Monday, July 26, 2010


The world's sprung a leak

Holy crap, it was so hot this weekend that the ice caps melted and the earth sprung a leak. Kidding! But isn't this the coolest sprinkler? I went to a bbq at a colleague's place this weekend and it was rather warm. I'm telling you, the kiddie wading pool was starting to look mighty tempting, but I settled for kicking my sandals off and walking around the sprinkler. But I know, this is a food blog, and you want to see what the main event was! I'm going to apologize in advance to any vegetarians who happen to be reading, because man, this is decidedly not up your alley.

The Whole Pig

Lechon!! Our awesome host ordered this from the Philippine Bread House (I was already familiar with their baked goods, like amazing pan de sal and ube bread) and it arrived in the trunk of his car (bet his car's going to smell like pork for ages). Oh man. How can I describe to you how delicious this was? I don't even know if I should try. The crispy, crackling skin, the melting fat, the salty, shredding pork butt...well, just trust me, it was amazing. There was a bit of a tussle over the snout and the ears, but I was perfectly content with the back end of Mr. Pig. (And so was my friend who was on chopping duty.)

Plate 1

But it wasn't just lechon we had, and here's a view of my first plate. Giant pile of lechon, pan de sal, roasted sweet potatoes, shrimp, and (fighting a losing battle) salad. No, I'm not going to tell you how many more plates I had, it's too embarassing. I did limit myself to only one and a half pan de sal, though...see, I can exercise restraint! Still, I don't think I was the only one who may have overindulged a tad, there seemed to be lots of people sitting around, rubbing their bellies, unable to move. Oh, maybe it was the heat. Right, the heat!

But hey, there was still dessert to come. I didn't get a good photo of it but our host made the most amazing peanut butter cheesecake. I ate a small wedge and that finally did me in. I didn't eat again until dinnertime the day after. But it was so worth it. And now I've got a plate of leftover lechon sitting in my fridge--anyone have any ideas what to do with it?

I hope your weekends were great!

Friday, July 23, 2010

I'm back!


Did you miss me? I really needed that break, it's been so busy, hectic, and most of all, HOT. Yesterday, the heat subsided a little--when I went out for lunch, I walked for 5 minutes, then said "Hey, you guys, I'm not sweaty yet! Woohoo!" Of course, by Saturday the temperature is supposed to be back up to the mid 90s, so that didn't last very long. I've been drinking lots of iced green tea and, on an especially hot day, we had these delicious icy treats. Yes, they may be completely unnatural, but sometimes that is exactly what you need! Anyway, it cooled off just enough for me to turn the oven on and do my first baking in EEEEOOOONS. And wouldn't you know it, the cookies didn't even turn out that well. Oh well, try, try again! At least they look kind of pretty and I think the recipient will enjoy them.

Peanut butter filled chocolate cookies

So what have I been up to? Well, as I mentioned in my last post, Py was visiting for the last few weeks and we racked up quite a count of meals eaten in restaurants, starting with Omen, continuing on to Bar Americain (which I found myself enjoying much more than I thought I would), Dinosaur BBQ (the night that Lebron James announced where he was going--I only know this because the people at the bar started howling), Kefi, and I know I'm forgetting some. Of course, I did not get a single picture of what we ate. Too self-conscious, see. Oh yeah, and there was the night that Brian Williams bought our dinner and then the next day we made an appearance in Page Six....let me quote, if you don't want to click the link:

"Brian Williams showed why he's well-liked by NBC colleagues the other day. He played third base for the "Nightly News" softball team as they were beaten by the "Today" squad 14-3 in DeWitt Clinton Park. When the thirsty players repaired to the back garden at Druids on 10th Avenue, Williams felt so bad for a couple whose romantic dinner was interrupted, he insisted on picking up their check."

Yes, all my dreams have been realized, for I have made Page 6. HAHA!! No, seriously, it was very sweet of him, although we weren't having a romantic dinner so much as a late dinner during which I was complaining about how sore my legs were after the gym. Druids, by the way, has excellent food.

Pony Bar

But it hasn't all been eating, either--there's been drinking, too. And after a first failed attempt to get to Pony Bar (they were filming something, so we adjourned to Hello Berlin instead), we dropped by after the World Cup final. They have a mind boggling (to me, a beer novice) array of craft beers on tap. And by the way, that final was really, really boring, except for the last 15 minutes or so. Come on! The 3rd place game was MUCH more exciting. Anyway, congratulations, Spain.

99 Luftballons

We had lots of friend time, including a much-needed trip to Otto's Shrunken Head for some tiki drinks and cocktail monkeys (how did all those monkeys end up in my bag, people?), a movie night featuring a screening of the amazing Black Dynamite (less amazing was this movie about a stone-faced detective and his babboon partner. No, really!) complete with pizza rolls and mini-weenies. Not to mention a (almost entirely) no-cook cocktail party where some of us clutched entire pitchers of mojitos. And we went to a couple of street fairs, including this one on 4th Avenue where a gust of wind caused all the balloons at one of the stalls to disappear into the heavens. 99 luftballons indeed.


And of course, no summer would be complete for us without a trip to Coney Island. We checked out Luna Park, which isn't that much different from Astroland (well, newer rides), but as you can see from the makeshift sign above, it's still delightfully seedy. Although also clearly fancified--look, a multi-colored arrow!


The real draw though, is the Cyclone. Every year I think "man, could this roller coaster get any more rickety?" And every year, the answer to that question is "YES." We rode in the front car for the first time ever and it was about 100 times more terrifying. I swear I almost shot out of my seat during the first drop, thank goodness for my death grip on the bar. Those people who raise their hands over their hand on roller coasters? You are all crazy. Gosh I love this ride! I did feel a little neck pain for a day or two afterwards, which I guess means I'm getting old after all.


Oh gosh, HOW COULD I FORGET THIS. While we were at Coney Island, we (or I should say Py, I am soooo unobservant) saw NICK CAVE!!! He was with his kids who wanted to play Shoot the Freak. Sneaky photo taken by Py (click through and see another shot). We were too shy to go and say hello.

Well, are you still reading? How are your summers going? I'm happy to be back and posting again :)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Short break


Hi all--I know it's been quiet here lately, but it is too hot to cook or bake (ugh, we broke 100 degrees two days running)! And Py is visiting, so I'm going to take a little break from blogging. I'll be back shortly, hopefully with lots of good eats, even if they aren't of the cooked variety.


In the meantime, here is my fried catfish from a recent dinner at RUB with sides of baked beans and potato salad.

bbq bacon

I know you're thinking, why on earth would you go to a bbq restaurant and then not eat bbq? Because it's too hot!!!!!! But I did snag some of this bbq bacon :)

Hope you are all staying cool wherever you are!