Sunday, April 4, 2010

Food, Glorious Food!

I went to Houston, this weekend, to visit my sister and her husband. My dad was out of town, and my mom and I decided we'd like to spend the Easter holidays en famille so we road-tripped on down I-45 Friday.

My mom reunited (and it felt so goooood) with one of her gal pals from college Friday evening, and my sister and the hubster took me to Grimaldi's out in Sugarland, whose motto should be Sugarland: Our stores' signage is creepy! Seriously, all the stores and restaurants have signage the height and font and color of which is dictated by city ordinance so it all matches and gives the thing a Stepford feel.

On to the food! Grimaldi's cooks their pizzas - it's a pizza place, natch - in a coal-fired oven, so the crust is crispy on the outside, but chewy on the inside, and delicious all over. Their mozzarella is the real deal, folks, not that Kraft grated stuff. It's made from the milk of free-range cows, and tastes like the mozzarella di bufala that comes in tubs of water (whey?) in the dairy section of Whole Paycheck - er - Foods. We ordered our pizza with artichoke hearts, Italian sausage, and sundried tomatoes. Delicioso!

Saturday, we had a breakfast of almond croissants from the farmer's market (not sure which one, though, because I slept through the market excursion and awoke in time for the eating bit), scrambled eggs, and strawberries. Lunch was eaten at Stone Mill Bakers in between bouts of frantic interior design shopping. All the ladies had their to die for curried chicken salad sandwich box lunch, which includes a bag of chips, a drink, and a cookie! I had an iced egg-shaped sugar cookie. Yum! Their curried chicken salad is served on raisin bread. Heaven! Heaven!

Saturday night was grass-fed beef roast cooked on the brother-in-law's grill with green and red bell peppers and onions in beer (mmmmmm, beer) with a green salad (arugugugugugula, green beans, other green yummy things) and then shortbread with blackberries and Hank's vanilla ice cream. Hank's ice cream is the best ice cream known to mankind. It bests Bluebell by a country mile. It has so much butterfat in it that you can feel your arteries clog as you digest it. It is wonderful.

You may think my gustatory tale is over, but you are incorrect. Oh no. The coup de grace is just around the corner.

Easter morning, we all went to services at the Emerson Unitarian Universalist Association, and then proceeded to brunch at the Backstreet Cafe on South Shepherd. They had a fixe prix menu for the holiday, and it was an exercise in mental gymnastics to decide what I wanted to order. I could have ordered the vichyssoise followed by roasted leg of lamb with spinach and then strawberry shortcake, or crawfish risotto followed by lobster benedict with a filet and stuffed mushroom and then banana custard, or chicken liver pate followed by the sea trout and then blackberry cobbler with burnt butter ice cream.

I opted, however, to show some restraint, and ordered the mixed greens, followed by the pepper sauteed shrimp with crawfish grits and tempura green onions, with a simple palate cleanser of orange chocolate bread pudding and a dollop of creme fraiche.

Very restrained, indeed.

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