Sunday, March 29, 2009

Nook

My friend Smiles introduced me to a lovely little brunch place on Restaurant Row a few weeks ago. On various websites, the food is described as "eclectic and international" but their brunch fare is...regular brunch stuff. Albeit, delicious brunch stuff.

I've only been on Saturdays but the first time Smiles and I went, we waited about 15 minutes for a seat and once we were seated and had ordered, it took close to 45 minutes to get our food. It's a tiny holy in the wall with seating for about 20. The waiter seemed frazzled and Smiles claims that the brunch was awful only because the waiter kept telling our table neighbor that his girlfriend was beautiful, while totally ignoring us. Ah well. That day, we both ordered quiches that came with a side salad, and it was delicious and delightfully light. Definitely not one of those heavy quiches, even though I vaguely recall mine may have had cheese... (note to self - blogging a few weeks after the fact is never helpful to anyone). The waiter did, however, give us our coffees for free since we had waited so long (and because clearly, we were hideous...?) The bill came out to be just a little less than $20, I believe, so that combined with the lovely company made the poor service worth it.

Yesterday, Smiles and I were joined by a former co-worker and this time, I ordered an egg scramble with spinach, goat cheese, and tomatoes which came with "the house home fries" and a small salad. I was hoping there would be more spinach in it, but it was again, delightfully light and seasoned just right. I can't really figure out what the home fries are made of because they're an orange-y color but they're not as sweet as sweet potatoes... perhaps I should have asked. Their unsweetened iced tea was a bit watery, though, but that's really my only complaint. The service was wonderful and for a table of three, we only waited 10-15 minutes, and never felt rushed.

Anyway, if it's a nice day and you don't mind waiting for about 15 minutes outside, I highly recommend Nook, which is on 746 9th Avenue between 50th and 51st Street.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Butterscotch Chocolate Chip Blondies

I haven't baked in a while, so I decided to whip up some blondies this weekend. I got this recipe from one of my favorite websites, myrecipes.com, which includes recipes from one of my favorite cooking magazines, Cooking Light, as well as Southern Cooking...etc.

The blondies were super easy to make and an absolute hit at my office! I added chocolate chips into the original recipe because... what's a dessert without chocolate?!

Happy Baking!!!

Yield

24 servings (2 squares)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (about 9 ounces)
  • 2 1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 10 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup egg substitute (I actually just used eggs that came in a carton)
  • Cooking spray

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

Place butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Cook for 6 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Pour into a small bowl, and cool for 10 minutes. Combine butter and egg substitute, stirring with a whisk. Pour butter mixture over flour mixture; stir just until moistened. Add chocolate chips. Spoon batter into a 13 x 9-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray; smooth top with spatula. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Cut into 48 squares.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Tyrone Wells

Last week, Star and I went to go see Pat McGee at the Highline Ballroom. He was opening for Tyrone Wells, who I had never heard of before. Of course, we knew what to expect with Pat and I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed his anecdotes and solo performance, but the highlight of the evening was definitely the headliner! (love new music!)

I've been to Highline before but this was the first time they had put tables in the audience as opposed to just having standing room. It was definitely a different vibe and a lot more intimate. Star and I decided to grab a table with a $10 minimum per guest, and ended up sharing the table with a couple who was clearly on a date. Can we say...awkward? But once we had a drink in hand, it was smooth sailing from there!

Pat and Keaton Simons each played and then sang a couple songs together, as well as with Radioactive, the beatboxer. It was nearing 10pm and Star and I were both tired, but we agreed to at least stay to hear the opening act play a song or two. Well, we were definitely in for a surprise because when Tyrone came on, the energy in the room rose a couple levels and the performance was quite good! His sound is pop/rock and reminded me a lot of Chris Daughtry. Anyway, definitely check him out and let me know what you think!

Happy Listening!