What are we doing for lunch today?

"Come on guys, it's Friday. Let's go to Upstairs" - T. Koop

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Everest Buffet

Everest on Bloor near Brunswick is a pretty good Indian buffet for $8.95.

You get fresh naan, and the butter chicken has a nice tangy, juicy taste. The other dishes are pretty decent too, esp. the veg. meals. The items are not that different from other typical Indian buffets, but the execution is really good a Everest, and easily better than Nataraj across the street (which is only a buck cheaper).

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Monday, August 21, 2006

Weekend Roasts

First up some chicken thighs. I coated these on hot sauce, barbecue sauce and maple syrup and roasted for 45 mins at 400 degrees in the toaster oven.

I think the oven was too hot, the skin burned and got too dry, but the meat was still nice and moist. But I liked the hot and sweet taste. So I picked up a pork butt the next day -- I figured that would be the best way to put that maple syrup to use.

I rubbed some Italian spices and thai crushed pepper on to it, along with the maple syrup and roasted it at 325 degrees for 90 minutes. It was super tender and the sauce was spicy and sweet and perfectly complemented the pork.

It was pretty damn good, and the pork came apart really easily. It would make really good sandwiches, but I just ate half of the roast on it's own.

This is a pretty pasty dish that's easy to roast up, but you have to be careful not to roast it too hot (burnt!) or to long (dry!). After a day in the fridge it fired up, and sliced up it was not bad -- but didn't taste nearly as decadent as it did straight out of the oven.

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Saturday, August 19, 2006

Centro Trattoria Formaggi

Today I assbiked up to St.Clair and Dufferin to Centro. Centro is an Italian grocery store with a cafeteria at the back where old Italian ladies cook up homestyle meals.

Ian showed me the place and I've been there and had the veal, but a place like Brasiliano does just as good a veal with some sides for a bit less price. Centro does have a lot of other authentic Italian type stuff Brasiliano doesn't.

I went for the cannelloni, which was stuffed with basil and ricottta, and the caprese. I also tried the tripe, which Ian's dad is nuts about; and now I see why. The tripe is stewed up in a really tasty anchovy sauce.

Usually when I cook Italian type dishes, I get really strong flavours. Everything at Centro is really tasty, but the flavours are subtle, not overpowering -- and not salty like a lot of Portuguese places are. My impression is that it really is homestyle Italian cooking.

The canneloni was good, but the tripe was INCREDIBLE. So good. Next time I will go for a tripe plate. They usually pair it with rice or a less fancy pasta and green salad.

Because I deviated from the menu format and got caprese and tripe on the side, it added up and came to $12 w. drink. Typically two cannelloni, or a veal plate is about $6-7. Each side was another $2-3.

For the record the back room cafeteria is open everyday, though Saturdays are probably the busiest and it's closed Sundays.

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