What are you looking for?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Croque Monsieur au Poivre - Lunch and Appetizer Version

One of my favorite sandwiches - with julienned pear and chioggia beet salad

Appetizer version drizzled with a little honey

Julienne bartlet pear and chioggia beet + olive oil +seasoned rice wine vinegar + salt and pepper 

One of the best memories I have of Paris is sitting in a café terrace, eating a croque monsieur (or croque madame) and people watching.  This French version of the ham and cheese is a staple in most brasseries and, with a small salad, makes for a very satisfying and inexpensive lunch.   Every restaurant has their own version, but the best ones are those made with brioche bread.  It is light and adds a slight sweetness that compliments the saltiness of the ham and cheese so well.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Butternut Squash Ravioli Sprinkled with Amaretti, Herb Butter Sauce and Blue Foot Mushrooms

Fresh egg pasta stuffed with butternut squash, sprinkled with amaretti cookie and pepato pecorino cheese. 

As is often the case when we travel, we like to discover small towns and villages and serendipitously wander into some little local restaurants hoping to find something wonderful and authentic.  We were very lucky when we spent a day in Cernobbio, Italy (on Lake Como) and we discovered Harry's Bar.  The choice to eat there was more about the terrace overlooking the lake than the restaurant but the menu did offer some wonderful choices.  

Friday, January 11, 2013

Hot Cheese and Caramelized Onion Dip (with Beer and a Little Irish Whiskey)

This was a last minute appetizer I decided to make on Christmas Eve.  As we got closer to the guests' arrival, I realized I had not planned much in the way of something to nibble on before dinner.  My mom was bringing something to help me out (like she always does :) but I decided this might be a good addition.