Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Zombie Easter Bunny

Like any good geek, I enjoy perusing the ThinkGeek website. I could probably go to any page on that site and find something I want. (And any non-food website that has a category for bacon is fine by me.) Every April 1st, ThinkGeek comes up with a bunch of stuff that seems real enough, or at least, should be.

Enter this year's batch of April Fool's Day objects. I personally think the Star Wars lightsaber popsicle molds should be real. And when a friend mentioned wanting to buy one of these zombie Easter bunnies for another friend, I knew I could at least make that one happen.

I found a bunny mold that is, I think, even better than the original because he's holding a brain (ok, ok, an egg, but it works so well as a brain!). I colored white chocolate with gel food coloring to get that great zombie green tint and away we went! I had bought a bag of Nerds jelly beans to snack on and was pleasantly surprised to find that the pink ones looked a little bit like brains and would fit in the bunny's basket.

I don't make my own chocolates much, but when I do, I love putting a fun twist on it. Do you make your own chocolates?

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Saus, Boston

I've been following the saga of Saus for months now, and when the little frites-shop-that-could opened about a month ago, I was ready and raring to try them out. Of course, I couldn't actually make it downtown for a bite until this past week, and I'm kinda kicking myself that I didn't get down there sooner. Simply put, I'm in love.

Saus, purveyor of Belgian-style fries and waffles, has been the talk of the Boston food blogger world all month, and I'm sure I'm just adding one more positive review to the bunch. From it's clean atmosphere, dusted with old-school European comics, to its alluring menu of dipping sauces (both savory, for the fries, and sweet, for the waffles), this place is very promising. Hopefully their location (near Faneuil Hall) and their late hours (2am on weekends) will lead to lots of success.

Now on to the actual meal. I went with a friend, and we shared a cone of fries and an order of poutine for dinner. We chose the Green Monster (habanero, jalapeno, cilantro, garlic) and the Bacon Parm (um, just what it sounds like) for dipping, and after listening to us vacillate over choices (and talking to him about my chicken tortilla soup), Chin (one of the owners) brought us some samples of the Cheddar Duval (cheddar and Belgian ale), Vampire Slayer (garlic, garlic, garlic), and You're My Boy, Bleu! (bleu cheese) to try as well. Each sauce was completely unique, and the ingredients used are clearly of the highest quality. The Green Monster was just spicy enough and really bright from the fresh ingredients (I used the leftovers the next day as salad dressing, and now I'm wishing I had a bottle of the stuff in my fridge). The Cheddar Duval was just like fondue, and the beer taste was pronounced but not overwhelming. I'm not a fan of bleu cheese, but they get points for the name on that one. Big points for the Vampire Slayer title as well, and the well-rounded flavor of roasted garlic made that one a winner (although you have to make sure that the people you're with eat it as well). And Bacon Parm? Magic. The shop also makes their own ketchup and mayo from scratch.

Our order of poutine was fantastic, too, and since I've never had it in Montreal, I can't comment on how faithful it is. My friend, however, commented that it was better than any she'd had in Canada, so I'm guessing Saus is holding their own on poutine. Chin suggested dipping the poutine in the Cheddar Duval sauce for another added level of deliciousness, and man was he right.

We waited a little while before ordering a waffle to share. The authentic Liege waffles are made with pearl sugar and are smallish but dense and more than enough, crispy on the outside and soft in the middle. We chose the lemon cream (like a thick and creamy limoncello) and the salted caramel (which I, no joke, was scrapping out of the dipping cup with my fingers at the end of the meal). Saus also makes their own Nutella (!).

All I can say is that I'm glad that it's a hassle for me to get to Saus. If I lived or worked nearby, I would easily be another 100 pounds heavier, because I would eat there all the time. Chin, I'm only partially kidding about moving in...

(Also, could I have used more parenthesis in this post? (Probably.))

Saus on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

3 Scoops, Brighton

Like I've said, I'm a true Boston girl, which includes loving ice cream year-round. So when I heard about an ice cream shop right in Brighton that was seasonal (all the other seasonal shops I know are way out in the 'burbs), I was surprised. Surely Brighton center could sustain a year-round need for ice cream, right? Also, the fact that 3 Scoops escaped my attention during the years when I lived just up the street astounds me.

Of course, when I was invited to try 3 Scoops, which has just opened for their season, I was happy to oblige. When I walked in, there was just one customer and Raul, the scooper, and as I sampled a variety of flavors, the three of us got into a deep and meaningful conversation about graduate school and, basically, how to do something you love with your life. I'm not sure I got any answers out of the conversation, but I'm pretty sure Raul and I managed to help out the customer a bit. This sort of conversation continued throughout the hour or so that I hung out in the shop, and the environment seems very welcoming to sitting and chatting, much like a coffee shop.

Raul happily plied me with tastes of lots of flavors, including a black raspberry swirl that was sweet and tart and pretty near perfect. Coconut tasted like the real thing, and the mud pie was filled with tasty chunks of chocolate and cookies. My favorite was the mint chip (I'm a sucker for mint ice cream of any ilk), which tasted more like a peppermint patty than other mint chips I've had in the past. Most of the ice cream comes from Coop's, which many people may recognize as Herrell's. Other flavors, especially the special diet flavors - vegan, allergen-free - are made by Raul, who learned to make ice cream while living in Paris.

Raul asked if he could make me a sundae or a frappe, and then he said the magic words: ice cream sandwich with fresh chocolate chip cookies. He started packing more mint chip (my choice) onto a cookie that was about the size of my hand (fingers spread!), then he pushed another cookie on top. This thing was seriously huge, and it would have taken two hungry people to finish it off. The ice cream sandwich is not technically on the menu, but here's hoping that they'll put it on there soon (in two sizes - one cookie or two - preferably).

Of course, 3 Scoops is new to me, although I've spent plenty of time wandering around Brighton Center in the past. I am unclear whether there is new ownership or a change in direction for the store, because none of the Yelp (etc) reviews I read online of the place seem to jive with what I saw. While chatting with Raul, he mentioned that they are discussing whether to do away with the seasonal thing all together, which indicates that the store is trying new things.

As I was driving away, I noticed a new ice cream shop (actually new, as opposed to new for the year), Abbott's, with a big misleading sign that read "Since 1902". I would have stopped in if I had not been full of the previously mention ice cream sandwich. I haven't tried Abbott's custard before, but as far as Brighton Center goes, I'm rooting for 3 Scoops, which serves locally-made ice cream, as opposed to a chain from New York.

Full Disclosure note: The ice cream was provided to me for free by 3 Scoops.

3 Scoops on Urbanspoon