Just in Time for Game Day!

IMG_5926Here’s a great idea for a healthy and delicious appetizer to take to your Superbowl Party this weekend. The recipe is for Black Bean Nachos with Kiwi Salsa and it’s a real winner! If you’re a Talley Farms Fresh Harvest CSA member, then the timing couldn’t be more perfect as you’ll be receiving fresh kiwi’s, cilantro and purple radishes in this week’s box. If not, just head to your local grocer or Farmer’s Market to pick up the ingredients. You’ll have the best appetizer around and it’s just in time for game day!

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Just wait till your friends bite into one of these heavenly nachos! A nice crispy corn chip covered with a blend of black beans and ground New Mexico chiles topped with some creamy Greek yogurt and mouth watering fresh kiwi salsa. It’s interesting, healthy and super delish! After the first bite, trust me, they’ll be coming back for more.

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One word of advice; please use home-made chips or purchase some from your local Mexican restaurant or market. The right chip makes all the difference when it comes to nachos. If you absolutely have to resort to store bought chips, I would suggest “Taco Works” brand or something from a specialty store such as Trader Joe’s.  But even those won’t compare to restaurant chips and believe me, it’s worth the effort. Most Mexican take-out restaurants and markets sell their own fresh-made chips that are way better than what you’ll find at a grocery store. 

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BLACK BEAN NACHOS WITH KIWI SALSA

Adapted from Vegetarian Times

Ingredients

  • ½ cup chopped white onion, plus ⅓ cup minced white onion, divided
  • 1 Tbs. lime juice
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 3 medium kiwi, peeled and diced
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 1 Tbs. finely chopped jalapeño chile
  • 3 dried New Mexico chiles, seeded and cut into small pieces
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 28-oz. can black beans, drained, liquid reserved
  • 1 bag tortilla chips, preferably home-made or restaurant purchased
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt

Directions

  1. Toss together chopped onion, lime juice, and salt in bowl. Let stand 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in kiwi, cilantro, and jalapeño.
  2. Grind dried chiles to fine particles (like sugar) in spice mill or coffee grinder; set aside.
  3. Heat oil in nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add minced onion, cover, and cook 5 minutes, or until softened, stirring occasionally. Add beans, ½ cup reserved bean liquid, and 2½ tsp. ground chiles. Mash beans, leaving some whole for texture. Cook 5 minutes, or until mixture is thickened, but moist, stirring often.
  4. Place taco chips in a single layer on a platter. Put a dollop of bean mixture on each taco chip. Top each with a dollop of yogurt and a 1/2 tsp salsa; dust with ground chiles. Serve with remaining salsa.

Note

  • Taste the jalapeño pepper to check the heat level as they vary quite a bit. Add accordingly based on how much heat you want in your salsa.
  • When adding the ground chiles to the black beans, taste it as you add them as well, checking for the level of heat that suits you. Serve a small bowl of the extra ground chiles and allow your guests to sprinkle on more to match their personal preference.
  • Serve with thin sliced radishes as a nice accompaniment.

(Printable recipe can be found in my recipe index under Appetizers)

 

A New Contender for Great Food in Paso Robles!

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There’s a new chef making some great food in Paso Robles and it’s at the Black Stallion Restaurant in the “Food for Less” center on Creston Road. Chef Mark is appealing to a broad crowd with dynamite burgers and truffle fries on one side and entrees like nicely seared scallops & red quinoa with a delicious lemon sauce on the other. We had a great experience, were well tended to and were very impressed with the food. They have a new menu with enough enticing items to draw me back over and over again. Yes, Chef Mark has a restaurant that is a new contender for great food in Paso Robles!

It is an unsuspecting location that gives an appearance much more casual than the food that is created in the kitchen deserves. I am guessing it may evolve with time, but for now I’m happy just to enjoy their excellent food as is. 

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They serve a nice selection of beer & wine and I found the overall prices of both food and drinks to be reasonable especially for the quality they are serving. We ordered a bottle of Quatro Dias Red Wine from Paso Robles for only $30 and it was quite good. 

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Chef Mark was kind enough to offer us an amuse bouche of Scallop Ceviche marinated in a hibiscus tea served with tortilla chips. It was adorned with red chile peppers, fresh herbs and sprouts and was seriously delish! 

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The Parsnip, Fennel, Apple & Cream Soup was mellow and creamy garnished with fresh chives that served well to perk up the flavors. Everything was well balanced making it a delightful mixture.

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I often like to try a restaurants’ Caesar Salad as a pulse of how I feel they accomplish a somewhat simple but often poorly-done dish. I was pleasingly surprised to see their original plating, adorned with a parmesan tuile and a nicely seasoned dressing made with my favorite style of anchovy – Spanish white anchovies!

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We decided to share an entree so I would feel less guilty ordering a plate of their Truffle Fries served with garlic, Pecorino, parsley and truffle powder. Yum!! So we ordered their special of Seared Scallops & Red Quinoa with a Lemon Buerre Blanc.  The scallops were seared nicely and married very well with the texture and taste of the quinoa. They served it with perfectly prepared tender-crisp baby asparagus on a delicious sauce. Well done, chef!

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Our friends’ selected the 1/2 Mary’s Roasted Chicken with yukon gold truffle mashed potatoes, kale & chard and a Black Stallion Burger. The burger was made of grass fed beef and cooked medium rare as requested – juicy and delicious. It was accompanied by tomato, house made pickles, arugula, aged white cheddar and bacon. They were ooohing and aaahing throughout the meal, so I knew before asking that all was good!

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Such a great meal dictated our need to indulge in a bite of sweets for a perfect finale. First was their Lemon Curd Cheesecake in a Jar. So adorable and quite scrumptious. It was layered over a slice of lemon and topped with a light crumb topping with a sprinkle of lavender. A perfect dessert! The second choice was a Deconstructed Carrot Cake. It’s one of those items where I feel that being different some times goes a little too far. It didn’t appeal to me other than my admiration for the chef in an attempt at creativity. 

All in all, I was duly impressed and can’t wait to go back and try some of their other great options. They’re going on my top 5 list for Paso and that’s impressive!

Stiff Egg Whites make the Fluffiest Frittata!

IMG_5832Check out this cool way to ensure the best results for a fluffy delicious frittata that is cooked through perfectly! The trick is to separate your eggs, beat the egg whites to stiff peaks and then whisk in a little less egg yolk. You cook it on the stove to set the outer edges and then finish it in the oven at a low temp of 350° to finish the process and lightly brown the top.

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The results; a perfectly cooked frittata. The key; stiff egg whites make the fluffiest frittata!

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My fresh leeks from Talley Farms were the main ingredient for my frittata. They were paired with grape tomatoes and goat cheese to complete the combination for a nicely balanced entree. 

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I served the frittata with Pecan, Cranberry & Orange Muffins that I made for my AARP Staying SharpHouse Party“. They are great brain food and very healthy as they contain cranberries, filled with high-quality antioxidants that help you maintain healthy cognitive functioning. They also included fresh orange zest and juice from my sweet and luscious Talley Farms oranges. A perfect accompaniment for my frittata!

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LEEK & GRAPE TOMATO FRITTATA

Adapted from Martha Stewart

Ingredients

  • 3 teaspoons olive oil, separated
  • 2 cups sliced leeks (white & light green parts) 
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper 
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes 
  • 6 egg whites 
  • 4 egg yolks 
  • 4 ounces crumbled goat cheese

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in 10-inch ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium. Add 2 cups sliced leeks; season with coarse salt and ground pepper. Cover; cook 5 minutes. Stir in 1 cup grape tomatoes. Cover; cook 2 minutes. Transfer to bowl.
  2. In another bowl, beat 6 egg whites with salt and pepper to stiff peaks. Whisk in 4 egg yolks.
  3. Brush skillet with 1 teaspoon olive oil. Add eggs; sprinkle with vegetables and 4 ounces crumbled goat cheese, pushing slightly under surface. Cook over medium until sides are dry, 3 minutes. Transfer to oven; bake 15 to 20 minutes.

(Printable recipe can be found in my recipe index under Breakfast)

 

Food to Fuel Your Brain!

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Next week I am hosting a party to educate people on how to “Stay Sharp.” One of the five ways to achieve this is through feeding your brain and one of the best ways to feed your brain is by eating leafy greens. A recent study showed that people who ate three servings a day of leafy greens had the brain function of someone five years younger. So I came up with a recipe for White Bean and Kale Hummus which is my newest idea for food to fuel your brain!

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I love utilizing several produce items from my Talley Farms Fresh Harvest CSA box for one meal. In this recipe alone, I used 5! They were their beautiful Tuscan kale and fresh lemons for zest & juice along with our holiday gift bottle of local Templeton Extra Virgin Olive Oil. I served the hummus with Talley’s incredible purple carrots and fresh crisp celery. Were you counting…that was 5 items!

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As far as I’m concerned, you should always have a bowl of some kind of hummus in the fridge so that you can use it to nibble on any extra vegetables you have for a quick and healthy snack. It can also be used as a wonderful sandwich spread or topping for numerous items. The combinations for making hummus are endless and I always have a can of chickpeas or white beans in my pantry to use at a moments notice. Try it out yourself – it’s quick & easy and utterly delicious!!

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WHITE BEAN AND KALE HUMMUS

Ingredients

  • Several kale leaves, inner stems removed cut into large pieces (I used 5 medium sized leaves)
  • One 15 oz can white beans (cannellini), drained reserving a little liquid
  • zest and juice of one lemon
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Bring a small saucepan of water to boil and add kale. Simmer for 2-3 minutes until tender and remove with a slotted spoon to the bowl of your food processor.
  2. Add the lemon zest and juice, tahini, garlic, olive oil and cumin and pulse until mixed, scraping the side of the bowl as needed. Add the white beans with the remaining bit of liquid and pulse until mixed thoroughly. Add salt and pepper and mix in. Taste and add more seasoning as needed.
  3. Hummus will last in an airtight container in your refrigerator for a week. Leaving a thin layer of olive oil on the top will help preserve it and is a great addition when serving it! You can keep half of it in the fridge and freeze the rest for up to a month in a freezer safe container.

Note

  • Make sure that you season your hummus enough by tasting and adding salt and pepper as needed. Sometimes a little extra lemon juice may make the difference. 

(Printable recipe can be found in my recipe index under Appetizers)

Bring out the Best in your Golden Beets!

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Golden Beets are sweeter and less messy than their more commonly found magenta counterparts. Beet lovers often enjoy them roasted, sliced and eaten on their own. There are others that are less beet friendly who enjoy them as an accompaniment in salads or side dishes. Well, no matter what kind of beet eater you are, this recipe will bring out the best in your golden beets and you will love it!

I recently bought a new cookbook written by two of my favorite blog authors, Sara Kate Gillingham & Faith Durand of thekitchn.com. This is the first recipe I have adapted out of their new book, although I have made numerous items from their blog. The recipe is for Beet Salad with Horseradish Creme Fraiche and Pistachios. It is simple and plates very beautifully whether you serve it on a platter or on individual plates. And either way, it is absolutely delicious!

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It utilizes my favorite way of preparing beets – by roasting them. I find it is not only the easiest preparation, but also brings out the best flavor. You can also roast and peel them, store them in an airtight container in the fridge and use them in portions as you need over the span of a week. In this recipe you can prep your beets, greens and horseradish sauce ahead and just assemble before serving, making it a perfect dish for company!

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BEET SALAD WITH HORSERADISH CREAM AND PISTACHIOS

Ingredients

  • 3 medium golden beets
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • Coarse salt, to taste
  • 8 ounces chopped baby romaine lettuce
  • 1/4 cup sour cream or creme fraiche
  • 2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
  • zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup lightly toasted, finely chopped pistachios
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. Wash and trim the beets. Place them in a foil packet, drizzle with olive oil, seal the packet and roast for 45 minutes to an hour, or until knife tender. Let the beets cool and then peel them. Slice each beet into 1/8- 1/4 inch slices. They can be stored in the refrigerator at this point until ready to use (for up to 2 days). I store them whole in a airtight container in the refrigerator up to one week.
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the olive oil and lemon juice until emulsified. Add salt to taste. Toss the dressing with the beets to coat, then remove them with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  4. Place the lettuce in the bowl with the remaining dressing and toss to coat.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the sour cream or creme fraiche with the horseradish and lemon zest. (You may want to add the horseradish a teaspoon at a time, to taste for your own personal preferance – however I liked it with a kick as it offset the beets and lettuce nicely)
  6. Sprinkle the beet slices with the pistachios so that each side is coated with nuts, pressing the nuts as needed to help them stick.
  7. To serve, put a line of horseradish sauce on the platter or salad dishes. Top with the lettuce and then with a layer of beets. Season with freshly ground pepper. Serve immediately.

(Printable recipe can be found in my recipe index under Salads)

 

Orange Scented Roasted Veggies are the Best!

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I was so excited to receive two incredible and perfectly fresh fennel bulbs in my Talley Farms Fresh Harvest CSA box this week! The stalks were adorned with oodles of beautiful fronds. Since I had also received a pound of fresh brussels sprouts and a bag of navel oranges from Johnston Farms, I decided to combine them all into a wonderful dish of Orange Scented – Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Fennel!

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The orange flavor married extremely well with these veggies and roasting them all together was a perfect idea. Then I added an extra drizzle of juice, some toasted almonds and fresh fennel fronds to finish the dish. It was simple, super yummy and very healthy!

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ORANGE SCENTED – ROASTED BRUSSELS SPROUTS & FENNEL

Ingredients

  • 2 fennel bulbs, cored and sliced into 1/4 in slices
  • 1/4 cup chopped fennel fronds
  • 1 lb. brussels sprouts, cut into quarters
  • 1 orange zested and juiced, plus an additional Tablespoon juice
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450°.
  2. Combine the fennel slices and brussels sprouts in a bowl. Toss with olive oil, juice and zest of one orange and a generous amount of salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.
  3. Lay on a parchment covered baking sheet in one layer and roast for about 15 minutes. Turn the vegetables and cook for another 5-10 minutes or until edges of most vegetables are toasted and they are tender crisp.
  4. Remove to a serving dish and drizzle remaining juice over vegetables and sprinkle with toasted almonds and fennel fronds. Serve immediately. 

(Printable recipe can be found in my recipe index under Side Dishes)

 

Roasted Vegetable and Cheese Soup is soo Gouda!

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I was attending a wine tasting event and needed to make something to pair with a red table wine. Not knowing the particulars of the wine, I decided to pair it with the earthiness of roasted vegetables and a mild, nutty 2 year aged Gouda cheese. Having received a beautiful head of cauliflower and yukon gold potatoes in my recent Talley Farms Fresh Harvest CSA box, I combined them as the base for my soup. My creation was a Roasted Cauliflower & Yukon Gold Potato – Cheese Soup with Gouda Croutons.

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Cauliflower and Yukon potatoes are both very mild flavored vegetables, so I knew I would need to enhance the soup with herbs and spices. I absolutely love Mediterranean spices and I had some curry powder in my pantry that a friend brought me from Morocco which would be a perfect place to start. I paired it with coriander, fennel seed and saffron to complete my spice mixture for the soup. 

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Roasting the vegetables would bring out the sweet earthiness to pair with the red wine. I also wanted to have a nice plating so I decided to garnish the soup with a savory dill whipped cream and served it with a side of Gouda croutons that I made to look like little grilled cheese bites. The finished product looked great and tasted delish!

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ROASTED CAULIFLOWER & YUKON GOLD POTATO – CHEESE SOUP WITH GOUDA CROUTONS 

Serves 8 (20 tapas sized portions)

Ingredients

For the Soup

  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, separated
  • 4 Tablespoons olive oil, separated
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 leek, sliced lengthwise and cut into half moon slices
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 large head cauliflower, chopped into florets
  • 2 medium-large Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 tsp mild curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp ground fennel seed
  • pinch saffron threads
  • 1 quart low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1 cup light cream
  • 1/2 cup grated Gouda
  • Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper

For the Whipped Cream

  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh dill
  • Kosher salt to taste

For the Gouda croutons

  • 1 French baguette, sliced into thin slices about 1/4″ thick 
  • 1/2 cup butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup shredded Gouda 

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°.
  2. Toss the potatoes with 1 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 10 minutes. Toss the cauliflower with 1 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Add to the pan with the potatoes and continue to roast an additional 20 minutes or until vegetables are barely fork tender.
  3. In Dutch oven, melt 1 tablespoon butter and remaining tablespoon oil over medium heat. Sauté onions and leeks for a few minutes until translucent. Add the additional tablespoon butter, garlic, curry powder, coriander, fennel and saffron and stir to combine cooking for about 1 minute. Add the roasted vegetables and chicken broth and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and cover, simmering for about 20 minutes to allow the flavors to meld. Stir in the cream and simmer a few minutes more.
  4. Puree the soup in batches in a stand blender until completely pulverized. (You can alternately use a stick blender in the pot) Return the soup to a clean pot and add the cheese to melt. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. To serve the soup, top each serving with a dollop of dill whipped cream and a sprig of fresh dill with a couple Gouda croutons alongside.
  6. Dill Whipped Cream: With a hand held mixer, blend the whipped cream in a metal bowl until soft peaks form. Mix in the chopped dill and season with salt.
  7. Gouda Croutons:  Butter the slices of baguette on one side. Melt a tablespoon of butter in a large skillet. In batches, cook slices of bread in one layer. When nicely toasted, top with Gouda cheese and another slice of bread, buttered side up. Turn the sandwich and toast the other side while the cheese melts inside. Remove to a paper towel lined baking sheet. Keep warm in the oven.

Note 

  • Whipped Cream should be made at least one hour ahead so the flavors can  meld. (Can be made early in the day, keep refrigerated)
  • Croutons can be made ahead and kept at room temperature. Remove from saturated paper towels to fresh parchment lined baking sheet and cover with foil. Reheat in a 350° when ready to serve, removing foil the last few minutes to re-crispin on the outside.
  • Soup can be made ahead up until the addition of the cheese. Reheat and add the cheese to melt just before serving.

(Printable recipe can be found in my recipe index under Soups)

Paleo, Super Quick & Easy and Delish!

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I got inspired from one of my book club friends to try a new way of making Kale Chips. She brought a bowl of them to our meeting this week and they were spicy and delicious! When I asked her how she made them, much to my surprise, she said she microwaved them! Being one that seldom uses a microwave for anything other than re-heating or melting, I was intrigued.

I was fortunate enough to have received a beautiful bunch of Lacinato Kale from my Talley Farms Fresh Harvest CSA box this week. Perfect timing for me to try out this process. The results were fantastic! What I found with making kale chips in the oven was that they didn’t evenly toast, so some spots were brown and some were not crisp enough. Doing them in the microwave creates a nice even, well dehydrated, crisp chip!

The first step is to wash the kale well and dry it. I use my lettuce spinner for the task of drying and then store my kale wrapped with a paper towel in an airtight container in the refrigerator. This keeps it fresh for days, might I say…even weeks some times!

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Remove the stems from a bunch of lacinato kale. (You can also use curly kale, but it tends to crumble and flake more than lacinato) Cut the kale leaves into 2 inch pieces and lay them on a microwave safe plate in one layer.

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Spray them with oil (I used coconut oil) and then season lightly with salt or a spice mixture of your choice. I used a mixture of cumin, coriander, Aleppo red pepper flakes and kosher salt.

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Microwave them for 3 minutes and check to see that all of the leaves are crisp. If not, remove the crisp ones and microwave in 30 second increments until the rest are done. Every microwave cooks differently, so it is best to cook less and continue if needed. I found mine to be perfect at 3 1/2 minutes.

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These will store in an airtight container for about a week. However, I can’t imagine them lasting that long in my house! We finished a whole batch before I even got the container out!

“Pay It Forward” at Bavette’s!

redeye-photo-tour-bavettes-in-river-north-2012-007While visiting Chicago over the holidays, one of the items on my to-do list was to dine at a true Chicago Steakhouse. I perused many of the well known restaurants while deciding where to dine, but one thing caught my eye when I read about Bavette’s. It was their “Pay It Forward” policy regarding corkage fees. You are allowed to bring in two of your own bottles of wine for no corkage fee as long as you are willing to share a glass from each bottle with someone else in the restaurant. I found this to be a thoughtful, creative idea and I loved it! That clinched the deal for me on what restaurant to try, so we went to “Pay It Forward” at Bavette’s! Additionally I read wonderful accolades about their delicious food, of course. As that is certainly of primary concern to me.

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Upon entering the restaurant, I was delighted as the setting and ambiance was exactly what I was hoping for in a traditional steakhouse. It was perfect! Our waiter was terrific and fortunately came equipped with a nice sense of humor which helped make our experience more enjoyable.

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The menu was not overwhelming and had a few interesting surprises. Our meal began with steaming warm, crusty bread alongside soft spreadable butter and a dish of a house-made mixture of fresh seasoned salt. (It’s the little things that make a difference!)

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For starters we selected a Baked Crab Cake with blue crab (the best), with preserved lemon and remoulade, the Bacon Roasted Tomato Salad with watercress, olive oil and herb salt, and their Roasted Bone Marrow with caramelized red onion jam and parsley salad. They were all really wonderful! The tomato salad was amazing with the thick slab bacon & sweet tomatoes and the bone marrow, although a bit difficult to eat, was also fantastic. You don’t get a lot from the bone, but what you get is succulent and supremely decadent. 

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For entree’s we went beef all the way! Two Classic Ribeyes – Chicago Cut, (I ordered mine with the maitre’d butter – not counting calories over the holiday) a Traditional Fillet Mignon and Bolognese with hand cut pappardelle, parmesan and bread crumbs. Everything was delicious and my steak was one of the best I have ever had!

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For sides, we ordered Creamed Spinach with bleu cheese and caramelized onions and a Baked Sweet Potato with butter and brown sugar. The spinach was the only item that didn’t thrill me. However, the sweet potato was a piece of heaven – no holding back on the butter! Simple, but well done and absolutely scrumptious!

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No room for dessert, but who can say no to a little sweet after such a wonderful meal? Anyway, a little ice cream just melts all the food away, doesn’t it? Not sure what part the chocolate sauce plays, other then it’s luscious goodness! Oh well, there is always January for dieting…

Being a true steakhouse, the lights were dimmed so my photo’s don’t show as much detail as usual. I apologize for that, but my family decided that using a flash might not be the most appropriate thing for me to do. You’ll just have to go to Bavette’s yourself to get a better look at their amazing food!

 

The Top Foodie Spot on our Chicago Trip!

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So glad that my foodiness has rubbed off on my kids as my son, Matt found the most incredible restaurant for us to try in Chicago. It was a causal neighborhood joint, a bit out of the way, offering Euro-Asian cuisine and it rocked! I voted it the top foodie spot on our Chicago Trip.

Fat Rice offers what they regard as homestyle comfort food with Portuguese flair.  We guessed our way through the menu with help from the waitstaff. Fortunately I had spent a few moments perusing the Yelp reviews which gave me a few inside tips on the menu. Unfortunately, we were there for brunch so our choices were a little more limited. Not to worry though, everything they offer is fantastic and consequently we had a wonderful meal!

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The boys ordered their Boozy Bourbon Tea made with spiced whiskey, sweet vermouth, black tea, tea shrub and mint which was served in a small carafe. I opted for their Magnolia Blossom Oolong Tea minus the booze. Both were delish.

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We began the meal with dumplings: Boiled Pork Dumplings with sichuan garlic oil and sweet soy and Steamed Pork & Shrimp Dumplings with dill, chili, and black vinegar. We also tried their Curried Fish Balls made with mackerel & pollock and cilantro. They were all yummy and unique.

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For one of our mains, we selected the Juicy Porkchop Bun made with house bread, crab chips and chinese mustard. Wow, that was good!

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The most incredible dish we had was their namesake; Arroz Gordo (fat rice)! A little pricey but a robust portion of their version of paella and fantastic down to the very last kernel of rice! Here is a photo description of the dish:

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Ok, did I error and say that the Arroz Gordo was the best dish of the day? Well, the waitress insisted that we save room for one of their desserts; her favorite. It was the Pastel de Nata, a puff pastry filled with custard, love & secrets. I’m not sure what the secrets are and I don’t care how full you are; there should always be room for this absolutely, inexplicably wonderful sweet sensation. I adored it!

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Fat Rice is a very small restaurant and they don’t accommodate parties larger than 6. They are open for dinner Tues thru Sat from 5:30 – 10:00 and Fri & Sat brunch from 11:00 – 2:00 and Sun brunch from 11:00 – 3:00. The word is out so I would call for a reservation! You will love it!!