Saturday, October 17, 2009

Post Le Cordon Bleu Days

I have been regretfully lackadaisical in posting on this blog and I apologize to those of you who follow me. Since my last posting I have graduated Summa Cum Laude from the Texas Culinary Academy, Le Cordon Bleu and launched my personal chef business. I have been not only busy with that enterprise...I became engaged to be married! That's right folks, I finally found "The One" and will wed sometime next year. So this is a true "new beginning" for me in more ways than one!

My future hubby lives in Washington, DC. I was lucky enough to visit his fair city in July and I fell in LOVE with DC. It is a beautiful city with countless museums (which I love) and wonderful restaurants (which I ADORE) and friendly neighborhood haunts (where I plan to spent many more evenings). Needless to say, I was in my element.

My fiance's neighborhood, Capitol Hill, is an old and quaint section of town situated near the US Capitol building and the national mall. Capitol Hill is populated by charming bistros and countless row houses. As a former realtor, I found the architecture not only delightful but fascinating. While walking down the streets of Capitol Hill I stumbled across countless precious gardens; pristine, postage-stamp sized little nuggets of perfection. With the Metro (subway) situated mere minutes from his front door, I began my exploration in earnest.

After a mini tutorial of the Metro, I spread my tourist wings and flew solo through the miles of the Smithsonian. The Smithsonian is an amazing compilation of our nations treasures and historically important artifacts that left me breathless. I took innumerable photos and had a lovely time. I stood agape in front of Julia Child's kitchen for more than a moment.

If you have never been to DC I highly recommend a visit. Not only is it our Nation's Capital, it has a plethora of activities to keep you entertained and occupied. Washington will not only educate you, it will fill you with awe. I found my deeply entrenched patriotism bubbling up to the surface time and time again.

Eastern Market was one of my favorite places. My fiance lives two blocks from this font of culinary wonderment. Within this "farmers" market lies many fabulous ingredients waiting to be whipped into a masterpiece. I found everything from soft-shell crabs to eel fresh off the boat! The weekends bring artisans of every flavor. If you are lucky enough to visit this remarkable market during the weekend, bring your checkbook. The artisans that fill Eastern Market's outdoor stalls every weekend will supply original surpises for every person expecting a one of a kind gift chosen specifically for them.

I spent two days wandering the countless halls of the National Gallery, my mouth agape and my camera at the ready. At every turn I found myself scampering (yes, scampering......I can still scamper) towards paintings by every master that I had studied ever so diligently in college. (Ok, for those of you who know me, YES....I admit...........some of them I recognized from playing "Masterpiece" as a child.) Either way, I was enthralled and entranced. Monet, Manet, Rembrandt,.......the list goes on and on. I would still be standing there staring if my fiance hadn't jolted me back to reality with the temptation of a very fine lunch.

Very fine indeed did I find our foray to Legal Seafood. Besides being a minimalists dream of a restaurant, I found the food and service to be exemplary. My Lobster Roll was scrumptious and the nibbles I partook of my fiance's Clam Roll were off the charts. I guess being land-locked for my entire life made this experience most excellent.

Another little gem I was lucky to experience was Cava Mezze. Situated two blocks (yes, everything is two blocks from our apartment) away on 8th Street; this greek gem will make you yell "Opa". My lamb was perfectly medium rare and the harissa just about killed me it was so hot. It was a lovely and romantic end to the best trip I ever took.

Bottom line, my friends, is Washington, DC is THE BOMB! If we decide to live there I will be a happy little clam. In the meantime, I will be cooking away and plotting and planning how I can make YOUR next to-do an event to remember. I still work at Breed & Company in Westlake Hills when I'm not promoting my new business or cooking for my clients. So if you find yourself in Westlake stop by for a chat! I will keep you abreast of any breaking news!

Bon Appetit, mes amis!