Tag Archives: food

barcelona

Crispy Soft Shell Crab

Arugula Salad, Creamy Lemon Aioli

2  soft shell crabs (cleaned)
milk
1 cup Wondra &
1 cup semolina
2 1/2 oz arugula
1 1/2 T lemon aioli (see below)
vegetable/ canola oil for deep
 frying or pan frying
Lemon Aioli
1 cup mayonnaise
juice of 2 lemons
1/2 bulb roasted garlic
1/2 cup water
pinch of salt

Soft Shell Crab

1. Clean soft shells and soak in milk for 5 minutes prior to use.

2. Mix together Wondra & semolina and dredge crabs in mixture.

3. Deep fry at 350 degrees for 3 minutes, making sure crabs are fully

submerged in the oil, or you can pan fry in a cup of vegetable/canola oil,

2 1/2  minutes each side.

Lemon Aioli

1. Mix all ingredients together.

2. Toss a little(or if you want more use more) over the arugula.

Place arugula salad on plate, crab on top, and slice of lemon wedge on side for finishing. That’s all! Simple simple.

Serves 2.

bamboo10

We Felt Like “Regulars” in Minutes!

by The Twin Tasters

Before we even get to the food, hats off to Sonny Chen, general manager of Black Bamboo Chinese Restaurant, for well deserved accolades as “the best” Chinese food in town! Sonny, a Watkinson and Hall High grad, has built quite a faithful following at his small Farmington Avenue restaurant which has some seating, but mostly serves take out and caters as well.

We approached this tasting with wide open minds and we let the chefs prepare their specialties and most popular items.

The Scallion Pancakes, or Asian Flatbread as Sonny called them, were crispy, hot and delicious. Made from rice flour, these appetizers are gluten free (as long as you avoid the soy sauce).

The Vegan BBQ Boneless Ribs could almost fool a meat eater. Made with Seitan (also called wheat meat or wheat gluten), they have a slightly chewy texture that hugs the savory sauce.

We were happy with the plentiful fresh ginger slices in the Shrimp with Chinese Vegetables, and the organic green beans in our veggie side dish were cooked just right. The sauces were light and flavorful. Oh, almost forgot the pork dumplings – handmade to perfection.

Black Bamboo Chinese Restaurant
844-A Farmington Ave.
West Hartford, CT 06119
860.236.8888
myblackbamboo.com

You never know where The Twin Tasters will pop up in their quest for good food in town. 
Contact: editor@westhartfordmagazine.com

To view the full magazine online, please visit our ISSUU library.

mildgarlicparm1579

Some like it Hot…Medium…Mild.

by The Twin Tasters

Your entire family’s chicken wing cravings have been answered.  Sliders Grill & Bar has 21 options varying from no heat, to some heat, to insanely hot!  While this sounds like they must be mass-producing wings out of the freezer, that is not the case.  The “famous sauces” are made fresh daily, on the premises and our sampling was a testament to that.  The chicken wings were cooked to perfection, and the sauces penetrated just the right amount to make the flavors pop! (Note, on the smaller orders, you can even order all wings, or all drums for a small charge).

If you like dry-rubbed style chicken wings, you need to try the Garlic Parmesan wings.  We were glad we only had 6 to share between two of us, otherwise we would have filled up on those.

For a medium, we picked a sweet flavor called “Hot & Sweet,” which had a tiny bit of heat, but was definitely more on the sweet side.

We didn’t go totally “insane” on the heat scale.  Our dark “Caribbean Jerk” was a good choice and we are pretty sure we picked out one of the secret ingredients to be molasses.  It started out sweet, and then the right amount of heat came in.  Yum!

Sliders Grill & Bar
176 Newingotn Road
West Hartford, CT 06110
(860) 233-9000
slidersgrillbar.com

You never know where The Twin Tasters will pop up in their quest for good food in town. 
Contact: editor@westhartfordmagazine.com

foodchicken010

Oven Roasted Chicken w/ Mushroom Barley & a Roasted Garlic Veloute

2 bone-in chicken breast or legs and thighs

Mushroom Barley
1 cup pearled barley (soaked in cold water overnight)
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup mushrooms (cremini, button, portobello, exotic)
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
fresh chopped rosemary & thyme
salt & pepper to taste

Garlic Veloute
1 cup whole garlic cloves
1/4 cup diced onions
1/4 cup diced celery
2 large carrots cut in half & quartered
4 cups water
1/2 stick of unsalted butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 sprig each rosemary and thyme
salt & pepper to taste

Chicken
1. Season chicken generously on both sides with salt & pepper.  Preheat oven to 350°.
2. In a large sauté pan over high heat, sear chicken skin side down for 3-5 minutes or until golden brown.
3. Transfer chicken to an aluminum foil lined sheet tray skin side up.
4. Bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes or until chicken is firm to the touch or a thermometer reads 165°.

Mushroom Barley
1. In a medium sized pot over medium heat, sauté chopped mushrooms with cooking oil or butter until tender & lightly browned.
2. Drain barley & add to pot with mushrooms.
3. Add chicken stock & bring to a boil.
4. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover pot & stir occasionally for 10-15 minutes or until stock has been absorbed & barley is tender. 5. Remove from heat, gently fold in parmesan, herbs, salt & pepper.

Garlic Veloute
1. In a sauté pan over low heat, melt butter & add flour to create a roux.  Cook the flour out of the roux for 5 minutes until the roux looks like “wet sand”.  Refrigerate roux for 1 hour.
2. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, saute garlic, onions, celery, carrots, & whole sprigs of rosemary & thyme until browned all around.  Add water & simmer for 45 minutes.
3. Strain garlic stock back into saucepan.  Whisk cold roux into hot strained garlic stock.
4. Season with salt & pepper.  Add hot water to adjust for desired viscosity.

Pond House Café
1555 Asylum Ave. West Hartford
www.pondhousecafe.com
(860) 231.8823

Chef Josh Fiorillo has been cooking for 7 years and is the chef de cuisine at the Pond House Cafe.

 

Prudential_28

Camarones con Tequila y Naranja

(Shrimp with Tequila and Orange Sauce)

Tequila Orange Sauce & Sauteed Shrimp

4 oz. Blanco Tequila
12 oz. fresh orange juice
24 ea. jumbo white shrimp
Salt to taste
Canola oil
1/2 cup white onion
1 Jalapeño minced
2 cloves minced garlic
3 tbsp unsalted butter

Tropical Pico de Gallo
1/2 cup diced mango
1/2 cup diced pineapple
1 cup diced tomatoes
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1 tbsp minced jalapeño
1/4 cup sliced scallion
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 tbsp mint chiffonade
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
Salt to taste

Mashed Boniato
5 Boniatos (a sweet potato also known as Batata)
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 stick melted butter

Tequila Orange Sauce & Sauteed Shrimp

1. Combine the Tequila and orange juice and set aside.
2. Season the shrimp generously with salt and place in a large skillet that has been coated with canola oil.
3. Cook on one side over medium-high heat until browned, turn the shrimp, and add the chopped vegetables.
4. Deglaze the pan with the Tequila orange mixture and cook until shrimp are cooked through, add the butter and check seasoning.

Tropical Pico de Gallo

1. Combine all ingredients in mixing bowl, add orange juice and season with salt to taste.
2. Let the pico de gallo sit for half hour while you prepare the shrimp and Boniato, and re-taste test it and make any adjustments necessary to seasoning.

Mashed Boniato

1. Boil the Boniato, with skin on, until tender.
2. Drain the water and mash with the heavy cream and butter until smooth.

Place a large spoonful of the mashed Boniato on each dinner plate. Pile on 6 shrimp on top of each mound of potatoes.  Top off with a generous portion of the pico de gallo. Add additional chopped cilantro for garnish as desired. Enjoy!  Serves 4.
Hint: Make the Pico de Gallo first, and then chill it while you prepare the rest of the meal.

Besito Mexican Restaurant
46 South Main St., West Hartford
www.besitomex.com
(860) 233-2500

Long Island native and chef, Steve Yopp began and followed his career with Besito to West Hartford. Gathering influence from his recent trip to Mexico and the world around him, Steve attempts to take Mexican cuisine to the next level, maintaining that “ you can turn anything into a great Mexican dish as long as the authentic ingredients remain.” 

barcelona_30

Crispy Soft Shell Crab with Arugula Salad and Creamy Lemon Aioli

2  soft shell crabs (cleaned)
milk
1 cup Wondra & 1 cup semolina
2 1/2 oz arugula
1 1/2 T lemon aioli (see below)
vegetable/ canola oil for deep frying or pan frying

Lemon Aioli

1 cup mayonnaise
juice of 2 lemons
1/2 bulb roasted garlic
1/2 cup water
pinch of salt

Soft Shell Crab

1. Clean soft shells and soak in milk for 5 minutes prior to use.

2. Mix together Wondra & semolina and dredge crabs in mixture.

3. Deep fry at 350 degrees for 3 minutes, making sure crabs are fully submerged in the oil, or you can pan fry in a cup of vegetable/canola oil, 2 1/2  minutes each side.

Lemon Aioli

1. Mix all ingredients together.

2. Toss a little(or if you want more use more) over the arugula.

Place arugula salad on plate, crab on top, and slice of lemon wedge on side for finishing. That’s all! Simple simple.

Serves 2.

Barcelona Restaurant & Wine Bar
971 Farmington Ave.
West Hartford, CT 06107
860.218.2100 barcelonawinebar.com

AdamGreenberg_barcelona_43Barcelona and soon to be Bartaco’s Executive Chef Adam Greenberg is proud to say he is a West Hartford native. “I went to Morley Elementary School.” After gaining years of culinary experience from top chefs around the world, he found himself returning to his hometown to lend his charm and culinary creativity to the Barcelona West Hartford experience. When he’s not working, you can find Adam  eating out with his girlfriend Anna or playing with his dog “Snoop” around town.

brookline-sour1

Brookline Sour

6 to 8 red grapes handful of thyme
½ oz. Simple Syrup
½ oz. Lemon Juice
1 oz. High West white whiskey
2 squirts boston bittahs
3 red grapes, sliced in half

1.  In a clean cocktail shaker, muddle the grapes, thyme and simple syrup

2.  Add the lemon juice, whiskey and bitters.
Fill with ice and shake well

3. Strain into ice filled rocks glass.

4. Garnish with sliced grapes.

Cocktail created by: Gretchen Thomas, Wine & Spirits Director

 

_DSC3971Barcelona Wine Bar 
& Restaurant
971 Farmington Ave.
West Hartford, CT 06107
www.barcelonawinebar.com
860.218.2100

As with the food, the décor at Barcelona Wine Bar & Restaurant is classic, sophisticated and understated. The design borrows from the architectural traditions of Barcelona, Milan, Lisbon, London and Tribeca. A wide selection of fine wine and good food, makes Barcelona a great place to eat, meet and have fun.

latkecupcakes23

Caramel Apple Cupcake

4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons
(2 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 1/4 cups sugar
6 large eggs
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups milk
Vanilla Buttercream, either homemade or store-bought
Apple Pie Filling, either store-bought or homemade
Caramel Sauce (available with ice cream toppings)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 muffin tins with cupcake liners. Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon and set aside.

2. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, for about 4 minutes. Mix in the eggs, one at a time, scraping down sides of bowl, until well blended. Mix in vanilla.

3. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with milk, beating until combined after each. Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin tins. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until tops spring back when lightly touched, about 20 minutes. Let cool in tins on wire racks.

4. Once cool, using a small paring knife held at a 45 degree angle cut a small cone from the center of each cupcake.  Remove cake ‘cone’ and cut _” in slab from the top of each cone.

5. Fill each cupcake with apple pie filling and top with reserved cake circle.

6. Pipe or frost each cupcake with buttercream.

7. Drizzle with caramel sauce.

The Crown Market
2471 Albany Ave.
West Hartford, CT 06117
www.thecrownmarket.com
860.236.1965 

anitacrownpastryNew addition to our seasoned bakery team, Pastry Chef Anita Magistrali joins us from her years of experience in a local CT bakery.  Anita attended The Culinary School of America where she fell in love with baking and pastry arts.  Baking from scratch each day, Anita, along with the Crown Bakery Team strive to provide an old world bakery experience nestled within the confines of a full service market.

latkeandcupcakes11

Spiced Autumn Latkes w/Applesauce Side Recipe

1 sweet potato, peeled
1 parsnip, peeled
1 yellow onion
2-3 Russet or Yukon gold potatoes
1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1/2 teaspoon fresh milled
ground fennel seed
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh milled
black pepper
2 eggs, beaten
3 ounces flour
peanut or other high smoke point oil
applesauce or sour cream for serving

1. Grate the sweet potato, onion, and parsnip using the large holes into a large bowl.

2. Wash and scrub the Russet potatoes very well, leaving the skins on. Grate into the bowl with the other vegetables. Add the salt, pepper, fennel, and ginger. Let rest a few minutes.

3. Using a colander (or cheesecloth if you prefer) wring all the excess moisture from the mix. Repeat, then return to the bowl.

4. Mix in the beaten eggs and flour.

5. Generously coat the bottom of a heavy pan with 1/8” of oil. Heat to medium high until a drop of liquid would sizzle in the pan.

6. Working in small batches, ladle the mix to the heated pan to form 4 latkes with about a 3 to 4” diameter. Fry each one on one side until golden brown, then flip and cook the other side until golden. Drain on paper towels.

7. Serve warm with generous dollops of sour cream and applesauce.

Serves 4-6

The Crown Market
2471 Albany Ave.
West Hartford, CT 06117
www.thecrownmarket.com
860.236.1965 

steveinkitchenExecutive chef, Stephen Grace is just as much an institution as The Crown Market itself.  A graduate of The Culinary School of America as well as Paul Smith’s College, Stephen has been creating dishes at The Crown for 24 years.  Running a busy kitchen, Stephen focuses on using fresh seasonal ingredients to offer his customers quality convenience cuisine made from scratch.  This particular creation, The Spiced Autumn Latke, was the winner at last year’s CT Latke Throwdown.