dinner

You are currently browsing articles tagged dinner.

It was a cold but beautiful weekend to be in one of the most beautiful places in New England, the Portland, Maine area. We’ve made several trips to Maine in the past and always look for reasons to visit. . . we even have a trip to Camden booked for April. I am counting the days until it’s warmer!

A few past Maine blog posts:

Freeport and Camden Maine

Hartstone Inn, Camden, Maine

Our friends recently moved to Maine, which gives us an important reason to visit. After our second annual Halfway to Dot Day 5k race (which was absolutely bloody freezing) we hit the road, stopping for lunch in Portsmouth and then heading on to beautiful Cape Elizabeth.

My first order of business was a New England-y photo shoot for Nautical Gin, a brand I have been working with this year. Our friends brought us to Kettle Cove, which was a stunning location and a place I would love to visit again when it is warmer than 10 degrees.

Kettle Cove Maine

After some snacks and relaxing, we headed to downtown Portland for drinks at the Top of the East in the Westin Portland Harborview.

Eastland Portland Maine The views and Christmas decorations were gorgeous, and the cocktails delicious. It was definitely the perfect place to kick off our night out in Portland.

Eastland 15th floor Portland

After our round of drinks, we headed to the main event, dinner at Sur Lie, where we had one of the best meals we’ve enjoyed in a long time and ordered half of the menu.

Cocktails Sur Lie Portland

First, more cocktails: Forest Moon of Endor {Four Roses bourbon, Applejack, Kina, pecan orgeat, lime, sassafras bitters}

This definitely had a nice, warming autumnal feel and taste; it was reminiscent of apple pie but not too sweet.

Fried Milk Braised Cauliflower

{Fried Milk Braised Cauliflower, honey soy glaze} – Sweet, with little kicks of spice, earthy, delicious, the way cauliflower should be

Smith's Log Smokehouse Sausage

{Smith’s Log Smokehouse Sausage, orange peel & honey pork sausage, house pickles, roasted garlic} I had heard great things about Smith’s meats, and they were confirmed when I had this sausage. Melty roasted garlic and paper thin slices of bread paired deliciously with it. ,

chicken croquettes

{Chicken Croquettes}

I was a huge fan of these when I was a kid, and this more gourmet version was even better.

 

IMG_0690

Pink bubbles go with everything. I am loving Franciacorta lately and Italian bubbly in general. This was the perfect choice for pairing with so many different dishes and for celebrating new beginnings.

the best scallops ever

{Seared Scallops, white sweet potato puree, pickled red onion, pineapple mojo, lime}

We agreed that these were some of the most perfect scallops we have ever had.

 

Captains' Cut Cod*

{Captains’ Cut Cod*, butternut squash purée, pecan, apple, maple syrup}

I normally wouldn’t think of cod and autumn flavors like these going together, but this dish was amazing. The fish was cooked to perfection, and everything just worked so beautifully.  This dish made me want to experiment with fish more at home.

 

 Panko Crusted Pork Cutlet*

{Panko Crusted Pork Cutlet*, L.P. Bisson & Sons pork loin, chicken gravy, Whatley Farm organic duck egg, house pickles}

We couldn’t decide between the two pork dishes so we ordered both. Again, cooked to perfection, and the meat was paired with seasonal, creative flavors.

 L.P. Bissons Smoked Pork Chop

{L.P. Bissons Smoked Pork Chop, carrot-cream cheese puree, walnut, torpedo onions, fennel, brown butter}

The contrast of flavors between the rich pork and carrot-cream cheese and the crunchy, tangy onions made this one of my favorite dishes of the night.

  apple cider donut {House Apple Cider Donut, apple cider donut, pecan maple syrup, pumpkin gelato}

Chocolate Pot de Creme

{Chocolate Pot de Creme, espresso gelato, orange laced madeleines}

Heavenly desserts could not be passed up, and we couldn’t get over how delicious both of these were. Every bite of this meal was so well-planned and thought out. The perfect ending to the night was a visit from the chef to see how things were. Between the service, the wine pairings, the ingredients, and the cozy, simple decor, Sur Lie quietly and understatedly outdid itself.

NespressoSunday brought a nice lie-in, Nespresso (which I hadn’t had in awhile. . . oh how I love it!), and a walk around Portland Head Light, which was decorated for Christmas and looking like a picture perfect New England scene. I love Maine.

Portland Head Light

Portland Head Light

 Portland Head Light  

Before we reluctantly made our way back to Boston, we stopped for brunch at The Porthole, a hidden-away diner-type restaurant and bar that we try to visit every time we are in Portland. Their brunch is great, and in warmer months, the patio is the place to be for live music and local Portland beer.

I had to go for the Lobster Bennie when in Maine!

lobster benedict

the porthole portland maine

It was an excellent weekend, and while we were sad to see our friends move away, they couldn’t have picked a better place for us to visit! I look forward to discovering more of Portland and the surrounding areas in the future, especially when the weather is better!

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Share

Tags: blogging, brunch, cocktails, dinner, Food, Maine, ME, New England, Portland, Travel, travel blog, travel blogger, wine

To read about my Just Add Cooking April meals, click here.

As I mentioned last month, Just Add Cooking has generously offered me a week of meals a month for three months to review the service. If you read about my first experience with Just Add Cooking, you’ll know that I was hesitant to try meal delivery services but then completely changed my mind once I tried it.

One thing that keeps standing out to me is how many local ingredients Just Add Cooking uses. It’s my favorite part of getting the box, diving in and seeing what companies I recognize locally and which ones I need to learn more about. I also really love that everything is portioned out and ready to go. Being primarily responsible for meals and having a busy day job means dinner burnout, and having this delivery on a Sunday takes away a lot of the thinking, prep, and urge to just order something over GrubHub! It makes healthy, quick meals easy and also really takes the guesswork out of cooking for novices in the kitchen. Below I have reviewed each recipe we cooked last week, also sharing photos from the Just Add Cooking website, since mine are not as pretty. . . Click on the photo to get the recipe!

Seared Prawns with Salsa - Just Add Cooking

Nola's Fine Foods Salsa shrimp and salsa recipe

Seared Prawns with Salsa – I thought this recipe sounded really interesting, and we love prawns, so we went with it. I was delighted that salsa from local company Nola’s Fine Foods was included. . . I could (and um, did) eat this salsa out of the container with a spoon. It’s SO delicious. Olive Connection in Brookline carries it!

This recipe was super quick and easy and filled us both up while also leaving some of the rice for the next day. I loved the contrast of the tang and spice in the salsa with the raisins. This is a dish I would definitely love to make again. I would probably double my salsa portion. In case you didn’t know, salsa is one of my favorite foods and would be prominent in my last meal if ever I had to design one.

 

 

 

Beef Burger and Green Beans- Just Add Cooking

Beef Burger and Green Beans – I didn’t get any photos of this one because mine turned out really un-pretty. As with the burgers we had last month, I thought these were missing a binder like bread crumbs. The flavor in them, however, was excellent, with a nice bite of earthy oregano. The real stars of this dish were the plentiful veggie sides. Fresh green beans with completely addictive fried onion sprinkles and carrots with caraway seriously filled our plates and made for great additions to lunch salads the next day. After my first experience with the brand, where I wanted more veggies, they have definitely responded by adding them in, which makes the meals even more complete.

 

 

Bondat Foods seasoning

Joe's Kitchen Chickpeas

cauliflower and chickpea tacos    

BBQ Cauliflower Chickpea Tacos

BBQ Cauliflower Chickpea Tacos – I was definitely most excited about this one, because, tacos! The green beans that came with didn’t make it to dinner; we snacked on them raw while we prepped because they were so good. The Massachusetts-made Bondat Foods taco seasoning mix added amazing flavor to chickpeas from Joe’s Kitchen in Vermont and yummy roasted cauliflower. The tacos were stuffed with a creamy coleslaw, which I actually made with purple cabbage we had that was about to go bad. We used the cabbage provided in the box for another coleslaw later in the week though! This was a seriously filling dish, and the mix of cauliflower and chickpeas made it a really hearty vegetarian option that my meat-loving husband could get behind.

All in all, another win for Just Add Cooking in our house! I think ordering the service will be particularly handy for those beach and boat weekends where we just want our meals to be easy and for the ingredients to be delivered to our doorstep.

 

My May Just Add Cooking delivery was provided free of charge in exchange for a blog post. I have been provided with the opportunity to share an affiliate code for new orders, where I receive compensation if the code is used. All opinions are my own.

Place your order using code TRAVEL, and I will donate my affiliate proceeds to Boston’s Forgotten Felines.

Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

Share

Tags: cooking, dinner, Food, Just Add Cooking, meal planning, recipes

I wrote the below post before the horrific terrorist attacks on Paris on Friday. I have been thinking about all of those affected  by the attacks all weekend and still, like so many others, have no ability to make sense of what happened or the state our world is in. I spent much of the weekend anxious and sad.

I thought about not posting today, but ultimately, I can sit around and feel sad or I can share my love of life with blog readers, people who have, through technology, become friends over the years. I hope that continuing to share things we love and to keep an eye on one another and to connect can help us to keep the love and light in the world when there are some determined to take it away.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`

I’ve mentioned it a few times, but our dining habits lately have been leaning sharply toward Dorchester. We’ve visited Tavolo, Ester, and Ashmont Grill quite frequently, and they are so good and so close that it’s hard not to  pull ourselves away.

Last week after drinks with friends we found ourselves in the Fort Point area of Boston and suddenly starving. We were parked by Bastille Kitchen, so we decided to go in and grab a couple of appetizers.

I instantly fell in love with the space and the buzz of energy and activity. The restaurant was busy but had a nice noise level and lots of smiling patrons.

Domaine Augis "La Rosée"

They had a nice by-the-glass wine selection, and I of course went with pink bubbly, Domaine Augis "La Rosée", which added to the already celebratory Friday mood.

I had started the week off with a terrible 36 hour bug and as a result hadn’t eaten much more than soup all week, but at Bastille Kitchen my appetite came back with a vengeance. Their bread basket is not just bread, but warm, buttery mini croissants, which I basically attacked. They were flaky and heavenly. If I could have a warm basket delivered every morning, I would be all set.

warm croissants

Date night always includes oysters, and we polished these off in no time. Fresh, cold, perfect – I love oysters this time of year!

oysters

Now, the plan was to share some appetizers and then to head home, but my ravenous post-illness body saw the Porterhouse for two, and that was all I could think about.

Sides It came with asparagus, potato gratin, grilled tomatoes, and sauce bordelaise, and we got a bit of horseradish on the side, and it was all simply dreamy. The meat barely needed a knife. It was so tender and flavorful, and all of the vegetables were the perfect accompaniments. We ate every bite; I definitely took the lead on this endeavor!

Porterhouse for Two It felt so good to want to eat after feeling so miserable, so we ordered dessert. Profiteroles, light, fluffy, another pastry win, were stuffed with caramel chip ice cream and had a warm hazelnut chocolate sauce for pouring.

profiteroles

The service at Bastille Kitchen was as exquisite as the food and ambiance. Our server and everyone who cared for us were so pleasant and attentive and smiling all the while. It was just a lovely experience. I can’t wait to return.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

Share

Tags: Boston, date night, Dining out, dinner, Food, Restaurants, wine

« Older entries

new restaurant
WordPress SEO fine-tune by Meta SEO Pack from Poradnik Webmastera