Saturday, September 27, 2008

Food porn on a Saturday Morning...

Care for some egg with your truffles? That is a picture of a dream breakfast if you're a truffle junkie like moi.

Tuber melanosporum has been called the "Diamond of the kitchen." I was lucky enough to run into a food purveyor at the RAM show in Baltimore that had just received a shipment of black truffles from Italy. He gave me one about the size of a golf ball, which has lasted me two weeks so far.

I'm a fan of black and white truffles, but the whites are horribly expensive and they don't keep nearly as well. On the flip side, there is nothing like the smell and taste of fresh white truffles. It's amazing how the smell permeates anything and everything. If you put an unwrapped white truffle in your refrigerator everything that is not hermetically sealed or in a bottle will take on and absorb the flavor, including milk, iced cream, butter, whatever.

On the rare occasion that I get the white truffles I store them in an airtight container filled with risotto and organic eggs. The scent permeates through the eggshell and flavors the raw egg exquisitely. It's a wonder of nature.

If you get a chance, give it a taste.

Until next time....

Busboys and Poets new location, 1025 5th St. N.W.

The gang behind several concepts in DC/VA has opened a new location. Andy Shallal, mastermind, is at it again

Hicham, the director of operations, smiling for a change.
Spiraling down from the mezzanine level to the main level.
The view from the kitchen towards the front door.
. Another view of the interior.

If you get a chance, stop by. There is plenty of parking available. There is a free-trade market on premise with nifty arts/crafts type things.

As with the other Busboys and Poets, there is a private dining/theater area and lots of politically themed art. Try the Fallafel!

Thanks for taking the time to read and comment.

Until next time....

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Grace's Mandarin at the National Harbor

If you haven't been to the Harbor yet, take an afternoon and check it out. There is going to be a ton of retail and good eats. I'm working on a restaurant under construction right now named Grace's Mandarin. They have two other restaurants in PG county.
Here's a view of the building from the street.
And another...
This is the view from the bar. Notice the river in the background...

This is Eddie Ng, or Nice Guy Eddie as I like to call him. He is Grace's son and is in charge of the project. The food in their other restaurants is excellent and I don't expect anything less here. They're going to have a VIP area so those of you ready to spring for the Crystal will feel right at home. See you next time...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

No food porn today, just Redwood at night..

Just a few pictures from a dinner at Redwood in Bethesda last night. As usual, the food was excellent.
The place is very aesthetically pleasing in the PM. This place was very busy for a Monday evening. Notice the care taken with the lighting and shadows.
Most of the restaurant's front windows open up onto the walkway of Bethesda Lane.

They do a brisk brunch business out on the patio, but it was closed last night.

Very nice place to hang out for some drinks/food. If you haven't checked it out, give it a shot.

Until next time...

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Chef Spike at the RAM Show, and some food porn

This week we had the Restaurant Association of Maryland's show at the Baltimore Convention Center. The food was sparse, and so were the vendors. Not a great showing this year, but we did have some fun.
Spike from GoodStuff Eatery was mugging for the cameras and handing out Toasted Marshmallow THOSE were tasty. If you haven't had an opportunity to check out his restaurant follow the link above. It's worth the trip.

Chef Spke from Good Stuff.

A little Sunday morning food porn courtesy of Vie De France Bakery in Potomac (and my kitchen).This is their Challah bread with raisins, cinnamon, and sugar. You have to order it the day before you want it. Apparently it is cooked at a different temperature than the rest of the stuff they make, so it's the last thing in the oven. You can order for 8:30am at the location I go to.
On the looks almost as good as it tastes.

Until next time, thanks for reading.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Home cookin'...again.

Since I haven't eaten out (much) in the last couple of weeks, I thought I'd put some pix up that I took of some home cookin' recently.
If you're interested in how they're done, feel free to drop me a comment.

So how does Costco get such good crab legs? Sliced garlic, sherry, and foil.

This is what the shoulder looks like after three hours @ 225 in my smoker.

And this is after coming out of the dutch oven, where it's been sitting for another six hours at 225. Below is a little food porn for the fotogs who happen to peruse my blog.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Sorry I haven't blogged in a while...

I've been laid up and will get back to eating out as soon as I'm up to it!
Thanks for checking.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Some home cooking, with recipes included!

A long weekend is just another excuse to spend some quality time in the kitchen. I had some time to myself Sunday and had Alison and Andrew coming over with their kids for dinner. If you're a frequent reader you'll remember that I broke in their new kitchen for them a while back.
So while they were out with my family hiking a trail in Potomac I got my mise' on.
I decided to start out with a carrot cake. It's time consuming, but it's worth it. The recipe is from a "Recipe a Day" calender that my former boss got me for Christmas.

Start out with some comfy clothes and a good cd. I was listening to The Rolling Stones Greatest Hits cd for this adventure.

Get some nice organic carrots. Don't forget to save a little zest for the garnish.
The Recipe. Give it a shot.While the sugar is blending with the oil I start taking care of the carrots. Then I mix in all of the dry ingredients (sifted together four times to let them oxygenate) and let them get to know each other.
The finished product. Icing cakes isn't my strongest skill and I usually let Cheryl do it, but this time I gave it the old college try.

Next up was the potato dish. I felt like trying something new.

I added some goat cheese, because it seemed like a good idea.
The finished product. Very oniony. The last recipe I'm going to share was some steamed cauliflower with a bastardized Mornay sauce. I was using an ingredient that was given to me by an old friend and business colleague, Mike Zendell, Black Truffle Flour.I love this stuff. Mike, if you're reading this, Christmas is coming again! I think you know what I want this year.

Anyhow, here's recipe.
2 Tbsp Butter
1 Tbsp Black Truffle Flour
1 Tbsp all purpose flour
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup half & half
1/4 cup small cube cheddar
dash of white pepper
Make a roux with the flour and butter, being careful to stir almost constantly. Don't let it burn. That takes about 5 minutes. Pour in the liquid, let that come to a slight boil and it will thicken up nicely. Add the cheddar a few cubes at a time, stirring until it's smooth. Then add the white pepper. Very tasty.

Last but not least, the main course. Barbecue Chicken Thighs. (Mike Palmer, this pic is for you!) I dry-rubbed these, seared them, then put them in a foil-lined and covered pan and left them on the grill for 45 minutes or so. I then took them out just before serving and crisped them up a little with direct heat from grill. The chicken was just about falling off the bone.

Should you have any questions, comments, or rude remarks about anything you've read here please feel free. I always like to hear from you.

Until next time....keep reading.