F-I-S-H Restaurant + Bar

Fall restaurant week is happening and I couldn’t be more excited. I LOVE restaurant week – going out to fancy dinners for $30?! I always try to take advantage of a new place during this time to see if it’s really worth going back to. This “week”s restaurant was a new place called F-I-S-H in downtown Stamford. They opened a couple months ago, but I had been hesitant to try it – just from driving by, it looked pricey. I’m very excited to report this restaurant was much better, cheaper, and friendlier than I expected!

THE SKINNY ON THE DRINKS

Although we had reservations, we decided to head to the bar for a pre-dinner drink. The place wasn’t crowded yet and the hostess was more than ok with us delaying a bit. The bartenders helped us right away and made excellent drinks. I had The Skinny (Grey Goose, lemon juice, and club soda) and my husband had a glass of Macallan. I mean, they even had the sphere ice cubes meant to be used when drinking whiskey! We’ve never been to place with this attention to detail with their drinks… The bar didn’t seem to get too crowded, but then again it was a Tuesday night. The crowd that was there was filled with young professionals, so that says something about good, affordable prices.

CHOOSE YOUR OWN ENDING

We then moseyed our way to dinner where the hostess let us pick a seat next to the outside. The waiter came by shortly after – he was quick, efficient, and friendly. The manager occasionally checked in on us as well, and genuinely seemed interested, he didn’t treat us as just a “drive by”. After looking at the menu, we decided to forgo the restaurant week prix fix because it all looked THAT GOOD. We ordered oysters and calamari as an app and they were extremely fresh, “close-your-eyes-and-imagine-being-in-a-tropic-location” fresh. The calamari was served with a lemon aioli that was the perfect creamy texture, while the oysters’ sauce gave a bit of a bite. The app was pretty filling so we decided to share scallops as a main meal, but not just any scallops…

The cool thing that really makes them worth a blog shout out is the way F-I-S-H serves their dinners, it’s a bit of a “mix-and-match”/”choose-your-own”. They start with a “naked fish” base – scallops, salmon, halibut, you name it, then you choose weather you want it seared or grilled.  Don’t stop there! You then get to choose which sauce you want on it – butter and lemon sauce, scampi, tomato and olives, or red coconut curry. AND, as if you don’t have enough to choose from, you can “enhance” your meal with craw fish or lump crab meat Bearnaise sauces. Whew!

We went a little off the beaten path and had the seared scallops, with lemon and capers, AND crab meat Bearnaise sauce.  They were nice enough to put the Bearnaise on the side so we could dip. With all of that going on, we were not disappointed. It was practically a party in our mouth with all of those flavors! Enough so, that we were too full to even attempt dessert. Didn’t want to ruin a good thing.

If you couldn’t tell, we really weren’t disappointed. It was such an easy time. And the fact that we could “customize” everything made us want to go back and try different concoctions! We will definitely be back. If you’re ever in the area, be sure to stop in!

FISH Restaurant

Happy Eating, XO.

Back to School :(

Labor day has come and gone, so there is no denying colleges and universities are back in full swing. Just so you know my MBA classes have been started for two weeks already so don’t whine. Anyway, if you are a dorm dweller and are missing the lovely meals prepared for you while you were home or travelling for the summer, this is your post! Not only are these good microwave friendly recipes, but it actually uses and tastes like real food. What, are we still pretending like Easy Mac and Ramen noodles are “Real”? I am pretty sure my box of oreos and popcorn are more “Real”.

Omelet in a mug

  • 1 large egg
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 tbsp. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 tbsp. diced green bell pepper (I have even tossed in leftover ham or turkey that I didn’t want going bad ,but was sick of making sandwiches with. Chop it small.)
  • Salt and ground black pepper to taste (you know I even squirted some hot sauce in there for a kick!)
  • Cooking spray

Combine egg, egg whites, cheddar cheese, bell pepper, salt, and ground pepper in a microwave-safe mug coated with non-stick spray. Microwave on high for 1 minute; stir. Return to microwave and cook until eggs are completely set, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes longer. Sprinkle cheese on top and serve.

Then, I would always crave something hot and sweet after classes. Something that was filling and warm, but also captured my sweet tooth. This is an easy spin on something we all consider as a boring and basic breakfast (ahh triple alliteration, nerd!)

Pumpkin Oatmeal

  • 1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup milk, or as needed (depends on how runny or thick you like it)
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon sugar

(Feel free to add nuts and raisins if you need something hearty to hold you over for a while, perhaps a good pre-exam breakfast?)

Mix oats and milk in a microwave-safe bowl. Cook on high for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring once. Add more milk or oats to achieve the desired consistency, and cook for another 30 seconds. Stir in pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon sugar. Heat for 20 more seconds and serve.

Hope you enjoy and do submit any of your other dorm room delicacies. I am sure everyone else would love the help!

Submit your recipe/tips to damndelish@gmail.com and receive a FREE tote if yours gets chosen to post. Check out our Instagram to see what the tote looks like. They are super cute and super useful!

Happy Eating, XO.

Fall is here guys

Vegetarianism usually makes my skin crawl…usually. I don’t feel full or complete unless there is some sort of protein with my dinner. Alas this blog has proven me wrong yet again. I always knew mushrooms were a good meat substitute because of their heartiness, but never truly was convinced. Makes no sense why I didn’t agree, they are earthy and filling. However, this dish is the first time in which I was sold on how I can eat a meal and not miss the protein. Especially because I love poblano peppers. So to test this puppy out was no hard sell. (Side note to my adoration of poblano sauce: One of my old co-worker’s grandmother would make poblano mac & cheese. It was her comfort food, a Guatemalan twist on an American classic. Ever since her sweet granny fed us all one day at work, its been my fav pepper to use). Speaking of comfort foods, polenta is the ultimate Italian comfort food so this meal will just make you feel all kinds of love. (Even if you don’t have a warm & fuzzy about poblano sauce like I do).For those of you unfamiliar with polenta, its a mashed potato-y consistency, but made with cornmeal so its healthier for you. I will say that the original recipe calls for one to make their own polenta and I will be damned if I don’t find a short cut. Shock, my good old favorite Trader Joe’s has a pre-made organic polenta they sell for a whopping $1.99 and its just so yum and low calorie! Oh, don’t worry my recipe trashes it up pretty well so that it doesn’t stay low cal for long. Guys, comfort food wouldn’t be so yummy without some butter and love. The nights are getting cooler and its time to grab your favorite hoodie and bowl of this and eat on your deck, patio, porch, backyard…you won’t be disappointed. Plus after a summer of burgers & dogs, you won’t even miss the meat!

photo
For the Poblano Sauce:
  • 2 poblano peppers (make sure you char them long enough, oyi that smell is so good! I had my handyman ask me what smelled so good)
  • ¾ cup light sour cream
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup sliced green onions
For the Mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon salted butter
  • 16 ounces sliced mushrooms (I used baby bella and white button mushrooms)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 scant tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons cold water (optional, I just sprinkled in some all-purpose flour to thicken)

For the Polenta:

  • Trader Joe’s tube of polenta
  • 1 tbsp. of salted butter

Cut up the polenta and microwave on high at 2-3 minutes with the butter. Just to soften and mix. Then you can, roast the poblano peppers over an open flame or in the oven until the outside is slightly charred. Cut into pieces and set aside. Puree the sour cream, water, oil, garlic, and salt in a food processor. Add the green onions and poblano peppers and puree until desired consistency is reached. I like to leave a little bit of texture in the sauce. In a separate pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over high heat. Add the garlic and the mushrooms; saute until golden brown. Add the sauce and the cornstarch dissolved in water. Bring to a simmer until the sauce is slightly thickened. Serve the mushrooms and sauce over the polenta. YUM-O!!

Happy Eating, XO.

Slammin’ Salmon Burger

First of all, if you’ve never seen the movie Slammin’ Salmon with Michael Clark Duncan, please rent it! You’ll die laughing. Now back to the recipe – there’s this little shack of a place in Sag Harbor called The Dock House. Every summer we make a special trip there just for the salmon burgers. They have plenty of other seafood too, but there’s something about those burgers. This summer we haven’t been able to make the trip, so I tried to recreate them myself in the last week we have of this wonderful season. I’m sure The Dock House has a special seasoning they’ll never reveal, but these burgers are damn close.

*Makes 4 burgers

  • 1 1/4 lb salmon fillet (no skin)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp of lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • A pinch or two of Marshall’s seafood rub
  • Burger buns

In a food processor, puree the salmon until smooth. Add in the onion, eggs, mustard, lemon juice, bread crumbs, and the rub. Grill the burgers on each side for about 10 minutes or until brown. You can also pan sear them, or broil them for 15 minutes. While they’re grilling, whip up some homemade tartar sauce for a dollop on top.

 Salmon burger

Happy Eating, XO.

A conversation with Martha Stewart, part 1

This past weekend I was in East Hampton visiting family, and I heard through a PureWow email (I’m obsessed with PW) that Martha Stewart would be making an appearance at Guild Hall -“A Conversation with Martha Stewart”. Who was I to pass up this opportunity with the one and only Martha Stewart? And for $15?! Yeah…

My friend and I snuck in a couple minutes late (don’t get me started on parking) and although we only snagged seats in the back, we could still see her clear as day.

Florence Fabricant, a critic for the NY Times, was casually talking to Martha over a cup of coffee as if 200 eyes weren’t hanging on each tip she gave. I whipped out my phone so I wouldn’t miss any of it, and could share it first hand with all of you. In fact, she gave so much information I didn’t want to overload you with it. The second post on Martha’s holiday tips will be coming out in a couple of weeks. But now, to get you through the last few weeks of summer…

Martha’s seafood tips

  • The best lobster: The best time to buy and cook a lobster is right after they molt (shed their shell). You can tell when the time is right because they are a much brighter red than the rest. This is when the shells are the softest and the meat is the sweetest.
  • Cooking clams: Forget about boiling water, it’s much simpler than that. Get a big skillet and spread the clams in one layer on the bottom. Grind some black pepper over the top of them and cover. Cook on medium heat until they open, anywhere from 5-10 minutes.
  • Want to make some crab meat salad? Peking crab meat is the sweetest, and in her opinion, the best.
  • Her favorite pasta dish to make includes bottarga (salted fish ro from mullet or tuna). Buy the bottarga pressed so you can shave it over the pasta noodle of your choice. For the sauce, combine breadcrumbs, parsley, chopped onions, and capers.

On Martha:

  • Her favorite kind food is Japanese.  (Fun fact: Although it may seem simple to prep, the ingredients take years to cure. Seafood for instance can take up to 24 months to dry.) If you’re ever in the NYC area, her favorite sushi restaurants are Sushi Nakazawa and Ichimura.
  • Her favorite dish, however, is her mother’s perogies.
  • On health: sadly her sister recently passed away from a brain aneurysm. Martha was adamant about taking care of yourself, no matter how hectic your schedule. “Exercise everyday, get regular doctor check ups, and drink green juice.”

I always admired Martha Stewart because she was “Martha Stewart!”. However during this conversation, you could see she’s more than just the brand. She exudes passion for everything she does; from sustainable farming, family recipes, to living a healthy lifestyle.

Stay tuned for Martha’s holiday tips!

Martha and me

Happy Eating, XO.