Bella Aquila Restaurante in Eagle, ID sponsored the 3 Horse Ranch Vineyards wine dinner. A full 6 course dinner was served with as many 3 Horse Vineyards wines. The participation was superb and the crowd enjoyed themselves. It was good to see the Cunninghams again – it has been a while. They are the owners of the winery. Also they have added Brandon St-Martin to their staff as the winery manager. Just look at this menu. (You can Left-Click any of these photos to see them enlarged.)
Second time we have been here, not counting take-out, and we are still very happy with the food, the Sushi Chefs and the Waite Staff. Definitely 5-Stars for Boise. Superb.They are located at 7107 W State Street (at Glenwood). (208) 853-4993. Look for their webpage at Sakana Sushi Boise. They also have an Extensive Menu, which might be wise to look at before going, to see what they have to offer. Thanks Marnie for joining us!
From their website, “In far Eastern countries, such as China, Japan and Korea, fish have always been used to symbolize for harmony, wealth and the freedom to live as one wishes.
Over here, it is known that healthy eating and the art of the oriental cuisine have been extended to the fullest. Our restaurant, Sakana, is using the finest raw material, as well as an exquisite way of cooking. Please experience the essence of a mysterious world of oriental food while you are enjoying your time here at Sakana. It will bring you a great amount of surprise and happiness.” Here is what we had. Enjoy!
Visit The Melting Pot in Boise for a fun dinner or Happy Hour. Good food with a fun presentation. And yes, the kids are welcome! 4-Star restaurant in Boise. And here is a link to their extensive Fondue Menu. Check it out! More importantly, I think, is “just what is a fondue?”
According to the Cambridge dictionary, “a hot dish prepared by keeping a container of either hot oil or melted cheese over a flame at the table and putting pieces of meat in the oil to be cooked or pieces of bread into the cheese.”
And from Justhungry.com, “In Switzerland, ‘la fondue’ means a cheese fondue and nothing else. Other types of dip-bits-of-food-in-a-communal-pot dishes are specifically called fondue-something, e.g. fondue bourgignonne (bits of beef filet fried in a pot of oil), fondue chinoise (thin slices of beef or other things cooked in a pot of broth), and so on.”
The cheese fondue at The Melting Pot consists of, “CLASSIC ALPINE – rich, sweet-yet-earthy
Featured Cheeses: Gruyère, Raclette, Fontina. Melted with: White wine, garlic, fresh nutmeg. Gluten Free $8.95” Delcicous. Here is what we had to complete this 4-Star evening. Enjoy!
We’ve not been out to Parma Ridge Winery and Restaurant for their Friday Happy Hour until last night. Glad we went. They are very busy, so if you have a crowd of more than four, it’s best to call ahead. The patio is open and a large part of it is covered.The menu may also be somewhat different than the Saturday or Sunday Brunch menus. Check the link above for the available menus or look at This Weekend at Parma Ridge to see the menu varieties for at least one of the weekends. Whenever you go, and I highly suggest this 5-Star winery and restaurant, you will be treated to some awesome wines and definitely some awesome food as prepared by Chef Storm and Sous Chef Megan. The Staff in the restaurant has grown! They have added Sous Chef Megan and service Staff. Our server Tammy was excellent. Thank-You! Here is some of the Happy Hour food that was at our table. We did not eat all of this as Fred and Dottie Christensen joined us. Good to see friends there. Enjoy! We did.
We did have wine. A wonderful blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot that paired wonderfully with asparagus. (Robin tried the newest rage of vanilla ice cream in red wine. She tried it with this blend. Wasn’t bad! If you like Guinness and Ice Cream you will probably like this.) And then we had some –
2015 Chardonnay, $16.50
Fargo Farms – Snake River Valley
Everything you would expect from the terroir of the area, this dry Chardonnay is made with Chardonnay grapes from Fargo Farms and a touch of Gewürztraminer from Parma Ridge Vineyards. This wine has been created to preserve the intense flavors and aromas without any manipulation. Hints of grapefruit and rosemary compliment the tart finish to be enjoyed any time of the year.
2015 Dry Riesling, $16.50
Fargo Farms – Snake River Valley
Made with 100% Riesling, this dry wine features melon with citrus notes and touches of honey crisp apple. This smooth wine is a perfect complement creamy pasta and sharp cheeses. This also pared very well with asparagus. Hard to find a wine that pares well with asparagus or artichoke and maybe avocado.
Such a great evening at the winery and restaurant. Definitely 5-Stars!!!
Such a great weekend again working in the kitchen. Warm enough outside to keep the kitchen door open. We can still find fresh, as such, asparagus but watch the prices. I saw prices vary here in Boise from $2.99 a pound for medium sized spears – which I bought – to $8.99 a pound for the skinny little spears, which I did not buy. It’s either $8.99 a pound for skinny little asparagus spears or my meds for this month. I chose my meds. (This is week #6 past open heart surgery for me. Go Team!) So with that introduction, here are some photos, and recipes, for our culinary endeavors for this past weekend. Enjoy!
I don’t have any photos for these recipes, but the plates were delicious. We made a chicken and then prepared a Chicken Curry Salad with some of the left-overs. (The rest are used in chicken stock!) But for the dressing we used this recipe, and it is superb! Chicken Curry Salad Dressing The curry dressing calls for a chutney. We don’t have any in the house. Don’t fret! Here is our own recipe for the Apricot and Cranberry Chutney.
Chutneys, by nature are, “Chutney (Hindi/ Nepali – “चटनी” also transliterated chatney or chatni, Sindhi: چٽڻي) is a side dish in the cuisines of the Indian subcontinent that can vary from a tomato relish to a ground peanut garnish or a yoghurt, cucumber and mint dip…Major Grey’s Chutney is a type of sweet and spicy chutney popular in the United Kingdom and the United States. The recipe was reportedly created by a 19th-century British Army officer of the same name (likely apocryphal) who presumably lived in Colonial India. Its characteristic ingredients are mango, raisins, vinegar, lime juice, onion, tamarind extract, sweetening and spices. Several companies produce a Major Grey’s Chutney, in India, the UK and the US…The word “chutney” is derived from the Hindi word chatṭnī, meaning to lick. It is written differently in North and South Indian languages (Nepali: चटनी, Gujarati: ચટણી, Bengali: চাটনি, Marathi: चटणी, Punjabi: ਚਟਣੀ, Tamil: சட்டினி chaṭṭiṉi, காரத் துவையல் karathuvaiyal, Kannada: ಚಟ್ನಿ, Hindi: चटनी, Urdu: چٹنی, Sindhi: چٽڻي, Malayalam: ചട്ടിണി, chattin̩i, ചമ്മന്തി, Telugu: పచ్చడి). Pacchadi, as written in Telugu script, refers specifically to pickled fruits, whilst chutney refers to minced foods, usually made out of coconuts.
In India, “chutney” refers to fresh and pickled preparations indiscriminately. Several Indian languages use the word for fresh preparations only. A different word achār (Hindi: अचार) applies to pickles that often contain oil and are rarely sweet.” [Wikipedia]
Our chutney, is but one of many variations of chutney. Ours is not cooked. Think of chutney as jerk sauce or sofrito, “…Italian soffritto, the Spanish sofrito, from Portuguese-speaking nations refogado (braised onions, garlic and tomato), the German Suppengrün (leeks, carrots and celeriac), the Polish włoszczyzna (leeks, carrots, celery root and parsley root), the U.S. Cajun and Creole holy trinity (onions, celery and bell peppers), and the French duxelles (onions, shallots, and mushrooms, sauteed in butter). Or Cajun Trinity – they can all vary from kitchen to kitchen. Fun stuff!
Now this is a great twist on Eggs Benedict. Instead of Hollandaise Sauce, use a Béarnaise Sauce. This is one of the sauces that you should have in your recipe box, or book, or file or pocket. Basically a Hollandaise Sauce, but with the addition of tarragon – lots of tarragon – and diced shallots. Hollandaise Sauce on Eggs Benedict or fresh steamed asparagus. Béarnaise Sauce on beef, salmon or these eggs. Enjoy! The photo here is to Parma Ridge Winery Bistro entrance. I bet if we talk nice, Chef Storm could/would try this. Hmmmmm!
Enrique’s Mexican Restaurant,482 W Main Street, Kuna, ID is by far one of the best, if not The Best, Mexican restaurant in the Boise/Kuna area. The name has changed from El Gallo Giro. Same people are operating the restaurant, just a name change. And I think the food has gotten better! Every bit of a 5-Star restaurant! A great place for the entire family. But be aware – They get very, very busy, so it might be best to call for reservations, especially if you are going to be there on Friday or Saturday or Sunday around 4:00 in the afternoon and later. (208) 922-5169. Look at what we had. Enjoy! Left-Click any of these photos to see them enlarged.
Will we go back? Absolutely! The quality of the food is far better than it was. Well worth the trip, folks! Let us know when you are going and we’ll try to join you.
Well, not all attempts at “kitchen craft” are successful. This is just one case …. there are many. I just wanted to post this one so you know that we do fail, sometimes! This recipe, Asian Grilled Salmon and Marinade, inspired by Ina Garten, to us is way to salty. I used Shoyu Soy Sauce and I think she used Kikkoman Soy Sauce. I added 1 more Tablespoon of mustard than she had. Those are the only differences. Potentially really a good recipe. I will have to work on it to lower the salt.
We had a great experience and meal last night at the Vietnamese restaurant, Pho Nouveau, 780 W Idaho Street, Boise; (208) 367-1111 and they do take reservations. Really a superb meal. Good to meet our friend, Patty Dorr there and to have a meal with her. Good ambiance in the restaurant; good service without being “pushy”. Here is their website. Just Click This Link. There are downloadable menus on their website for you to printout or just look at. You will get a good idea of what they offer. Weather permitting, they do have a patio for your use. The parking garage is right across the street. Here is what we had and it was all good. Cheers! We will return to Pho Nouveau! On TripAdvisor I rated this restaurant 5-Stars. Which was the best appetizer or entree? Actually, they were all good – I would have any of them again!
Oh yes! ‘Tis the season for crab. At least the season for Blue Crab – if you can find them. (see photo below) No, that is a Dungeness crab pictured here. I suppose if you had to, you could use the Dungeness. So a little twist on the standard apple, or fruit, strudel. Let’s try a Crab Strudel with a Salmon Pasta Salad. Robin directed me on how to make the salad. It’s one she “dreamed” up. There is no recipe as such.
For the strudel, probably the most difficult part is finding the garlic scapes. What? From Mother Earth News,
…The scapes are the flower stems that garlic plants produce before the bulbs mature. Growers often remove the scapes to push the plant’s energy toward bigger bulbs, and when harvested while they are young and tender, the scapes are delicious.
And from About (dot) com,
Many gardeners simply toss their scapes in the compost, but garlic scapes are both edible and delicious, as are the bulbils. Along the same lines, young garlic plants that are pulled to thin a row are referred to as “green garlic”. Used in the same manner as green onions, these too make excellent eating.
Here is how we made the Crab Strudel. You can get the recipe above. Cheers and have fun with this.
And if you wanted to know more about strudel – inquiring minds need to know, Wikipedia says,
The best-known strudels are Apfelstrudel (German for apple strudel) and Topfenstrudel (with sweet soft quark cheese, in Austrian German Topfen), followed by the Millirahmstrudel (Milk-cream strudel, Milchrahmstrudel). Other strudel types include sour cherry (Weichselstrudel), sweet cherry, nut filled (Nussstrudel), Apricot Strudel, Plum Strudel, poppy seed strudel (Mohnstrudel), and raisin strudel. There are also savoury strudels incorporating spinach, cabbage, pumpkin, and sauerkraut, and versions containing meat fillings like the (Lungenstrudel) or (Fleischstrudel).
Traditional Hungarian, Austrian, and Czech strudel pastry is different from strudels elsewhere, which are often made from puff pastry. The traditional strudel pastry dough is very elastic. It is made from flour with a high gluten content, water, oil and salt, with no sugar added. The dough is worked vigorously, rested, and then rolled out and stretched by hand very thinly with the help of a clean linen tea towel or kitchen paper. Purists say that it should be so thin that you can read a newspaper through it. A legend has it that the Austrian Emperor’s perfectionist cook decreed that it should be possible to read a love letter through it. The thin dough is laid out on a tea towel, and the filling is spread on it. The dough with the filling on top is rolled up carefully with the help of the tea towel and baked in the oven.