ANTONELLI’s Cheese Shop

May 9, 2013
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I had to go back to Antonelli’s. Ever since I finished off the last crumb of Baley Hazen blue cheese, I’ve been hungry for more. I’ve been reading about the French diet recently and I wanted to see how I felt if I followed it for a while. Out of 192 countries in the world, France is second to last, number 191, in amount of heart disease. Only Kiribati has a better rate, where ever that is. The United States is 135 and has a heart disease death rate of  80 out of every 100,000 deaths. France has 29 out of every 100,000 deaths attributable to heart disease and the average citizen eats 80 pounds of cheese a year! So, somewhere, there is a link between cheese and a healthy diet. I want to get to the bottom of this!

A very usual breakfast is a French baguette, thinly sliced, toasted and spread with some jam or honey. I purchased my baguette from the 43rd Street bakery there in Hyde Park close to Antonelli’s. My cheese monger, Kelly,  from my last visit, helped me find a few new things. I purchased a Tupelo honey from Savannah Bee Company in one of my favorite Southern towns. For jam, I was intrigued by a carrot jam from in Austin (Kelly let me taste it first). Since I’m nervous about the whole bread and jam for breakfast idea, I thought if I could throw in a vegetable at the same time, maybe I could go all morning without getting hungry. Keeping with the French tradition, I bought a red wine, described on the website as

“The Clos Roche Blanche “Cuvée Pif” (Touraine, France) 2011 $17 [Very Good] is a very genial and well made natural wine.  Dark purple in color, the nose is full of chalky/stony notes, dried leaves, substantial black raspberry and mulberry fruit, dollops of mint and black pepper, and a slight whiff of fingernail polish.  Medium bodied, with average acidity, the wine is full in the mouth with tannin that is mainly hidden.  There is a bit of grit, however.  The flavors of chalky stones, ripe and round dark raspberry fruit, herbs, and dried leaves have good intensity and an appealing geniality.  The finish is very good, of a piece with the flavors, and slightly gritty.  This wine is a mixture of Cabernet Franc and Malbec. January 2013.

It sounded like it would go well with cheese and nuts. Speaking of nuts, Antonelli’s has a big glass dispenser full of Marcona Almonds, so I got some to go with the cheese.


CHAGO’S Authentic Carribean Cuisine

May 9, 2013
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7301 N Lamar Blvd.
Austin, Texas 78752
(512) 275-6013

Today I had the Pollo Fricase with arroz blanco y salada. Next time, I plan to get the paella. Clean and neat and the owner is the chef. He will come out and talk to you about your selection. On North Lamar between Research and Airport.


California Pizza Kitchen

May 5, 2013
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California Pizza Kitchen Moroccan Salad

Moroccan Spiced Chicken Salad on CPK website

In the world of restaurant salads, California Pizza Kitchen is a bonanza! This is not a typical pizza

How my Moroccan salad really looked on arrival.

How my Moroccan salad really looked on arrival

restaurant like the huts and inns of my youth.CPK feels like a slightly upscale restaurant with both booths and tables and a full bar. The one my friend and I visited is next to Macy’s at the Domain. Two sizes of salads are available for each salad and the “half” salad size is plenty for one person. The wine glasses are on the table when you are seated and drink orders are taken right away. The menu includes  wonderful sounding pizzas, sandwiches and pastas but of course, we were there for the salads.

My choice was the Moroccan Spiced Chicken and my friend had the California Chopped. The Moroccan did not look at all like the picture below when it was served to me but all the ingredients were there. The chicken was buried in the romaine leaves but it was fun finding all the hidden gems underneath. “One of a kind, with roasted butternut squash, dates, avocado, toasted almonds, beets, chopped egg and cranberries. Tossed with housemade Champagne vinaigrette. GF” is the description on the menu and that doesn’t do it justice. The almonds are Spanish Marcona Almonds and the cranberries are dried cranberries. The fig and the roasted squash are two things you don’t usually see on salads and the champagne vinaigrette tasted terrific.

I can’t say much about the salad my friend had except that she ate 100% of it. The applewood smoked bacon looked real good. She could have

gotten the optional beets on it but declined.  This place is going to require more research. I’m already planning my next visit here.

California Cobb Salad

California Cobb

A topnotch site

A topnotch site

Simply Cooking

Life is difficult. But cooking is easy!