Archives for posts with tag: eat

With my family being from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, attending school there as well at THE Southern University, I know a thing or two about some good seafood.  A couple of things that grew on me while living there…turkey necks, potato salad (specifically my cousin Cathy’s, my favorite), crawfish pie and hot, boiled crawfish.

There’s a secret to a good batch of crawfish.  I’ve never boiled crawfish, but I’ve been around enough excellent cooks to know how it’s done.  You gotta season your water!  It’s crucial.  If you don’t, they’re pretty disgusting when eaten.  That big steaming pot should contain mountains of flavor.  Just when you think there’s enough, ADD MORE.  Lemon, garlic, onion, Zatarain’s seasonings, or whatever brand you prefer, bay leaf, like Guy Fieri says, “FLAVOR TOWN!”  This brings me to say, the places I’ve been in Dallas, they don’t do this, at all.  Let’s see, the places I can remember specifically are Aw Shuck’s and I believe Pappadeaux.  They boil the crawfish and then sprinkle this spicy “seasoning” on top.  It’s not seasoning, it’s like hot, spicy powder, all over the shell, but not a one speck touches the delicious meat inside the crawfish tail.  So pretty much when you’re eating it, all you get is a numb tongue and lips on fire.  I hate that.

All that brings me to my amazing experience I had this past week on a regular ol’ Wednesday.  One of my girls had a craving for crawfish, so I decided to join her at Nate’s Seafood & Steakhouse.  I’m always down to eat, so why not?!  I’m very familiar with Nate’s.  My family and my God family used to frequent this place back in the day, when we were a lot younger.  Seeing as though my palette wasn’t as experienced as it is now, my first time having crawfish here, all I remember was way too spicy and my poor little juvenile tongue could not handle it.  It just wasn’t a good, at all.  Fast forward to today, I was a little skeptical to order the crawfish, because I didn’t want to be disappointed again.  Trying to be positive, I went to my trusty Yelp Community, saw nothing but great reviews, so I went for it, “Let me get two pounds of crawfish, mild, one pound of shrimp and a side of JP Juice!”

crawfish.jpg

JP Juice.  It deserves a paragraph of it’s own.  If you ever visit Nate’s, you must order a bowl of this delicious liquid on the side.  The only way I can describe JP Juice is, “Oh my GAWD!”  It’s this hot mixture of garlic butter, starting off right already, lemon juice and for more tang, half pieces of lemon floating in the bowl so beautifully, and other secret seasonings I’m sure.  If I could’ve bottled this up, and taken it home, which I’m sure if I asked they would’ve made it happen, I would have.  When my crawfish and shrimp came out, the bowl sat so pretty in the middle of this boiled seafood Heaven.  It was love and lust at first dip.  The crawfish were huge, tails full of meat, the shrimp was colossal, this made it so easy for each piece to cradle that JP Juice and make it right into my mouth.  I got so greedy and so caught up in the sauce, I remember at one point, I was dipping the seafood with three fingers.  It was so un-lady like, but I didn’t give a damn. LoL.

Never have a finished every crawfish platter that has been placed in front of me.  Let me tell you, my how things have changed.  That crawfish was so good.  Just the right amount of heat, with a boat load of flavor, the spice didn’t linger.  I don’t even think my nose started running.  That’s pretty big, and no numb lip either.  I truly enjoyed my food.

Ever since that night, I’ve craved them everyday, no lie.  Don’t give me any corn, don’t want potatoes either.  So, any takers on a blind date to Nate’s?! It won’t be much talking, I just don’t wanna sit at a table, by myself, and devour two or more pounds of crawfish and shrimp.  When someone’s with you, it’s not as … piggish.

 

 

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First, I want to start by saying, I am addicted to Amazon Prime!  I know I’m late, but I can’t stop ordering things, it’s RIDICULOUS!  I mean things get to you quick, fast and in a hurry with just the click of a button!   So, earlier this week, I was watching recordings of one of my favorite shows, Top Chef, on Bravo and Chrissy Teigen was a guest judge for the Quick Fire Challenge.  Well, Padma, whom I really don’t care for, which is neither here nor there, mentioned that Mrs. John Legend had a book that recently came out, Cravings.  Now, I will say, that I never really cared for Chrissy Tiegen, she just didn’t sit right with me.  Don’t ask me why, but she kinda annoyed me.  But, honey….let me tell you, that has all changed within a matter of about a month.  She has grown on me tremendously.  You know why?! She’s a freakin’ FOODIE!  I mean, she enjoys her food, she savors her food, she gets happy around her food, food is pretty much LIFE to her, and I LOVE IT!  You already know what I did next: Amazon Prime HERE I COME!  And I got my book in two days, as promised and it was everything and more than I expected.

cookbook

First, upon opening it, I love that it’s a hardcover, made it very easy for me to stand it up in front of all of the books that I’m currently juggling.  Second, the pictures.  They take up whole pages.  I’m a visual woman, especially when it comes to food.  I don’t play.  I like to see damn near every ingredient.  I want it to make me lick the page.  I think that’s why I’m so obsessed with and following so many food pages on Instagram.  Don’t y’all judge me!  And of course, the recipes.  She’s taken simple recipes, things that are made everyday and added her own greedy, glutinous, buttery, bacon-y, bready-y, family tradition, personal touch to it.  It’s perfect!

As soon as I opened it, I flipped through every page and a few recipes that stuck out to me and I drooled over instantly…

  • Artichoke, Spinach & Buffalo Chicken Dip
  • Capon’s Chrissy Burger & Onion Rings
  • Cobb Salad with Honey Mustard Ranch Dressing
  • John’s Breakfast Sandwiches
  • Pull Apart Buttermilk Biscuits with Sausage Gravy (this though!)
  • Dump and Done Ramen Salad
  • Dad’s Fried Fish Sandwich with Coleslaw and Tartar Sauce

Ok, let me stop, because I’ll end up listing the whole book.  Literally.  Y’all I don’t even order cookbooks, because everything is at your fingertips now, thanks to the World Wide Web i.e., Instagram , Pinterest.  I must say I’m very excited about this book.  I even Tweeted, that for the month of April, since I gave up meat for Lent, that I will try my hardest to make a recipe from Cravings either every day, yes that’s extreme, OR at least every week.  The recipes look so fun, so freakin’ delicious, and Chrissy AND John look so happy in the book and I’m SURE it’s because they’ve whipped this stuff up in the kitchen numerous times.  I wanna be like THAT! LoL…And trust me, when these recipes are made, y’all WILL know.  Get Ready!

 

 

 

Any foodie, culinary expert, food blogger, chef should know that name in the title…whether it be a little or a lot, you should at least know the name, cause he is. SOMEBODY!  Stephan Pyles is that dude.  A well known chef and cookbook author, born in the great state of Texas, which there’s no surprise that he’s an expert, founding father of Southwestern cuisine, according to Wikipedia, which I do believe that fact is correct.

The New York Times called Pyles “an absolute genius in the kitchen.” The Dallas Morning News further stated, “If anyone can lead this town to its next level of culinary evolution, it’s Stephan Pyles.”

All of that above, those are the reasons why I had to visit his restaurant, located in Downtown Dallas, Stampede 66.  My parents raved about it over and over, I trust their taste buds lol…They led me in the right direction.  You walk into this place and you feel the comfort, the casual vibe, the down home, Texas feel.  The décor says it all as well.  Lots of wood everywhere, the huge bar has a modern saloon look, you got bullhorns hanging from the ceilings, accents of the country, farm life.

restaurant

Our table wasn’t ready quite yet when we arrived, so we didn’t mid sitting at the bar to wait.  Of course, ordering a drink was the next step.  Let me say, they served me one of the BEST margaritas I’ve EVER had!  No lie.  The Prickly Pear Margarita, which is what I keep calling it, but really, it’s their Modern Star Canyon Margarita.  The Margarita Cart, came to me, bar side, and started the show.  The server used the secret ingredient, liquid nitrogen and mixed it with Don Julio Blanco tequila, prickly pear fruit, Patron Citron, lime and candied jalapeno.  What was created was this beautiful, vibrant magenta, frozen cocktail, more like a pre-dinner dessert drink.  To finish it off, it was topped with sweet, whipped cream and spicy, candied jalapenos.  I loved that they served it with what I call, a spraw.  A utensil with a spook at the end, but the handle is straw that you can sip through as well.  Really cool, the whole presentation REALLY entertaining!

menu

margarita

When it comes to their food, it’s a twist to down home, country Southern cooking.  My parents kept telling me about this bread that they ordered when they went, Shiner Bock Beer Bread.  Listen. To. This.  It’s fresh, hot bread, served in a Shiner Bock Beer can.  I think it was pre-sliced for us, served with soft, creamy butter.  Every bite I took, I closed my eyes.  It was SO GOOD!  I wanted to order another one for the table, but that would’ve been too greedy.  I mean look at it, crusty, flaky, thick on the outside…soft, slightly sweet, thick, moist and hot on the inside. Believe you, me…order that bread when you go, it’s A-MA-ZING!

biscuit

I’m starting this new thing with my food posts.  I’m all about finding a new place to feed my face, and when I say new, I mean a place that I’ve never been to personally.  FOODIE FIND.  Sounds good to me!

So it’s a Saturday night.  My mom and I had a long day of running errands, we’re hungry for something, but not sure of what really.  Something quick and easy, for sure, no long waits, nothing fancy, just good food, ready to be devoured.  Mexican food, nothing hard at all…tortillas, meat, cheese, salsa, tortilla chips, sounds good right?! RIGHT!  Rusty Taco.  We pass it on our way home all the time, it’s always packed, so I mean, something MUST be good about it.

When you walk in, you can tell right away, it’s a very casual eatery.  The kitchen is open, you can see your food being prepared, the chairs and tables are steel-like picnic tables…the building kind of reminds me of an old garage.  When it comes to ordering, it’s simple as pie.  One big menu on the wall, includes all tacos even breakfast, sides (chips and salsa) and beverages.  Nothing fancy, straight to the point, order as much or as little as you want, have a seat and wait for your name to be called to pick up your order.

 

While waiting, the manager, I didn’t get his name, but he seemed like the one running the place.  He was so nice, greeted everyone, walked around to make sure everyone was doing ok and he brought us our house made, frozen margaritas.  Not knowing how big they were, we definitely could have shared; by the time we left, between my mom’s drink and my drink, we drank the equivalent of one.  As far as the alcohol level, the buzz, we felt relaxed, but I mean, I’ve had way stronger i.e. Mi Cocina, Gloria’s, Aw Shuck’s.  The chips and salsa. The chips, they were served hot and crunchy, but I’ve had a lot better.  I did like the salsa.

After about 5-7 minutes, our names were called and I was so excited. Like really.

(from r-l) #2, #10, #5 & #7

Seeing as though I’m on Weight Watchers, I tried to be smart when ordering my tacos.  I didn’t want to order anything really creamy, fried or covered in some sort of fattening sauce.  So, I ordered the #2 Roasted Pork Taco and the #7 Fish Taco, both on a corn tortilla.  My mom had the #5 Brisket Taco and the #10 Fried Chicken Taco, both on flour tortillas and it took everything in me to not ask my mom for a bite of that #10.  My tacos were good.  The queso fresco really hit the spot.  Gave the #2 a fresh kick.  I did order two of the more healthier options, which they still had a lot of flavor, but next time I go, I think I’ll splurge and treat myself to maybe, the #8, Baja Shrimp Taco. I love fried shrimp.  That’s the Creole in me LoL.  I’ll tell you what…that little styrofoam container, sitting oh so pretty on the tray, was a star player in my eyes.  It’s the Jalapeño Ranch Dressing.  It as supposed to go on the #10, but my mom asked for it on the side.  BIG mistake.  I guess she thought the spice from the jalapeño would be something she couldn’t handle.  That dressing was good on EVERYTHING.  I even started dipping my tortilla chips in it.  YES, it was that serious.

Well, enough of the small talk, I think I’ve made myself clear.  Rusty Taco was pretty good, I will be visiting again.  Of course I’ll be changing up my order just a bit.  Simple, clean, lots of flavor, in and out, casual, friendly and delicious.  That’s about how I would sum up Rusty Taco.

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