The Newest Craze/Fad: Honey Creme – Soft Serve Ice Cream & Honey Comb

After our little romp around 西門町 Ximending we headed back near my hotel for the “famous” new “craze” Honey Creme.  Which is basically a soft serve in which you put honey comb on it.  You can also choose things like pound cake and stuff.

We opted for a cup and to share.  We also added an extra honey comb.  Which was smart since they were tiny little cubes.

It wasn’t anything really special.  I remember chewing and eating on honeycomb when I was a little kid living in New Mexico, yum.  The one good thing is that the soft serve is super creamy and not sweet at all on it’s own so that the honeycomb’s sweetness can balance it out.  It was interesting to try but not so sure why everyone has been going nutty over it.

店址:台北市大安區敦化南路一段169巷8號1樓D室
電話:(02)2740-7070
營業時間: 平日11:30- 21:30, 週末、假日前夕 11:30- 22:30

Legal’s with the Parents: Ordering off the Specials Menu

I love going out with my parents. We always have so much fun and being an only child and moving around all over the United States, I’m used to it.  Family vacations, dinners, etc.  Not hanging out with the fam all the time is just plain wrong and doesn’t feel right.  So after a long day of work.. it was time for some seafood.

Daddy started becoming a huge food picture-taker too… hahahah and taking goofy pictures of me.

We got a free Amuse Bouche from the chef.  Sun Dried Tomatoes with Bacon on Crostini with a drizzle of Balsamic Vinaigrette. Meh.

Two Buckets of Steamers!!!

CLEANED THEM OUT SO FAST

Not amused.

I got the Wild King Salmon with Spicy Sausage [Chorizo], a Corn/Black Bean Salsa on top of Butternut Squash.  It was sprinkled with scallions and was totally a Mexican wanna be dish.  It wasn’t bad but my salmon was overcooked and dry.  Everything else was delicious.

We also ordered a half a bottle of the red wine pairing to go with my dish to share with the table. I forgot what it was but it was good.

Daddy got a Herbed Flounder with a Slaw on top.

And mama got the Grilled Swordfish over Mashed Sweet Potato.

All of us got the specials of the night…

And then I saw this lady. CLASSY.

And since we ordered all specials we got the special dessert too.

YUM

The usual: Boston Cream Pie
Delicious as usual but I don’t remember it being COVERED in chocolate, just a thin film of it on top. Now it’s a bit too much.

The Special: Apple Pie Tart
It was okay.  The ice cream was good.

I also got a yummy Hot Toddy.

Feeling Frenchy….a quick Dinner at SDLT

French Tip Hello Kitty sort of Frenchy :]

I got some new kicks at Neiman Marcus :] Vera Wang Lavender <3 Gorgeous, sexy, I need to wear them ASAP!

Bought a little of this, a little of that, maybe a lot of things on sale at Williams Sonoma :] — totally Kitchen Porn… and then headed to my fav go-to spot for a quick bite of French Food right by my house!!!  Sel de la Terre – yep the place I always go to for Wine Tuesdays… today would just be a normal night :]

I started off with a few simple appetizers….

Charcuterie plate with duck liver terrine, pork rillette, crostini,
whole grain mustard, chutney

I LOOVED the Pork Rillettes.. usually they just have a Duck Liver Terrine on the menu but Rillettes?! YUMMMYYY my fav, well when done right and these were SOOOOO done right!!!…

Creamy lardo on top of the tender melt-in-your-mouth pork… MMMM… flavored so well and on my fav brioche toasts and crostinis they have there. HAPPY!!!… The Terrine was tasty as always :] Gherkin gherkins gherkins… crunch crunch…. and of course the much loved whole-grain mustard!

Salad du Jour: Greens, Pork Lardons & Duck Egg

LOOK AT THAT SEXY DUCK EGG!!!! SUPPPPPPPER RUNNY on top of super fresh greens and huge chunks of fried lardons underneath. OMG I LOVE YOU BACON!

Red wine braised beef short rib, roasted French radishes, celery root puree, onion strings

A little on the salty side but tender.. on top of super creamy celery root and of course happy crispy onion strings on top! Usually I have thinner onion strings but these were short, fat and still tasty!!! :]   Looooved the radishes!! I’m a huge radish person, not bitter at all, tender but still had a bit of a bite, snap and chew to it. Drank a little California Pinot Noir with this :] YUM!

Special du Jour: Bouillabaisse with Fluke, Shrimp, Clams, Mussels, Potatoes, Fennel, etc..

A nice creamy tomato saffron base… it was tiny tho.. wish it was bigger.. MOST of it was potatoes :[ WAA, I want more shellfish!  But the fluke was soooo tender and was actually a big piece, it was just a little bit smaller than the crostini on top!  Fat juicy shrimp… NOM NOM NOM… I love fennel! I got two glasses of this Chardonnay they recommended for me to pair with this dish.  I usually order red, but the white was good… with the bouillabaisse, alone it was a bit sweet.

Free Rosemary Frites thanks to Foursquare, per usual :]

I wasn’t planning on really eating much, get healthy, but OMG, their fries are always like best part of the meal!!!  Thin, crispy, perfectly fried, hot from the fryer and just enough salt and rosemary. HAPPPPPPPY

Dessert time!!!!…..

Apple Cider Beignets with Salted Caramel

CHUNKSSSSS of apple, FULL of apple cider flavor.. the caramel sauce was hot gooey and salty and perfection, I ended up licking the little bowl clean!  The beignets were SOOOOO good, tons of cinnamon sugar, PIPING HOT!!!.. it took awhile to get the dessert out, I was already done with half of my large Irish Coffee [you can see it’s butt in the above photo] and even tho I was stuffed, I finished the whole thing! LICK!

When I came home I tried out one of my new purchases from Williams Sonoma!

Gurgle gurgle

SOOO FUN :]

OH… and after all that wine I MAYYYY have made some crispy chicken skin and chicken dish from leftovers… onions, scallions and eggs included <3 MMM SUPPPPER crispy chicken skin <3

 

Lunch & Tea Set from Aunt Stella’s

I woke up super late.. exhausted.. especially from being out all day… and night and it was close to dinner time so I knew I needed a quickie snack before hand before I passed out… soooooo….

Aunt Stella’s Handmade Cookies & Cakes

I usually come here just for their waffles and cookies with my coffee/tea but today I needed some savory with my sugary sweet :]

Auntie Stella…

So is this Uncle Stella? Mr. Auntie Stella? TEE HEE…

We both got the Daily Set A which is Entree, Soup or Salad, Drink + Dessert! Perfection!

We waited… sipping on our waer glass.. and then the delicious piping hot bread came…

Smiles all around…

Oops wait, not that one ;] Besides puppy says “I’m NOT Bread!!!” But this is:

Scallion Bread

Crispy crunchy skin with delicious herbs and scallions sprinkled thru-out the innards of the fluffy white bread. OMG YUM!

Creamy Vegetable ChowderCreamy, light chowder with chunks of different garden vegetables and potatoes. YUM!

Garden Salad

Fresh and yummy with a light vinaigrette

燒烤風味牛肉佐南瓜燉飯/Pumpkin Risotto with Beef

Delicious creamy risotto… tender delicious beef and yummy steamed asparagus with a nice drizzle of delicious sauce over it.  Chunks of pumpkin in the yummy orange rice… which was a lot lighter than regular risotto I get in the States, uuber yummy!

凱薩沙拉 烤雞腿/Caesar Salad w/ Roasted Chicken 

Fresh romaine and other greens… crunchy yummy croutons, a nice boiled egg, a sprinkle of parm and roasted dark meat chicken [with skin] – honestly it’s SO rare to eat white meat/chicken breast here in Taiwan lol, Asians love their juicy fatty dark meat – and chicken skin :] TEE HEE.

Super Anchovy Caesar Dressing

Love caesar dressing, love anchovies but all together this was too overpoweringly fishy for me!

Dessert Time…

詩特莉有機咖啡/Stella’s Organic Coffee

咖啡榛果捲/Coffee Roll Cake

Dense with coffee cream and a firm hazelnut spread.  The outter cream had a chocolate nib and coffee sauce drizzled over it.  The cake was way too dense for our liking and tasted a bit like it’s been in the fridge a little too long… so we just ate the cream :] But then after my choice of the pomelo cake, anything wouldn’t taste as good :]

柚子優格捲/Pomelo Roll Cake
SOOOO delicious! This was my very favorite.. one of the tastiest fluffiest creamy cakes I’ve had in awhile :] Full of yummy pomelo flavor. Oh so light. SO different from the coffee cake roll… fluff fluff mmmmm I could eat a whole roll of this <3

Osteria Morini, Best Way To Complete a Day of FUN

Monday night, a friend was in town for work from Cali, so we all decided to hit up another Michael White baby.. Osteria Morini… Yep, just the night before we were at Marea and a few days before that, we were at Ai Fiori :]  After a long day of shopping, eating at DD, Dim Sum Go Go and Xi’An Famous Foods [omg Cumin Lamb Noodles are TO DIE FOR! – YOOO Hand Pulled NOODLES!!!]

  
  

Click here to see my Video of making Hand-Pulled Noodles @ Xi’An

Tons of shopping bags, a full belly, too much walking and a bottle of champagne in us later…. we got ready for another Chef White dinner – woot woot! 3 Michael White restos in a week?! AWESOME!


Me and Rhino.

Famous Celebrity Penis and Boob wall next to Osteria Morini – teehee…


Their sign actually reminds me of Yakitori Totto‘s :]

After sitting down at a table in the back near the kitchen we ordered a bottle of wine [and then another since it was so yummy] and picked out a slew of delicious yummies…

We were first greeted with a complimentary dish from the Chef.

Carciofo Fritelle
Artichoke, Chickpeas, Red Pepper, Nepitella Crema

Basically a chickpea veggie fritter or croquette minus the potatoes — Delicious, light, fluffy – full of creamy chickpea flavor and hints of artichoke and peppers.. delish!  Fried to perfection and over a drizzle of Nepitella cream on the bottom…. Nepitella is a wild herb of the Mint family grown in Italy

Battilardo Di Affetatti
Cured Sliced Meats with Grilled Bread & Tigelle Modenese
FegatiniDuck Liver Mousse, Passito Wine
Coppa Cured Pork Neck
& LardoProsciutto Bianco
The liver was TO die for and definitely the hit of the night for the charcuterie.  Creamy, full of flavor and paired SO well with the nice crunchy grilled bread.  The white round disks were flat fluffy bread.. I preferred the grilled crostinis though.  The coppa was salty, porky and full of flavor.  A nice balance of meat and fat… delicious.. and of course, the lardo, the fat, sliced super thin I could’ve eaten it all straight, but instead daintily placed it on my crostini and nibbled like a lady :]

Spiedini Per La Tavola: Assorted Skewers Alla Piastra
MaialeSausage, Sweetbread, Zucchini, Cauliflower, Tomato
LumacheGrilled Snails Wrapped in Rosemary Lardo

The sausage was delicious… which was a blend of lamb and pork…. the sweetbread was a tiny piece but perfectly cooked… the zucchini and cauliflower and tomatoes were also grilled to perfection. Delicious.. which I had my own skewer though…

The snails were SOOOOO tender and delicious.  It was great with a nice squirt of lemon and was great with the crostini but I enjoyed it better without – I like tasting things for their very own flavor. A GREAT run with snails lately…. First Plein Sud, then Marea and now here. YUM.  New trend :]

Carpaccio
Thinly Sliced Beef, Arugula, Lemon, Parmigiano

This was actually very similar to a Bresaola.. a cured/salted and dried beef.  I was kind of disappointed since I was expecting melt in your mouth paper thin beef.. these came in hugeeeee salty pieces that were pretty thick for a carpaccio, covered in a delicious olive oil [White is good with his oil] and the flavors packed a mean punch.  A little bit too much oil for me but was much better balanced with the parm and the bitter arugula. Mwahahah I still ended up eating like half the dish anyways :] NOM!

Ventresca
Olive Oil Poached Tuna Belly, Fava Beans, Fagioli

This was SUCH a good pick!  Definitely my favorite non-pasta dish of the night.  The tuna belly, while I usually don’t like fully cooked tuna was poached SO beautifully.. instead of the fat becoming overpowering, it just turned into butter and made the flesh soooo tender and succulent – super juicy.  The nice balance of some pickled red onion and perfectly cooked fava and fagiolis really added a nice freshness to the dish.  Felt like spring.  YES, spring is here.

Rigatoni
Ground Seppia, Shrimp, Fava Beans, Stracchino Cheese

The rigatoni was cooked to perfection, per usual, the fava beans [yessss!!!! I LOOOOVE spring!!!]  The creamy cheesiness of the stracchino and the flavorful seppia really added SO much to the dish. LOVE LOVE LOVE.  Not to mention how the green favas added a beautiful punch of green to the dish.

Gnocchi
Ricotta Dumplings, Pomodoro, Speck & Basil

Now, it’s been awhile since I’ve had amazing gnocchithe best probably being Le Cirque or Mizuna….I mean the last time I had gnocchi was horrible.  Horrible gnocchi which ended in a horrible night. [Long story] Horrible gnocchi sucks… heavy, dense… NOT fluffy… but these WERE not.  Super light tomato sauce, which I ADORED…a hint of speck and basil…. but omg the gnocchi… SO fluffy and pillowy.. they tasted more like pasta dough pillows and not the fluffy potato-y kinds but it was a good kind of chew and yum!

Garganelli
Pasta Quills, Cream, Truffle Butter, Prosciutto

Like long skinny pennes.. model pennes?  While regular pennes are regular people? I duno, bad analogy.  Creamy, simple, the prosciutto was SO delicious and while there wasn’t a lot, it added SO much flavor to the dish.  Very light truffle but definitely did a lot for the pasta.  Once again PERFECTLY cooked pasta.

Before we get to the final pasta dish of the night, AND my favorite — I just have to say while I loved Marea, I was disappointed in their pastas being slightly undercooked…  especially when I had White’s other restaurant the next day.  I know that Marea is “prized” above Osteria Morini to some foodies but for me, DELICIOUS.

Ok, sorry for the break, continue.

Stracci
Pasta Rags, Braised Wild Mushrooms, Rosemary Oil

My favorite of the night.. here it is in all it’s glory.  Thick juicy flavorful mushrooms admist the large “rags” of thin delicate pasta. SO FREAKING GOOD.. and addicting.  It was like eating delicious thin thin egg wonton wraps – WHICH I’m SO thinking of doing tomorrow night :] Hahaha…  We ended up adding more cheese and some hot pepper flakes to all the pastas.. well, I added the hot pepper flakes, everything else just had TONS of cheese :D

We were super happy and had warm bellies.. but since we were still on our second bottle of wine and I needed some chocolate and sweetness to push down all the savory we ordered one dessert to share amongst the three of us.

Gianduja Budino
Chocolate-Hazelnut Custard, Gelato Alla Caffe

SO FREAKING DELICIOUS.  The thin crunchy, flakey puff  topping on top was TO DIEEEEE FOR.  Delicious gelato and the MOOOOOST CREAMMMMMY hazelnutty and chocolatey,BUTTTTTERY custard. OH EM GEE.  It also came with whole roasted hazelnuts in a delicious light sauce drizzled around it.  Sort of burnt caramely if i remember correctly.  BUT, anyways. continue. SOOOO GOOOD.. I don’t even ever usually order hazelut/choc desserts since they all taste like nutella!  I LOVE nutella.. but since I buy it and religiously eat them out of the jar like crazy it’s not too big of a deal usually when desserts taste just like them. THIS is NOT the case. GET THIS.  DEVOUR IT. SAVOUR IT. LOVE IT. LIVE IT. Ok. Done.

Delicious.  After a great meal we walked over to Madame Geneva.. but since it was Memorial Day and it was closed, we ended up heading over to the rooftop, Plunge bar/lounge, at the Gansevoort Hotel.

“Spring” Pesto Gnocchi in the Summatime

Gnocchi… oh so fluffy and delicious when done right [even mind-blowingly amazing] but it’s usually done totally wrong.

The word gnocchi means “lumps”, and may derive from nocchio, a knot in the wood,[1] or from nocca (knuckle).[2] It has been a traditional Italian pasta type of probably Middle Eastern origin since Roman times.[3] It was introduced by the Roman Legions during the enormous expansion of the empire into the countries of the European continent. In the past 2,000 years, each country developed its own specific type of small dumplings, with the ancient gnocchi as their common ancestor. In Roman times, gnocchi were made from a semolina porridge-like dough mixed with eggs, and are still found in similar forms today, particularly Sardinia‘s malloreddus (although they do not contain eggs).

The use of potato is a relatively recent innovation, occurring after the introduction of the potato to Europe in the 16th century.[4]

Source: Wikipedia

I’ve been staying in a lot lately and cooking dinner. In fact other than going out to Boston for the weekend it’s almost two weeks since I’ve dined out :] Last night I made a little something something more jazzed up. I think of it as a “Spring” inspired dish but you could have it any time of the year… Why not make it GNOCCHI NIGHT!!!!! :D I was between a creamy sauce and a regular tomato-based sauce… but since we did that the night before [read on to hear a brief recap of that] I decided that it’d be creamy sauce time…

There’s no set recipe for this since I tend to just cook by taste and how I feel…

The pesto is just a big handful of basil leaves, about a cup of toasted pinenuts, 7-8 cloves of garlic and evoo drizzled in.

I pre-steam some sweet peas and ribbons of carrots for a few minutes.

I cook the gnocchi is salted boiling water until it floats…. I cheated and used freshly made gnocchi that I bought from Russo’s over the weekend back home in Massachusetts… I LOVE their freshly made pasta.. the night before this we had some of their raviolis for dinner :] — sweet pea/riccota, spinach/cheese and butternut squash. YUM.

Continuing on….

While I wait on that I take some pesto in a pan, add some cream and a LOT of freshly greated parm reg and mix it all together. When the gnocchi is done I scoop it into the pan, add in the veggies and toss it together.

Even tho I’ve been going pretty vegetarian for awhile, decided that a little protein is good… so I grilled up a garlicky chicken breast on the side, sliced it up and topped off the bowl of gnocchi with the succulent chicken.

Simple. Quick. Easy. Delicious.

Refreshing, the veggies add a lightness to the creamy pesto just covering the pillowy potato goodnesses :D Yay.

And we have extra pesto to make other yummies/pastas with :]