Friday, December 13, 2013

5 oz Grilled Cheese and Custard ice cream

Not very happy with my grilled Queso Quesadilla. Will try it again NEXT time.  Maybe...

Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Branzino or branzini - this is a Mediterranean fish that has good flavor, nice fish texture like a trout, and great for grilling or broiling.

Best to cut the back of the fish from the top of the head all the way down to the tail sliding your fish along the skeleton of the fish.  Open the fish like a book.  You can now remove the fish entrails and cut off the gills.

 Next, you slide the knife flat omg the main skeleton removing it from the flesh from the head to the tail on the other side of the fish bone to remove the entire fish skeleton.  Cut it off from the head and the tail to discard the fish skeleton.

Monday, December 9, 2013


My friends and I went to eat at Cognac East, the new restaurant addition from Cognac on west 55th street and Broadway.

Cognac is pretty little French Brasserie located on Lexington and 70th street.  We sat right at the table you see by the window in this photo.
The special that night was a seafood-chicken combination Paella which we ordered as a shared appetizer and another order of it as one of our friend's main dish.  If they still have it in the menu, please try it.  It's not French, it's the special for the day; but he does it well.
I ordered their Cognac chicken above.
The steak above was excellent said one of our friends.
I wish I had ordered the seared foie gras above. Our friend loved it. She had it as her main course.  I think when I go back (which I certainly will do, I would also make this as my main course).
Above is the pork chop
Don't miss the soufflé with pistachio creme anglais that you pour in the center.  First you open it up in the center with your spoon, and then you pour the sauce in.  I learned to eat it this way from Julia Child!

And we had a treat that evening, there were two men that came with a trombone and guitar to sing to us.  Their music style and voice was so 20s and 30s.  We all had a good time! Good food! Good atmosphere and great friends! A unique evening in NYC! It was a surprise. I hope they continue to have some live entertainment.

Cognac East
963 Lexington Ave, New York, NY


As a Foodie, I can't resist not to attend this particular class where I can learn the techniques from the Executive Chefs themselves and actually eat the dishes prepared during the class and paired with wines!

Degustibus is held at Macy's 8th floor kitchen area where they hold kitchen demonstrations.

Today, we had Florian V. Hugo, great great grandchild of Victor Hugo. He was also  chef at Alain Ducasse's restaurant in Monte Carlo and Paris.

Now, Chef Florian V. Hugo is partners and Chef at his  own restaurants Cognac on Broadway and West 55th St and at his new restaurant in the Upper  Eastside of New York City's Manhattan called Brasserie Cognac East.

He shares the techniques and recipes of the following dishes we at tonight's class at Degustibus.
Below is the amuse bouche - gougere fromage served with lobster soup in a small glass.

Above was the salmon we torched, served with puréed sauce with dill.
We learned the right technique to sear scallops served with chestnuts, mushrooms with port reduction sauce
This simple fillet mignon has a complex preparation and secret techniques that opened my eyes and learned new tips!
The Floating Island dessert was a new way of making making it. We learned new methods of preparation!

And you know what? I just been discovered where to go for good French food in the city!   His Brasserie is located on Lexington and 70th St in the Upper Eastside of New York City. 

Cognac East
963 Lexington Ave, New York, NY

Taverna in Athens

Located at the corner of Okeanidomi and Mokreondos Streets is a neat looking taverna where we ate on our first night. For the first time, I had Greek-style braised leg of lamb pictured below.
The fried potatoes served with it was very good as well.  In fact even the salad was flavorful - must be the homemade dressing.

We ordered cheese zakanacki.  That too was delicious.

A good Bahnmi (Vietnamese sandwich)


1 Asian sausage (preferably Vietnamese or Philippine longganisa available at Asian stores)
1 light crispy baguette (available at a Vietnamese bakery or some grocery stores)
2 TB liver pork pate 
1-2 slices of Nieman's ham (sodium nitrite free)
*1 slice Vietnamese cold cut (optional)
3 sprigs of cilantro
1/2 c of pickled carrots and daikon (available at Asian markets) or you can use butter pickles
2 thinly sliced lengthwise of cucumber
2 TB Mayonnaise
Siractcha sauce
*Jalapeño pepper slices (optional)

Lice your baguette in half. Hallow the bread to accommodate the fling.

Out mayonnaise on top half and the liver pate in the bottom half.

Layer it with the ham. The Vietnamese cold cut, the cooked sausage removed from the casing, pickled radish and carrots, jalapeño peppers (optional) and cilantro.

Squeeze some siractcha on top: