Monday, February 14, 2011

Start your day the chocolate way

One of my dreams in life is to go to Paris and eat pain au chocolat for breakfast everyday.  Not like I can’t get that in NYC but I have this image of me sitting at a little sidewalk cafe eating chocolate for breakfast.

And after that I’d go to Christian Louboutain and buy some shoes.

But that’s another story.

Today – I had chocolate for breakfast because when my boyfriend went to Costco I slyly slipped a box of these in his cart.

ss 203 I love these things.  Just sweet enough and full of chocolaty chips.

We had a lovely weekend. Friday night we went to Codmother’s for dinner.  I had a cup of clam chowder.

ss 216I ordered Shrimp Parmesan and split it in half.  I didn’t finish that half and ate the leftovers for lunch on Saturday AND still have some leftover for lunch today.   I don’t know if the portion sizes are just that enormous but it’s making me feel better about my vow to take home leftovers when I eat 218Dave had a salad and Black Sea Bass with Mushroom Risotto, Spinach and 217 ss 219

Saturday I sleep super late (9 am – which is really late for me) and then sat like a lump on the couch watching many episodes of Top Chef while Dave ran around doing errands.  I got up – finally – and did something productive – which was to make dinner for Dave and the kids for Tuesday night – a chicken casserole-y type thing.  I should have taken pictures throughout but I get so caught up in cooking that I totally forget. 

Bad food blogger.  Bad.

I am not a big person for casseroles.  We really didn’t eat many growing up but I gotta say – I think this one came out pretty great.  Here’s what happened.

1) I put a pot on to boil and made about 3/4 a pack of Barilla Mostaccioli per package directions (actually slightly more al dente than usual) and set aside.   I drizzled some olive oil and sautéed some onion and garlic.  Then I browned some boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 2.5 of them) seasoned with a little kosher salt and fresh ground pepper till almost cooked through and then set aside.

2) I made a rue with a little flour and butter then deglazed the pan with some white wine.  I added one can of Cream of Asparagus soup and 2 cans of lowfat milk and another splash of wine and stirred until creamy.

3) I added  some cayenne (about 1/4 teaspoon) and about the same of poultry seasoning.  I also threw in about 2 tablespoons of grated parmesan.   I added some chopped baby spinach and green onions and about 3/4 of a bag of frozen mixed vegetables.  Then I added the chicken back in + the pasta and stirred till everything was coated.   I added some fresh ground pepper as well – no salt as the cheese and the soup have plenty of sodium already.

I put it all in a shallow pan and added about a handful of breadcrumbs and some more freshly grated parmesan on top (about 1 oz).

ss 206It tasted sort of like chicken pot pie with pasta.  I felt very Good Housekeeping after I made this. 

Saturday afternoon, Dave and I headed to Long Island to go to dinner with my mom and Jen.   We went to Fork & Vine which was awesome.  It was very difficult to try and pick what I wanted to eat off the menu.  It was dark and hard to take pictures but if you ever find yourself on the North Shore of Long Island you should give it a try.

They have small plates as well as entrees.  Dave and I split a roasted beet salad.  Mom got the baked St Andre’s Cheese which was very brie like.  We also split the Philly Cheesesteak Spring Rolls.

I had Short Ribs over plantain puree with black beans. Jen got Pork Tenderloin.  Dave got Skirt Steak. Mom had Grilled Sole. The only downside of this meal was the goat cheese mashed potatoes I ordered on the side.   I expected creamy goodness.  They were seasoned with chopped tomatoes.  Wrong color, wrong consistency.  To their credit once I inquired about the ingredients and mentioned I didn’t care for them the waitress whisked them away and off the bill.

Dessert was…I mean…I am having trouble forming words.

There was chocolate.

There was peanut butter.

It was all mixed together in something called a Tasty Cake.

I almost licked the plate.

Sunday we had a delicious breakfast made by my mom aka Annie V.  Later she watched Inception while Jen, Dave and I went for about a 35 min walk.  Dave brought his dog – the lovely Genevieve with him and she proved that the snow is melting here in NY based on her condition when we got back.   She wound up in the tub. 

In the meantime Jen heated up some White Chicken Chili and we had that for lunch.

It’s a totally different taste than regular chili but it was really, really good.

       ss 220 

I’m going to ask Jen to guest post again soon since she has virtually kicked me out of the kitchen at my mom’s.

We helped to clear out some books from the basement and then headed back to NJ to have Thai & Vietnamese food for dinner.   We went to Lemongrass and started with Shrimp Rolls – which are so delicious.  The peanut sauce on the side is perfect.

ss 222

I had Thai Style Lo Mein.  Half of this is sitting in Dave’s fridge I’m proud to 224

Dave had Pho with brisket.  He loves Pho.  I think he also likes to say 225

And that leaves us with today. 

Today when I signed into MSN Messenger there was an article from Glamour where they talked about what ‘his Valentine’s Day gift means’.  Supposedly if your significant other gets you a frying pan you should break up with them.

Being partial to frying pans I wholeheartedly disagree.

I’ve got some work to do today before Dave and I head out for an early dinner.  I’ve tortured him for nearly a year with every culinary reality show known to man and tonight he is taking me to craft.   I’ve been to craftbar and ‘wichcraft and Williams-Sonoma where I asked Tom Colicchio if his hand hurt from signing so many cookbooks but this is the first time I’ll be dining there.

Happy Valentine’s Day.  Tell those you love you love them today.  You should do it every day – but today you have even more of an excuse.

In a little bit I’m going to go pledge my love to this box of beauties.

ss 201


  1. I especially like the fact that Pho is not pronounced Pho, As in what u do dat Pho?

    For some reason it is pronounced Fa, as in a long long way to run. Though somehow I can't imagine Julie Andrews singing Fa, A Vietnamese Noodle Soup. (although the syllables fit in rather nicely).

  2. I especially like that you combined the Sound of Music with what you had for dinner.

    Will you be my Valentine?