There was a plethora of cheese in our household last week…which is definitely not a bad thing! With some leftover no knead bread on it’s last leg, grilled cheese seemed like the perfect dinner. I came across this recipe: http://www.closetcooking.com/2010/03/caramelized-apple-grilled-cheese.html and immediately began drooling at my computer screen. I pretty much followed the recipe beginning with the delicious sauteed apples in butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon.
Our apartment smelled exactly like apple pie (I seem to have some sort of obsession with this dessert, if you remember my ice cream). The sweet apples went so well with the strong old cheddar and crusty bread. With some leftover green soup from our previous dinner party, it was the perfect comforting and fast weeknight meal.
Besides discovering my new favorite way to use up cheese and day old bread, I discovered a new favorite restaurant. James Restaurant, located in Prospect Heights, is such a cute and homey neighborhood spot, situated right in the middle of a residential street. Upon walking in and discovering Kerri Russell was also dining here, I was even more excited for my meal. My dining partner and I had such a hard time deciding what to order…everything sounding so delicious. I know I’ve probably said that before but honestly…look at the menu! I could have been happy ordering absolutely anything! In order to try as much as possible, we opted to share two appetizers. The much raved about spinach salad, and the shrimp with polenta.
All the positive reviews on this salad didn’t do it justice…the crusty Parmesan cheese and soft mushrooms and onions with the balsamic and spinach…a perfect salad if you ask me! The shrimp was no slouch either..that sauce was definitely sopped up with a lot of brioche brought to our table. When it came to the mains, we were both torn between the amazing sounding (and looking) burger, chicken, and risotto. I rarely order chicken in a restaurant because I usually find it quite boring, but when the waitress told me it was her favorite dish on the menu, I immediately felt like chicken tonight! My friend went with the risotto…which I was happy about because I really wanted to try it too!
As you can see form the description, this was no boring chicken! It was so moist and the flavor from the miso dressing was so unique. Definitely a place to go when you’re craving some good bird. The risotto was also quite nice, but to be honest, I was very happy with my choice.
I can’t wait to go back to James to try their Sunday night, $30 three course dinners (how good a deal is that?!) and their Monday burger night.
So Channukah is almost upon us. Obviously, I think about the food.
The smell of potato latkes being fried on the stove-top definitely lets you know this 8 day celebration of lights is fast approaching. I love the rosti style latke made of shredded potatoes, egg, matzah meal (or flour), and salt and pepper. Simple and delicious, they are great topped with apple sauce or sour cream. We’ve also made some more “modern” takes on this fried potato pancake…shredded carrot and zucchini latke, sweet potato latke, parsnip latke…I guess the possibilities are endless. It’s definitely best to always include some regular potato in your latkes because it’s that starchiness that helps hold the strands of vegetables together.