Sunday, March 25, 2007

(T.V.) Dinner for One

So, I just had a whirlwind trip to Vegas with five of my closest girlfriends (you know, one of those where you arrive midday Saturday, party all night, get no sleep, and hop back on a plane at 6 in the morning to return home). Suffice it to say, Sunday (today) has consisted of me detoxing, drinking tons of water, and catching up on sleep. By 6 p.m. I was ready for dinner, but not in the mood to drive anywhere, so rummaging through my cupboard and refrigerator, I threw together the following t.v. dinner (I ate it very satisfyingly in front of my television).

Asian-Italian Fusion Noodles
2 rolls bean thread noodles
1 green onion, chopped
1 T. sweet white onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, peeled and minced
1 T. sun-dried tomatoes, packed in olive oil, coarsely chopped
1/2 T. fresh basil, chopped
1 sardine, chopped (about 1/3 can of sardines in olive oil)
1 T. Grapeseed oil
1/2 T. unsalted butter
1 T. soy sauce

Soak the noodles in very hot water while preparing the rest of the dish. Saute half of the green onion with the white onion, and garlic for about 5 minutes in the grapeseed oil and butter on medium heat (the white onion will start to turn translucent). Add the sun-dried tomatoes and sardine. Drain the noodles and roughly cut them with kitchen shears. Remove the saute from heat and toss the noodles in. Using tongs, toss in the basil and soy sauce. Top with the remaining green onion and serve. The beauty of this dish is that you don't really need to season, not even with salt (the soy sauce and sardines have plenty of salt).

Cheese Plate for Dessert
Irish Cheddar
1 T. pepper jelly

Not sure that these cheeses completed complimented each other, but they are what I had in the fridge, so I enjoyed about a tablespoon-sized portion with each for dessert. I used the individual pieces of cheese as the carrier for the pepper jelly.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Jack n' Jill's in Santa Monica

We have been here several times before, since it's walking distance from Mylo's place, but this morning was the first visit in a while. It's a little breakfast and lunch place in Santa Monica that originated in Beverly Hills (it has these two locations). The Santa Monica location (on Santa Monica Blvd. about 5 blocks east of the water) used to be called Blueberry. Not sure of the logistics behind the name change since people who have been to its other such-named place have said that the food is similar. I never went to the earlier location, but I like Jack n' Jill's. It's small, cozy, has its own organic charm.

Because there is usually a wait outside on weekends, they have complimentary freshly brewed iced green tea outside for anyone. Once inside, you order your food at the counter, and they hand you a number to put on your table so that when your food is ready, they will know where to bring your order. They have seating upstairs and on the ground floor where they proudly display a small assortment of pastries and cupcakes. They also have iced water with citrus slices in it on both levels for patrons to refill their cups at their leisure. Their coffee is brewed quite nicely, too.

On this trip, I ordered a breakfast wrap that included eggs, avocado, tomatoes, cheese and bacon (I did without these two) and chives wrapped in lavash and served with my choice of breakfast potatoes, cheese grits, or cottage cheese. Mylo order lox, onions, and eggs, topped with sour cream and capers. His entree came with a plate of their mini blueberry muffins.

I've ordered the eggs benedict in past visits (since I have to try eggs benedict wherever I go that it's offered) and I was not disappointed. Although the hollandaise was a little thick, it was delicious. Maybe because it's so thick I didn't get too much of it, so I had to ask for a little extra on the side. They promptly provided, no questions asked. Their service has actually always been good. Your coffee cup will never go empty and your table will always be cleaned.

Their menu has many healthy and interesting options for a place as small as theirs. A few of my favorites: the Beverly Frittata (egg whites, spicy ground turkey, grilled onions, tomato, garlic and mozzarella cheese served pancake style), the Breakfast Panini (three over hard eggs and turkey bacon, cheddar cheese, tomatoes and avocado all grilled in a crispy Panini), and any of their pancake stacks.

All in all, Jack n' Jill's in Santa Monica is a solid weekend breakfast experience. I would recommend to most anyone.

Jack n' Jill's
510 Santa Monica Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 656-1501