September 20, 2012

Oran Mor Bistro (Nantucket, MA)

Have you ever eaten a meal so spectacular that it haunted you in the most wonderful way? In 2006, I took a trip out to Nantucket, where my friend Jen H was working (rough gig, right?) We were looking for a new place to eat, and somehow we ended up at Oran Mor Bistro (run by Chef Chris Freeman and his wife Heather), where we both had the BLT Scallops dish, and quickly found ourselves muted by one of the most awesome dishes we've ever had.
It took me six years, but I found myself back on Nantucket, and I dragged ABF through the DELUGE (what is with the rain this summer!?!?) We had no reservation but it was worth taking a risk-- and we found ourselves at the bar, soaking wet but happy. The chef's wife, Heather, is also the bartender. She welcomed us warmly even though I'm sure we looked like two drowned rats, squishing step by step to the bar. Chef Chris came out a few minutes later and so kindly offered to run our wet sweaters through their dryer. He really, sincerely offered, a few times, but we thanked him and opted to warm up with wine, instead. Still, what a lovely, thoughtful offer!

We ordered a bottle of Domaine de Saint-Antoine Merlot, a lovely, full, lush red table wine from France. Nothing warms you up like a nice juicy red! This was also reasonably priced. I don't remember the exact dollar amount, but a shockingly decent deal!

We ordered the small plates as appetizers. I was determined not to get too full too soon! I ordered the chilled canteloupe soup with peekytoe crab. This came in a shallow dish and was dotted with the most fascinatingly minuscule melon balls.

I mean smaller than a pencil eraser--how did they do that? The soup was even more delicious than it looked. ABF took at least two bites of this.

ABF's appetizer: croquettes. These were sooooo good. Comfort food to the highest exponential.

My main dish was the striped bass. It was stunning and succulent. What a fabulous crust on that piece of fish! Not a bite went to waste. I even ate the mushrooms, and you know I'm still a bit scared of them! I ate Every. Bite.
The BLT scallops which I'd tasted 6 years ago were serendipitiously BACK on the menu (which changes often)... now if that's not a delicious, delicious sign... ABF ordered them. He kind of had to, really. ONE of us was getting them. Imagine the World's Best Seared Scallops placed on some bacon, lettuce and tomato risotto. YES. ABF had heard me talk about this dish for so long that I worried I might have built it up too much. Then he took his first bite and said 'Oh my God, these are the best scallops I ever had.' I KNOW THAT'S WHAT I'VE BEEN SAYING!!!

We were getting full, but every bite was as good as the last, so we forged ahead and ordered dessert. Lemon meringue tart with raspberry coulis-- yum. I love the bracing, tongue-tingling tartness of the lemon with the smooth, mellow raspberry. But once again, ABF's dish edged out mine just the slightest.

Dark Chocolate Brownie Bread Pudding, Coco Nib Croquant, Vanilla ice Cream, all warm and oozy. "Chocolate cake" just doesn't do justice to this dish. The richest, yet lightest, melt on your tongue and make your mouth happy concoction I've had in, well, maybe ever. ABF is such a sweetheart that he actually shared a bite with me. I liked my lemon meringue a lot (he's not a fan of lemon, really), but his bread pudding? Amazeballs.

Obviously, Oran Mor is a hit with people who live on Nantucket, but if you're visiting for the day, a weekend, a weekend, or heck, 4 hours, I think you should stop by and try something, anything, at Chris & Heather's lovely, welcoming, soul-and-palate-soothing spot. It's a 2 minute walk from the ferry landing and I guarantee you will relish every morsel you're lucky enough to try there. Oh, those scallops....

Oran Mor Bistro

2 South Beach Street

Nantucket, MA 02554

(508) 228-8655

September 19, 2012

Nantucket Pharmacy

It was a humid, muggy, super-sweltering summer day when ABF & I walked through Nantucket-- just a day trip during our visit to Cape Cod, Massachusetts. We'd had a delicious lunch at Arno's a few hours ago (review here), but after a few hours of wandering around, we needed a pick-us-up ASAP!

I'd noticed earlier that they have ice cream floats at Nantucket Pharmacy, a sweet little spot that does sell drugstore items, but also has a welcoming, well-worn countertop with a friendly staff that dispenses everything from breakfast sandwiches to ice cream.

Oh. And just a few clocks (which you can buy, too).

I wanted a root beer float like nobody's business, and that's what I ordered. ABF was going to have the same, but ordered a Coke float to mix it up a bit.

They were both tasty, but there is something about root beer and vanilla ice cream that just rocks my tastebuds. We both agreed it was much, much better than the Coke float.

A seat at the counter, summer in the air, ABF at my side, and a root beer float in front of me. Not a bad day at all, my friends.

Nantucket Pharmacy

45 Main Street

Nantucket , MA 02554


September 18, 2012

Arno's (Nantucket)

A short time into our day trip to Nantucket, ABF & I stopped for lunch at Arno's restaurant on Nantucket's Main street, a short walk from the Steamship Authority (where the ferry docks when you arrive). It was late afternoon so the main rush was gone, and they sat us immediately near the bar.

It was a hot, humid, super-summery August day. I started my meal with a Sea Breeze, a cocktail with champagne, grenadine, and cranberry juice (of course!) This was light, refreshing, just a touch of sweetness. Cheers!

ABF ordered the fish & chips, made with fresh haddock. This was a good-sized portion and smelled pretty amazing. He gave it two thumbs up and then some.

I also ordered haddock, but in a fish sandwich version. I haven't had a fried fish sandwich in a good ten years, and this was a great way to get back into the game.

Fresh, flaky fish, fresh lettuce, soft bun, and a deliciously zingy tartar sauce. Fantastic.

Service was very friendly, even with a big party upstairs keeping the small staff busy. They were in no rush to move us out of there, so we had a little extra time to catch our breath and cool off before heading back out into the humidity.

Arno's is on the main drag of Nantucket and a good, solid spot if you're looking for a bite!


41 Main Street

Nantucket, MA 02554

(508) 228-7001

September 17, 2012

Sundae School (Cape Cod)

ABF & I took a nice few days last month to Cape Cod, one of my happy places. In my opinion, a trip to the Cape WITHOUT a trip to Sundae School is a waste of time, gas, and LIFE. This place is the site of many a summer's night trip. Our dad would take my sister and me here after dinner, where we'd wait in line, surveying the dizzying options of homemade ice creams, toppings, and configurations!

And yet (nearly) every time, I'd settle on this: a sundae with Oreos-n-cream ice cream, marshmallow topping, hot fudge, AND their heavenly homemade whipped cream, all topped with a luscious Bing cherry.

It's been a few years since I'd visited (back in 2006 with my friend Jen), and a few things have changed-- namely the helpful young men in the parking lot doing their best to direct traffic--brilliant move! This spot could be quite tricky when it comes to getting in and out--and this absolutely made it so much easier!

While I ordered my standard order, ABF opted for a sundae as well--his with a scoop of vanilla and chocolate syrup (he's not a fudge guy) with crushed almonds (as they didn't have his beloved crushed peanuts). ABF was not as big a fan of the whipped cream (it's just not his thing) and the Bing cherry threw him for a loop, but overall he went with it. He definitely enjoyed it, though.

I think I need to bring ABF back for another visit--maybe towards the end of Sundae School's busy season. That place can get quite crowded, and I don't want anything distracting ABF from the awesome flavors!

Sundae School

381 Lower County Road


(508) 394-9122

September 05, 2012

Pinterest "Pancakes"

Are you on Pinterest? It's like a digital corkboard where you can store all sorts of ideas, projects, outfits, decorating ideas, and of course, RECIPES! I saw a few friends pin a low-carb (and gluten/grain free!) pancake recipe that sounded too good to be true, but too good not to try. These. Are. SCRUMPTIOUS.

While I found this recipe on Pinterest, it originally appeared here on I Breathe..I'm Hungry, a gorgeous & fun food blog run by Melissa S.

Cream cheese, eggs, a dash of cinnamon, and sweetener (I used a scant 1/2 teaspoon of Splenda). That's IT. I let the cream cheese come to room temperature, threw all 4 ingredients in my mini food processor, and 30 seconds later, I had batter. Very thin batter, but it smelled like the real thing!

I cooked these up 2 at a time in my nonstick pan. They browned up perfectly and smelled so good! There were pancake-sized but closer to crepe in feel.

I doubled the recipe and made half for dessert, and then cooked the rest the following morning. This time I made them pancake size AND crepe size, topping them with whipped cream (also sweetened with Splenda) and fresh nectarine slices. Oh, Summer!

Don't let the cream cheese scare you--these are not heavy, clunky, bready bits. They're light, delicious, and left me sated but not in a simple-carb stupor.

As Melissa mentions, these are not like the old, sit-in-your-stomach-food-coma-inducing pancakes (which I also have from time to time). They're like a delicious pancake/crepe hybrid. The springy, thin texture was more like a crepe to me-- and deliciously similar to the Dutch pancakes ABF & I had back at Amsterdam's Pancake Bakery (review here). That is NOT a bad thing at all-- I just wouldn't expect fluffy, pillowy, Bisquick-type pancakes when you make this. There is nothing, absolutely nothing, wrong with the taste. These are a new favorite for me, and I'm so happy Pinterest led me to Melissa's blog!

Cream Cheese Pancakes from I Breathe...I'm Hungry(check out her blog for more delicious inspiration)

Original Link HERE

For eight 6-inch pancakes/crepes

4 oz cream cheese (half a bar)

4 eggs

scant 1/2 tsp Splenda

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Put everything in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Let it rest a few minutes, or put in the fridge overnight (my next-day crepes were even better!) Cook until golden on each side--I like mine more gold than brown-- and top with syrup, fresh fruit, whatever you'd like! Makes about 8-10 pancakes/crepes.

September 03, 2012


While summer might feel over if you or your kids are back in school (haha suckers!), there are still a few more weeks, technically, to enjoy the warmer weather. A great place to try if you head out East? Claudio's in Greenport, New York. Every time ABF & I have ventured out here, Claudio's has been closed--until THIS summer! We stopped for an early dinner at this landmark location.
I started with Claudio's famous stuffed clams. These were very tasty, not too bready. I'm not a huge clam fan, but I very much enjoyed these.
ABF's starter: smoky corn & shrimp chowder. I had a bite or two-- sweet and salty summer in a bowl!
My main was the Claudio's special: succulent steak, smothered in mushrooms, with a sumptuous twice-baked potato. The potato was so velvety and perfect on that warm but rainy day. Oh, my taste buds were so happy!
ABF's dish-- lemony linguine with wilted spinach and bits of tender seafood.
For dessert, ABF ordered the brownie ice cream sundae-- one of his favorite things in the world. This was good, but didn't wow me like MY dessert, which was...
a lemon bar! Yes, a lemon bar served WARM. At first I was a bit confused. Warm? That sounds kind of...yuck. IT IS NOT. It was buttery, melt-in-my-mouth, lush and lovely lemon. I may never eat a cold lemon bar again. (just kidding--I'll have warm AND cold!!)
With an impressive history and long line of legendary service under its belt, Claudio's is a famous and satisfying stop if you're out on the far east end of Long Island. Enjoy!

111 Main Street

Greenport, NY 11944

(631) 477-0627

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