Posted tagged ‘organic’

Some random gastronomical musings

March 6, 2011
  • The Flour Bakery + Cafe’s cookbook rocks. I’ve never actually made anything from the book (nor do I own it), but I’ve sampled two desserts from it. One was a chocolate cupcake with white butter frosting, and the other was a lemon square. A friend of ours brought over some of the lemon squares the other night, and I can’t stop thinking about how good they are.

The remaining lemon squares

  • Wegmans rocks. You’ve all heard of this amazing grocery store right? Each year, the Rochester, NY-based supermarket makes Fortune magazine’s list of best places to work. Not to mention the store has an excellent selection of produce, baked goods, meat, and much more. Well this past week, when I was in Syracuse for some wedding planning, my mom made veal and spaghetti with Wegmans’ vodka sauce.

The sauce is unbelievably tasty. Its ingredients include diced tomatoes, tomato puree, diced onions, cream, olive oil, vodka, Romano cheese, roasted garlic, and basil. She mixed the sauce with cooked mushrooms, put the mixture atop spaghetti, and served it with Wegmans-brand veal.

My mom bought some of the Wegmans-brand veal for me to bring back to Boston.

I love how the veal is nice and skinny. My mom basically dipped the veal pieces into an egg and flour mixture; then covered them with breadcrumbs. She cooked the veal in some olive oil for a couple of minutes, put mozzarella on top of the veal pieces, and microwaved them for a minute. So the cheese was nice and melted atop the crispy veal. Oh my gosh I was in heaven eating this meal. It was of restaurant quality (a good restaurant, that is)!

I stopped by the local wine store, looking for a decent boxed wine. As I was reading the back of this one, a lady giving out samples of another wine told me a couple of customers had just recommended this one. So I went with it. It was pretty reasonably priced ($15 for 1.5 liters, which is two bottles-worth), and it is organic/contains no sulfites. I’m no oenophile; I just like a smooth, decent-tasting wine. Well, this one fits the bill. I mean, it’s a little spicier than the wines I’m used to, but by no means is that a negative thing. I would surely purchase this brand of wine again.

Wedding dress shopping

February 20, 2011

My mom and I showed up to my dress fitting 20 minutes late. I hadn’t anticipated it would take so long to get there (Note to self: Boston-area strip malls are a hot destination on Saturday afternoons). We walked into David’s Bridal only to find ourselves surrounded by dozens of frenzied engaged women, family members and friends.

Half of them had dresses on while the other half scoured the racks, admired the soon-to-be brides, and asked questions of the employees. A check-in table was set up at the door, yet no one was there to greet us. After a few minutes I was very worried our appointment had been canceled as a result of our tardiness.

But fortunately, a minute later, Roseanne came over. I apologized profusely for being late, and she insisted it wasn’t a problem. We moved over to the dressing area; she asked me to look through a book of dresses and pick out the ones I liked. I was a little dismayed she declined to look at my list of product ID numbers. I had compiled it after picking out my favorite dresses on the David’s Bridal website.

Roseanne ended up bringing three strapless dresses over. She helped me put each one on, and led me out to the mirrored area where my sister and mom were waiting. The first dress wasn’t bad, and I especially liked how the back looked, with its laced-up closing. But when I tried on the second dress I realized how much I preferred a dress with a sweetheart bodice (an example of a sweetheart bodice).

I liked how both dresses had a lot of shape on the bottom, but I didn’t like how the second one made my midsection look a lot bigger than it is. After realizing the third dress wasn’t my size, Roseanne had me pick out a few more dresses from the racks. She ended up choosing one for me. It was a new arrival with a more “earthy” or “organic” feel than the other dresses. I tried it on. The top was the perfect shape, and the bottom had ample body. I wasn’t sure if I’d like the ruffles on the bottom, but once the dress was on I fell in love with them.

In addition to having the perfect shape, it had some nice touches (including a slightly off-white color, cottony material as opposed to a satiny material, a flower set toward one side of the waist, and two ribbons that tie in back). The dress perfectly matched the flower in my hair (which I ended up getting). The only issue was the dress was a little wrinkled (the fabric slightly lends itself to wrinkles).

Roseanne and her coworkers assured us that the dress wouldn’t be wrinkled on the big day. They said it would be steamed before wear, and that one day of wear would not result in wrinkles. I believed them. My mom, however, was a bit skeptical, and she didn’t think the dress was formal enough (and wished it was pure white). My sister, Roseanne, and I loved it, however, and I got lots of compliments from others in the store.

Roseanne and I went back to the rack– this time with my sister and mom, and we picked out a few more dresses. None of them pleased me as much as the “organic” dress. I tried to convince myself I liked a dressier sequined satin dress more, but then I realized I was doing that just to satisfy my mom. I tried on my top two dresses again. When I put on the one my mom didn’t like as much, and walked into the mirrored area, my sister started crying. I asked her why, and she said it was because I looked so good in the dress.

She said it was perfect for me. I ended up getting that one (actually– my sister bought it along with a bra, petticoat and veil for my wedding present), and I think my mom is warming up to it. So that was clearly a successful dress shopping outing. Next I need to get shoes, and decide on bridesmaid dresses (I’m thinking a green color).

Photo credit: www.flickr.com/photos/psit/5379626811

Story I wrote about new raw vegan restaurant in Newton

September 8, 2009

rawA Newton husband and wife have started a restaurant in Newton Corner that just serves raw, organic and vegan foods. It is several doors down from Prana Power Yoga, a yoga studio they have owned the last seven years.

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