection, which is specifically important we learned from one of the owners.

Egg Cracker Restaurant

Not only do they have the Best Brussels Sprouts, but the Egg Cracker Restaurant has one of the best-priced, high-quality, convenient-time Happy Hours — It’s from 3:00 pm – 9:00 pm, so you don’t need to speed after work to get there.  You order off a menu too and the price for the quality is fantastic.  The Brussels Sprouts are $3 during Happy Hour and $5 regularly.

Egg Cracker Happy Hour Menu

Current Happy Hour Food Menu (above) and Chilaquiles (below).

Egg Cracker Happy Hour Dish

We also tried the Portobello Fries (below), which are sliced Portobello Mushrooms with a Panko Breading to form Fries — They’re meaty and crunchy and good with the Sauce.

Egg Cracker Portobello Fries

Zucchini Bread (below) is served to all, with all, Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner — I think.

Egg Cracker HH

We had breakfast at the Egg Cracker twice before and received it then also.

Egg Cracker Campfire Pancakes

For Dessert we had one of the Egg Cracker’s most popular Breakfast items, the Campfire Pancakes with Chocolate, Graham Cracker Crumbles and Homemade Marshmallow Cream.  I just love the Egg Cracker’s MENU.  There are many things I want to try — Breakfast is served all day too.  And it should be mentioned that Beer & Wine is only $3 during Happy Hour.

Egg Cracker Receipt

We’re going back for more of everything (and much we have yet to try).

The Original Umami Burger: What’s Not To Like About Its Definition?

March 28th, 2014 No comments

Umami 002

Umami:  A taste sensation that is meaty or savory and is produced by several amino acids and nucleotides (as glutamate and aspartate) — It’s the definition of Umami.  Understand now?

Umami 007

How about this… Umami is a savory taste, one of the five basic tastes (together with sweet, sour, bitter and salty).  A loanword from the Japanese, Umami can be translated as “pleasant savory taste” — It’s basically a description, NOT specific ingredients.  I didn’t know all this.

Umami 001

Pictured is the Original Umami Burger from the Umami Restaurant Group’s Umami Burger.

Umami 006

And Beer Battered Onion Rings from Umami Burger’s Sides Menu.  They were good, but I prefer thinner Onions.  Theirs are thick with too much Onion — Not sure if they are always like that?!

Umami 003

As for the famous Original Umami Burger, I regret to inform that we thought it was just okay.  I’d heard great things about it over the past couple years, but we didn’t find it mind blowingly different.  It’s quite rich actually.  We like its ingredients… Shiitake Mushrooms, Caramelized Onions, Roasted Tomato, a Parmesan Crisp and Umami Ketchup, but idk — It was pleasantly savory, but other Burgers have been even more pleasantly savory, if allowed.

Umami 009

It’s not inexpensive, but had to try it and you may still want to too.  I’d like to try Umami Burger’s Ahi Tuna Burger.  It looks and sounds impressive, like many of Umami Burger’s other Burgers.

A True Candidate For The Good, The Bad And The Funny.

January 4th, 2013 No comments

Funny Food 44

I marvel at the trees and have always been fascinated by the brain — And I’m keen on Broccoli and Nuts and Mushrooms of all kinds.  That about covers it (at least here now).  Chow Ciao. 😉

The Old Vine Café At The Camp: We Are Still Talking About It.

May 24th, 2012 No comments

WOW!  We had one of the best meals ever at the Old Vine Café at The Camp.

It’s a relatively small restaurant with airy, open indoor/outdoor seating.

We thoroughly enjoyed our patio seat and hope for the same one next time.

We like the Tasting Menus so much, we want to try them ALL.

There are 9 Tasting Menus to choose from, which are basically four course meals, with Wine paired with each course — The food portions and Wine pours are extremely generous too.

The Old Vine Café is stylish and its virtuoso menu is presented on painted canvas.

It was hard to decide, but we chose The Premium Tasting Menu and Savory Tasting Menu.  

TOAST between each course and if you fancy a Wine, take a bottle home.  We fell for the 2007 Von Hovel Riesling Spatlese, Mosel Saar Ruver Germany.  It was crisp and not too sweet.

The pictured are generally described — See Dinner Menu for complete (better) descriptions.

At top from first course down, we savored Large Shrimp with a Lemon Grass Curry Sauce.

And Seasonal Greens with Crispy Prosciutto, Fried Onions and Maytag Blue Cheese, a giant Hand Made Raviolo with Smoked Duck, Goat Cheese and Porcini Mushrooms in Brown Butter with Sage, and Prosciutto Wrapped Baby Artichokes with a Citrus Infused Olive Oil.

Char Grilled Lamb Chops with a Blueberry Malbec Demi Glace — The Sauce was magical.

Beef Tenderloin Stroganoff with Shitake Mushrooms served over Hand Made Fettuccini.

Artisan Cheese with Marcona Almonds and Fresh Fruit.

Dark Chocolate Cream Cheese Cake — Cheers to that with Port.

All is set near tall pine trees, a CAMP fire, hammock and the largest wind chimes I’ve seen.

Mark McDonald is the Old Vine Café’s Chef and owner, and a true expert on Local Cuisine, where Orange County’s Best Restaurants are highlighted .  I’m also a listed expert and humbled to be named amongst others far more knowledge, especially after this meal.

It’s worth the sometimes parking hassles of The Camp — Once you’re there, it’s a delicious escape.  I love it, I love it, I love it, like a Joyologist, and should have my leg kicked up high.

Already ready for the next OVC Tasting Menu.

Food Coloring Series: Once A Brownie, Always A Blondie, Now Brown.

January 10th, 2012 No comments

The New Face of Food Coloring is here on Nibbles of Tidbits with a Jelly Belly nose, since we’ve arrived at BROWN — Do you need a drop of color?  It’s a magnificent thing, from the depths of the ocean through the sky.  Our Food Coloring Series started with orange to spotlight links to OC Blogs, then kaleidoscoped into purpleyellow, green, blue, red, white and black.  Without further ado, brown kicks off with a RECIPE for these Puppy Cupcakes.  Awe.

 Continuing with Sherry Mushrooms with Pine Nuts, on my ‘To Cook List’ that’s too long.

Steak Au Poivre by Alton Brown — It has to be good.  Filet makes the brown and red list.

Cookie decorating ideas for any color — Brown and White Bite Size Cookies pictured here.

Beef on Weck — This Sandwich looks so good to me.  I can almost taste it all with the Pickle.

I love Candy Buffets and once set-up a mini buffet with my favorite flavor.

I like the feel of this photo, but is that Canned Bread?  I want to provide credit — Is it yours?

Mounds Brownie — I once was a Brownie, while still a Blondie, and won a ribbon for it too.

Kumato Brown Tomatoes — I think they’re interesting, but I’m more impressed by the blog I found ’em on.  It’s called Eat at Joe’s and it anonymously reviews all things Trader Joe’s.

I choose a Sugar Donut most often and the runner-up will always be any HOT Donut.

Chocolate Bar Brownies (above) and the RECIPE.

A Chocolate Keyboard — To eat or to write, that is the question.

 Rock Candy made with Brown Sugar.

Instant personality with a marker!  Funny Eggs — I want to replicate ’em.

Smile inside and out — Grateful for Bacon & Eggs on a t-shirt or rock in Carlsbad.

Brown Sugar Lil’ Smokies wrapped in Bacon — The RECIPE is here.

Which Sugar/Azucar doesn’t belong?  Do you remember that from Sesame Street?

A Giant Hostess Cupcake Cake and Step-by-Step RECIPE.

Chocolate Fountains — What a sight and site it came from.  Where’s the Strawberries?

I want to dine here with friends and Wine.  It’s so beautiful — Photo Credit.

Bread in many forms is mostly brown.

This cow wants to know what you’re looking at — How now brown cow.

Seasons 52: They Promise Nothing On Menu Is Over 475 Calories.

December 21st, 2011 1 comment

Seasons 52 food sure looks and tastes like it’s over 475 calories, but they promise it’s not.

First, a big thank you goes to our super awesome Server, Julianne and management for the Wine — Though there by default, at one point there was nowhere else I wanted to be.  I walked in feeling down about recent events and left well-fed, optimistic and confident.

Just sayin’ the service and food hit the spot this night, on the patio at Seasons 52 Fresh Grill.

We had Shrimp Stuffed Mushrooms, a Sonoma Goat Cheese Ravioli, Chipotle Shrimp, and Steak and Cremini Mushroom Flatbread — Their menu changes with the weeks and seasons.

Next time I’m saving room and time for the Mini Indulgences — They’re so cute and look tasty.

The Mandarin Orange Cosmopolitan is superb and practically two with a second icy pour.

Outdoor patio view at Seasons 52, with heat lamps and a fireplace in December.

Seasons 52 occupies the space below The Capital Grille at South Coast Plaza.

This day I realized one’s perception is equal to nothing on earth and all continues to be possible for the naive.  There’s a Seasons 52, turn, turn, turn, and a time to every purpose under Heaven — A time to eat, a time to sleep, a time to leap, a time to bleeeeep, a time to get deep, a time to keep, a time to say more than a peep and a time to drive a Jeep. 😉

Maggiano’s Little Italy: Marco’s Meal Deal Is The Tit-Tallys.

October 26th, 2011 No comments

Have you heard about Marco’s Meal For Two at Maggiano’s Little Italy?

It’s more like a meal for four than two, and it’s only $39.95 any day at Maggiano’s.

You choose any Appetizer, Two Classic Pastas and a Dessert (plus more later).

We opted for the Stuffed Mushrooms, Mom’s Lasagna Marinara, Baked Rigatoni Pomodoro and Tiramisu — All was generous in size and amazing to eat.  We’d go back again for the same.

And as if that’s not enough, you get to take home two additional Classic Pastas.

Further details are shown above — See MENU for Classic Pasta options.

Cheers to a wonderful Italian meal in Little Italy for dinner.

Two Take Home Classic Pastas, plus leftovers to enjoy a couple times after — A fine value.

The above was pegged an Oil & Vinegar Pac Man and post title includes a fictitious word inspired by another, who expressed Maggiano’s is ‘tops’ in three other letters after the t.

So many love Maggiano’s and I’m always reminded why — Fly me to the spoon and dish up.

Maggiano’s South Coast Plaza yesterday and take away Eggplant Parmesan today.

Taco Dawg Critics Dinner 2010: The OC’s Original Mobile Food Restaurant.

October 28th, 2010 No comments

Taco Dawg will be serving up new menu items starting this Halloween in celebration of their one-year anniversary.  Taco Dawg is a gourmet food truck (a popular food option these days) that puts a spin on two classics — Tacos and Hot Dogs, hence the name.  We recently tried a few at Taco Dawg’s Critics Dinner 2010.  Thank you Taco Dawg!  We were happily impressed with the new and featured menu items.

All may try the pictured items for the first time on October 31st, somewhere in Irvine by day, then at the Spooktacular in Orange that evening.  Note: Since it is a truck, it’s best to follow Taco Dawg on Twitter to obtain their exact location.  To learn the names of the Tasting Menu items soon to debut, hover over each photo.  Starting from the top is the Taco Papa and above is The Samurai, my favorite — We all loved its Miso Caramelized Glaze.

Above is The Hipster, Taco Dawg’s first Vegetarian Taco, made with Portobello Mushrooms, Chipotle Sauce, Grilled Onions, Jack Cheese and Romaine Lettuce.

We appreciated the Beer and Wine and met cool new friends, including Taco Dawg.

OMGosh, we ate so much at this Critics Dinner.  It was on to the Hot Dogs, then back to the Tacos.  We tried The Reuben Dawg (above) and The Dirty Dawg  (below) that’s piled with Homemade Chili, Nacho Cheese, Crumbled Potato Chips and Onions — Both are made with an all Beef Hot Dog.

Continuing on, we tried The Big City Dawg (below).

And The Cuban (below), thought to possibly be the best item of the night, at least at our table — It’s a Taco variation of a Cuban Sandwich that includes a combination of Ham, Pickles, Swiss Cheese and traditional flavors.  The Cuban is the featured item of the month.  Each month, Taco Dawg will feature a special item that’s not on the menu.

It all ended with a miniature version of their Apple Taco — It was good, but thank God it was small, since we already ate so much.  Barely had enough room.

To learn more about Taco Dawg and the pictured Tacos and Dawgs, visit whaddupdawg.com and here — Their site will be relaunched next month, so check back for that.  Follow Taco Dawg on Twitter to learn their exact whereabouts.

Benihana: Still Cooking Up Great Food & Fun After All These Years.

September 14th, 2010 2 comments

Happily I’ve never had a bad meal at Benihana — The restaurant chain opened more than 40 years ago.  I’ve dined at several locations across the states and haven’t left any without a smile on my face.  The food is always fresh, cooked perfectly and it’s fun to watch it happen.  And if you join The Chef’s Table, you’ll receive a complimentary meal during the month of your birthday, a $30 value.  It’s a great deal.  If you have a birthday coming up, join now.

This visit we ordered the Land ‘N Sea, which includes Benihana’s Onion Soup and Salad, a Hibachi Shrimp appetizer, Zucchini and Onions, steamed or fried Rice, Ice Cream and Green Tea, as like most meals.  The Land ‘N Sea also consists of Filet Mignon and Sea Scallops that are grilled with Lemon and Butter.  Everything tasted fantastic and the cooking show was entertaining as usual, especially when our chef missed catching an Egg that fell and cracked on the floor — It happens.  Unfortunately that photo turned out blurry.

These photos were taken at Benihana’s Newport Beach restaurant.  We recommend Chef Roberto, who is pretty darn funny and talented.  The service seems extra good at this location.  Management was walking around making sure everyone was happy and satisfied.

Chef Roberto made a heart out of the Fried Rice and a volcano out of the Onions.

Our Filet Mignon and Sea Scallops were perfectly cooked, as usual.

Keep it coming — We’re always stuffed on the way out and have leftovers for the next day.

Although we’ve enjoyed countless meals at Benihana, this is Nibbles of Tidbits’ first report.

We celebrated a couple birthdays at our table, thus appreciated the complimentary photo, beautifully carved Pineapple and song.  Chef’s Table birthday meals are honored without a hitch — Just bring in the printed voucher with an ID and you may redeem it anytime during the month of your birthday.  It’s a terrific deal.

The Lazy Dog Cafe Opened At The Market Place In Irvine.

March 8th, 2010 1 comment

Togarashi Edamame Beans

Welcome to Irvine — The Lazy Dog Cafe.  We’re lucky to have you.  The Togarashi Edamame Beans (above) lead this post, because we think they’re the best Edamame in Orange County.  Wash your hands good before eating ’em, so you can lick your fingers.  Their smoky flavor is amazing.  My friend couldn’t stop talking about them, thus they made one of the biggest impressions.

Trio of Hummus

The Lazy Dog Cafe at The Market Place in Irvine just opened a few days ago.  Nibbles of Tidbits happily attended a pre-opening sneak peek and we now report about a small portion of what’s on their menu.  To sum it all up, we were impressed with everything — The service, decor, friendliness, food and prices.  Here’s what we had… Trio of Hummus Dips which includes a Walnut Pesto, Sundried Tomato and Traditional Hummus served with Flatbread, Cucumbers and Tomatoes.

Spinach & Sundried Tomato Cheese Dip

Spinach & Sundried Tomato Cheese Dip with Jack, Parmesan and Swiss Cheeses blended with fresh Baby Spinach, Garlic and Sundried Tomatoes.

Kitchen Area -- Food Pick Up

Our sneak peek included a tour of the bustling kitchen and dinner with fellow Orange County Food Bloggers.  It was super fun to meet Scott from Foodie in Disguise and see Christian again from OC Mex Food.  And Griffin Eats OC posts another interesting report on The Lazy Dog Cafe.

Cast Iron Idaho Trout

Continuing with the food… We enjoyed the Cast Iron Idaho Trout that’s baked in a cast iron skillet with Sea Salt Roasted Vegetables, Baby Potatoes and topped with a Citrus Walnut Brown Butter Sauce.

Bacon Wrapped Coulotte Steak

Bacon Wrapped Coulotte Steak (best part of the Sirloin) served over Confetti Veggies and Mashed Potatoes with Burgundy Wine Sauce.

Mushroom & Onion Flat Iron Steak

Mushroom & Onion Flat Iron Steak topped with sauteed Madeira Mushrooms and Onions, served with Mashed Potatoes and Confetti Veggies.

Beer Battered Fish N' Chips

Beer Battered Fish N’ Chips made with Coldwater Cod and served with a Horseradish Tartar Sauce, Asian Slaw and French Fries.

Baja California Burger with Sweet Corn Salad

Baja California Burger with Guacamole, Ortega Chilis, Jack Cheese and a Jalapeno & Lime Aioli with a side of Sweet Corn Salad.

The Bar

The Bar Top is spectacular — I could stare at it all day, but probably wouldn’t get much accomplished.  Unfortunately I don’t remember the cool specifics about it, but ‘it ain’t no laminate’ on top.  We’ll ask our resident Interior Designer, Guest Blogger Bonnie to add a footnote about it.

Lazy Dog Bar Top PhotoIceberg WedgeChicken Tortilla SoupCobbler

Also pictured above is the Iceberg Wedge Salad, Chicken Tortilla Soup and a Cobbler — By the time the desserts came along, I was stuffed and had to get a move on, thus don’t have a clear report on the best part of the meal for some.  I sure wish I could take a bite now.

Lazy Dog Cafe Dessert

Cinnamon and Sugar Pizza

Baked Brownie Pie

The view below is from the entrance looking into the bar.  It’s a big, cozy place with a menu to satisfy all tastes, even a dogs.

Entrance Looking Into Bar

Dogs are welcome on the patio and even get their own menu upon request.  Not yet mentioned is The Lazy Dog Cafe’s Drink Menu — Who has time, fresh Mojitos, Margaritas, Lemonades and more, oh my.  I’ll go to The Lazy Dog Cafe anytime!

Alex’s Lemonade Stand: Fundraiser Dinner At 50 Forks Restaurant.

February 6th, 2010 No comments

50 Forks Short Ribs

It’s been reported that one can truly judge a Chef by his/her Short Ribs.  If that’s true, let it be known that 50 Forks Restaurant at The Art Institute of California (Orange County) delivered on the above.  We thoroughly enjoyed all this terrific food at a fundraiser for Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation — 100% of the proceeds from this dinner go towards cancer research.  Their motto is… When life hands you lemons, eat! 

Amuse Bouche at 50 Forks

Our 10-course meal started with the above Amuse Bouche, Pumpkin Porridge served with Crispy Rice.  The fundraiser was reported to be a 6-course meal, but we happily received much more — Hover over each photo to learn what’s on the menu.  To raise additional funds, all is being served again at 50 Forks tonight.  For cost information, times and telephone number, click here.  There still might be room.

Parpadelle Pasta with Mushrooms and Beans

Swiss Chard Tart with Goat Cheese

Braised Capon with Citrus, Fennel and Gaeta Olives

Potato and Tomato Gratin

Blood Orange, Date and Arugula Salad

Pot De Creme with Churros

Mignardises

We were seated and served family style, which can be fun or awkward, but luckily we ended up sharing our meal with some cool peeps who love food too.  The Art Institute staff and students were friendly and focused.  Thank you 50 Forks — We’ll be back for lunch.  And God bless Alex’s Lemonade Stand.

Melange of Winter Vegetables (blurry, thus not enlargable)50 Forks Kitchen Students and Staff50 Forks RestaurantAlex's Menu

On certain days, 50 Forks Restaurant is open for lunch.  It’s a great place to get a gourmet meal for a good price.  And for a limited time, they will soon be open for dinner — The specifics are here.

* Click on the above MENU to enlarge it for better viewing.

Trick Or Eat Zombie Dinner Show At The Cellar in Fullerton.

October 31st, 2009 No comments

The Cellar

We dared to descend the darkened stairway (freight elevator) into the depths of The Cellar Restaurant to celebrate their 3rd Annual Trick or Eat Halloween Dinner Party.  They report that the lore of haunted restaurants is talked about, but nowhere is it truer than in The Cellar.  The space in which The Cellar inhabits was home to untold mysteries and the haunting of The Cellar is a closely guarded secret that’s only revealed once a year.

Course One:  Radioactive abductor muscles in a pool of gamma charged ooze, black goop, and unearthed fungus AKA Pan Seared Sea Scallops with a Zesty Basil Sauce, Balsamic Reduction and Enoki Mushrooms.

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Course Two:  Dissected alien seed pods, toxic forest leaves in slimy secretions, with rotten and moldy milk AKA Mission Fig Salad with Baby Oak Leaf Lettuce, Maple Vinaigrette and Aged Gorgonzola.

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Main Course:  Fire charred boat deck aged fishing chum, steamed maggots, and finished with a gangrene and puss (yuck) sauce AKA Grilled Mahi Mahi with Savory Rice, finished with an Herbed Butter Sauce.

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Or decayed cow muscles with slaughterhouse drippings and fungal growths AKA Grilled Flavorful Rib Eye Steak, with a Merlot and Mushroom Reduction.

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Dessert:  Graveyard mud soufflé with dried blood and bloody sacks AKA Chocolate Soufflé with Melted Dark Chocolate and Fresh Raspberries.

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We thought the $49 price for all was pretty great and the show was entertaining.  The Scallops were just okay, a little rubbery, but the Mahi Mahi and Rib Eye Steak were definitely The Cellar’s usual caliber.  It was so dark that we didn’t know the sauce on the Mahi was bright green, until viewing the photos — Sorry a couple are out of focus.  Overall, it’s a good deal and a fun experience.  It’s sold out for tonight, but worth booking next year.  Luckily we survived the zombies.  Happy Halloween!

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Sullivan’s Steakhouse Dinner In Palm Desert.

April 20th, 2009 1 comment

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We didn’t have Steak at Sullivan’s Steakhouse in Palm Desert, so we’ll definitely need to go back for that.  Until then, we liked what we had this visit and the service was terrific too.  It’s a busy place and appears to be where everyone is in Palm Desert.  Good thing we made reservations, because it was packed.

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We enjoyed a 1/2 lb. of King Crab LegsAsparagus with Hollandaise SauceRoasted Chicken Vesuvio Style with Garlic Herb Potatoes, and Blue Cheese Meatloaf with Horseradish Mashed Potatoes, Sauteed Mushrooms, Onions and Bordelaise Sauce.

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The Banana Bread Pudding was one of the BEST Desserts I’ve had.  It was warm inside and crispy around the outside.  I’ll get it every time and want to put a spoon into the photo.  Sullivan’s has almost 20 restaurants in many states across America (Illinois, North Carolina, Arizona, Texas, Delaware, etc.) — I’m glad there’s at least one in California.  It makes me want to go back to Palm Desert.

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I’ve learned that Sullivan’s Steakhouse will be opening several new restaurants in the future — That’s great news.

You Need To Find Kimera Restaurant • Lounge.

April 9th, 2009 No comments

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Kimera Restaurant  Lounge has little signage on the outside and its Complementary Valet Parking may be a little tricky to locate for some, but you’ll find it — And it’s truly worth finding.  The food is excellent.  We enjoyed all aspects of our meals, the Meats, Sauces and Sides.  All was top notch.

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This evening we had the Chef’s Special which included Shrimp in a Beurre Blanc Sauce and Steak — Unfortunately I don’t have the eloquent description of the Steak and Sauce as it was presented by the Server, but all was cooked perfectly.  And we had the Boneless Pork Rib Rack Chop with Cremini Mushrooms, Soft Polenta and White Truffle Essence.  It was fantastic too, especially the Mushroom Sauce. 

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Kimera is a pretty stylish place — The lounge appears to bring in a good crowd, but don’t forget the dining room.  It’s got a lot to offer too.  In fact, they’re currently offering a few incentives to enjoy the restaurant.  One is 50% Off Food on Monday Nights, a terrific value for high quality food.  I’m not sure how long that enticement will continue — Forever would be good.

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And for Dessert we tried the “Birthday Cake” a la Mode with Banana, Strawberries, Chocolate Sauce and Candied Walnuts, YUM.  And the Flour-less Chocolate Torte.  I learned that Kimera’s operators and staff truly want you to have a great experience.  You need to get over there and treat yourself — I’ll be going back soon.

Kimera Restaurant  Lounge: http://www.bistango.com/kimera.shtml#

Cooking Demonstration at Bloomingdales: http://www.ineedtext.com/FoodBlog/?p=2888

Baked Eggs In Ham Cups, Aren’t They Cool?!

April 8th, 2009 4 comments

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One of the magazines I currently subscribe to is Orange Coast and in this month’s issue is this amazing recipe.  It’s Baked Eggs in Ham Cups with Mushrooms and Shallots by Chef Jamie Gwen.  I fell in love with the photo, and the recipe is fairly easy so I had to make it. 

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The taste and homemade presentation happily lived up to my initial reaction to the magazine photo (below left).  This recipe is so delicious and impressive looking.  A yummy sautéed Mushroom mixture is layered over the Ham and under the Egg, as you can see before it’s baked (below middle). 

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The photo and recipe in Orange Coast Magazine (April 2009) are found within a Special Advertising Section by South Coast Plaza, 13-15. 

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These Baked Eggs in Ham Cups are definitely worth making, especially for company.  They’ll definitely be a part of my Brunch repertoire in the future — They’re too FAB!

Chef Jamie Gwen INFO: http://www.chefjamie.com/

Orange Coast Magazine: http://www.orangecoastmagazine.com/

Note:  Leave comment HERE if larger recipe print is needed.

Wild Mushroom Ravioli At Bloomingdales To KICK OFF Orange County Restaurant Week.

February 22nd, 2009 No comments

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The First Annual Orange County Restaurant Week officially starts today and continues through February 28th — More details about it are linked below.  As previously reported on Nibbles of Tidbits, participating Chefs are giving cooking demonstrations at Bloomingdale’s Home Store at South Coast Plaza.

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Here Chef Paul French of The Californian at The Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach makes their Wild Mushroom Ravioli with sauteed Jewel Box Mushrooms, Farmer’s Market Vegetables and Brown Truffle Butter Sauce.  WOW, it’s the best we’ve sampled (thus far) during these demonstrations.  And it’s fortunately one of the dishes being offered during OC Restaurant Week.

Related Links:

http://www.ineedtext.com/FoodBlog/?p=2623

http://www.ineedtext.com/FoodBlog/?p=2489

http://www.orangecountyrestaurantweek.com/

http://huntingtonbeach.hyatt.com/hyatt/hotels/entertainment/index.jsp

New Years Eve Food At The Golden Truffle.

January 1st, 2009 No comments

The service at The Golden Truffle Restaurant was superb.  We enjoyed the prix fixe New Years Eve Menu.  The food offerings were progressive and broad, which I like.  And the $68 price for four sophisticated courses wasn’t bad.  We enjoyed our food and wine on the outdoor patio under the overhead heater.


Respectively pictured are just a few of our picks — The Cream of Maui Onion Soup, the Tempura Chicken and Avocado Hand Roll with Fresh Wasabi, the Pit Smoked Prime Cowboy Cut Brisket with Whipped Potatoes and Horseradish Jus, the Black Truffle Sauteed Breast of Jidori Chicken with Beaujolais and Mushrooms, the Lavender and Wild Honey Creme Brulee, and the Bitter Chocolate Pot De Creme with Crushed Berries.

The Sauce on the Jidori Chicken and the Brisket were both outstanding.  We hoped for more Black Truffle flavor on the Chicken and more Lavender in the Creme Brulee, but their preparation was perfectly executed.  Overall it was a great experience with well timed and friendly service.  I’d go back for that.  Although it’s a restaurant, The Golden Truffle’s main business is catering.  Long ago they figured they might as well set up a store front too.

Related Links:

http://www.goldentruffle.com/

http://www.jidorichicken.com/

http://www.answers.com/topic/prix-fixe

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tuber_(genus)

HAPPY NEW YEAR!