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Condiments

Today for lunch the Mrs. and I went out for Japanese noodles.  She’s a big fan of ramen so while we were wondering aimlessly with empty stomachs and I saw the restaurant I knew it was supposed to be.  Well, at least once we got inside…and I saw the menu…because let’s be honest, I didn’t even push the floor on the elevator, it just happened to stop there.

 

ANYWAY!!!  This place had some pretty good noodles.  Of course I didn’t get a card so I have no idea what it was called but they were tasty.  The point of this story however would be my fascination with the condiments that they provided.  They had some of the typical things, chilis, soy sauce, and garlic…but this was no standard overly roasted/fried garlic crumbs stuff.  This was grade A raw garlic with a press so you could add super fresh garlic to you noodles at your will.

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Perhaps even more impressive than the garlic press, was the sesame seed dispenser.  They had toasted sesame seeds in this container.  And you could hold it over your bowl, and spin the wheel thingy…aaaaaaannnnd PRESTO!!!Image

A twist on the magical wheel would send cracked pepper sized toasted sesame seed powder clouds floating onto your ramen. Not only was it super cool but it actually added a great depth to the broth.

Somebody please find one of these things and send it to me asap! I’ll be adding it to everything!

What’s your favorite condiment?

 
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Posted by on January 15, 2013 in food, Photography, Uncategorized

 

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My Favorites

As a (ex)professional chef I’m always being asked about my favorites.  “Hey, what’s your favorite thing to cook?  What’s your favorite wine?  What’s your favorite dessert?  Where is your favorite restaurant?”  As you can see this can become quite tiresome, especially if you’re like me and have a rotating palate (yes, I just made that up).

I COULD name for you a favorite for each of these categories but I typically prefer not to as I’m afraid that by the time the words leave my mouth my palate will javelin already rotated.  Then you might get the wonderful idea to cook my favorite meal for me, or buy me that perfect bottle of wine. It will have been an over-generous gesture which I will greatly appreciate but you might have expected a little more excitement.  I’m sorry, my palate rotated.

I’ve tried many things on this blog and most of them I’ve given up on after 1 or 2 posts.  This time I’ve cheated and have a few in my pocket already so let’s see how long I can keep it going!

Starting tomorrow I’ll be posting my favorites of the moment,  as they strike me, or if you’d like to know one feel free to ask! I’m not going to say daily, but I’ll definitely post more often!

My favorite new idea…this one!

 
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Posted by on January 9, 2013 in Events, Uncategorized

 

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Picchetti Winery

Driving up Montebello Road may no longer the be place to go park your car and go “neckin” as my mother puts it…but one tradition has held on for more than 100 years!  This may be Cupertino, and it may be only 30min from the city…but take this little dirt road and you’re instantly transported to wine country baby!

Picchetti Winery has been in operation for over 100 years.  Their story is an interesting one of love, depression, passion, and rebirth.  While I was on holiday I had the opportunity to go to their Cupertino tasting room and sample some of that passion.

 

 

 

 

Now, I wont bore you with the tasting notes for all of the wines…mostly because I didn’t write anything down…oops…but I will tell you a little bit about our tasting experience.  We walked in as a small posse, my mother leading the pack followed by my military brother, our cousin, my wife with a baby strapped to her, and myself bringing up the rear carrying my camera and a bag full of lenses.  Instantly labeled tourists we began with the basic treatment.  Fortunately for us the basic treatment is quite good as the gentleman behind the bar is FULL of knowledge not only about the wines he is serving but also about the history of the area as well as similar wines in the area.

After about our third portion we found ourselves to be the only ones left in the room.  This is where my mother decides that it is time to show off her band of misfits and as the barkeep is pouring my next taste she explains to him that I am actually in the business of food and wine and out all the way from Hong Kong.  After a little discussion to prove these were in fact true statements (I can’t actually describe the context of the conversation as it is something only Food & Beverage professionals know and we like to keep it that way) he began to really wow us with stories of what once was.  He was particularly proud of a massive, what I assume to be old style wine barrel which dates back quite a ways and although it is not a super unusual piece this one was special as it had always been stored indoors and as such was in pristine condition.

He also decided that although the tasting is a paid event with a limited number of samples per payment…that we all just HAD to try their Cabernet Sauvignon…as I chose to skip it in favor of drinking as much Zinfandel during this trip as possible.  I sure am glad he pushed this taste (not that it took much pushing) as it really reminded me how amazing the quality for Cabernet Sauvignon in California really is.  After living in Hong Kong there are wines you crave (Zinfandel for me as you can’t find it) and those you forget about (California Cabs as most people simply prefer to drink Bordeaux here) both of which I’m very grateful to have had the opportunity to sample.  If you’re in the area I highly recommend Picchetti Winery’s tasting room in Cupertino for an afternoon indulgence.  The wines are great, the views are spectacular, and if you’re lucky you just might run into one of the wild peacocks running around.

 
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Posted by on October 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Vacation!

Watch out world I’m going on another holiday!

This time the location may be a little less exotic (last time we went to Vietnam) but it promises to be all the more inspiring for my writing…which yes, I fell behind again…sorry.

This vacation may very well mark a twist in time for this blog which while I do intend to remain as food focused as possible, it is impossible to ignore the inspiration I get from my family and location in general.

A few things to keep an eye out for will be Junior’s firsts….there are bound to be plenty of them as he is just pushing 11 months, California food & scenery, as well as Hawaii food and scenery….yes that’s right….I’m going to both.  Don’t be too jealous, I’ll share as much as I can! 🙂

 
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Posted by on September 6, 2012 in Events, Travel, Uncategorized

 

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Steak dinner for 2

Sometimes it’s just great to shop the discounted items.

Today in the bargain bin I found a pack of Tasmanian beef tenderloin.  As I already had potatoes at home tonight’s dinner was shaping up to be a simple one!

First I cut the tatters into wedges and boiled em for about 5 min.

Season the tatters with a clove of garlic, a Tbsp sea salt, a tsp pepper, and a tsp crushed dried rosemarry.

Toss with a Tbsp of oil and roast for about 15-20min.

Trim up the green beans and blanch them in boiling water for about 1-2min.  When ready to serve toss with a Tbsp of garlic oil, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4tsp fresh ground black pepper.

Last but not least was the Tasmanian beef tenderloin.  The wifey and I like our steaks medium rare…a bit more on the rare side.  If you like you steaks more or less done simply adjust the cooking time!  For medium rare I cooked the tenderloins for about 2.5 min per side and let them rest for a minute before serving.  Prior to cooking I soaked each side with seasoned salt, fresh cracked pepper, and oregano.

Yum, Yum.  Keep on Eatin’!

 
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Posted by on April 21, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Baby Gastronomy

Yea, it’s been awhile since I posted….so…I’ve been…busy?

Let me begin by stating that the picture you see to the left here is a play on a caprice salad.  What I actually did was make mozzarella from scratch, then create a delicious gazpacho and make it into “grape tomato” shapes.  Then added the fresh baby basil and a balsamic reduction.  The end product….simply delicious.

Enough with my childish attempts to create molecular gastronomic pieces of art.  The following is a great way to give a child of around 6 months a healthy meal all made from scratch!

Ingredients:

150gms Carrot (Peeled)
150gms Zucchini
150gms Salmon

Diced all the ingredients:

:

Steam for 15min:

On a quick side note…I HIGHLY recommend purchasing an all in one steamer/food processor if you’re interested in making baby food.  My life wouldn’t be complete without my son….my son wouldn’t eat without my Advent food steamer/processor.  Now, I don’t know if it is the best one out there, but I am in love with it!  (This is not a paid advertisement…simply a chef turned father preaching his opinion.  But if any supplier would like a few nice words said about them let me know 😉 )

Serve and enjoy!

This is not Junior’s first encounter with salmon or carrot…but it was the first time to add the zucchini which I think he loved all the more.  Horray!!! My son is a healthy eater…so far…

 

Keep on eatin’….at all ages 🙂

 
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Posted by on April 19, 2012 in Dinner, food, Recipe, Uncategorized

 

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Cheese Doodles

March is a very interesting month so far with it’s food holidays.  Take today for example :Cheese Doodle day.  Yes the cheese doodle.  A cheese puffy that looks like my hair in high school…that’s right…big and curly.  Yet, March is Nutrition month.  How the two go hand in hand I have yet to figure out but today my dear readers…I’ve decided to revolt!…slightly.

I have still chosen something in the chip category:Image

So on half of nutrition month and cheese doodle day I ate half a bag of Sun Chips…cheddar flavored.  It’s as close as I would let myself get to cheese doodles today after realizing that it is nutrition month.  We’ll try to have a healthier focus in the posts for the next few weeks.

 
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Posted by on March 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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