Akara (African Black-Eyed Pea Fritters)

by Angela on June 1, 2014

in Lagniappe

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Dubin, Ireland: Stay

by Angela on June 1, 2014

in Lagniappe

 

Stay

We stayed at the Trinity Capital Hotel because it was relatively cheap for a “4-star” hotel. 4-star is generous unless you upgrade to the “Executive King” (aka

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the Tara Rooms). They’re more than worth the extra 20EUR per night as they’re superior to the regular King rooms in every way (sqft, air conditioning, couches, dual sinks, bath, etc.) The hotel decor is very trendy and generally playful.

 

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Dublin, Ireland: Snapshot

by Angela on May 29, 2014

in Travel

In late January/early February we traveled to Dublin so I could speak at a conference. While we were there, we decided to stay a few extra days in the country for some much needed downtime. Graham’s parents had recently been, so they gave us a whole host of recommendations of things to do. It was the dead of winter, not the tourist season, so many things weren’t open. Fine by us! The greatest thing about the non-tourist season is that no one’s there! (We often travel at non-peak times.)

We travel a lot of places where people are nice – I think being nice is basic human nature – but fewer places where people are really warm. (Like run up and give you a hug just for being there warm. Invite you to their house to meet their family and share a meal warm.) The people of Ireland are one of those places where folks are really warm and inviting. When I needed Graham to help me set up for the conference presentation, despite his not having a conference registration, they waved him in as if it were no big deal. Cab drivers were universally helpful, like short-term tour guides. They told us about their families, too! And our host in Cobh was absolutely delightful – she even recorded TV shows she wanted us to see. It was wonderful and just what we needed.

We spent the first few days and last few days of our trip in Dublin. It look us a bit to figure out Dublin, but once we did we ended up extending our trip!

Where to stay

We stayed at the Trinity Capital Hotel because it was relatively cheap for a “4-star” hotel. 4-star is generous unless you upgrade to the “Executive King” (aka the Tara Rooms). They’re more than worth the extra 20EUR per night as they’re superior to the regular King rooms in every way (sqft,

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air conditioning, couches, dual sinks, bath, etc.) The hotel decor is very trendy and generally playful.

Food

It’s easier to find good quality food in the country-side, than it is in Dublin, where every place seems to serve touristy pub food. But after a little work, we found

  • Fallon & Byrne — Dublin’s equivalent of Draeger’s Market (San Francisco), Central Market (Houston), or Zupan’s (Portland OR). The Farm is a few blocks off of Grafton Street.
  • The Farm — Freshly made, organically sourced dishes. Regardless of what you think of organic, we find that restaurants that tout ‘organic’ usually care more about the freshness of their ingredients and the quality of their meals.

The best find, however, was Angela’s and my favorite corner in Dublin: Junior’s Restaurant, Slattery’s Pub, and Paulie’s Pizza. Paulie’s is owned by Juniors. Paulie’s was so good, that we extended our stay in Dublin two more nights so that we could eat at Juniors. We loved those places. Not really fancy. Just solid hole-in-the-wall finds. Slat’s is an awesome pub. No tourists, just locals. Packed to the gills with people every night.

See

Our trip to Dublin was about professional commitments and much needed relaxation than running around.

4) We liked the Book of Kells and the Long Hall at Trinity College.
5) If you watch Downton Abbey, you’ll like the Georgian house tour at 29 Fitzwilliam

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Other Dublin comments:

1) Guinness Storehouse is a big disappointment.
2) We did the Jameson Distillery tour at the plant down in Midleton, Co. Cork. We heard the distillery tour in Dublin is fake, not unlike the Guinness tour.
3) The new Waterford Crystal tour is pretty good, even if you think Waterford for old ladies. The plant was recently reopened by some American investors, and they only do “specialty” pieces, like the superbowl trophy and the people’s choice awards, etc.. So it’s a very intimate tour, i.e. you can interact with the crystal carvers. We had fun.

6) I spent a pleasant afternoon at Cafe en Seine. It’s a beautiful spot when the sun is pouring through the skylights. I hear they have dancing in the evenings.

Anyway, that’s my quick summary. If you guys are planning to get out of the city at all, we spent several days in Cobh, Co. Cork, and can give you recommendations for things to do/places to eat in the Southern part of the country.

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Bittman Banana Bread

29 May 2014 Lagniappe

I’m in love with Mark Bittman’s cookbook How to Cook Everything Vegetarian: Simple Meatless Recipes for Great Food. Seriously, it may be my favorite cookbook ever. And don’t let the green color and polarizing title fool you. (Gutsy move, that, including the word “vegetarian” on the cover and all. The word “meatless” practically goes unnoticed.) [...]

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Lime Angel Food Cake with Lime Glaze and Pistachios (Bon Appetite)

29 May 2014 Lagniappe

When my two issues* of Bon Appetite arrived in the mail about 3 weeks ago, I thumbed through and almost immediately found this recipe for Lime Angel Food Cake with Lime Glaze and Pistachios. Smitten by the recipe, I sent my in-laws an email impulsively inviting them over for Easter lunch. To have Lime Angel [...]

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Dublin, Ireland: Eat

29 May 2014 Lagniappe

It’s easier to find good quality food in the country-side, than it is in Dublin, where every place seems to serve touristy pub food. But after a little work, we found Fallon & Byrne — Dublin’s equivalent of Draeger’s Market (San Francisco), Central Market (Houston), or Zupan’s (Portland OR). The Farm is a few blocks [...]

Read the full article →

Pork Chops with Gingered Plum Sauce

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Chicken with (Roughly) 40 Cloves of Garlic

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Favorite Portland, Oregon Restaurants

7 May 2014 Lagniappe

  The Daily Cafe While the weeknight meals are perfectly reasonable, the weekend brunch really seals the deal. Applewood smoke bacon, perfectly seasoned potatoes, and Kim Boyce’s delectable scones and corn muffins really start the day out right. The staff is consistent (low turnover!) and always polite. Later in the morning they tend to get [...]

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