Oh my gosh: just about all the food we had on our honeymoon! Probably the mushroom pastry and crab risotto cake we had our first night there and our AMAZING dinner the night before we left (everything, too much to list). We still will randomly just look at each other and go "I want to go back just to eat!"
Anyone else ever had a dish that completely stuck in your memory until you decided to try to make it yourself?
Yep, a bazillion years ago I was being entertained by a vendor at a very nice restaurant in NYC. Its my policy to always try the special, even if its not something I'd usually order, and this time is was mussels poached in a white wine saffron garlic broth. Served with a couple slices of grilled crostini, it couldn't be simpler or more delicious! I ran the risk of complete embarrassment by ordering it again for dessert, though a half portion. The ONLY time in my life I've ordered an entree twice.
Ever since then if there was anything even remotely like the dish on a menu I ordered it... and was continually let down.
A few years later I was touring around Spain and stopped into a grocery store - another policy I have when traveling in a foreign country, I love to wander around grocery stores if the opportunity presents itself.
I happened down the spice and baking isle and was startled by the HUGE range of saffrons and how cheap it was. I instantly recalled the mussels and bought an armful of saffron determined to finally make it for myself.
I did with moderate results a few times but nothing like I recalled.
Then I discovered gardening and that growing garlic is easy. I figured a ha! Perhaps great garlic is the secret! So I grew my own, waited a year patiently to try, and it turns out, yes great garlic and *poaching* the mussels is the secret.
I have now mastered the nummiest dish I've ever had. That and the greatest horse I've ever known is standing in my paddock. I can truly die happy.
replace the ginger for saffron and this is pretty much it. I also learned with good home grown garlic, its extra oily and sticky, I find mincing and crushing isn't nearly as good as using a very small mandolin and shaving the garlic. Even for the bread.... yummmmmmmmmmm.