Food Adventures in Portland

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Breakfast at Isabel.  Boy, was their breakfast ever delicious and filling!  We held our bellies high as we walked out the door.

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Dinner at Jake’s Grill (Downtown Portland)

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We had the short ribs with creamy polenta and fried leeks.  Divine!  We also both had a french onion soup but it was devoured before we even remembered to take our camera out.  oops!

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Chocolate Molten Lava Cake and homemade ice cream for dessert!

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but that wasn’t all…I had the mini (so NOT mini!)  trio.  I was on a sugar high about 3 minutes after this shot.

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Nothing says comfort like a cup of hot chocolate, lemon macaron and their famous gibassier (a french pastry made from olive oil, candied orange peel, anise, and baker’s sugar to top it off).

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Catch up time with good friends at Pearl Bakery.  They make the best pastries.  mmm…did I mention their croissants are to die for as well?

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These two guys never stop laughing or cracking jokes.  😉

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Dinner at Bluehour (Pearl District).

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I loved everything about this restaurant.  It was beautiful, bright and the food was absolutely amazing!

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A little bubbly to celebrate our little getaway.

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Cauliflower and pesto cream gnocchi.  It literally melted in my mouth.  drooool…so good.

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Bittersweet chocolate panacotta.  loved it!

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We had to go to voodoo donuts before making our way back home.  I personally am not a fan of donuts.  I’ll eat them but I’m not crazy about them like how I am for chocolate. 😉  Apparently, there is usually a very long line for these donuts but since we came early, the line was pretty short.  It was pretty cool to see so many different flavours of donuts.  Some were just beyond comprehension…like the maple bacon donut.  I will try that one out next time when I’m feeling more adventurous. hehe.

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Hope you’re having a lovely start to your week!  Thanks for reading!  xoxo!

Mini Lemon Tea Cakes

DSC02129I’m a huge fan of anything lemony (is that a word?)  so when I came across this citrus delight while looking for a new recipe to add to my high tea mini delectables, I knew I had to try it out.  Here is the original recipe from the infamous Martha Stewart.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for muffin tin
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for muffin tin
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk or plain low-fat yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Zest of 1 lemon, finely grated, plus juice, plus 2 tablespoons more lemon juice for the glaze
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  1. STEP 1

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two mini muffin tins. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, vanilla, and zest and juice of 1 lemon. Set aside.

  2. STEP 2

    With an electric mixer, cream butter and granulated sugar until light. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. With mixer on low speed, add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk mixture.

  3. STEP 3

    Divide evenly among muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of a cake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 10 minutes in tin, then cool completely on a rack.

  4. STEP 4

    Set rack over wax or parchment paper. In a small bowl, stir confectioners’ sugar with remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice until smooth. Pour over cakes, spreading to edges with a small knife. Let set 30 minutes.

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Truffled Mac and Cheese

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One of my many favourite comfort foods that I crave as the weather gets colder – mac and cheese.  But not just any mac and cheese, TRUFFLED macaroni and cheese is the way my palate likes it.  I love anything homemade so it made total sense that my mac and cheese would be as well.  It’s a relatively simple recipe that I followed from Williams-Sonoma’s collection of recipes.  The only muscle work involved really is the cheese grating (which I don’t really mind when the aroma of truffle is in the air!)  Bon Appetite!

Ingredients:

  • Unsalted butter for baking dish, plus 4 Tbs. (1/2 stick)
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 lb. elbow macaroni
  • 2 tsp. truffle oil
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. sweet paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Gruyère cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded white cheddar cheese
  • 2 Tbs. minced fresh chives

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 375°F. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the macaroni and cook, stirring occasionally, until not quite al dente, about 2 minutes less than the package instructions. Drain and transfer to a large bowl. While the pasta is still warm, drizzle with the truffle oil and stir well.

Return the saucepan to medium-high heat and melt the 4 Tbs. butter. Add the flour, paprika and mustard and cook, stirring well, until no visible flour remains, 1 to 3 minutes. Whisk in the milk, half-and-half and a generous pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Simmer, whisking frequently to smooth out any lumps, for 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add a pinch of pepper and 1 cup each of the Gruyère and cheddar. Stir until smooth.

Pour the cheese sauce onto the macaroni, add the chives and stir well. Transfer to the prepared baking dish and top with the remaining cheeses. Bake until the top is lightly browned and the sauce is bubbly, 25 to 30 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Serves 6.

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