Holiday In Review, Food Edition

As I mentioned earlier, it was nice having parents and sister for the holidays. The three weeks of cleaning and maintenance before they arrived were a bit frantic, though. And my fridge, freezer, and pantry are pretty darn stocked for a while; I kept telling them that if they didn’t eat a lot, I wouldn’t have to shop until Valentine’s Day.

Still, even with the place stocked up, we made some outings, in which we discovered such things as Envy apples (tasty, long shelf life, doesn’t brown when left out), Robata Grill Japanese restaurant in Carmel (terrific karaage, and how can you go wrong at a place that sells baconmaki appetizers?), and something I can’t link to, the Stonemill Kitchens Pretzel Bread Ring, which appears to be a Safeway-only item so exclusive that Stonemill’s web site doesn’t acknowledge it yet. And every time I buy one, the clerk is shocked that the store has such an item.

Also, not a new discovery, but we recommend Jamie Oliver’s Beef and Guinness Stew with Dumplings, although you probably want to increase the quantity on the stew; the dumplings absorb a lot of liquid. Also Vicolo Corn Meal Pizza Crusts, which I stocked up on for quick dinners.