Thursday, June 24, 2010

Al Dente

Do you ever just wish life would slow down, that it would just stop for a second so that you can take in what's going on around you? That's how I felt all day. So many things happening at one time make me want to capture every second of it. I only have five days left with my class at school and I get more and more sad as I near the end. My party on Saturday is coming together, but I still have not one thing packed for Italy ;) Oh well, one step at a time I guess. I want to make sure I really enjoy Saturday first. Not sure how I feel about the fact that the party is all about my fiance and I. I am nervous about the attention being on us the whole time- just not used to that :)

Work was quick today because I took a half day to get to some appointments I had made. Before it was time to pick up the kiddies I had another juicy peach and organic yogurt from TJ's for breakfast.

Lunch was another organic mac-n-cheese bowl with carrots on the side.

I left work at 12p.m. so that I could get some errands done and I had a nail appointment. After I got my nails done, Derek picked me up and we headed down to Piscataway, NJ to the place where he bought my engagement ring so that we could get it resized and cleaned. The ring has been a bit big for the last few months but we just have not had the chance to make the trip to get it fixed. With the party Saturday and our engagement photo shoot coming up in Italy, we thought it would be smart to make fixing the ring a priority. On our way there I had an apricot.

My uncle owns and is the head chef at a restaurant in Piscataway called Al Dente. My uncle is the best chef I know! So since we were in town we could not leave without grabbing a quick bite after my ring was done.

Finished nails and ring tightened...

Whenever we go to my uncle's restaurant he always sends out appetizers for us to try without us even ordering them. So my the time your entree comes... your stuffed!

Last night I started with a piece of very crunchy bread dipped in olive oil, balsamic, and salt. I was starving at the point!

The first thing my uncle sent us out to try was pan-fried shrimp stuffed with crab meat with arugala, over a lobster creme sauce. I had one. This was amazing. Tasted like shrimp wrapped in a crab cake.

Next, he sent out balsamic glazed figs over procuitto with shaved parm cheese on top. This was one of those savory/sweet dishes. The cheese was my favorite part.

Then, if all that wasn't enough already, he sent out a very interesting risotto. This risotto had fresh strawberries and marscopone (prob spelled wrong) cheese in it. It was also a very interesting savory and sweet combo. I would have never thought to put strawberries in risotto. But it was fabulous. Even Derek was blown away and he is not a fan of fruit in his meals.

Luckily I know how my uncle is and I now know to pace myself when I come to his restaurant. I only eat a very small portion of every dish he sends out. It takes a lot of will power, but it needs to be done.

Next was a citrus salad. This was baby mixed greens, with toasted pistachios, orange wedges, goat cheese, and beets, all tossed in a citrus vinaigrette. It was extremely refreshing.

Then, finally, I received the main course in which I ordered. Grouper over swiss chard and baked beans, and topped with a cherry tomato and onion straw salad. This was delicious and light, the beans had this smoky flavor that complimented the fish perfectly. I couldn't finish it though. Barely, made a dent actually.

Today will be another busy day of work, dinner out with coworkers, and finishing the favors for the party with my sisters. AHHH! All good things though. Have a happy Thursday!


Matt said...

Where are you going in Italy?

Cassie said...

We rented a villa in Tuscany. There are 14 of us going.. my family, my fiance and I. We have planned day trips including Rome, Florence, Lucca, Cinque Terre, etc. But our home base will be Tuscany ;)

Kelsey said...

i never can order appetizers, they always spoil my appetite- thats really funny how he orders them before u can even say anything hehe ;)

ur nails look gorgeous!! <3

Lisa (bakebikeblog) said...

I just know you will have a brilliant time at your party! I was a little nervous about the same thing at our wedding - but then I realised that everyone there were our closest friends and family and I had no need to worry! It was, to this day, the best day of my life! Such a party and so much fun!

amanda said...

first thing first, your nails look so pretty with that rock hanging out on your finger! what a nice image to look down at, eh?

yummm, those shrimps look divine!

Cassie said...

Thanks Kelsey and Amanda!

Lisa- you are so right! These people are my closest friends and family! I am excited :)