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Posts Tagged ‘Dinner’

Exciting news! Monday night dinners at the parents are back! Though I have been slacking and have not updated for the past couple of weeks, we have been going up to Ormond for dinners. We are fortunate enough to be served delicious organic vegetarian dishes. Also, we have started participating in Front Porch Pickings. We get a large green basket delivered each Friday and we each what we are given. This has made us branch out and try new things and each local and seasonally fresh stuff.

This is some of the first week’s delivery

Friday night dinner to celebrate was sweet potato and bok choy stir fry with cashews.

Plated with raviolis:

Apple dumplings made on a whim.

Hehe. Ashley waiting for dinner or dessert or something.

Another instance of dinner at the rents. Sweet potato biquits which I had about six of, cream spinach, and sweet potato soup.

This is actually dinner at our house with a friend but we have avocado soup and English muffin pizzas.

 

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The Boheme

The Boheme is a restaurant located on the first floor of the Grand Bohemian Hotel in downtown Orlando. We (me, my LW, and my parents-in-law) embarked on a journey to eat at this restaurant as a last night out prior to the parents departure to Europe for a month. LW read that several restaurants in the Orlando area were participating in a fund raising event where if you ordered a three course meal from a special menu of selections, they would donate a percentage to arts programs. We were very choosy about finding which restaurant to eat at and finally decided on The Boheme.

When we arrived it was of course raining and being in downtown Orlando, the options were valet or walk a mile. We ended up walking a mile and getting wet. When we arrived though we were seated immediately at a table. The design of the restaurant was, in my opinion, a mixture of elegance and richness. There were lots of bright colors and photos of exotic animals on the walls. The dining area was well laid out so that each table seemed private. The menus, pictured below, lit up when opened…

LW with the menu. I made her take this of course.

The waiter brought bread to the table automatically and it was delicious. There was a whole grain option and a warm a moist sourdough type that had pesto and balsamic reduction drizzled over the top.

This is a blurry picture of the Lump Crab Cake appetizer that I had. It was almost entirely crab meat and very little filler stuff. It was served with organic arugula and basil oil.

The other appetizer option was this Fried Green Tomato dish. There is a fried green tomato under there somewhere. It is tops with diced tomatoes and goat cheese. As much as I like tomatoes, which is not at all, I hear this dish was tasty.

Cashew crusted and oven roasted Salmon with sauteed spinach, Yukon smash, mandarin glaze and pepper sauce. I thought this dish was very good. It was very filling but tasted so good I ate it all.

Risotto with tomato, pecorino cheese herbs,vodka cream sauce and pea coulis.

Crab Ravioli with sauteed shrimp, sweet peas, asiago cheese, and a vodka cream sauce.

And when you ask for Parmesan cheese at a nice restaurant what do you get? This. Yum.

Desserts were not my style but well put together and flavorful. Mascarpone Cheesecake with blueberries.

Specialty Apple Pie with ice cream. This apple pie was rather good despite the fact that there was no chocolate on it. I was disappointed that there was no chocolate option for dessert on the menu we got to choose from.

Overall, the Boheme was an excellent place to dine. I’m not sure that it should be elegant fine dining and I’m not sure that I would go back there for the price. I suppose for the price you could go to a lot of nice places. The beginning of the meal was the best and gradually declined in amazement from there for me. I give the Boheme two and a half forks. Enjoy.

Elegant Fine Dining:

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So, I was recently invited to try out a recipe and write about it. In keeping with full disclosure, I was given money to buy the ingredients to make this dish. The recipe came from the culinary arts college in Baltimore and featured my favorite food, mushrooms. Here is the recipe:

Portobello Mushroom Ravioli with Brown Butter and Sage

Pasta Dough

(Yield: 3 pounds)

Ingredients:
2 lbs. All purpose flour (Or as needed)
Pinch Salt
8 Eggs
2 oz. Water
2 oz. Oil

Method:

Combine the flour and the salt in a bowl and make a well in the center. Place the eggs, oil and water in the well. Working as rapidly as possible, gradually pull the flour into the liquid ingredients and stir until a loose mass forms. As the dough is mixed, adjust the consistency with flour or water. Turn the dough onto a floured work surface and knead until the texture becomes smooth and elastic. Gather and smooth the kneaded dough into a ball, cover, and let the dough relax at room temperature for at least one hour.

The Filling

(Yield: 1 1/2 quarts)

Ingredients:
10 ea. Portobello mushrooms (Cleaned and sliced with the gills off)
4 ea. Sweet Onions (Sliced)
4 ea. Garlic Cloves (Sliced)
1 C Parmesan cheese (Grated)
1 C Marsala wine
1 T Thyme (Chopped)
1 T Sage (Chopped)
2 T Butter
To taste Salt
To taste Coarse ground black pepper
To taste Nutmeg

Method:

Caramelize the onions in one pan and reserve. Saute the mushrooms in a sauté pan with olive oil, seasoning with salt and pepper. When the mushrooms have a nice dark color from caramelization, add the garlic and sweat. Once the garlic is aromatic, deglaze the pan with the wine and add the caramelized onions, thyme, and sage. Cook until all of the liquid is gone. Fold in the cheese and season to taste with the salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Cool.

At service:

Boil five ravioli until they float. In a hot sauté pan, with two tablespoons of butter and two sage leaves, sauté the ravioli until the outside is slightly golden brown.

Though it is sort of like telling the punchline of a joke before the joke itself, here is the delicious and delicious looking finished product:

I must say that the dish turned out quite well. Both Ashley and I enjoyed it very much. The flavor and the texture of the filling turned out very nice. Ashley liked that the filling wasn’t mushy like it sometimes can be. I wasn’t sure that the dish would have been much different had it been just pasta with mushrooms and cheese but then Ashley pointed out that the ravioli provided a nice texture with thicker dough around the outside. She was right of course. I did enjoy it as a ravioli instead of a pasta.

Here is my process:

One thing I must mention about making the dish is that I wouldn’t recommend this recipe to anyone that has never hand-made pasta or ravioli before.  It’s not that I wouldn’t recommend people to try a new recipe or technique, because I’m telling my friends all the time how good home-made pasta is, but that this recipe doesn’t specify the steps to take in turning your lump of dough and filling into a successful ravioli. By successful I mean that it doesn’t fall apart completely when boiling. Ashley and I frequently make our own pasta and have made ravioli many times, so we knew what to do and how to do it. We have a pasta machine that helps as well because we didn’t have to roll out the dough by hand. Also, we did not make the entire amount that was specified by the recipe as it made a LOT of food.

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This week’s random food pictures include icecream that we had from Bruster’s. Bruster’s is a chain icecream joint that we found in Georgia on our trip. I also made a yummy vegetable quiche and Ashley and I together made crepes.

Chocolate cone:

Dirt sundae:

The quiche with just veggies added:

The quiche after filling but before baking:

The quiche just out of the over:

The filling for the crepes (I added cheese after this was taken and it thickened up a bit):

The crepes (home-made by Ashley):

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Last week I got a whim that I wanted to make vegetarian stew.  I came home and we conveniently had a bunch of random ingredients so I decided to give it a try.  I added frozen peas, corn, carrots, and potatoes.

I also added butter, garlic, canned tomatoes (made by Ashley), a little bit of flour and a little bit of brown sugar. Also I LOT of red wine.

I sautéed the garlic and butter.

Added the veggies, and wine and other random stuff.

Ashley documented the process of course.

The finished stew with cheese.

If I made it again I would not add the brown sugar and would have it over rice or something. Otherwise, it was lovely for a spontaneous homemade vegetarian meal.

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Another weekly dinner at Judy and Ted’s house was delicious.

These are goat cheese filled puff pastries;

Homemade vegetable pot pies:

Served together.  The goat cheese pastries are topped with a  little balsamic. Note the Cabernet Sauvignon which wasn’t half bad.

Dessert was chocolate-peanut butter cookies and Starbucks Fraps. I may have eaten most of my cookies before remembering to take the photo.

Thanks, parents!

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Last week we had an impromptu dinner with Ashley’s parents where I pulled out some ingredients from the fridge and made something delicious.  I used spinach, garlic, pecans, tomatoes, mozzarella, and olive oil for the sauce.

Over pasta and with bread, it was delicious.

I also made a tasty dinner at home a couple of days ago.  I made a second attempt at meatless meatloaf.  I mixed carrots, spinach, pecans, mushrooms, breadcrumbs, an egg, and some seasonings for the “meat” part of it.

Baked on 375 with cheese on top for 25ish minutes.

Served with rice and my specially made meatless meatloaf sauce which may have included ketchup, soy sauce, milk and a special ingredient.

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