French lunch.
Le sandwich is a very popular option for lunch in France, but of course a boulangerie or patisserie will serve French staples in addition to the American invasion. (And, of course, France has its own take on what should really be in a sandwich.) Visiting St. Honoré on Division St. brought me back to the European lifestyle. Emily and I ordered our food and sat at a tiny round table by the window. I sipped on my espresso and we chatted for a long while. It was fun and relaxing! I tried the vent-au-vol which is basically a pastry with filling--in this case it was chicken and mushroom with a creamy sauce. To finish it off, I had a tarte citron--lemon tart. Classic. So delicious! And decadent. Definitely not something I can do every day, but as a treat it was magnifique!

February 17, 2016

So, I love biscuits. I've always known this--to some degree--but biscuit-making nor eating has ever been a constant in my life. This may be do to the fact that I don't live in the south, or that my mom is super health-conscious and avoids high-cholesterol treats to the Nth degree so she never made them while I was growing up. Biscuits with breakfast in Vermont and Connecticut aren't really accessible. But in Portland. Ahh, dear, dear Portland. Biscuits are a staple.

I am so on board with this trend. Today, Anna and I went to Screen Door for brunch, and I got a fried chicken sandwich with gravy in a biscuit. And a side of potatoes. It was one of the most beautiful/satisfying/magical meals I've ever had, and I'm not even exaggerating. It was truly up there. The spiced rum hot apple cider we had with our meal complimented the food perfectly. And the conversation about France, Chicago, and Irish Catholicism was a pleasure as well. :)

Spiced Rum Hot Apple Cider
(Olympia, WA apple cider, spired rum, whipped cream, & cinnamon)

 January 3, 2016

Portland, Oregon is split into two seasons: rain and summer. I'll just say this--currently, it is not summertime. So, during this cold and dreary and wet season, what is the best kind of food to eat? Soup, obviously. Something warm, filling, and nutritious. I should probably mention that as a part of moving to a new city, I'm being intentional about trying new things, especially food. I've not had much experience with Vietnamese cuisine, so when Emma and Aaron invited me to grab a bite of the traditional soup dish, Pho (pronounced "feh"), on a particularly drippy day, I said yes.

Yo, Pho is delicious. And super healthy. You feel like you can climb mountains after eating it. It has noodles and veggies and it is topped with fresh basil and bean sprouts. You can choose whichever protein you want with it, but some form of beef is most common.

We went to Pho Gia--1944 NE Sandy--and it was welcoming, affordable, and had GIGANTIC portions. Mango sticky rice and Vietnamese coffee are also on the menu, which I couldn't find room for last time, but will definitely try the next time we go.

November 23, 2015

Thai food reunion
I love pad see ew with tofu. Ever since Simply Thai in Oneonta, NY opened during my years at Hartwick, I've gone mad for this perfectly simple dish. It's just noodles, some greens, tofu, and sauce, but it's the thing I missed most when I was abroad. It's not really pad see ew I love--I've tried it at other Thai restaurants. I love Simply Thai's version specifically. If you're ever around, call me and I'll join you for lunch or dinner any day of the week (except for Wednesdays when they're closed).

August 22, 2014

Party of 1
Sometimes I feel like cooking myself good food. Guess what's delicious? Avocados. And tomatoes. And eggs. And toast. I made myself a cheese omelet and some quickly sautéed veg and toast for dinner a couple of nights ago. And basically I'm really happy with how it turned out. I usually cook good meals when I dine with others, but it's important to cook for yourself, too. What have you made for yourself recently?

June 22, 2015

Group-effort dinners
Recently, Katya moved into the flat and Nadia has been staying with us as well.  We've made several meals together, and basically it's been really fun! One night we made a chickpea and sausage stir-fry over rice; another time we had taco night with Jenny; and just recently we had chicken and green beans with garlic-cheese (Boursin) mashed potatoes, as well as Tiramisu gelato for dessert, with Michelle, an au pair from Australia! I love cooking with and for people--I hardly ever put this much effort into my own meals. I'm really happy to be eating so well--surrounded by lovely people.

April 19, 2014

Just another home-cooked meal in Nice...
Most of my cooking incorporates some sort of pasta as it's fast and cheap. But every so often I get inspired and cook a full meal. Here's an example of something I might cook for myself:

I sautéed onions with sausage, tomatoes, and dried garlic, and served that over rice.  And of course it wouldn't be dinner in France without half a baguette.
March 18, 2015 

Emilie's Cookies
This is my new favorite place to go in Nice. There are three locations (I've checked out two) and they're reassuringly similar to cafés in the US. Order at the front, sit on a comfy couch in the back, sip coffee, eat dessert. Lovely. If you live in Nice and have not yet been, I suggest you go. Also, if you want someone to tag along with you, I will join!

Nutellaccino (macchiato w/Nutella) and blueberry cheesecake. Yum.

February 23, 2015

Thanksgiving 2014
This was so fun. Basically we lecteurs had our own Thanksgiving potluck at Amy and Becca's flat. Everyone chipped in, made delicious food, and was eager to contribute. The Brits + Christoph learned a thing or two about traditional Thanksgiving dinner (what dishes are appropriate/required). We ate lots, played games, and gave thanks. There wasn't a giant turkey (as the French groceries don't start supplying whole turkeys until around Christmas time), but it still felt like Thanksgiving nonetheless.

Thanksgiving Pot
French people don't typically celebrate Thanksgiving, but at the l'Université Nice - Fac de Lettres this past Tuesday, some did. The lecteurs (me and the others who do the same job as me) are responsible for organizing English Society, a club on campus that promotes English language and anglophone culture. So we threw a Thanksgiving pot, otherwise known as a a pot luck that included two rotisserie chickens, baguettes, cheese spread, sautéed veggies, green beans, carrots, chips, soda, and two homemade pies--one apple and one pecan! Oh, and of course we drew hand-turkeys! It was a very quaint, fun experience. We discussed Thanksgiving history and regional Thanksgiving dishes. And, of course, we ate.

November 27, 2014

Breakfast in America
There is nothing quite like an American diner. Breakfast served all day, bottomless drip coffee, a bright, comfortable atmosphere: it's quintessential American culture, and it's what I miss most when I'm abroad. Ellen and I went to Paris during Toussaint (a French/Christian holiday at the end of October), and we had lunch at Breakfast in America (B.I.A.) B.I.A. has the American diner thing down pat; I feel at home here. I actually frequented B.I.A. when I lived in Paris, since it always brought me the comfort I sought when I missed home. It's also delicious, affordable, and fun.

I had my usual--a cheddar omelette, homefries, and coffee. Ellen and Siri both ordered pancakes and split a basket of fries. Mmm. This restaurant will be a life-long favorite, I know it.
November, 9, 2014

Monaco Eats
So, I went to Monaco for the day with my new friend/flatmate, Raphaela. The bus fare was 1.50 euro, departing a block away from our flat (Nice and Monaco are near one another). Needless to say, we had a great time walking by the fancy hotels, the club of million dollar yachts, and the curvy streets in the old village. We dined near the yacht club and had a nice view of the water while we enjoyed our formule du midi--I had the fish with rice and tomatoes in a white wine sauce. Raphaela ordered the porc roti avec frites. It was a delicious lunch over great conversation--we discussed Jane Austen among other things. After walking around the city some more (we hiked up to the Palais Princier) we got coffees and some treats: I got a café au lait avec un macaron chocolat et un petit gateau chocolat. It was a very successful day for eating!

October 4, 2014

Beach Snacks

First of all, let reader know that I have found the best beer I've ever tasted. I didn't peg myself as a blonde beer enthusiast, but after you've tried the Belgian beer, Leffe, I think you'll understand. It's rich like a darker beer, but feels lighter on the gut. By rich, I mean complex. If I can invoke synesthesia, I will say that Leffe tastes like a day at the beach.
   ...It will be hard to know whether Leffe tastes like a day at the beach in its own right, or if my experience of drinking it at the beach has heavily influenced my understanding of its flavor. It doesn't matter. It's delicious, and is often waiting in the coolers of small groceries throughout Nice. Conveniently, it stays cool if you purchase it on your way to Opéra Plage, the main beach my new friends and I have frequented these past several weeks.
   Of course, the beach and beer is better with snacks. I invoke my Americanism and munch on potato chips to compliment sips from my can of Leffe during relaxing afternoons under the sun, trying to get comfortable on the stones that boarder the sea, chatting with the other lectrices, or reading.

September 30, 2014

Brazilian-French Fusion

I'm in Nice! It's been a whirlwind of two weeks, and I'm having a great time. One of the things I've learned about adulthood is that, basically, if you can figure out how to balance your savings on wine and food, you'll pretty much be okay. This past Sunday I made a feijoada-inspired dish. Feijoada is Brazil's national dish. Apparently the French aren't too keen on black beans; I couldn't find black beans in time to make the traditional legume and pork stew. So instead I sautéed some chorizo and French sausages, cooked some rice, and served that with orange slices, fried manioc, a small salad, some bread, camembert, and guarana (Brazilian soda found at the "Asian" market). A friend brought some crème de cassis as well. It was a Brazilian-French fusion, and it was quite delightful. I was glad to have a bunch of new friends over to my new flat and share one another's company over a good meal--a traditional I've picked up from living at Pine Lake. 
September 17, 2014

If you didn't know, Hannah Hart has published her first book. It's called My Drunk Kitchen, based on her YouTube show. I recently read the entire book and loved it. It's complex, fun, and insightful--rooted in food-making, it offers life advice. Sabrina--my sister--and I made a recipe out of the book called "Macaroni...pretzel...hand?" It's delicious. Check out the video we made!

August 22, 2014

Cheesecake at the Autumn Cafe in Oneonta, NY
A week ago, all the summer worker/research students at Pine Lake went out to lunch at the Autumn Cafe. I love the Autumn--the food is always delicious, and the atmosphere is unbeatable. Lunch there was a nice way to get together and admit that the summer (at least for Pine Lake) is over. Brian and I shared this Bavarian Cheesecake for dessert--so dense and scrumptious. A sweet ending to a great summer. <3

August 21, 2014

It happened. The food processor was casually sitting on the kitchen counter, Erin delivered walnuts to my house, my basil plants were heavy with leaves, and there was some extra parm in the fridge. Honestly, I'm just happy I did the thing I set out to do at the beginning of the summer. Internal checklist check off for the win.

August 13, 2014

Vacation Eats
My friends and I went on vacation to Vermont last weekend. It was fun to show Shannon and Molly around, see old friends, and eat good food. We went to a couple favorite haunts of mine when I lived in Manchester, and also discovered a new gem.

Stuffed Portobella from The Perfect Wife

These other dishes we ate at The Magnolia Bistro in Burlington, VT for a late lunch: Caprese salad, gluten-free pancakes and fruit, plus poached eggs with hash browns. It was a light and fresh meal.

July 26, 2014

Cookies Done Right
Last night the Farmhouse girls had a nice bonding party with homemade pita chips, South Sides, and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies. I copied down this recipe whilst living with my friend, Emily Lisborg, in 2012. It's a fairly impregnable recipe and the cookies are the perfect amount of chewy. I couldn't find any vanilla in the house, so I substituted the 1/2 teaspoon with our homemade Pine Lake maple syrup. So delicious. We girls listened to pop music, awkwardly bobbed along, took Buzzfeed quizzes, giggled, etc: exactly what comes to mind whenever I think of the concept "party."

July 15, 2014

Ramp Pesto

I couldn't wait any longer. I had to make some pesto. So I took the ramps my friend, Casey, had given me. And I roasted them. And then I puréed them in the blender. And added some almonds, parmesan cheese, olive oil, and garlic salt. Blended it all up. And got some pesto. It doesn't look like pesto, mostly because it's not green. But it tastes pretty good despite its appearance--it's full-bodied and nutty (I'm the type of person to use wine-tasting jargon whilst describing the flavor of my pesto experiments). It's kind of chunky, so it's more like a dip--I didn't want to use too much of our home's precious olive oil, hence the consistency. Boo yah! Hopefully I'll get the chance to make basil pesto later this season. IF ANYONE HAS BASIL IN BULK, I WILL GREATLY TAKE SOME OF IT. I could trade you poems or a cut of the final product. Fresh pesto is valuable, friends. Summer gold.
July 2, 2014

Basil Excursions

I bought a basil plant (actually two of them) from Annutto's on Route 7, Oneonta a couple of days ago. I've been meaning to make homemade pesto.

As of now, my plants don't have enough leaves to make a considerable amount of my fourth favorite food. So, a caprese salad will have to do in the interim.

I added a couple drops of balsamic vinegar and some garlic sea salt. Delicious.
June 27, 2014

I Finally Made Pie:

I've been meaning to make rhubarb pie for a week now. I threw together the crust a couple days ago after work. Some flour, salt, water, and butter was all it took. Retrospectively, perhaps I should have added some sugar. But taste-wise it turned out pretty well. This morning I was determined to finish this thing I'd set out to do, so I walked the couple yards outside and harvested several stalks of rhubarb and chucked their leaves in the compost. I chopped the rhubarb into bits, la la la, a couple other steps, and baked the baby at 475 degrees for 15 min, plus 350 degrees for forty minutes. Note: don't forget to add the bits of butter to the top of the pie. It makes a WORLD of difference. All-in-all, making this pie was a good practice in discipline and determination. I'm serious; I'm full of ideas and I execute nearly half of them. In other words, I'm damn proud of this pie. I made it! Yes, it tastes good. Also, it's cool that I used ingredients from the backyard. #sustainableliving, yo.
June, 12, 2014

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