Thursday, July 31, 2008

East Bay Culinary Center Second Annual Summer Culinary Expo

East Bay Restaurant Supply
Sacramento Main
522 North 12th Street
Sacramento, California 95811
(916) 440-0620 Main
(916) 440-1525 Fax

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Kabob House in Folsom

Kabob House

648 E Bidwell St

Folsom, CA 95630

(916) 983-6619

One word for my experience APATHETIC.

We ordered the spanakopita, dolmades and a large gyro.

Spanakopita: This was the first dish, my friend said it was chewy. I took a bite and it was like eating a tortilla with a little spinach. It was not light flaky like it was supposed to be. It was like something they microwaved out of a box.

Dolmades: Yes, not good nor bad just, "meh"

Gyro: You would think that this would be a fairly simple dish to pull off in a Greek restaurant. The major component, the meat, was flavorless like the meat was boiled not baked or roasted. The was no flavor from the lamb or from the spices. The Tzatziki Sauce was so watery it flowed out of the back of the gyro when I picked it up to eat it, what little there was of it.

To top it off the server never brought us any plates, did not clear any of the plates of the appetizers and they charged me for an ice tea refill. Who charges for each ice tea refill? Who lets food out of their kitchen like this? I really felt like no one cared about anything.

Kabob House on Urbanspoon

Friday, July 25, 2008

Le Pichet

Restaurant Le Pichet
1933 1st Avenue
Seattle, Washington 98101
Telephone: (206) 256-1499

This is a cozy little bistro with a solid menu executed well. There is not a place (that I know of) like this in Sacramento. The dish I was simple, but cooked properly. The ingredients complemented each other well. The quail was tender and juicy, but not gamy; the mushroom cream sauce was not too heavy and picked up some of the quail jus; the asparagus was fresh and went OK with the rest of the components, the livers brought some earthiness to the dish with the mushrooms and the noodles tied everything together.

The chocolate was thick, but not syrupy, warm and not too sweet with the whipped cream providing a nice cool contrast. A great end to the meal.

On their website is a schedule of different musical acts. All in all, the atmosphere is nice, the food was great as was the service as well as the conversation.

*Caille grillée sur pâtes fraîche à la crème de champignons
“Boneless Oregon quail, grilled, on house made noodles with chicken livers, asparagus, and mushroom cream

Drinking chocolate with whipped cream.

Le Pichet on Urbanspoon

Monday, July 21, 2008


Kru Contemporary Japanese Cuisine
2516 J Street
Sacramento, CA 95816
Phone: 916.551.1559

This was the best sushi that I have had in a long time. The fish was cut with precision, but delicately enough to show that the chef cares about the fish. (Yes, that is really how I felt). The fish flavor was clean and fresh enough that I could taste some of the ocean it was swimming in earlier that day.

One on the main reasons I wanted to try Kru was that the menu had more than just sushi. I have always wanted to try tuna collar (probably from watching too much Iron Chef). It was grilled tender and not dried out. Its flavor was like grilled tuna with a little more melt in your mouth quality. It was kind of like a tuna brisket.

Another thing that makes this place great is that they serve real wasabi. The experience is so much different than the powdered horseradish at most sushi places. The wasabi flavor is clean and briny, a little sweet and complements the fish with some heat instead of blowing out your sinuses.

The last thing I was impressed by was the roll. I am not a huge fan of rolls, especially at places like Mikuni's. Their sauces mask the flavor of everything so you cannot taste any of the individual components. The Jade roll had a balance of rice, lobster, crayfish, avocado, lettuce and the sauce matched well with each of these to bring it all together.

Overall, I would highly recommend this place if you are looking for a new sushi place.

Hatsumago sake

oysters - fresh pacific oysters, preserved wasabi root, ponzu,
chili paste, pink hawaiian sea salt

This is what real wasabi looks like; it's not from a can.

hamachi kama - charbroiled yellowtail collar, ponzu sauce

nigiri mix - assorted nigiri chef's choice

Jade - lobster tempura, crayfish salad, lolla rosso lettuce, chives, avocado, cucumbers, mamenori, teriyaki, and spicy cream sauces

Kru on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Petition: Save Sacramento's Taco Trucks

Go here to attest that you disagree with the Sacramento City Council's decision to criminalize most mobile food vendors in the city, and agree that you'd like our taco trucks back, health-inspected & safe, where they can serve Sacramento residents.

Recently, the Sacramento City Council almost-unanimously passed a resolution drastically restricting the ways in which mobile food vendors - principally taco trucks - may do business in the city. Even though the vast majority of Sacramento's taco trucks (including all those relied upon by downtown and Natomas third-shift employees) do business from private property - parking lots where they've received owner permission to be - the new city regulations basically tell property owners that they don't know what's best for themselves, and enact all sorts of new rules on the trucks.
The rules include:
  • no night operations (which will kill those trucks whose vast majority of customers are police officers, firefighters, hospital and sanitation workers and other night-shift folks who need to eat too);
  • trucks can't be parked in the same location for more than 30 minutes, making advertising, reputation & reliability all completely moot;
  • every time they move, trucks must be a significant distance from their old location, and a specified distance from a "residential neighborhood," language which is vague and undefined in the resolution and city planning codes.

City Council staff have claimed that they did indeed talk to taco truck owners, but we've been able to talk to over a dozen - including the proprietors of every downtown, Arden and Natomas area truck - and not a single one can remember ever being approached by anyone from the city; none were told about the city council meeting where the vote was held, and none have been told about the new regulations.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Salumi: Seattle trip continued

Salumi Artisan Cured Meats
309 Third Ave South Seattle, WA 98104
(between Main and Jackson, across from Seattle Lighting)
(206) 621-8772

Yes, I still am blogging about my Seattle trip because I ate A LOT! As you may or may not know this is Mario Batali's father's place. A meat lover's paradise. I bought my lunch here and sat down at one of the tables in Waterfall park. I got the porchetta sandwhich with peppers. Is there a better animal to pay tribute to? This could have easily fed two, but I was greedy and ate the whole thing :) I will definitelly have to return with a cooler to get some of the unusual products such as the lamb prosciutto.

The Porchetta: Salumi's tribute to the pig, pork butter-flied and stuffed with meat and spices. The bread was crusty and had enough body to stand up to the many juices from the meat and peppers. There were a few different types of meats seemingly cooked a few different ways that provided different textures and flavors. The bigger chunks on the edges were probably roasted shoulder, there was some braised sausage and some braised pork. The meat, the crusty bread and the slight heat of the peppers made one great sandwhich.

Waterfall Park

The Scene

Waterfall Park offers an escape from downtown without leaving it. The park encompasses exotic greenery, including ginkgo trees, with several benches and small tables and a 22-foot crashing waterfall, all within four stone walls. Though hidden from street view, the park's roaring cascade reveals its whereabouts to passersby. At noon on warm days, nearby nine-to-fivers assemble at the four small iron tables for an alfresco lunch.

The History

Waterfall Gardens was built by eight Japanese stone masons in 1977, in the tradition of New York City's "vest pocket parks": small, rubble-filled vacant lots among downtown buildings transformed into self-enclosed squares and locked up at night. Per instructions from park developer and United Parcel Service millionaire James Casey, the Boston architecture firm Masso Kinoshita surrounded the property with a massive fence and gates.


Salumi on Urbanspoon

Thursday, July 3, 2008

What's more American than apple pie?

To celebrate the 4th of July, I suggest reading or re-reading the US Declaration of Independence. The 4th is more than just hot dogs, hamburgers, fireworks and apple pie.

Speaking of which...Here is the recipe for Alton Brown's apple pie:

For the crust:
6 ounces unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 ounces vegetable shortening, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
5 to 7 tablespoons applejack
12 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 2 3/4 cups, plus extra for dusting
1 teaspoon table salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar

For the filling:

3 to 3 1/2 pounds apples, mixture of Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Braeburn and Golden Delicious, about 6 large apples

1/2 cup sugar, divided
3 tablespoons tapioca flour
2 tablespoons apple jelly
1 tablespoon apple cider
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground grains of paradise

For the crust:
Place the butter, shortening and applejack into the refrigerator for 1 hour.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, salt and sugar by pulsing 3 to 4 times. Add the butter and pulse 5 to 6 times until the texture looks mealy. Add the shortening and pulse another 3 to 4 times until incorporated.

Remove the lid of the food processor and sprinkle in 5 tablespoons of the applejack. Replace the lid and pulse 5 times. Add more applejack as needed, and pulse again until the mixture holds together when squeezed. Weigh the dough and divide in half. Shape each half into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to overnight.

For the filling:

Peel and core the apples. Slice into 1/2-inch thick wedges. Toss all of the apples with 1/4 cup of the sugar, place in a colander set over a large bowl and allow to drain for 1 1/2 hours.

Transfer the drained liquid to a small saucepan, place over medium heat and reduce to 2 tablespoons. Set aside to cool. Toss the apples with the remaining sugar, tapioca flour, jelly, cider, lime juice, salt and grains of paradise.

For assembling and baking the pie:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Remove one disk of dough from the refrigerator. Place the dough onto a lightly floured piece of waxed paper. Lightly sprinkle the top of the dough with flour and roll out into a 12-inch circle. Place into a 9 1/2 to 10-inch tart pan that is 2-inches deep. Gently press the dough into the sides of the pan, crimping and trimming the edges as necessary. Set a pie bird in the center of the bottom of the pan.

Place the apples into the unbaked pie shell in concentric circles starting around the edges, working towards the center and forming a slight mound in the center of the pie. Pour over any liquid that remains in the bowl. Roll out the second pie dough as the first. Place this dough over the apples, pressing the pie bird through the top crust. Press together the edges of the dough around the rim of the pie. Brush the top crust with the reduced juice everywhere except around the edge of pie. Trim any excess dough. Place the pie on a half sheet pan lined with parchment paper and bake on the floor of the oven for 30 minutes. Transfer to the lower rack of the oven and continue to bake another 20 minutes or until the apples are cooked through but not mushy. Remove to a rack and cool a minimum of 4 hours or until almost room temperature.