Mr. Bartley’s Burger Cottage

boston, savory

A great burger place in Harvard Square. Don’t try going on the weekends though – the lines are crazy!

Mr. Bartley's Burger CottageBurgers

Awesome sweet potato fries and a great burger (Boursin cheese and bacon, yes please)

Mr. Bartley’s Burger Cottage: 1246 Massachusetts Ave

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Egg-In-A-Hole from Santiago, Chile!

south america, sweet

I will be down in Santiago, Chile for five months and plan to blog about all my interesting food experiences.  Well today I had my first.  After huffing our way to the top of San Cristobal Hill we noticed everyone sipping and eating these…

We had NO IDEA what it was and to be honest it looked pretty gross and 0% refreshing.  But the same people that were sweating their way up the hill with us seemed to be enjoying them to we took a risk.  Turns out, DELICIOUS!

It was called “Rico Mote con Huesillos” and it was essentially peaches in a sweet tea with dried husked wheat at the bottom.  We have since found out this is national drink of Chile, and is especially popular in the summer time (now).  If you ever travel to Chile I highly recommend you try this national treasure.

Summer Borscht (and it’s barely Spring)

savory

Summer Borscht

A meal that reminds you that warm weather will eventually come again (and I just bought a huge bunch of fresh dill)

Ina Garten’s Summer Borscht  (2006, Barefoot at Home)

Ingredients

  • 5 medium fresh beets (about 2 pounds without tops)
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • 16 ounces sour cream, plus extra for serving
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Champagne vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups medium-diced English cucumber, seeds removed
  • 1/2 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, plus extra for serving

Directions

Place the beets in a large pot of boiling salted water and cook uncovered until the beets are tender, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove the beets to a bowl with a slotted spoon and set aside to cool. Strain the cooking liquid through a fine sieve and also set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together 1 1/2 cups of the beet cooking liquid, the chicken stock, sour cream, yogurt, sugar, lemon juice, vinegar, 1 tablespoon salt, and the pepper. Peel the cooled beets with a small paring knife or rub the skins off with your hands. Cut the beets in small to medium dice. Add the beets, cucumber, scallions, and dill to the soup. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight. Season, to taste, and serve cold with a dollop of sour cream and an extra sprig of fresh dill.

How do you Roll? – San Antonio, TX

san antonio, savory

Imagine a sushi place set up like a Subway or Chipotle restaurant, build your own sushi like how you would a sandwich or a burrito. Well, this place exists, and it’s called How do you Roll? Genius idea, why didn’t I think of it!?! I’m prediciting this chain will start expanding all over the US and soon hopefully all over the world. Also, you can call your order in so you don’t have to wait in line.

I was treated to a wonderful dinner with a friend whose cousin owns the restaurant. High Roller status…get it??? Well, as a matter of fact they do have these “High Roller” cards where you can top up and accrue points kind of like a Starbucks gold member card.

So I built my own sushi…which um I’m not sure if that was a good idea since I piled on all the fixings I love. Extra crab meat, extra spicy mayo, extra tempura flakes…ya get?!

 

 

 

Friend's customized sushi

La Tuna Grill – San Antonio, TX

san antonio, savory

I just discovered a great emerging district in San Antonio called Southtown,which is indeterminately defined around south of the downtown area.  This district is known for hosting “First Friday” which is an art walk that happens on the…well you guessed it…First Friday of each month. The walk attracts a yuppie, artsy, bohemian, carefree type crowd who are both admirers and sellers of local art.

A friend had recommended La Tuna Grill for their quality food/ingredients and atmosphere.  It’s mainly outdoor seating, dog friendly, which makes for a great place to come to when the weather is nice.

I ordered the chicken fried steak (you can never go wrong) while my friends enjoyed the fish tacos and Torta Milanesa sandwich.

BOHEMIAN : behind the butcher shop

new york

Recently, I dined at Bohemian, the small and secretive Japanese restaurant located behind the butcher shop on Great Jones Street.  In order to go, one must contact them to inquire about dining and may or may not get an invitation to make a reservation with the restaurant’s unlisted phone number in return.

The interior is small, dimly lit and almost feels like you are seated in a friend’s living room complete with couches.  My meal ranged from oysters, beef sashimi to two different dishes with uni. The menu also offers dishes such as foie gras soba, beef sliders and vegetable fondue.  I cannot wait to go back and highly recommend trying to get an invitation to experience behind the butcher shop.

My favorite dish was the uni rice bowl

We also ordered the pan roasted branzini which was served with a brussel sprouts, zucchini, onions and sea salt.  I have never had a fish eyeball and my friend insisted that I tried this one.

Bohemian

57 Great Jones Street, NYC (www.playearth.jp)

Torchy’s Tacos – Houston, TX

houston, savory

I’m so glad they decided to finally open up a place in Houston!!!!! Originating from Austin, TX…Torchy’s started out as a food truck, slowly hooking fellow Austinites then expanding city-wide… and now state-wide!  (read the story of Torchy’s Taco’s here) When I think of Austin, I think of Torchy’s. I dream of Torchy’s.

We ordered pretty much everything on the menu!! My favorite is the Trailer  Park: Fried Chicken, green chilies, lettuce, pico de gallo and cheese on a flour tortilla. I always get it “trashy” which replaces the lettuce with queso. Served with a Poblano Sauce. Que delicioso!

The food baby that ensued in my stomach after consumption.

 

Trailer Park and Fried Avocado Taco

Green Chile Pork Taco

The Democrat Taco

Mi Tierra Restaurant & Bakery – San Antonio, TX

san antonio, savory, sweet
The great thing about living in San Antonio is the huge Mexican influence, after all Texas used to be a part of Mexcio right? Small Battle of the Alamo changed that and other things, but at least San Antonio was able to keep the Mexican culture alive.
 
 
My local native friend showed me the way of the land and took me to Mi Tierra, a restaurant y panaderia located in El Mercado – a plaza filled with entertainment like Mariachi Bands, Salsa dancing, shops where you can find Mexican souvenirs, and of course delicous food/drinks.
 
 
We started out with an order of Margaritas at the Mariachi Bar (which is located inside the restaurant of Mi Tierra)….Word of warning: just be prepared to be overwhelmed by color at this place. There’s a shrine to family and friends, lots of Catholic influence, a bakery filled with dulces, hanging pinatas and crazy lights.  I would normally complain about being in such an ornate, overwheming color boosting, loud, tacky decorations kind of place, but NO…It’s culture, I have to respect culture… I can feel like I’m in Mexico without having to be in Mexico. You get?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Our first round of Margaritas weren’t as large as the couples’ sitting next to us, so we HAD to get the one’s in a bigger glass. Why? Was this necessary? Yes…Yes it was, for obvious reasons – the sake of deliciousness.
 
 
I conclude without having snapped a photo of the delicious food we ordered because um, I ate it. And I can’t come up with a better answer other than – did you see the size of our margaritas?!
 
 

Market Square

Mi Tierra: Market Square – San Antonio, TX