Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Michy's and Miami Spice

Michy's is a place here in Miami that has gotten fabulous buzz over the last couple of years. And shame on me for not getting there earlier, but finally some good stuff came together and I was able to get there with Gary...and four other women. Lucky Gary, that's all I have to say. But he didn't flinch--because, after all, food was involved...and not just any food, Michy's food.

We are lucky to have "Miami Spice" going on right now. At Michy's that means a three course meal for $36, truly a deal in this year of rising food prices. We got to choose from three appetizers (pork belly, beet salad or carpaccio), three entrees (cobia, papardelle carbonara or veal scaloppine) and three desserts (chocolate panna cotta, cobber or red velvet cake). Among the six of us, we got tastes of all appetizers, two entrees (no one went for the cobia) and all the desserts. Plus the early arrivers ordered rock lobster ravioli (incredible) and the table shared the polenta ("Haunting," according to Laura, who took the lead in getting us together) with some bacon, rosemary and an egg cracked right into it...here's that photo. We dug in a bit too quickly, but I got a photo of the end. Which about sums it up. Yum.I tackled the pork belly with kohlrabi slaw (yes, they spelled it wrong on the menu...sorry. Had to say it. But every menu needs an editor. Michy's isn't unique)...absolutely the best I've ever had. The slaw was a great balance to the very rich piece of pork belly. And while it's just this little square, that is more than enough...

Most of us got the pappardelle with St. Andre Cheese, roasted tomatoes (I think they were roasted grape tomatoes. Whatever, they were perfect) and Kentucky ham instead of prosciutto. It was rich. The pasta was just right...And I wish I could say I left a bite or two, but...I can't.

I got cobbler with a delicious scoop of ice cream. I believe mine was all peach--Michy's uses the best of what's in season for the cobbler. The chocolate panna cotta was beautifully done, not so much gelatin that you could detect it and the chocolate giving the whole thing a beautifully velvety texture. The red velvet cake lived up to its reputation: dark red, moist cake, creamy cheesecake frosting sprinkled with red sugar crystals, which gave just the right touch of crunch to each bite. It's all served with a shot of ice cold milk: adorable.

It was a wonderful night. I don't recall such great service, either, in a long time. Professional, unobtrusive and a team effort. Michy's really takes care of its guests. As the night went on, the crowd just swelled, with plenty of people waiting at the bar for tables--and it looked like it would go on well into the night. A great welcoming atmosphere, with some dressed to the nines and others in jeans and crocs...and everyone welcome.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

What $25 can do...

If any of you followed up on my Lori Hall Steele post and did, indeed donate at the website, I wanted to pass on the news that I got today. Her mortgage is taken care of. She can stay in her house and focus on getting better. All those $5, $10, $15 checks? The $25 and more from those of you who were able?

You did that. YOU did it.

Thanks on Lori's behalf.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Eggs, Beautiful Eggs.

Some days are just great, aren't they? Yesterday was one of those days. I had the great good fortune of visiting Margie at Bee Heaven Farm. Margie has been doing organic farming for a while now--her farm is peaceful, beautiful...did I mention peaceful?

At any rate, I wanted to know about her eggs. She has a big flock of hens, a few roosters (who continuously make themselves known, just as you might imagine they would. That peaceful is a certain kind of peaceful punctuated by the cockadoodle-dos of roosters) and lots of fruit plants.

In South Florida, the planting season is just starting, but the hens, they barely ever quit (although I did learn they don't like to lay when they molt. There. Now you've learned one new fact for the day).

Margie's hens are free-range, although that is not what you might imagine, what with all the alligators and various and sundry predators in the area. You cannot just let the hens wander unless you want them to also disappear as dinner for something else. So there are these clever bottomless pens that get hand-wheeled from patch of fresh grass to patch of fresh grass as needed. The grass, the dirt, the bugs--all organic. The hens peck the grass down to the dirt (I kid you not. We don't need Roundup in this world. We need more hens).

As we left, Margie kindly pressed a 9-pack of fresh eggs into my hands. As far as I was concerned, she was giving us a certain amount of gold. I couldn't wait to wake up for eggs for breakfast this morning.

You know how they say a fresh egg's yolk really "stands up?" They aren't kidding, and I think I've captured that here...

Breakfast. As I left Bee Heaven, Margie assured me she was ruining me for store-bought eggs for good. I assure you, she was right.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Want to feel better about the world? Click below to donate.

Yes, I know this is a food blog--and normally you'd be checking in here to read about my adventures with chocolate malted chunk cookies (or something like that from Dorie)--not to worry, the cookies are coming.

I'm taking just a moment to ask anyone reading to donate $5 (more if you can manage) to a fellow writer, Lori Hall Steele. She has been incapacitated--and unable to work--by ALS. Lou Gehrig's disease. And it all happened in about one year's time. Local fundraisers have been done (she's in Traverse City Michigan) but just last week we got word that she was on the verge of losing her house.

Asking for $5 donations from everyone and anyone has been our way ("We" are all writer friends of hers) of trying to keep her in the house until she gets some resolutions. You can donate instantly on paypal here at Lori Hall Steele Fundraising Blog that's been set up to help. Please read her Washington Post Essay, too, written, I think, before she knew quite what she was in for.

C'mon. $5. A cup of Starbuck's. A pound or two of butter for baking. YOu might be able to find $5 in change in your car if you're like me...Lori can use the change. Click on over.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Yet another Wednesday for Tuesday with Dorie..

I baked last night, I swear I did! This week we did Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies with Chocolate chips...it's just that I didn't have even a few words of posting in me..

Maybe it's because I was experimenting with the Million Dollar Cookie, but I kind of didn't go crazy for the peanut butter side of this...But...I've got a mountain of these cookies...
And they taste pretty darn good with a great cup of coffee (next week: cookies with malted milk balls in them!!! Can't wait.)