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Archive for August, 2009

I suddenly don’t have as much free time anymore. I found a job!! I am very excited about the opportunity! I started working on Tuesday, and will be working there until the end of the year. Also on Tuesday, it was our 8-year anniversary. These were two good excuses to celebrate. We decided to go out to dinner at Lento located in Village Gate.

I have been anxiously waiting to go to Lento. It is on the pricey side, so it is a good place to go for a special occasion. The first time I read about it, I was in awe! Their menu sounded so delicious! Also, I was happy to learn that they support local farmers, one of them being my favorite farmer, Jess from Raindance Harvest Farms, who grows those amazing heirloom tomatoes that I mentioned before. Another great thing is that their menu lists all the local farmers that they work with. The farms are located in Lyons, Ontario, Penfield, Lima, and Gorham. They also make a lot of things in-house, including cream cheese, pasta, and sorbet. Additionally, according to their menu, all the meat, fish, and seafood that they serve are “free of artificial growth hormones and are not fed any animal by-products.” Need I say more?? My kind of a place!!

“Ok, so it sounded great on paper, but how was the food?” you ask. Oh the food…. Where should I start?? It was just heavenly! Yes, it was on the same scale as the Scotch Ale Crème Brulee. And this time it was heavenly from the drinks all the way to the dessert. I definitely need to mention a few of the things that we had.

To start, I ordered a purple basil, lemon, and vodka martini. Yum!! It was an interesting combination. Very refreshing! Apparently, every Tuesday is $1 oyster night. I have never eaten an oyster before, so this was the perfect time to try it. Our waitress suggested that we order an East coast oyster and a West coast oyster. I really loved the west cost oyster! It reminded me of the ocean – salty and ocean scented. The East coast oyster was a lot milder. Joel liked that one. He is not a big fish eater, so I knew that was going to be the case. For my main dish, I ordered the Pan seared diver scallops with a summer succotash of sweet corn, white bean, rice, zucchini, shrimp, and tomato over a silky summer squash sauce, and frizzled leeks. It was just amazing!! The scallops were perfectly prepared, and the sauce was silky and sweet. The succotash was very nice, and it worked perfectly with the scallops and sauce. I was sad to see it disappear. :) Joel ordered Fresh black pepper pappardelle pasta tossed with red wine and tomato braised rabbit, summer squashes, kalamata olives, broccoli, peppers, rosemary, and Pecorino Romano. We were both a little weary about the rabbit, but it was really good! It was very tender and not gamy at all. Also, the rest of the ingredients nicely complimented it.

I told our waitress that it was our 8-year anniversary, and she was very sweet! I was pleasantly surprised to see “Happy Anniversary” written on the large plate that carried my dessert. That was a very nice gesture from her and the kitchen!

Peach Sorbet at Lento.

Peach Sorbet at Lento. I took the picture with Joel's camera phone (no, he does not have an iPhone). :)

I ordered their homemade peach sorbet. It was delicious! You could really taste the peaches in it.

I wish that the restaurant was not so pricey because I would go there every week. It is now by far my favorite restaurant in Rochester. I guess I could just go on Tuesday nights and have some oysters and a drink. :)

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I am not a big fan of riding in the rain. I avoid it like the plague! However, sometimes the rain comes out of nowhere and you are stuck in it.

Joel and I decided to ride the Fast Friends Friday RBC ride on Friday evening. The ride starts at Dryer Rd Park in Victor. On the way to the ride start, a cloud was hanging over us, and these huge rain drops fell for about 2 seconds. It was sunny everywhere else, so I felt safe. We set off dry from the ride start. Down Dryer Rd, up New Seaburry Ln, straight on School Rd, up and down Boughton Hill Rd, straight on Brace Rd, slight up on Rice Rd, straight on Pond Rd… rain drops… and all of a sudden a downpour! The sun was still shining everywhere else. It was like a scene from a cartoon, where the cloud is hanging only above the cartoon character. I could feel my shoes filing up with a puddle of water. I hate wet socks! I was drenched! All I could think of was how horrible it was to be riding in the rain. Joel was annoyed and kept shaking his head. “I told you it would rain!”, he said. As we were heading back to the park down 444, Joel pointed to something to his right. It was a rainbow! A full rainbow! It was the most beautiful and vibrant rainbow I have ever seen! Every color was visible and radiant. At one point, another rainbow formed. It was faint, but still a pretty sight. I kept seeing people stopping on the side of the road to take pictures of it. I was very jealous! I really wanted to stop to take a picture of it with my camera phone, but it was pouring and thought that it would not be good for my phone to get drenched.

This is not the first time I got stuck in the rain while riding. Also, this is not the first time that I saw a rainbow while being stuck in the rain while riding. This is what I love about riding. You never know what you will see – rain or shine. Now I have to go lube my chain…

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I know that my posts have only been about food so far. What can I say… I really enjoy food! I did go for a bike ride on Monday evening and it was lovely. I had great company, the ride was very scenic, and I saw an amazing sunset. Ok, back to the food…

I am a sucker for crêpes! I especially love crêpes filled with a thin layer of jam. I could eat them all day. Crêpes for me are comfort food. I grew up making and eating them. My mom would make the batter in a huge pot, which would yield maybe a 12 inch stack of cooked crêpes. It would take us hours to make them. I remember one incident that makes me laugh every time. I grew up on the 7th floor of an apartment building in Bucharest, Romania. Our kitchen window looked onto a small courtyard where the residents parked their cars. My cousins were over so we decided to make crêpes. As we tried to flip a crêpe (I don’t remember exactly who was making it), it hit the ceiling and fell on the floor. My cousin quickly picked it up and threw it out the window. It landed on a car! :) We could not stop laughing. :) Imagine walking out to your car and seeing a crêpe on the car’s hood. It was very funny! My mom was a little annoyed at first but thought it was pretty funny as well.

Whenever I visit a city, I always search to see if that city has a crêperie. We recently visited my sister- and brother-in-law in Madison, WI. As we were thinking about places to go for breakfast, I asked if there was a crêperie in the area. We quickly Googled crêpes in Madison, and we found one. I was ecstatic!! :)

Breakfast at Bradbury's in Madison, WI.

Breakfast at Bradbury's in Madison, WI.

Bradbury’s is one of the greatest crêperies I have ever visited, and I have visited a bunch of them (I have been to crêperies in France, Romania, Toronto, California, and here in Rochester). The place was just lovely! If I were to open a crêperie (which I have thought and dreamed about), it would be just like Bradbury’s.

My crêpe. YUM!! :)

My crêpe. YUM!! :)

The restaurant was very small, but that is what I loved about it. The atmosphere was cozy and warm. And the crêpes were to die for! The coffee was amazing too, which is difficult to find around here. You can tell that the owners really thought about the space and the quality of their products. They also use only local ingredients from farmers around that area, which I love!

Cappucino

Cappucino

Who can resist a crêpe and a good cup of coffee? My kind of breakfast! :)

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I was in a mood for cake this weekend. We were expecting friends over for dinner last night, so I thought that it was the perfect excuse to make a cake. I immediately went to one of my favorite food blogs, Smitten Kitchen. To my luck there was a new post for an Espresso Chiffon Cake with Fudge Frosting recipe. Perfect, I thought!! And oh how perfect and delicious it was!!! I would place this as one of the best cakes that I have ever made. Even better than my infamous Chocolate Bundt Cake that I always make. Those of you who’ve had the cake, and ate almost the entire cake in one sitting with us (I will not mention any names, you know who you are), would say that I went mad. No, no… I am perfectly sane. :)

Coffee Chiffon Cake

My version of the Espresso Chiffon Cake. Delicious!!

A Few Dilemmas

The name of the cake is “Espresso” Chiffon Cake. The espresso is used for the cake batter as well as for the syrup that moistens the cake. I don’t have an espresso maker! :( Joel calmly suggested that I use coffee made in a French press. I was a little worried, but it worked nicely. You can definitely taste the coffee flavor. I bet that the espresso would yield an even more intense flavor though. If any of you make the cake and use espresso, let me know how it is. Also, if you don’t have an espresso maker, don’t fret! Just use some strong coffee instead.

Another dilemma that I had was the fact that the cake is supposed to be 3 layers. I only have 2 cake pans! I just divided the batter among the 2 pans, and it worked just as well. The cake layers collapsed as they were cooling, so I can’t imagine getting 3 layers out of the batter (I even followed her advice about not whipping the egg whites to a stiff peak). I don’t know what else to say about that.

The last dilemma that I had was the included fudge frosting recipe. It asked for 3 sticks of butter! Yikes!! I knew for sure that my stomach was going to hate me if I used that much butter (lactose intolerance!!!). I decided to use my secret frosting recipe. Ok, I’ll share it with you. I found the most amazing frosting in a box! It is Dr. Oetker Organics Chocolate Fudge Icing mix. I know what you are thinking… How can that be good? Oh, but it is! And it only uses 5 TBS of butter. Much more friendlier to my stomach! :)

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I signed up for WordPress a few months ago, and have not written anything since. I think that I found the inspiration for my first blog. :)

Last night, Joel and I decided to have dinner at the Tap & Mallet. In our opinion, it is a great place! They have the best beer selection in the Rochester area. (The Old Toad is pretty good too.) Their food is good, especially for being a bar. But most importantly, they have the most amazing and heavenly creme brulee. If you are ever in the mood for creme brulee, you have to try their home made Scotch Ale Creme Brulee. It is silky, flavorful, not too sweet, and the caramelized top is perfectly firm. As I said, it is heavenly! We have eaten it several times and it is always amazing. Who would have thought that a beer flavored creme brluee would taste so amazing!

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