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eG Foodblog: Mooshmouse - Back-to-school Dining on the Left Coast


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I used to live in Saskatchewan too - they have tunnels at the airport now??? Wusses!

It's so worth it to raise kids with good food. And I showed in my blog, my stepson came to me eating only Spaghetti Os from a can, and now is an expert pasta-maker in his own right. I think we can expect great things from Noah.

We've been to Vancouver several times, but now I'm really looking forward to our next visit, now that I know you guys, and now that Moosh has shown so many delicious places to visit that I'd never heard of before.

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Lovely blog! such a wonderful balance between social events, showing us beautiful Vancouver, home cooking, dining out, exotic foods, food shopping, and domestic bliss. Thanks for sharing all those aspects of your life with us this week.

And yes, I want to come to Vancouver now as well!

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What a day! I've been with you in spirit, if not in blog. Renovation-related errands in the morning and an afternoon spent sequestered in the basement, sorting and packing. :blink: Thanks to you all for being so patient with me in spite of the fact that I've been at least half a step behind with my blog most of the time. It's so annoying when real life interferes with eGullet. :rolleyes::raz:

Chicken Adobo is on the stove! While I'm waiting for the chicken to render, I'll post the last couple of photos from Friday's dinner.

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Mu Shu Pork Wrap before...

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And after.

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Sleeman's Honey Brown Lager. Cooking is thirsty work, you know. :wink:

Noah just came running downstairs, yelling at the top of his lungs, "Something smells terrific! I can smell dinner cooking! Is it ready yet? I'm huuuunnnnnngggggggrrrryyyy!! Where's my dinner?!" So I'm off to check on the adobo. Can't keep him waiting!

Edited by Mooshmouse (log)

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Partway through our meal, Canucklehead mentioned that he was driving up to Michele Cake Shop in Kerrisdale right after lunch.  He'd heard that Michele's mango cakes were on sale for 20% off and figured this was the perfect opportunity to try one.  I jumped at his invitation to come along, not for the mango cake but for the chance to sample their pasteis de nata or Portuguese egg tarts which I'd been told are out of this world.

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And now for some gratuitous bakeshop photos.  Oooh, baybee, I love me my baked goods.

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Target acquisition complete for Canucklehead.  Mango cake is, indeed, delicious... I picked one up a couple of weeks ago for my Mom's birthday.

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And mission accomplished for me too.

Lo and behold, Michele's phenomenal Pasteis de Nata.  Divine.  One of the best egg tarts I've ever had.  Light, flaky, buttery pastry... I resisted the urge to massage my carotid arteries every time I took a bite.

After Canucklehead dropped me back off downtown, I took the scenic route home and snapped a few photos of the seawall and English Bay.  Though it was overcast when I woke up on Friday, the skies had cleared nicely by late morning and it turned into another flip-flops day.

A closeup of the Inukshuk, Vancouver's symbol for the 2010 Olympics.

Man, I miss Vancouver. I'd move there in a hot second. I spent 1 month at UBC my last summer of law school( 2002). We did a summer( aka vacation) abroad program. We had class till 2pm and the rest of the day free. I loved English bay, my favorite was Kits pool( that was a really hot summer, it rarely rained).

I think its time we make a trip back and check out all those great places you're mentioning.

Great blog.

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When I lived in Saskatchewan years ago, I knew a family of English ex-pats.  They'd arrived from the southern end of England, where the climate is similar to Vancouver, on a January day in the late 1960's.  Back then, there were no nice tunnels into the terminal; they rolled the steps up to the door and you got down and walked across the tarmac.

They arrived in a terrible blizzard, in white-out conditions, and the pilot was lucky to find a small hole in the storm so he could set down.  When the doors opened, the father was the first out, setting an example for the rest of his rather intimidated family.  The kids, of course, swallowed their terror and followed.  When the mom got to the doorway, though, she stopped dead, grabbed the doorframe, and announced to the entire area that she was NOT getting off, NOBODY could make her, and they could just turn the airplane around RIGHT NOW and take her home.

They told this as an amusing anecdote, when I knew them in the early '80s, but the mom had only the thinnest of smiles...

My best friend and her husband came to visit me and my then-boyfriend one January in Duluth. They had been living in Malawi, but were touring the USA to catch up with friends and family. When they arrived and I went to answer the door, they were standing there with eyes as big as saucers. "Nancy," they exclaimed, "we love you dearly, but we are never visiting you in the winter again because it's TOO **#@!%* COLD!" True to their word, they've only come in July since. :laugh:

Back to the blog: Moosh, I know all about the time-lag of the blog (believe me, it looks worse from inside) but I still want to know about your screen name.

...and again, what a terrific cutie Noah is, and how wonderful that he's an enthusiastic eater! :biggrin:

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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If you've explained your screen name anywhere, I've missed it.  Why Moosh?  Why mouse?

Mooshmouse. It's a nickname that Ian chose for me while we were dating, an offshoot of the cartoon character Mushmouse from the 1960s. He picked it for two reasons: (1) for the cuteness factor, and (2) because I'm a mushy (mooshy), ridiculously affectionate person at heart. :rolleyes: Ian still calls me Moosh every now and again, and I ended up adopting it as an online screen name about 6 years ago.

Hope that's not too anticlimactic, but that's my story and I'm sticking to it! :wink:

Edited by Mooshmouse (log)

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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I was quaffing Sleeman's Honey Brown Lager while cooking on Friday evening, but *Deborah* brought over an interesting bottle of wine for us to drink with dinner. Knowing that it would be included in the blog, she couldn't resist picking this one up when she saw the label.

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Woop Woop! :laugh::laugh::laugh:

Once we got over our giggle fit, we discovered that it was a reasonably good bottle of wine, especially when considering the price point.

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After the kids were tucked in for the night, we three settled in for Movie Night while nibbling on two Portuguese egg tarts each. Actually, I should say "scarfing down" since the egg tarts didn't last for very long. Gotta get me some more of those...

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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:hmmm:

Psssssst... wanna see my kiwis?

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There's a monumentally large kiwi vine at the back of our house; this photo only shows one small section since it spans over 20'. It grows at an exponential rate, reminiscent of Audrey II in Little Shop of Horrors, sending enormously long sections shooting out horizontally over the brick patio in search of something to grasp onto. We have to trim it frequently to keep it under control, but the effort is certainly worth it as the vine produces fruit rather prolifically.

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Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Ian placated himself with press-pot coffee on Saturday morning.

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I, on the other hand, grabbed a cappuccino to go at Prado en route to the Princess's castle.

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Once we arrived at our friends' home, my husband, the Sandwich Man, took it upon himself to make everyone lunch.

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You must understand, however, that Ian has distilled his sandwich-making process down to an exact formula. :huh:

  • Dijon mustard on the first slice of bread. No butter (damn it).
  • Meat atop the mustard since mustard enhances the taste of meat. Always start building with the meat side.
  • Cheese atop the meat. Savoury begets savoury. Apparently, Swiss cheese is the best for sandwiches.
  • Onions atop the cheese.
  • Tomato atop the onions. Now we're building the salad side.
  • Either pickles or cucumber atop the onions. One or the other as there's no room for both.
  • Lettuce or sprouts atop the pickles/cucumber.
  • Mayonnaise on the second piece of bread that's placed atop the lettuce/sprouts.

Thus spake the Sandwich Man. And heaven forbid that anyone contravene the Divine Order of Sandwich Making... otherwise, it just doesn't taste right. :rolleyes:

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Behold, the finished product: a black-forest ham sandwich. Not nearly as glorious as the ones he makes at home, but tasty nonetheless.

After an activity-filled afternoon, we needed a starch hit to tide us over until dinner.

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Homemade popcorn popped in a glass-lidded skillet. I sprinkled mine with seasoning salt.

Edited by SobaAddict70 (log)

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Psssssst... wanna see my kiwis?

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What beautiful kiwi's..... I am soooooo jealous :biggrin: as I love the little green nuggets of goodness..... :wub:

sarah

Always take a good look at what you're about to eat. It's not so important to know what it is, but it's critical to know what it was. --Unknown

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It had been a long Saturday. Ian, Noah and I were all a little tired, and cooking was the farthest thing from my mind. So we drove back to our neck of the woods to meet some friends and their daughter for Greek food at Bouzyos Taverna on Commercial Drive, about 5 minutes away from home.

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I collapsed into the nearest chair and requested an IV drip of sangria straightaway. Homous, tzatziki and a basket of warm pita bread soon followed, accompanied by a bowl of Greek salad.

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The portion sizes at Bouzyos are monumentally large, so we ordered an appetizer platter for two and a meat platter to split between four adults and two children.

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Spanakopita, Keftedes (Greek meatballs) hiding in the background, Dolmathes and Kalamari.

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Starting at the left, there's Lemon Roast Chicken, Ribs and Kleftiko (roast lamb) accompanied by rice and potatoes. It was just the right amount of food, and we all went home feeling comfortably full.

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However, Noah and his friend didn't want to leave without listening to the musicians perform: a duo playing Latin music. At a Greek restaurant. Go figure. :raz:

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Nine of us gathered for dinner at the Sea Harbour Seafood Restaurant in Richmond, a suburb just across the Fraser River from Vancouver.  It was a send-off of sorts for Atlantan eGulleter Steve Drucker and his wife Debbie as it was the last night of their one-week visit to Vancouver.

Oy! Debie and I ate like just released inmates last week.

Just getting back now to time zone equiibrium after our Sat afternoon return.

Preliminary to the monumental followup post, we had a great time Thu night meeting everyone.

In summary:

Kundos to Lee/Canucklehead for an extra fine job of organizing, selecting dishes and sizing up the order. His wisdom for a large table: one less dish than the number of people to be fed proved sage.

Best dish. Put me down too for the crab with kabocha squash and black bean. I am immensely and eternally grateful that no one got a picture of me Tom Jones style immersed in it up to my forearms.

Biggest surprise: the boned goose feet. I'm not a chicken feet fan, but these were fantastic, I think it was the combined flavor of the gelatinous rendered goose fat and sesame oil. Who needs french fries when you can have pure pieds?

Biggest non-surprise. For the second day in a row (previously at Shanghai Wind), perfectly cooked snow pea leaves, barely barely al dente upon arrival at the table. For some reason, here in Atlanta, they are always overcooked. After a minute or two at the table what remains is a plate of mostly liquid with gelatinous vegetable mass atop.

Sea Harbor is a very refined style of food, and different from what I normally think of as 'Hong Kong seafood'--e.g. squid or head on shrimp fried salt and pepper, steamed fish (flounder) ginger scallion, fried pompano. This was light, with clean flavors. Even the closing fried rice with dried scallops was light in its way, read non-greasy.

Coda: Drove down to Seattle Fri morning to meet friends for lunch and rest up (if you can call a 4:30 AM wake up call resting) for our Sat 7:30 AM flight home. We managed to get to:

--Salumi: meatballs nice but only adequate, sausage A, cured meats A+. Lamb proscuitto beyond words. They packed us a nice lunch for the flight home.

--Tamarind Tree, Vietnamese buried in the back of a strip center NW corner of Jackson and 12th strongly suggested by Mr. Nelso on CH board, a very good Vietnamese supper indeed. Comparing and contrasting, however, we probably enjoyed Pnomh Penh even more.

--Pike Place. East Vancouver Sat morning farmers market is better, albeit an unfair comparison.

Blow by blow of the week via the EG roadmap to follow.

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What johnnyd said, and I should have known, because I know they're related to gooseberries and I've even seen them growing in California.

I can't BELIEVE your blog is almost done! The time goes quickly, no? I'll probably be back before you sign off, but in case I don't, thanks so much for a great virtual visit to Vancouver, as well as a reminder of Mushmouse, whom I'd forgotten. I've really enjoyed this blog.

Any more ideas for tamarind? Right now I'm contemplating making a tamarind sauce to toss with stuffed pasta. The question is, with what should I stuff that pasta? Or should I mix the tamarind with the stuffing? Or is this just too weird an idea? :raz:

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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The photos that I'm about to post of English Bay were taken especially with you and Jensen in mind.  Absence makes the heart grow fonder.

And it worked. That's it...we're moving back!

Actually, we are moving back but not until 2007 when the Spawn graduates from high school.

Thank you for a wonderful blog. It's been like a trip home. :wub:

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I will add my thanks for a great blog! The pics of English Bay were lovely - exactly the route I used to run (right before scarfing eggs benny with my mates somewhere on Davie) :rolleyes: I was ok until the shot of the Sleemans :wacko: and the greek food....I broke down had a little cry :raz: The greatest thing to come out of this week was the inspiration to make 'leedle peeples food' look as good as 'grown folks grub' :biggrin: THANKS!

darn typos!

Edited by easternsun (log)

"Thy food shall be thy medicine" -Hippocrates

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I had no idea kiwis grew on vines.  That is a cool pic, thanks!

What johnnyd said, and I should have known, because I know they're related to gooseberries and I've even seen them growing in California.

Neither did I, actually, until a few years ago. Ian, Noah and I were visiting a farm on Vancouver Island with the rest of Ian's family for their annual Pumpkin Festival. Their Haunted Hay Ride took us past large expanses of beautiful vines; upon closer inspection, we saw, to our great surprise, that they yielded kiwi fruit. Who'da thunk it?

I can't BELIEVE your blog is almost done!  The time goes quickly, no?

Any more ideas for tamarind?  Right now I'm contemplating making a tamarind sauce to toss with stuffed pasta.  The question is, with what should I stuff that pasta?  Or should I mix the tamarind with the stuffing? Or is this just too weird an idea?  :raz:

I can't believe it either! This whole week has been a blur... but a huge blast too!

Hmmm. More ways to use sampaloc. A Google search for tamarind recipes yielded one that you might be able to modify for your stuffed pasta recipe: Salmon with Tamarind Sauce. The permutations are endless, really. Cook the salmon as directed and use it to stuff the pasta, stuff the pasta with a simply prepared salmon and drizzle it with the sauce... time to get creative Nancy! :wink:

I also managed to track down a recipe for Champoy which is a Filipino tamarind-based confection. These are still a favourite candy of mine and can usually be purchased at any Filipino store. And there's also this list of tamarind recipes on epicurean.com.

Hope I've been of some help! :smile:

And it worked. That's it...we're moving back!

Success! :laugh:

It'd be great to meet you when you finally do return to our fair city. :smile:

Edited by Mooshmouse (log)

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Naptime for Noah, blog time for Mom.

Knowing that we had a long Sunday ahead of us, Ian and I figured that first thing in the morning would be the only opportunity we had for anything resembling a break. So, the three of us trooped on down to Prado Cafe on The Drive where we met a friend and her daughter for coffee and a treat. I have two favourite coffee shops in town: The Elysian Room, located close to Ian's office and owned by Vancouver eGer hopkin, and Prado Cafe. Because it's in our neighbourhood, however, I end up at Prado 8 times out of 10 just for the sake of convenience.

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That's Amy York behind the bar; after a lengthy stint as manager for JJ Bean just down the street, she struck out on her own and opened Prado earlier this year. It has a clean, minimalist aesthetic and friendly, talented baristi who really give a damn about the shots that they pull.

The second photo, which I actually took on Friday, doesn't accurately reflect the number of people at Prado on Sunday morning. It was slammed, both inside and out. Ian's pretty good at the obnoxious hover, though, so we managed to shoehorn 3 adults and 2 kids into a corner table.

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Amy's got a real knack for baking; all of the baked goods sold at Prado are made in house. She loves to experiment with new recipes, and I often get to taste-test the treats that emerge from her oven.

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Ian had a decaf Americano (I mean really... decaf?!) and this Cranberry Sweet Ginger muffin. He used to drink 6-8 cups of drip coffee a day but had to reign in his caffeine consumption after he finally figured out that it was starting to affect his mood.

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I opted for a Cappuccino and what Amy and crew have dubbed a Flat White Cookie. It's a riff on a meringue, made with almonds, egg whites and coconut.

When Prado first opened, Kid O by Intelligentisia was their bean of choice. Within the past month, however, they've switched over to an Organic Fair Trade Espresso by 49th Parallel Roasters, a new venture of local eGulleter vin and the rest of the award-winning folks at Caffe Artigiano. If you're at all curious about the espresso's flavour profile, it's a custom blend of Timor, Peru, Guatemala and Venezuela (decaf is Peruvian).

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Naptime for Noah, blog time for Mom.

Knowing that we had a long Sunday ahead of us, Ian and I figured that first thing in the morning would be the only opportunity we had for anything resembling a break.  So, the three of us trooped on down to Prado Cafe...

Oh. My. Goodness.

I am a caffeine addict (it only affects me in positive ways, I swear). :wink: In any case, I think your pictures of that cappuccino have made me salivate harder than anything else on this blog. Joie, it looks gorgeous. Thank goodness for non-corporate coffee.

Edited by Megan Blocker (log)

"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan

eG Foodblogs: 2006 - 2007

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Hi, Mooshmouse--

Chiming in late to say: between the nostalgia-inducing photos of Pacific Northwest landscapes, the yummy food, and your adorable son, I have been totally enjoying this blog.

You should know that your blog finally gave me the kick in the butt to go hunt down a local Filipino restaurant. I just came home from this huge lunch of sinigang, paksiw na pata (at least I think that's what it was--the very helpful fellow behind the counter just called it "paksiw," and while the pork was chopped pretty fine I did find some nice chewy bits suggesting it came from the pig's footsies), and pinakbet (man, that bitter melon will make you sit up and say "howdy"!). Gotta go back sometime soon, and this time bring reinforcements to help me sample all the other stuff in the steam table.

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What are your markets like?

I've been eating sparingly throughout the day to keep my stomach primed for tonight's A Taste of British Columbia! dinner at Aurora Bistro. Ian will be home shortly to pick me up; however, I just wanted to sneak in a long overdue reply to one of Nancy's questions from way back when.

Vancouver and the Lower Mainland have fantastic Farmers' Markets; my only lament is that I haven't had the time to show you one this week as part of this blog. Nonetheless, there's plenty of info and a few photos too in the Vancouver forum's Farmers Markets thread if you're interested.

Clear the way... I'm off to eat! :wink:

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Thanks again for the great blog, Joie. And a special thank you for the intro to Filipino food, I know we'll be experimenting more in the near future - and next time I'll remember to ask for the names of the dishes!

Barbara Laidlaw aka "Jake"

Good friends help you move, real friends help you move bodies.

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Joie, you've got my husband drooling over the Mu Shu Pork Wrap so I'll have to give it a try soon. What kind of sauce is drizzled over it? And do you guess amounts for the pork or is there a recipe you could please post?

Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Orison Swett Marden

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Joie, you've got my husband drooling over the Mu Shu Pork Wrap so I'll have to give it a try soon. What kind of sauce is drizzled over it? And do you guess amounts for the pork or is there a recipe you could please post?

That's hoisin sauce drizzled over the Mu Shu Pork Wrap. It's a recipe that I've adapted from a barbecue book at the cabin; rather than having exact proportions of anything, it's turned into "a little of this and a little of that". However, roughly speaking, I use proportions based on 1 lb of ground pork and increase it from there.

  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1 egg
  • 1 T soy sauce
  • 2 T minced water chestnuts
  • 1-3 cloves of garlic, to taste
  • Worcestershire sauce, sriracha/sweet chili sauce and/or pepper, to taste
  • Bread crumbs if required (though I rarely need them)

Shape into logs -- 1 lb should make 6 logs -- and either barbecue or grill them in the oven. Easy!

Joie must be busy uploading the pictures for you all. Trust me, everyone's in for a treat! Dinner was amazing!  :wub:

That's what I should've been doing. Joie was busy falling asleep on the sofa instead. :rolleyes::laugh:

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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        Post offices, car rentals, supermarkets and even coffee shops (in some smaller towns police stations too) all close their doors for a riposo. Everything comes to a standstill as every Italian goes home to kick of their shoes, enjoy a homemade lunch with family and bask in the Italian sunshine for three to four hours. This is serious business. One would not dare work for 8 hours straight. After their riposo most businesses open again around 4 o'clock and stay open till 7pm. Its the perfect balance between work and play and does wonders for your digestive system!
        "Grazie!" I thanked her for the reminder. The midday sun started to become unbearable. The streets had cleared with only a few tourists braving the midday heat still around. I thought about the strawberries I bought from the market earlier that week. Strawberries for lunch on my shaded balcony and maybe a nap afterwards sounded like my perfect riposo. The pasta will have to wait till 4.
               
           
    • By KennethT
      OK.... here we go again!!!  While this post is a bit premature (we don't take off until around 1:30AM tonight), I am extremely excited so I figured I'd just set up the topic now.  As in previous foodblogs, I may post a bit from time to time while we're there, depending on how good my internet connection is, and how much free time I have... but the bulk of posting will really get started around July 9th - the day after we get home (hopefully without too much jetlag!!!)
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