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El Tiempo - is there a preferred location ?

I finally got to El Tiempo last weekend, having dinner at the Gessner location. After reading the debate over crab quesadilla vs. nachos vs. enchiladas, I decided to go with the quesadilla option. It was delicious, filling and unusual enough to justify the half plate price. With a skinny Margarita and some of the table's queso with ground beef, it was a very satisfying meal.

Jun 16, 2015
tvchick in Houston
1

Your best Egg Plant recipe

I've been making this version of eggplant parm for awhile now and I can't believe is how easy, light, and satisfying it is.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ma...

Jun 11, 2015
tvchick in Home Cooking

Monument Inn

My family had an enjoyable dinner about a year ago at the Monument Inn. We were in the area for a ceremony the next on the Battleship Texas and needed a convenient place to a nice meal. It turned out really well--made an early reservation for six pm, got a table next to the windows to watch the water traffic, and enjoyed our food quite a bit. I think that among the four of us, we ate gumbo (big hit), fish with the Ponchatrain preparation (another big hit), shrimp creole (good), stuffed shrimp (good) and grilled shrimp (good).

The consensus was that if we were in the area again, we go back. We got very good service, even though the place filled up quite a bit for a week night, and the waterfront views provided great atmosphere. I can only imagine how nice it would be at lunch!

Jun 09, 2015
tvchick in Houston

Interview with Deborah "Leafy" Madison: The Queen of Greens

I was very lucky and got to meet her at a small cooking class right after "Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone" was published. She was what my mom would call "an old shoe"--unpretentious, relaxed, interested in everyone, eager to share her knowledge and a pleasure to meet. I consult that book whenever I need an idea for cooking veggies--it's still a great resource.

Jun 07, 2015
tvchick in Food Media & News

Houston hound heading to Austin in September

Thanks for the confirmation, slowcooked. I loved Odd Duck's brunch when I took a friend from Houston more than year ago (she's still talking about it). I lived in WDC for 18 years and miss those soft shells, so I'd love to have the OD take on that classic. I guess that I'll give them a call before I venture south next week!

Jun 06, 2015
tvchick in Austin

Houston hound heading to Austin in September

OMG, that looks fabulous! Was it the fish taco of the day, because I don't see it on the lunch menu? I'm considering a South Austin jaunt for lunch on my weekday off, if the soft shells are available.

Jun 06, 2015
tvchick in Austin

Central Market's "Passport Greece"

I had fun today, picking up feta, olives, both the "biscuits" and the breadsticks, tzatziki from the dips/spreads bar, pitas, a bag of brown rice (thought it would be interesting to see if there was a difference), and a bottle of Domaine Skouras Saint George Nema from the winemaker himself. All this while sipping on a Vissinda soda in sour cherry, which was refreshing and not too sweet (still couldn't finish it, though).

I loved the way that they decorated the store, it really shouted "EVENT" and made shopping feel a little more special.

Can't wait to see what they come up with for week two!

May 02, 2015
tvchick in Austin
1

What's for Dinner #362 - The May Day Edition [through May 5, 2015]

I had a blast today, picking up Greek imports all over the store while I sipped on the Vissinada (delicious, BTW, and not too sweet). I got some Greek feta, tzatziki from the prepared dips/spreads case, olives, Greek brown rice, Mikio Cretan crackers (fig flavored and oregano/olive oil), and Domaine Skouras Saint George Nema wine, from the winemaker himself.

Here's the ad for the first week of the promotion:

http://www.centralmarket.com/In-Store...

It will be fun seeing what they come up with for week two!

What's for Dinner #362 - The May Day Edition [through May 5, 2015]

Time to clean out the fridge, so I'll be finishing some fresh mozzarella with grape tomatoes and the last of the basil pesto from earlier in the week. Also I'll use the final few tablespoons of black olive tapenade with ciabatta and then make shrimp salad that will use up the remainder of my frozen baby shrimp. I got the featured CA rose in the latest TJ's Fearless Traveler--it should go well.

Tomorrow I'm going to our local gourmet food store that is having a two-week Greek food/wine promotion. The shopping list includes deals on colored bell peppers, olive oil, pita bread, Greek dips and spreads (think tzatziki and baba ganoush), Greek feta and olives. And I might need to try a Vissinada, described as a classic Greek soda in Sour Cherry flavor.

Vanished Restaurant you miss most

Oh geez, Hillman's shrimp cole slaw. I'm always reminded of my late aunt who loved that place. It was good but that cole slaw was unique.

Apr 17, 2015
tvchick in Houston

New Sauerkraut in Town

The Lakeline HEB has all three flavors. I'll try one soon.

Apr 08, 2015
tvchick in Austin
1

What's For Dinner #357 - the Out Like A Lamb Edition [Through April 2, 2015]

One of my favorite recipes for Spring:

http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/fett...

When the asparagus are good and fresh herbs abundant, I go to this one. I cooked bacon instead of getting pancetta, but I don't think it makes a difference. It really says "SPRING IS HERE" to me.

Old Fish Shack-type place

My family had a very nice meal there last summer. We were in the area for an event at the Battleship Texas and needed a convenient place. As seafood lovers, this fit the bill. I had the stuffed shrimp (more than I could have ever eaten), others had fried shrimp, and I think that the gumbo got raves from my BIL.

Service was very professional even though they were busy, and we enjoyed the view of the Ship Channel (ask for a window table).

Mar 14, 2015
tvchick in Houston
1

Going to Austin Saturday without reservations

It's been awhile since I went to Uchiko, but my friend and I showed up at 5 pm (opening time) without reservations and were given the choice of the bar or sushi counter. Guess which one we chose?

Yes, the counter was fabulous, watching the chefs prepare everything. We ordered off the Sake Social Hour menu as well as the regular menu and had a great time, and I'd recommend going at the earliest hour possible.

Mar 04, 2015
tvchick in Austin

short visit to Austin from UK

I don't know if you're looking for something out of the ordinary in terms of cuts of meat and preparation. But here are two suggestions:

Dai Due: Here's a link to another thread started by a visitor who couldn't rave enough about the place (plus comments by a few who disagree):

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/1000747

Salt & Time: A food professional who was in town earlier this year chose this place as one she wanted to visit.

http://saltandtime.com

Edited to add: If you are interested in really great American style Deli meats and can get to this location, try Melvin's:

http://melvinsdelicomfort.com/

I will stay out of the debates about BBQ and burgers. I'm sure someone else will give you their opinions.

Feb 24, 2015
tvchick in Austin

Husband Coming from 3 months stay in China; What to cook .

Thanks so much for the updates. That sandwich looks delicious; I may need to copy it!

Feb 23, 2015
tvchick in Home Cooking

Help doctoring "crab casserole" leftovers

How about stuffing or topping a fish fillet with it?

Feb 18, 2015
tvchick in Home Cooking

Husband Coming from 3 months stay in China; What to cook .

Your plans sound fabulous. I'd love having all of it and I haven't been in China for three months.

I'm sure that he'll be thrilled. Enjoy yourselves!

What's for Dinner? #348 -- The Valentine's Day Edition [through Feb 15, 2015]

I decided to rescue some lamb loin chops from my freezer (it was time) and let them bathe in olive oil, garlic and fresh rosemary for awhile. Roasted red potatoes and green beans w/bacon vinaigrette were the sides. A Malbec from Argentina is hitting the spot, and I bought the tiniest carton of B&J chocolate brownie ice cream for dessert, into which I will mash up some berries that need to be eaten.

Stay warm, everyone in the snow zone!

Thank You, Austin: A Few Notes on My Vacation Visit

Thanks so much for the report. It's great to get the views from a visitor--it helps when I need to make plans with my out-of-town friends. And I'm very happy that you had such a great time.

Feb 12, 2015
tvchick in Austin

Need help with restaurants in Austin, TX for Bachelorette weekend!

My nieces are in the same age range as your group and they love Moonshine. If some of your group aren't big eaters, they can order a main course to split and get an extra side dish for a minimal charge. I don't remember what the reservation policy is for groups, but they don't generally take them and it may be a wait without one.

Jan 29, 2015
tvchick in Austin

What's a traditional Christmas dinner in Naples like?

Wow, what a wonderful dinner and drool-inducing description. I love how the local purveyors knew what you liked, assisted in preparing traditional meals and made the entire experience so special.

Some day, I hope to travel to Italy for just such an experience. Thanks for the inspiration!

Dec 29, 2014
tvchick in Home Cooking

Houston for one night

Thanks for linking us to your report.

I hope to be in Houston next weekend and I really want to go to Caracol. It sounds great!

Dec 06, 2014
tvchick in Houston

Houston for one night

I've never been to Caracol but I enjoyed Hugo's very much.

http://caracol.net/

Have you considered Underbelly? It's not near Galleria but it wouldn't take long to get there.

http://underbellyhouston.com/

Nov 29, 2014
tvchick in Houston

What's up with Houston nachos?!?

As I read through this old thread, I thought immediately of Little Hipps and their version of nachos, the Shypoke Egg. That place was unique, to say the least, and as I was raised in a small town, my idea of cool when I attended college in SA during the mid-70s. Cheap Lone Star and Shypoke Eggs...ahhh, the memories!

Thanks, waderoberts!

Nov 29, 2014
tvchick in Houston

Mind of a Chef, Season 3

"I watched the first two episodes of Season 3, so far hosted by Edward Lee of Louisville, KY. The first showed his Brooklyn roots (including a segment with his mom) and today showed several TX chefs focusing on the "creole" food in Houston. Loved his interaction with Chris Shepperd of Underbelly and the inclusion of his Top Chef competitor Paul Qui. I always laugh when I see chefs order very spicy foods, then suffer through the dish, eating away!"

I posted this in the original thread of this series when it aired here about a month ago.

I think this season is far better than previous ones, and I really need to see the one about fire in Argentina.

Nov 23, 2014
tvchick in Food Media & News

American South or Southwest Christmas appetizers or sides

While this recipe isn't on her website, it's on others:

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

It comes from her new book, "A Homesick Texan's Family Table."

Nov 19, 2014
tvchick in Home Cooking

What's for Dinner #331 - the Pumpkin Carving Edition [through 10/26/14]

I had about 1/4 lb. of flat iron left over a few days ago and ate it barely out of the fridge with salad. It was delicious--I think that maybe it even tasted more "meaty."

Oct 21, 2014
tvchick in Home Cooking

Beast: restaurant review | Jay Rayner

That was a fabulous review. I became acquainted with Rayner from Top Chef, then read his book "The Man Who Ate the World." It was very entertaining and I highly recommend it.

New PBS series: The Mind of a Chef

I watched the first two episodes of Season 3, so far hosted by Edward Lee of Louisville, KY. The first showed his Brooklyn roots (including a segment with his mom) and today showed several TX chefs focusing on the "creole" food in Houston. Loved his interaction with Chris Shepperd of Underbelly and the inclusion of his Top Chef competitor Paul Qui. I always laugh when I see chefs order very spicy foods, then suffer through the dish, eating away!

Oct 11, 2014
tvchick in Food Media & News