Monthly Archives: February 2013

BIRTHDAY QUAILS

Not that I need an excuse to throw an elaborate dinner party, but it’s become something of a tradition around these parts that I host a big feast in honor of my friends’ birthdays. (Sometimes, of course, the birthday parties end in blood and tears).

So for Fred’s birthday, something special was in order. We began with fresh oysters, halved radishes, bowls of salty pistachios, and local charcuterie. We moved onto a creamy purple potato dauphinoise spiked with thyme and sage. We relieved palates with a shaved fennel, dandelion greens, blood orange and chicory salad. The main event was a heaping platter of roast quail, fried in duck fat and stuffed with black cabbage and bacon. We ate them with our fingers, squirting the birds with juice from lemon wedges. Then we tackled a huge board of cheeses – most of them local Quebec products that we also feature at the restaurant. (Have you ever had the Alfred le Fermier? It’s one of my favorites, like a creamy, milky gruyere).  For dessert, a leftover baked alaska pinched from work and a sweet chocolate ganache tart contributed by Seeger. There’s just something about cooking for friends… it always makes me feel great.

(Quail photo by Marc)

AFTERNOON TACOS

I may not work at Le Pick Up anymore, but I’m totally one of those annoying regulars that plops down at the best seat at the bar and then hangs out for hours. Literally, hours. I like to chill there all afternoon on my days off, eating potato chips and drinking ginger ale. Like any good diner or burger joint, Depanneur Le Pick Up has a killer secret menu. A tip from me to you: Both their famous pulled porc and the grilled halloum sandwich taste even more delicious as a trio of petite tacos. It’s really a great late afternoon lunch.

LUNCHING LAWRENCE

Because I work every dinner service at Lawrence, my only opportunity to actually enjoy our food (as a client)is during lunch. Luckily, a lot of the goodies that we offer at dinner — like potted rabbit, pickled smelt, grilled ox tongue, and, of course, our desserts! — are available on our lunch menu, too. (And so much more affordable!)

The other day I stopped in with a friend and we went nuts over the menu: golden shallots with fresh goat’s curd; baked borlotti beans with chewy bacon and horseradish cream; creamy, gooey celery gratin (it’s so good, it reminds me of cheese pizza); our famous housemade charcuterie and pickles… it was a feast. All it was missing was a few bottles of wine.

SCENES FROM HOME

Glimpses into my room…

Crucial Frank Ocean / Gary Numan shrine.

Even more crucial Scott Walker shrine, he guards my room.

My mom made this beautiful pink quilt for me years and years ago. (My favorite color). It’s even brighter in real life. I love how it looks with my (much more muted) APC quilt.

A small slice of my tape collection.

A beautiful painting from my friend Andrew Paine (they’re so striking in real life), and my favorite Kate Bush photo ever, torn from a magazine, I don’t know where.

Bright colors, unwieldy shapes, patterns upon patterns, inevitable clutter… my home environment is a pretty good reflection of my wardrobe aesthetic too. Consistency!