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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Bike ride, lunch at Anthony's and a chicken on a dog

Fish poboy slider from Anthony's. At two to an order with fries (or coleslaw) these will fill you!

The view from the dining area at Anthony's. You see lots of sailboats.

The lobby at Anthony's. This place is a San Diego institution.

Dad and Wanda were getting their drink on before lunch.

Yours truly after a bike ride to Carlsbad beach.

This morning Dad and I took his and Saykham's bikes to Carlsbad beach. He said the round trip is 5-7 miles and it is quite hilly. He gave me snaps for making it all the way there and back without stopping. It was our 2nd bike ride of this trip and I've really enjoyed biking, so I might have to visit The Bike Barn when I get home and see if they have any used bikes in my price range.

Wanda suggested we have lunch today at Anthony's at the Embarcadero in San Diego. It sounded good to us all, so off we went. When we got there, it was pretty busy in the parking area, so Wanda went in to get a table and we waited while a nice family got their kids buckled in their car seats and a nice guy in a truck behind us waited while we waited. Needless to say, eventually we got parked (no meter today since it was Sunday) and headed for the restaurant. We found Wanda sitting at the bar and she was drinking a chardonnay and there were two fruity drinks also there, waiting for us. I thought they might be mai-tai's (since Dad and I enjoy the rum at times) but they turned out to be whiskey sours. I have never tried one before, and it was quite tasty, very puckery, and refreshing.

We had a great meal at Anthony's. Their bread is very crusty and tasty, it comes with a dried tomato butter and we ordered fried squid. They don't serve it with cocktail sauce like they used to but rather some type of creamy dipping sauce and then a salsa. The batter they use is very tasty, there must be some spices in it and it is very flaky. The squid was very fresh.

Dad opted for the crab cakes benedict which looked tasty and Wanda had the fish po-boy sliders and her order came with cole slaw (or you can get fries). I had a petite shrimp louie salad with italian dressing instead of the louis dressing (I'm not into creamy dressings) and the salad was very fresh as were the shrimp. A very delicious lunch, indeed!

Afterwards we drove to Old Town and we had ice cream at Cold Stone. I am not a huge fan but we needed something sweet to round out the meal. I had a strawberry shake that was yummy and Wanda had a chocolate ice cream cone with marshmellows and nuts. Dad had a cake batter ice cream with chocolate shavings and apples which sounded delicious.

When we finished our ice cream, Wanda and I were waiting for Dad across the street when he came with the car and we ran into two nice men who had two friendly doggies. One of them looked like a helper dog, it had a red vest and the other doggie looked very sweet and on top of it was a chicken. I kid you not! The chicken was asleep on top of a resting doggie. It was one of the most amazing things I have ever seen. Unfortunately I did not take a picture, so you'll have to take my word for it.

Tomorrow it's time to head back to Phoenix. First we will stop at Carlsbad Danish Bakery, because we haven't gone there yet, and Jen will poke me (via facebook) if I don't go there while I'm in town. I wouldn't miss it. They have the most flaky yummy danish with chunky fruit. Mmmmmm. I might have to get a shirt since it was just announced they are selling shirts. Whoohoo!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Lunch at The Daily News Cafe and Carlsbad beach

The kitchen wench (right) and sister Fran at Carlsbad beach.

Dad and Fran.

Yummy pastries and muffins greet you at The Daily News Cafe.

We are lookers!

Dad is laughing about something in this picture. Maybe it was about a joke that he told?

Fran, my Dad and I had lunch today at The Daily News Cafe. It's close to Carlsbad beach (across the street) and they have yummy sandwiches, salads and breakfast.

I had a french dip with a side of pasta salad that was very tasty and Fran had a chicken sandwich with bacon. The bacon looked very crispy and I was tempted to steal a slice when she wasn't looking. Dad had cinnamon french toast that in retrospect maybe I should have ordered since it comes with an enormous side of fresh fruit like strawberries, bananas and melon.

We sat outside which was lovely, and a friendly patron took our picture together. I think we make quite a group.

Afterwards we strolled on the beach and the weather was very warm. The ocean was quite chilly which helped and I wished we had brought our frisbee and maybe our bathing suits too!

The Daily News Cafe 3001-A Carlsbad Blvd. Carlsbad, CA. 92008

A few more pictures from the street fair/farmers market in Vista, CA

I think these are so cute. Turtles!

Pretty homemade pottery. Great colors.

Painted pumpkins...

Rebecca, the sari lady, has some really amazing patterns.

The bread smelled amazing. These guys also had rolls, baguettes and other yummies.

Street Fair/Farmer's Market in Vista, CA, continued

Heirloom tomatoes. The vendor said the reddish ones are more sweet.

Fejoias (spelling) taste like a kiwi but are without the fuzz on the outside.

The empanadas smelled delicious...

These carrots looked like they just came from the ground. So fresh!

I was deciding which mask to get for Halloween.

I wanted to share some more pictures from this street fair and farmers market since there were so many great vendors. It is every Saturday in Vista. A great place to visit if you are in the area.

Street Fair/Farmer's Market in Vista, CA

Delicious salamis from Knights Salumi

How do I look in a sari?

The fused glass lady had some beautiful plates and other artwork.

Dad and Saykham checking out produce.

Bitter melons look like small wrinkled cucumbers.

I went to a street fair and farmers market today in Vista, California, while visiting my Dad. I was accompanied by my Dad and the lovely Saykham, who made us a wonderful lasagna dinner last night along with a delicious fresh romaine lettuce salad that had other veggies along with kidney beans and apples. I know, sounds like a funny combination, but it works! We also had crusty La Brea french bread and proseco from Trader Joe's (leftover from Wanda's birthday - thanks for sharing, Wanda).

The street fair was really fun, there is some amazing artwork and garments. The fused glass lady had this plate with sandpipers on it that I fell in love with and then she had other plates, one with a bird in a tree and others with turtles. So cute! Then I met Rebecca, the sari lady. My Dad had purchased a sari for me and she showed me different ways to wrap and wear it. It's very pretty.

The farmers market had all kinds of fruit/veg vendors and people making delicious eats like empanadas and there were little salamis for sale from the nice people at Knight's Salumi in San Diego.

It was nice to be outside in the cool weather, with family.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Oregano chicken and sweet potato "fries"

These sweet potato fries are to die for.

Just slice your sweet potato in "rounds" and place on a cookie sheet with tin foil.
Don't forget the olive oil!

The oregano chicken was nice and browned tonight.

Such a simple dish to put together.
Just place in your pan with Italian spices.

Oregano chicken is a familiar dinner or lunch on my table, I make it at least once a week. Just sprinkle Italian seasoning on your chicken and bake it at 400 degrees for 1 hour. I baste it three times during the cooking process. Today I gave it an extra 10 minutes because it was just a tiny bit frozen when I put it in the oven.

The sweet potato fries are so delicious! They get nicely carmelized in the same 400 degree oven, I bake them for 20 minutes and turn them for another 5 minutes. I sprinkled Italian seasoning on these too and coated them liberally with olive oil before baking. Then when they came out I hit them with a little kosher salt. These remind me of bar food, without the frying. No guilt!

Happy eating.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Food/gadgets/planning for San Diego trip

If all goes well this month, and I hope it does, I'll be heading to San Diego for a few days with Wanda and my little sister. I will be a passenger, and I plan to properly reward my partners in travel procurement with date shakes from Dateland. I prefer the cactus one, though. It is not too sweet and very refreshing on a hot day when one is on the road.

So today I'm thinking about what I need to bring on my trip. So far this is the short list:
2 lemon lemon loaf cakes (I already told my Dad about them)
espresso maker
coffee (Pajaro from Trader Joe's)
coffee grinder

My Dad was telling me today that my Mom used to make a lemon cake with chocolate icing. That sounds really good. Mmmmmmmmmm.

I digress.

When we get to Carlsbad I told my Dad we'll stock up on goodies and that probably means a trip to Trader Joe's for puttanesca sauce and spaghetti (and wine of course). I also told him I'll treat him to a great meal somewhere of his choice if the gods of finance are with me on this trip. Osteria Romantica in La Jolla sounds like just the ticket, they make this delicious dish with pasta and Italian sausage in a chunky tomato sauce with green bell peppers, red peppers and onions. Wow, it is so so so good. And they have yummy tiramisu and espresso also. Frequently you see the owner behind the bar, and I think that is a good sign, when you see the owner on the premises. That means there is quality control, very important to this kitchen wench.

There is a place in Carlsbad called Papagayo which I would like to try also, Dad said they make a beet salad, and I am very fond of beets. The old standbys for us include Hernandez Hideaway for yummy Mexican food (although last time I over did it on the margaritas and had to pay for it the next day) and we also like Anthony's for fish. They make this red snapper dish with an artichoke and mushroom sauce that is to die for. Last but not least, we'll go to Carlsbad Danish Bakery. Cinnamon, cherry and apple danish! Oh my!!

There's a lot to look forward to when I visit my Dad. Hopefully we'll play some frisbee on the beach and stick our toes in the water. He really enjoys the ocean, and I am so excited to spend some quality time with him.

Happy days.

Lemon lemon loaf - from

Be still my heart!

Einstein's Bagels used to make a lemon currant scone and ever since they stopped making them I have been looking for a sweet that would put the "lemon" back in my diet. This lemon lemon loaf adapted from is going to be just the ticket, I think.

You need:
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar (I like Zulka moreno for this)
1/8 cup fresh lemon juice
1/8 cup grated lemon zest (from about 2 lemons)
1/4 cup sour cream
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Cream your butter and add the sugar. Cream again and add eggs. Beat until smooth, then add your sour cream, lemon juice, zest and vanilla. Beat again until smooth. Then add your dry ingredients and beat a final time.

Turn your batter out into a buttered loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 325 and bake for another 30-35 minutes until your toothpick comes out clean.

Let your cake cool for 15 minutes before turning it onto a plate or baking rack.

There is an optional glaze for this cake that is 1 cup confectioners sugar and 2-3 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice.

It occurs to me that blueberries would be good in this, or in the spirit of Einstein's Bagels scones (R.I.P.), you could add currants.

This came out with a nice brownish crust. I am going to make the glaze and take some over to my Mom and brother today, since they treated me to a delicious lunch of homemade pizza yesterday.

Happy baking!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Pizza invite

I got a text from my brother today saying that him and my Mom were making pizza, and did I want to come over. Did I!

When I arrived they had everything prepped; the dough was rising in the oven, already stretched out in the pans and all of the veggies had been cut. My brother prepared the pies and then my Mom baked them in a 450 degree oven for what seemed like 20-25 minutes. She switched the pies during cooking time to get them to an even brownness.

They made the sauce from scratch and it had just the right amount of Italian spices and chopped garlic. The dough recipe is from the Fanny Farmer cookbook for French bread. Our pies had pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, tomato sauce, green bell pepper, black olives, white onion and sprinkle cheese on top.

A major feast and a welcome invite! Make some today for your family.

George & Dragon

Jason treated us to an early dinner last night at the G & D. Ever since I (he will say it was him) came up with this brilliant idea to go to the George for dinner last week, we have been salivating. We were going to treat ourselves after spending a day at defensive driving school, but that is another story. He was telling me last night that my brother introduced him to it, and he has been a fan ever since. I went there with friends for the first time in the late 90's, I think it was, and remember it as a smoke-filled bar/restaurant that had amazing beers on tap and great food. It is the same, except for the smoking.

We both had the fish and chips with peas and shared an appetizer of fried zucchini. Jason said it was some of the best fried zucchini he has ever had. It looked sort of like fried mozzarella cheese, except when you bit into it, it was obvious that it was the vegetable and not from the milk group.

The fish that they serve at the G & D has a yummy batter, it is not too heavy, very crispy, not oversalted, and the quality of the fish is very good. Flaky, but it does not fall apart too easily. They bring malt vinegar when you order the fish and chips, which we both enjoy a lot. And their fries are huge, and perfectly fried. The Black and Tans aren't bad, either. I had two. They have a lot of beers on tap, which I like.

You can also get fish & chips at the Bluewater Grill on Camelback Road, but that is a different animal, if you will. A great environment with super high quality food, but missing the soccer jerseys that you would see at the G & D. (Formerly known as the Fish Market). Bluewater Grille has chewy sourdough bread that you can get to go, which is nice if you are cooking in but don't want to go to the trouble of baking your own bread (who does, nowadays?).

I was telling Jason that the next time we are in Tempe, we have to go to the Cornish Pasty Co., they make meat pies stuffed full with chicken, beef, lamb or veggies, however you like. I guess since we were doing the English thing last night, I thought of this place as well.

I don't know the title of the song, but this lyric comes to mind when I think of food.
"I get ideas...I get ideas..."

In conclusion: head over to the G & D for delicious English food. Their bangers & mash are a must, too!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

On The Grill

My aunt and I went to On The Grill today for lunch. It's a place that occupies a former hog dog joint, I think it was called "Chicago Dawgz" or something like that. It's a little tucked away, next to the Panda Express in a strip mall at 39th Street and Thomas.

We originally were going to go to The Grind at 40th Street and Camelback but then I looked at the menu and it is a little pricey for us for lunch. The burgers and other sandwiches (chicken and pork) do look delicious though, with lots of fancy condiments like sun dried tomatoes and candied jalapeƱos, so I will be going, just not today. (If any benefactors out there want to invite me, I am up for the occasion!) They do have a full bar with many beers on tap and in the bottle. They also make fancy cocktails like a Manhattan, which I have never tried, but have always wanted to.

At On The Grill, my aunt had a 1/2 pound burger and she said it was delicious, it could have been more "medium" for her taste but otherwise she liked it. There were lots of condiments on top: onions, pickles, tomatoes and lettuce; she added catsup and mustard.

We shared a large basket of crispy fries that we could not possibly finish.

I had a sonoran hot dog, it comes with mayo (I got mine without), beans, bacon, jalapeƱo, tomatoes, and mustard. With the peppers I thought it would be spicier. The beans added a nice touch, and the dog was perfectly charred.

They have shakes on their menu and root beef floats too, which we did not try, but the idea of either one sounds great to me.

My aunt pronounced that we'll be going back to try their Italian beef sandwiches and I don't ever argue with my aunt. Especially when it comes to food.

Go check this place out for tasty eats at lunch!

This place also looks great, more "gourmet" style. But don't forget your wallet.

Yummy croissants

AJ's Fine Foods is the place to go if you want a tasty croissant. I went over there this morning and picked up a chocolate one, it was delicious. The chocolate is almost a little gritty in texture and it occurs to me it would work well as an empanada filling.

I will have to tell the nice folks at La Purisima bakery about this idea. They have great Mexican pastries, burritos, tamales and there is a little area where you can sit and enjoy your goodies.

This morning I was walking along 36th St. near Campbell when a sweet older fluffy yellow labrador doggie came up to me and he was very excited. It was clear he wanted to show me something, so obediently, I followed. We walked down his neighborhood street (presumably) where he picked up a dead bird and shuffled off to the front yard of his home and began to eat it, with gusto.

I enjoyed my chocolate croissant this morning with the same enthusiasm.

La Purisima Bakery 2318 East Indian School Road
Phoenix, AZ 85016-6260
(602) 840-4725