Monday, February 21, 2011

food and more food

Week 7 of Project 365 was all about the food. I certainly didn't plan it to be that way, but between Valentine's Day and rainy, cold weather, the food-related pictures were the ones that came out on top.

Last Saturday's big outing was to Potrero Hill for brunch at Plow. It's a relatively new restaurant, and it's owned by our wedding florist and her husband. (She closed her adorable flower and gift shop in the Mission in 2009.) Plow is pretty popular—and small—so we had to wait 30-40 minutes for a table. We filled the time with a quick walk down the street to check out the little neighborhood and then a short wait outside the restaurant. For my brunch, I was tempted to just order the lemon ricotta pancakes, but since I went with the grilled cheese (with a couple kinds of cheese, plus apples), I was glad that Steve got the signature Plow breakfast with pancakes. It wasn't an especially fancy brunch, but the flavor combinations in the grilled cheese and the lemon ricotta pancakes were great. We probably won't be back too soon, but it's definitely worth another visit sometime.

43/365 plow

After Plow, Steve and I walked over to Big Daddy's Antiques to check out Tell Tale Preserve Company's "Trunk Show." They have a temporary coffee and pastry place in a storefront attached to a very cool antique store. Steve got some coffee, and I got a white chocolate-green tea-black sesame gun. I'm not someone who loves green tea in everything, but this was just too awesome and cute to pass up.

On Sunday, we both spent a lot of time in the kitchen, making things for Valentine's Day. I made an Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cake with cream cheese frosting (from Baked Explorations) for Steve's breakfast, and Steve prepped various components of our dessert for the next day. Despite all that, I found time to take a picture of my white chocolate gun—and my Valentine's Day flowers—with Steve's help.

44/365 shiny toy gun

For Valentine's Day on Monday, Steve made us a fancy dinner. We've been doing that instead of going out for the last 4 years or so, and last year's meal was actually what inspired the 52 Weeks of Food project. This year, he made Lobster Cappuccino from Eric Ripert's On the Line, Lobster "Macaroni and Cheese" from The French Laundry Cookbook, and Tiramisushi from Elizabeth Falkner's Demolition Desserts. Everything was very good, but the Tiramisushi picture stood out the most to me. I also liked the idea of ending the project with a dessert picture.

I'll leave it at that, since I'm planning to write a final post about 52 Weeks of Food and Valentine's Day soon.

45/365 valentine's day

The next day, Tuesday, was Steve's birthday. Instead of ordering a cake this year, I decided to make cupcakes and use the pirate decoration set that had caught my eye at Williams Sonoma and Sur la Table. So that afternoon, I made David Lebovitz's Guinness-Gingerbread Cupcakes from Ready for Dessert. Instead of the lime buttercream in the recipe, though, I made cream cheese frosting. It felt like a race against the clock to get them done and decorated in time to take a picture before it got darker (or rainier), but I did it. That evening, we had dinner at Contigo with Dan, Carmen, Rob and Traci; and then we came back and ate the pirate cupcakes. They turned out really well.

46/365 pirate cupcakes

When it came to Wednesday, I was at a loss for what to photograph after the excitement of the previous days. I finally got out one of my chocolates from Valentine's Day that afternoon, and I noticed that it was a pretty red color. I hadn't taken any stereotypical Valentine's pictures on Monday, so I guess I made up for it on Wednesday.

47/365 caramel heart

Thursday evening, we planned to have Dan and Carmen up to eat dinner with us: Maryland crab cakes, shipped to us from my sister and her husband. Steve and I decided to serve them how we did last year, with a citrus salad and some white wine. And for Carmen, I bought a couple sodas from the corner store, which I ended up photographing on our dining room table when I got home. The colors coordinated well with the grapefruit, blood orange, and mandarin orange in the salad, as well as the tulips in the background.

48/365 soda options

Another rainy day on Friday... Steve left me a note that morning, hinting that I should make some hot chocolate with the leftover mocha rum sauce from the tiramisushi. I did just that in the afternoon, finishing up the last of the biscotti (also from the tiramisushi) while I was at it. It was a pleasant break from my work, prepping for Sunday's classes.

49/365 rainy day leftovers

And so ends a very food-filled week. Hopefully, better weather this week will mean fewer pictures of food in my house and more pictures of interesting things elsewhere!

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