A trip to Des Moines is an ideal opportunity to replenish my chocolate supply at Stam on Ingersoll. The staff is always very friendly and helpful. Stam's chocolates are outstanding. The coating is both physically delicate and robustly flavorful. The fillings are wonderful. Thanks, folks!
A Dong is a Des Moines favorite and I used a visit as an opportunity to enjoy lunch. The proprietor was there to take my order. I took my lunch to my car to enjoy the nice day and delicious meal. Ginger gave the meal a wonderful tweak. Thanks, folks!
Mom's oven was a cornucopia when I was a kid. Baked goods poured out giving a bounty not just to us but to the entire neighborhood. It's about time that I baked the occasional loaf of banana bread for Mom.
Timing made La Galeria the perfect choice for dinner. Having had their ice cream in the past, I looked forward to dinner and I was not disappointed. My chicken mole was great, a perfect combination of savory and sweet. The creamy mole sauce was perfect comfort food. Thanks, folks!
I met Marie and Grant for breakfast at 4 Way in Cartersville. It's a wonderful place and reminiscent of the sort of diner you see in the Northeast. The small size makes for a great personal experience. I kept my breakfast simple: pancakes, sausage, coffee. This was a very satisfying breakfast. Thanks, folks!
Events led me to be in the neighborhood of Gu's Kitchen in Chamblee around lunch time. How could I resist? I ordered lunch with a half serving of dumplings and popcorn chicken. Dumplings are, of course Gu's Kitchen signature and were luscious. Their warmth and softness was wonderful; it also contrasted perfectly with the popcorn chicken. I ordered a hot sauce to complement the sauce that came with the chicken and enjoyed both. I sat in my car and enjoyed the day. Thank you, Gu's Kitchen staff!
I decided to mix things up at Village Burger and order their Chicago dog. I concluded during my time in Chicagoland that the Chicago dog is the pinnacle, the epitome of the hot dog. Village Burger represents itself very well with their implementation of this classic. A Chicago dog on a sunny day is a great experience. Thanks, folks!
Outdoor cooking is fun and flavorful. It requires a little more attention than indoor cooking. But, of course, that is part of the point. Cooking helps soothe the soul. Paying attention to something else provides rest through activity.
The Red Caboose in Chamblee makes a wonderful evening stop. I enjoy listening for trains and watching the sunset as I eat my ice cream. The Caboose has been here for a dozen years, which I think makes it a bona fide institution. Thanks, folks!
Bill introduced me to Tomatino's in Montgomery. They combine a bakery, coffee house, and pizzeria. Both their indoor and outdoor spaces are very open and comfortable. My pizza was tasty with excellent sauce. Thanks, folks!
Gates is classic Kansas City BBQ. They have several locations across town but I find their original Brooklyn Avenue spot to be particularly convenient for a road trip. "Hi, May I help..." The line is a classic food service setup, the menu is meat-o-licious. I took my ribs back to my car to enjoy. They were wonderfully meaty and just the right amount of sauce. The beans were savory and hearty. This made a wonderful meal to get me back on the road. Thanks, folks!
I had no idea that so many people go out for coffee and donuts on cold Saturday mornings. Every coffee or donut place I drove past had a long line. I finally obtained my caffeine and sugar fix at Cubby's on the Iowa/Nebraska border. Coffee and donut were both quite satisfying. Thanks, folks!
Witty and I enjoyed a satisfying lunch at Shokunin in the Lincoln Haymarket. I started with miso soup. Witty and I both ordered the sushi plate. It offers a just-right variety. Sushi is an interesting combination of delicateness and heartiness.
In the mood for something different for breakfast, I put together a sourdough version of the yested apple cake from Classic German Baking. I divided the dough into two pans, one batch each for two mornings. I added the sliced apples each morning. This dish makes a great breakfast item, not overly sweet or heavy.
I haven't made lasagne in quite some time. This used dried, store-bought noodles. It was filled with a ricotta/egg mixture and my homemade tomato sauce. THe result was creamy and hearty. Lasagne is wondeful winter comfort food.
I was hankering for caramel sauce on ice cream. But I only wanted a little and I didn't want to spend an hour making it. I decided to experiment with making a little sauce in the microwave. I heated the brown sugar and corn syrup in the microwave, then added some butter. The result wasn't ideal. I had overcooked the sauce. The tiny quantities make it extremely difficult to time the cooking; the microwave vessel makes it impossible to monitor as it cooks. That gave the sauce a burnt taste as well as very brittle. I suspect that a lot of practice could make this a viable option. But that defeats the purpose, doesn't it?
I was a little low on green sauce and jumped on the chance to make more when I saw tomatillos at Super Saver. I roasted the tomatillos, onion, and a couple of Anaheim peppers in the oven. I threw everything in the blender. Simple and tasty.
I was in the mood for pizza. I made a sourdough variant of classic pizza dough, complete with a little olive oil. I used my homemade tomato sauce and low moisture mozzarella. I made three pizzas out of the dough. This is the first result. For the second pizza, I cooked for a few minutes before adding the mozzarella. That reduced cheese scorching. For the third pizza, I eliminated the parchment. The result was crispier crust with just a couple of spots of sticking.
I odn't make waffles very often; the variety sounded good. I started by frying up some apples. I made sourdough waffle batter from a King Arthur Flour recipe. One of the tricks of waffle making is getting just the right amount of batter: fill the waffle iron, no overflow. I enjoyed with ricotta and a little honey. Delicious! I am grateful.