Saturday, October 31, 2009

Gary's Mom's Apple Cake

Gary's mom is adorable. I posted on Facebook that I wanted something baked with apples and what did she present me with? An Apple Cake.
Moist, not too sweet, and plenty of apple chunks! The sweet Cinnamon-Sugar topping was perfect. It rounded off the cake with some crunch and some sweetness :-)

Thanks Gary's mom :-) I finally experienced Fall... now how am I going to go about my first Pumpkin tasting of the year?!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Dancing Queen

My mom is a dancing queen!
We attended the Hartsdale Fred Astaire Dance Studio Showcase today at the Doubltree Hotel in Tarrytown!

I always get so excited for these showcases cuz my mom's dances (and dresses!) are always SO awesome!

It's always a lunch buffet followed by the dances. Let's just say that the food is never the highlight. Last year, the showcase was held at the Royal Regency Hotel in Yonkers, and the food was quite gross. Smelly salmon. That's all I remember. And this year? Cold Cuts, Cheese, Bread, Salad, and Soup. It wasn't bad. But I could've just packed a sandwich from home! I made it look pretty though :-)

Dessert will come later :-) But don't get too excited... it wasn't that great.

Here's the main attraction!

How does she pull it off?!

She danced to "Sexy Back" by Justin Timberlake for her first performance. Then, she danced to "Naughty Girl" by Beyoncé. I won't reveal her age, but she looked damn good dancing to those songs for being the age that she is. I couldn't dance that well!

Here's a clip!

Then dessert:

Yes, I took one of everything. Greedy Me.

The best one was this:

Passionfruit Mousse, layered with wafers, and Hazelnut cream!

The finale was a performance by the pros that teach at Fred Astaire. OMG the girl is the epitome of SEXY. Watching her dance is like exhilerating! What an amazing performance. They actually did two songs. And the grande finale was a performance of all four of the pros dancing together!


Wednesday October 23, 2009

As of Wednesday, October 23, 2009:

My apartment is empty! NO FURNITURE!


I made this cutsey little pillow for my brother :-)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Harvesting Your Twenties

So. My brother is turning 27 on October 20th. He's in his late twenties. That's so weird! Not that 27 is old, but because he's my brother, and if he's going into his late twenties, I'm only 4 years behind him!

Since my whole family seems to never be able to get together during the week because our schedules are all kinds of messed up, we celebrated his birthday tonight. We went to Harvest-On-Hudson.Harvest was one of those restaurants that my mom has wanted to take me to for a realllllly long time, but every time we think of going, it gets overruled by a newer, trendier restaurant. So, I'm really glad that my brother requested to go here!

First of all, Hastings-On-Hudson is like the cutest town! I had never been there... I just always wondered what was on the other side of that area of the Saw Mill River Parkway. Anyways, the restaurant is right on the water, right by the train station (just like every other river town restaurant). It's bigger than what I had expected! And the interior was like chic, kinda mysterious, and sexy.... I think the sexy part came from the kind-of-hip people chillen at the bar. I was upset because I wished it was summer. Imagine sitting outside, right by the water... Damn this Nor'easter business!

REMINDER: Eating out with my family is the best ever because we order everything on the menu!

So, basically, we got to try a bunch of stuff!

1. The Harvest Tower- Iced Shrimp, East & West Coast Oysters, Little Neck Clams, Alaskan King Crab Legs

2. Grilled Octopus with Charred Country Bread- Cracked Black Pepper, Thyme, Olive Oil and Lemon

3. Bacon, Onion, Tomato & Jalapeno Pizza

4. Harvest Baby Field Lettuce Salad with Grape Tomatoes, Onion and Cucumber

5. “Brodetto” Traditional Italian Zuppa di Pesce-Shrimp, Clams, Calamari, Mussels and Monkfish in Tomato, Garlic and White Wine Broth with Grilled Country Bread

6. 1 1/2 lb. Lobster Special with Corn on the Cob, Asparagus, and Baked Potato

7. 42 oz. Dry Rubbed Porterhouse Steak (for two)- Potato Gratin

Everything was absolutely delicious. I must mention that one of the oysters that I had was nasty-ass rotten. It was really bad. It was really awful. The taste that it left in my mouth was utterly disgusting. Fortunately, I had the nice crusty bread and the extremely flavorful and delicious grilled octopus to dilute the taste. But we told the waiter, and unfortunately, they couldn't pump my stomach of the bad oyster but they did give us free desserts :-)

Seriously, everything was really good. BUT! The standouts were definitely the pizza and the grilled octopus. And the bread. OMG the bread was super crusty, and the inside was so soft. The octopus was really something. It was such a simple flavor but the super lemony-ness was perfect. And OMFG... the "charred country bread" soaked in the lemony sauce was the most amazing first-bites I've had in a while. It was the same crust bread that they served in the bread basket. Actually, my Brodetto had the same bread, grilled. The pizza.... holy crap, it was really spicy! But the bacon and onion combo were perfect! And surprisingly, the crust was really good! Thin and crispy with a bit of chewiness.

Now onto dessert...
Tahitian Vanilla Creme Brulée with Spiced Nut Biscotti

Mixed Wild Berry Tart with Vanilla Custard

and since the berries in the tart were so delicious we added on another order...
Seasonal Fruit Plate- which we jumped into before capturing the beautiful presentation! But here are the remains :-)

We were very happy with our dessert selections! They were just super simple classics. The creme brulée had an extra crunchy, burnt-more-than-usual top which I appreciated. The berry tart was really just a tart shell filled with fresh berries and just a bit of custard with whipped cream. It was really so good! And the fruit plate was made up of berried and these melon ribbons. There was a melon "cone" filled with lemon sorbet. It was so pretty!


Oh, and just an F.Y.I on my outfit... I wore the crazy person tights...

Harvest on Hudson
1 River St
Hastings On Hudson, NY 10706
Phone: (914)-478-2800

Sunday, October 11, 2009

In The Co. of New Friends!

Ok wow, that title was so bad. I'll cut to the chase. I ate at COMPANY (Co.) last night so I wanted to incorporate it into the title! Plus, I got to hang out with some new friends, so I thought the title was appropriate :-)

Well, last night was the most fun I've had in a really long time! The whole night was just something new, exciting, and refreshing! I had made plans to hang out with these pretty faces....

If you have been to Lulu's, you know her. It's Sara! And that's her boyfriend... they are so freaken cute! Sara is 5'3" and Jeff is 6"3". F.Y.I...

Anyways, we went down to the city to meet up with their friend Pat (who I apparently am connected through my friend Meredith from Ferkauf, as explained by Facebook) to go to Blood Manor. Blood Manor is a haunted house. It's in like a warehouse-y area on the 4th floor. But your have to wait outside on this long line. Apparently, our wait wasn't that bad (1 hour) compared to last year, when they waited about 2 hours IN THE RAIN! The wait was made more entertaining by the actors outside scaring people.

There was this Creepy Girl who yelled really loud into people's ears...

And this Monster Thing (Sara thought it was the Lion from The Wizard of Oz)

This Doctor

And this Crazy Fat Clown!

I had to warn everyone in my group that the last time I went to a haunted house (it was the one in New Rochelle, back in like 2002), I punched my friend because of like a jerk reaction... for defensive purposes. I thought I was being attacked by a ghost-monster-dead thing. Also, I was really nervous that I was going to pee in my pants. They should really have a bathroom before going into the place!

Long story short, we formed a human train where everyone was holding onto each other's hand. Every time I got scared by someone (which was the whole walk through) I would pull my arms down and try to curl myself into a ball. I was like crouched for most of the time! Me and Sara were screaming the entire way through.... it was SOOOOOOO scary! But me and Sara were so proud of ourselves that we got through. And just another F.Y.I., if you pee in your pants, you get a free T-Shirt!

To celebrate our victory, we walked a few blocks to Co. , the newish pizza place opened by Jim Lahey of Sullivan Street Bakery. I've read reviews for the place, and it wasn't as great as people had expected it to be. But of course I wanted to try for myself :-)

We shared three pies:

Margherita-tomato, buffalo mozzarella, basil

Boscaiola-tomato, mushroom, buffalo mozzarella, pork sausage, onion, chili

Ham and Cheese-pecorino, gruyère, buffalo mozzarella, prosciutto, caraway

My verdict: The toppings are delicious and combined in a way that all the flavors work really well together in each pie. However, the crust. It was fluff. Not much crunch, except for the burnt boobie-bumps. There was no chew. It was really just puff. So... I said to Sara, "This is no All' Antica" :-) Which reminds me. I really need to get over there soon. I haven't been there in forever!

Ok and just one last picture from Blood Manor: WARNING! IT'S GROSS!

Blood Manor‎
542 West 27th Street
New York, NY 10001
Phone: (212)-290-2825

230 Ninth Ave
New York, NY 10001
Phone: (212)-243-1105

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Eastchester Has Gourmet!

Eastchester has had gourmet for a while. I can't believe how long Eastchester Fish Gourmet has been open. It just doesn't seem like Eastchester is a great place to have a restaurant. I like to consider EFG one of Westchester's consistently good places to eat out. It's one of my favs!

I hear on Chowhound how some people really don't like EFG. That's fine. But I just don't see how you can't like it! After dining there many times for casual lunches, anniversary celebrations, birthdays, and just good ol' mom and me dinner time, I can say that I've only had one dish that I didn't like... The Squid Ink pasta. I can say that I've enjoyed every single raw oyster, salad, soup, sandwich, and fish I've ever ordered. Plus, our waiter is hilarious. I don't really know his name but he's worked there for a while. He's tall. He's funny. He's got a moustache, I think.

This past Saturday, I went there with my mom for a random dinner date. Actually, we first went to the newly opened CHAT in Scarsdale, but of course the hostess said that the wait would be "over an hour". So what's our next choice? Obvi, EFG.

I was surprised to see that EFG was absolutely PACKED... I guess it was 7:30 on a Saturday, but still! We're in a recession and people are supposed to be cooking more at home! Anyways, since it was only the two of us, we didn't have to wait.

We went with our usual... first round= raw oysters and clams. Second round= Beet Salad (we always get this salad... we're obsessed with beets, and this salad is so good!). Third round= Fish. Fourth round= Dessert.

Before we get started on the food pictures, I just want to say that my experience at EFG was highlighted by the presence of Lisa and Chuck, who sat at the table next to us! They were one of the friendliest diners ever! I love it when people are enthusiastic about recommending food and talking about food, and this is exactly what Lisa and Chuck did for my mom and I! They even let me take a picture of their Grand Marnier Souffle!


Ok so back to our meal (I totally intruded on theirs!)...

For Oysters and Clams, we went with Peeky Toe, Kumamoto and Little Neck (Respectively)

Our Favorite Salad: Roasted Beet Salad with aby arugula, frisee, walnuts, Coach Farm goat cheese and Dijon mustard vinaigrette

My mom went with the Lobster

And I went with something new... Parmesan Encrusted Cod over sautéed spinach, tomato, and asparagus with vegetable nage

And for dessert, we always try to get something new: this time it was the Old Fashioned Sundae with banana walnut praline ice cream, fresh fruit, chocolate sauce and toasted nuts... and they split it for us into two parfait cups!

Eastchester Fish Gourmet
837 White Plains Rd.
Scarsdale, N.Y. 10583
Phone: (914)-725-3450
Fax: (914)-725-8401