HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!!!!!
I hope you are enjoying your day. It is super warm and windy here, and I kind of feel like Mary Poppins will fly in with her umbrella.
Nick and I celebrated V-Day this past weekend because he is in NY today.
Nick spent way too much money, but everything was perfect and reminded me why I love him. He might be clueless about a lot of things, but he also knows me really well
He got me my favorite Lilies that smell amazing!
The stinky ones are just starting to come out!
He also got me the Dance Central game for the Kinect!
Homemade pb cups with 3 different choices – pb, coconut almond butter, pb and jam. I made them for Nick to go with his Limited addition Dogfish brews.
Inside the pb and jam cup. You can see that the ratio is off for chocolate to filling. The pb gets a little over powered by the chocolate making them super rich but still delicious!
After some afternoon chocolate and beer we headed out to dinner at our favorite place – B Bistro!
Nick always wants to try the snails when we are there, but I usually want to pass. Well, tonight was the night for snails! Oh I mean escargot…
Served on bib lettuce with wild mushrooms and a garlic brown butter sauce. All I have to say is you can make anything delicious with brown butter sauce. I really liked how they got the mushrooms and snails crispy in the butter. Nick really liked them too!
For our main dishes Nick went with his old stand by
Crispy duck. We don’t know how they get the duck so fall of the bone delicious but they cook the beans like baked beans but with duck fat instead of pork. It is really rich, but those beans are seriously delicious.
I went with something new on their menu.
Dorade (Rugge, please don’t tell me this is super over fished – I can’t find anything on the web saying their stocks are in trouble). It is about the size of a black sea bass and is also known as a sea bream. It was good, but kind of large and could have used some sort of lemon sauce on top for a little flavor pop other than the garlic pesto line. It also came with swiss chard cooked with pine nuts and golden raisins (yum!)
This is a chocolate molten cake with salted caramel and homemade ginger ice cream. I am usually all about the chocolate, but this ice cream was so delicious! I am going to have to try some of their other flavors now!
After dinner Nick and I went out for an after dinner drink and got treated to Godiva martinis by the bar. They were not overly sweet and tasted like Bailey’s, but don’t tell the Godiva rep that! Unfortunately we came out to the car to a seriously deflated tire that I did not realize until we were on the road. We were less than a mile from home so I just took it slow and made it to our driveway safely. Thank goodness AAA came first thing in the AM and that my spare is a full tire!
I was freaking out when the tire issue happened, but at least Nick was there and I wasn’t driving to work through the ghetto. Always have to put things in perspective.
I am going to get my orthotics today and I hope they help with my foot and knee! Bummed I won’t be spending the evening with N, but at least we had a memorable weekend and I can spend my V-day with my other love.
Today was my first experience at a cooking demonstration.
I received an e-mail from Living Social for a deal to The Dogwood Restaurant, and when I saw it a local and sustainable restaurant, I knew I had to check it out.
The theme today was San Francisco and Berkley and we were presented with menus and mimosas upon entrance.
The chef is also the owner and he began by explaining their aim for sustainable, seasonal and local foods in their restaurant.
I really liked the kale behind him, but it made for weird lighting.
Funny enough the first course was California Persimmons, pickled fennel, baby greens and California Olive Oil.
These persimmons did not taste like the ones I had previously and I finally found out why! I was not letting them ripen enough (I had waited a week). Apparently it is hard to get them here ripe on the vine. I guess I have to wait until I get to Cali to actually enjoy them in their full splendor. I really liked the pickled fennel that was lightly soaked in Chardonnay vinegar, sugar, salt and a bit of the fennel greens.
We also had a wine pairing with every course and the Four Vines “Naked” Chardonnay was my least favorite of the day.
The next course was a caramelized onion tart with blue cheese and fresh thyme.
I am not good at pastry so it was very interesting to see the many steps that go into combining basically flour and a lot of butter. You do not want your butter to get warm!
This was good and very crispy due to the fact that they use a pizza stone to make their tarts instead of a tart pan. I would have liked a bit more of a bold punch from the onions, but they cheese was very good and I was happy to see the greens show up.
The wine pair with this was a Bonny Doon Ca’del Solo Estate Vineyard Albarino
This was much better than the first white, but I am just a much bigger fan of reds.
This basic fish stew was much more than that. It had sherry, red pepper flakes, clams, mussels, scallops from the coast of New Jersey, white fish and shrimp.
This was paired with the Flowers Pinot Noir, which was really delicious.
Last but not least was a Ghiardelli Bittersweet Pot de Crème
They made this look so easy! Their secret it to add a little bit of Brandy for flavoring. I couldn’t even taste it.
I was so full by this point, I could only eat half. I didn’t want to walk away feeling sick after having enjoyed delicious food.
Overall I think the food was good, but the demo could use a little polishing. I had to ask about the wine pairings and they didn’t have enough seats set up for people – you were supposed to RSVP. The servers were very attentive and a great mix of people. I sat with a nice group and they gave me some restaurant suggestions for around the area.
Time to go make some turkey meatballs for dinner…I wish I had the other half of my pot de crème for dessert!
Nick and I enjoyed a lovely evening outside on Friday night in Federal Hill.
I am always game for sangria and tapas so when I heard about Centro I had to check it out.
The menu is extensive and we took our time making or plan of attack over a glass of sangria.
Manchego 12 Month (D.O) || semi-hard sheep’s milk cheese-peppery, zesty, full of robust flavor
Cabrales (D.O.P) || blue cheese from the Asturias region-made with cow, goat and sheep’s milk, semi-hard, crumbly texture, aged 2-6 months in limestone caves, unpasteurized
Murcia al Vino (“The Drunken Goat”) || semi-soft goat cheese, sweet, buttery, smooth, wine cured
Next we split a lovely salad
I loved these almonds!
Up next… mushroom stuffed sweet peppers and spinach and chickpeas.
Pimientos del Piquillos Rellenos $7 || sweet roasted red peppers stuffed with wild mushrooms, cava cream sauce
Nick and I both agreed this was our favorite dish, and he doesn’t even like cooked spinach or chickpeas!
Then we waited and waited for our remaining main dishes…apparently things got a little backed up in the kitchen.
The squid was not as good as we had hoped and the oxtail would have been better with less masa.
We also got a special snook fish that came with bay potatoes that tasted like pure butter. There was supposed to be saffron in them, but I could not taste it.
I also had a glass of sustainable pinot noir from Chile that was delicious.
We ended the night with a flourless chocolate almond cake that was not overpowering and very almondy. I enjoyed the light end to the evening.
Overall I love tapas and sharing flavors, but I wish they all didn’t have so much oil. I can defiantly start to weigh me down.
It was a great experience and a nice night to eat outside.
IN OTHER NEWS…if you live in Baltimore and want a dog please come see Stitch at BARCS!