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Archives for December 2010

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Review: The Friendly Toast, Portsmouth, NH

by TT December 31st, 2010| Restaurant Reviews
Over Thanksgiving weekend, my husband and I took a quick overnight trip to Portsmouth.  We love visiting this ocean community as there are many adorable shops and a wide array of restaurants.  We have spent several delightful evenings here, enjoying the amazing queso at Agave.

On our last stay in Portsmouth, we enjoyed a hearty breakfast at Roundabout Diner before heading home.  This time we decided to try something new to us and chose The Friendly Toast.  Located a short half-mile walk from our hotel, we were there in no time.  Although it was 9:30 on a Sunday
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Fresh Ricotta Soufflé

by TT December 30th, 2010| Main Dishes, Recipes, Side Dishes
Cheese is a favorite food in our house.  Whether served simply with crackers, added to a recipe, or heated into a wonderfully gooey concoction, we like to keep an assortment on hand at all times.  In fact, when we have three or fewer varieties in our dairy drawer, someone usually announces that it's time to buy more.  Yes, we live with a houseful of mice.

Over the past few years, our entire household's cheese palate has expanded.  The kids all have favorites, from smoked to gouda to fresh mozzarella to wedges of parmesan.  While that does make for slightly more expensive
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Honey Glazed Nuts

by TT December 27th, 2010| Simple Solutions
As always, the Christmas season arrives, and the pace inside our household quickens.  With four children excited for presents and school vacation, there is a constant air of excitement.  Add a set of parents staying for a few days and friends and family visiting for the holiday, and you have a full house.  While both my husband and I enjoy cooking, we also enjoy spending time with our family and friends.

To allow us maximum time visiting without resorting to boxed and store-bought food, we did a lot of cooking in the week before Christmas.  I spent an afternoon and evening
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Caramelized Squash Bites

by TT December 22nd, 2010| Appetizers, Recipes, Side Dishes
I think I have become obsessed with caramelizing foods.  As I started to write this post, I did a quick search of caramelized items in previous recipes.  I found recipes for the following caramelized items: onions, apples, puréed squash, and bananas.  While it may be a bit of an obsession, what is there not to like about foods with a sweet finish?

On a recent weekend, my husband and I spent our Sunday afternoon watching Christmas movies and cooking.  So, instead of planning a big Sunday dinner, we opted for an afternoon of appetizers.  One of the
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Grilled Cheese & Co, Catonsville, MD

by TT December 20th, 2010| Regional Best, Restaurant News
Earlier this month, Think Tasty readers had the opportunity to choose the best restaurant in the Mid-Atlantic Region.  With ten unique and wonderful restaurants on our list, picking the best was not easy.  The votes arrived steadily, with readers adding their votes and leaving comments raving about their restaurants until the end.  When voting was done, the restaurant that earned the most votes was Grilled Cheese & Co.

I was able to speak with Vic Corbi, one of the four co-owners of the restaurant.

TT: When did Grilled Cheese & Co open?

VC: We opened on April 5th of this
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Farm Stand Pizza

by TT December 17th, 2010| Main Dishes, Recipes
Back in my college days, one of my friends introduced me to her own pizza recipe.  It included leeks, red pepper, feta cheese, and dried basil.  I found it to be quite delicious and made it a few times throughout the years.  However, it's been quite a while since I've made this pizza.

A few weeks ago, my husband and I were doing our weekend errands, which included a trip to the farm stand.  We had decided we would plan that evening's menu based on what was available.  Traveling the aisles, we found fresh leeks.  For whatever reason, my friend's pizza
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Review: A Tale of Two Breakfasts

by TT December 15th, 2010| Restaurant Reviews
As parents of tweens and teens, my husband and I often have weekend mornings to ourselves.  Between sports practices, sleepovers, or just wanting to sleep late, it often is just the two of us for a good portion of the morning.  Being early risers, that gives us a good chunk of time for just us.  On mornings such as this, we tend to do a little work early in the morning and then head out for breakfast and errands.  As we have come to love Lull Farm in Hollis, we usually make that part of our weekend morning trip,
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The Best Restaurant in the Mid-Atlantic Region

by TT December 13th, 2010| Regional Best, Restaurant News
After ten days of voting, the poll for the best restaurant in the Mid-Atlantic Region closed this afternoon.  With ten fabulous restaurants on the list, it was difficult to decide.  However, many diners and Think Tasty readers placed their votes, and a winner has been chosen. . .

Grilled Cheese & Co


Please return to Think Tasty in the coming weeks to learn more about this restaurant and why it is the best restaurant in the Mid-Atlantic Region.

To view how the nine other restaurants fared, click
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Microplane Gourmet Coarse Grater

by TT December 10th, 2010| Equipment Reviews
Several years ago, I purchased my first Microplane Grater.  I thoroughly enjoyed using the Professional Coarse Grater.  With a sizable grating plane, it worked efficiently.  I used this kitchen tool at least daily, if not multiple times each day.  From grating cheese into a breakfast wrap to topping a lunch salad, this grater was the most used tool in our kitchen.

Besides being useful in grating our blocks of cheese, this tool had other benefits.  The grater was lightweight, making it easy to use for all of our household.  With only a single plane, it is quick to wash, as opposed
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Apple Soup

by TT December 9th, 2010| Healthy Cooking, Recipes, Soups & Stews
With the cool fall weather turning into cold winter weather, we have spent many weekend days purchasing groceries, canning, and cooking.  Early in the fall, we bought a half-bushel of apples and made apple butter and dried apple slices.  Between the two recipes, we used the whole bag.  It went so well that we decided to buy a second half-bushel and make some more apple items.

In hindsight, purchasing a second half-bushel may have been too much.  We didn't need to make more apple butter, as we already had many jars in our pantry.  We made a couple batches of dried
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Moe’s Original Bar B Que

by TT December 6th, 2010| Regional Best, Restaurant News
Last month, Think Tasty readers had the opportunity to choose the best restaurant in the Southeast region.  With ten fabulous  restaurants on our list, picking the best was a difficult decision.  Voting was constant, with readers adding their votes and leaving comments raving about their restaurants until the end.  When voting was done, the restaurant that earned the most votes was Moe's Original Bar B Que.

I was able to speak with Mike Fernandez, one of the founders and co-owners.

TT: Where was Moe's founded?

MF: Moe's Original Bar B Que
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Best Restaurant- Mid-Atlantic Region

by TT December 3rd, 2010| Regional Best, Restaurant News
Traveling north from the Southeast region, Think Tasty now moves to the Mid-Atlantic region.  Covering Virginia, West Virginia, Washington DC, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, we are sharing our top ten picks from the many that were submitted.  For the next ten days, readers will have the opportunity to choose their favorite restaurant.  Voting will end at 4:00 pm EST on Monday, December 13th, and the winner will be announced at that time.

1. B&O American Brasserie, Baltimore, MD
B&O
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