Sunday, January 29, 2012

January Books & Eats

Read this month: The Nobodies Album, The Alchemist, The Picture of Dorian Gray, A Thousand Lives: The Untold Story of Hope, Deception and Survival at Jonestown.

And it was a good month for dining adventures...

Traditional Platter at Lebanese Taverna, with yogurt salad subbing for the baba ghanoush. I've gotten this many times... it would be on my Last Meal Request list, if I ever found myself on Death Row. Between us, though, I'd rather just drive to Annapolis.

Cute little individual tiny Brie cheeses from Trader Joe's. These were supposed to be for kids' lunches, but they're alarmingly addictive and I ended up eating four out of the five-pack. In three days.

Chirashi-zushi from Ichiban in Bowie. Sad to say, I've been so spoiled by delicious chirashi that my reaction to this was, "seriously?" I found the assortment disappointing. Still, one could certainly do worse.

The Mitsitam Cafe at the Museum of the American Indian in D.C. offers Native American food and food made with seasonal ingredients used by the indigenous people of North and South America. I'd been eager to go to this place for years-- where else can you get Native American food, after all? This is a "razor clam and pumpkin pie with green onion butter," and it was delicious. I also got to try the "huckleberry fritters with wildflower honey and powdered sugar," which were essentially upscale blueberry pancakes. But tasty!

An original gyro and seasoned fries from Marathon Deli in College Park. I was shamed into going there by friends who couldn't believe I call myself an alumna of UMCP and had never tried it, and I understand why. It was a great gyro.

Hot stone bibimbap from Spa World in Centreville, VA. Not the best bibimbap I've ever had, but good.

Fried dates wrapped in bacon from Jaleo in Bethesda. This was a D.C. Restaurant Week adventure. They were good, but I have to admit my husband's version is better. Sorry Jaleo, but your food was still very much worth the trip.

Also from Jaleo: chocolate mousse topped with chocolate ganache, hazelnut ice cream and glazed hazelnuts. This was amazing. Worth the visit for this alone.

Yes, a Starbucks beverage... this is an off-the-menu vanilla bean Frappuccino with caramel swirls. Maybe I'm late to this party, but I saw someone get one a few weeks ago and had to quiz the baristas to figure out what it was. I really liked it-- very vanilla-milkshake-like-- but I'll probably wait until summer to get another one.

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