Tag Archives: cuisine

Fish Central, London UK

2 Aug

Fish Central Restaurant London

On my first night in London, I was beat. After a long 25 hour day of traveling (from the time I left my house until I arrived at my hotel in London), I was beat and ready for dinner.

I knew of a couple of nice restaurants a few miles away but after the long day I wasn’t up for taking a cab or walking around so I searched my iphone apps for a local restaurant near my hotel and I found a well rated seafood place right behind my hotel.  Turned out it was even better then I was expecting.  Nice ambiance, good service and the seafood tasted very fresh and very good.

Fish Central can be found at 149-151 Central St., St Luke’s, Greater London EC1V 8BY
Website: http://fishcentral.co.uk

About Fish Central from their website

We believe the national heritage of the “Great British invention”, fish and chips, something we have built our reputation on for 40 years will always be with us.

However as eating out has become one of the nations favourite past times Fish Central has evolved into a bustling neighborhood restaurant with a private function room. we serve the well known as well as the more exotic varieties of the freshest fish, combined with daily produce purchased from borough market to create a value for money menu for everyone.

We endeavor to purchase the freshest fish and Crustacea from ethical and sustainable sources without compromising the high standards our loyal regulars come to expect.

In short we try to do the best for our customers, producers, fishermen and the environment, so we can be here for another 40 years.

Anchovy Appetizer

Port wine with chocolate souffle and sweet biscuit

Beers and Pubs in Amsterdam

1 Aug

I recently traveled to Amsterdam for work during June and again in July and found the food and dining there to be absolutely outstanding!  So many choices of great food and beverages were to be found everywhere all within walking distance while staying at the city center in Amsterdam.

This is the beginning of a series of articles and photography of restaurants and pubs I visited during my travels to London and Amsterdam in June and July of 2013.

This first in a series of foodie related photos I’ll be posting. This first set are photos of various brew pubs and beers that I visited and tried while in Amsterdam.

Water Grill in Los Angeles

16 Dec

I had the extreme pleasure of dining at the Water Grill in Los Angeles on company business while in Southern California this past week. The ambiance, service and food were absolutely fantastic.  The best way to describe this restaurant is to refer to their website which offers the following  definition and industry reviews.

Water Grill is the ultimate example of fine dining in Los Angeles. Hailed as “the best seafood in Southern California” by the internationally recognized Zagat Guide, Water Grill has consistently offered dazzling fish preparations of superior quality and freshness.
“…Each element on the plate is a standout, yet together the flavors are married to perfection in a harmonious presentation inspired by nature.”StarChefs

Inspired, adventurous and inventive sums up the Water Grill. Praised by Zagat Survey as Los Angeles’ top seafood restaurant since the day it opened, Water Grill has become an institution of excellence. In service, food, presentation, décor, ambiance and overall guest experience, this Downtown favorite exceeds all expectations.” Downtown LA Dining Magazine 

“Warm deco stylings inspire the gleaming luxe raw bar, with intimate booths tucked on one side and a lively, airy dining room on the other accented with auburn wood, marble columns, white tablecloths, cushioned chairs and booths. Theatergoers, investment bankers and downtown-based tourists comprise the lively crowd.”  City Search, LA

My dinner started with Wild Fijian Big Eye Tuna Tartar with thai red chili and green papaya

The entree was a delicious Wild Columbia River Sturgeon pan roasted with horseradish cream, toasted walnuts, and roasted beet risotto.

To top it all off, desert was a divine Tahitian Vanilla Creme Brulee’ with Orange Cognac Caramel, Mandarin Orange Sorbet and Cardamom Churros.

To drink we had a great Frogs Leap Chardonay from Napa and at desert I tried a Yalumba Tawny Port from Australia that was very nice.

Water Grill
544 South Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA, 90071
Tel. 213-891-0900

Blue Nami in Folsom

15 Dec

My wife and I enjoy good sushi and we’ve been many times to a variety of the local sushi restaurants in Folsom.

Recently a new sushi place opened in the new Palladio Mall in Folsom, called Blue Nami. I hadn’t had a chance to try them out yet when recently my good friend Tom told me about his experiences there and highly recommended I try the place out, he said not only was the food great, but the prices were outstanding.

So the next opportunity I got, my wife and I ventured over to Blue Nami in Folsom at the new Palladio Mall and we were impressed as soon as we stepped in the door. The decor was really well done and very unique. We were immediately seated and met with our waitress soon after.

We checked out the menu and found that all their house rolls were 50% off, all the time. They have a great menu with some very good combinations. We tried several different rolls and enjoyed each and every one. Everything was delicious and tasted fresh. Our waitress was very attentive and helpful with our selections.

The bill was the best part, the total cost was literally half of what we’ve been paying everywhere else, AND the food was all good and fresh.

We look forward to going back soon to try more of their sushi rolls. Two thumbs up for Blue Nami

Blue Nami
330 Palladio Parkway #2045
Folsom , Ca. 95630
916.983.3388

Cooking with Spices

20 Aug

Spices for taste

Spices are what make our food preparations better tasting – the mixtures and results are the science of culinary art. There are so many flavors, hot, sweet, salty and more. The mixtures and concoctions of spice blends are endless.

Wikipedia has a great description of spices:

spice is a dried seedfruit,root,  barkleaf, or vegetative substance used in nutritionally insignificant quantities as a food additive for the purpose of flavour, colour, or as a preservative that kills harmful bacteria or prevents their growth.[1]

Many of these substances are also used for other purposes, such as medicine, religious ritualscosmetics,  perfumery or eating as vegetables. For example, turmeric is also used as a preservativeliquorice as a medicine;  garlic as a vegetable. In some cases they are referred to by different terms.

In the kitchen, spices are distinguished from herbs, which are leafy, green plant parts used for flavouring purposes.  Herbs, such as basil or oregano, may be used fresh, and are commonly chopped into smaller pieces.  Spices, however, are dried and often ground or grated into a powder.  Small seeds, such as fennel and mustard seeds, are used both whole and in powder form.

For this dinner I made Sri Lankan Beef Curry (recipe below). The blends of the spices coriander, cumin, fennel,tumeric, black pepper and salt made for a savory beef with a nice texture and heat added with the coconut milk and minced jalapeno’s. This is one very tasty dish that I highly recommend everyone try making at least once.

Recipe from myrecipes.com

YIELD

8 SERVINGS (SERVING SIZE: ABOUT 2/3 CUP BEEF MIXTURE AND 3/4 CUP RICE)

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground fennel
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 1/2 pounds boneless sirloin steak, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
  • Cooking spray
  • 3 cups chopped onion (about 2 medium)
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 red jalapeño peppers, minced
  • 3 cups light coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 (1 x 3-inch) lemon rind strips
  • 6 cups hot cooked basmati rice

PREPARATION

Cook coriander, cumin, fennel, and turmeric in a small saucepan over medium-low heat 7 minutes or until toasted, stirring occasionally.

Combine toasted spices, black pepper, salt, and beef in a large bowl. Cover and marinate in refrigerator 1 hour.

Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion, ginger, garlic, and jalapeños; sauté 3 minutes or until onions are tender. Remove onion mixture from pan. Recoat the pan with cooking spray. Add half of beef; cook 6 minutes, browning on all sides. Remove beef from pan. Repeat procedure with remaining beef. Return onion mixture and beef to pan; stir in milk, vinegar, and rind, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 2 hours or until beef is very tender. Discard rind. Serve over rice.

Enjoy!

Best Burgers in the U.S.

10 Aug

According to Fine & Wine magazine these are the best burger places in the USA.  I am not at all surprised to see the first place on the list…. California’s own In-N-Out! Congrats!

The burger, America’s quintessential comfort food, can now be enjoyed in an impossibly endless number of ways. There are round-the-clock burgers at 24-hour-roadside joints and ephemeral late-night burgers sold out in mere minutes; burgers grilled in hundred-year-old cast-iron broilers and burgers steamed in state-of-the-art ovens; burgers crafted from Kobe beef imported from Japan and burgers made with Black Angus beef from just down the road; burgers innocuously topped with melted American cheese and burgers piled high with crumbly, statement-making Roquefort cheese. It’s clearly a great time to love the burger. Here, we’ve singled out the 25 best burgers around the country.

By Ratha Tep, Lawrence Marcus

California: In-N-Out Burger

Best Burgers in the U.S.: In-N-Out Burger: Cheeseburger

In-N-Out’s Cheeseburger. Photo © Jess Lander

Signature Burger: Cheeseburger.

Even superstar chef Thomas Keller is a fan of the West Coast chain—and with good reason. The cooked-to-order burgers are made from Harris Ranch beef and served with hand-cut fries. For a messier, more indulgent experience, order your burger “Animal Style” for extra sauce and chopped grilled onions. in-n-out.com 

New York City: Minetta Tavern

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Minetta Tavern

Photo © Sylvia Paret.

Signature Burger: Black Label Burger (topped with with caramelized onions).

Minetta Tavern’s excellent burgers use a beef blend—dry-aged rib eye, skirt steak, brisket and short rib—from famed purveyor Pat La Frieda, and buns from Balthazar Bakery. minettatavernny.com 

Atlanta, GA: Holeman & Finch

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Holeman & Finch

Photo © Jeff Moore.

Star chef Linton Hopkins announces “burger time”—10 p.m.—with the ringing of two bull horns; that’s when two dozen grass-fed beef burgers are up for grabs and consistently sold out within minutes. The burgers are also available on the Sunday brunch menu. holeman-finch.com 

Arlington, VA: Ray’s Hell Burger

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Ray's Hell Burger

Photo © Robyn Lee.

Signature Burger: Basic Beef Burger (served in a brioche bun).

There’s no sign, yet dedicated fans—a certain president included—come here for the freshly ground burgers with and complimentary toppings like grilled onions and mushrooms sautéed in sherry and Cognac.

Boston, MA: Craigie on Main

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Craigie on Main

Photo courtesy of Craigie on Main.

Signature Burger: Beefburger.

Star chef Tony Maws adds bone marrow and dehydrated miso to his Bar Burger, and cooks it in a low heat CVap oven, followed by a quick char on the plancha. craigieonmain.com 

San Francisco, CA: Zuni Café

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Zuni Café

Photo © Bill Holmes.

Signature Burger: House-ground hamburger (served in a grilled rosemary focaccia).

Instead of traditional cucumber pickles, legendary chef-owner Judy Rodgers accents her burgers with thin-cut zucchini strips pickled in apple cider vinegar, mustard seeds and turmeric. zunicafe.com 

New Haven, CT: Louis’ Lunch

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Louis' Lunch

Photo © Michael Franzman.

Signature Burger: The Original Burger (prepared with a combination of chuck and sirloin beef).

Many restaurants claim to be the birthplace of the hamburger. Louis’ Lunch, in New Haven, Connecticut, since 1900, is a leading contender. The meaty hand-shaped patties are grilled on antique cast-iron broilers over an open flame. louislunch.com 

Memphis, TN: Dyer’s Burgers

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Dyer's Burgers

Signature Burger: Dyer’s Cheeseburger.

The legendary patties here are pounded thin before they’re cooked in a cast-iron skillet filled with grease for a deliciously crisp exterior.dyersonbeale.com 

Chicago, IL: Custom House Tavern

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Custom House Burger

Photo © Tuan Bui.

Signature Burger: Custom House Burger (short rib, sirloin and ground pork patty topped with aged cheddar cheese and shaved onion, served in a sourdough brioche bun).

The “Custom House Burger”—available only on the lunch and bar menu—comes with house-made steak saucecustomhouse.cc 

Miami, FL: Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink

Best Burgers in the U.S.: Michael's Genuine Food & Drink

Photo courtesy of Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink.

Signature Burger: Black Angus Burger (served in a brioche bun).

An optional topping for star chef Michael Schwartz‘s Harris Ranch Black Angus beef burger: house-smoked bacon. michaelsgenuine.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Purple Place Burger

10 Aug
The Purple Place

Went to the Purple Place last week to try their burger that has won a few “best of” contests.

I’d been here years ago, but since then its changed ownership and the entire place upgraded. There’s a really nice menu now that consists not only of bar food basics such as hot wings and nacho’s but they also serve seared sea scallops, pot stickers and more. For their entree’s they range from scallop risotto (which I can’t wait to try!), prawns, new york steak, ribs, tacos and a line up of burgers, sandwiches & panini’s.


I tried the cheeseburger with cheddar with the works along with garlic fries. It all was very tasty and I look forward to going back to The Purple Place to try some of the other items on the menu.

Located at 363 Green Valley Road, El Dorado Hills
http://www.purpleplacebarandgrill.com

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