Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Tale of Two Weekends

Got up on Saturday expecting great things. It was just about a week or two to go before the opening and we had a yard of things to get finished. It seemed like we were on our way when our friend Bo offered to have Jack come over to play with his son Paolo. He would let them play on the computer, go to the playground for outside fun, have lunch (mac and cheese) and maybe watch a movie. Sounds like a great plan and that would allow Jill and I to go buy shelf brackets that we needed and maybe go to J & R for a printer.

Well our luck must have stayed home as we started at Home Depot, wound up going to two other places in Brooklyn before heading to mid-town Manhattan to go to Vercisi Hardware, a store I worked at during and after college. We liked a bracket at our second spot but they didn't have enough and the third we thought we could do better. Vercesi had a smaller selection than I remembered or they were out. We then went to Simon's on 3rd and 30, nice stuff, really nice stuff but expensive and you have to special order. We wound up 4 hours later at Ikea and setttled for brakets that were okay.

Next day I went to Home Depot with Paul, my friend who is building the cabinets and found brackets I really liked. Did Jill and I miss them or did someone put them out that night? Short story long is that it seemed like such a waste of a day, with time ticking and I didn't appreciate that.

Weird thing is the next day was the complete opposite. I couldn't sleep but didn't feel tired so at 4:00 I took a shower, drank coffee and cleaned the first 2 flours of our house. I then went to the Coop to do our grocery shopping. After putting the groceries away I made a pot of Marinara for that night, ordered a piece of equipment on line (infrared burner) answered emails and went to J & R. We bought a printer for the store, a vacuum cleaner and a new portable dvd player for Jack when he is in the store. All of this by noon that day. Wow.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

5 Year Old Foodie, Well Maybe

I've spent almost all of my waking time the last 6 or so years with my focus on food. I've learned a lot. I'm opening a bakery. With that said I'd really like to be able to say I'm the dad of a 5 year old foodie. Sometimes when I hear Jack talk in a really expressive, excited and knowledgeable way about how great the Grilled Cheese Panini and Fries at Bar Toto is (who wouldn't), I think my son is on his way. Or how he savors a good dark chocolate, like the Jacques Torres Easter Bunny we bought him. Jill and I had to fight him for some as he gobbled down the ears. Or the way he savors one of my desserts or daddy mac.

At the same time he can talk obsessively about Sour Punch, Mike and Ike, Airheads, Coco Puffs, Bubbilcious gum, Capri Sun (they have one of his favorite websites with much cooler games than the health food product websites, must be the budget), and Kraft Mac an Cheese Spirals. After his performance with the Jumpin Tomatoes at BAX he felt like the deserved a special snack. His choice...Doritos. The first place we went into didn't have nacho flavor. The next one had a bag big enough for family of 4 or one really big nacho eating pig. He cried when I didn't let him have that one, forgetting that we agreed on a single serving size bag. We comprised on the bag that I think is 4 ounces. He got his in a bowl, I took a few for good measure and it was put away for another day. No rush though as it has enough chemicals in it to last at least until the next lunar eclipse.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Meet Mr. Bisky at Little Buddy

Meet Jill's alter ego Mr. Bisky or is he just a misunderstood cookie character? Come to Little Buddy Biscuit Company's new bakery slated to open Wednesday, July 29th (stay tuned for the real date) and take home your own Mr. Bisky. Great menu of baked goods in store (soon to be revealed)... we've ordered the ice cream and tea leaves, tomorrow the coffee. The store renovation looks unbelievable! I will be writing an article about the renovation and highlighting the great contractors I hired in an upcoming blog (with photos). I have my opening day staff which you will hear more about and Jill has taken her vacation to allow her to be there the first week. Come join us!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Kevin Ryan Update

Photographer Kevin Ryan has updated his portfolio of food photography

Butternut Squash Ravioli with Avocado Cream Sauce

I once had a pasta dish in an Italian restaurant that had an avocado sauce on it that was delicious and surprising. After a couple of attempts I finally came up with my own version that was quite impressive. I made it up on the spot and did not write it down so the recipe below is from memory and might need a tweak. The sauce is a guilty and fatty pleasure as it has heavy cream, extra-virgin olive oil and goat's cheese in addition to the avocado so enjoy but go for a walk after dinner. When I made it I had sauce leftover that used to make a great dressing for a crab meat salad sandwich (on a brioche roll with chopped escarole and red onion slice).

The avocado and the butternut squash ravioli was a great combination, I would guess a ravioli with mushroom filling could be good, lobster would be nice, maybe a mozzarella and sun-dried tomato too. I served the ravioli with steamed baby zucchini to highlight both winter and summer squash together.

Butternut Squash Ravioli with Avocado Cream Sauce

2 or so tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium cloves of garlic, minced
8 ounces of heavy cream
2 ripe avocados
Fresh lemon juice
4 ounces of goat cheese, broken up or mashed with a fork
2 tomatoes, seeded, peeled and coarsely chopped

  1. Heat olive oil in sauce pan on medium heat. Add minced garlic, stir and cook until garlic is fragant and golden brown about 30 seconds.
  2. Add heavy cream, stir and simmer for a few minutes.
  3. Meanwhile cut avocados, scoop out of shell and place in a bowl. Mash avocados and sprinkle with lemon juice to keep avocado from turning brown.
  4. Stir in goat cheese and tomato and simmer for a few minutes longer.
  5. Cook raviolis as per manufacturers direction. Place raviolis in pasta dish and pour sauce over and serve.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Coffee, tea and ice cream

We're getting really excited as our store is shaping up and is looking fantastic and we still hope to be open before August. I am about to order our tea and coffee selection and was wondering if anyone would like to make suggestions about their preferences (comment below or email groovalicious@verizon.net). Our vendors are Serendipitea and Equal Exchange, both organic and free trade. For teas we will have 2-3 selections of black tea, 2-3 selections of green and white tea, chai and tisane's (herbal) so if you have a fave let me know. Coffee we'll have house blend's of a dark roast and a medium roast, esspresso and de-caf.

Here are the winning selections of ice cream and sorbet that will be the opening day menu. This is based on feedback, Little Buddy staff choices and input from Jane's icecream.

Ice Cream
Killer Chocolate
Cappuccino Kahlua Calypso
Peanut Butter Fudge
Cookies and Creme
Mint Chip
Coconut Almond Joy