Verjus Wine Bar in Paris

When I was living in Paris a few years ago, I was always hearing good things about Hidden Kitchen, an underground supper club.  When my mother came to visit from the States, I made sure to put in a request for a reservation.  Then one day before the dinner, I woke up super sick.  As much as I wanted to go, I knew I couldn't so I emailed them my cancellation.  Hidden Kitchen ended up closing as the couple running it, Braden and Laura, decided to open their own restaurant in Paris.  On a cold winter night this past February, I finally got to stop by and try the Verjus wine bar for dinner.
Celeriac dumplings w/ dan-dan sauce, chives, toasted peanuts
 Buttermilk fried chicken w/napa cabbage slaw and micro greens
 Amazing charred broccoli with crackly Korean rice cake, anchovy, lemon and parm

Verjus wine bar is located at 47 rue Montpensier in Paris in the 1st


Around Here Lately

Dinner has often been peaches, prosciutto, and goat cheese on the side porch
We've been eating homemade yogurt for breakfast
...and enjoyed the summer skyline before a pasta dinner at Tavolata
We walked to the U-District Farmers Market
...and visited the P-patch along the way
I made meatball subs for a beach picnic
...and this was the view at the picnic
This was in someone's yard to celebrate the London Olympics!
I've been improving my grilling skills
...while drinking peach and green tea coolers
I've cooled off with homemade lemon-buttermilk popsicles
...and watched the Olympics with homemade "TV dinners"


Summer Corn Salad with Feta and Chile-Lime Dressing

Yesterday was a busy day in the kitchen.  There was chicken marinating, galette dough making, and two batches of scones (the first one had to be thrown out due to forgetting the eggs!) being whipped up.  I wanted something simple to accompany our chicken that we were going to grill on the BBQ.  I had cooked up three ears of corn the night before and decided on a corn salad.  After glancing in the fridge and pantry for what I had on hand, I went to work.  Wanting to relive my wonderful trip to Greece, I included feta cheese and grape tomatoes (if only they were Santorini cherry tomatoes!).  At first taste, the dressing tasted too sharp and acidic, so I added a teaspoon of sugar and that did the trick.  This salad is extremely fresh and tastes best eaten right away.  Recipe below.

Summer Corn Salad with Feta and Chile-Lime Dressing (serves 3-4)
3 ears of corn
10 oz. grape or cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1/2 cup crumbled feta (with the liquid)
1 shallot, chopped finely
juice of 1 lime
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon chile
1/4 teaspoon sugar
salt and pepper to taste
5 large butter lettuce leaves
Preheat oven to 400 F.  Boil 3 ears of corn on stove.  Let cool to room temperature.  Use a knife to remove kernels and place in a medium-sized bowl.  Put tomatoes on a parchment-lined baking sheet and lightly toss with olive oil and salt.  Cook in oven for 25 minutes or until tomatoes are ready to burst.  Make dressing by combining lime juice, cumin, chile, sugar, and salt and pepper.  Add tomatoes, feta, and chopped shallots to bowl.  Toss with dressing.  Arrange the butter lettuce leaves around the serving plate and scoop salad onto leaves.  Enjoy!


Pearl Couscous Salad with Cherries and Arugula

This summer, we've been having beach picnics at our local park.  We make a simple dinner that is easily transportable and we lug our fold-up chairs down to the shore.  There's nothing quite like eating dinner with the quiet lapping of waves and pinkish sky overhead.  This pearl couscous salad is the perfect picnic food and the ingredients scream summer.  I got the wonderful recipe from The Kitchn but made a few changes, including omitting the celery and walnuts, and substituting fresh cherries instead of dried ones.  The bite from the arugula and the sharp cheese (I used Dubliner Kerrygold) balance out the sweet quality of the cherries and citrus dressing.  We've eaten this salad quite a few times this summer and I expect a few more appearances before we kick off autumn.  Recipe here.