|Trapper, drifting into puppy nap time|
Not to say we haven't eaten quite well this past week - that's definitely not the case after making the rounds to three Coronado restaurants.
Last Friday, we sat out on the patio for a sunset Happy Hour at Saiko Sushi, sipped $5 glasses of wine, and shared a few of the happy hour and house specialities: Saiko Edamame (seasoned with celery salt and garlic), Saiko Roll (salmon, yellowtail, crab, wasabi, aioli, eel sauce, tempura fried), and the Rey Roll (seared albacore, tempura shrimp, crab, apple and mustard vinaigrette).
On Monday, Leroy's Kitchen + Lounge invited us to photograph a Wine Dinner featuring Fritz Underground Winery (Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, CA). The five course menu offered Asparagus Soup, Steamed Mediterranean Black Mussels, Mar i Muntanya, Spice Rubbed Tri Tip, and Zinfandel Poached Strawberries, paired with Fritz wines. Emily's Mexican Chocolate Cake Martini sealed the deal.
Our top pick of the evening was the Mar i Muntanya, a multi-layered paella-esque creation, paired with Fritz Pinot Noir.
|Mar i Muntanya|
Leroy's Kitchen + Lounge added a few new dishes to the regular dinner menu, including Diver Scallops with Asparagus Risotto, California White Seabass, and Duroc Bone-in Pork Chop. You can see our photos of the Fritz Wine Dinner, and new additions to the menu, on Leroy's Facebook Page.
|Seared Diver Scallops with Asparagus Risotto|
On Tuesday night, we photographed Il Fornaio's Passaporto Dinner celebrating some of the Festa Regionale crowd-pleasers. We photographed, and promptly devoured, Pasta alla Castellana from the Trentino-Alto Adige region. Rigatoni pasta tossed with pork tenderloin, bacon, shiitake mushrooms, Parmigiano, brandy, cream and fresh thyme...need I say more?
|Pasta alla Castellano|
Last night, I was finally able to get to this week's French Fridays with Dorie recipe, Cheese Souffle. In honor of St. Patrick's Day, I substituted Irish Reserve Cheddar Cheese and chives, in place of Dorie's Gruyere and nutmeg.
|Souffle Mise En Place|
Rather than making one large souffle, I played around with a few different sizes...
|Individual serving in a small ramekin|
While attempting to get one last photo of two souffles together, I rushed to get them from the oven to the table and dropped the second on the table. Souffles fall quickly once removed from the oven, but they really fall fast when dropped! Despite doing what souffles do best, falling rapidly before your eyes, the flavor and texture was grand.
To accompany our souffles, I made these Sweet and Sour Glazed Pork Chops from Saveur. During grilling, they are brushed with a reduction of balsamic vinegar, honey and rosemary. I cooked ours stovetop, in a dutch oven, and they were tender, flavorful and pretty alongside the souffles.
Within minutes of posting a photo of my fallen souffle on Facebook last night, I received the most heartwarming e-mail from Ann, who gave me permission to share her words and photo:
"Despite your French Friday's with Dorie disaster, you are an inspiration to all of us. I love your blog and of course, Dooley and Trapper! My Sister Sal and I made this dinner last week, with Trapper supervising! See attached photo! Have a great weekend!"
|Ann's Chicken Picatta, inspired from this post|
Thank you, Ann. You truly made my evening with your e-mail and photo!
French Fridays with Dorie is an online cooking group, dedicated to Dorie Greenspan‘s newest book Around My French Table: More Than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours. As members of the group, we have purchased the cookbook and cook along as much as we can. There is a new recipe each week, and we post about that recipe on Friday. We are asked to refrain from posting the actual recipes on our blog. The book is filled with stunning photography, and personal stories about each recipe, which makes it that much more intriguing. I highly recommend adding it to your cookbook collection if you haven't already!