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Immeasurable Chicken and Waffles: good flavors and still hot

If every a restaurant had spirit, soul and joy it is Immeasurable Chicken and Waffles. It is located on West Pratt Street, a bit off the beaten path of the downtown restaurant neighborhoods but worth the trip. A Sunday morning jaunt for breakfast with friends proved to be an enjoyable dining experience.

Why Immeasurable?

Let me explain the name Immeasurable, it is the name of a gospel group, three young ladies who also happen to own the restaurant and they are its soul. I would also say their catfish platter is immeasurable with the crispy moist filet, the greens, mac and cheese and hush puppies – every thing was perfect on this plate –but I digress. Back to the ladies of Immeasurable, at any given time you will find anyone or up to all three of the young ladies on the floor.

Link to my photo slide show

It must be the spirit of "Holly" Golightly

Immeasurable Chicken and Waffles is a generous space, a big room with booths, counter and tables. As I eyeballed the interior I saw a large poster of Audrey Hepburn in character as Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany’s – it seemed out of place. When I questioned Victoria (Vicky T) Coleman, one of the Immeasurable singing group, she said it came with the place and they kept it. There is a juxtaposition here but I’m thinking the poster is more a good luck charm for these gals, breakfast being the key word.

A big smile, a warm welcome and how can I help you?

Two tables were pushed together to accommodate our table of six with the option that two more might be joining us. A young lady, our waitress greets us with a big smile, a very warm welcome and how can she help us. It was one of the young ladies from Immeasurable, Vicky T and Yanna (Ponytail) Foster was also waiting tables that morning. Vicky was just as cordial and helpful as anyone could be on a very busy Sunday morning and she impressed not only me but everyone at the table.

Our crew was a mixed bag from two high school students to an executive for a large Maryland corporation. We are and were serious eaters that morning, wanting to try as much as possible – here is our order:

Chicken and Waffles
Wings and Waffles
Fish and Grits
Catfish Platter
Fish and Grits
French Toast & Egg
Additional sides:
Mac & Cheese
Home Fries
Dirty Island (Ice tea and fruit punch combo-very sweet
)Orange Cranberry Cake
Coconut Cake

Vicky T thought we had ordered too much and I agree the plates were generous. The skinny one at our table, Michelle, couldn’t let it rest, it was like a gauntlet had been thrown down and she wanted to make sure we finished everything we ordered. Other than a couple crumbs, we rose to the challenge.

Let’s talk about the food

The majority of the recipes are family recipes from Vicky T, Ponytail and Ronnie Brooks the 3rd young lady in the trio. Let me state that family recipes are a good thing and so glad they are willing to share. This isn’t molecular gastronomy here; it is solid home-style food prepared with love and with passion.

As I said earlier, the Catfish platter was number one amongst us with the Chicken and Waffles a close second. The mac and cheese, the greens and the hush puppies were clearly the side favorites.

The chicken and waffles with the savory chicken gravy is great on its own but enhance it with some hot sauce and/or maple syrup. I didn’t taste the French toast but it got raves. There is a lot offered on the menu at fair and reasonable prices not just breakfast food, they offer much more. Here is a link to their menu – click HERE

My only disappointment out of all the glorious food was the home fries; they were lackluster, no flavor. If you like buttery grits they have them though one in our party thought it was a bit too much butter BUT that becomes a personal preference and as they said on Seinfeld, “Not that there's anything wrong with that.”

Special note: There is an AUTOMATIC 15% gratuity added to each check. These gals work hard so pop them and additional 5% when you are there.

I missed meeting Ronnie Brooks the third Immeasurable, had she been there the three young ladies might have popped into song. We got to hear a bit of their music from their CD and their excellent and unique rendition of Amazing Grace. You can hear a couple of songs by Immeasurable at MySpace

Dara’s prediction: You will be hearing more about Immeasurable Chicken and Waffles and the Immeasurable gospel group. I’m surprised the Food Network hasn’t found them yet…they will! They are beautiful, talented and they can cook in all senses of the word.

Immeasurable Chicken and Waffles
1700 W. Pratt Street
Baltimore MD 21223
410 483 8707
Restaurant Hours
Monday-Thursday, 7 a.m.–10 p.m.
Friday-Saturday, 8 a.m.–3 a.m.
Sunday, 8 a.m.–10 p.m

Hunan Taste - Authentic Hunanese comes to Catonsville - in the HMart strip mall

How daring are you when it comes to new foods? Do you hesitate or do your jump in with your tastebuds a blaze with curiosity? Do you search out new flavors, new cuisines and new restaurants? I fall to right of the center of the scale, willing to try the new – wanting to search out authentic foods of countries, not the American version.

Recently much has been said about Hunan Taste, a Chinese restaurant in Catonsville at the H-Mart Plaza at the corner of Rolling Road and Route 40. A couple weeks ago I met fellow members from the Charm City Hounds, a foodie group that is a spin off from the website, as we tasted, sampled and commented on about 20 different authentic dishes at Hunan Taste. One can have the Americanized, well-recognized dishes as well as the authentic Hunanese or sometimes called Xiang cuisine offerings at Hunan Taste. We opted for the later.

Ox, turtle, frog and many other oh-mys!

Out of our group some had been to Hunan Taste previously and for others like me, it was a first. We ordered numerous dishes with the purpose of trying each one; platters were passed amongst the 2 tables. From pork belly, turtle, frog, ox and fish – no one hesitated to taste. Comments from the other Charm City Hounds were favorable to some dishes and disappointment with others. Expectations were that the pig skin dish would be crispy and it wasn’t, that the soups be intense with flavor but they were mild and disappointing. Certain dishes were the stars of the afternoon tasting and some won’t be re-ordered on return trips.

The general consensus is that they might have played down the spice, the heat on the dishes for us and not given us the ‘authentic’ spicy dishes as would be served in the Hunan province in China.

The star dishes of the afternoon were:

• Spicy sliced ox lung
• Mao’s braised pork belly
• Sour beans and pork
• Tea tree mushroom with pork – most felt is an excellent side
• Preserved sausage with smoked bamboo shoot which is really slices of salt preserved pork
• Steamed fish head

This is a link to a photo slide show

I recommend a visit to Hunan Taste. Be sure to take a number of people so you can try many dishes- be daring and go with the authentic Hunanese dishes. The question for me is would I go back and the answer is yes.

Best place to buy live lobsters in D.C./Md. area?

Last week Lotte in Ellicott City had them at $4.99 a pound and they met my lobster craving. I would have to taste a lobster from NE next to one from Lotte prepared the same way to really see if there is a difference in taste. I would think fresh from the cool waters of New England with no travel time would be better but not that much to pay double the price.

Searching for cooking classes?

FYI - I have just put together a pretty comprehensive list of cooking classes in the Baltimore Area. I am curious if there are other classes in the area. Gino Troia cancelled his current classes so I don't now the future holds on that.

Restaurant Pre-Fixe Dinner Specials

I am researching a story about restaurants in Baltimore that are doing pre-fixe dinners on a recurring basis that are "cost effective". I have some that I know about and figured all of you know other restaurants in the area

Here are a couple I have down:

Ixia- Chef's Blind Tasting Menu $55
Sotto Sopra - Chef's 3 course tasting dinner $30 & Daniela's Rustic Italian Dinners $35
Cinghiale - Sunday Dinner $29

Thanks in advance!

Anyone been to Gino Troia in Canton?

I forgot to tell you that a lot of the tables are on the 2nd floor.

Anyone been to Gino Troia in Canton?

It is fabulous food and you should go. It is a hidden secret. It is no longer Bruschetta.
Gino not only charms the front of the house he makes the food sing from the kitchen to your plate.

Intimidated by crab!

Since Maryland is below the Mason-Dixon line let me extend some Southern hospitality by welcoming you to Maryland and offering to show you how to eat crabs. (you pay for the crabs ~ I teach for free). I was cleaning my own crabs at age 5 so don't worry, a five year old can do it. Each person has a distinct style but the basics are the basics.

My offer stands.

What is your favorite personal food story?

Well we can say she was a "risk taker". Thanks for sharing

Mar 18, 2007
Dining Dish in General Topics

What is your favorite personal food story?

On another post we were talking about cookbooks we like to read and I thought we all must have at least one interesting personal story that would make for good food reading. Like the time my mother was away and my father, sister and I we were making spagetti and it kept boiling over. My father never cooked and he didn't know to turn the temperature down on the boiling water. The sauce was no problem.

As children we all sat at the table as a family for dinner. If you asked for the salt to be passed my father instinctively would add salt to his dish and then pass the salt. So my sister and I would ask for the salt, he would salt his food. We would pass the salt back in front of him and we would ask for the salt and again, he would salt his food. Then he would complain to my mother that she cooked with too much salt.

I have many more but I bet your stories would be great to read. I hope you jump in and jot one down.

Mar 18, 2007
Dining Dish in General Topics

Good reading cookbooks?

I truly enjoyed "Consuming Passions" by Michelle Lee West (which you can get for about 1.00 used on More stories of growing up in the south with recipes at the end of each chapter like the ultimate mac & cheese.

Jeffrey Steingarten is good...but I read a chapter and feel exhausted. He is intense but a great read. Bourdain is fascinating as well.

Mar 18, 2007
Dining Dish in Home Cooking

What is truffle honey good for or on?

I used truffle honey to marinate some chickens that was absolutely luscious. I found the recipe on line. Here it is:

2 whole fryers
1 tbsp salt
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 jar LuLu White Truffle Honey
3 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

In a mixing bowl, combine the chicken stock with the salt, honey, thyme and black pepper.

2. Rub all over the chicken inside and out and refrigerate overnight.

3. Place the chicken in a 350-degree oven and brush the chicken with the remaining marinade every few minutes.

4. After about one hour, the chicken should be a beautiful golden brown. Remove from the oven and serve immediately.

I started to make my own truffle honey mixing truffle oil and honey works well.

Mar 17, 2007
Dining Dish in General Topics

Owings Mills Dinner Rec (No Baltimore)

By now the decision has already been made. If you want to linger over a nice dinner in a nice atmosphere...Linwoods. Yes pricey.

I agree with Mari Luna, a real sleeper. The Mexican food is quite good. My preferences is the Lamb Shank for $14.00 or the shrimp appetizer. Their specials are quite good as well.
Chef Luna was the former sous chef at Citronelle and executive chef at Babalu in Baltimore when it first opened. The down side is no reservations, bring your own alcohol and the atmosphere, well it is in an old converted Carvel stand. To me worth the wait.

Seafood you can try CJ's. I hear good things about the Artful Palate buried somewhere in Owings Mills.

Let us know where you ended up and notes on your meal.

What "Asian" cuisine to start with?

Most of the general supermarkets have an Asian section nowadays. Asian is pretty broad stroked. Chinese is very different from Vietnamese. If I were to recommend a style to start with it would be Chinese. My preference is Vietnamese, the foods are lighter because it is such a hot climate. Thai has similarities to Vietnamese.

As for the stir fry, it is quite simple because you have prepared all your ingredients ahead of time. Nothing to scare you. I don't know where you live but check out and see if there is an Asian cooking class might ease your anxiety. If not, if there is an Asian restaurant in your area ask if you can work for free in the kitchen one day and see how things are done.

As for Chinese food cookbook authors: Martin Yan, Ken Holm, Barbara Tropp (The modern art of Chinese cooking...techniques and recipes). Or try Ming Tsai or Patricia Yeo's cookbooks. I always look on for used books.

The hot, sour, salty and sweet very similar to our receptors on our tongue: sweet, bitter, salty, and it isn't to off putting. Some believe we have the "hot" receptors as well. If a dish seems dull a splash or citrus or vinegar, a pinch of salt, a hint of sugar..will perk up a dish.

I hope I haven't been "master of the obvious" here and this has been some assistance.

Mar 15, 2007
Dining Dish in Home Cooking

Fun Dinner in Baltimore - Tuesday

I enjoy eating at the bar at the new Pazza Luna. The downstairs has been refurbished, the staff fun, the food very good and good price point on the menu. They do have specials that run a bit higher.

Their vegetarian lasagna is awesome and I love the antipasti mista that 3 can nibble on easily.

Good food, nice atmosphere, good price point.

If you want more upscale "contemporary" Italian try Sotto Sopra which has a very New York City atmosphere and I also recommend Gino Troia's place in Canton in the old Bruschetta location.

If you are willing to travel a bit outside the city, try Mari Luna on Reisterstown Road near the county line. Only problem, no reservations.

Favorite Food Network Chef

I guess I'm an old-timer when it comes to the FN. I loved Cooking with Sara Live on many different levels. One she is who she is, no need to be an entertainer while cooking and come up with a gimmick. Sara came with great credentials, an actual chef versus some of the other personalities. I used to like David Rosengarten's show where he featured 1 item and focused on the history, recipes. I liked Mario but found him stiff on air and very outgoing in person though he has become more relaxed overtime.

I am not a huge fan of Mexican or Southwestern cuisine so I didn't watch Bobby Flay that much. He has evolved from having to have a facilator on with him on air to find his own persona.

My feel also is that Paula Deen is being groomed to take over Emeril's 8 p.m. slot

The food network's prime audience now, the demographic are males from 15 to 30. The audience focus is younger and for the female stars to have more clevage.

I think Alton is skilled and entertaining. Ina is stylish and sleek. The only thing I do watch is America's Iron Chef from time-to-time seeing how the guest chefs operate and what they create. Some stuff from behind the scenes on Iron Chef is the guest chefs are given 5 items that they can be working with and have to submit the recipes before hand. So in essence they do and don't know what will be there.

Mar 09, 2007
Dining Dish in Food Media & News

The new Pazza Luna

Pazza Luna Trattoria Italiana is not affliliated with Faccia Luna. One of the owners is Riccardo Bosio of Sotto Sopra Restaurant ( He brought the chef to the US to work at Sotto Sopra and then he moved on to Cafe Troia. The chef is Gianfranco Fracassetti. The food is Italian not American Italian. The first floor has been remodeled and they will be remodeling the 2nd floor soon.

Must Eat in Manhattan

I love the Great New York Noddle Company on the corner of Bayard and the Bowery. It is as basic as you can get as to atmosphere. Afterwards go down Bayard about a block and get some Chinese Ice Craem

Mar 08, 2007
Dining Dish in Manhattan

First time to wd-50... what to order?

The food is molecular, avantegard so don't expect a regular food experience. I went a number of years ago and the raw oyster that was flattened out to be paper thin and a square is something I still don't get. I have done the Mini Bar at Cafe Atlantico and I looked at the 33 to 34 taste as dinner and entertainment. So if you want a 'meal' that might not be the place to go. Consider it an experiment in gastronomy. A poor man's El Bulli

Mar 08, 2007
Dining Dish in Manhattan