Monday, July 30, 2007

Yum-e herbs! Yum-e...herbs...???

Yummy yummy experience at Pasta Pomodoro at the Bella Terra Mall in Huntington Beach. Just meeting some girlfriends from work after what seemed like YEARS since we last met at the mall for dinner. And what a nice little surprise it was. After running around to the Cheesecake Factory and refusing to wait 2 hours for a table, we crossed the street over to Pasta Pomodoro. One of my girlfriends had eaten there once before and swore by it so we went on in. "10-15 minute wait?" NO PROBLEM!

Funny how my girlfriend turned to me and said, "So what INTERESTING thing are you going to order today?" I was like, "whah?" I guess apparently, she's used to me ordering some crazy combination of things rather than the typical 1 entree with salad and drink. And by golly, she was RIGHT! I took one look at the appetizer menu and fell in love with their Butternut Squash Ravioli and Asparagus. Not being too hungry, and the fact that I was surrounded by all size 0 (more like size -1) women at the time, I didn't want to eat too much and so instead of ordering an entree, I just went with those two appetizers and decided to leave some room for dessert. To quench my thirst, I thought a nice glass of wine would be really nice after the long drive; and since we'd probably be shuttin' the place down with conversation I thought it'd be just fine. Low and behold, after asking the waitress if she had any wine recommendations, she apologizes for not showing me the wine flights selection that they do just on Fridays (which it was!) and so I immediately ordered a flight of the Riesling, Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc.
Butternut Squash Ravioli
Boy, was I ever happy with my order. The butternut squash was so yummy! Topped with amaretti crumbs (reminds me of Giada De Laurentiis) and decorated with these tasty herb crisps!
Crisp Sage Leaves Closeup
I've never had herbs like this before! they were like these little sweet and salty chips, but they were...sage! This will defnitely be my next experiment! I asked the waitress how it was done and she said that the sage was not dusted with salt or sugar but that they were just boiled first and then baked in the oven along with the ravioli. I don't know about that...all the girls had a try and agreed - there's somethin' going on with something sweet and salty in there. Well, I'll just have to try it and see. But wow - I'd totally order this dish again and good news is that they serve it as an entree also. I'm bringing hubby here for dinner sometime!

The asparagus was excellent. The stalks were of the thin variety, but I didn't mind it much due to the cheese that was shredded on top. I know NOTHING of cheese and I wish I knew more becauswe then I'd make asparagus like this EVERYDAY. (picture missing, sorry.)

Friday Night Wine Flights
The wine that was fun. Getting to try Riesling, Pinot Grigio AND Sauvignon Blanc all for just $6.50, that is one heck of a deal. It seems that you get about a glass and a half's worth...a typical glass of wine costs at least $7 or more. (I'm used to drinking reds, so maybe the price is cheaper for white)

Short visit but sweet. Amazing Butternut Squash Ravioli, yummy asparagus side dish and cheap wine flights, what more could a girl ask for? Oh bad....

Similar recipe perhaps? (for the butternut squash)

Everyone loves...

...FREE cookbooks!

Autumn Omakase
All About Apples

I have not had a chance to look at these yet; I'm just passin' on the news. How I never came across this site before, I do not know. I love the vastness of the culinary Internet!

Vegas Baby!

I've been looking for a list of Vegas restaurant recommendations since making our plans final for our "2nd honeymoon" at the Venetian 2 weeks and have not been successful until now...

How to Kill a perfectly good steak...

Step 1. Buy some really expensive steak (aged and everything) from your local grocer.

Step 2. Do some research on the Internet about how to cook a rib eye steak in your kitchen and not on a grill.

Step 3. Take advice from company that sells steak about how to cook a rib eye.

Step 4. Follow directions to the "T" for medium rare steak, careful to measure the steak thickness and find cooking times on chart. Cross reference times on chart to other charts on the Internet because I 'don't trust the steak people'.

Step 5. Don't feel right about the directions but follow them anyway.

Step 6. Take out steak and have an ill feeling about how it looks but plate it anyway.

Step 7. Make a fancy sauce out of the juices in the pan just in case the steak is totally messed up and you need to cover the steak with a butter/wine sauce.

Step 8. Feed the steak to your significant other and watch them try to smile while they manage to only eat 1/3 of the steak. Notice your jaw start to lock after just eating 3 pieces of your own meat that's obviously overdone.

Step 9. Add tons of butter/wine sauce to your steak.

Step 10. Promise never to cook steak like that again and convince significant other to buy a grill so we can follow other Internet directions on grilling instead. (<---have I not learned????)

Step 11. Rename post title to "How to convince your significant other to buy a grill..."

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Crustacean allows take home!

Ah - got another chance to eat at Crustacean for a girl's nite out dinner and it was delish as usual! The Garlic Noodles are still THE BEST I've ever had. Got to hand it to the women of Crustacean and their secret recipes!

Anyway - the good news that I am posting is that the policy for ordering "food to take home" has changed. (Take home...not take out) Yay! Before you could not order an extra side of Garlic Noodles to go which totally sucked! But this time - the waiter said that "she loosened up on the rules a bit and allows it now." My husband should thank me for I brought him home a fresh cooked batch (which I ended up taking 1/2 to work for lunch the next day). LOL - okay, so I thought of myself for a little bit, do you blame me?! Try those noodles and then try to judge me!

Mmmm, what excuse can I come up with to visit again...