Grilled Romaine Salad

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

My family had some 4th of July weekend! We had fabulous dinners starting at the ever popular Langosta Lounge on Thursday. It was fabulous as always. My mom, sister, and I all got a Mahi Mahi special that was incredible! My dad ordered the baby back ribs that came with the best sweet potato fries I have ever had in my life!

On Friday, we had to try out The Trinity and the Pope, which is a new restaurant in Asbury that is owned by the same owner as Langosta (Marilyn Schlossbach). While the cuisine was a bit different than we're used to (Creole/Louisiana-style), it was out of this world! We were immediately given some spicy kettle chips with a Remoulade sauce. I have never tasted anything like it! We all went crazy over it! My dad ordered a short rib in puff pastry appetizer that we all had to try... It was so rich and decadent. I would have ordered it as a main meal! I had the barbecue shrimp with jalepeno andouille grits as my entree. The spice and flavor was incredible! Everybody was very pleased with their meals! Marilyn has done it again... made my very picky family extremely happy with a unique dining experience!

On Sunday night, I cooked for a my family. I made crab cakes yet again, as requested from the rest of the group. I tripled the recipe for Ellie Krieger's crab cakes and made a few small changes. I sauteed the red pepper and green onion before adding it to the mix. I also mixed in whole wheat bread crumbs and then coated the cakes in panko.

For the side-dishes, I made some sweet potato fries, corn on the cob, and a grilled romaine salad. I was inspired by a TV shoot I helped out with at Good Housekeeping featuring Guy Fieri. He grilled romaine hearts and topped it with a sauteed onion and bacon mixture and some crumbled blue cheese. It looked soo good, so I had to make my own recreation of the salad.

I started by halving 3 romaine lettuce hearts and washing them thouroughly. After patting them dry, I grilled them a few minutes per side, until they were slightly charred and wilted. I sauteed 2 large vidalia onions and spooned it on top of the romaine. I also sprinkled on some dried cranberries, gorgonzola, and topped it with a balsamic vinaigrette:

For our last day of the holiday weekend, my parents, sister, and I layed on the beach until the early hours of the evening. We didn't make it out to dinner until around 8:00. We walked on over to Stella Marina, hoping for a delicious, relaxing dinner that we usually always recieve. Unfortunately, Stella was slacking on Monday. Not sure if it was the aftermath of a crazy weekend or what, but there shouldn't be any excuse for the service that we recieved. We arrived at the restaurant and were not seated for another 20 minutes, despite the availability of tables. It took longer than usual to recieve our bottle of wine. The waitress brought over some bread, which we were delighted to see because we were starving. However, upon first bite we realized the bread was unebile..stale and clearly very old. We kindly asked our waitress if there was any fresher bread available, but she regrettably told us they ran out from the weekend (couldn't they have at least revived a loaf by popping it into the oven?!). We got over it quickly and anxiously awaited our salad and vegetable appetizers. Well, those never came. We were waiting over an hour before we had to complain and beg for an explanation for the ridiculously long wait. The manager came over and said that the salads would probably not be out any time soon because of a back up in the kitchen. We asked for the check, paid for our wine, and left. Stella Marina is off our list of favorite restaurants for a while. Unfortunately, because I have always enjoyed it there. Our night ended with pizza on the boardwalk and a late night walk home...


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