Saturday, 27 September 2014

Cucina Enoteca in Del Mar

My foodie friend and favorite Pilates instructor met me at Cucina Enoteca to catch up, take advantage of San Diego's Restaurant Week and be shamelessly flattered by the server.

Great way to end the week.

First thing I spotted inside the door was this dog. I think it was made from strips of rolled newspaper.

Hanging above the tables were vintage wooden shoe lasts.

And globes.

And covering the tables were charming ruffled linens.

All of which were completely forgotten when our waiter dropped off "two beautiful pizzas for two beautiful women"…...

Pizza with foraged mushrooms + taleggio + braised leek + truffle oil

Chatted up nearby diners who highly recommend the following appetizers:

* stuffed squash blossoms | herb ricotta + opal basil pesto + lemon aioli 
* grilled octopus | pickled beech mushroom + green onion+ acqua pazza aioli

Will have to wait till next time and oh there will definitely be a next time!

Saturday, 20 September 2014

September Swims

My pool pass is quickly filling up.

It has been brutally hot this month.

In the 90's.

Besides keeping cool in the water, I have had the chance to observe swimmers, swimming attire and swimming etiquette on a regular basis.

Such as, it is customary to ask before you 'share a lane', dudes often wear swimsuits that look like biking shorts without the butt pad, many people use kick boards, pull-buoys and hand paddles (who knew the sport needed so much equipment).

When I purchased my pass from the lifeguard at the front desk, I mentioned that my technique leaves a lot to be desired and I might be the funniest looking swimmer out there. Later he came on duty, watched me swim a lap and bent over near my lane to say "not by a long shot" - it was gratifying to hear!

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Sunset Sail in San Diego

For my birthday this year we went on a sunset sail that left from Harbor Island.

Even though we are lucky enough to have spent the summer swimming in pools and cavorting in the ocean, there is just something about floating around on a boat that provides pure bliss.

The whole adventure was only two hours but it felt like we went on a vacation - it was that much fun.

Four others signed up as well --- a young couple from Covina that watched the sunset through their phones (oh social media) and a not-as-young couple who left their 8-month old twins with sitters --- plus Captain John and his able sidekick.

Great group.

Each couple took a turn slumped down on the two bean bags in the front of the boat that offered the best view and a sense of complete privacy.

Here is a look at San Diego, from the water!

Almost a full moon.

Bare feet on board -- Captain said so.

Captain John at the helm.

Ropes everywhere.

The constant sound of lapping water.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

The Flying Pig In Oceanside

Heard about it. Read about it. Had to try it.

On a street lined with garages, The Flying Pig specializes in pork products (Duh!) and farm-to-table dishes.

All I can say is that it is FUN. Even on a Tuesday night in September before the sun has set.

The place fills up quickly.

The beet salad and short ribs are winners.

Small baby squirming in high chair on one side of us. Long-haired, bearded, nipple-pierced, tattoo-knuckled gentleman on the other.

Really fun crowd and friendly service to boot!

Flying Pig hangs over the bar.

Garage next door.

Garage one door down.

Pigs do fly in Oceanside…

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Fancy S'Mores

Summer fun often involves a fire, a stick and a s'more.

With emphasis on the S'MORE.

Yummy at the beach, at a campsite, or even a Labor Day BBQ.

This past weekend I made a fancy version thanks to a recipe posted by the Queen of Desserts, Bakerella, that she used from a new cookbook by Jennifer Shea called Trophy Cupcakes and Parties!

Used large baggie with the end cut off to do the piping
 --- gives it a more rustic, campfire look!

There are quite a few steps to make these cupcakes but the end result is worth it.

A shot glass is the perfect size for tamping down the graham cracker/sugar/butter mixture.

A sprinkle of chopped bittersweet chocolate on top of the crust.

Cooked and whipped frosting - better than any marshmallow in a bag.

Just before torching them to a golden brown.

Sticky deliciousness!