Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Old Man Gas

I have two doggies, Max and Pazzo and they are like my kids.  I think of them as my two little boys! But really one is an old man and one is middle aged.  Max is a Yorkie and reminds me of George Clooney if he were a dog, with his salt and pepper hair, and the way he walks, like he should have a cowboy hat on or something.  Someone the other day described Max's walk as "if he just got off a horse."  But Max has had a problem lately.  A big problem.  GAS.  Lethal smelling toxic gas, that is worst at night when his butt is sleeping right near my face! It's enough to make your eyes water, seriously.  The smell is like something died in his stomach and made a home there.  It's only been the past few months, and I suspect it's because he is getting old.  He is 14.  He is having gas right now, and it could almost make me pass out, and I have a really bad sense of smell, so for a normal person he would clear you out of the room! And he is just laying there like nothing is wrong and it's not him.  Pazzo does not have gas yet, thankfully.  He is just a lovably furry little teddy bear of a creature that everyone loves so much.  He's overweight, but that is his only problem....Max has a few others besides the gas, but we still love him. 

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Welcome to Breakfast

Those that know me, know that I tend to eat really weird things for breakfast, that generally do not consist of "breakfast."  I've been known to have lobster for breakfast, but generally it's pizza or leftover something.  I don't know why but I only really enjoy things like eggs, pancakes and sausage when I am out, or getting something at the drivethru of McDonalds (sausage biscuit please).  

But I do have several cups of tea every morning with honey and lemon.  And I want to know how you take your tea: 

How to you take your tea?

I am pretty obsessed with honey.  I am forever buying new types of honey.  I am using this one right now

Lately when I do make breakfast food I have been making Alexis brand hashed browns.  I really love Alexis brand things.  They have great french fries, mozzarella sticks, and other tasty things and are all organic!  I used to be able to only find this brand at Whole Foods, but now I can find it at Shaws.


I first put the hashed browns in a sautee pan with olive oil and cook for a few minutes, until it becomes soft:

And then I put it in the oven on broil for a few minutes so it comes out crispy.  It is super easy and delicious! 

Sunday, March 28, 2010


I've had the same Burberry Bag for I'd say two years almost, and I love it to death, it has been very good to me.  But it is black and for some reason I am craving a light bag right now.  I have been lusting after this Burberry for awhile, but haven't actually seen it in person yet:

I might get in trouble with the color of this bag, I just feel like everything ever would mark it up, and honestly I treat my handbags, like a bag, I use it and there is wear and tear, I'm not one of those people that would wrap a couch in bubble wrap so underneath it it could look unused.  My bags are used!

I keep telling myself when my jewelry business really "takes off", that I will treat myself to a LV Tote bag, which I've dreamed about for awhile, I just feel like they yell: PROFESSIONAL....The amount of stuff I could put in this bag gives me goosebumps, and also this is half the price of the Burberry bag, just a sidenote!

I keep seeing this bag around too and love it every time I see it, but I don't think it's as awesome as a tote.  But I'll be visiting the mall soon I think to visit these bags and weight the pros and cons of them. 

Decisions, decisions....

Garlic Bread

I've made this garlic bread a few times by just throwing a few simple ingredients together and people always comment on how good it, so I figured I should share it because it is SO easy.  And so much better than buying the frozen kind and putting in the oven!

1 loaf of french or italian bread
3 gloves of fresh garlic - chopped up fine
1 stick of butter - melted
salt and pepper
3 tbsp of white wine
The easiest way to do this is to melt the stick of butter in some kind of tupperwear - like the gladwear - for one minute.  Chop up the garlic and add it to the butter.  Add salt and pepper to taste - depending on how salty or peppery you like things, but I just do a few cranks from the shakers.  Lastly add about 3 tablespoons of white wine.  Take a cooking brush and mix together and put the entire contents on the bread as evenly as possible - it seems like a lot, but it's not!

Put in the oven on broil 1 until the bread is to your liking - it cooks FAST! I usually keep it in the oven for about 10 minutes.  Make sure to watch it! And viola!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Petit Robert Bistro

Laura and I went to Petit Robert Bistro for dinner during Restaurant Week.  This was our first time here, and we were pretty pumped to go here because a) they had french onion soup - and we are on a mission to eat all the french onion soup in Boston and b) we have only heard really great things about this place.  We went to the South End location, and it's a cute little spot.  It has that french old vibe when you walk in.  I think we were like the first or second people seated in this restaurant.  We both ordered a cocktail, we are usually good for one good drink! Laura got this drink that was beer and sprite with grenadine.  It sounds interesting, but this drink was sent back.  I had a martini and it was like some kind of concoction I made as a child where I would sit at a restaurant with my mom and all her friends and mix drinks and condiments and things and call it a Nasty Natasha.  That was what this drink was like.  It honestly might have been the worst thing I have ever drank.  I would have enjoyed more if I went to CVS and got a bottle of robituson and put a straw in it.  This tasted worse.  It looked fine, but it was not!

The restaurant was slowly filling up as we waited for someone to take our order, which was a very long time! We both ordered the same exact meal from the restaurant week menu: french onion soup, duck confit, and peach melba.  We both weren't really sure what melba meant, but we thought it had something to do with toast I think.  

Next came our french onion soup: 

Soupe à l’Onion Gratinée 6.5

The french onion soup looked really good, but the broth wasn't really as flavorful as I was expecting, especially for a french style restaurant.  But it was ok.  Laura thought worse of it than I.  The cheese was good!

Duck Confit and Grilled Sausage with Braised Cabbage 16.75

I really love love love duck, and so does Laura.  It was a tiny bit on the dry side I think, but it was pretty good.  It came with some interesting kind of side that was bacon and cabbage, which actually was kind of good.  The sauce was pretty flavorful too. 

Last came our Peach melba.  I really don't even know what this dessert was to be honest with you.  It was like a half of a peach that came out of a can (WHAT?) with vanilla ice cream, some raspberry sauce, and whipped cream.  This dessert evoked memories for me of someone that doesn't make dessert, trying to make dessert for a dinner party with items they just happened to have in their pantry.  I don't know one good reason to serve a canned peach, other than that! 

I really have only ever heard good things about this restaurant, but I was expecting so much more.  The only real saving grace was the duck, and even at that it wasn't enough to forget the memories of my drink and my dessert.  We figured maybe we would try this restaurant again when it was not restaurant week, but then we realized we have a list of places we need to try that we haven't been to yet, so I don't think we will be seeing PRB anytime soon.  

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Hello! Kitty!

I have a friend, let's call her L just in case she wants to remain anonymous, well she really enjoys Hello Kitty.  And I find every time I see something Hello Kitty that I want to buy it to give it to her.  And lately Target has A LOT of Hello Kitty things and anytime I am there I am like ohhhhhhhh! But I control myself.  I do every so often pick up something small though and give it to her, really anything I've given her in the past year has been Hello Kitty related.  I might just have something right now that is Hello Kitty themed in my arsenal.  I wonder, do you think she get's annoyed by this? I mean, I'm trying to think of something I really like, and if someone was always giving me themed gifts that related to that, would I be like, "Enough! STOP, give me something with a dog on it!"

Cafe Routier

I travel back and forth between CT and NYC a lot because this is where my transplant doctors are, so I tend to stop somewhere in CT to eat if I don't stay in NY.  CT has a lot of great small little towns that I really love, and I'm pretty familiar with all of these places because most of my family lives in CT.  Westbrook is a great little town and has a great restaurant there called Cafe Routier, which means something like "the truck stop" in french.  I've been here a handful of times and they have really amazing french fries and steak.  It's one of those meals you know you can get here and it will be great every time.  But I wanted something a little different.  So, I started with mussels, I didn't really know there were different kinds of mussels but these were sweet PEI mussels, and they were soooooooo sweet! I loved them.  And the broth they were in was incredible.  Bread didn't even do it justice, I could have just drank it.  I think it was the tomatoes that were in it that gave it a little distinction from the normal mussels in wine, butter and garlic.  They gave the sauce a little something else that was really nice. 

Sweet PEI Mussels, Steamed with White Wine,
Shallots, Garlic, Tomato and Saffron - $10

For an entree I had my favorite meal of all time: risotto.  I enjoyed it, although it was a tiny bit dry for my taste.  It could have just been a little more moist and maybe had a little more Reggiano.  It wasn't anything to write home about, it was just "ordinary."  They had a duck item on the menu that I was eying, that I would probably get next time instead of this. 

Cracked Black Pepper, Parmigiano-Reggiano - $19   

I sat at the bar and the service was really good as well.  If you are ever driving through CT, I suggest stopping here!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Rear Gear

I saw this on Chelsea Lately the other night, and just had to share.  If you have a dog (and I would guess a cat) you know that pretty much their butts are showing all the time since their tails are usually up.  Well, some company made a sticker to cover their butthole! Like what? I'm pretty sure Max and Pazzo would kill me if I tried to put a sticker on their butt, but maybe I should try just to document it for this blog, it could be funny.  It's called Rear Gear, have a little chuckle to yourself please.  And you can find them on Etsy (Rear Gear)

What do you guys think??

Butternut Soup

This a recipe that I changed around a good deal taken from Martha Stewart Everyday Food - which is a great cookbook, it has A TON of recipes and most of them are super quick and simple.  It separates the recipes by season too which I love. 


4 tbsp of butter
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 tbsp crystallized ginger (or real ginger)
a sprinkling of ground ginger
a sprinkling of cinnamon
valencia orange peal (this comes as a spice McCormick)
2.5 lbs (or 40 oz) of peeled butternut squash cut into squares
4 cups chicken broth (or veggie broth if you want this to be vegetarian)
1/3 cup heavy cream


First, chop up the onion (doesn't have to be fine because this is going in the blender) and saute it in 3 tbsp of butter for about 2 minutes - until fragrant and translucent.  Then add chopped up garlic, chopped up crystallized ginger, and butternut squash.  Dust the top layer of the butternut squash with ground ginger, cinnamon, and my secret ingredient valencia orange peel spice, the dusting should cover the top (see picture above) stir occasionally and cook for about 8 minutes, add salt and pepper to taste.  Then add 4 cups of chicken broth and 1/3 cup heavy cream and bring to a boil.  Cook until the squash is soft.  Puree in a blender (I do it in two batches.)  This is HOT so make sure to hold the cover on the blender!  

Sometimes I tinker once this is blended and add a little more cream or broth, or butter, or spices, but with these measurements you should be all set.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Myers & Chang

Today I stopped in at Myers and Chang for lunch in the South End.  I should start this post by saying I really really want to love this place, because I truly admire the vision of Joanne Chang.  I've been a frequent visitor of Flour (F2) since they moved near me in Southie and I just loveeeeeeee it there.  I just love what she does.  I can't even really elaborate on that, but I just think she seems like a bright woman who puts a lot of thought into all she does.  And I've always really liked (Christopher) Myers restaurants.  I really loved Great Bay and was sad to see it go.  Anyhow, I love the location of Myers and Chang.  I can always find parking, it's hip and trendy but doesn't try too hard (and close to my apartment.)  I had been here before for dinner with my one of my best friends, who is also my foodie partner in crime Laura (her blog) and I had some type of short rib that knocked my socks off, but the rest of the meal was nothing I would have written home about to be honest, I can't even remember what else we had....  But again I really want to LOVE this place.   I started my lunch off with a cocktail.  I got a no cavitiy check up at the dentist today, I deserved it!  

Plum Wine Spritzer ($9) plum wine, cherry puree & soda

It was yummy! And refreshing!
I really love soup, all kinds of soup, so I started off with soup! 

chicken and rice soup ($8) pork dumpling, baby bok choy

This soup had a little kick to it that I was not expecting.  But to be honest, I can't even chew a piece of big red gum, my mouth cannot handle hot on ANY level.  It was nice, but after a few bites my mouth was pretty hot, so I set it aside.  For anyone else this would have been perfect.  It had a great amount of rice in it, and would have filled anyone up.  

mama chang's pork dumplings  ($11) potsticker-style

I love dumplings, not as much as I love soup, but I do love a good dumping and people say this place has some of the best dumplings around.  They were perfectly cooked on the outside, and had a great flavor to them.  I would order them again.  They tested fresh and I appreciate that they weren't taken out of a package (from what I guess) these are made fresh.  Oh and I didn't not dare try the sauce, it looked HOT!  

The last thing I ordered, was pork belly buns ($9)which was braised pork, steamed buns, hoisin, and pickles with shrimp chips.  Okay, so I don't think I've ever had a steamed bun before because this had the touch and consistency of literally nothing I have ever eaten before.  At first bite I found it odd, but it tasted really good.  And then I got used to it.  I think it was the way it looked more than anything.  The pork was really tasty, had a little fat on it which I don't love, but really tasty and moist, and went perfect with the hoisin sauce (which I love on anything.) This is a picture from my to-go container:

Overall the lunch was really great.  Next time I come I will order the dumplings again and hope it's dinner so I can get the short ribs I had the first time I came here, they were so delicious, sometimes I dream about them! And there is some sort of waffle dish I really want to try here that must be served at dinner.  I should also mention they were pretty packed at lunch today, so other people know how great Myers and Chang is too. 

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Metropolis Cafe

This week and next week is Restaurant Week in Boston, which is a great time to try new places I think! Participating restaurants run a pre-fix menu (for lunch or dinner) of an appetizer, entree, and dessert for 30 dollars a person for dinner, and I think 20 dollars for lunch.  I try to participate in this every year.  Last night I went to Metrolpolis Cafe in the South End.  I have been here before, and it's a little neighborhood gem that I just never really think to go to, which is a shame actually.  It's a cute little place, with a real local feel to it.  It has an eclectic bar that I think is probably filled with locals that walk from their apartments to grab a great meal and a drink.  And it's got an old feel to it.  It has those little tiny white tiles from generations ago on the floor, and lots of brick inside, which I really enjoy.  I went with two other people, and they actually did not order off the pre-fix menu, but I did.  This is their restaurant week menu:

“Winter Caprese”
House Made Mozzarella with Oven Cured Tomatoes, Wild Arugula, and Balsamic Vinegar
Roasted Bell Pepper and Mascarpone Soup
With Basil Infused Olive Oil and Shaved Ricotta Salata

Main Course:
Pan Seared Arctic Charr
With Beluga Lentils, Haricot Vert, and Whole Grain Mustard Cream
Chanterelle and Porcini Mushroom Risotto
With Truffle Shavings and Parmiggiano Reggianno
Seven Hour Vermont PT Farms Pork
With Creamy Polenta Romana, Roasted Winter Vegetables, and Cabernet Pan Jus

Mascarpone Cheesecake with Amarena Cherries
Chilled Fresh Fruit and Zabaglione

I ordered the Winter Caprese for my appetizer and it was truly mouth watering.  The mozzarella is made in house and you can really tell.  It tasted so fresh and homemade, and the oven cured tomatoes were a great touch.  The arugular was just right and just sweet enough with the balsamic, I would say it was actually perfect.  And the olive oil they use was to die for! They served bread and olive oil with roasted garlic chunks in it before our food came, and the olive oil was just amazing.  For my entiree I ordered risotto, and for anyone that knows me, besides lobster, risotto is my favorite meal, and if I can get it with lobster I am in heaven! :-) It was cooked perfectly and had a great flavor.  I think it was lacking a little, I felt it needed some salt, and a little something citrus to cut the woody flavor, but I almost literally licked my plate.  I added a little salt, and squeezed a lemon on it (left from my water) and proceeded to not leave a grain left on my plate.  The people I was with had scallops for their entree, and cod and both said their meals were delicious! For dessert we got one of each, they loved the chilled fruit, which was really clean and simple and fresh, but I really loved the cheesecake.  It was really dense and had an amazing flavor.  

I am going to scale my restaurant reviews with a stick of butter.  1 being the worst and 4 being the best!

I give Metrolpolis cafe 4 sticks of butter.  And I would say run here for restaurant week if you have not gotten the chance to experience this gem of a place.  And if you have, I would say remember it's there.  I think a lot of people just forget for some reason and choose other places in the South End, but you really cannot go wrong here!


Mish Mash

About two months ago I had surgery (a fundoplication aka a stomach wrap for severe acid reflux) and I could only eat pureed food for weeks.  I made a lot of cream soups, and ate more mashed potatoes than anyone should their whole lives, and had every flavor apple sauce known to man, and I ate my weight in pudding! But there was one thing that really got me through when I was craving something "fresh" like a simple piece of fruit!  With all the carbs I was eating, even though a lot of them were fresh and organic and homemade, after so many potoates taking comform in my swollen belly there were a lot of times I just wanted some fresh fruit, which I couldn't eat, but I found something that saved me at Whole Foods.  It's a food for toddlers and babies and it's called Plum Tots.  It's like baby food, but it's all organic and it's more of a mash, than baby food.  Trust my I tried Gerber and that stuff is not a mash, it's a watery puree pretty much (sorry Gerber but you are best left to babies.) These little amazing pouches, best chilled in the fridge, are JUST fruit.  There is NOTHING added! And the consistany is thick and amazing and the next best thing to eating fresh fruit.  After I was able to eat whole foods again, I still kept buying these little pouches, because, well they are great, and you can take them with you on the run, in the car, on a boat, in a plane.  I mean they are just super! So run and get them for your toddlers or babies, or even if you are an adult like me, they are so tasty, so fresh, and so made for the go! They have great combo flavors.  I love the Strawberry Mish Mash and the Peach Mish Mash.  But I hear Babies R Us has a line of "Just" which is one fruit, not a mix.  And they also have veggies, which would be really great for your kids! Maybe not a 20 something like me.  But still I am sure they are just as super as the fruit line. 

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Back to Miami

A few weeks ago I attended the South Beach Wine and Food Fest.  It was my first time at this event and it was really first rate.  It must first be said that this weekend will set you back a bundle! I only attented three events and the cost was $$$$! But it was worth every penny.  The food, the alcohol, the atmosphere was impeccable.   Plus I really love Miami in general! The entire reason I wanted to attend this event (besides the fact I am a die hard foodie) was for The Bubble Q.  The Bubble Q is a champagne themed bbq.  Really, could it get any better than that? 200 bottles of champagne, amazing bbq food, and even champagne sorbet! I stayed at The Delano, and the Bubble Q tent was set up on their beach front, which was amazingly convenient, when drinking and eating so much.  The tent houses, if I had to guess, about 40 chefs preparing their best bbq fare with bubbly flowing every which way.

The Bubble Q: 

Emeril Lagasse hosted the event.  And he had the best dish there! The best pulled pork ever!

Todd English was there.  He was the first to pack up and leave though...shocker! I actually didn't have what he made, the line for his booth was too long. 

The champagne angel.  She was pouring champagne in people's glasses hanging upside like that.  What a talent!


Buddy Love. 

Don't those desserts look lovely?

Emeril doing his thing. 

Day Two: Whole Foods Tasting: 

This was day number two.  This event was similar to the bubble q but much larger, not as fancy, and with A LOT more food and enough alcohol to get a small country drunk! 

Ming Tsai from Blue Ginger

Delicious little shrimp shooters.  Thanks Whole Foods man!

Kettle One Citron had the most amazing little drinks.  They used stirrings mix: green apple, lemon drop, and pomegranate.  Yum!

The cute Evian boy.  I loved the pink!

Day Three: Paula Dean's Brunch:  This was a brunch hosted by Paula Dean, and it was nice to be able to sit down and eat, and not have to walk and hold all your food and drinks.  

Dessert table.  My first stop!

This man, Chris Kelly, had the most amazing pulled pork I've ever eaten my entire life.  I think I had three of his sandwiches!

Katie Lee and her delicious french toast with Nutella and banana.  Oh and by the way, she is stunning in person! 

Dessert time.  

All in all a super weekend, I can't wait to go back next year and possibly attempt to attend this even in NYC!