Search This Blog


Sunday, April 20, 2014


Pasta, wine, friends from near and far, and four different desserts. M's birthday was pretty much my idea of the perfect Saturday night. Lighting (or lack thereof) managed to make food photos less than beautiful, but here are some highlights:

Flatbread: crispy around the edges and fluffy on the inside, this naan-like focaccia was filled with a rich, creamy, buttery sauce.

Mushroom Pappardelle: my favorite pasta, since I'm a fool for pappardelle. The pasta was delish, and the mushroom flavors really came through.

Chocolate lava cake: sure, it's not original, but I love when a restaurant executes well on a classic. This warm, cakey, chewy, melty, chocolatey concoction was everything lava cake should be.

The only thing missing from dinner was a promise from M that he'd move back to SF. I think a homecoming is overdue. Long overdue!


A happy birthday visit from dear old M took a turn for the divey when we ended up at Dalva. A Mission District bar next door to the Roxie, Dalva was unpretentious, eclectic, and just mellow enough for me. Cocktails were $8 and basic but good. No syrupy mixers here, and plenty of fresh citrus. The Nacional was made with lemons and apricot, and was a punchy, refreshing alternative to a gimlet. All in all, a fun end to a birthday celebration. Happy Birthday, M!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Cocktail Spotlight: The Trinity

3 kinds of citrus and fun times with a lemon zester resulted in this festive, blood red cocktail. Given its tequila base, deathly hue, and trio of citrus, I thought a Dexter-inspired name was fitting.

2 oz blanco tequila
Juice of 1 tangerine
Juice of half a lemon
Juice of 1 small blood orange*
1 tsp strawberry syrup (I had homemade, but jam also works)

*about 4 oz total of juice

Zest long strands of blood orange and lemon, twirl around the end of a spoon, and set in freezer to help it keep its shape.

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker, add plenty of ice, shake, and strain.


Monday, February 17, 2014

Lemon Bonanza: Clover Club

A weekend escape to LA yielded a backpack bursting with lemons from a friend's yard. What did that mean after we arrived at home sweet home? A Clover Club, of course. It's incredible the complexity tree-fresh lemons bring to a cocktail. Like summer in a cup.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Roam Burger

Elk for lunch: add it to the list of "sure, why not" things you do when you live in a food Mecca like San Francisco. Roam Burger's French and Fries version had avocados, fries, and caramelized onions in one package of oozy deliciousness. Why would I say no? Paired with a seasonal, housemade blood orange soda, it was the perfect farewell to a long week.

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Cocktail Spotlight: Pineapple Lime Fizz

Tart, tropical, and sensuously frothy. This is one for the books.

1 lime, juiced
2 oz gin
1 tsp fresh pineapple juice
1/2 tsp agave nectar
1/2 egg white

Shake all your ingredients together, add ice, and shake again. Garnish serve, and savor the compliments.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Suan Cai Yang Rou Tang (Lamb Soup With Pickled Napa)

This classic Northern Chinese dish has long been on my list of "things to learn," since Dear Husband says picked Napa cabbage is "possibly the most Northern Chinese dish there is." I present....V1 of our very own Lamb Soup With Picked Napa.

Making the soup once you have fermented cabbage is simple, but the pickling process of the cabbage will have to be saved for another post. For this soup, I boiled pork bones and ginger until I had a rich broth. Then I added sliced picked Napa, sliced pieces of shabu shabu lamb, and vermicelli noodles. I added white pepper and chopped green onions to each bowl before ladling in the soup, and done! A delicious one pot meal completed in under half an hour. Perfect for weeknights, as long as you've done some prep ahead of time.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Samovar (Yerba Buena Gardens)

Samovar is one of my favorite quick getaways from work. And the wasabi smoked salmon salad? Delightful.