Posts Tagged ‘guacamole’

Cooking Dinner for the Editors

Last night, I tackled item #5 from my list, and cooked dinner for the editorial team. Our place is pretty small and we only have three chairs, so we went to Bernat’s to cook — he has a bigger table and enough chairs for the five of us. We still had to bring over some extra plates and silverware.

I made guacamole and cooked what I like to call my Mexican veggie stew, which is really just black beans, corn and whatever veggies I have around cooked in salsa. We also had rice and tortilla chips. It’s a pretty easy dinner, but the kind of veggie meal that fills everyone up and doesn’t leave them asking “Where’s the meat?” The guacamole didn’t last more than 10 minutes before it was totally devoured, and we made a good dent in the large pot of stew. Evan’s bringing the rest to work today.

And to top it all off, Peter brought an assortment of pastries from Lukacs that we shared, and we cracked open the bottle of Tokaji Evan’s brother bought him for his birthday. I’m not usually a fan of dessert wines, but this one was fantastic.

I’m still full.

A “Mexiterranean” Dinner at Ring Bar and Cafe

Tonight we went to an interesting restaurant/bar called Ring on Andrassy. We originally intended to go to Abszint, but it was closed for a private party, so after checking out the menu at Ring, which was only a few doors down, and noticing plenty of empty tables inside, we decided to check it out.

It was somewhat of a Mediterranean-Mexican mix of foods, with items like guacamole, couscous, pita and hummus, fajitas and quesadillas on the menu. There were also some fish and steak dishes. I got a mixed greens salad which was quite good–lots of tomatoes, sun-dried and fresh, and sesame seeds in a tart vinaigrette accompanied by soft toasted bread with a garlicky cheese spread on it and some festive tortilla chips. Evan got guacamole and grilled tortillas to start, which was pretty good, though it was much saltier and spiced up than the guacamole I usually have.

I had vegetable quesadillas for my main course, and they were pretty good, though once again there was something a bit off. The veggie combination included green beans, carrots and broccoli, which didn’t mesh well with the cheese and overly tomatoey salsa. It just seemed like the flavor combination needed a bit more thought.

Evan got a burger for his main course, and he liked it a lot–he even wrote in to to tell them to check it out for their ongoing “Burgerwars” feature. He said:

My girlfriend and I went to Ring Bar & Cafe tonight on Andrassy (just
across from Pizza Marzano), and their burger wasn’t half bad. The
restaurant itself seems to be “Mexiterranean”, but the burger was
pretty good. I attached a couple poorly-lit snapshots from my phone,
which probably won’t support my recommendation at all, but anyway
there you go. I also tried the Gerbeaud Pub burger, and although i did
like that one, I actually liked this one better. This came with
sauteed onions, pickles, lettuce, and tomato, and was well-cooked. I
was a little dismayed when I asked for mustard and they told me they
didn’t have any, but once I bit into the burger I found that there was
in fact a mustard-based sauce already on it. Go figure.

Thanks, Evan, for finally providing some info for the blog! (Finally, my first pseudo guest blogger… I guess it’s still more of a quote since he just let me copy part of an email he sent–to another blog.)

He also included some photos, which we unfortunately only decided to take once he was about halfway done with the burger. They were also taken with his cell phone.

Ring BurgerRing Burger

And now we’re out for the weekend. Tomorrow morning, Evan and I are heading to Vienna! We’ll be back on Monday, with lots to share–including new pictures. If you can send recommendations for what to see before we leave, we’d love to hear them.

Holy Guacamole!

Last night, I also made some guacamole–I know, lots of food talk for one day. But the fact that I made guacamole in Hungary is interesting, in my mind, at least.

It all started this summer when Evan and I went out to dinner and ordered an appetizer with avocados in it. Evan warned me that he hadn’t had any good avocados in the restaurants here, but after living in California for so long, who could resist the allure of something so delicious and so reminiscent of home? Well, after a bite into the green slice, I could. It was so hard I could barely cut it with a knife. Someone, and I’m not naming names (ahem, chef), didn’t let the poor little fruit ripen, so it was tasteless, hard and absolutely unappealing.

This sent me on a mission: Were all avocados in Hungary bad, or do people here just not know how to use them? Well, I went to the big market and bought two nice-looking avocados, let them ripen in a drawer and made some guacamole. It turned out great. And the more markets I went to, the more avocados I saw. They sell them at Match, they sell them in the small vegetable stands. They seem to be pretty common.

And though this past time I didn’t quite let one of the avocados ripen enough (my own fault for buying different varieties a few days apart), I was still able to make a decent one-avocado guacamole. And this time I found some hot sauce to put in it too–no more spicing it up with paprika.