Saturday, February 17, 2007

Dinner at Giao's Aunt and Uncle's House, Orange County, CA

Steak and Chicken
The steak was very good. Flavorful and rare. The chicken was pretty good too.

Chicken and Cobb Salad
The chicken is the same as above and the salad was pretty good too.

Yum. You can never go wrong with steamed prawns. Giao likes to suck the brains out. Alexis gave her brains to Giao.

Very chicken-y.

This was a sort of make-your-own soup with the ingredients laid out for you. The broth had a nice citrusy aftertaste and the basil was nice as well.

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Lunch at C&C Express, Westminster, CA

We ate a food court in a mall in Little Saigon when we got of the plane.

Sui Mai
These sui mai definitely had a Vietnamese flair. We could taste the fish sauce and the sweetness and they also, interestly, contained noodles.

Firm and quite tasty

Duck Foetus
Giao seemed to like this very much. Alexis didn't try it because she didn't have any water around to rinse her mouth if she didn't like it. Apparently, sometimes the foetuses have feathers, but this time, they did not.

Food: 1
Decor: 0
Service: NA (counter)

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Snack at OAK Airport, Oakland, CA

Sausages $5
Edible, but very salty.

Breakfast at Home

A quick breakfast before heading out to LA...

Fried Egg with Parmasean
The new standard...

Fresh Berries

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Friday, February 16, 2007

Dinner at a Friend's House, Fremont, CA

Giao's friend and old roommate is a great cook, and invited us over for dinner. We each ate 30 wontons, but they were sooo good.

Spicy Chicken and Carrots
The peppers made out tongues numb, in a good way. Yum.

Wontons in Spicy Sauce
F. and M. taught Alexis' how to make wontons, which was thoroughly satisfying. These were so delicious. We are pretty sure the sauce was made with sesame oil, soy sauce, cilantro and chilis.

The World's Smallest Fondue Pot
This fondue pot was a flawed design in so many ways. It was far too small. The flame was so close to the bowl that the chocolate burned as soon as it melted. However, it was great for that second between melting and burning.


Lunch at Work, San Francisco, CA

From Manhattan Hub:

Low Carb Cheese Steak
The beef was good, the salad, not so much.

Leftovers from home:

Leftover Shrimp Coconut Curry
Still good the next day.

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Breakfast at Home

Fresh Blueberries, Blackberries, Strawberries and Greek Yogurt

Fried Egg with Parmasean

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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Dinner at Home

Shrimp and Chinese Brocolli Coconut Curry
This recipe was adapted from Vij's cookbook--adapted mainly because I did not have the curry leaves on hand. Also, the curry was to be served with halibut, and I had shrimp and Chinese brocolli instead. It was delicious--creamy, yet tart surprisingly tart from the tomatos. All in all, a great one dish meal.

-1 large onion, pureed
-1 lb tomatos, finely diced
-1 head garlic, minced
-1/4 cup veggie oil
-1 ts curry powder
-1 ts coriander
-1 ts cumin
-1 ts chili pepper
-1 tb salt
-1 can coconut milk
-2 cups water
-1 lb shrimp, peeled
-1 1 lb Chinese brocolli, trimmed and cut into 1" pieces

Heat the oil in a pan. When it is hot add the garlic and stir continuously until the garlic is beginning to color. Add the pureed onion and the curry powder and sautee until onions are golden. Add the tomatos and all of the spices and sautee for 5 minutes. Add the coconut milk and water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and add the Chinese brocolli. Cover and simmer for about 1/2 hour or until a thick sauce has formed. Add the shrimp and cook for 2 or 3 minutes, until the shrimp are just cooked.

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Lunch at Hang Ah Tea Room, San Francisco, CA

We are still looking for a new favorite dim sum place near the financial district and today we decided to try the oldest dim sum place (or so they claim) in SF. It has been around since 1920, but I don't know if that makes it the oldest. In any case, there were not carts at this joint--you had to order everything, but the place was small and there weren't that many customers, so it was ok. The food was better than expected but the decor was strangely garish with neon orange, green and yellow walls and red chairs. It sort of looked like a pre-school on acid. The meal came to about $11 per person.

Sui Mai
Tender with whole shrimp inside. Pretty darn good.

Spareribs with Black Bean Sauce
A decent offering.

Chicken Feet
Pretty abysmal--they don't even look appetizing.

Har Gow
The filler was a bit too mushy.

Foil Wrapped Chicken
A tasty, tender rendition that didn't even stick to the foil.

Food: 1
Decor: 0
Service: 1

No Website
Health Code Violations

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Breakfast at Home

Fried Egg with Parmasean
My new favorite twist on the classic fried egg.


Greek Yogurt
Mixed with a bit of vanilla and yogurt, this is a great dipper for fresh berries.

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Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Dinner at Home

Instead of going out for Valentine's Day, we decided to make a nice dinner at home. Last year we did 3 kinds of fondue, while this year we opted for only 1 fondue course.

Lobster Tails with Garlic White Wine Sauce
These were quite delicious.

-2 lobster tails, split in half
-1/2 stick butter
-1/4 onion, minced
-8 cloves garlic, minced
-1/2 cup dry white wine
-handful chopped parsley

Steam the split lobster tails for 11 minutes in a mixture of water, white wine, whole garlic cloves and onion chunks. In a small saucepan, melt the butter. Add the garlic and onions and simmer until garlic is crunchy and golden. Add the wine and simmer until the sauce reduces by 1/3. Add the parsley at the last minute.

Filet Mignon in Balsamic Red Wine Reduction
We found a recipe for this sauce online and it was good, if a bit sweet.

-2 filets
-salt and pepper to taste
-1/4 cup red wine
-1/4 cup balsamic

Season the filets and set aside. Place the filets in a medium high pan and cook for 1 minutes on each side. Add the red wine and balsamic to the pan, cover, and cook for 2 and 1/2 minutes on each side (for medium rare). Remove from pan and drizzle a bit of sauce on each filet.

Herbed Bread, Cherry Tomatos and Cocktail Onions
For dipping in cheese.

Cheese Fondue
Sharp, creamy and delicious.

-1/2 lb Emantaller cheese, grated
-1/2 lb delicate, cow's milk cheese
-1/2 cup white wine
-1/2 ts ground pepper

Melt all ingredients together.

Blackberries, Strawberries and Blueberries with Chocolate Whipped Cream, Vanilla Whipped Cream and Whiskey Whipped Cream.
3 kinds of berries, 3 kinds of whipped cream. A lovely dessert.

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Lunch from Manhattan Hub and Lightening Foods, San Francisco, CA

From Lightening Foods:

Spicy Chicken Caesar $6
A good deal for a very filling salad.

From Manhattan Hub:

Chicken and Beef Philly Cheesesteak $12
Giao's very big, very cheesy sandwich.

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Breakfast at Home

Bacon, Egg and Cheese Low Carb Breakfast Burrito
Scrambled eggs, bacon and cheese inside a low carb burrito.

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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Dinner at Salt House, San Francisco, CA

We decided to try out Salt House, a newish restaurant we've been meaning to get to. We were pleasantly surprised. The atmosphere was industrial yet warm and the service was friendly. We'll definitely be going back.

Crispy Shrimp with Prosciutto and Green Beans $13
The spicy sauce and green beans were quite nice, but the shrimp themselves left something to be desired. The shrimp, although not overcooked, were more like bad Chinese food shrimp with a greasy flavor.

Pork Belly with Poached Egg and Lentils $12
The pork belly was tender and delicious, and the lentils had a nice chew and were perfectly salted. The egg added a nice balance to the dish.

Poutine $10
We were a big shocked to find this tradional Quebecois comfort food in San Francisco--turns out one of the owners is Canadian. We had to order it. The short rib gravy elevated this pedestrian fare to new levels. It was quite tasty.

Scallops with Kohlrabi and Spinach $27
Although this dish was far too expensive for the portion size and in relation to the other dishes, it was quite good. The scallops were cooked perfectly and the spinach was bright and rich in flavor. The brussel sprouts were a bit too crunchy though.

Food: 2
Decor: 2
Service: 1

Health Code Violations

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Lunch at Work

Rotisserie Chicken, Cheesy Mashed Cauliflower and Spinach Gratin
All leftovers, but still good.

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Breakfast at Home

Bacon and Fried Egg.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Dinner at Home

Chili Rubbed Baby Back Ribs
Click above for our fool-proof recipe.

Spinach Gratin
Leftover from last night--still tasty.

Fresh Blueberries

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Lunch at Work

From Osha Thai:

Garlic Prawns, Chicken Satay, Crispy Tofu Salad, Chicken Katsu, Tofu Coconut Curry
All of it was pretty good for catered in food.

From home:

Rotisserie Chicken with Vinagrette
The chicken was from Costco and the vinagrette is a standar olive oil, dijon and balamic emulsion.

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Breakfast at Home

Bacon and Fried Egg.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Dinner at Home

Baked Trout
A quick, healthy meal. These trouts are stuffed with lemon slices and basil and seasoned with salt and pepper, then they are baked for about 20 minutes on 375.

Spinach Gratin
A nice, unhealthy accompaniment to baked fish.

-2 lbs spinach
-1/2 onion, diced
-5 cloves garlic, minced
-1 1/2 cup grated cheese
-1/4 ts nutmeg
-salt and pepper to taste

Blanch the spinach and squeeze out as much water as possible. Chop and put in a large mixing bowl. Sautee the onions and garlic in a bit of olive oil until carmelized. Put into the bowl with the spinach. Add the nutmeg, salt, pepper and 1 cup of the grated cheese to the bowl and mix thoroughly. Put the mixture in a greased casserole and sprinkle on the rest of the cheese on top. Cover with foil and bake on 375 for about 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake until cheese is golden and bubbly.

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Snack at Costco, San Francisco, CA

Hot Dog $1.50
The best deal around.

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Breakfast at Home

Fried Egg with Parmasean
Simple and tasty.

Epoisse and a semi-soft sheep's milk cheese from the Cheeseboard Collective and fresh apple slices.

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