• Eyes on Fire - Blue Foundation
  • Rooster - Alice in Chains
  • Jigsaw Falling into Place - Radiohead
  • Quien Fuera - Silvio Rodriguez
  • La Tortura - Shakira

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Pleasantly surprised - great food

Today Aparna and I ended up at the flying biscuit while scouring the streets for some light none-too-expensive food on our way back from Trader Joe's. The restaurant wasn't officially open yet. They were having a 'friends & family' night where the staff (service and kitchen) was to 'practice' their dishes on 'friends and family'. The food was free.

Our friendly waitress Carissa explained that they were not open to the public but still snuck us in as her friends for the night. We were quite taken by the warmth and also by the place. Given that it was practice night, they had a restricted menu and the only things on offer were dishes they were still perfecting.

The menu featured more than a few vegetarian options and if you ate eggs, you had an incredible array of choices before you. We tried the black-bean cakes with green salsa, hummus and sun-dried tomato wrap and a tofu-potato salad. All three were delicious - right out of the top drawer. The salad in particular was spicy (still can't believe it) and all the dishes didn't have any pretentions about them - fresh ingredients and no compromises when it came to taste and condiments (there was plenty of high quality sour cream and cheese).

We were delighted with our visit on all counts. We left a $20 tip since the food came at no cost. I've spent well over fifty bucks for food that didn't taste half as good. On the whole - a very highly recommended eat for vegetarians.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The bald man's chocolates

Aparna called me a couple of days back from NY to announce that she was about to have dessert at a very special place in Manhattan. She wanted to know the name of one of my favorite desserts (if done right) - the Chocolate Souffle. I felt a shade of envy - but hey, those are the perks of travel. I've had my share. I had the best damn chocolate souffle at Amorio in Santiago. So, I didn't let it bother me too much.

Of course, today when Aparna announced that she had something for me - I was pretty sure what it was. She was surprised that I wasn't surprised that she got me something - but knowing her, she could not have gone to a specialty chocolate store without getting me something. Anwyays, she got me a set of assorted truffles that she picked for me.

Now, I'm not such a big truffle fan - as I feel my palate is much too numb to appreciate subtlety in texture and taste. I crave pure, smooth, dark chocolate paired with strong flavors like orange zest, spices and more recently cognac & whiskey - it tastes surprisingly good. The whiskey doesn't come on as strongly as the cognac (at least with the one I tasted) but complements the chocolate beautifully.

Anwyays, getting back to the truffles from Max Brenner's - I was to begin the most satisfying chocolate tasting experience so far in my life. The creations were truly exquisite and reposed faith in my tastebuds because I could close my eyes and taste all the subtle flavors. My favorites were lemon peel, dulce de leche & whiskey and hazelnut all with dark-chocolate. It was incredible. I was thrilled and hooked. Unless she goes back to that store, I'm ordering these killers online.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Vinayaka Chaturthi

We celebrated Vinayaka Chaturthi this year - once again featuring Aparna's hand-crafted Vinayaka from atta flour and turmeric. We also used flowers from our own garden.