Thursday, May 29, 2014

Sunday, May 25, 2014

A new menu at Texas French Bread

Well folks, it's menu changeover at Texas French Bread, which happens more often than not, but is still just as exciting every time. New on the appetizer front are seasonally fried green tomatoes and a summer squash bruschetta.

But the shining star is the cucumber salad, who'd have thought?! The freshness provides for a flavor not many know a cucumber to have. And the accompanying mint highlights just that taste.

The lamb chops were delicious. Cooked just right and served with a sauce to be soaked right up.

Of course there are a few oldies, but goodies, including the pork milanese and steak frites. Beef that is perfectly Texas and Belgium-style fried to order frites where you struggle to share because they are so good.

And our repeat offender, we had to end with the coconut meringue cake. Another wonderful dining experience.

Below is the new menu:

Friday, May 23, 2014

Picking the Perfect Avocado

When it comes to making a good Guacamole, it starts with picking the perfect avocado.

First things first, you want an avocado that is soft to touch, but consistent all over. If you give the avocado a slight squeeze and it is extremely soft in some spots, but hard in others, this just means the avocado is bruised. When it is soft at every feel, it is perfectly ripe.

Now don't be fooled by the color.  Most people will intuitively think that the lighter green avocado is not yet ripe, whereas the darker purplish colored avocado has further ripened.  This is not necessarily the case, but rather relates to the type of avocado. The all-so-popular Haas avocado has the purple hue, whereas many of the other varieties are green.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Spiced Orange Crabbie's

A Ginger Beer with a zesty zing?! Yes, please.

The perfect season to season sipper.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Antonelli's Cheese Shop

Most Austinites would agree that Antonelli's Cheese Shop is a welcomed addition to the neighborhood with rows and rows of cheese after cheese...

The cheeses are as local as the state of Texas to other domestics - Wisconsin (of course), California, and even my home state of Michigan! Then of course you have your popular imports from Spain, France, et al.

And I don't know how they do it, but they want you to sample and try every single cheese. As each customer enters the store, they are greeted by their very own cheese monger, ready to serve up suggestions and samples. 

They're truly passionate about the love of cheese and more than happy to share their wealth of knowledge. For example, did you know that imported Brie is made especially by France for the U.S. per FDA standards? Apparently it is quite the cheese controversy.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

A Tribute to the Moms

Today I am reminiscing scenes from the movie Submarine. The first conversation goes:

Oliver: Mum?
Mother: Yes?
OliverWho would you save first in a fire, given the hypothetical situation that Dad and I were equally hard to save?
Mother: Ok, I’d go for you but I’d feel bad for your father.

Later on in the movie:

OliverDad, who would you save first in a house fire, given the hypothetical situation that both Mum and I were equally difficult to save?
Father: I’d save your mother first so we had a better chance of working together to save you.

This year Mother's Day is bittersweet - it's my first being a Mom, but also my first without a Mom. 

A special reminder for everyone to love your mom today, and every day. She already does so for you.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Cherry Pie

It's that time of year again - cherry season! I saw some cherries at the market the other day and couldn't resist a big bag full. 

So of course, what better to do with a plethora of cherries than to make a cherry pie! Needless to say, the benefactors in my family were excited.

What you'll need...

- Pie Dough*
- About 4 cups of cherries
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon corn starch
- 1/8 cup of water

* The pie dough recipe calls for making the dough one day in advance. While this yields a better composition of the crust, if you're really in a pinch for time, go ahead and do it all in one.

What to do...