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Posts Tagged ‘food’

My apologies for my silence here–I’ve been hard at work over at Take Back Your Kitchen, but I promise I’ll be back here!  In the meantime, please feel free to check out the new site!

Cin cin!

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In the five years I’ve either lived or visited New Haven, I had never found an opportunity to visit Louis’ Lunch, the famous, teeny joint whose claim to fame is having served the first hamburger.  It’s right across the street from BAR, which is one of my favorite restaurants thanks to its delicious, cheap pizza and delicious, cheap house beers, and usually when we’re in that part of the city it’s to go to get pizza instead of hamburgers.  But while we were out on Friday celebrating a good friend’s successful thesis defense, our buddy C proposed a quick trip across the street for no other reason other than none of us had been there, and it’s a piece of New Haven’s culinary history.

Care to check it out?

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Front façade of the building, which is charmingly small and is the establishment’s fourth location after having a lunch wagon in two parts of New Haven and a tannery which has since been demolished.

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L’illusionista;

Since we decided to go to a party on Valentine’s Day to mix things up a bit, Saturday will be our designated night of staying in and making dinner, our normal way of marking the holiday.

I proposed to add a twist to the festivities, however–using a rewards certificate from Amazon.com, I managed to get a copy of Fellini’s 8 1/2 after seeing how much we both enjoyed watching La Dolce Vita a few months ago.  Given that it was filmed in and around Rome, we’re going to try some Roman dishes and sip on some Montepulciano d’Abruzzo (which, by the by, is becoming more prevalent here in the States and is an extremely well-priced Italian red compared to others, but that’s another post).

Here’s the original film trailer to set the mood:

Some initial thoughts for meal ideas include Roman-style lamb, bucatini alla’amatricana, and stracciatella alla Romana, but other suggestions are  more than welcome in the comments.

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Due to the ridiculousness of last week’s episode, rife with gimmicks, product placements and misnomers of “all-stars,” I have chosen not to recap it.  I will wax a little on Jeff’s exit, however; while likely not the Top Chef in this group, he is extremely talented–I just wish he could focus his ideas more and not try to do too much.  According to his exit interviews this is his modus operandi, but I wish he would apply Coco Chanel’s advice to his plates:  take one ingredient, or concept, or garnish, off of it before it goes out to the diner.

But enough about that–this week it’s all about the fish and the New York epicenter for amazing fish:  Le Bernadin!

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(image from the NY Times)

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From the first season of Top Chef, the challenge now affectionately known as Restaurant Wars has always been entertaining, from Stephen in season 1 babbling ad nauseum about the wine selection for his restaurant, to the do-over required in season 3, and this go-around was no different.

Appropriately enough the guest judge for both rounds this week was Stephen Starr, a name well-known to foodies in Philadelphia thanks to his impressive stable of restaurants ranging from the original Morimoto’s (the second being in New York) to the Continental in Old City to the now-closed Striped Bass which was the gorgeous setting for a particularly heartbreaking scene in The Sixth Sense.  He has since expanded to other cities, including New York and Atlantic City, and his concepts are generally flawless in design and atmosphere, though I cannot say the same for his food because, frankly, I haven’t tried it–his menus are not exactly college-student-friendly.  He is, however, a natural fit for both the Quickfire as well as the Elimination Challenge, as we shall see beyond the jump.

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Image from Bravotv.com (more…)

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I tend to use orzo often when making pasta dishes because it’s just so versatile–it works well in soups, pasta salads and even in faux-risotto dishes–and it also doesn’t necessarily need the giant pasta pot that long noodles require if you’re only making pasta for one or two people.  The original recipe that this is an adaptation of calls for spaghetti, but when we substituted orzo the lemony sauce coated the pasta much more evenly and the parsley added a bit more of a bite than the basil does, especially for this time of year.

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Dio mio!  This week’s episode was one that got this household fired up, for oh so many reasons, so let’s just dig in and honor this episode, shall we?

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Image, as always, from Bravotv.com, but for some reason it won’t let me link directly  to it. 

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