Monday, July 25, 2011

LA Street Food Fest

LA Street Food Festival

We came. We saw. We ate. A lot

Ballywood Meatball from Great Balls on Tires Truck
Great Balls on Tires:  Ballywood  (Indian meatball on rice)

Double Fried Sweet Ginger Chicken Wings from Starry Kitchen
Starry Kitchen: Double Fried Sweet Ginger Chicken Wings

Pandan Donut Holes from Starry Kitchen
Starry Kitchen:  Pandan Donut Holes

Mini Pastrami Sandwich from The Oinkster
The Oinkster:  Mini Pastrami Sandwich

Habanero Chicken Chili Fries from The Frysmith
The Frysmith: Habanero Chicken Chili Fries

Plain and Simple Melt from The Grilled Cheese Truck
Grilled Cheese Truck: Plain & Simple MELT

Pacific Oyster Asada with Chicharron Short Rib, Serrano Ponzu Butter, Lemongrass Foam from Mision 19 (aka the best oysters EVER)
Javier Plascencia / Mision 19:  Pacific Oyster Asada w/ Chicharron Short Rib, Serrano Ponzu Butter, Lemongrass Foam

Sea Urchin Tostada from La Guerrerense
Sabina Bandera / La Guerrerense:  Sea Urchin Tostada

Vampiros from Mexicali Taco & Co.
Mexicali Taco & Co:  Vampiros (garlic infused quesadilla)

Cheeseburger "Dumplings" from The Dim Sum Truck
Dim Sum Truck: Cheeseburger "Dumpling"

Samosas with Apple Tamarind and Spicy Coconut Chutney from The Naan Stop Truck
Naan Stop:  Samosas w/ Apple Tamarind and Spicy Coconut Chutney

Mojito Ice from Ice Ice Shavie
Ice Ice Shavie: Mojito (mint, lime)

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Monday, July 18, 2011

Blueberry Ginger Sorbet

Blueberry Ginger Sorbet (Fruit)

After two months of May Gray and June Gloom, summer has finally arrived in Southern California. I spent most of a few weekends ago in the pool eating popsicles. It was the only way I could cool down. I made this sorbet a month ago and wanted to make it again, but didn't feel like lugging my ice cream maker to my friend's house where I was house-sitting. I'm sort of obsessed with blueberries. I always forget about them until they are in season and then I end up buying them every week. Sometimes I snack on them. Other times, I use them in fabulous recipes to share with friends. This sorbet came to me as I was snacking on some blueberries at work. I was struck by the gingery notes in the berries and thought the combination sounded intriguing. I need to play around with this recipe a bit more to make the ginger a more pronounced flavor, but it is definitely there in this version and makes a perfect light summer dessert.

Blueberry Ginger Sorbet
(By Esi)

1 1/4 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1 2-inch piece of ginger, unpeeled
3 cups frozen blueberries
Juice from 1 large lemon
2 tablespoons vodka

In a large saucepan, stir the water, sugar, and ginger over medium-low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Once the sugar has dissolved, remove the pan from the heat and let sit for 20 minutes until cooled and the ginger has infused the simple syrup. Remove the ginger from the pan.

Stir in the blueberries, lemon juice, and vodka. You can either transfer this mixture to a blender or use an immersion blender to mix until everything is blended. Process in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions.

Transfer the sorbet to a container and freeze for 2-4 hours before serving.

Printable Recipe

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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Night + Market Happy Hour

I'm always going on about the fact that happy hour is not something I can usually attend because of my work hours. It just seems so unfair. Luckily, there are a few places that have solved that for me. Night + Market, the newish restaurant next to Talesai has happy hour until 8pm every day and all night on Wednesdays. Huzzah! I just had to check it out. I convinced my friend (who is not an adventurous eater by any means) to join me at Night + Market on a recent Wednesday night. Night + Market is chef Kris Yenbamroong's way of bringing Thai street food to West Hollywood. He's the son of Talesai's owners and was itching to do something a bit different than the typical Thai favorites thatbhe dishes up next door.

The complimentary shrimp chips are so addictive.

Shrimp Chips at Night + Market

Because of Kristina's eating restrictions, our ordering choices were really limited so we ordered one happy hour dish, the papaya salad, and one non-happy hour dish, the catfish tamale. The papaya salad is crunchy and sweet and totally refreshing.

Papaya Salad at Night + Market

I actually was skeptical about the tamale because I don't enjoy tamales in general, but I was pleasantly surprised by this. It is a tamale only in technique. The catfish fillet is surrounded by herbs and chilies and baked in a banana leaf. It is wonderfully spicy and reminiscent of some of Jitlada's finest heat. Kristina wasn't too thrilled with the catfish so I got to eat most of it myself.

Catfish Tamale at Night + Market

To finish out the night, we were treated to servings of the coconut and pandan ice creams.  The coconut was surprisingly salty in a good way, but the pandan was addictive. It was hard to stop at one bite despite my usual aversion to dessert.

Coconut and Pandan Ice Creams at Night + Market

Since the restaurant is walking distance from my office, I'm looking forward to returning and hopefully with someone who will let me order the infamous fried pig tails.

Night + Market
9043 Sunset Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069
(310) 275-9724

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

LA Street Food Fest Preview

This coming weekend, one of LA's most loved food events will be taking place at the Rose Bowl. LA Street Food Festival is a celebration of street food from all over the world. LA is now known for the incredible amount of food trucks that take residence, but there will not just be food trucks at this event. Expect Baja chefs cooking regional favorites, two beer gardens, photo booths, tequila tastings, entertainment, cooking demonstrations and more.

LA Street Food Festival Preview

I recently had the opportunity to attend a preview of Street Food Fest and it was a real treat. Held at soon to be open Iota Cafe in Koreatown, we were treated to a wide variety of delicacies and we also got to see the beauty of a traditional Korean tea ceremony.

This buttermilk popcorn chicken from the Mighty Boba truck was insanely addictive.

Buttermilk Popcorn Chicken from the Mighty Boba Truck

Okonomiyaki from the Glowfish truck was also addictive topped with bacon and shrimp and bonito flakes.

Okonomiyaki with Shrimp and Bacon from the Glowfish Truck

Just when I thought I was full, Iota Coffee and Bakery treated us to an insane amount of savories and sweets from their own kitchen. My favorite was the sweet sour spicy crispy wings. Not quite on the same level as Kyochon, but delicious nonetheless.

They also gave us a delightful array of desserts. Red velvet cheesecake, surprisingly light choclate mouse, and a strawberry shortcake cake.

SSS Wings at Iota Coffee and Bakery

Hibachi Steak at Iota Coffee and Bakery

Chicken Skewer Katsu Salad

Desserts from Iota Coffee and Bakery

After we were sufficiently full, we headed out to the back patio to watch the Korean tea ceremony. It was beautiful.

Korean Tea Ceremony

Not only does the ticket price for the festival include all the food, drink, and entertainment, but a portion of the proceeds will help benefit the Downtown Women's Center which helps homeless women try to end their homelessness.

This festival just so happens to be taking place during the dreaded "Carmageddon" weekend here in LA. Take the train! Free shuttles will be transporting passengers from the Memorial Park Station on the Gold Line directly to the event. Courtyard Marriott in Pasadena will be providing exclusive rates to attendees if you wish to make a weekend of it. I'm so excited to attend this event. Hope to see you there!

To learn more about the event an to purchase tickets, click here.

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Monday, July 11, 2011

Grilled Peaches with Ice Cream and Blueberry "Fudge" and a Giveaway!!

Grilled Peaches with Ice Cream and Blueberry "Fudge"

One of my favorite stores in LA isn't a fancy clothing boutique. It's Monsieur Marcel at the Original Farmers Market. This tiny gourmet store is a treasure trove of hard to find goodies. Sometimes I love going to the store just to look around and imagine the possibilities. I was recently treated to a whole bag of fun stuff from the store. The original plan was to show you something I made with their amazing lemon lavender curd, but the pics didn't come out so well. I wanted to make it again, but with the recent heat we've been experiencing, I was loathe to turn on my oven again. Instead I fired up the grill for some peaches. I had a friend over for dinner a couple weeks ago and made this for dessert. I couldn't resist trying it again this past weekend. This recipe was inspired by a grilled peach post I recently saw on Lisa Is Cooking. Peaches are in full swing at the farmers market. I was pleasantly surprised to cut these particular peaches open and see the lovely pinky/orange interior. Aren't they gorgeous? Grilling them intensifies the flavor a bit and the tart vinegar with the ice cream is a perfect pairing.

Beautiful Peaches

Now I realize that not everyone has this amazing store near them and access to Monsieur Marcel's wonderful products. So this is where the giveaway comes in. The store will give one of my readers their own bottle of blueberry vinegar. Just visit their Facebook page and "like" it. Leave a comment mentioning Dishing Up Delights and what you would make if you had a bottle of the vinegar. A winner will be picked on Monday, July 18th. Good luck!

Grilled Peaches with Ice Cream and Blueberry "Fudge"
(By Esi)

Makes 4 servings

1 1/4 cup blueberry vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar
2 firm peaches, halved and pitted
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Vanilla ice cream for serving
Blueberries for garnish

In a small saucepan, combine the vinegar and sugar. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to low. Cook, stirring occasionally until the vinegar has reduced and thickened to 1 1/2 teaspoons, about 35 minutes. Set aside to cool.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter and olive oil over low heat. Preheat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Brush each peach half with some of the butter and oil mixture. Grill the peaches cut side down until warmed through and marks appear, about 3 minutes.

Serve the peaches slightly warm or at room temperature with a scoop of ice cream and a drizzle of the vinegar reduction. Garnish with blueberries.

Printable Recipe

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Friday, July 8, 2011

LA Vegan Beer Festival

When I told my friends I was going to a vegan beer festival, most of them asked why. The next question was "isn't all beer vegan?". Well, that was a simpler answer. Like wine, beer goes through a filtering process to get to the finished product. Some of the ingredients in the clarifying agents may not be vegan or even vegetarian. Honey, gelatin, and insects are just a few of the ingredients that can make a beer non-vegan. To show that beers can still be tasty and vegan,  Quarry Girl paired up with Tony's Darts Away to host the second annual Vegan Beer Festival at the Roxy. Obviously I'm not a vegan, but I do appreciate vegan food, and I'll take any excuse to drink beer at one in the afternoon without judgment.

2nd Annual LA Vegan Beer Festival

2nd Annual LA Vegan Beer Festival

Besides the beer, there were a handful of food trucks offering only vegan options. I wish I could say that the vegan hot dog from Franken's was great...but it wasn't.

2nd Annual LA Vegan Beer Festival

Just say no to vegan hot dogs. (I really should have gotten the tofu banh mi from Mandoline Grill which I heard was excellent)

2nd Annual LA Vegan Beer Festival

The beer was much better than the hot dog. My favorites were the Pineapple brew from Maui, a Belgian Pale Ale, and the Speedway Stout (thanks HC)

2nd Annual LA Vegan Beer Festival

There were a few bands entertaining people inside. More entertaining to me was an elderly gentleman who could not stop getting his groove on.

2nd Annual LA Vegan Beer Festival

In all, I had a great time

2nd Annual LA Vegan Beer Festival

These vegans mean business

2nd Annual LA Vegan Beer Festival

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Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Fava Bean and Roasted Cherry Tomato Crostini with Burrata and Basil

Fava Bean and Roasted Cherry Tomato Crostini with Burrata and Basil

What better way to celebrate America's independence than with great food, poolside hanging, wine, and watching fireworks on the roof? Monday's potluck was one of our best to date and of course it was made a million times better by the awesome food my friends made. Of course I didn't show up empty handed. These crostini were my sole contribution to the feast. The roasted tomatoes are juicy and bursting with sweetness and are lovely with the creamy burrata and fava beans. The original recipe suggests that if you can't find favas, green peas are an acceptable substitute. Luckily, I live in Los Angeles where almost anything is available and it was easy for me to find favas at the farmers market. Shelling them by hand was not so fun, but it was a small price to pay. Check out some of the other goodies we indulged in that day.

Peach, Mozzarella, and Prosciutto Salad

Peach, Mozzarella, and Prosciutto Salad



Watermelon and Feta

Watermelon and Feta

Summer Berry Trifle

Summer Berry Trifle

Fava Bean and Roasted Cherry Tomato Crostini with Burrata and Basil
(Adapted from Refinery 29)

1 baguette, sliced into 1/2-inch pieces
1 pound fresh fava beans, shelled
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved (or quartered if they are large tomatoes)
3 tablespoons basil, julienned
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 pound Burrata, sliced 1/2-inch thick

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Drizzle the bread with olive oil and put on a baking sheet. Bake for 5 minutes on each side until the bread is crisp and toasted. Remove the bread from the pan.

Turn the oven up to 400 degrees. Spread the tomatoes on the baking sheet. Drizzle the tomatoes with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast the tomatoes for 15-20 minutes until the tomatoes are bursting and slightly blistered. Set aside to cool slightly. Meanwhile, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the fava beans and boil for about 2 minutes or just until they float to the top. Place the fava beans in an ice bath and once they have cooled, remove the thick outer coating from the beans.

To make the crostini, top each slice of bread with a slice of burrata. Top the burrata with some of the tomatoes and fava beans. Sprinkle the basil over the top. If desired, you can drizzle more oil over the top of each crostini.

Printable Recipe

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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Bridlewood Estate Winery - Bridlewood Gallery Opening

When I got an email inviting me to Bridlewood Estate Winery to check out their gallery opening, I knew I couldn't turn it down. In spite of a weekend filled with dancing, vegan beer, and general insanity, I made sure I was up early on Sunday morning to board the shuttle to Santa Ynez.  Bridlewood is an wonderfully picturesque winery and it's not just everyday visitors who get inspired by the tranquil surroundings. A handful of artists have made everything from paintings, to pottery, to photographs all based on the art of wine making. To celebrate the opening of Bridlewood Gallery the winery opened their doors for a day of food, wine, and art.

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Bridlewood Estate Winery

We were offered several appetizers and I was too busy shoving them in my mouth to get pictures of them. The mini truffle grilled cheese sandwiches and chicken skewers with plantains were among my favorites.We missed out on the dessert selection because were kept going back for extra servings of the 2008 Block 5 Syrah. It was definitely the best wine we tasted that day, but the 2010 Viognier Reserve was a close second. We were also able to taste a few wines that were still in barrels. I was fascinated by the pouring process. More so than the actual wine which definitely needed to be aged some more, but had potential.

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Wine glasses in hand, we went for a self-guided tour of the grounds.

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Bridlewood Estate Winery

Bridlewood Estate Winery

The place is so beautiful, it's not difficult to see why my friends chose to get married there a few years ago. It was hard to say goodbye, but after a few hours, we packed up our to-go lunches and boarded the shuttle back to the city of angels. It was such a wonderful day, I didn't want it to end. Click here to see my full picture gallery from the day.

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