Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Sara's Mushroom Tart

Just thought I'd post a few pictures of the mushroom tarts my lovely and talented fiancee' made for me the other night.

Perfectly roasted mushrooms, smoky, creamy gouda cheese on buttery, flaky puff pastry. I drizzled a bit of white truffle oil on mine for some extra shroomy goodness.

We had a simple, green salad with some home made lemonade aioli, and some francis coppola chardonnay.

It was delicious. Be jealous.



I'd share the tart recipe with you, but Sara would come to your house in the night and suffocate you. So here's the Aioli...

1 Egg Yolk
1 Lemon, zested and juiced
6 ounces of grape seed oil
1 tablespoon of water
1 tablespoons of sugar
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon of olive oilo

1. In a bowl whisk together the egg yolk and lemon juice until pale yellow, and frothy. Whisk like you mean it.

2. SLOWLY and while whisking (still vigorously, you should totally be sweating) drizzle in the grapeseed oil. slowly equals less than 1 teaspoon at a time until you've achieved a proper emulsion. That's a big word, but you'll know your not screwing up when the mixture thickens with the addition of oil. If you have a thin, oil slick mess, you should start over. HINT: buy a lot of lemons... newb.

3. If you've reached this step, you're probably a better cook than everybody you know. If the aioli is too thick, you can a touch of water to thin it out. Otherwise, add the lemon zest, sugar, and season with salt and pepper. You're looking for a nice, slightly sweet, lemony dressing that's reminiscent of lemonade. You can finish the dressing with a dash of extra virgin olive oil for another layer of flavor. It goes great with some bitter, peppery arugula. ENJOY!


Monday, December 6, 2010


So... I ate one of these for the first time, and of my own volition.

Honestly, I had zero expectations. I was in a pinch. I knew it would be awful. I was not surprised.

For years I've heard from friends of the majesty of the McRib....

Friend (namely, my buddy Jimmy) : "Hey Juan, did you hear? THE MCRIB IS BACK!!"

Myself (disgusted): "Why do you know this?"

Let's be honest with ourselves, the McRib is made from the same ground pork they feed prisoners. pressed into the shape of comical, operation style ribs, slathered in the same shitty BBQ sauce that comes with your nuggets, and finally, for some class, sprinkled with the Mickey D's trademark onions and pickles...

An aside... I absolutely love pickle. However, when I was a child, I was convinced that I hated them. This notion was entirely based on the McDonald's "pickle". I'm not sure what type of liquid those pickles are... pickled in, but I'm fairly certain it contains the drug test urine from each potential McDonald's employee for the year. If you think you hate pickles too, TRY OTHER PICKLES. Anyway...

How is this something people look forward to? Why does everybody know when "the McRib is coming to town"? I understand that much of the allure of fast food comes in it's affordability, (how's that for a made up word, mama grizzlies?) and based on that fact, I can only hope the success of the McRib is due to the fact that the working man can't afford barbecue sauce. That has to be the secret, the barbecue sauce. If you ever find yourself having to smuggle a few kilos of smack into the country, just eat a McRib before you get on the plane. The drug dogs will be so preoccupied with the bog-of-eternal-stench BBQ sauce stain on your trousers, they'll never find the bag of dope strapped to your taint. If barbecue sauce is in fact the issue, please working man, go to the grocery store and buy a tub (yes, a tub) of Lloyds, of hell, even Manwich. For my loyal readers, I am in fact endorsing Manwich.

If I have any readers who are actual fans of the McRib and live in the Orlando area, I implore you to please try any of the following for a barbecue revelation.

1. For the best BBQ in Orlando: On a Friday or Saturday, take the 417 to Aloma and head towards Oviedo. There is a run down church, on the right, once you enter "Slavia" that turns into an outdoor BBQ extravaganza. Seriously, best BBQ I've ever had.

2. A literal tie for first place:

3. Great, beastly ribs

4. The Bubbalou's on Lee Road only, all other's suck ass.