Food For The Soul

I've been raised with the principle of home cooking. Not that we lacked the means to eat out, but there was little desire to spend money on food that Grandma can easily cook at the convenience of home, even more tasteful than other places. She can whip out idiosyncratic Peruvian delicacies such as, ceviche, papa a la huancaina, lomo saltado and relleno, with the same deft and finesses as pizza, ice cream and hamburgers. It was her dedication and love for cooking that my mother carried on with her through the years. I guess it's genetics. There was a subtle misbalance or discontinuation of such genes when I came out of the woodwork. I'm not Mario Batali, but I will cook if I'm presented with Survivors-like scenarios. In my head, I'm the neglected latino son of Martha Stewart. 

Apparently, I've fallen into the trap of documenting what I digest. As ubiquitous as it is, I like this trend. Why not? If the majority of us can't afford a couture piece, it seems plausible that we find comfort in other places, food is not a bad source. I think the term "comfort", though, takes a slightly heighten expression in America. I'm not going to elaborate on the perilous obesity problems America is facing now, and how food contributes to that, just because this, sadly, is not a food blog nor bon appétit, but instead, underscore the opportunity I have to bring attention to this matter through this blog (shout-out to Michelle Obama). 

On a sunny, unsuspecting August day, I wended to Copper Canyon Grill in Downtown Silver Spring before heading to the cinema. I've never eaten there, but the outside decor looked welcoming. I believe there was a small bonfire display behind plexi glass, it caught my attention. Out of all the items I ordered (at heart, I'm a fat guy trapped in a slim's guy body - get me out!), the most visually appealing was this grilled chicken sandwich (above) accompanied by precisely cut tomato slices, delicious avocado, fresh pieces of lettuce and what I can only described as Chinese celery. It also came along a serving of slim cut potatoes sticks and a silver cup of good ol' ketchup. I'm not American, but I think this can be easily pigeonholed as an all-American meal. (The plate, by the way, made me feel like I was lunching at the Georgia O'Keeffe ranch, I was loving it). 

Just recently, I visited The Dupont Italian Kitchen on 17th Street. The locale has a nice looking patio filled with round tables and a few patches of greenery. Conveniently, it was a slightly breeze, cool night, making our experience even more enjoyable. Perfect weather to eat outside. I ordered a Caprese Salad, consisting of 3 vine-ripe slices of tomatoes, fresh thick slices of mozzarella and basil leaves surreptitiously hidden in between the two. Since then, I've been transformed. If I could have this salad every day, I would. For the serious meal, I ordered a Fettucinne Alfredo. As the waiter was approaching, I could easily see the smoke slowly rising and dissipating in mid-air. The creamy Alfredo sauce swimming with the delicate angel hair made for a compelling observation. When it's eaten with a piece of garlic bread, the experience in your mouth is yet more scrumptious. 

One of the undeniably best areas in D.C. is Georgetown. On any day, you can find the best looking dressed gallivanting the cobble sidewalks of M Street and quite ordinarily you will find the most dreadful looking get ups all on the same place. All in all, it's a magnificent entertainment metropolis. I was suggested to eat at Ristorante Piccolo, right off 31st Street and M. The restaurant is unapologetic Italian, from the menu (which is all titled in Italian, but provides description in English) and the interior decor, to the manner in which the server go about their waiting duties. I was particularly overwhelmed with the precision and attention given to how the food is placed on the table and mannerism of staff. I've read the restaurant has been open since 1985 and is famous (or infamous) for being "a perfect spot for first dates and marriage proposals". Though I wasn't proposed, I knew why this family run business has been so successful in a very competitive market. 

The seemingly endless litany of choices was stunning; a dashing variety of poultry and veal, and well balanced salads, and succulent pasta dishes. I've opt-out from the obvious (pasta) and ordered something less obvious, chicken. The dish was dubbed, "Pollo all'Aglio", which basically consisted of a grilled chicken breast marinated in a subtle acidic concoction accompanied with a puree of baked potatoes and veggies, all served in a stark white squared plate. The chicken was tender, with a roasty, fumed aroma, and the veggies tasted as if they were just harvested. The whole spectacle did not only looked delicious, but tasted delicious. 

Not everything that I've digested lately is being documented within the premises of this blog, it would just take too long to elaborate. Let's keep it short and sweet. Though at times, it may seem, in my head, that I've been eating as if I was at The Last Supper, I've been just exploring "what's out there". It goes without saying, all this scrumptiousness was consumed with the help of good ol' wata!

1 comment:

Andrés Corella said...

Wow..this food looks amazing...which is killing me cause I am on diet haha...but damn that sandwish look goooood!

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