Saturday, July 31, 2010

Thai Market

There are so many Thai restaurants in New York that I could probably eat at a different one every day of the week.  Thai Market is one of these great restaurants.  It offers an $8 lunch special with choice of an appetizer and entree.

I met Mr. G there after a failed attempt at bike riding.  We both started with the curry puff.

It was pretty good.  Standard fare though a little greasy and def not as plump as the ones from Land.

Mr. G ordered Chicken Ginger.

It didn't look particularly appetizing but apparently tasted good.  The chicken was coated in ginger, but there were only 6 pieces in the dish.

I asked for Pad Kee Mao.

Looks like drunken noodle to me! Flat rice noodle, chicken, thai basil, bird's eye chili and bok choi.  It tasted pretty good but they definitely held back on the chicken.  It was spicy and bold, but not necessarily better than other Thai places.

The best part of Thai Market is the outdoor seating on Amsterdam. It's a colorful neighborhood and you get to observe the people and traffic while enjoying your $8 meal.

Hungry yet?

Thai Market on Urbanspoon

Friday, July 30, 2010

Sweet Revenge

The day was filled with a lot of eating as we said goodbye to our summer associates and another employee who is on his way to law school.  Nothing was particularly delicious or new so I won't bore you with those details.  Mr. G and I did go to a fantastic new (to us) spot though.

Sweet Revenge.  A wonderful little dessert spot.  The great part about it is that it's open all day long and late into the night.  So you can pick up a muffin for breakfast then go back late at night to relax after a long day.

The menu is filled with all sorts of goodies.  Mr. G and I stuck to two items.

That beauty is the Crimson & Creme.  A raspberry red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting.  Delicious.  The cake is not too rich and is perfectly sweetened when combined with the frosting.

The Cinnamon Apple Cake was fantastic! It's the perfect thing for someone looking for a sweet yet filling treat.  YUM.

Sweet Revenge is just what New York needs.  A place to lounge with sweet treats, nice music and a friendly staff.  If this was in my neighborhood, I would go at least 3 times a week.

Hungry yet?

Sweet Revenge on Urbanspoon

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Pop Burger

This is it.  The summer is on its way out.  So of course we need to celebrate with the summer associates with an associates night out!  The associates committee planned a fun filled after work celebration at Pop Burger. (Turn your speakers down, the website has some tunes)  We went to the location on 58th between 5th and Madison.  I grumbled the entire walk over and decided it would be worth it because I would be rewarded with delicious eats.

Walking into Pop Burger is a little jarring.  Bright lights, one loooong slim countertop in the middle.  Really does look like ye olde burger joint.  When you go upstairs though, that's where the fun begins.  Low lighting, plush couches and awkwardly low high backed chairs.  Our reserved space was on the 2nd floor where the DJ was spinning some classics but with different beats.  Throws you off a little, but it was quite good.

Anyway, on to the food.  I scoured the menu quickly and we all decided on a game plan.  Order anything you're gonna eat!  My kind of party :-)

We received some cheeseburgers, fries and onion rings first.

The fries were delicious, but it was so dark in there I couldn't get the perfect photograph.  I was told the cheeseburgers were overdone.  I had to run downstairs to see my younger brother so the next set of photographs is courtesy of Mr. not that one.  While I was gone, the food came out in rapid succession.

The chicken spring rolls didn't photograph too well, and they also didn't taste great.  Too much spring and not enough chicken in that roll.

The shrimp roll on the other hand was amazing.  The shrimp filled the length of that roll.  I was in heaven!

Individual lobster nachos with guacamole was also pretty good.  I wish they had done more with it, but I suppose better to have lots of lobster than not...unlike lunch today!

Mozzarella sticks were JUMBO.  I had to split it with someone because I couldn't imagine getting through all that cheese.  It was pretty good and not offensively greasy.

I missed the name of this fabulous dish, but it was INCREDIBLE.  Seared Ahi Tuna, possibly sesame crusted.  I would go to dinner at Pop Burger, just to order this dish.  Yummers!

Pop Burger is a fun atmosphere for an after work event.  The lighting is a little low and the music gets louder after 7:30, but it's definitely worth hanging out on the 2nd floor for a few hours.  The food is delicious and when someone else is picking up the tab, it tastes even better!

Hungry yet?

Pop Burger on Urbanspoon

Lobster-Lite Lunch

Lunch meetings are great for so many reasons.  This particular meeting is always fabulous because Mr. K places incredible orders.  When I received the menu for today's meeting, I was thrilled!  Instead of lobster rolls, we were getting lobster burritos with a side of rice and couscous.  oh boy!  

The spread was VERY deceiving.  The only reason there are that many rolls is because you had to hunt to find the lobster pieces.  These were essentially vegetable rolls, albeit very delicious vegetables, sprinkled with lobster.  I was incredibly disappointed.  Shame on you Zaro's for fooling us with your lobster-lite vegetable burritos.

At least the rice was delicious.  I added some salsa on the side and filled myself up on rice.  But of course I saved a little room for cake.

YUM! This chocolate heaven cake was very dense but also incredibly good.  

After struggling to find what amounted to less than mouthful of lobster, I was lucky to find lots of rice to stuff myself.  Of course the cake helped too.

Hungry yet? 

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Pre-packaged goodness

While I was contemplating what I would eat for dinner, Y-squared sent me this image.

Ahhhh few things put a smile on my face the way plantain sizzling and turning a nice golden brown does.  Y-squared wanted to make sure all was well and let me know that he had "a headache from eating."  Yea, I know.  Not cool.  I quickly made my way to the grocery store and decided on a very simple Rice & Chicken with a side of plantains.  I spent $6.51 which is less than I usually spend on lunch at work, on those rare occasions when I end up buying my lunch.

I got home with my 5 pack of chicken drumsticks and thighs, 3 plantains and 1 box of Goya yellow rice.  I brought out  a large pot added a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and tossed in the chicken.

I must have been really hungry because I forgot to add salt and pepper.  Sadly I didn't realize until after the food was done.  After letting the chicken cook for 5 - 7 minutes and turning it when necessary, I added 1 1/2 cups of water and brought it to a boil.  Next I added the packet of rice and after it boiled I lowered the heat and covered the pot so it could simmer.

After 15 minutes, I added fresh chopped broccoli and peas & carrots.

I love colorful dishes.  Meanwhile, I fried one of the 3 plantains.  After letting the rice simmer until the water evaporated, it was time to eat.

Yup that's right $6.51 gets you all of that :-) Actually, it's more because there are still two plantains waiting for me. I don't know if I'll have time to cook again this week, but at least I have enough to eat at home a few more times.

Hungry yet?

Sosa Borella

A few years ago when I was a summer associate, I went to this fabulous restaurant several times.  My coworkers probably thought I only liked to eat pasta and tiramisu because whenever it was up to me, Sosa Borella (their website is a little spotty so I linked to menupages) was the place to go.  I decided to relive that experience today for my final lunch with the summer associates.

Luckily, the food was just as I remembered it. The bread was a little warm and served with a basil and olive oil sauce.  Fantastic.

 I ordered my favorite Fresh Fettucini with broccoli and shrimp in a spicy plum tomato sauce.

Simply divine.  Unlike the pasta at so many other restaurants, Sosa Borella's is fresh.  You can definitely taste the difference!  The shrimp was rather large and the broccoli was cooked just right, a little crunchy just perfect.

I'm sad to report our service was not stellar.  I think there was only one server covering the entire floor so I do feel for him, but they should know better and ask another person to assist.  We ordered sweet potato fries to start, but he did not bring them until later.

While they didn't look great, they tasted terrific.  If you're ever in midtown looking for some delicious fresh Italian food, GO TO SOSA BORELLA.  They bill themselves as more than just Italian, but I stick to the same dish so I wouldn't know.  We didn't get a chance to order dessert, but I do remember their Tiramisu was fabulous.  I will likely go back sometime soon to try it out again and linger on the fond memories from the summer of 2006.  I also noticed that their brunch menu looks pretty good.

Hungry yet?

Sosa Borella on Urbanspoon

Monday, July 26, 2010

Scallops and more!

t's been a while since I've seen Ms. H. Life as a summer associate has put her out of reach for most of this summer.  Luckily we were able to get together for some cheese, dinner and dessert.

While waiting for Ms. H's arrival, I baked some of my favorite Betty Crocker cookies.

They are so delicious and require very little work.

And they come out golden brown and delicious!

Ms. H arrived with some Bauerkase Cheese imported from Austria.  Fancy stuff and it tasted pretty good.

The main course was Jumbo Sea Scallops that I purchased from Whole Foods.  It was my first time making scallops and I was quite nervous.  I added salt and pepper to both sides then placed them in a large pan with olive oil.

The key to scallops, now that I'm an expert, is to make sure you don't turn them over until they are well seared.  In this case that meant 3 minutes.

Look at that color!! I cooked it the same way on the other side and BAM, look what we have here.

I served the Scallops over a bed of string beans.  They were much better than the ones I ate at The Palm last week.  I boiled them for 3 -5 minutes then added them to the same pan I cooked the Scallops in which already had garlic and onions, butter and a splash of lemon juice.  I added salt, black pepper and red pepper.

Ms. H loved them so I think they were a success.

Like most seafood, scallops are pretty easy to make.  I'm feeling really good that I was able to make this meal.  It's probably time I up my cooking game to some more complex recipes.  Any suggestions let me know!

Hungry yet?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Pipa: tapas y mas

Although I was in the office for several hours today, I was able to get by because I knew at 10pm I would be able to reunite with Don Draper and the gang.  My 10pm plans were derailed when I remembered that earlier in the day Mr. G and I agreed to go to dinner with the elder Mr. G and his Ms. S.  I spent a few minutes salivating over the menu for Pipa and realized it would be well worth it. (Not to mention that DVR is a lifesaver!)
We arrived at Pipa for our 8:30 reservation and decided to sit indoors.  The restaurant is located in a warehouse style space with an open kitchen and TONS of chandeliers, which apparently are for sale!  There was a live band playing and the music wasn't offensively loud.  We settled into our seats and made some decisions about what we would like to eat.
In no particular order, here it goes...
These Bolas de Queso Croquetas were nay the best.  Everyone else at the table loved them, but fried balls of goat cheese with white wine dipping sauce didn't really do it for me.  I tried it though, which is better than my usual habit of turning my nose up at anything that looks like I may not like it.
The Cangrejo Coca got rave reviews from most of the table.  I mean what's not to love about Catalan Flat Bread topped with crab meat, goat cheese, tomato, green & red bell peppers, jalapeno and mustard oil.  I was surprised that the goat cheese worked so well as a way to hold together the ingredients.
Gambas al Ajillo was delightful as always.  What's not to love about sauteed Ecuadorian shrimp with garlic and chilies.  And of course I couldn't help myself and dipped the bread in the sauce.
Crispy Calamari was lightly floured but crispy and topped with the most amazing smoked paprika aioli that I've ever encountered. 
The Scallops a la Plancha was heavenly.  Diver scallops, sauteed spinach with manchego cheese sauce and caramelized onions.  Woweeee!
Stuffed Piquillos were also really good. Piquillo peppers stuffed with crab meat and shrimp covered in a piquillo aioli.  

The table also ordered Beef Meatballs which were served in sofrito sauce with green pepper demi-glaze, creme fraiche and tomato.  Ms. S remarked that it was like eating meatballs in pico de gallo.

Our server was definitely not on point. He forgot all about our Gambas then tried to play it off.  We did order some Patatas Bravas while we were waiting though and those sliced crisp potatoes with brava aioli were just what I needed to fill me up.
And by fill me up I mean transition to dessert!!
We ordered the Crema Catalana which was vanilla custard with caramelized brown sugar (read: creme brulee) and Bomba de Chocolate a delectable milk chocolate shell, hazelnut tuille and chocolate, vanilla and hazelnut sauces.  

I have GOT to learn how to make hazelnut desserts.
Pipa was a glorious dining experience and the company was fabulous!  I definitely recommend it if you're looking for a great Tapas (y mas) place.  Although be forewarned our server was definitely not on point.  I mean seriously, who brings you spoons for dessert AFTER you already ate dessert!!
Hungry yet?

Pipa on Urbanspoon

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Mr. G Makes Dinner

After my day in Jersey, I called Mr. G while he was in the grocery store and he agreed to buy a few ingredients and make dinner for us.  Oh boy! I was very excited but waited a while to get to his place because I didn't want to disturb the chef.  When I walked into his mid rise building, I could smell the deliciousness at the front door.  He prepared a multi-course meal that reminded me just how lucky I am.
To start, Mr. G served some fresh mango slices as an appetizer.  I was happy to have something light and cool to start with because I was still recovering from the 100+ degree day.
Next up he whipped out the Collard Greens with mussels!!
I was pleasantly surprised by this dish.  The mussels were married to the greens and it tasted so good that I ate an entree sized portion.  After taking a short eating break, I had enough room for the main course.
Mr. G served Rotini with fresh peppers and a sweet tomato sauce with chicken.
Mmm Mmm Mmm!! Mr. G can definitely throw down.  I was especially happy with the mussels because I truly did not expect it to taste as good as it did.

Oh and did I mention he made Garlic Bread?!

Hungry yet?