This past weekend I went down to Richmond Virginia to visit my sister. First I need to say that Richmond is a great food and beer city. There are numerous bars and restaurants with great food and drink. Before going down to Richmond I did some research looking for a few restaurants to check out and I stumbled across En Su Boca, a taqueria and cantina that just opened up a few weeks ago. The name is Spanish for “in your mouth” and pokes fun at the fact that the building that now houses En Su Boca used to be a notorious adult bookstore.
We got to En Su Boca around 1130 for an early lunch. Their menu is simple but the food is high quality and very delicious. My sister and I ordered chicken, carne asada, carnitas, chorizo, and fish tacos. The tacos were incredible. Each one tasted fresh and you could tell that the chefs took their time on constructing the recipe for each taco. My favorite was the carne asada taco followed closely by the fish taco. We also got a side of drunken beans and chips and salsa. The chips came with three different kinds of salsa; a pico de gallo, tomatillo salsa, and a habanero salsa. The habanero salsa had a good sweetness then finished with quite the kick. My favorite salsa was the tomatillo salsa. The service was superb, the wait staff were very friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful and answered any questions we had about the menu.
If you find yourself in Richmond I highly recommend checking En Su Boca out, you wont be disappointed! You can find their a link to their website and facebook page below.
Last Saturday I was out in Philly and found myself at Pat’s Steaks after the bars. I haven’t had a cheese steak in a while and forgot how good they are. Pat’s is my personal favorite out of the big name places in Philly. I highly suggest you stop by and give this classic a try. Can’t go wrong with Wiz Wit.
Philly Beer Week starts today and runs through June 9th. During this time you will be able to sample all types of beers at different venues throughout the city and surrounding suburbs. You can find the full schedule for Philly Beer Week Here. I have only lightly glanced over the calender of events but there are a few that I am trying to make. On June 6th at Issac Newton’s in Newtown, PA the is a Founders tap takeover. Founders makes some great brews, two of my favorite are their all day IPA and their Kentucky breakfast stout. As I attend Philly Beer Week events I will write posts about the beers and the breweries. This should be a fun week and I can’t wait to try some new beers.
This past weekend my sister graduated from Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA.On Saturday night my family and I went to the Boiling Springs Tavern for Dinner. Located about 10 minutes away from Carlisle Boiling Springs gets its name from the natural artesian wells that are located near the town. The largest of these springs is located right behind the Boiling Springs Tavern and is nicknamed the bubble.
The food at the Boiling Springs Tavern is very good and the service is even better. They focus on serving local fare and along with their daily menu rotate in daily specials. To start we ordered the seared tuna, smoked trout and salmon, baked oysters, and buffalo calamari. For being in the middle of Pennsylvania I was very impressed with how good the seared tuna turned out. The sliced it very thin and served it almost like sashimi with a pickled coleslaw. The smoked salmon and trout paired well with each other and were served with bread and various spreads and toppings. The baked oysters were topped with a small slice of smoked salmon and a dill cream. The baked oysters change daily but if the are as good as the ones we were served I would recommend ordering them.
After the appetizers we were served our soups or salads. The seafood bisque is absolutely delicious and I recommend ordering it. It is on the lighter side and will not fill you up like a chowder tends to do, which will allow you to enjoy your entrees.
I ordered the Stuffed Rainbow Trout special. It was a pan cooked rainbow trout stuffed with crab imperial. Everything was cooked to perfection and it tasted great. If I ever saw this on the menu again I would order it in a heart beat.
My sister ordered an Asian inspired pork tenderloin. I did not get a chance to taste it but the presentation was impressive.
If you every find yourself in the Carlisle area I recommend stopping by the Boiling Springs Tavern for lunch or Dinner.
I’m headed up to Toronto, Canada for the weekend so there will be no posts over the next few days. However Toronto is an incredible food city so I will be doing a recap of all the bars and restaurants I go to once I get back. I am also looking to find some inspiration for some new dishes too. Enjoy your weekend and have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Tonight I continued my series in cooking with beer. The beer featured in this recipe is the Blue Heron pale ale from the Mendocino Brewing Company in Saratoga Springs, NY. I chose their pale ale because I thought its flavor would work better with chicken. Their beer is also great for drinking. The pale ale very good but my favorite beer the have is the red tail ale.
The recipe for the sauce has the same proportions for many of the other pan sauces I have made. You can get creative and switch out different ingredients to build new flavors. Their pale ale and the bacon in this sauce worked great with each other and built a very complex flavor into the sauce. You can also use this sauce with beef or pork. However if you are making it for beef substitute beef broth for the chicken broth. You can find the recipe below as well as a link to the Mendocino Brewing Company’s website.
Week three of the cooking class focused on game birds like duck, pheasant, and quail. At the beginning of the class the Chef talked us through all the different kinds of game birds and how their tastes differ. The techniques for breaking down the game birds were the same as the techniques we learned in week one with the chicken. I impressed myself and remembered the proper way to cut a bird in the European style. The dish I decided to cook was the Margret De Canard Au Poivre Vert, which is a pan cooked Muscovy duck with a green peppercorn cream sauce.
I chose this dish becasue I wanted to properly learn how to cook a duck. The most important lesson I learned is that you cook duck until it has the correct look, no need to stick to a certain time just cook it until your duck skin has a nice golden brown. In order to ensure proper cooking you must first heat a pan over high heat. Then rub oil, such as peanut or canola oil, and salt and pepper on duck. Once pan is heated place duck in pan, keep it at high heat until the edges of skin turn golden brown ~3-4 min. Turn down heat and continue to render the fat out of the duck. As more fat renders out of the duck feel free to drain the pan and keep duck fat to the side. As the duck is cooking take a spoon and pour rendered fat from pan over the duck to start to cook the opposite side. Once the skin side has reached your desired color and crispiness, flip the duck over and cook 1~2 min then remove from pan
I had sticky toffee pudding the first time I went to England and it quickly became on of my favorite desserts. This recipe is a bit more advanced. The toffee sauce and the creme anglaise take a lot of attention while preparing them, but in the end it is all worth it. This dish is extremely rich and is great for a special occasion. Each part of this dessert can be made in advance and warmed up when ready to serve. The recipe for the sticky toffee pudding is below. I found the recipe for the vanilla creme anglaise in the book Modern Sauces, a cook book which I highly recommend picking up. Enjoy this one, after making it once it has instantly become a go to dish.