everydayfoodie's Profile

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Cake decorating classes?

All In One Bakeshop may be a good option for you - they have a variety of classes on many different topics that are taught by decorating professionals.

http://www.allinonebakeshop.com/class...

Don't let the building's exterior fool you. It may be small and a little dingy, but the quality of their products and instruction is exceptional.

Another option may be ACC's culinary arts program - I think that they have informal classes as well as more traditional instruction.

Jul 28, 2009
everydayfoodie in Austin

Mexican rice help

I use this recipe from Simply Recipes:

http://www.elise.com/recipes/archives...

I make these changes to it:

--Add 1-2 tsp of cumin (but I like cumin a lot so start with less unless you're as big of a fan as I am).
--Use 1 cup of roasted, canned, diced tomatoes with green chilies (Muir Glenn if you can get them, but Rotel otherwise
)--Replace 1/2 c. of the chicken stock with the juice from the canned tomatoes
--Add 1 Tbsp. of tomato paste

Mar 02, 2009
everydayfoodie in Home Cooking

BEST MAC AND CHEESE???

Eddie V's Truffled Mac and Cheese is an amazing thing but in the "gourmet" category, not necessarily the traditional one. It's baked, very creamy, and has just the right amount of truffle flavor. It's also garnished with real truffles to make it all the more decadent. Along the same lines, Roaring Fork has a Green Chile mac and cheese worth trying as well.

Mar 02, 2009
everydayfoodie in Austin

Hard Hat Report

We were there on Sunday and while it's not perfect pizza, it's some of the best we'll get out near Lakeway/Bee Cave/Steiner Ranch. The menu includes pizza, salads, pasta, and sandwiches, with a nice little wine list. Service was good. We had the Mama Mia pizza (sausage and pepperoni - with the kids and all). The crust was chewy and not too think with a nice flavor. They use sliced Italian sausage which is my favorite and the sauce was a great base but not overwhelming.

Feb 24, 2009
everydayfoodie in Austin

Mussels?

he mussels at 75 Chestnut were just lovely. The broth goes beyond the standard white wine and garlic preparation to include tomatoes and saffron. The mussels are cooked with rounds of cured chorizo which, while mild by Texas standards, offer a nice spiciness to the mussels that balances well with the acidity of the tomatoes and wine in the broth. The aromatics in the dish were cut in a large dice which I appreciate because it's easier to get a bit of tomato and onion along with the a mussel in each scoop. The rounds of chorizo completed the variety of shapes and sizes in the dish so each bit was a nice blend of textures and tastes.

Either through the addition of chicken stock, or just by the inclusion of the tomatoes (I'm not sure which), the mussel broth was more abundant and slightly thicker than what I've had with other mussels dishes. Given that sopping the broth with bread is one of the fringe benefits of eating mussels, this makes the experience even nicer. The mussels came with a single piece of lightly toasted bread and were I to order again I would request extra from the start.

The portion size was perfect for as an entrée for one or a starter for two.

There are two things I would like to see the restaurant do to take this dish to the next level:
1. Soak the mussels in water for just a few minutes before steaming to help them give up their grit. I bit down into ocean sand several times while dining which isn't particularly pleasant. While this is a risk one runs when eating this dish, there are ways to avoid it.
2. Double-check that all of the mussels have opened before plating them. I had three closed mussels and 3 that were closed enough that I wasn't quite willing to risk eating them. While I just discarded the questionable mussels in my shell bowl, I'd rather see that bit of sorting done before the dish is served.

These two nits not withstanding, the mussels were an excellent option for a Texan looking for fresh mussels in New England - thanks to the board for the recommendations.

Cover 2,3? whatever

I went there for the Super Bowl and had a lovely time. They've combined a nice restaurant with good sports viewing and it was just what I was looking for. I had the tuna appetizer which was fresh although a little under-dressed for my taste. I also had the triple dip appetizer which was fun and good for munching through the 1st half of the game. (Picture here: http://www.twitpic.com/1afh1

)

Their wine by-the-glass menu offered several options in a range from about $6 - $12 and then $6 offerings weren't bad at all. Above all, the service was fantastic.

While I won't put Cover 3 into the category of some of Austin's best restaurants, the food and ambiance are good, it's a little further north, and it's a great alternative to a traditional sports bar for serious sports viewing. I will absolutely go back.

Feb 05, 2009
everydayfoodie in Austin

Heading to Barton Creek Resort in February and Looking for Local Favorites...

The steak quality at Backstage is amazing. I haven't thought to ask if they wet or dry age. They often have entertainment on their back patio but never inside. Inside is always very quiet and laid back with the lake/hill country crowd.

Jan 26, 2009
everydayfoodie in Austin

Heading to Barton Creek Resort in February and Looking for Local Favorites...

For a steakhouse I'd recommend driving a little further out of town to Backstage Steakhouse. It's a relaxed atmsophere with good services and the food is fantastic. It's a little-known gem because it's on the edges of Austin instead of downtown, but it's a different experience from a traditional chain steakhouse.

Jan 26, 2009
everydayfoodie in Austin

Black Forest Cupcake Recommendations

Hi all,

I had such great help with my pre-ballet dinner request that I'm back for more :)

I'm on the hunt for a really good black forest cupcake (chocolate, cherries, etc). Has anyone had a good one of these at any of the new cupcake locations or any existing bakeries?

Thanks!

Natanya

Dec 03, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Sunday Night Dinner in Downtown Dallas - Help!

Hi all - We'll be traveling to Dallas from Austin for the King Tut exhibit and staying downtown on a Sunday night. I'm looking for a nice place for dinner that has good food and good service, but that isn't as expensive as a Mansion or Stephen Pyles. Several of the places I've looked at are closed (Tramontana, Suze, Local). Are there some gems I'm missing? I'd like to avoid Tex-Mex and BBQ but am otherwise open.

Thanks in advance for suggestions!

Suggestions for Pre-Ballet Dinner

Thanks so much for the suggestions. I haven't been to Mulberry yet and it sounds like great fun. This does remind me that I need to try Malaga in its new location. Once again, thank you!

Dec 03, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Suggestions for Pre-Ballet Dinner

Hmm...that's not such a glowing recommendation. I've never been. Do you have other suggestions?

Dec 02, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Suggestions for Pre-Ballet Dinner

Gypsy - brilliance!

Dec 02, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Suggestions for Pre-Ballet Dinner

Hi all - I am stumped. I need to plan a girl's night out dinner for four women and one tween before the ballet. We'll be dressed up for the show so a nice dinner is in order but we want to avoid anything too heavy so a steakhouse is probably out. We have one in our group who doesn't do Sushi. Downtown is better so we're near the Long center. Given all of these things, I just can't decide where to go. Thoughts and suggestions are greatly appreciated.

Natanya

Dec 02, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Brunching on Eggs Benedict in Austin

Wow - that's just too bad. I've had better experiences but now that you mention it, we tend to go just as brunch is starting so that may be a factor. Even so, they should be prepared to handle their brunch crowd. I'm sorry it wasn't a better experience.

Sep 02, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Great News for Fans of Paul Petersen (Little Texas Bistro)

I had a fantastic cooking class with Paul Petersen at Central Market today and am happy to report that he is planning to open up a new place here in town in the next nine months. He says the concept is similar to Little Texas Bistro but it will be in the city limits this time - possibly downtown. The new place will be tied to the Gage Hotel and is tentatively going to be named 12 Gage :-)

Also, in the next two weeks his line of salsas will be exclusively stocked by Central Market. I have a preview bottle of the green salsa called Venom Verde and it's really nice. There's enough heat to make you happy but not so much as to overpower a chip or any other dipper. The red salsa is roasted and has a warmth that sneaks up on you and lingers long after you've swallowed.

I'm scheduled into another class with him on October 19 so there may be more news then.

I put together a run down of the class for my blog if anyone wants more details about the class. I expect in general the interest for this group will be that he's coming back to town.

http://everydayfoodie.wordpress.com/2...

Aug 31, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Dessert Help

Napoleons are always fun because they look so impressive and seem difficult to make, but if you're a baker they probably won't phase you in the least. For bit size ones you could make them 1/2 of the size you normally would. If you have access to late-season fruit at a farmers market that would be even better. I'm not sure what your tastes are, but here's a whole slew of ideas from Epicurious:

http://www.epicurious.com/tools/searc...

Aug 26, 2008
everydayfoodie in Home Cooking

Iguana Grill

You are correct. It's been that kind of Monday for me :-) Good catch.

Aug 25, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Steiner Ranch - Am I Missing Something?

There was an article about the new restaurant on the Steiner Blog today. The new place will be Thai Harmony and will be run by the same folks the run Thai Passion. I have some small hope it will be good.

http://steinerranchinfo.com/2008/08/t...

While poking around the blog I found this link about the restaurant next to Fion.

http://steinerranchinfo.com/2008/06/a...

We really enjoy Fion so I'm excited that the owner is involved in the new restaurant endeavor.

Aug 25, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

What is a good substitute for honey?

How about agave nectar? Given that it's a liquid as well it might not mess too heavily with the proportions in the recipe. I found this wikipedia link for more details:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agave_syrup

Aug 25, 2008
everydayfoodie in Home Cooking

Brunching on Eggs Benedict in Austin

Helind - I'd be interested in your take on Blue Star's benedict. I love it but will admit I haven't tried as many different types as you have. The hollandaise is a bit tart - which I like to offset the creaminess and the eggs are always the right amount of runny for me. What really makes this benedict for me is the english muffin. Blue Star gets all of their bread from New World Bakery and the muffins are just a little bit sour, not like a sourdough bread, but enough to round-out the dish. I love these muffins so much I order and extra on the side. Their benedict is $8.95 and comes with a side of fresh fruit. Blue Star has consistent service and is a lovely place on a Sunday morning. If you like mimosas, try their Pom Secco - Prosecco + pomegranate juice.

Also, I did a quick search on eggs benedict over at Dishola and came up with this list of ones for you to try:

http://www.dishola.com/dishes/index/A...

Aug 25, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Steiner Ranch - Am I Missing Something?

We've been to Mimi's for brunch and it's just okay - pretty typical large chain fare. It will do in a pinch but I'm pretty addicted to the Blue Star Cafeteria for Sunday brunch if I'm at all inclined to drive.

Aug 25, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Steiner Ranch - Am I Missing Something?

We finally tried Backstage Steakhouse this weekend and it was amazing. The service was fantastic and the food really great. We started with red chili pork flautas, complete with fresh hatch chilies. We both had steak for dinner although the five spice chicken and catch of the day (snapper with spanish rice and hatch chilies) were hard to pass up. We will definitely be driving out there again instead of driving into downtown. What a gem!

Johnny Fins is next on our list to try as is Poodies.

However, now that we have the Fion wine bar I can subsist on wine and cheese alone within walking distance from my house. I hope the restaurant that opens up next to it will be decent.

Aug 25, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Austin wine bars?

I would agree that Vinosity is a really nice choice, particularly if you want to stay away from downtown. What I like most is the casual atmosphere and the regularly changing flights and food. I've had several nice flights there and while the service is very casual, sometimes that's just right. Compared to other wine bars in town I didn't find their prices overly high.

Aug 25, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Iguana Grill

I have consistently been underwhelmed by Iguana Grill. While it's not typically as pricey as Fonda, they are particularly proud of their food and seem to want to charge on the high end for just okay food. They do have a great view, so it's sometimes worthwhile to have appetizers and drinks on a nice evening, but if you want good Mexican in the same neck of the woods for much less money I'd recommend Polvo's.

Aug 25, 2008
everydayfoodie in Austin

Lost my inspiration - need an elegant but simple stand-up appetizer

I am in love with the goat cheese idea. Every time I serve anything in endive it's wildly popular. I bet you could top that with a small sliver of roasted red pepper or possibly with fine diced prosciutto. I'm adding it to the list for my next party.

Aug 07, 2008
everydayfoodie in Home Cooking

Lost my inspiration - need an elegant but simple stand-up appetizer

A variation on this is a short skewer with a date wrapped in a thin slice of Serrano ham and a cube of firm Spanish cheese (Iberzia or Manchego). Drizzle the whole thing with some good honey and you're done. The skewer is nice because guests don't have to get their fingers dirty prior to dinner - just be sure you have a place for used skewers.

Aug 07, 2008
everydayfoodie in Home Cooking

Big Daddy's House Premieres Sunday

I may be seeing things, but I think that Aaron is using the same set as the Neely's do. I remember being surprised the first time I watched the Neely's that their stove was at the back of the set, because that's absolutely not camera friendly if you're at the stove a lot. But I realized after watching a couple of times that they don't use the stove as much as other chef's do because of their focus on BBQ. Even so, it's not really the best set for Aaron given that his cooking is very stove-top intensive.

All-in-all I thought his first show wasn't bad. I'm planning to put together this spice rub this week to try on a pork tenderloin. I also really liked the idea of the broccoli on the sandwich - I may try a variation on that this weekend.

What's your favorite thing to do with chevre?

You mean other than eating it straight out of the package? :-)

I second the crostini. I slather the cheese on toast and add some roasted red peppers. Another option is to do cheese, thin-sliced prosciutto, and a single slice of pear or apple.

On the grill you can do a pizza on a pita that takes just a few minutes to make and won't heat up your kitchen. See the recipe here:

http://everydayfoodie.wordpress.com/2...

Jul 24, 2008
everydayfoodie in Home Cooking

Extra Cherry Tomatoes

I made these Mini Caprese Bites for a potluck party and they were fantastic:

http://find.myrecipes.com/recipes/rec...

While they call for grape tomatoes I actually used cherry and they worked just as well. If you can, let them sit in the olive oil, salt, and pepper for a few hours to marinade.

If you want to skip the skewers you could do this is a pretty salad with squares of mozzarella instead of rounds.

Also, I used smoked mozzarella and it was fantastic.

Jul 24, 2008
everydayfoodie in Home Cooking