Category Archives: General

Prime Time For Prime Rib — At One Market

Prime rib with all the fixings along with a nice glass of red wine at One Market.

Prime rib with all the fixings along with a nice glass of red wine at One Market.

 

Of course, House of Prime Rib in San Francisco has pretty much cornered the market on that regal cut of beef for decades, attracting hordes every night for its throwback table-side carving.

But lately, it seems like more and more restaurants are getting into the prime rib game, including Alexander’s Steakhouse in San Francisco ($55 with hamachi shooter and a side dish on Sundays), Dan Gordon’s in Palo Alto ($33 with fixings on Thursday through Saturday), Cockscomb in San Francisco ($55 with accompaniments), and One Market in San Francisco (Friday and Saturday, $47.95 to $55.95).

Who can blame them when prime rib holds such appeal? It’s a celebratory meat associated with Christmas and festive Sunday family get-togethers. It’s also a sizeable cut of meat that takes awhile to cook, meaning it’s not something you’re likely to prepare at home on the spur of the moment for just two of you.

My husband, aka Meat Boy, prepares prime rib for our extended family every Christmas. But even he was game to leave the cooking to someone else in May when we were invited to One Market as guests of the restaurant to try its rendition.

The rotisserie turns the prime rib over the flames.

The rotisserie turns the prime rib over the flames.

It gets wonderfully crisp all over.

It gets wonderfully crisp all over.

The expansive restaurant is outfitted with a wood-fired burning rotisserie just in front of the open kitchen. You can walk up to it to get a close look at the chickens rotating on the spit along with a massive bone-in prime rib. There’s a limited supply each Friday and Saturday night. Once it’s gone, it’s gone.

Read more

Long Weekends — Or Any Day — Were Made for Hoisin-Glazed Lamb Burgers

Five-spice, hoisin sauce, and quick pickled carrots and cucumbers turn this lamb burger sensational.

Five-spice, hoisin sauce, and quick pickled carrots and cucumbers turn this lamb burger sensational.

 

It’s reminiscent of a steamed clamshell bun folded over Peking duck — but done up burger-style with lamb instead.

How can that ever be bad?

Those sweet, savory, garlicky, addictive Asian flavors of hoisin sauce are what make this burger such a winner. That unmistakable Chinese condiment not only combines with five spice powder to flavor the ground lamb that makes up this burger, but gets slathered on the cooked patty for a final flourish. In a sense, hoisin sauce takes the place of ketchup. One taste, and you’ll never go back, too.

“Hoisin-Glazed Lamb Burgers” is from the new cookbook, “The Ultimate Burger: Plus DIY Condiments, Sides, and Boozy Milkshakes” by America’s Test Kitchen, of which I received a review copy.

Ultimate Burger

It’s one of 138 recipes for burgers of every type, as well as home-made buns, condiments, side dishes and drinks. With summer around the corner, it’s the perfect time to whet your whistle with recipes such as “Italian Pork Burgers with Broccoli Rabe,” “Spicy Brown Rice-Edamame Burgers,” “Grilled Southwestern Salmon Burgers,” and “Smoky Grilled Potato Salad.”

Read more

Get The Skinny On Pressels

Everything Pressels (front), and Sesame Pressels (back).

Everything Pressels (front), and Sesame Pressels (back).

 

Think of them as ultra skinny pretzels. That’s what Pressels are like.

As thin and crisp as crackers but with the toasty, malty taste of pretzels, the new snack apparently has 75 percent less fat and 35 percent less sodium than other pretzels on the market. They’re baked, and contain no preservatives, too.

I had a chance to try samples of its four flavors, all of which are vegan: Sea Salt, Everything, Sesame, and Sriracha.

Read more

Of Smoke and Cocktails at Gibson

This is what a chicken nugget looks like at Gibson in San Francisco.

This is what a chicken nugget looks like at Gibson in San Francisco.

 

There are restaurants where cocktails and hearth cooking are strong supporting players.

At Gibson in San Francisco, though, they are center-stage stars.

Located in the Hotel Bijou on the edge of Union Square, it offers up a unique dining experience, as I found out recently when I was invited in as a guest of the restaurant. It’s a place that does some mind-blowing things with live-fire cooking. And it’s where you can enjoy not just a prix fixe dinner with wine pairings, but cocktail pairings instead if you are so inclined. That latter is what we went with.

With an al fresco ceiling, lots of brass and Art Deco touches, it’s a little like walking into a bustling Eastern European cafe in feel. Yet it’s all modern and whimsical in its approach.

The ceiling.

The ceiling.

Operation Director Adam Chapman mixes up specialty drinks at the bar.

Operation Director Adam Chapman (right) mixes up specialty drinks at the bar.

Sit at the chef's table just inches outside the kitchen to see and hear all the action.

Sit at the chef’s table just inches outside the kitchen to see and hear all the action.

We were seated at the chef’s table, a four-seat banquette that is right in front of the wide-open kitchen. How open? I literally could have gotten up from my seat, taken two steps and been right beside the cooks. From that vantage point, it’s almost like watching live theater before you.

Read more

A Grilled Cheese That’s The Boom

A sticky, jammy center of caramelized shiitakes and onions takes this grilled cheese to another level.

A sticky, jammy center of caramelized shiitakes and onions takes this grilled cheese to another level.

 

Got cheese?

Got bread?

Then you know you have the makings for a simple yet sensational meal.

Especially if the cheese gets all melty and oozy all over that bread.

“The Great Grilled Cheese Book: Grown-Up Recipes for a Childhood Classic” (Ten Speed, 2018), of which I received a review copy, will show you just how special that combination can be.

The cookbook is by Eric Greenspan, a graduate of both the University of California at Berkeley’s Haas School of Business and Le Cordon Bleu Culinary School in Paris. He also trained under such celebrated chefs as Alain Ducasse, David Bouley, and Joachim Splichal.

The Los Angeles chef made a name for himself with his grilled cheese when he opened the Foundry on Melrose in 2007. He was also the owner of The Roof on Wilshire, where a grilled cheese is indeed still on the menu morning, noon and night.

GreatGrilledCheese

With 50 takes on grilled cheese, this book offers up both simple and fully loaded versions of this iconic sandwich, from the “Monterey Melt” (poached sush-grade tuna and sharp Cheddar), and “Frenchie” (crumbled blue cheese and date marmalade), to “Prime Time” (brie with roast beef and beet-horseradish mayo), and “Redberry Crunch” (Gouda with raspberry chutney and pecan brittle).

“The Boom” is a vegetarian grilled cheese that tastes downright meaty, thanks to caramelized shiitakes and onions that get coated with home-made Worcestershire sauce. That sauce is a breeze to make, too. Not only that, unlike store-bought Worcestershire sauce that uses anchovies, this one is vegetarian, even vegan.

Read more

« Older Entries