Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Cranberry and Pistachio Biscotti

Wanted to do something for my colleagues for Christmas and decided to bake something... and picked this recipe for Cranberry & Pistachio Biscotti.

I tried a Martha Stewart recipe some years back that wasn't very successful but this one turned out really well! Pretty easy too! The thing that took me a long time to do was shelling the pistachios - yes, I'm told you can buy them shelled :P

Don't they look really Christmasy? And the fact that it all disappeared in 2 hours, I'm guessing means that it tastes pretty good too...

This is my last post for this year so Merry Christmas and Happy New Year everyone!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Pietrasanta - The Italian Restaurant

Was Meip’s birthday and she chose this place for dinner – we were at the restaurant next door (Cicada) for my birthday lunch two months before.

The meal started off with freshly baked bread –

It was served warm and was pretty yummy!

G & X wanted to order some starters and ordered the Four Cheeses Pizza $17.90++ -

I was convinced it would end up coming with the main courses (I mean, pizza does take a while in the oven) but it did come as a starter. I love cheese pizzas and this one was not bad, with a thin crust too. But didn’t want to eat too much and leave less space for other food :D

Another starter that we ordered was the Sauteed Clams $25.90++ -

While reading other reviews on this place, I read that many people ordered the Black Mussels for $18. Ok, so what we ordered wasn’t mussels, but its quite a bit more expensive… Hmm, not much impression of it but the price puts me off (specifically in comparison to the mussels).

The birthday girl wanted to try the Escagots $13.90++ so we did...

It was served shell-less, in a tomato stew. It was ok I guess, I’m not a real fan of escargots (i.e. snails). I’m surprised by how many there were in one serving. Ok, this dish is good value… if you like snails :D

For my main course, I decided to be adventurous and order something completely different from what I would normally order – Maccheroni Verdi $16.90++ :

It’s supposed to be sheets of pasta with a white wine meat sauce. I checked and it turns out that verdi means green – for the green pasta. The minced meat kinda tasted like spam (or at least what I imagine spam would taste like). It had this cheap, artificial taste about it. Looks good, but it was quite a disappointment… and yet more reason for me not to be too adventurous when it comes to ordering.

Also tried a bit of the Ravioli Spinaci $17.90++ :

It was ravioli stuffed with ricotta and spinach, served with a butter and sage sauce. It wasn’t too bad, but I just never quite feel that Ravioli is worth it – that price for a few pieces?? That said, it’s normally a filling meal despite it’s seemingly small portion. A great vegetarian option!

For desserts, I tried the Melting Chocolate Cake $10.90++ -

It was not too bad, baked to pretty much perfection. Definitely one to share.

Despite the many reviews I read with bad service, our experience was pretty ok. Love the atmosphere – very rustic and homely. A bit of hit and miss with food – some dishes are quite good and reasonably priced, but some are just crap and expensive. Stick with the safe bets I reckon.

Hmm, turns out that this place is open by the same people who opened the cheap pizza place near Holland V, that has since closed down.

Pietrasanta – The Italian Restauran
5B Portsdown Road
#01-03 S139311
Tel : 6479 9521

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Shokudo Japanese Pasta & Pizza (Citylink Mall)

Came here for dinner one evening – I’ve tried the Shokudo at Raffles City before and was annoyed by how long the queue was and how bad the crowd control was inside the restaurant. This outlet one was pretty quiet, and food looked different from the main branch so I figured it was worth a try.

I had the Salmon Butter Yaki with Linguine $15.80++ :

The salmon was actually not half bad, and a pretty decent portion of pasta especially since for me :)

Tried a bit of the Hakodate Seafood Pizza $12.80++ :

Hmm, the super thin crust bothers me – something with such thin crust can hardly be called a pizza. But perfect for those with petite appetites!

Saw the Ice Cream Waffle $5.80++ on the menu and just had to have it. But I’m not a fan of green tea ice cream so I asked the manager if I could have it with another flavour of ice cream. Her reply was that the waffle goes best with the green tea ice cream…

Which mean that they didn’t have any other flavours! And it was pretty yucks, to me at least. Still do not like green tea ice cream in anyway… not the taste, not the texture, nothing at all. It’s probably just me, this green tea ice cream could actually be not half bad.

The food here is ok, as long as you keep your expectations low (which I did). Service here was pretty spotty. We had some trouble getting the attention of wait staff when we wanted to order dessert and get the bill, but the service was good, once we got their attention. Well, except for that stupid recommendation to have green tea ice cream…

Shokudo Japanese Pasta & Pizza (Citylink Mall)
1 Raffles Link
#B1-23 Citylink Mall
Tel: 6341 9542