Friday, February 27, 2009

Roaring Forties Blue

This Cheese from Australia was excellent melted over fresh noodles that I cut from Talluto egg sheets. It had an unusual tang that I couldn't put my finger on, maybe it's from the kelp the cows chow? $14.99 at WholeFoods Market.

That's a pan fried Leidy's pork chop with the bargain broccoli both WholeFoods Mkt.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Happy Losar

I'd like what they are having.

The Greatest Funeral Ever

Last Saturday night we went to Chris' Jazz Cafe to check out this show. Completely enjoyed myself listening to their tunes. They rocked out in all kinds of ways. They hit some Santana like vibes, a few tunes had a bit of a Steely Dan feel, there was some surf guitar type stuff, Fleet Foxes-ish and plenty of latin influenced beats. Their musicianship was impressive so were their low key stage personas.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Krispy Kraken

It's not a certifiable Kraken but this was a big critter. I grabbed it because it looked like the freshest. I'd say B to B+ for freshness. Turned out a little too large for my purpose.

At Hung Vuong we grabbed seaweed and tofu and made miso soup and also the shrimp and squid for the crispy stuff. Hung Vuong supplied the greens for the salad mix as well. We used
Nước chấm to dress the greens and Japanese mustard set the shrimp and squid flavors in spicy relief.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

El Costeno

Tacos al pastor and tongue taco from El Costeno at 940 S.9th st. Their tortillas were wonderful and the tacos tasty.

Minneolas @ Scott and Judy's

Intensely delicious oranges in the Italian Market today 4/$2.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Holy Mackerel

At WholeFoods this morning heavenly mackerel, fillets and whole fish, were on display. I took a 10 oz. fillet ($12.99/#), blackened it, split it in 2 and added it to the divine grits (the lil' lady made), pork cutlet and egg b'fast. This was the freshest tasting mackerel ever! A delicious breakfast rivalling the Italian Market Breakfast of last weekend.

Friday, February 20, 2009

YELP! Philly

Philly Yelp!, the haven for clamorous louts, often gets my goat.

I've been meaning to say something for a while but I held my tongue because I did (see update) get a bunch of traffic from Philly YELP! I had quite a few reviews posted on Philly YELP!

I decided to speak out today because I saw this piece about YELP! and extortion.

I shoulda pulled the trigger on Philly YELP! over the juvey circle jerk that YELP! calls "today in talk". This feature involves the banter of a few Philly YELP! habitues beating the bloated horse with the infrequent pithy quip tossed in. "Today in talk" is dreadful enough but there's a bonus! You can visit the profiles of the bickering wenches and take a gander at their portfolios of uploaded glamor shots. Their uploaded images, just as sexy as their reviews. YELP!'s own 'Big Papa' Jeremy Stoppelman strikes a peacockesque pose (pic above) on his profile page.

After the 1000th "to die for" "melt in your mouth" and "awesome waitress" you might think enough but you'd be missing out on the cache of cat food info available. Something like 93% of YELP! male members are feline lovers! YELP! visitors can get the scoop on the latest in Philly pussy chow. That's something to YELP! about.

UPDATE: soon after this post I received an official message from YELP HQ. I was told to take down all my posts containing links to this blog I told Yelp to get F'ed. Yelp has credibility problems because they are as phony and greedy as their leadership. Test my theory Google Yelp Blows, Yelp Sucks, Yelp Philly Sucks, Yelp Philly Blows.

Your Dough: Stretch It. Use It Wisely

I had scraps of Fontina, Mozz, a hunk of goat cheese and a little fresh oregano. I had a defrosted Brooklyn dough ball. Over at South St. SuperFresh I grabbed one half pound of 'hamcola' and a couple of onions. WholeFoods has loose crimini mushrooms and I used their 365 marinara.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

"A turbot without a cook is better than a cook without a turbot "

To Alain Ducasse the turbot is more indispensable to good cooking than the chef. I read the quote on the Ducasse website. At Louis XV, his spot in Monaco, the entrees average about 80Euro. The perfection of the ingredients does look to be the underpinning of the cuisine. The descriptions for the dishes are lists of ingredients.

At the Plaza Athenee, his spot in Paris, the turbot dish is 100 euro.

Adour Alain Ducasse
(Photo: Eric Laignel/Courtesy of Adour Alain Ducasse at the St. Regis New York)

Other interesting sentiments offered on the Ducasse website:
"I am not looking to perform culinary exploits but to offer my guests the chance to enjoy some essential pleasures."

"Great cooking is principally a matter of choosing the best ingredients. In Alain Ducasse’s opinion, the suitability and freshness of the produce used is much more important than the skill of the cook."

"He is no more interested in creation for its own sake than he is in mere glitzy presentation."

"Alain Ducasse’s vision is best expressed in his endless endeavours to make ‘Haute Cuisine’ simple, approachable and understood by everyone. Because "a restaurant is first and foremost a place to eat".

Manoumalia and Things Swiss

Rene Schifferle is the man behind the Swiss Perfume Brand Les Nez. Les Nez offers only a handful of niche perfumes made by premier perfumers. "The Unicorn Spell", "Let Me Play the Lion" and "L'antimatiere" are compositions by Isabelle Doyen. "Manoumalia" the newest scent in the Les Nez line is a creation by Sandrine Videault. Videault was among the last students of perfumer Edmond Roudnitska.

I thought these items were blog worthy because perfumery is like cuisine. Creativity, vision, quality of ingredients, presentation and even sensory shock are shared elements in both endeavors. Les Nez and Swiss perfumer Andy Tauer create works that in serving up the unexpected provoke an exciting satisfaction and a novel impression. Deconstruction, irony, cleverness, glitz, preciousness are not the primary notes on their organs.

Two other Swiss over achievers Teuscher the maker of $ublime chocolate$ and my blogger friends over at FX cuisine merit a salute.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Bison Flat Iron and Grits

WholeFoods had Bison Flat Irons for $7.99#. They were tasty but tiny, 3 pieces weighed just a pound. The bison is chili rubbed and seared.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Season of the Witch Hazel

Witch hazels are blazing away at this time of year. I believe the plant with the coral colored flowers is HAMAMELIS x intermedia 'Antoine Kort'. The other is the Chinese witch hazel, (Hamamelis mollis) 'Wisley Supreme'.

These pics taken at Rare Finds Nursery where yesterday they held a Hamamelis hulabaloo.

Teuscher Chocolate 99 Cherry Ricotta Torte

With all those words it had better be good.

My little lady gave me a $pectacular box of Teu$cher chocolates. Teuscher is rightly considered among the best of the best. Their champagne truffles are the pinnacle of chocolate achievement.

I also received a 100gm bar of Chocolate 99. I mixed the 99 with rum, cream and butter and used it make a base layer in the torte.

Italian Market Breakfast

Whoa so delicious. Fiorella cheese sausage, fingerlings with cipoline, and 2 fried eggs make a great plate.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Dry Coppa and Goat Cheese Ravioli Mama Mia

I was going with the flow today. The coppa at Claudio's got my attention, so did the Spanish goat cheese. I asked for extra ricotta, enough to make ravioli and cheese cake, then I was set. I already had some egg sheets from Talluto.

Later I figured on using the yellow tomatoes from Iovine with onions and chicken stock for ravioli sauce. The tomatoes sucked before cooking. Though when I blanched them they gave off a nice aroma.

These were extremely tasty, lightest, most delicate ravs with a little spicy kick and tang. The concasse with caramelized onions and chicken stock was lovely, altogether it was perfect with a sauteed chicken cutlet.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Faragalli makes those unbelievably delicious braided loaves that Di'Bruno Bro$ sells on Chestnut St. They also make these beauties.

Their steak roll is perfect with Fiorella's hot fennel and a toss of shredded fontina.

A Record Breaker in Philly

Yes the warmest temp on this date in a while. A meteorological event!

An even more astounding event seemingly occurred this morning on Radio Times with Marty Moss-Coane WHYY when PA Sen Mike Brubaker (R) district 36 gave out his 'personal' cell number 717 917 8541. He was talking about hunger in PA and said he was interested in hearing from any Pennsylvanian with ideas on the topic. Shocking right?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Pumpkin Blackberry Ricotta Torte

Blackberries were $1 per 1/2pint at the Italian Market
Claudio's ricotta is about $4/#.

Same recipe

This was dessert following an entree of fillet of striped bass from WholeFoods Market $12.99/#. An excellent side of fish (1.5 lbs), I gave it a spicy rub, buttered it up then sprinkled with herbs, baked and broiled.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Dani the Girl #13 Outback Steakhouse

I'm a big fan of Outback in Cherry Hill, NJ. We stopped in last week and they've up'd the ante on doggy bag detailing. Last time they included the date and the contents. This time we got an a la minute sketch from our server Dani #13

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Market Failure

Not a speck of white grits in WholeFoods Market. Super Fresh is packing every Quaker Product available but not white grits. Essene no white grits either. Spruce Mkt comes thru with the rebel ingredient!

Feel the Love

We drank a bottle of Gruet sparkling wine from New Mexico with these dishes. Cape May salts were not so great but added an uni like quality to the over-under dish. The fryers were superb. The pheasant dish was an extraordinary triumph. I browned off the seasoned, sectioned bird with guanciale, added shallots and herbs then braised and tossed in the nopalitos and fresh oregano in the last few minutes. The pheasant is over grits fattened up with oaxaca cheese, cream and chicken stock. Pheasant & grits easily the best dish out of our kitchen so far this year.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

9 th St Today

I stopped in the T&P gallery today. They had a stencil show going on. Many intriguing images!

9th St Today

The Italian Market was popping today. I ran into friends who told me they saw pheasants (live) at the live chicken vendor down by Federal. Got there too late and they were closed. I backed up to D'angelos and grabbed this bird $7.99/#. While I was inside looking for boar bacon I saw the guanciale about $11.99/#. I asked about it and Sonny informed me that it's made from particular Iowa pigs and cured in-house AND you can get just a piece vs a whole cryo'd jowl!

The nopales were firm, thin, brilliant green and de-needled $1.50/#.

Update:2/12 I checked in with the birdman today. He had no pheasants. he said it's hit or miss and he's never sure when they are gonna be supplied. Told me that they go for $20 per bird dressed.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Funny Business: Beef with Beef

SuperFresh South St. overstocked with the incomprehensible.

South St. WholeFoods Market the thing that they have in common with SuperFresh is only the word "market".


Last night I had a great time bombing everything in sight with snow balls but I'm ready.