Wednesday, December 26, 2007


Date Bars

Oh dear, I'm afraid that it has been slightly longer than I anticipated between updates. You don't mind, dear reader, do you? I have been immersed in the process of moving, packing, finding apartments, working, shopping.... and to be frank, I'm tired! Of course, I am never too tired to pull out the camera and snap a few of the meals I am lucky to savor. In fact, I'm never too tired for food in general. Running on two hours of sleep, and in desperate need of a nap? Mention a trip to Pistacia Vera's and I'm ready to go. No sleep and existing on vitamin energy drinks? Mention a meal at Lemongrass, and I'm your girl. No... well, you get the idea. In any case, here are some random snaps from the past few weeks... I promise that when I have a bit more stability, I will have better content! I SWEARS. On Frank the lolcat. That's a deep promise.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

The humble Rice Krispie treat

Humble spaghetti

Sugardaddy's Auburn Chocolate brownie ends

These delicious, decadent, TERRIBLE FOR YOU brownie ends were purchased at the Factory Store of Sugardaddys Sumptuous Sweeties. They were featured on a Throwdown with Bobby Flay episode that I caught on Food Network a few weeks ago, and I discovered that they are located in Polaris which is about 5 minutes from my house. NATURALLY, for the sake of discovery and food blogs, I had to investigate! I was most curious about their Tahiti sweetie (butter/brown sugar base blondie with cashews, chocolate chunks, coconut, pineapple chunks) and although I got to sample (HEAVENLY), I was not able to purchase as they were running short on supplies. I bought a Nutty Blondie (blondie with pecans, almonds, cashews) and a bag of Auburn Chocolate brownie ends (espresso, walnuts, bittersweet chocolate). Quite, quite delicious, and quite, quite worth the indulgence.

Rainbow sherbert

Steak being seared for Beef Tenderloin with Ginger-Shiitake Brown Butter

I leave you with this recipe for some of the most flavorful, outrageously decadent steaks you will ever have. These steaks are marinated in a medley of Asian flavors, seared to retain a nice crust, and then baked in the oven to finish cooking. The juices are mixed with other flavorings to create a lovely sauce that is poured over. Enjoy!

  • 4 (8 ounce) steaks (the better the cut, better final product)
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons finely minced fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh shiitake mushrooms
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons sake (use Sherry if there is no Sake available)
  • 2 tablespoons mirin (Japanese sweet wine)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  1. Marinate steaks in a mixture of mirin, soy sauce, garlic powder, brown sugar for at least an hour, preferably longer.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  3. Season filets to taste with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a heavy, oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat until it begins to smoke. Sear steaks until golden brown on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer steaks to preheated oven, and cook for about 10 minutes, or to desired doneness. When the steaks are done, set aside to rest in a warm place while finishing the sauce.
  4. Meanwhile, melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the garlic and ginger, cook gently until fragrant and translucent, about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Add the shiitake mushrooms and 1/2 teaspoon salt, and cook until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Pour in sake and mirin; reduce by half.
  5. Stir in remaining 1/2 cup of butter. Once melted, reduce heat to medium-low and continue to cook until the butter turns a dark golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper, stir in chives. Serve sauce over steaks.

Sunday, December 9, 2007


After quite a long hiatus fueled by the loss of my digital camera, I am back with a vengeance and a vow to keep this updated far better than my last efforts. Since July, I have cooked & eaten numerous meals but have been unable to keep track of them. Tonight, in begging for your forgiveness, I bring you humble offerings from one of my longstanding favorite restaurants, and one of my new.

Otani (
Founded 29 years ago in Mayfield Heights as the first restaurant in Ohio to serve sushi, Otani has since opened two other restaurants in Akron and Columbus. They serve excellent Japanese food, from super fresh sushi and juicy pork tonkatsu to deliciously soup-y house ramen and crispy, light tempura. The service is always fantastic, so don't let the offbeat location in an office building off of 161 deter you... it's definitely worth it. Excuse the poor photo quality as the lighting was a bit off... or you could blame the photographer ;)

California Roll $3.95

Pork Cutlet with rice, salad & miso soup $14.95

Sushi Rice

Tasi Cafe (
The other restaurant I want to tell you about is a new opening in a familiar spot. Located where the old Pistachio Bakery used to be before their rebirth as Pistacia Vera, this tiny spot has seating for about 10-15 people, but again don't let that deter you. Their food is quite worth any wait you might have, but if that is a big issue with you there is always the carryout option. They serve breakfast all day, and also have some delicious sounding heartier options. My partner in foodcrimes and I devoured an order of sausage gravy & biscuits, sourdough pancakes with sweet n' spicy bacon, a chocolate croissant, and a glass of fresh squeezed orange juice, and were still hankering to try more of their creations. Their moderate prices are also a nice touch!

Sourdough pancakes with sweet and spicy bacon $7.00

Biscuits and Sausage gravy $6.00

I hope this is enough to satisfy your hunger til next time!