Martha Stewart, the quintessential homemaker, will be gracing Dallas with her presence tomorrow. She’ll be signing copies of her new book, Martha’s Entertaining: A Year of Celebrations at Williams-Sonoma NorthPark at 1 pm. This coffee table tome might weigh as much as a small child, but the inspiring photography and 100 pages of enticing recipes make the weight (and price tag—$75) well worth it. Give it as a gift this holiday season, or keep it for your own entertaining endeavors. It’s a “good thing.” Get more details about the event here. – Bailey Powell2 Comments »
D Magazine’s Loren Means loves to watch Top Chef. Therefore, she volunteered to watch all of the episodes this season and write a recap. She’s a Texan, and she’s on Texan stereotype alert. Go, Loren.
I, personally, could have done without the first two episodes required to wrangle out the 13 weaker chefs. It’s just too exhausting. I prefer to start off with the rock stars and get the show on the road. Alas, no one consulted me prior to filming/editing so this is how it was done, and we have had to endure it. Episode three begins and we finally have the 16 chefs who will actually be competing for the title of Top Chef. In no particular order, other than Keith, whom I will list first because he is my favorite, we have Keith, Richie, Lindsay, Edward, Heather, Ty-lor (whom I will now refer to as Ty because they do on the show and now I won’t have to figure out how to make those two dots over the O), Beverly, Chris J., Grayson, Paul (resident Texan), Sarah, Chris C., Dakota, Nyesha, Chuy, and Whitney.
Jump to see what happens.9 Comments »
Jon over at TJ’s Fresh Seafood just let us know about two stuffings that have me counting the days until next Thursday. First he’s making an oyster stuffing, which is a simple affair with white & corn bread mixed with plump oysters and herbs and which he says he grew up eating back home in Virginia. Second is his crawfish & andouille cornbread stuffing, which he’s been making on the sly for a few customers every year and is finally making available to everyone.
Sounds great! But in all fairness, I’ll probably still make my own. It’s simple, it involves stale bread and chicken broth, and makes me feel like I’m eight years old and hanging out in my grandmother’s kitchen.
How about you? Will you be trying something fancy? ordering out? or making a family specialty?
I’m pretty excited for this Saturday’s festivities downtown. City Lights kicks off. I’ve been watching more than 3,000 lights be strung, orbs be placed, and tubes be constructed in the Neiman windows for the past couple weeks. I’m just waiting for all of it to light up. After you watch the tree be lit, Santa make his appearance, and the finale at AT&T, support some of the restaurants downtown. A lot of them are offering some discounts. And then there’s Wild Salsa, which is giving 30 prizes of free food for a year. Winners get $25 a week for 52 weeks to spend on food. (Trust me, you can go to Wild Salsa and get dinner for two for that much. I suggest the Ensalada Mexicana.) Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and explain why you love downtown. (If you don’t have any ideas, I can give you a few.) Include your name, number, and email. They’ll randomly draw the winners.
Other discounts for Saturday only:
* Wild Salsa, Dallas Chop House, Dallas Fish Market: 20 percent off food
* Iron Cactus: $5 hot chocolate infused with Rumpleminz
* Ravenna: Children under 10 get a free pasta dish; accompanying adult must purchase entrée
* The Joule: complimentary hot chocolate, hot cider, popcorn, and cookies
I can’t believe this guy can’t find a red-sauce-centric Italian restaurant in Dallas but he claims he can’t. Well, a good one anyway. He whines:
Nancy, I hope you can ask your readers help me. I used to love Il Sorrento in Dallas. Since they closed I haven’t been able to find a good decent marinara sauce in Dallas. I like baked pastas like ziti. Delivery would be good. I live near White Rock. Thanks.
Baked ziti? I’m still looking for the DiPalma’s recipe for chicken lasagna. Y’all hit it.21 Comments »
Barbecue is a “cuisine” that attracts a peculiarly conservative following. If an establishment chops rather than slices brisket, ‘Cue Heads are roll. The act of applying sauce on the meat rather than on the side is enough to cast the establishment out of consideration as a true Texas barbecue joint. This is a cuisine where preserving authenticity never means ossifying the status quo.
Enter Off The Bone Barbeque on Lamar just south of the Dallas Convention Center (no relation to the identically named establishment in Forest Hill, TX), which did both these things when it opened in 2009. That ruled them out of consideration for many serious “barbequefiles.” Maybe this reaction explains why they have mended their ways. Brisket can now be ordered sliced with sauce on the side. Not much else has changed. The brisket still goes into the pecan wood-fired smoker about 5pm and cooks until about 7am. The pork ribs are still baby back ribs (not the less expensive spare ribs). They cook for about five hours and are then wrapped in foil to cook for about one additional hour with a coating of sauce to resolve the flavors. The sausage is filled with beef and nothing else. The sides and the dessert are all made in house.
If you think the “eat local” trend has nothing but upside, read Steve “Freakonomics” Sexton’s take on “The Ineffeciency of Local Food.” Time to start buying your groceries at Walmart again?6 Comments »
An eagle-eyed Disher sends word: the signage at Four Sister’s Café in Richardson has been changed to read “Texas.” The restaurant, owned by Del Frisco’s founder Dale Wamstad, opened last June. I called the restaurant to get details. A nice lady answered the phone and I asked her about the change. However, as soon as I identified myself, she hung up on me. Mr. Wamstad does not like food critics. And I’m pretty sure he didn’t like what Sarah Reiss wrote about Four Sisters. Maybe Texas will be different. The name has a certain ring to it. Texas.10 Comments »
Tomorrow this man will be unemployed. The man, chef Asdren Azemi, is closing Ruffino’s, the Italian restaurant opened by his father twenty years ago. Something tells me this man won’t be without a job long.
Azemi has worked at Ruffino’s since he was five. He swept the floors. Eventually he became a dishwasher. “I liked the dish-washer position the best, because there was no where to go but up,” Azemi says. (Guess sweeping was a glam job in those days.) At sixteen, he was cooking. After college he attended the French Culinary Institute in NYC.
Closing Ruffino’s is sad. Why, Chef Azemi? “It’s time to move forward and try something fresh…something new!” Chef Asdren says. “My Father created a staple on this quiet street. I enjoyed taking over and adding my own touches to his classic dishes, but now it’s time for me to create my own staple.”
Is he going into office supplies? “I’m currently working on several projects that I can’t speak about just yet,” he says. “However, I very much look forward to sharing more details when the time is right. I think many people will get to enjoy my new initiatives.”
I quite like the look of this man’s future.1 Comment »