Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Just a quick hello and to say Happy Halloween! Some amazing squash and pumpkin carvings from Ray Villafane. See more here after the jump.

For those of you who never got around to carving your pumpkins ( know who you are)
here is a great recipe for Pumpkin Corn Chowder. Enough to feed a crowd I might add.

Pumpkin Corn Chowder

6 tablespoons butter or olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup skinned pumpkin or hard squash, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
12 cups vegetable or chicken broth
 2 cups pumpkin puree (you will need to roast your pumpkin and puree the flesh) or use canned
 2 cups corn kernels, cut from the cob
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoons crumbled dried sage
1/2 cup light cream or half-and-half (vegans may substitute soy or rice milk or 2 tablespoons nut butter)
salt and freshly-ground pepper to taste
1. Heat butter or olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and diced pumpkin or squash. Saute, stirring to coat the vegetables with the butter, until onion is translucent, just a few minutes.
2. Add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, 30 minutes, until pumpkin is tender.
3. Add pumpkin puree, corn, and herbs. Bring back to a boil, then reduce heat again and cook over low heat for 20 minutes more. Stir in cream and remove soup from the heat.
4. Puree half the soup in a blender and return it to the pot, stirring well to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Fall Menu 2011

A few new dishes happening now in the kitchen.

'Home-style, Old School, Old Fashioned, Southern Style Seafood, Italian Mama' and other heart-warming comfort food epitomes have been used to describe these new items. 

We think its just in time for this weather.

Friday, October 21, 2011

A few reasons why I love Denton

Peach jam from the farmers market.

Because every five miles or so, there is a park or trail to get lost in.

Beth Marie's ice cream, yes please.

Because the kids here still know how to play...for real.

Because having the best pie, showing your prized cattle and then getting sick on the Ferris wheel are still possibilities.

A full moon Summer night on our patio.

Because wild edibles are abundant within our proverbial city walls.
If anything stands still for too long, we will eventually paint it!

Don't stop believing. Period.

Because coming home is a great feeling.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Take a ride

Recently I joined many others from the hospitality industry here in Denton to take a tour of the A-train and travel to Fair park.  It was a great opportunity to meet people and to become acquainted with the ins and outs (quite literally) of our new public transportation addition in our lovely city and beyond.

The travel is easy, the views are nice and you can get to SO many places. Lunch at Craft, a hockey game at the Airlines center, the Texas State Fair, the Sixth Floor Museum? No problem, all are easy walks from the platform and not sitting in traffic on 35 is a plus.

Go down and take a ride on the train!  Become an Ambassodor for our wonderful city.
Learn more about "I got left in Denton on purpose" here.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Family Meal

Quite often we have family meal for the employees. Semi busy days, when sustenance is needed for long shifts and anyone who has the time can throw something together for little or no money. Above is one of our managers, Robert, making his specialty...chicken and dumplings. Made in the "Robert" way of course with lots of love and devotion. 

One chicken and some flour can feed 20 people and even though the beginnings are meager, the end result taste downright decadent. Sometimes I feel bad for the customers who aren't able to share our humble employee meals. Sometimes.

On Sunday mornings we have begun to transcend this tradition into a new feature on our brunch menu. { Mom's Sunday Dinner}, we are calling it and we always tend towards the home-cooking, Southern style, make our grandma proud dishes. You know this type of food always taste better the next day, so the night before you can find us, braising, roasting, smoking or God love it- frying some of the best local pork, chicken or beef around.

Join us on Sundays, now that the Fall weather is changing our moods. I promise that the Pot Roast, dumplings, collard greens, Chicken with rice or Smoked Pork will seem like just the thing.