Thursday, March 5, 2009

I've been cooking lately....

So I think I am turning into my mom. She has always loved to cook and now I am finding a passion for it too. I decided to make a japanese meal one night. I found some copycat recipes from Bennihana's and Tepanyaki. I decided to try out these recipes. Below is garlic chicken lo mein. I put chinese noodles, zuccini, onions, sesame seeds, honey, garlic cloves, chicken, CILANTRO!!! soy sauce, salt, pepper, and a few more ingredients to create this masterpiece. It was so good! I don't think the picture gives it justice.

I also decided to create my favorite salad dressing from Bennihana's and Tepanyaki. If you have tried it, you know how good it is. It is a creamy ginger dressing. Here is the recipe:

1/2 c minced onion
1/2 c sesame seed oil
1/3 c rice vinegar
2 T water
2 T minced fresh ginger
2 T minced fresh celery
2 T Ketchup
4 t Soy Sauce
2 t sugar
2 t lemon juice
1/2 t minced garlic
1/2 t salt
1/2 t ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a blender. Blend on high speed for about 30 seconds or until all ginger is pureed. Chill. Makes 1 3/4 cups. (I doubled this recipe)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Valentine's Day

For Valentine's Day Bryce took me up to Salt Lake to dinner and to stay in the Little America Hotel. While we were pulling into the hotel I looked up at the Grand America Hotel. I have always wanted to stay there so I said "Can we stay there if we win the lottery or something?" and Bryce just laughed. We went to check into Little America and the woman at the counter said that they had overbooked the hotel. I was a little scared. She then continued by saying that they have upgraded us to the Grand America across the street. Both of our mouths dropped! We couldn't believe it! So we drove across the street and got let out of our car by a man in white gloves. We walked into the hotel and couldn't believe our eyes. It is the prettiest hotel I have ever been in! There was a pot of flowers that was as big as our bedroom. We couldn't stop laughing because we felt so out of place! While we were waiting in line to check into this hotel a man in white gloves came over to us carrying a tray of chocolate chip cookies and said "Sir, Miss, would you like a cookie?" hahahahahahahaha we were like "uhhh......okay!" Again, we felt so out of place! We went up to our room which was actually like five rooms put together. There were three rooms for the bathroom (for the toilet, the shower and bath, and a vanity/closet room, One room for the bed and t.v, and one room for sitting). It was nuts!!!

So then we headed over to a restaurant called Faustinas. It was a beautiful restaurant that served us a 6-course meal. We ordered our drinks (apple juice and diet coke) and then we began our meal. We started off with a pear safron soup, followed by these amazing chicken pillow things with balsamic vinegarette drizzled on top. We then had a house and caesar salad followed by an "intermission" which was a watermelon sorbet. It was supposed to cleanse our palet. We then had our main course which was steak sitting in au jus and pesto sauce with whipped potatoes covered in shitake mushroom chips and tempura'd onions. After that we had dessert which was chocolate-dipped strawberries and chocolate ravioli. Now let me tell you, that ravioli was the best thing I have EVER had!!!! I can't even describe the taste. It was a mixture between cinnamon and honey butter and sugar and yeah! I couldn't believe how good they were. And that was our meal! Everything was portioned so well that I only felt slightly bloated when we left.

When we got back to the hotel, we decided to go swimming. We had to take this special elevator to the "spa" area. The pool had chandeliers hovering above it. Chandeliers?!!!! We, again, remembered that we didn't belong, but we acted like we did. HAHAH it was funny pretending to be snooty. All-in-all it was an amazing night! A night to remember!