Thursday, July 30, 2009
The Houston Press food blog Eating Our Words runs an occassional series called Where Are We Eating?, in which the reader is invited to guess the dining establishment where a photograph was taken. I guess it's a win win situation, sort of subtle advertising for a restaurant without actually saying where it is :). Well, here's something a little different - how good are you at history? - this is a photograph taken of a Houston restaurant that no longer exists. It was quite an old favorite, so I invite you out there to guess - Where did we used to eat?
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
I'm tempted to order some, and experiment with it.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Fennel is such a versatile plant. The bulbs are eaten as a vegetable, the stems and fronds flavor stock, and even the pollen is prized for its flavoring punch. The so called fennel seeds, as it turns out, is the whole fruit. I spotted this wild fennel plant growing in a nearby park, I plucked the green fennel fruit and tasted it. It's fresher and more intense than the dried fennel "seeds" often used in sausage. As in India, I chewed on a few of these as an after meal palate cleanser.
Friday, July 24, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
local farmers market. Sweet and juicy, all it needed was a few drops
of good olive oil, fresh cracked pepper, and large crystals of sea
salt (salt here procured from Zihuatenejo, Mexico). I had fresh basil,
but somehow, this didn't need it.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
One has to be careful about eating this ripe (it turns soft and yielding), as the unripe fruit, like an unripe persimmon, as an astringent sap. The actual fruit is sweet, and a texture reminiscent of a well cooked sweet potato, albeit with some graininess. I believe they make this into a popular ice cream in India, called a chikoo flavor.
Monday, July 20, 2009
to the cuisine of Wisconsin. Mostly salty, they are revered for this
squeaky texture as they are chewed. Nor often available outside of the
region of manufacture, I found these boxes in Central Market.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Monday, July 13, 2009
Speaking of allergens - I recently had a chance to go try out the first of the Five Guys Burger stores that opened here in Houston. I guess the concept is simple enough - instead of being distracted by stuff like chicken and toys, the store just focuses on making burgers and fries. That's about it. Oh, that and peanuts.
You see, the signature thing about the place is that they keep bulk containers of peanuts for people to snack on while waiting in line, talking on the phone, dessert...there are peanut shells everywhere (makes you wonder why they don't serve elephant burgers...). Fortunately, the very front of the store has a sign that clearly warns away people with peanut allergies - that this place is toxic for them.
About those burgers - they come cooked one way (no rare, no other way - the rapid assembly line allows few choices other than toppings). They're an okay, moist medium...and rather bland. They could be better seasoned. It's reasonably sized for the price, and the burger toppings are fresh (tomatoes were remarkably un-mealy, meaning that this is one group that didn't refrigerate them in spite of the Houston heat). It's better than the average burger...and that's not difficult. The average burger is bad.
Servings of chips were ridiculously generous. The large order could have fed a family of four. Of course, I see the next table over, and the group of four there had FOUR orders. The fries themselves are okay - not limp, just a little greasy, and the tell-tale skin on that is supposed to signal that these potatoes were real (and not that the processing cut out a peeling step).
Verdict: worth a try. But not on the top of my list,
Searching for more refresquerias yielded this little store from that seems to specialize in homemade Popsicles. They offered some other interesting fare like aguas frescas and some peculiar flatbreads topped with pickled pork rinds. Sadly, the raspas here don't look all that great.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Here's a new and unusual product I tried. It has a blueberry jam filling, surrounded by a layer of mochi, and then a thin baked soft "cookie" crust. As with most desserts and snacks tailored for Asian tastes, it wasn't overly sweet. But not much blueberry flavor, either. Interesting, though.