Thursday, July 7, 2011

Summer Eats, Farmer's Market, BBC Channel

Central Oregon summertime and it is fucking hot.  Our new dog is getting sick because of the heat, and I smell regardless of how much I shower...type of heat.  The good news is the abundance, sheer magnitude of beautiful ingredients on every shelf in every market.  It has been one month since the start of the Bend weekly farmer's market and its incredible to watch something sprout so quickly.  One month ago there were a handful of local vendors selling a handful of items...just yesterday I could hardly get to our house because of the enormity of people wanting to get fresh, locally produced goods.  One of my new favorites that I've been toying with is a type of Chinese broccoli called Gai Lan.  Saute this up with some summer squash and asparagus with garlic, sesame seeds, soy sauce and sesame oil and you have yourself a meal if you top it on a bed of rice.  Add some curry glazed salmon or pan fried whitefish of your choice for those looking for some added proteins.  

Another one of my favorites for summer are grilled pizzas.  Both simple and really fun to make, especially if you make your dough, utilizing the fresh seasonal veggies and cheeses its quick to make and super delicious.  Not to mention pretty light on a hot afternoon and goes great with some tasty IPA or summer draft.  We are currently obsessed with Boneyard Beers' RPM IPA for those in Bend, and for those outside try some Full Sail or Lagunitas - both very tasty.  For the summer brews I have always stuck with Blue Moon and Sam Adams Summer.  Again, for veggie lovers who also love eating animals, add some pancetta or bacon for zee pizzas.  

Gordon Ramsay.  Because of our recent upgrade on our Netflix/Comcast accounts, and because of our new pup I don't sleep past 6 in the morning out here anymore.  Perfect really because now I watch all of the Ramsay shows they air in the UK.  I'm sure you've heard of Kitchen Nightmares and the F Word but its fun to watch because its Chef Ramsay being a total asshole.  For those working in the restaurant business I have no idea why you would never let this guy help you out...he's genius.  And I personally think its funny because these big name chefs all hate vegetarians yet I still adore them.  I don't get it.  

Happy summer! Eat yo veggies while they're grown near where you live.  They taste better, and its better for you.  Do it, I dare you.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Sports Bar Super Bowl Shift

The idea of having hundreds of drunk people showing up in the same place at the same time in a restaurant is a terrible idea.  This past sunday was the almighty for football fanatics and, disregarding the ridiculously warm temps for February in Central Oregon and the chances to have an awesome cookout with friends and family, people came in masses to my place of work only to shove their fat faces full of fried food plates.  Sure, good for business, we all get to work another day, but why on earth choose french fries, potato skins, fish tacos, mozzarella sticks, fried mushrooms, 1/2 pound burgers with fries on them and wings, on top of all the heavy beers?  Because no one says it's not okay, oh, and broccoli doesn't taste nearly as good, obviously.

On another note I've been turned on to Current TV, a channel that shows some really great stuff, some not so much.  One show however is great and I think everyone should watch it if you want to learn more about where your food comes from, specifically meat. It's called Kill It, Cook It, Eat It, and it's great.  Go to the farm, pick out your prey, and do what the title says.  Kill it, cook it, and eat it!  Ranging from hamburgers to kebabs the show goes through the entire process of what it takes to make a living thing turn into a patty on a bun or a hunk o' meat on a stick.  For those that are queasy, and I know who you are because I only have two people interested in reading this thing anyways, this show is not for you.  But I think it should be.  Educate yourselves, especially when it's about things going into your mouth.  : )

Friday, January 21, 2011

The New Beginning

So I work in the restaurant business.  I cook in downtown Bend, Oregon, home of bicycle enthusiasts, boarders from California, outcasts from small outposts throughout the United States, and luckily enough, people who care about local artists, artisans, business, and food.  I moved here from the little known town of Haverhill, Massachusetts, on account of my neverending quest for the chance to feel free.  Drawing much inspiration from my being born in Oregon but never experiencing it, the decision was made to move to the place I was born in hopes of finding myself. 
So here I am after two short years of being on my own and I am almost positive that I've never been happier.  Things are different here.  Smaller and larger at the same time. You can smell happiness, people are nice, they give you the time of day then ask you to have a local brew with them, maybe watch the Ducks or the Trailblazers while indulging.  Needless to say, I feel lucky.  Things could have turned to shit when we moved out here but instead, we're doing just fine.  Kristen, my girlfriend, is working on her opticians license while I humbly work the busy lines of cookdom.  Working the hot side of a sports bar in a state that has no sports...thank god Bend is a melting pot.  I wear my Celtics, Red Sox, Patriots gear as much as I can, just to rub it in...and if you were wondering, New York sports teams can jump off the nearest bridge. 
I wanted to write this blog to share my life as someone who loves food in all its glory.  The simpleness of a meal as it comes to the table of hungry bellies at home or as it goes out the window of a high-end restaurant.  We all love food, one way or another.  Mainly for survival, most recently for indulgence.  Whatever the reasoning be, it starts from the bottom and works its way up.  This blog is about my way back from being spoiled, to being appreciative.  No better place to start than here.