Monday, January 22, 2007


I've been wanting to make foccacia bread for a long time so last night I went and bought ready made dough. I sort read the directions, which is why the foccacia turned out looking pretty bad. I didn't take a photo of it because all I want to do it to forget about it. Let me tell you, it was horrible. The shape was horrible. Certain areas of the bread were raw. Yup. Raw: as in not cooked. It didn't taste bad; it was kind of good so we ate it. Okay, let's see where it went wrong. Instead of following the direction on the bag I followed Jamie Oliver's direction for "homemade dough." I think that's the first thing that went wrong. I let it rise, but it didn't seem to rise so I took it out of the bowl and started beating it. Emmm, you're supposed to beat bread so that the air comes out of it. Okay, that part was fine. I started rolling it out, but it was a little hard so I added some flour....I think that's where it went wrong. I started kneading it....that's where it went horrible wrong. I could no longer get it to go flat; it kept wanting to ball up. So I had to pretend that it was a pizza...I tried tossing it...that only works with dough that hasn't gone wrong. So anyway, I started to just pull it apart...luckily I was able to pull it apart enough for it to have some sort of stickiness underneath...that's when I had it back on the baking pan. I was able to stretch it out about 12 inches across and 9 inches high. I tried rolling it so that it the dough would even out, but the rolling didn't work. So I ended up with a mountainous landscape type dough (did I mention that at this time I also added some dry basil, which only stayed at one part of the bread. haha). Well, I guess I was supposed to let it rise again, but I just threw some salt, parmesan cheese, and extra virgin olive oil on top and threw it in the oven. (I poked holes in the bread in several areas so that the olive oil could stay put and cook in the oven...well, I think that was the purpose).

Next time I'll take a photo even if it's bad looking. =)

p.s the BEST foccacia bread is served at The Karta Bar on Thayer St. I think that they USED to serve them for free, but I didn't see them last time.They're really good though.


Saturday, January 20, 2007

Roast Leg of Lamb

Leg of lamb was on sale so I decided to roast one this weekend.

My first attempt to make roasted leg of lamb turned out pretty well (at least I think so). I got the main recipe from a Donna Hay cookbook that was given to us last year. Donna Hay called for 5 pound leg of lamb, but I was only able to get a four pounder. And instead of using only seeded mustard, honey and a bed of rosemary I added slivers of garlic, rosemary (see photo), olive oil, salt and black pepper.

Even though I had a 4 pound leg of lamb I followed the 5 pound recipe. The lamb roasted for 1.5 hours. The lamb was cooked, which was good because I’m a little paranoid about eating raw lamb (I’m okay with raw beef, but not lamb).

I also made green beans, glazed carrots and stove top stuffing...and of course rice.

(Before the extra virgin olive oil rub)

To see the rest of the photos and more click on the link above


Sunday, January 07, 2007

Thee worst restaurant in Providence is Sakura Restaurant

No words can describe how horrible the food was. The beef teriyaki was the worst thing I've ever eaten in my life (and I've had sea urchin before). I didn't bother eating the sushi that M-- ordered because from the looks of it they didn’t even look like raw sushi grade fresh.

I didn’t even bother offering some of my beef to M--. After awhile I told him that I would offer it to him, but that I’m not going to because it was so bad. I apologized to him for suggesting that we go there. I know it wasn’t my fault, but I felt so bad. He said he was okay (that’s because he’s very tolerant).

Here are the reasons why the beef dish (oh my gosh! I still can't get over how horrible this place was!) was so bad:

1) The beef was flat....meaning it was extremely thin (thinly sliced).
2) The beef smelled. It smelled of rotten beef because it was probably rotten. Before I even ate the meat I could smell how bad it was (and I'm the type of person that eats anything). I ate a piece and was seriously thinking about not touching my plate after that. I should have done so since I feel sick to my stomach right now.
3) The rice was soggy.
4) The beef was over cooked. (The reason why they over cooked the meat was to cover up that fact that the meat was rotten. They do this in Chinese restaurants, but it’s harder to detect because they cut the meat into smaller pieces AND they add ginger and a lot of garlic to over the smell).
5) The ramen noodles that came with the plate was nasty and was unnecessary
6) The beef tasted BAD. Need I say more?

The only mediocre thing about the food was that the miso soup wasn't bad and the price for the food wasn't as expensive as Haruki. (I'd rather pay more for some-what good Japanese food than pay less to eat TRASH. Yes, they serve trash and I resent everyone that holds this place so high. Besides the food being very nasty, inedible and sicken the entire restaurant looked like trash. Seriously, even a person without an eye for detail can see the enormous flaws they have at that restaurant. The ceilings were old and dirty. The walls were cracked and dusty. And the bathroom --- well, it's comparable to the boys’ bathroom in the public schools. Okay, it wasn't as bad, but it was very bad. Did I mention that the blinds in the bathroom weren't closed all the way because they were broken and dirty (I saw this before I got the food) and that the soap looked dirty and crusty?)

This place serves trash.

I am so sick of the Asian restaurants here in Providence (except for Sawadee on Hope St.). The Asian restaurants here in Providence give non-Asians a false sense of what Asian food is like and that is not good. If you want real Asian food go to California (go to LA, Oakland, San Francisco, and any city in the Bay Area). My gosh, it's horrible how a lot of people think that this place is so great when it's not. Yes, they don't charge that much, but do you really want to eat trash? I hate to dog this place, but they get an “F-“ from me.

I read the reviews on yahoo and everyone seemed to like it EXCEPT one smart individual who said this place is overrated and YES it is!

Do not eat here unless you really don’t care about eating good food.

I would have been HAPPY to have had a frozen entree than to have eaten here.


Friday, January 05, 2007

Hay Market in Boston, MA

Once in awhile I like to go out of the state to get some fresh and CHEAP produce. We went last week and were able to get asparagus for only $1. Yes, one dollar. Pretty good deal. I got some herbs (cilantro (aka coriander), 3 bunches green onions, and parsley) for $2.25. At the market around the corner from my house, for $2.25 I would only be able to get one or two bunch of herbs. I wanted basil, but the guy forgot to bring them with him because he was going to a wedding the next day and had forgotten. Yes, he told me all of this and then he introduced himself and told me to come back next week. I said okay, but I don't think I'll be back for another month or two.

Penne with Newman's vodka sauce, served with baked Shaw's hot Italian sausage topped with parsely.

Cheap and easy. Less than $7 per person (or more like $3.50 per serving since we eat for two). Oh yeah I forgot about the asparagus. Add another 75 cents to the cost since I only used 3/4 of what I bought....(of course I forgot about the rest. I didn't have enough room when I roasted them).

Sorry there's not link to the Hay Market...but it's near the Holocaust Memorial in Boston. You can't miss it.


"cake like" mini brownies

During the holidays I tried to bake. I was planning on baking a lot of things but after the first attempt I gave up.

I baked brownies for the second time ever.

The brownies weren't so great. One of the reasons why it turned out so bad was because I thought that "cake like" meant that the brownies would be fluffy. Boy was I wrong. I also over cooked them. They weren't burnt, but I definitely over cooked them.

They were very cute, but they tasted bad so I had to throw them away. M-- eats everything I bake, but not that time. When I was tossing the brownies into the garbage a mini brownie fell. When it hit the ground it made a thumping noise. I picked it up and knocked it on the wall. Wow, it sounded like someone's knuckles hitting the wall.