Archive for October, 2007

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Halloween Trivia Contest

October 30, 2007

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I’m so excited that I actually have something fun to do tonight in celebration of Halloween (I hate that it’s on a Wed, and thus we’ve all had to celebrate the holiday for the past 5 days). Jo the MasterBaker, J, and I will all be going to NY Mag’s All Hallow’s Madness… open bar… should be interesting. I’m going to be a pirate, ARG!, and J is going to be a subway car. Why is he so much craftier than me?! But anyways, there’s a fun scavenger hunt that’s happening before the event. We don’t really have time to participate, but I wanted to let you all in on the fun. I’m listing all the restaurant/bar related places we need to find—whoever answers all 4 first (and correctly), I’ll send you a prize. Really, I will. Something ridiculous. OK… off you go:

  • The 7th Ave W. Village eatery with a famous case of split personalities?
  • Dylan Thomas consumed 18 shots of whiskey here & now his ghost haunts the place?
  • Sadly, a murdered woman found her end in 1799 in what is now the basement of this Spring Street restaurant. Bottles flying mysteriously off the shelves?
  • Romantic restaurant supposedly haunted by Aaron Burr’s daughter Thodosia who is rumored to steal patron’s earrings?

Photo via.

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Tailor, Not The Right Fit

October 29, 2007

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On Friday night, the ladies and I made dinner reservations at Tailor, the new dessert-focused restaurant in SoHo. I was pretty excited about this culinary adventure—Sam Mason’s food is supposed to be daring and delicious. But I have to say, I was disappointed. I think RestaurantGirl said is best, “With any restaurant, there are dishes that hit and some that miss. But here, with only six sweet and six salty options to choose, the odds are not in your favor.” It’s the truth: there are only 12 SMALL plates to choose from, and the tasting menu costs $30 for 3 savory plates and $50 for a choice of any 3. You end up shelling out mucho $ for a meal, and you’re still hungry at the end of it. I do have a few positives: the pork belly dish was out-of-this-world. I now understand all chef’s fascination with this ingredient. It’s warm, and comforting, and the miso butterscotch makes the dish sweet and savory at the same time. Plus, the char covered in some sort of passion fruit sauce made my mouth water with goodness. We also got the duck which was a solid B+ dish, and the foie gras with peanut butter that just sorta tasted like muddled mush. On to the sweet: here’s where I ran for the hills. I took one bite of both the soft chocolate with sesame ice cream and the rum-braised banana with mustard ice cream. Maybe I’m just not that adventurous, but I didn’t like either of these “sweets.” A few of my dinner-friends enjoyed the whole meal, so I’m not saying this restaurant is bad. In fact, it’s quite good at times, and the space is huge and swanky and makes you feel like you’re having a grand dining experience. Sidenote: I loved that the waiters wore suit-like outfits with faux-stitching along the seams. But I think, just not my cup of tea. Nor my cup of “Crumble,” the odd cocktail with clove, pear cider, and brown butter rum that my dinner-mates adored, and I could barely sip. I guess I’m not as adventurous as I’d like to be.

See what the pros had to say about it.

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Create Your Own Cookbook

October 25, 2007

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Check out this brand-new way to create your own cookbook. Over at TasteBook.com, you can browse the recipes at Epicurious, pick your favorites, and then have TasteBook bind them into one, cohesive cookbook. Pretty awesome. It’s much cleaner and prettier than that dingy 3-ring binder your mom gave you, or that weird folder that you stuff tear-outs into. If you want to add a personal touch, you can include some recipes of your own with the Epicurious ones. The books can hold up to 100 different dishes. Or, if you’re lazy, you can buy one of their pre-filled books (things like Holiday Cookies or Kids’ Favorites) and add recipes later. I was surprised at how well-designed and professional these books look, and the price isn’t too bad either: $35. Is it something you’d buy?

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Graffiti for Your Kitchen Cabinets

October 22, 2007

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I really love when magazines use fun, quirky handwriting in their designs. J and I went to a talk/book-signing for the creator of a new book called Hand Job, all about handwritten fonts and designs, and the entire book is full of stuff I want to steal. Hand drawings give such a personal element that you can’t find with proper fonts, and there’s this fun feeling that you’ll never see it done the same way twice. But anyway, to the point—I want to make my own cabinet graffiti like this one that I saw on Apartment Therapy Kitchen (it was originally on Cookie). I think it’d be fun to get recipes from all the important people in your life and then stick them up on the inside of your cabinets with the help of Wonderful Graffiti. Or I could do a breakfast cabinet, a lunch one, and a dinner. Fun!

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Dinner at Perilla

October 22, 2007

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Sorry for the delayed post, but J and I celebrated our 1-year anniversary (yay!) on Thursday night at Perilla. As you may already know, I love this restaurant. The first time we ate there, we couldn’t even speak to each other because everything we put in our mouths was so delicious. But this time around, it wasn’t quite a home-run. We loved our appetizer—split the spicy duck meatballs. We were bummed that we didn’t get them the first time, and we should have been. The duck makes a normally hearty meatball nice and light without taking anything away, and there’s a slight hint of mint that tastes amazing in the middle. Plus, the sauce is creamy, and there’s a small (what I assume is some sort of quail) egg yolk that you can soup your meatball and sauce into. J had a Cornish Game Hen dish that was also really good—very fall flavors with apple sauce (or apple puree, or something) on the side. But here’s where it went wrong—I decided to go out on a limb and get the Wild Boar Milanese. I’ve never had Wild Boar, and I’m all about trying new things lately. But what I got tasted and looked like a breaded chicken cutlet with salad on top. It was dry, and very plain. The Wild Boar is a bit heartier than a chicken cutlet, but the flavor is very similar and I wasn’t blown away by the dish. I do have to say that Harold’s pasty chef really saved the meal for me, though, with a RIDICULOUS take on peanut butter and jelly. I don’t remember the exact description, but it tasted like peanut butter ice cream cake with a grape sorbet on the side. And J got the chocolate tart that was yummy (but mine was better!). I also had a great glass of wine that was brand new for me, but I don’t remember the name—thus my problem with wine. Definitely the highlight of the night was actually seeing Harold come out of the kitchen… twice.

Photo via.

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Orange You Glad I Said Sangria?

October 19, 2007

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Love this! Only a theory as of now, but someone make this happen ASAP! Sangria would taste so delicious.

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Perfect Pumpkin Recipes

October 17, 2007

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Jo the MasterBaker has decided to share the recipes for 2 different treats she made over the weekend. Wahoo!

The first is a Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake (click here for the recipe). She made a few substitutions to try to cut down on the calories (amen!): she bought the pre-made graham cracker crust, used Neufchatel Cream Cheese (1/3 less fat! and better tasting), and Splenda sugar substitute. She says, “still delicious and creamier than the Junior’s pumpkin cheesecake that someone else brought.” So ha!

The second is a Chocolate Chunk Pumpkin Bread (click here for the recipe) that I got the pleasure of tasting. It was so yummy—like warm, soft, comforting pumpkin bread with a little hidden surprise inside. Here Jo decided to make muffins instead of bread, and she says, “just make sure you cut the baking time to about 20 min. or until a toothpick comes out clean.”

Happy baking! And those of you who tasted either of these, please share in praising the MasterBaker.