I made it home relatively early from work tonight and was actually looking forward to cooking dinner. I admit I like to cook as a release, it’s pretty relaxing to me.
I went grocery shopping a couple days ago and bought some fresh veggies. I typically like to pick up at least one item that I have never tried or at least typically do not cook. It’s sort of an experiment for me. So this week. I decided on brussel sprouts (yuck!). They actually looked really appetizing and I deep down wanted to challenge all of those who automatically announce brussel sprouts as their least favorite vegetable.
I cut off the tops and the outside leaves. My little guy apparently knows how messy I am and waits up me for the chance to catch anything that drops.
I then tossed the bruseel sprouts with extra virgin olive oil, pepper and 2 cloves garlic and roasted them in the oven on 400 for 35min, then took them out and sprinkled them with salt.
For the main course, I searched around my pantry and finally settled on the usual…pasta! My pantry is stocked with Barilla whole wheat pasta and this time I went with the linguine. I had some fresh mushrooms in the fridge that I sautéed in butter and herbs and then lowered the heat and threw in some red wine that I had left over from the previous night and some spinach. I tossed the pasta and mushrooms mix and added some freshly grated romano cheese. Finished in less than 15 min- so simple!
The brussel sprouts were surprising! Bold roasted flavor on the outside and almost nutty tasting on the inside. I ended up dipping them in my new find, Annie’s Goddess Dressing (all natural dressing that’s a creamy mix of lemon, parsely, chives and soy sauce).
For drinks I made my latest favorite- amaretto sours! I order this drink when I’m out and I recently started making it at home. For 2 glasses, I take 1 fresh lemon and juice it. I then add a generous pinch of sugar and splash of water. Next, I just mix my lemonade mix with amaretto, 1:1 ratio. Mmhmm!
I purchased a http://www.restaurant.com/ $25 gift certificate on sale for only $2 about half a year ago to Iron Bridge Wine Co, http://www.ironbridgewines.com/. I’ve been wanting to go ever since and finally was able to this last Friday night (only after asking my boyfriend daily for the last week)! I’m a big wine fan and really love the small plates that Iron Bridge offers. We tried to book a reservation last minute, but unfortunately the only space they had open was for 9:30pm. We decided to do a walk-in instead to try to get in sooner. We were told a 15-20 min wait, which ended up taking a little bit longer. During this time our hostess and wait staff was very hospitable checking on us and offering beverages.
When we finally were seated, I already had in mind what I wanted to order. It was Foie Gras night, but me being vegetarian and my boyfriend wanting nothing to do with duck liver kept us from ordering the special. I started off with “A nice Merlot” and he ordered a Pinot Grigio. We then decided to share the crispy calamari, coconut shrimp and portobello and carmelized shallot pizza. The calamari was sooo fresh tasting, not chewy at all and came with a nice sauce, spicy red curry aioli, which was a nice change of pace from the usual marinara.
The coconut shrimp were huge!! The 3 shrimp were plenty surprisingly for me and my boyfriend. I don’t think the picture does them justice.
And lastly the pizza. Ok, I have to admit I am not a pizza fan (gasp)- greasy cheese and white dough just isn’t my thing. But this pizza…it was fantastic! My boyfriend and I agreed that we will both be going back to get it again. The ingredients listed on the menu were red wine shallots, gruyere, baby arugula, balsamic reduction and truffle oil. Heaven.
I plan to give Iron Bridge another visit soon on a Thursday night for “No corkage Thursday”. They waive the corkage fee on your choice of a bottle of wine- great deal!
My name is Jess. I grew up in Maryland and went to college at University of Delaware. Since Delaware, I moved back to Maryland and am in the early stages of my advertising career.
Ever since I was little (going back to Elementary School), I have had an aversion to meat. Back then it was a basic belief that I should not eat animals. Despite the attempts by my mother to sneak chicken in my meals, I remain a vegetarian. You couldn’t call me a strict vegetarian because I do love seafood. So I’d say a seafoodatarian, if there is such a term. Growing up in Maryland with amazing steamed crabs is probably the culprit.
I try to cook healthy and balanced meals. My cooking has a bit of Italian influence from my family. Even though Italian food is my comfort, I do love and will try just about anything meatless. And I have a huge sore spot for sweets, as you’ll soon learn.
Well…I’m very motivated to start blogging at least on a weekly basis. I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts as well!