Sunday, April 4, 2010

This Week's Meals

I have a hodge podge of food photos and blogging I want to do, so I thought I'd wrap up this last week into one blog post.

We did a fair amount of eating out this week, with having our last play at the Milwaukee Repertory Theater, with my cousin in town and with my birthday celebration. Additionally, on a beautiful and unusually warm Wisconsin spring day, we were able to grill burgers. Here's how it all went down.

On Wednesday, temperatures neared 80 degrees, so we took advantage of it and made Mushroom Swiss Burgers on the grill for the first time in a long time. Along with the burgers, we had asparagus (soooo tasty this time of the year!) with my favorite mustard, maple syrup and olive oil drizzle. We also made oven-baked sweet potato chips.
The ones that turned out well were really tasty, but some of them cooked too quickly and burned. I ended up throwing away about half the batch. For the chips, we used one large sweet potato, used our handy mandolin slicer to cut thin chips and laid them out on a baking sheet. I combined olive oil, garlic, pepper, a bit of salt and paprika and brushed the mixture on the potatoes. I baked them at 425 for about 15 minutes, flipped them over and baked them a bit longer. I'd suggest baking them for not quite as long.

On Thursday, before we saw a play, we went with our friends Amanda and Jon to a great Milwaukee restaurant, Pasta Tree. It's always voted one of Milwaukee's most romantic restaurants. That's not why we went--Amanda had a great gift certificate we used--$75 off a $150 meal. We got a ton of food and a bottle of wine, and the bill came to about $60 a couple. Nice!

The boys each had a side salad, and Amanda and I started with a roasted beet and goat cheese salad.

I had pasta with a basil pesto cream sauce.

Both Amanda and Jon got the tortellini with a chunky vegetable tomato sauce.

Nate ordered ciopinno, which for the most part was tasty, but some of the fish was a bit overcooked.

For dessert, we split tiramisu and a flourless chocolate cake.

On Friday, since my cousin was in town, we got my mom's side of the family together (all 10 of us) for a traditional Milwaukee fish fry. We went to the Boerner Botanical Gardens where, during Lent, Bartolatta's offers a fish fry with an all-you-can-eat soup and salad bar.

I thought it was pretty good, but agreed with some others that it would be better if it the fish had been crispier and the potato pancakes a bit bigger. I got the combo plate, with haddock, cod and shrimp. Applesauce on the potato pancakes, of course.

Then, finally, Saturday night, my friends and I--including my friend Lisa who shares the same birthday as me--ate dinner at Cafe Centraal before heading to some bars. My friend Leah and I split two meals--the portabella sandwich and the black bean veggie burger. The restaurant has great "frites," and I had half sweet potato frites and half regular frites with a cilantro-cumin aioli dipping sauce.

For dessert, the waiter brought us two pieces of flourless chocolate cake (it was the week for flourless chocolate cake!).

It was a great food week, but boy, I need to find some Cooking Light recipes to make, fast!

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