Saturday, April 3, 2010

Dinner Out Last Night 04.02.10

We had a great time last night at dinner. My girlfriend Deirdre was able to join us for dinner. My husband and Deirdre have a very similar sense of humor so we all had a great time. There was much chatting, laughing and lot of carrying on. In fact there was so much fun and frivolity that I forget to take pictures of the appetizers.

Deirdre had a green salad with cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, croutons and pesto.  This would be great with a firm vegan white slicing cheese.  Dan ordered gazpacho. I had the roasted portabella and sun-dried tomato salad with pine nuts tossed with balsamic vinaigrette. This salad normally comes with goat cheese. When I make it at home I will use my nut cheese.

Here is the picture of the specials menu from last night in case it gives any of you inspiration.

I always find reading what Ian has in his mind each night gives me many ideas that I can make vegan at home.

For dinner we had the pasta special without the chicken. It have so much flavor without the chicken I really can’t see why it needed it. The pasta also included lots of very lightly cooked asparagus, tender artichoke hearts, thinly sliced fennel, fresh tomatoes and onions in a lemon basil sauce. There were large threads of lemon zest and basil in the dish that made the flavor pop.  I liked that the sauce was light and not thick. I think spring pasta dishes should be lighter to match the weather.  Clearly Ian agrees. I guess that is where I picked up the habit.

To go with our dinner we had copious amounts of green tea to wash it down.

The restaurant was packed last night. At one point I looked up and there had to be 20 people waiting to be seated and every table was full. When the weather is good and they open the patio neighborhood people come out of the woodwork.

At the end of the evening Ian came out and sat down with us for about 20 minutes before he left for the day. We chatted about food and his recent vacation. It is so nice to have a neighborhood place where we feel like family. We really are very spoiled.

Unrelated Note:

As normal Dan and I were chatting this morning about what to make for dinner tonight. We seem to have settled on a big salad platter with fresh and marinated vegetables, a grain salad and garbanzo beans. To go with that we are going to have some polenta and panelle crackers with spreads. My only concern is that my parents may not consider this an adequate amount of “real food” for dinner. I may add another dish to dinner, but only time will tell.

I have garbanzos cooking now and need to get the polenta and panelle cooking soon. There is also going to be another variation of nut cheese tonight. This time I decided to combine macadamia nuts and raw pumpkin seeds to see what that does to the flavor and texture. I have a lot of food to put together this afternoon so I had better get moving. Talk to you all later when I will be back with at least a couple recipes.  I hope you arell have a wonderful Saturday!


  1. Alicia,
    Chris and I love salad and crackers for dinner! I make a big spread of it too! I call these meals carpet picnics, because you mainly eat with your fingers and it is a casual affair.
    I usually serve a very basic salad, romaine, tomato, olives I also do spicy pickled veggies like cauliflowers carrots, and peppers, plus carrot sticks, celery and cucumber or broccoli. We usually eat it with onion crackers and I make a dressing of garlic and fresh parsley...

    I have been giving thought to starting my spring pasta's and you just boosted my enthusiasm 1000%!!!
    Ian's pasta looked fantabulous!!!
    What type of pasta does he use???
    Oh...I just realized I am writing an article here...I better scat! I think I will go cook something!
    Hugs, Me-

  2. Brandi,

    We eat salad and crackers (usually raw) for dinner or lunch very often. But my folks are big "meat and potatoes people". It is always a challenge to figure out what they will consider a full meal.

    Ian used whole wheat linguine. I didn't ask the brand but I can if you are interested. We are going back tonight after the dinner rush to have some green tea and chat with everyone.

    Can't wait to see your spring pasta!


  3. i want the rosemary a'jus and the red onion marmalade,i can pretty much imagine what id do to make the onion marmalade but NO idea about the a'jus

    ive been wanting to do something with pumkin seeds they are supposed to have a lot of magnesiuim in them (good for us cranky girls i heard lol)but all i have is my food processer and i dont think its strong enough. cant wait to see your final product and instructions.

    i havent talked to the health food store ladies yet, so im not sure what they think of the truffles. i dont think i added enough stevia to their batch. but kudos again for that perfect easy delish recipe. did i tell you what my husband said about them? he said they looked and tasted like handmade gourmet chocolates that you would get in a choclatiers(sp?) shop....nice:)

  4. Michelle,

    I know that sounded good to us too. The a jus will be tough since it is meat juice. Remember when I did the vegan demi glace you could use that but add rosemary to it.

    I made the nut cheese tonight in my food processor so it should work. I will get that posted for you as soon as I can.

    Oh.... that you for sharing what Walter said! That just made my evening. :-)


  5. That portobello salad sounds so good. Definitely something I would have ordered. We're planning on a grilled salad tonight. Though I have yet to get started on prepping it.

  6. Heather,

    The portobella salad was good. I order it often since it is very easy to make vegan by just eliminating the goat cheese. One of the things I like the most about his salads is that they are very lightly dressed. I hate salad that is drenched in dressing!

    Your holiday meal looked great. I just read your post. Loved the lemon tofu pudding idea. Genius!


  7. I thought the lemon would go well with the strawberries. It did. It'd be great with blueberries too!

  8. Heather,

    Excellent point! Blueberries and lemon are one of my favorite combinations. Have you tried orange and strawberries? I like that combination as well. Then there is blackberry, mint and bourbon. That is my all time favorite ..... but I digress.



Related Posts with Thumbnails