• 12Sep

    ulah bistro october dcfbhhNext DCFBHH is at Ulah Bistro on 10/1/14 from 6pm to 8pm.

    While I don’t think I can actually attend this one, I thought it would be nice to share the info with you. This month’s Host is Johnna.

    -JAY

  • 10Sep
    appetite-festival-banner

    This incredible two-day food festival, the first of its kind held at the Strathmore in North Bethesda, showcased headliners Giada De Laurentiis and Andrew Zimmern along with many other food experts.

    This two-day event offered food trucks, a beer garden, live music, live cooking demonstrations, tastings, and more.

    Friday’s half day event started off with a 2-hour happy hour with food fare for sale by the Strathmore Restaurant Associates followed by Giada De Laurentiis on the main stage.

    Giada De Laurentiis_FULL

    Giada De Laurentiis

    Giada’s  charming persona makes you feel like you’ve just been welcomed right into her home much like her Food Network show, Giada at Home.  She two separate volunteer groups up to help her cook two Italian dishes.  The first dish was a muffaletta which is a popular Italian sandwich filled with meats, olive tapenade and roasted peppers in a large thick sourdough bread.  The second dish was a tortellini in a creamy peas-based sauce with prociutto.

    While her volunteers cooked the dishes she talked about her personal life at home, life as a food network star, and took several questions from the audience including taking a couple of selfies with fans in the audience.

    Satuday

    Day 2 offered a day of cooking workshops and demonstrations from executive chefs, local food trucks and the evening headliner Andrew Zimmern, star of Travel Channel’s “Bizarre Food.”  Besides the headliner, my favorite of the day was the Peruvian street fare from Mitsitam Café with guest chef Jerome Grant heading up the grill.  Their offering of Anticuchos Asados (cow heart) was seasoned and cooked to perfection.  As a big fan of animal innards, I was very excited and pleased to see this offering at the festival.  Like most innards, if not cooked properly, your experience can be very unappetizing.  Overcooked, it can taste putrid and under cooked it can be chewy or gamey, but cooked to perfection it can give you a burst of flavor which is exactly what Chef Grant provided with this dish.  I’m sure that chicken-eaters have had some form of Peruvian chicken in their lifetime but you’ve missed out if you didn’t get a chance to have the one at Mitsitam Café.  This generous portion of chicken was mouthwatering, fall off the bone, and spiced to perfection so that it didn’t even need the side of sauce to go with it  ̶  definitely the highlight of the day.

    Andrew Zimmern_FULL

    Andrew Zimmern

    In the evening , Andrew Zimmern spoke about breaking through the typical American mindset and opening up your food palette to experience new things even if it means eating a few rodents and bugs along the way.  Zimmern is one of my favorite television personalities as I like to watch “Bizarre Foods” and comment, “That’s not weird.  I eat that stuff all of the time,” but he still finds ways to amaze me with bizarre foods that I never would’ve imagined to eat.

    Because he doesn’t cook on his show, many don’t realize that he’s actually a chef himself.  And he demonstrated in his own way three different dishes that had people squirming in their seats.  His first dish was California Squirrel as he encouraged the audience to consider local game as normal protein.  His next dish was live crickets.  Yes, you heard right, he had a jar of live crickets which he stir fried and accidentally knocked half of the jar on the floor.  His final dish contained duck testicles.  His takeaway at the end of the night was to challenge yourself to try new things and to see food as the cultural foundation for bringing people together.

    To learn more about the Appetite Festival and to get more information about next year’s event visit their website at www.strathmore.org/appetite.

    -ADT (Angie)

  • 27Aug

    Anita of Greg’s List DC is hosting this moth’s Happy Hour at the newly opened Dino’s Grotto in Shaw. You can RSVP here.

    -JAY

    DinoFlier

  • 15Aug
    IMG_20140815_151533_602

    CSA box production line. The ones with kale on top are complete.

    Groupon has  a certificate (which they are almost out of so move quickly) that lets you get a produce box from Nall’s (Friday or Saturday) for $12 ($22 value). I just picked up this week’s box, which includes peaches, nectarines, 2 bunches of kale, mushrooms, 4 large green bell peppers, 3 huge peaches, 3 small nectarines, 2 ears of corn and a canary melon. They handled my mushroom allergy by making a box up for my separately and substituting a teeny loaf of bread.

    I will say that 4 big green bell peppers is a lot of green peppers for me–a variety of pepper colors would have been nicer. I have no intention of making stuffed peppers, so some of them may go bad before I can eat them in salads or put some in this or that dish.

    I also bought strawberries, yellow summer squash, a large yellow tomato, and a bottle of Runningbyrd Summer Rain local artisinal sweet tea. I buy a watermelon there weekly, and they have a good variety of them.

    Nall’s has 2 weeks left of the weekly summer CSA program before the fall program begins.

    -JAY

  • 14Aug

     

    Cy and I recently had a wonderful meal at The Gryphon, which is under new management and part of the same group with Lost Society. The menu and decor have been updated. They now have a nice raw bar.

    The cocktails we tried were excellent (and well-designed), including:

    • Aphrodite’s Kiss: Absolut Vodka, Absolute Vanilla Vodka, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and lavender syrup.
    • Chimera Flame: Tanteo Jalapeno Tequila, Lime Juice, Cointreau, St. Germaine, simple syrup, Dekuyper Razzmatazz, and a splash of soda.
    • Centaur Kick: Jack Daniel’s Hoey, Dekayper, Triple Sec, and a splash of sour mix.

    Our overall favorite dishes were the:

    • 20 Ounce Dry-Aged Ribeye (although we didn’t enjoy the funky tasting “marrow butter” that was smeared on it). The ribeye is aged 28 days and is served with Chimichurri. I gnawed on the bone! They age their own steaks in a room that you can look into in the back of the restaurant.
    • Prosciutto Wrapped Monkfish, a wonderful combination of texture (the fish was firm and the ham was crispy), saltiness, and flavor.
    • Kale Sale, which had great texture and included Balsamic Dressing, Sunflower Seeds, Currants, Dried Pineapple, and Aged Gouda.
    • Crispy Pork Belly, served with a fried egg, house habanero hot sauce, and cilantro oil.
    • Striped Bass Ceviche, served with lime, orange, grapefruit, cilantro, and red onion.
    • Tuna Tar Tar, served with chili dressing, pickled watermelon rind, and lotus root. Cy was all about this one.
    • Crispy Fried Oysters, with Worcestershire, Smoked Maple Hot Sauce, Cilantro.
    • Desserts (although I leaned towards the Flourless Chocolate Tort, and Cy leaned toward the bread pudding). These are the only two desserts on the menu.

    There is currently a deal for The Gryphon on Living Social. Gilt City has a deal for brunch for 2 there.

    -JAY

    The Gryphon on Urbanspoon

    Disclosure: From time to time, we are given free items, meals, or entry to events.

  • 10Aug

    DC Food Blogger Happy Hour Wednesday was hosted by Wendy Brannen of USApples and myself at Roofers Union in Adams Morgan (in the former space of The Reef). We sampled a variety of Executive Chef Marjorie Meek-Bradley‘s delicious apple themed dishes and a great cocktail Bartender Frank Mills created. Frank named the cocktail “How Do You Like Dem Apples” and provided us with the below recipe (for an individual cocktail):

    -JAY

    Roofers Union on Urbanspoon

  • 01Aug

    Here is your reminder. Event info and the link to RSVP are here.

    August DCFBHH

     

  • 31Jul

    Kebob AngieSeriously, Kebobs, why are you so fancy. I’m sure that you already know but please explain to me. It’s a given fact that no matter what kebob joint you venture, you can expect to pay $10-$16 for a platter depending on what you order.

    And in most instances, it’s worth the cost because of the amount of food you receive. However, why don’t most kebob places have affordable options for the budget conscious foodie?

    Sometimes I just crave a quick morsel of yummy kabob deliciousness but I can’t finish the mountain of food that comes with a $10 platter. I don’t like to waste food so I’m going to feel guilty throwing it away but perhaps I’m not in the mood to lug the food back home to store in my fridge for leftovers either. I just want to eat something mouthwatering at that instant moment and move on.

    Come on! I can’t even come and get a side with some rice for an affordable price. I have a love for chickpeas and rice and sometimes that’s really all I want to eat. But combine the cost of those two sides together, it’s only about a dollar or two cheaper than if you were to get an entire platter with kebob and often times you get jilted the bread!

    I’m pleading you to help me out and not let the kebobs go straight to my thighs because I can’t satisfy my cravings due to lack of portion control.

    Sincerely,

    A lover of food on a stick, ADT (Angie)

    Permalink Filed under: Etc Tags: No Comments
  • 25Jul

    It’s not often I receive a tip from a restaurant, especially as one as venerated as The Prime Rib, but this message appeared in Ye Olde Inbox today, titled “Good News for Meat Lovers!” The text of the message was short and simple :

    N.Y. Times: New analysis of 80 studies, involving 660,000 people,
    found no evidence linking fats in meats, butter, and cheese
    to increased risk of heart disease.

    The N.Y. Times, March 17, 2014

    Well, that IS good news for meat lovers, The Prime Rib! And, it’s obviously good news for all restaurants that cater to meat lovers, like The Prime Rib!

    The email came with this helpful picture of a heart-healthy meal, though the health-food caption is mine:

    Health food for people who hate health food.

    Look at the size of that cut of prime rib! Cooked to a perfect slightly-above rare, and the beef is just wallowing in its own delicious juices…mmmmMMM! And those scalloped potatoes, paired with steamed asparagus and a glorious Napa Valley Cab Sav! *THAT*, my friends, is a meal, and if it’s good for my heart, well then, excuse me if I dump out this box of organic free-range quinoa, or,  in the name of conserving this fragile planet’s resources responsibly,  using it as a rather expensive kitty litter. “Reuse or recycle,” I always say!

    So, The Prime Rib, you have me SOLD! I love meat, I love potatoes, I love red wine, I love asparagus covered in butter and with two little red pepper strips for fun and I sure as hell love highly-reflective silverware! The email came with a handy “Reservations” button to get my table for the next available opening. All I need to do now is get my suit jacket from the dry cleaners (they do have a proper dress code, you know!) and I will be masticating the hell out of that divine prime rib away from all you plebeians!

    However, there’s another hyperlink on that email, this one going to the New York Times’ article. Surely a reasonable person would assume this article on the Old Gray Lady clearly states the benefits of a red-meat-and-buttery-starch diet. THE Paper of Record would have an extremely detailed article citing the numerous ways in which rich, succulent roasted cow crusted in garlic, black peppercorns and sea salt is good for you! Years of research by well-meaning, but obviously-idiotic scientists and nutritionists that concluded that red meat is bad for your heart would be wiped out by this new study, vindicating everything your overweight uncle and all those Texans have been saying for years! “Eat your steak!”

    Except… it doesn’t really go that far. What the new study does state is that while saturated fat isn’t really the enemy, trans fats ARE as bad as we thought, and, this bit referring to low-density lipoproteins, a.k.a. the bad cholesterol, is key :

    The smaller, more artery-clogging particles are increased not by saturated fat, but by sugary foods and an excess of carbohydrates, Dr. Chowdhury said. “It’s the high carbohydrate or sugary diet that should be the focus of dietary guidelines,” he said. “If anything is driving your low-density lipoproteins in a more adverse way, it’s carbohydrates.”

    Wait…you mean, exactly what Dr. Atkins was saying for the last 40 years? Carbs, especially processed sugary and starchy carbs, are really bad? As in, for all these years, it wasn’t the sausage or the cheese or the egg but the humble McMuffin that was really so bad for us on the Sausage Egg McMuffin With Cheese?

    The study also mentions an interesting tidbit about dairy products:

    When the researchers looked at fatty acids in the bloodstream, for example, they found that margaric acid, a saturated fat in milk and dairy products, was associated with lower cardiovascular risk.

    Let the fine citizens of Wisconsin rejoice, for their famous state export is much healthier than expected. Now, there’s some additional research to help demonstrate this – look at this link to how the states rank in the highest percentage of folks with heart disease – there’s Wisconsin, ranked #43, about 5% of the population has heart disease, pretty close to the bottom. Given the state’s relatively high obesity rate as the 15th fattest state in the US, maybe the cheese is saving their lives! Then go back to that heart disease page, and look where Idaho, the potato-making Mecca of `MURICA, ranks – #12! The twelve-highest heart disease rate in the USA! The 19th trimmest state has nearly 7% of its citizens with heart disease. That, Alanis, is irony.

    Maybe if they put some cheese on those potatoes, they’d live longer.

    So, dear The Prime Rib, if you are truly planning on considering yourself a restaurant full of delicious, healthy food, please, do all of us with a family history of heart disease a favor – get rid of those murderous potatoes immediately.

    – Ray

  • 25Jul

    In this day and age where social media and top media lists are becoming a dime a dozen, it’s hard for one to really believe what list is credible, so my challenge this year is to attempt to try as many of the top 100 restaurants listed by the Washingtonian to put to the test their their actual greatness. So here’s the first entry for Washingtonian’s 2014 list. Get ready. Eat. Indulge!

    Duck Breast.

    Duck Breast.

    #7 Blue Duck Tavern1201 24th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20037*

    Two words is all I have to utter for Blue Duck Tavern: Bone Marrow. Those who’ve been following me already know that I’m a huge fanatic of bone marrow, and Blue Duck Tavern hands down has my favorite bone marrow prepared dish. Everything about this appetizer deserves to be in a top 10 list on its own. From the presentation, color, seasoning, and pairing that combine to make this dish absolute perfection.

    The bone marrow was so good that I was tempted to place a second order and cancel my entree. But I had to calm myself down and realize that if their appetizer is this phenomenal, their other food should be just as amazing.

    Two recommended dishes are their 12-Hour Roasted Suckling Pig and Roasted Muscovy Duck Breast. Let’s be honest, when the food came out of the kitchen, I took one look at the dishes served on these cute little silver skillets and thought to myself, “There’s not much to these dishes at all.”

    The protein sat in a sauce in the skillet in what looked to be tiny portions with a little bit of vegetables dolling it up a bit. But little did I know that looks can truly be deceiving. Their Roasted Suckling Pig is no joke, roasted for 12 hours to the point where the meat just melts in your mouth. The jus that the pork sat in has a hint of sweetness. Only thing was that I would have changed would have been to add crunchy green vegetables such as snowpeas to add some refreshing lightness to balance things out so the dish doesn’t seem too heavy.

    The Roasted Muscovy Duck Breast was also a tender mouthwatering piece of heaven. The rhubarb butter added a nice sweetness to the duck meat. But again, it was a heavy protein that needed something refreshing to balance things out. My mistake was ordering the Hand-Cut BDT Triple Fries as a shared side instead of vegetables, but it’s hard to pass up on potatoes fried in duck fat!

    In the end, too full, I couldn’t even bring myself to order their most talked about homemade apple pie for two. Overall, this restaurant definitely deserves it spot in the top 10 on the list. Next time, I’m opting for an entire side of Bone Marrow for myself and ordering some dessert!

    * Restaurants are tiered by Washingtonian rating.

    -ADT (Angie)

    Blue Duck Tavern on Urbanspoon

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