High Tea in Pittsburgh

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

High Tea at the Inn on Negley

A friend treated me to a delicious afternoon high tea from the Inn on Negley. She was able to find this Pittsburgh tearoom through TeaMap.com and I'm quite thankful she did! It was a lovely couple hours with finger sandwiches, scones, a collection of cookies, and a decently extensive tea menu. There was no one else in the tea room, so we were able to sit in our comfy chairs observing the rain, taking obnoxious cell phone photos of the tea service without offending anyone!

I swear those chocolate-dipped chocolate madeleines were made in heaven.
I highly recommend a visit to TeaMap to find your nearest snooty tearoom ;)

Success: Brown Rice Bowl with Chard and Romesco Sauce

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Brown Rice Bowl with Chard and Romesco Sauce

Awhile back, I saw this PhD Comic basically commenting on how babies, the elderly, and grad students eat food out of a bowl and I found it ignorant. While I understand the point, that grad students eat a lot of cheap/instant ramen, it sort of completely negates the approach to cuisine belonging to large portions of the world. That is, when in Japan, one eats from a lot of bowls. This brown rice bowl with chard and romesco sauce from TheKitchn is not necessarily of Japanese descent (romesco sauce is generally known to be Spanish), and yet it too can be eaten from a bowl. Although, I am a graduate student so perhaps you should not trust my fondness for food from bowls?

The chard+romesco is tasty, but the recipe produces a lot of romesco sauce. Plan on using it on your roasted veggies throughout the week!

Brown Rice Bowl with Chard and Romesco Sauce

Success: Miso Coconut Chicken

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Miso Coconut Chicken Thighs

It may not look like much (so many shades of beige!), but this Miso Coconut Chicken from I Am A Food Blog is really lovely. However, I can't appear to eat meat more than two days in a row, so I'm not sure when I'll be making this again!

Once you buy a tub 'o miso, you've got a decent chunk of time to use it before it expires, but I figured I'd give myself a head start. I've also made the same author's Miso Butter with Asparagus and have used the leftover butter on pan-fried tofu and roasted brussels sprouts as well and it's fantastic. Next up? Probably miso soup or miso-glazed eggplant.

Miso Coconut Chicken Thighs

Un-motivational Music

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Rainbow in Scotland

Six reasons why you should not have Radiohead's "In Rainbows" playing on continuous repeat in your car during the same period of time in which you're writing your dissertation proposal (aside from the well-known fact that Radiohead is not known for being motivational):

1. Faust ARP
"We thought you had it in you
But no, no, no"

2. Bodysnatchers
"I have no idea what I am talking about"
"I have no idea what you are talking about"

3. 15step
"How come I end up where I started?
How come I end up where I went wrong?"
(The whole song, really)

4. Nude
"Don't get any big ideas
they're not gonna happen"
(taken completely out of context)

5. Four Minute Warning
"I don't wanna hear it
I don't wanna know
I just wanna run and hide
This is just a nightmare"

6. Up on the Ladder
"Give me an answer
Give me a line
I've been climbing up this ladder
I've been wasting my time"

It's not all completely hopeless. Go Slowly claims "But now I can see/That there's a way out/That there's a way out/That there's a way out". At least I've finally found the other side, no thanks to Thom Yorke and company.

Success: Lemon Lavender Cake

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Lemon Lavender Cake

In doing some pantry-ish reorganization, I rediscovered some dried lavender flowers stashed in some random corner of a cabinet. And immediately used them for this lovely cake. A Lemon Lavender Loaf Cake from DessertsForBreakfast. I've made this cake twice now. Once as a snack for friends watching my conference practice talk and once for my dissertation proposal audience. If you've got to stand up and yap in front of a room full of people, they might as well have bellies full of interesting cake.

Oh, and lest you think the lemon icing is optional...it is not. Unless you want to eat a lavender-only cake, sans lemon.
Also, don't put all the lemon juice into the icing at once. Put a little in at a time, mixing in between, until you reach your ideal icing consistency. I've found that the recommended amount of lemon juice ends up making it way too runny.

Lemon Lavender Cake

Slowly (Success: Pistachio Cake with Honey Frosting)

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Pistachio Cake with Honey Buttercream

Sometimes life is stressful and so I focus energy on using my hands in cooking and baking. It comes with the added benefit of producing something tasty and all the endorphins and goodness that comes from satisfied taste buds. This has been a rough three months. Dissertation proposal writing and the recovery afterwards is no joke. To reward myself in the quiet that comes between submitting document edits I made myself this birthday cake. This complicated pistachio cake with a honey butter cream icing. Ten dollars in crushed pistachios, and a frosting made by boiling cream, sugar, and flour on the stove.

I think, in the end, it is too sweet. So half goes to work, and the other will stay at home to be slowly picked at over the weekend. Slowly, but probably still faster than progress on my dissertation.

Round 1: Dizzy vs. Honey-Pistachio Cake
Pistachio Cake with Honey Buttercream
Pistachio Cake with Honey Buttercream

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