A passion for food + fashion

Posts Tagged ‘kim boyce’

Puppy Love in PDX

In Drink, Food, Out of Town on October 15, 2013 at 10:01 am

Brittany spaniel

For those of you over on Instagram, it’s been indulgently documented that our family brought home a new Brittany spaniel puppy a couple weeks ago. Meet Aengus, featured here with his favorite Orvis antler chew toy! I’m so in love with this little guy! Britts are a hunting breed and are more pointer than spaniel, which means they’re active and need a lot of exercise. They are also spectacular family pets, and very loving and gentle with children. Our boys could not be more smitten.

photo 5

We found Aengus through a breeder near Portland, Oregon. When the time came to bring him home, I packed a bag and boarded a flight that arrived in PDX in the evening, just in time to dump my bags at the Ace, and head out to dinner at Pok Pok.

pok pok pdx

When I was wine and spirits editor at Bon Appétit, I found myself in Portland and the Willamette Valley pretty regularly for work. Perhaps what I miss most about Portland are the bartenders. I was reminded of just how much when I cozied up to the bar at Pok Pok and ordered a Tennessee Stud cocktail with bergamot-infused bourbon, fresh lemon and Peychaud’s Bitters.

tennessee stud cocktail

It was a perfect companion to the plate of Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce fiery wings, one of Pok Pok’s signature dishes. My mom grew up in Buffalo, NY, and so when I see wings on the menu, I feel it’s my filial duty to order them. These were outstanding, tossed in Phu Quoc fish sauce,  dipped in a rice flour and tempura flour batter and fried in rice bran oil.

ike's vietnamese fish sauce wings

If you thought things couldn’t get better, think again. Enter a plate of Muu Paa Kham Waan, which was wild boar collar meat with garlic, coriander root and black pepper in a spicy chili lime sauce. It comes with a side of sticky rice, and you take a pinch of rice and then pick up the boar meet. There are no words…

muu paa kham waan

Not shockingly, I woke up the next morning in need of coffee. And even though Stumptown is in the lobby of the Ace, I knew that a superior cup could be found a short drive away at the newest location of Ristretto Roasters. I’m in love with Ristretto’s new café on NE Couch Street and loaded up with several pounds of El Paraíso beans from Colombia. For the drive, I also pocketed a fig buckwheat scone baked by former Spago and Campanile pastry chef Kim Boyce. (When I got home, I discovered that the figgy scone recipe is included in Boyce’s awesome cookbook, Good to the Grain. Yeehaw!)

ristretto roasters

The drive out to Wind Mountain Kennels from Portland, Oregon, to Carson, Washington, was pure beauty. We snaked along the Columbia River, crossing the steel truss cantilevered Bridge of the Gods as we approached state lines.

bridge of the gods

Looking over at our new sleeping puppy on the drive back to the airport, I thought how lucky we are to live on the West Coast. There is so much beauty in the world, much of it a short road trip away, and I for one need to remember that life is about finding the time to stop and smell the coffee, savor the Northern Thai street food, and cuddle up with a new friend.

brittany spaniel

Flour Power

In Baby Love, Food on August 12, 2010 at 10:29 am

In the spirit of friendship, I won’t reveal the source but suffice it to say that if you should come across a recipe for Brown Rice Sandwich Rolls that purports itself to be “better than anything you can buy,” I’d take it with a grain of brown rice flour. It’s not that the resulting bread is bad. It’s just that it’s not that great. You know, it was perfectly fine but not mind-blowing. Maybe I’m just sore that I had to go to four stores (Whole Foods, Ralphs, Surfas, Erewhon—in that order) to buy $34 worth of assorted gluten-free flours, gluten-free rice milk and xanthan gum (note, if you need potato flour you WILL have to brave Erewhon and that whole freaky juice bar scene)…

And this in addition to all the ingredients I already had in the pantry (warm water, fine salt and baking soda, not pictured).

Still, I liked the idea of it—a high-fiber, high-protein gluten-free bread to send to school with Tiny G. And truth be told, Tiny G gobbled up a roll spread with hummus for dinner last night, so in a sense it’s a victory??? And as bread recipes go, it was pretty easy to make.

But I don’t think this is EXACTLY what Mr. Foodinista had in mind when I said we’d be having leftover grilled steak sandwiches for dinner…

And so, add to my tab the postprandial $19.27 that I spent on amazon.com for Kim Boyce’s new Good to the Grain: Baking with Whole Grain Flours, in hopes of using all those bags upon bags of whole grain flour staring at me from my kitchen counter. Boyce is a former pastry chef from Spago and Campanile, so I’m super excited to try her recipes. OR—if you have any favorites that call for brown rice flour, white rice flour, buckwheat flour, tapioca flour, potato flour, vanilla-flavored gluten-free rice milk and xanthan gum, I’m all ears.