Can a picky eater overcome a lifelong aversion to "branching out"?

Sunday, April 24, 2011

A Food Experience

So we went home this weekend for a visit.  Beyond it being awesomely fun to get to see family and friends, we had some amazing food!!!  SO good!!!

We went to the mother-in-law's house to visit and while we were there I made a chicken for dinner.  It was delicious!  It was the best I have done so far.  I am definitely getting the hang of it.  And I love how easy it is!  It is definitely my new go-to dish to make for people!

That night, we went out to dinner at Elements, a local tapas restaurant.  It is one of my favorite restaurants.  It is amazing.  About every other week or so, I have dreams about eating there.  And they did not disappoint!!  We started with our favorite, their house dates:

Dates, stuffed with chorizo and wrapped in bacon.  It is the most delicious thing I have ever eaten.  My biggest complaint?  The amount the give.  It never splits evenly and I have totally gotten in fights over who gets the last date.  Eventually it was ended amicably by us getting a second order thus saving my marriage and several friendships....But even would have been worth it.  These are amazing.

I wanted to try something different too, so I ordered the ceviche:

It was bay scallops and yellow tail with scallions.  It was really good!!  I was surprised.  As I have mentioned, I am not a huge fish person.  However, I have wanted to try ceviche for a long time and I totally trust the chef at Elements so I was willing to go for it.  There was a hint of something gritty in it which was off putting.  Any grittiness in a seafood dish automatically makes me feel like there is sand in my food.  But I liked it!  The ceviche style made it an easier texture for me to handle. Also, because it was chopped into small pieces, everything blended well and there wasn't an overpowering fishiness to it.

Next came the Jamon Iberico:

36 month aged acorn fed black-hoofed spanish ham.  It was fantastic!  It has a wonderful creaminess to it.  And you could taste the acorn.  There was a really great nuttiness.  And oddly, there was a hint of chocolate to it.  I've never understood what people meant when they would describe things as having "undertones of chocolate". I never got that and it always sounded a bit pretentious, but this totally had a chocolate taste to it!  It was so good.....

Next, Asparagus Romesco!!

Grilled asparagus with romesco sauce and a balsalmic reduction.  I usually don't much enjoy tomato based sauces but this was fantastic.  Of course I already love grilled asparagus so that was the easy part!  The sauce was great though.  It had really great flavors and spices and had a nice creaminess and sweetness to it.  Again, I freaking love Elements and I can't wait until our next chance to eat there.

The next day I got to eat at my favorite place!!! My mom's!!  We had Easter brunch with my parents.  My mom made a really delicious maple-y, nutty coffee cake, strawberries, roasted asparagus and lamb shanks.  The lamb shanks were fall-off-the-bone tender.  The juice was amazing when drizzled over the asparagus. The strawberries were just on the un-ripe side (the way I love them!!!) but they still had a really good flavor to them.  And I have had the coffee cake before, but I have always been so caught up in the mindset that I don't like coffee cake and I don't like nuts and I don't like the textures and blah blah blah that I never actually tasted it.  It is really good!!  I can't believe I have eaten something so many times and never actually managed to taste it before!  Once again, it just makes me so happy I took this step because I have been missing out on so much.

Finally, we had lunch before taking off back out of town.  We decided to go to Taqueria El Gallo, a tiny mexican place sandwiched between a Minute Market and a Laundromat.  When my husband and I first got together we lived in a tiny studio apartment about a block and a half from the restaurant.  I went through a phase where I ate their tacos twice a day, every day for a couple of weeks.  And it is understandable!  Look at them!!

So good.  Squeeze some limes on there, drizzle them with sour cream and lay one of the spicy carrots on top.  Good lord that is delicious food!  The husband got his usual vegetarian quesadilla.

Creamy, melt-y, salty, onion-y deliciousness all piled onto one paper plate  Such a perfect way to end our visit home.  Satisfied and happy, but already looking forward to the next time.

1 comment:

  1. This post reminds me of a travel show I saw that talked about how the French will take two hours to eat their dinner. Because they taste and talk and analyze the complex flavours. It was then that I decided that I want to eat at least once like the French! Not like the poor, large, farm family from which I came where you eat as fast as you can or your S.O.L. LOL! Anyway, thanks for giving me a French-flavoured article. It was as close to French eating as I'll get to most of the foods you mentioned. *smile*

    Have I mentioned lately how proud of you I am?! Well if not... I'M PROud OF YOU1!!