Momofuku CCDC

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4/8/2018

When I read that Momofuku CCDC had a new chef with a new menu, I was intrigued. I checked out some brunch pictures online and was hopeful. As we sat down and looked at the menu, I did not see a couple of dishes that I was interested in. It seems that happens a lot lately. I thought prices were fair for the portion size. The two dishes we tried had sweet flavors going on which is not a surprise considering Korean food’s love of sugar.


Glazed Spare Ribs – slaw, Korean potato salad, black vinegar bbq sauce
It was a good dish. My husband really enjoyed it. the ribs were meaty and had a sweet spiciness going. The slaw was crunchy and I liked the addition of the caraway. The potato salad was really creamy.

Shrimp & Grits – poached egg, country ham xo, pickled shiitake
I asked and was told the shrimps were from the Gulf. The grits was pretty good and  creamy. I did not care for the too sweet pickled shiitake.

Gluten-Free Hazelnut Brownies

I got the recipe from Well and Good. It was a tasty brownie recipe.

Ingredients:
2/3 cup chopped 70% cacao dark chocolate (I used 85%)
5 Tbsp avocado oil or coconut oil (I used avocado oil)
1/3 cup coconut sugar or maple syrup
2 eggs
2/3 cup almond flour
2 Tbsp unsweetened cacao powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan sea salt
1 tsp of hazelnut extract (I used Amaretto)
3/4 cup chopped hazelnuts

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8×8 baking pan with parchment paper or spray with coconut oil.

2. In a small saucepan, melt chocolate and oil over low heat until smooth. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

3. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together sugar, eggs, and maple syrup until mixed well. Set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: almond flour, cacao, baking soda, and salt.

4. Whisk the mixture into the saucepan of the melted chocolate until it’s smooth. Stir in the hazelnut extract. Stir in the dry ingredients and mix until fully combined, then fold in the chopped hazelnuts. Pour the batter into your brownie pan and smooth the surface.

5. Bake at 350 degrees 25 minutes, or until edges are set and the center is still slightly underdone. (The center will set as it cools.) Slice into squares and serve.

Renwick Gallery


Gelareh Alam, Nagana Brass Gown, 2014
Caley Johnson, The Crown of Nagini, 2018

Tyler FuQua, Thorax, Ambassador of the Insects, 2015-16

Manish Arora, Winter is Coming, 2015


Manish Arora, Ready to Love, 2016

Yelena Filipchuk, Serge Beaulieu, Hybycozo

Aaron Taylor Kuffner, Gamelatron Bidadari, 2018

Shrumen Lumen, FoldHaus Art Collective, 2016

Shrumen Lumen, FoldHaus Art Collective, 2016

Mirabelle

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4/1/2018

Mirabelle has been on my list of possible places to try ever since we moved to the area. When I found out that they were offering Easter brunch, I decided to give the place a try. Unfortunately the two dishes on their online menu that I was interested in was not offered once we looked at the menu. Service was fine but not that great.  When we finished our dishes, there was a long period of time before they cleared our plates.


Grilled Rainbow Trout fricassee of Florida rock shrimp and mushrooms, curry vinaigrette
This was one of the best trouts I have had. The skin was perfectly crisp and delicious and I am not a big fish skin fan. It was cooked perfectly also. The rock shrimps and mushrooms added umami to the dish. I had to give half of it to my husband and that was not an easy task. The things I do for him!

Ora King Salmon slow cooked with a black truffle, sauce foyot almond and spring herb crust, poached egg, sauce foyot
Even though I encouraged my husband to get the famous burger, he ordered the salmon. He was very unhappy with the size of the dish. The half that I ate seemed fine. I did not taste any black truffle.

Warm Rhubarb Galette pistachio frangipane, rhubarb compote, roasted rhubarb, vanilla ice cream
There has been such a hype about the dessert menu at Mirabelle and I was really looking forward to it. Once I read the dessert menu, I was underwhelmed. The tart was tasty with a buttery crust and flavorful rhubarb but the portion was a little on the small side.

Hummus Homemade Bread

When I saw this recipe online, I was intrigued. It was worth a try but the texture was a little too crumbly. You better off using it like a bread crumbs for salad and other dishes.

Ingredients:
3 cups gf flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill buckwheat flour)
3 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cups water
3/4 cup plain Hummus
1/2 cup tahini
pinch salt
1/3 pumpkin seeds for garnish on top

Combine all the ingredients in that single bowl, and mix them well with the spatula. Transfer the dough to a pan prepared with baking paper. You could also use a bit of oil to grease.
Next and last step is to give the pumpkin seeds on top for garnish. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake all for 55 minutes at 400°F.

Himitsu

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3/25/2018

When I read that Himitsu was starting a brunch pop up, I knew I wanted to try their brunch menu. They don’t take reservation and you have to line up early. They were suppose to open at 11 AM. We got there around 10:40 AM and there was a long line formed already. They opened their door late and by the time we got to the hostess, we were told that we probably get a call around 1 PM. I knew that was not going to be the case because brunch turnover is much faster than dinner. We received a text around 12:20 that are table or in our case the seats in front of the open kitchen were ready. The menu was carb heavy. Prices were a little high considering the portions and the ingredients.




Okonimiyaki Cabbage, tare, kewpie, bonito, scallions
This was our favorite dish. Very flavorful and delicious. Tare and kewpie had a lot to do with it. Bonito was very high quality also.

Fried Oyster Benedict Butter brioche, cornmeal fried oysters, spicy hollandaise, chives, spinach
We have had oyster at himitsu before and knew we had to order it. Very fresh oysters atop buttery brioche and spinach.

Rice Cakes Rice cakes, poached egg, pickled red onion, ground spicy sausage
We only have had fried rice cakes before. It was a good dish and the sausage was a little too spicy for us.

Pluma by Bluebird Bakery

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3/25/2018

I have had Pluma by Bluebird Bakery on my list for a while now but since Seylou bakery opened up in December, I didn’t have any reason to check out places like Pluma. Since we had to wait a while to have brunch at Himitsu and my husband needed his bakery fix, I decided we should check out Pluma. They had a good selection of baked goods but the prices were high considering the size and the quality.



Smoked Ham & Gruyere Croissant

What the …? The last time I was this disappointed with ham and cheese croissant was at Payard in NYC. It definitely needed more ham and cheese and the texture was off too.

Chocolate Croissant
The chocolate croissant faired a bit better. It had good quality dark chocolate.

Centrolina

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3/18/2018

Centrolina is a restaurant that I have been checking out every time I was looking for a brunch spot on the Open Table. It is a market and a restaurant and is located in the D.C. city center. We liked the dishes we tried but felt it was a little expensive for the portion. Service was friendly and helpful.


Spinach Pappardelle bolognese meat ragu
Ever since I saw this dish on the restaurant’s instagram page, I was hoping to get to taste it. As soon as we sat down, I looked at the menu and saw the dish offered with penne. I asked our waiter if I could have it with the Pappardelle. He said that dish is usually offered at dinner time but he will ask the kitchen. Lucky for me, I got to try this delicious dish. The Pappardelle was cooked perfectly but there was not much of the very flavorful bolognese sauce. All it needed was two more table-spoons of the sauce to make it a more memorable dish.

Fettuccine carbonara, poached egg, parmigiano, cracked pepper
My husband picked this dish and it was really good. The only problem, the poached egg was not runny. It was really creamy with a good amount of the delicious pancetta.

Unconventional Diner

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3/10/2018

Unconventional Diner is located right next to the convention center. Service was a mix. We had to wait a while to be seated and was taken to a second room connected to the first via a bar. We had two waiters taking care of us. One was very bad and the other very friendly and professional. It seemed that they were short of staffing considering we were there on a Saturday.


Unconventional Lox poached egg, fried capers, wasabi cream cheese
It was an interesting creative dish. A poached egg was hidden in the middle of pieces of lox. The wasabi cream cheese was pretty good and went well with the toasted everything bagel.

Bagel

Moroccan Grits lamb merguez, broccolini, radishes, sunny egg
My husband ordered this dish. It had plenty of buttery grits and flavorful merguez sausages. Radishes were a welcome crunch. Broccolini added some fiber.