Supper Club: Land of Smile

Due to the dietary restrictions of two of our key members in honor of Ash Wednesday, we cancelled this week’s Supper Club. Instead, the three heathens decided to go out for dinner at Land of Smile, a Thai restaurant close by the house. Bob has been there numerous times and is a fan of it (the guy owned Midland Wok and moved to this location under a new name). I do have to say that it was good Thai food and very convenient for us.

I was in a noodley mood and so I ordered the Chicken Lo Mein. In my opinion, it was a bit bland and boring but not bad. I guess I was comparing it to my mother’s lo mein and I’m partial to hers. So, next time, I’ll have to order something different, something that I can’t compare to my mother’s cooking (she is the BEST). Bob ordered a gummy noodle dish with chicken and mixed vegetables (he can’t remember the name). It was spicy and flavorful and really excellent. Now, if you are weird about textures, this may not be the dish for you because the noodles are fat and chewy, something unfamiliar to many white folks but Bob is a trooper and a true adventurer, hence why I love him. Kate had the Massaman Curry with tofu which she thoroughly enjoyed. I didn’t try hers but Bob would definitely recommend it to anyone.

Overall, I would go back to this place for some quick and good Thai food. You guys should try it and let me know what you think.

Another Supper Club Birthday

Yes, yes, I am another year older, I was hoping it would pass by quietly but all of my friends are too awesome to let it go by unnoticed so big hugs and kisses to all of you! I have the bestest friends EVAR! I have an even better husband who greeted me with this when I came home this afternoon:

(My favorite roses.)

(You will only understand the sign if you watched the recent Office episode. It was hilarious.)

Awww, isn’t he sweet? But this post isn’t about me, it’s about the food so let’s eat!

Appetizer: Flaky Pizza Purses. These were an excellent appetizer, tasted just like pizza. I do have to say, there were a bit filling as an appetizer dish if you eat more than one (which is what everyone did). There were a couple of tweaks to the recipe. First off, Kate used puff pastry sheets instead of phyllo dough, thereby simplifying the pastry process. There was no layering/buttering needed. Secondly, she used real cheese, Romano and smoked mozzarella, to be exact. She’s vegetarian, not crazy.

Entree and Side Dishes: Pan-Fried Chicken-and-Ham Parmesan with Garlic Herb Pasta and Caesar Salad. This was a very flavorful dish, full of surprises with every bite. You had the tang of the balsamic with the tomatoes, the gooeyness of the cheese, the saltiness of the ham and the chicken tied it all together. I was introduced to the world of buttered noodles, this was the first time I’ve ever tried it and now I understand why little kids love it: it’s just so simple.

Dessert: Birthday Cake. Katie baked and constructed this beautiful cake in honor of my birthday and it tasted just as awesome as it looked. She had everything that I wanted, strawberries, chocolate, white cake. Now, she modified the recipe to incorporate my requests and it turned out perfectly. Did you know that white cake really has no flavor? For great white cake, you have to add a hint of lemon. Interesting.

Thank you girls for such a wonderful meal! Mwah!

Happy Birthday!

Today is Jen’s 29th birthday. Now, I promised I wouldn’t make any jokes about her getting old, or about her turning 30 next year, so I’m just going to take a moment to wish her a truly, sincerely happy birthday.

Love you, babe!

Supper Club – 2/11/09

Jen is feeling a little under the weather, so she asked me, in her most pathetic tiny voice, to do the Supper Club post this week. Naturally, being the nice guy I am, I complied. It was either that, or she said she would cough on me in my sleep. Regardless, this week’s supper club brought us a hearty American main dish with Middle Eastern influences for the sides and appetizers, followed up with gooey chocolate for dessert. Let’s dive in!

Appetizer: Katie’s Zataar Spiced Straws. These were really delicious, delicately spiced with a slightly tangy yogurt-based dipping sauce. Katie said they didn’t sell Zataar spice in St. Louis, so she made her own, and there is some left over after this, so I would recommend us exploring more Zataary goodness.

Main Dish: Herb Grilled Chicken with Jerusalem Salad. Jen has been feeling a return to simple, hearty dishes lately. This one was a snap to prepare: we made the marinade the night before and soaked the chicken breasts in it all day before rubbing on some more herbs and tossing them on the Foreman Grill. With good cooking this easy, there is no excuse for crappy meals. Kate’s Jerusalem Salad was not my favorite dish — the peanut buttery taste mixed strangely with the cucumbers — but I always say a good idea to try new things and we will just try something new next week!

Dessert: Mint Chocolate Fondue. Kim had been itching to do a fondue since she picked up the Melting Pot Cookbook, and this one did not disappoint. Rich, chocolately, and minty, yet without the cloying sweetness that is the downfall of so many home fondues, Kim rendition came through with shining colors. She brought a variety of snacks to dip in; my favorite were the generic Vanilla Wafers. The only caveat with this dish is that for 5 people, making about half as much would have sufficed.

All told, this was a delicious tour through our culinary world, with some new flavors balanced out by old favorites. What more could you ask for? Seconds?