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Portland, Oregon food blog with many years worth of recipes, restaurant features, and food photos.


Awesome Onion Goggles

Pretty Good Black Bean Soup


I made this the other night based on what I had in the fridge, freezer and assorted cabinets. Two cans of black beans? Check. Actually, I have five cans of black beans in the cabinet. Every time I go to the store, I can’t remember if I have black beans, so I buy another can. *sigh*

Anyway, to continue, a bag in the freezer of about 1 cup fire-roasted, diced tomatoes? Check. Jalapeno that I really need to use…? Well, you get the idea. For a things-I-need-to-use-in-the-kitchen project, it turned out really tasty!

Pretty Good Black Bean Soup
1 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp olive oil
3 slices Canadian bacon, diced (you can skip this, or substitute sausage, bacon, some other kind of pork product, etc…)
1 small white onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp dried oregano
1 cup fire-roasted, diced tomatoes (with juice)
1 jalapeno, roasted, peeled & diced
5 cups chicken or vegetable stock
juice of 1/2 an orange
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
salt & pepper to taste


Toast the cumin seeds in a small pan over medium heat. Just for a minute or two. Then, grind them in a spice or coffee grinder (a dedicated spice coffee grinder or a coffee grinder that . . . → Read More: Pretty Good Black Bean Soup

Awesome Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

pie title
Still pretty warm from the oven!

Okay, so this pie has been out of the oven for about 18 hours now and it is 3/4 gone. Did I mention that we were asleep for like 8 of those hours? Right, so this is a really good pie!

The crust recipe is Dorie Greenspan’s Good for Almost Everything Pie Dough which is quite simply, the best pie dough I have ever made. Start with the pie dough. You can even make it a day ahead. I did this, rolling my bottom crust out the and letting it sit in the pie pan overnight in the refrigerator. The top crust just hung out in disc-form and then I rolled that one out before baking.

I kind of based the filling recipe on a number of recipes I found online and in cookbooks. It was a little from Column A + a little from Column B sort of thing. But first, onto the crust!

Dorrie Greenspan’s Good for Almost Everything Pie Dough
For a 9 inch Double Crust
3 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 1/2 sticks very cold unsalted butter, cut into tbsp size pieces
1/3 cup very cold vegetable shortening, cut into . . . → Read More: Awesome Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

Tabla Mediterranean Bistro


jwa and I went out for a nice Thursday night meal and FINALLY tried Tabla Mediterranean Bistro. So good! Excellent deal with the three courses for $24. We did the wine pairings for an extra $16.

I’m kind of sleepy so this post will be mostly pictures.


Just for fun, we both started the meal with a cocktail — the isadora duncan, housemade lemon-verbena vodka, cassis, tonic, rocks. Mmm!


Okay, three courses (plus desert), let’s go! For the first course, we both had the baby lettuce salad with deviled egg dressing, spiced pepitas, grilled garlic whips, shaved grana padano. It was paired with a 2006 domaine lafond, grenache blanc/rousanne/viognier, from Lirac, France. We both loved the pumpkin seeds (pepitas) here. Note to self: toast pumpkin seeds more often!


For the pasta course, jwa had the squid ink fettuccini with monteray monterey bay calamari, roasted fennel, lemon, pine nut bread crumbs, paired with a 2006 quinta dos roques, from Portugal. It was a little spicy and quite good.


For my pasta course, I had the snap pea agnolotti with lemon, english peas, shaved proscuitto, parmesan reggiano with a 2008 françois . . . → Read More: Tabla Mediterranean Bistro

Chicken Braised in Beer (Coq à la Bière)


This makes a very good weekend meal. There are a lot of steps and ingredients but it is so worth it in the end (like a lot of long-cooking, multi-stepped recipes). It’s very similar to coq au vin, but with beer (duh). Use a good dark beer, Belgian-style if you’ve got it. I used half belgian, half regular dark. Four cups is about 2.5 bottles of beer, so you’ll have half a beer to drink while you start cooking. So, bonus points there.

Let’s see, what else? We had this with crusty bread but you could also add polenta or noodles to serve it over. I added garlic to this and subbed pancetta for the bacon but that’s about it. Oh yeah, I didn’t have leek leaves. Skipped that and added some rosemary sprigs to my bouquet garni instead.

This recipe is from the awesome cookbook, “French Farmhouse Cookbook,” and is the same cookbook with the walnut chicken recipe. That is pretty much my most favorite chicken recipe ever.

From the Aix-lea-Orchies villiage in France, right near the Belgian border. Hence the beer. Speaking of, a good dark beer works for well for drinking with this meal. We cracked open . . . → Read More: Chicken Braised in Beer (Coq à la Bière)

Rhubarb Crisp with Sage, Rosemary & Thyme Ice Milk

rhubarb crisp

Oh my this was good. I messed around with the recipe a bit, mainly I made a 1/2 recipe of the rhubarb and a full recipe of the topping! Mahahahahaha — (that was an evil laugh).

I only had two rhubarb pieces which weighed 12 oz. That was my main reason for making a half recipe. But when I got it all mixed up, I found that I could just fill up 4 ramekins. So, I figured I would need almost all the crumbly topping of the original recipe. Right? Yes, exactly.

Recipe below is the full recipe, halve, double or quadruple as needed.

Rhubarb Crisp w/ Crunchy, Crumbly Walnut Topping
Adapted from Bon Appétit magazine
24 ounces fresh rhubarb, trimmed, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 5 cups) — this is about 4 pieces
2/3 cup sugar
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/2 tsp grated orange peel
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Crumbly, Crumbly Topping
2/3 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
1/3 cup chopped toasted walnuts
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Mix all rhubarb ingredients in large bowl to combine. Divide mixture among four to six 1-cup . . . → Read More: Rhubarb Crisp with Sage, Rosemary & Thyme Ice Milk