Saturday, September 26, 2009

One Very Full Day and Recipe Ideas

Today started early at our house because we were going to northern Virginia to the outlets in Leesburg. We met our friend Louis to make a long morning of it. All three of us love to go outlet shopping. It was toss up who spent more money today, but I think my husband was the big winner.

I always stop at the Williams Sonoma, Pottery Barn and Crate and Barrel Outlets. If any of you have a Williams Sonoma Outlet near you and drink wine get to the store quickly. They had Riedel wine glasses marked down 60%. It was a great deal and even though we didn’t any more wine glasses I grabbed another set of eight.

A few new plates happen to leap into my shopping basket. They were so pretty and would make such nice photo back drops for the blog that I couldn’t resist.

After shopping we came home and ran by the library. I was very disappointed that they didn’t have the book Rose recommended “Never Be Sick Again”. I read the reviews on the book and Rose is right it looks like something that I will love so I can’t wait to read it. Looks like I will be ordering another book from Amazon.

The library had two cookbooks that I don’t own so I grabbed them to see what they are about. The books are “The Healthy Hedonist” by Myra Kornfield and “The Vegan Family Cookbook” by Brian P. McCarthy. I will let you know what I think of the books after I have had a chance to read them. Do any of you have these books and if you do what do you think of them?

Also at the library was a book on exercises for the BOSU ball “Get On It! BOSU Balance Trainer” by Aronovitch, Taylor and Craig. If any of you are thinking of getting a BOSU ball it is great for working the core and stabilizer muscles but I wanted more ideas for what to do with it. I skimmed the book on the way to the restaurant and discovered the BOSU is so much more versatile than I realized. I can’t wait to begin putting the book to use tomorrow.

We ended our day at our favorite neighborhood restaurant were our friend Ian’s specials have inspired me yet again. Ian had a fried green tomato pizza with basil pesto, sweet banana peppers, goat cheese and crab on the menu tonight that sounded amazing. I think this pizza would be wonderful without the crab and with almond feta substituted for the goat cheese. Additionally there was also grilled wild boar over sweet potato mash with brussel sprouts and a dried cherry demi glace. Seitan cutlets would be a great substitute for the boar, and a red wine and dried cherry sauce would be similar to the demi. I don’t expect to develop a healthy vegan version of demi anytime soon, but then again anything is possible so maybe I will be able to develop a recipe eventually.

I always get inspired when we stop at the restaurant. Ian is such a talented chef and my husband calls him my muse. I know Ian is so much more than that. My cooking has improved exponentially from knowing Ian. Each time we see Ian he opens my eyes to a new flavor combination or technique that has made me a better cook than any cookbook I have ever read. Thank you Ian for sharing your talent. You are always an inspiration to me and anyone else that chooses to open their eyes and learn. I can never thank you enough for all that you have taught me about food.

In addition to the food we always enjoy everyone at the restaurant. For a couple of years the restaurant was our home away from home. It was great to see everyone tonight and we had a wonderful time as usual. Thank you all for always making us feel like part of the family.

Sorry for the lack of recipes today. As you can see I haven’t spent much time at home and none of it was in the kitchen. I hope you all had a happy productive day too. Expect a few recipes tomorrow.


  1. We were really glad to see you as always! Sorry I didn't have more time to hang at the table. I shared the halibut for dinner...more cream! I know, I know, but for Ian's food it is worth it. And I tried to order the ceviche and he asked me not to. Hopefully we will see you there soon!

  2. Alexandra,

    We completely understood that you were busy last night managing. It was good to see you too!

    I wish I could scold you for the morel cream sauce but it smelled amazing when I was in the kitchen so I understand why you had it. I know it was as amazing as always.

    talk to you soon,

  3. Sounds like a great day shopping and dining. It's cool you have such a great restaurant to frequent. It sounds lovely. I really like the idea of green tomatoes on pizza. I have lots of them on my tomato plants right now...and with the sun's intensity waning into autumn, I think they're going to stay that way.

    BTW, I made some of your almond feta and it is good...even my husband likes it and he has never been one for cheeses, vegan or otherwise. We ate it with falafel...yum!

    I'll try to feature it in a future post.

    I don't have any of the above cookbooks, but I've always had the Vegan Family Cookbook in the back of my mind when making my book wish list...I'll be interested to know what it's like.

    Regarding "Never Be Sick Again," someone like you who is so well versed in health and nutrition probably won't find much of it to be new, although he does have an interesting model of health...I'll be interested in your thoughts on that book as well. always thought I had a good common-sense base on good nutrition and health, but he really opened my eyes to some things.

  4. Rose,

    We are very lucky to have a nice restaurant so close. Ian is such a great inspiration to me as you can see. Those were just two of his specials from Saturday night. I love to see what he dreams up every night. My husband was calling him Darth Vader last night (in reference to "come to the dark side") when he came out to tell us the specials for the evening.

    The fried green tomato pizza sounds great to us as well. It is in my recipe journal to replicate in a healthy way.

    I am so happy that you both liked the almond feta! The "infamous Ian" (the chef in the post above) also liked the almond feta. That was when we knew it was a winner. One of his line cooks asked me for the recipe and isn't a vegetarian let alone a vegan.

    The Amazon reviews on "Never Be Sick Again" really intrigued me. The book goes on my next Amazon order, probably this week (we need goji berries). I will absolutely let you know what I think. Can't wait to read it.



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