Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Meal Recaps: The Past Few Weeks

It's a busy week, so apparently I'm kind of ditching my daily format. So no scrambling around my magazines and books and websites for a Quotable Tuesday quote this morning. Instead, some housekeeping. I've done a lot of eating over the past few weeks and it's time to report back.

In chronological order:

The Modern: As previously mentioned, about a week and a half ago, I went to New York with Missy and Sarah and Gilly as a semi-bachelorette celebration for Missy (sans veil or candy necklaces). Friday we went shopping and on Friday night we had dinner at The Modern, the restaurant at the MOMA.

The MOMA is one of my favorite museums ever, and I'd heard great things about The Modern. It did not disappoint. The space is open and busy but cool and if we'd been eating before sunset we'd have had an amazing view of the sculpture garden, as we sat next to a wall of glass (our reservation was at 9:30 - that's what happens when you make plans the week of).

The service was impeccable - attentive but not annoying - and the food was pretty fantastic. A few highlights:

- My pre-dinner cocktail, the Modern Martini, was a combination of cilantro-infused Tanqueray and fresh lime juice. Crazy intense and certainly only for people who already love cilantro. But refreshing, too.

- Amazing gifts from the chef, including tiny blue cheese purses and smoked salmon and caviar bites, among other things. I can't say no to an amuse-gueule.

- I loved my first course, which was a surprisingly rich sweet pea soup with a parmesan tuile and barley that added interesting texture.

- So much foie gras. Sarah ordered a foie first course and I had the foie gras and squab "croustillant" as my entree. It was so delicious, so rich, so savory...and almost too much. I could barely choke it all down.

- A thousand desserts, including little cookies and candies and something off the menu itself. I was trying to find something light, so I opted for maple ice cream with apple, pear and quince marmalade. It was not so light, but it was fantastic.

- A little citrusy breakfast bread, given by the hostess as a gift upon leaving. So thoughtful, right?

So that was The Modern. The next morning, I got up early and took a train back home, then went to my parents' house for my grandmother's 90th birthday party. That was a bit of a shift in gears - if dinner Friday night was fresh and modern, dinner Saturday was as traditional a family dinner as possible. Stuffed mushroom caps and cheese and crackers, grilled tenderloin with bearnaise, Julia Child scalloped potatoes with onion confit, a baked creamy spinach concoction and yellow cake with chocolate icing for dessert. I made the potatoes and mushrooms and spinach - all successfully, fortunately. The mushrooms and potatoes I could pretty much do in my sleep, and I'd made the onion confit a couple of days ahead of time, but the spinach I sort of made up as I went along. Fortunately, it didn't turn out either dry or cold or overly soupy. Luck, mostly, I think.

Since then, I've also made this red onion soup. It's not as good as my regular onion soup, courtesy of Jacques Pepin, but it was pretty good. It needs more salt than you'd guess, though, and could probably do with an extra shot of cheese.

Over the weekend, I did some additional cooking, with a helper. But that will be another post...

1 comment:

theminx said...

The Modern sounds like someplace I'd like - I need to keep it in mind for my next trip to NY. And thank you for saying "amuse-gueule" and not the prettified "amuse-bouche" that is used more often.


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