Archive for April, 2011

Apr 22

Omaha Steaks Filet Mignon with Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Yesterday we decided to have Roasted Brussels Sprouts for dinner, so it was time to take our Omaha Steaks Filet Mignon out of the freezer! I got the Roasted Brussels Sprouts recipe on Food Network, it sounded simple and had a good rating. I changed the recipe just a bit by mixing in some Mushroom and Black Truffle Sauce my sister bought me while she was on her Europe trip, this was from her Italy visit. Truffle always smell sooo damn good!  The Omaha Steaks Filet Mignon was extremely tender, we really enjoyed it! The Roasted Brussels Sprouts were perfectly crisped on the outside and cooked evenly inside, the Mushroom and Black Truffle Sauce definitely enhanced the flavors! I also sprinkled some Parmesan cheese on top.

We still have more Filet Mignon, will save that for another dinner! The next time I make Brussels Sprouts, I will use the same recipe but cut them in halves, I love crispy food!

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Apr 19

Happy One Year to Myself!

Today is the 1 year anniversary for CookwithEva! I can’t believe that a year ago, I was just telling my hubby that I was interested in creating a food blog, with about a day of thinking and wanting a new fun change in my life away from my real job, I just did it! Why not, I had nothing to lose. And really, all I had to do was keep eating, cooking and photographing my food models, my favorite hobbies!

I wasn’t sure if anyone was going to read it, I wasn’t sure if anyone was going to comment, and I didn’t know what an impact social media could be. Starting this blog made me realize how much food affects everyone in such a satisfying way, putting a smile on people’s faces as they are placed on the table to be served.  Like how sports make conversations for men and how Hollywood entertainment makes conversations for women, food is universal and creates discussions for everyone!

During the year, I was very fortunate and had the opportunity to find my LOVE of FOOD in Japan, Guangzhou, Singapore and Hong Kong, and of course I did so at home too! I hope that this upcoming year brings me to many more mouth watering eateries!

I am happy to be sharing my mom’s recipes, happy to be sharing my food thoughts, happy to be sharing food photos and really happy to hear everyone’s opinions and food recommendations!  Everyone wants to leave a mark during their lifetime, this is my mark!

If you are reading this, THANK YOU for being a fan!  Happy Eating and Cooking!

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Apr 17

Frozen White Castle, Yes, I’ll Eat That

My sister gave us some frozen White Castle, we haven’t had White Castle since our trip to New York, so it’s been a few years! My hubby is from New York and going to White Castle was always a treat for him. So how good were the frozen ones? These little sliders were actually pretty damn good! Popped them into the microwave for a minute and ta-da…we found White Castle at home, right in our freezer!

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Apr 15

Molinari Delicatessen’s Fresh Ravioli

This week my boss came into my office at the end of the day to give me something. Just when it hit 4:45pm and all I kept thinking about was what to have for dinner, he came in and gave me a box of fresh ravioli from Molinari Delicatessen! YES, my dinner was set! It’s been a while since I’ve visited this deli for their scrumptious sandwiches! I couldn’t wait to try their fresh ravioli! Luckily I always have cans of tomatoes, fresh onions and fresh garlic at home! When I opened the box, I didn’t know what to expect, but they were soft doughy ravioli, all connected like a puzzle. I made the sauce, boiled the ravioli and dinner was served! When my hubby looked at the ravioli, he was wondering how it was going to fill him up, but after eating it, he realized how satisfying it was!  We never really buy ravioli, but after trying these from Molinari Delicatessen, we definitely want to stop by for more! They were small, fresh and I loved the meat and hint of cheesy taste! Good Stuff!

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Apr 11

A Visit to Half Moon Bay, Sam’s Chowder House & Princeton Seafood Company

We did a family trip to Half Moon Bay and decided to go to Sam’s Chowder House. I’ve been here in the past and I didn’t love it, but they do have great oceanfront views! We actually wanted to go to Princeton Seafood Company but they are located at the Pillar Point Harbor and do not offer views. Our main goal was for my mom to get some delicious clam chowder! So we went to both locations for clam chowder and had a comparison!

It was a Saturday and when we got to Sam’s Chowder House it was full, we had the options to sit near the bar on bar stools , sit outdoors or wait for an hour! At first we were going to sit indoors since it was freezing, but when we walked outside while they were setting up our table at the bar area, we realized it was actually warm when the sun shined and the restaurant was blocking the cold wind, so we ended up outside instead. There are actually heaters outside, we weren’t in that area but the sun definitely helped!

We were supposed to come here for a snack only since we wanted to make a stop at the Princeton Seafood Company, but we ordered more than expected, everything on the menu sounded good! Of course we ordered everything to be served family style so that we could try a bit of everything.  We ordered 2 bowls of New England Clam Chowder, 1 bowl of Manhattan Clam Chowder, the Fried Pacific Oysters, the Crispy Polenta Fries, Sam’s Crab Louis and 2 Maine Lobster Rolls!

We didn’t know how big the bowls were going to be, but when we got them, we realized they were HUGE! The New England Clam Chowder with little neck clams, Yukon gold potatoes, smoked bacon and cream was good, you can definitely taste the cream! I thought the tomato-based Manhattan Clam Chowder was too salty. The plump Fried Pacific Oysters were juicy and fresh, my mom wanted this and really enjoyed it! The Crispy Polenta Fries, which was my sister’s pick, was impressive and I really liked the light cheesy flavor. I loved the combination of the Sam’s Crab Louis,  served with lots of fresh dungeness crab, crunchy Fuji apple, iceberg lettuce, cucumber, hard cooked egg and Louis dressing! It was a refreshing salad  since we had a lot of fried dishes! And drum rolls please…..the Maine Lobster Roll with butter on a toasted bun served with chips and coleslaw, well… it was topped and covered with buttery lobster on the toasty buttery bun! Okay, I think that if I never tried the lobster roll in New York at Pearl Oyster Bar, then I wouldn’t have known how good a lobster roll can possibly be.  Maybe I’ve been too hard on the lobster roll at Sam’s Chowder House, maybe I shouldn’t compare, and maybe Sam’s is considered the more contemporary Californian way of serving a lobster roll. I am not saying that their lobster roll is bad, but what the hell happened to the mayonnaise?!  Overall, if you love lobster, you will enjoy it!  I would also like to add that from my understanding, the cole slaw was very good too.  I’m not a fan, but everyone else mentioned that it was one of the best cole slaw they’ve ever had.

After this so called snack, we went to the Pillar Point Harbor, not to eat right away, but to walk off what we ate so that we could make room for our next snack. We walked around, saw fisherman’s selling on their boats, there were crabs and humongous halibuts!  After strolling around, it was time for some food at the Princeton Seafood Company. They actually have an outside window to the restaurant where they sell quick to go items, they also have a few picnic tables with benches for seating. We ordered a bowl of Clam Chowder and Deep Fried Clam Strips served with fries!  Okay, I like the Clam Chowder here, it is less creamy, but less cream means more clammy seafood flavors! The Deep Fried Clam Strips were not bad, but the clams were so tiny (which is usually the case with this fried goodness), it’s one of those fried items where you can taste the flavors of a clam but just can’t see it!

It was a great day in the Half Moon Bay, we accomplished what we wanted, which was to eat our seafood hearts out!

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Apr 09

Contemporary Italian at Beretta

It’s really rare that we eat in the Mission District, but a friend recommended dinner at Beretta. They don’t normally take reservations, but for a party of more than 6, they do! I made reservations for a Friday night a few days prior,  they said they were extremely busy,  and  only able to seat us downstairs. Also keep in mind that the area is really busy and parking may take some time, so take your hunger and your patience with you to Beretta.

Once you get inside, you will enter the upstairs and feel the hip ambiance featuring chic decor with an urban style, I especially loved the lighting fixtures.  Our table was downstairs, it was a dimmer and intimate room, it didn’t offer the same vibe as upstairs, still nice but nothing like upstairs. I think they seat the bigger parties downstairs.

The service staff was friendly and helpful with recommendations, definitely ask them how many pieces are in each order because that varies. It reminded me of Italian food served tapas style, all served in small dishes to share.  Italian can be rich and heavy, so 2 people can share 1 bruschette or 1 meatball.  We ordered the following and I have to say, I actually loved everything!

After dinner, we walked off our big dinner, I noticed so many restaurants along the Mission District and I cannot wait to return for more!

Antipasti (The bread in the antipasti dishes were superb. perfectly made for these dishes)

Eggplant Caponatina with Burrata – This was so good, the vegetables were all so fresh and the melted burrata definitely enhanced the flavors!

Meatballs in Spicy Tomato Sauce – YUMMM, while I was eating this, all I was wondering was how I could possibly make it and what kind of meat was in it, wish we asked the server! The meat was so tender with a smooth texture.

Chicken Liver Crostini alla Toscana – What can I say, it was damn good Chicken Liver!

Bruschette of Fava Bean & Pecorino – Offering a nutty flavor and completely covered with pecorino!

Lamb Chops with Arugula & Goat Milk Yogurt – Nicely grilled lamb chops, combining the lamb and arugula together was a great idea. I liked it but wish there was just a little more spice added to it.

Fish Antipasti

Monterey Sardines en Saör – Very fresh sardines, topped with red bell peppers and onions offering a delicious tart flavor!

Meat Antipasti

Artisan Salumi with Giardiniera, Mixed Plate of Lardo, Prosciutto di Parma, Hot Coppa, Mortadella, Sopressata – Yes, Lardo meaning just fat, an Italian charcuterie made by curing strips of fatback. It just melted like butter. Love cured salty meat, so yes, I loved this platter.

Pizza

Prosciutto di Parma,  Tomato, Arugula & Mozzarella – Loved the combination of this thin crust pizza covered with fresh arugula!

Spicy Italian Sausage, Panna & Green Onions – Another great blend of flavors and the sausage was deelious!

Risotto

Squid Ink Risotto with Calamari – WOW, great dish! Had a hint of cheesy flavor and completely addicting!

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Apr 06

Crab House at Pier 39

What?! Pier 39?! Yes, I admit, sometimes it’s fun to be a tourist in your own city. We decided to test out the Crab House at Pier 39, featuring a bright space with colorful crab decor,  offering breathtaking views of the Bay.  We had a table of 8, so the reservations took longer than expected on a Saturday night.  Instead of just waiting around,  I told the nice host to call me when our table was available so that we could go outside to enjoy the sounds of the sea lions and the sunset.  When our table was ready, I got the call and we had a chance to walk pass and enjoy the sights of this tourist trap that brings in so much money into the economy of San Francisco.

Then…dinner time. We ordered everything to be served family style,  Mixed Baby Greens with ginger oil dressing which tasted very Asian, Caesar with whole uncut sweet baby romaines, croutons and fresh parmesan, Crab Chowder which reminded me of corn chowder but with crab, Garlic Fries which were great cause everything fried with garlic is always great, Garlic Noodles with pangrattato which really weren’t that great since the pasta was not al dente, and last but not least, two orders of the Crab Feast (serves 4 each order) featuring Dungeness Killer Crabs roasted in their secret garlic sauce! I thought the crab and buttery garlic sauce were good, but realized that some crab meats were sweeter than others, so I think it was due to the fact that it’s difficult to get the perfect sweet crab meat in April while it is not in season.   But overall, it was a fun experience and the service was great!  Did I mention that the Crab House had a Chinese menu, mainly for Chinese tourist, but my mom was able to read the menu at a non-Chinese restaurant for the first time!  I think that made her feel more welcomed!

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Apr 04

Warm Weather Means Time for Some Kazu Sushi

Today it was a nice warm day so we decided to go out for some sushi, we actually wanted to try some other places but they were closed on Monday so we decided to try Kazu Sushi. When my hubby and I eat sushi, we love the appetizers, not just the fresh sashimi.

We ordered the Ankimo, Monkish Liver Pate with Ponzu Sauce, I was actually impressed by how smooth and tasty it was, we really loved it, they made it very good. The Albacore Carpaccio, thin slices of Albacore Tuna was marinated in the perfect soy, garlic cilantro vinaigrette sauce, the fish was so fresh, topped with tobiko popping in my mouth!  We also ordered the Uni Nigiri, Hamachi Nigiri, 6 piece Spicy Scallop and the Fatty Tuna Roll with cucumbers, shiso leaves and yellow pickled radish. I felt like they gave us broken pieces of Uni. I’m a huge fan of Uni, they gave us a lot but the broken pieces was a turn off, not to say it didn’t taste good. The spice from the Spicy Scallop was a very tasty creamy spice. I thought that the combination of the minced Fatty Tuna with the fresh veggies was delicious, I love shiso leaves, it always adds a refreshing flavor!  To end the meal, we had the Hamachi Kama, the Grilled Yellowtail Collar, this is my hubby’s favorite, and we love ending our Japanese dinners with this cooked dish, you can never really go wrong with this fatty, sweet and meaty part of the fish!

Overall, we really enjoyed our meal, there were definitely some surprisingly impressive dishes!  I can see ourselves returning!

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Apr 03

Hearty Breakfast at Stacks

I know just about everyone who’s waited in the long lines at Stacks. I don’t usually wake up early enough to have breakfast on the weekends, I’m lazy on my weekends. However, my brother was visiting from Hong Kong and all he wanted was some good ol’ American breakfast.  So I ordered my favorite Eggs Benedict with two poached eggs, smoke ham on an English muffin, topped with hollandaise sauce, served with potatoes!  YUMMY! But I am sure everyone knows why I am really here, for the Banana Macadamia Nut & Coconut Pancakes of course!  Every time I come here, it doesn’t matter how much food we order, we must share this special pancake for dessert, I don’t care how full anyone is, they must take a bite of this to die for sweetness!

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