3377 SE Division Street
Portland, OR 97202
So, Ava Gene’s has been open about a year, which means it’s right on schedule for us to have tried it for the first time. Hint: my husband and I are not really timely. The restaurant has even gotten national mentions, like when Bon Appétit magazine named it the “#5 Best New Restaurant in America 2013.” And honestly, when we went, I was all ready to think it was over-hyped, but…damn!
I’m not going to go so far as to say that it’s I think it’s the best restaurant in Portland (because, I’m not really sure what restaurant I think is that), but I will say that we had an amazing meal and that I really enjoyed everything that we tried. It was also very easy to share plates — in fact, it seemed like most tables around us were employing that strategy as well.
The menu is organized into sections: Salumi & Formaggi (cured meat and cheese), Fritti (fried items), Pane (bread – think bruschetta-type plates), Giardini (Salads/vegetables), Primi (the pasta course), and Secondi (the meat course). There are also sides and desserts, . . . → Read More: A Lot of Meat, Cheese, Vegetables, and Pasta at Ava Gene’s — Oh, and the Bean Topped Bread
I have a new favorite baking product – and it is Spelt Flour. I’m not quite sure what it is about it, but everything I’ve baked with it just has a velvety, rich, full flavor that I am in love with. When using, I’ll typically replace one half of the white flour in a recipe with the spelt flour. I have been experimenting with it for awhile now in pie/tart crusts, scones, cookies and now…biscuits!
For this recipe, instead of using half spelt flour and half regular flour, I used light spelt flour mixed with just a little unbleached, white flour. Light spelt flour has most of the bran and germ removed, so the end result won’t be as heavy as using regular spelt flour. I wanted these biscuits to be on the fluffier side, so I decided to go this route.
The result was a flakey, flavorful biscuit! It may seem like there’s a lot going on here (there is — sage, orange zest, black pepper) but it works.
Make a batch now to freeze for Thanksgiving or just use them for weekday breakfasts with orange marmalade or . . . → Read More: Spelt Biscuits with Sage, Orange Zest, and Black Pepper
This week’s French Fridays with Dorie was a fairly straightforward soup – Chestnut and Pear. In fact, the hardest part was finding the jar of chestnuts (New Seasons, but I also saw them at Cost Plus). Like I do for a lot of the FFwD recipes, I cut this one in half and we still ended up with about three generous bowls of soup.
Honestly, I was a little unsure about this one. In a jar, chestnuts just look really, really unappetizing (at least to me). But, once you add the onions, rosemary, broth, and garlic (if there wasn’t garlic in the original recipe, I’m sure I added some), it was really good! Mostly savory, with just a little sweetness from the pear.
My photos are below and everyone’s posts are here. And like always, French Fridays recipes are in the cookbook, Around my French Table by Dorie Greenspan.
. . . → Read More: FFwD: Chestnut and Pear Soup
3111 SE Division Street
Portland Oregon 97202
Seeing that we live just a few blocks away, occasionally we will head out to Sunshine Tavern for pizza and burgers (and of course cocktails and maybe even some candied hazelnuts to start). This is just what happened last Tuesday when we ended up splitting the Garnet yam and quinoa cakes w fennel and almond as a snacky beginning to our meal. And wow – they were so good.
I’m always on the hunt for new quinoa/interesting whole grains recipes and this one definitely got my attention with the warm spices, creamy yam, and a fennel shallot salad on the side. I really wanted to try and reverse-engineer it at home but then I thought maybe I could try and get the actual recipe. It only took asking one contact and I got an email for Jenn Louis, Chef/Co-Owner of Sunshine Tavern. So I sent her a message, asked her for the recipe, and if I could post it here. She got back to me an hour or so later with the recipe. So cool!
This dish will work with either cooked, mashed garnet yam* . . . → Read More: Yam and Quinoa Cakes from Portland’s Sunshine Tavern
2021 SE Clinton Street
Portland, Oregon 97202
Last week, I was invited to an event at Fifty Licks – an ice cream social. Myself and about seven other bloggers tried ice creams, sorbets, and cocktails. And for once, I wasn’t the only one taking photos of my food. (That’s not even true anymore — it seems a lot of times when we go out anywhere, the people next to us are photographing their food as well. Sigh).
Anyway. This awesome evening at SE Portland’s Fifty Licks started with owner Chad Draizin (pdx transplant all the way from south Florida) making Cafe Cubano (Cuban coffee) for everyone and then we dug into the many ice creams, sorbets, and cocktails!
We tried: Stumptown Coffee, Tahitian Vanilla, Oregon Raspberry, Toasted Milk, Jasmine Tea, Blood Orange Creamsicle, Passionfruit with Sichuan Peppercorns sorbet, Coconut Lemon Saffron sorbet, and Chocolate with Toasted Oat Milk sorbet. Oh and also the Furacão, Nordic Palmer, and Velvet Shiso cocktails. The ice cream and sorbet flavors were really clean and well defined. No tricky, fancy business going on here – just really great ingredients and full, full, amazing flavor!
In a . . . → Read More: An Ice Cream Social at Fifty Licks in SE Portland