Its a Small World After All

And now the Disney theme song is stuck in my head. I was actually afraid of that ride as a kid.

Those moving doll things and the boat ride, the dark lighting….. Something about it was OOO so uncomfortable for me. I’m quite sure even as an adult that ride may creep me out.

However, much of that saying, “Its a small world after all” is so so true for me. Having had the most amazing childhood, in multiple countries and states, I run into people from my past lives in the strangest places, and often times in places so close to my current home.

Last week I had the chance to have dinner with three other wonderful local bloggers. Turns out, one of them, Deepta, and I share a very similar moving background. She and I even lived in Singapore at the exact same time! My heart aches for Singapore in the best way possible, for some of my first and or deepest memories are there. If I find a fellow former Singapore expat, there is sure to be a common bond 🙂

Allison, Jen, Deepta and I met at Cafe Ena. Sister restaurant to Rincon 38 and La Fresca. (See my visit to Rincon 38 here) I had the Lechon, the prosciutto wrapped pork tenderloin, with a trio pepper risotto, black garlic sauce, and a roasted artichoke-pepper relish.

O. My. Delicious. This was hands down the best pork tenderloin I have had in a long long time. It was melt in your mouth, cooked to perfection. And that black garlic sauce! If I could just have a bowl of that and call it a soup!

Now my pictures did not really show up… but that just means you should go and try Cafe Ena for yourself!

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You could not pick a better place to meet, eat, connect and discover how small of a world it really is sometimes.

Would you eat a sauce as a soup? No, just me? 🙂

 

Lately: Cabin Fever

When the thermostat says 90….. but even the dog is in layers.. time to finally break out the space heater… when after 9 inches of snow the building FINALLY plows your parking lot… in the middle of what, like the 4th polar vortex.

Which by the way, since when do we have polar vortexes?

My cabin fever is about at its max..

Life lately looks like:

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Homemade bruschetta…. chopped tomatoes, basil, garlic, olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper.

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A little homemade Indian style butter chicken over lentils. Similar recipes abound on Pinterest, I combined a few 🙂

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And Butternut Squash, Kale and Gruyere Barley Risotto from Joanne’s blog, the recipe here. I peruse her blog on the daily and leave too many comments about my carbs habits 🙂

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And Mom’s homemade gyoza…. yum yum.

Whats going on in your kitchen lately?

Cabin fever anyone?

Friends who Cook and Pour the Wine

Friends who cook are the best kind of friends.  Friends who cook and invite you over to partake are even better.

The dinner party these days makes a rare appearance. For my circle, it is mainly the restaurant that brings us all together.

I distinctly remember the dinner party making a strong impression upon my childhood. Watching my mother prepare the dishes… assisting by organizing the appetizers… often times serving up the drinks behind the bar, I mean look at that cute 8 year old tending bar! What a dinner party novelty…

Thinking to myself, when I grow up, I want to be a food designer….

Wonder where that dream went and why it was replaced with such an analytical path..

I digress..

Friends who host the dinner party, cook and pour the wine are a favorite of mine…

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These are the type that amaze, that are willing to make a single serving, minus the mushrooms; just for you!

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The type that pours the wine for everyone else.

The type that puts in the time and caters to their partner’s Bffs…

Any time you wanna cook for me, I’m there.

Especially when you are making my fav, Risotto. I’ve totally professed my love for the dish here and here.

And what dinner party is complete without a juicing demonstration?

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I may still not be the biggest beet fan, but hey, I tried it !
A big thank you for the meal and for opening up your home for a weekday dinner party 🙂

And check out www.thekbreport.com the new adventure of Friend’s girlfriend and my friend Kbail.

Adventures in Cooking for One: Redemption Risotto

You may recall my risotto disaster of prior months.  I had wanted to celebrate a year in this new city, and attempt something new. And it was a big fat failure.  However, Friend Who Makes Me Risotto, (FWMMR for future reference), driven by utter disgust of my first attempt, emailed me her recipe and directions.  Strict instructions I must say.

Hence, the theme of this post will be FWMMR’s strict instructions:

WOODEN SPOON

MEDIUM HEAT ALWAYS MEDIUM

STIR LIKE CRAZY!

(FWMMR sent this to me in all caps.)

I pledge to follow these to a T.  Wooden Spoon, check!  Medium Heat, always medium, check! Stir like crazy, (good, I don’t have to do an arm workout today), check!

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Yes this is what I do after work.  Grate fresh Parm.  Highly recommend this as a stress reliever, just watch your fingers….. and you may want to avoid that glass of wine until grating completion.

And do not worry FWMMR, I was chopping these realllllllll FINE.

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Proof I was stirring like crazy! With wooden spoon I might add…

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After killing my arm, sweating, and adding about eight cups of chicken stock; I did it.

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It “blobbed”!(Blobbed: an extremely technical description of final product texture)  Success.  While it is still not perfect, I achieved redemption.  Risotto Redemption.  Thank you FWMMR for your strict instructions and encouragement!

Remember, WOODEN SPOON, MEDIUM HEAT ALWAYS MEDIUM HEAT, STIR LIKE CRAZY.

What is your biggest challenge in the kitchen?