Holiday Eating and Dining Plans for 2009
Posted by Degan on January 5th, 2009
The theme for 2008 was not ever being home and a huge part of that (a sub theme if you will) included some spectacularly good eating out. I started this post by making a list of the top meals of 2008 but so many of them happened in the last week of the year that it made me seem like I just had a terrible memory.
There were a couple of fantastic meals at Boneta (easily my new favorite restaurant of the year if you don’t count Tailor in New York City) and several from old favorites Dona Cata, Hapa, Salt and Medina, but it’s been this holiday time that has taken the year of good eating to possibly unbeatable proportions.
Christmas eve started with a spread for some friends; Susie and I made homemade caramel, fudge and cookies, chicken livers marinated and grilled with red onion, Parkerhouse rolls to wrap around cold cuts, homemade crackers to go with a selection of cheeses, cherry tomatoes stuffed with feta, carrot soup and mulled wine kept warm on the stove.
Christmas day was a traditional English dinner at my dad’s place with a roast turkey, Waldorf salad, mashed yams, roast potatoes and parsnips, flaming figgy pudding and lots and lots of wine.
Later Boris and Rachael had a Christmas open house at his parent’s place on Bowen Island. There was homemade creton on homemade soda bread, Czechoslovakian cabbage soup, and then thanks to an underweight fawn that had frozen to death in the backyard, 4 courses of venison. Steaks sauteed rare with grapeseed oil and salt and pepper, heart cooked with a bit of garlic and served on a cracker, roast with dried apricots, cranberries and prunes, garlic mayo and wine (among other things, I’m sure), followed up with venison shank cooked to perfection in the aforementioned cabbage soup. It was a meal that I am not likely to ever have again, and it was incredible. Special thanks go to James for his suburb butchering and cooking skills and to Boris for hosting and delicious cooking as well.
Another evening, some friends and I made gargantuan, decadent tourtières from the Au Pied de Cochon cookbook and it seemed like even before I had finished digesting it, we tucked in to the aforementioned Phnom Pehn eating extravaganza.
For New Years Eve I ate at Campagnolo restaurant (I’ll be putting a review up on Foodists soon) and feasted on seared tuna, fried chickpeas, roast pork and fagioli beans with cipolline onions. Just incredible.
Even the non-feast days had a ridiculous amount of decadent eating. There was bread pudding with arugula and gruyere for breakfast one day and seafood towers and steak lunches for lunch on another. Travis made his traditional broiled shrimp with garlic and scallions at some point between Christmas and New Year’s and later in the evening on New Year’s Eve made good luck black-eye pea and ham soup.
I somehow managed to not gain any wait through all of this, but only because all of my muscles must have atrophied. I don’t intend to be out of the house quite so much in 2009 – I want to do a lot more cooking for one thing – but this is the short list of places I want to eat at this year:
UPDATE: And now I’ve just made plans to eat at DB Bistro Moderne, Michi Sushi and Gastropod, so it looks like this list will not be too hard to get through.