Archive | July, 2011

Homemade Bangers and Mash

28 Jul

We went to McGreevy’s for his birthday and what does he want the following week? Bangers and mash…Thankfully, there is an Irish butcher shop next to where I get my nails done! Two birds, one stone. Purchased some fresh Irish bangers (aka sausage) from an Irishman rocking a fedora (all the guys wear them there).

It was practically 90 degrees every day last week so I opted for frozen steam and mash potatoes.  I am a potato purist so I got the plain kind.  Quick and easy here’s what you do!

4 large Irish bangers

1 bag of steam and mash potatoes

Milk (I used skim. Nothing says “I’m being healthy” like skim milk with butter and mashed potatoes)

Extra virgin olive oil

salt and pepper

butter (I don’t specify an amount because everyone is different..and some people are like Paula Deen and use butter like water)

Cook the potatoes according to the directions on the bag. Heat a skillet and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and a tablespoon of butter. Place bangers in pan. Listen for the sizzle. Don’t turn it up too high or they’ll just burn on the outside. Total cook time for the bangers was about 15 – 20 minutes because I like them super crispy. Turn the bangers over and cook the other side. Once they’re brown on both sides you could cut them in half and finish cooking them cut side down.

Mash the potatoes with a splash of milk and season to your liking with salt and pepper. I held back from making them loaded mashed potatoes and didn’t add cheese, sour cream and crumbled bacon…it’s a delicious idea though!

Serve hot and c’est si bon!!

Buffalo Chicken Dip

26 Jul

I don’t remember the first time I had buffalo chicken dip. I think it may have been 2009, no joke. Apparently, I was missing out until then!  I’ve had it fried in wontons, totally delicious, or served with pita chips, tortilla chips or carrots and celery (if you’re feeling healthy). Below is a quick recipe I made at home. My lovely fella acted as a guinea pig liked it so I hope you do too!

I made a small batch…

2 cooked chicken breasts, diced or shredded depending on your preference of chicken size.  It was suggested I try using rotisserie chicken…I didn’t but it sounds like a good idea. I’ve also tried chicken in a can, stored in water. Drain it and use!

1/2 a block of softened cream cheese. I went the “healthy” route and used Neufchâtel cheese

1/3 cup of bleu cheese dressing or Ranch dressing

Salt and Pepper

1/3 to 1/2 cup of buffalo sauce. I used Frank’s Buffalo sauce because I didn’t feel like making my own (very simple by the way…check out my previous post about how to make it. Butter, lemon and hot sauce, can’t go wrong!)

Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan or microwave it in a microwave-safe dish until soft.

Stir and serve hot with chips of your choice (pita, bagel, tortilla).

C’est si Yum!

Review – McGreevy’s

22 Jul

Took the fella out for his birthday this weekend. Decided to keep it casual, so we checked out McGreevy’s on Boylston St. in Boston. We’d ventured over once before but it was before a concert and dinner was not the focus.

Going to go ahead and say it gets an A – . It was a hot Saturday afternoon (not nearly as hot as it is today…predicted 108 heat index. Is this Boston or the Sahara?) and we grabbed a seat in the window.

Appetizers –

We had the pretzels…mustard, cheese and a third dip we couldn’t identify but it was good! The only wish was that we had more than three pretzels to dip in!

I ordered the poutine fries. I am a fan of fries and gravy with cheese on them. SO good. They also paired well with the dips from the pretzels.

Service was great. We had a nice server, who was attentive enough when the drinks were low but not one of those obnoxious servers who bother you every five minutes.

Dinner –

We opted to try entrees.

Birthday boy got Bangers and Mash, which were delicious (yes I got to try some)

I got the mac n’ cheese. This is the only minus. It does tell you that there is cauliflower in the dish BUT it’s not really cooked cauliflower. It didn’t seem to fit textually with the orecchiette.

There are a number of other items on the menu that we will definitely be back to try. It was the perfect place for a nice birthday dinner and drinks outing!

C’est si Yum!

And now, a Sangria Moment

6 Jul

Nothing says Summer to me like Sangria.  Red or white, it’s all delicious!

Best Sangria –
Legal Harborside – The white sangria is A-MA-ZING. Pair it with some crispy calamari or their hummus with flatbread, with a view of the water of course, and you have a great Happy Hour.

Port 305 – Red sangria. Delicious. Their hummus is also delicious and served with toasty bread.

Ashmont Grill Dorchester – The white pear sangria is so refreshing and pairs nicely with their cheese plate! Be careful though, it gets super hot in the bar/restaurant area!

The Fours Quincy – Ok I wouldn’t pair the red sangria with their buffalo chicken nachos, but I definitely don’t discourage them together!!

Cheesecake Factory Braintree– White sangria on the patio with some of their small plates. Makes you forget you’re at the mall!

The Banshee Pub – Pretty sure I’ve talked about their potato skins before but their red sangria is refreshing and perfect with anything on the menu.

The Ledge Dorchester – Red sangria! Their back patio is amazing too!

 

Not so great Sangria…

Siros – The fried clams are delicious here. There was a DJ named DJ Skip, who danced all over the restaurant to oldies and brought back up oxford shirts made for a great alternative to the fist bumping crowd on a Friday night. The sangria was not good. It tasted like red wine and cough syrup had a chilled non-fruitful baby.

Tastings Wine Bar & Bistro Foxboro – Not great at all.  It tasted like watered down fruit punch with a cough syrup after taste.  I do recommend the calamari and of course, the cheese plate!

Who has the best sangria in your area??

C’est si Yum!

Restaurant Review – Great Chow’s Not a Great Wow

5 Jul

I love sushi. I still stand by the best sushi I’ve ever had being in NOLA, Rock N’ Sake in the Warehouse District, Sake Cafe Uptown or Mikimoto…mmm noodle salad. I’ve ordered sushi at the so-called best sushi place around, Fuji 1546 in Quincy and it’s pretty good but it doesn’t have nearly as many fun rolls as I’d expect and their “specials” have been the same for about a year.

I tried Great Chow in Quincy. Ordered it to go to bring to my guy (who would have known there are part Irish guys in the North East who love sushi and the South…maybe I found the only one 🙂 )

Called ahead, ordered salmon nigiri (or sushi over rice), spicy tuna roll, Philadelphia roll and a Crunch roll (shrimp tempura, crab, avocado with eel sauce on top. I also got crab rangoons (the fella’s fav) and a spring roll.

The good parts…the salmon nigiri was good. They didn’t have wasabi on the rice but it tasted really fresh. The bf didn’t stop eating the rangoons so I think that means they were good.

The bad…the spicy tuna roll wasn’t rolled very well and wasn’t really filled. It was more of a rice/seaweed roll with some spicy tuna in it and the spring roll I ordered was dripping with grease. It was awful. I couldn’t even eat it all, I threw it away.

The other parts were pretty normal, nothing great and it wasn’t terrible.
Overall, not a great experience. I’d say a 4 out of 10.