January 9th, 2021

Comfort Food, Cider Beef, Smashed Cheddar Potatoes, Recipe, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, Delaware Beaches, Soups and Stews, It’s Chilly Out There!!

Don’t you love those recipes that you keep making them year after year. At times they are only made at certain times. Could be holidays, birthdays, or just because.

I call these recipes Keepers. We keep them close and even though they may not be an original recipe, then you make it your own by adding a little bit of this or a little bit of that.

In 2007 Rachel Ray shared one of her mother’s recipes. It is called Elsa’s Cider Beef With Smashed Cheddar Potatoes. Over the years I have made it and truly love it.

Following is the recipe for this comfort food, more so on a chilly winter night like tonight.

2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons of butter

2 lbs. top sirloin, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes

salt and black pepper

1 large onion, chopped

3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped (I added an extra carrot)

1 lb turnips, peeled and chopped

4 tablespoons of all purpose flour (If you make this recipe gluten free you need another type of flour. It will work.)

2 cups good quality apple cider (dark and cloudy) 100% cider, not juice

1 15 ounce can of beef stock

3 lbs of Idaho potatoes. I did half and half adding sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped.

1/2 cup milk (I used fat free half and half)

1/2 cup sour cream (I used light sour cream)

2 cups shredded sharp white cheese (I used extra sharp)

3 tablespoons chopped or snipped fresh chives.

Pre heat oven to 425 degrees.

Place a large stew pot or Dutch oven with a lid over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and butter. When the butter melts, season the beef with salt and pepper. I used rock salt. Add to the pot. Brown on all sides about 7 to 8 minutes.

Add the onions, carrots, and turnips and cook for about 5 minutes.

Sprinkle the veggies and meat with the flour and stir to combine for about 1 minute.

Stir in the apple cider and the beef stock, bring to a boil, cover the pan and transfer to the oven. Braise it for 45 minutes.

In 15 minutes boil the potatoes in salted water. Make sure the water covers the potatoes. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat a bit. Cook about 15 minutes until tender.

Drain the potatoes, return to the pot and add the milk, sour cream, and cheese. To mash the potatoes I used a hand blender, then added a bit of salt and pepper (optional) and the chives. Cover and keep warm. If they cool off then place in microwave and reheat.

To serve, ladle the stew into bowls. Make a well in the center and fill with the potatoes. I put the potatoes first and made the well and then fill with the stew. Your choice.

It is delicious. The combination of beef, turnips and apple cider gives a distinct flavor.

Hope you like it.

January 9th, 2021

AboutMyBeaches, The Talk of Delmarva, WGMD, Bob Yesbek, Rehoboth Foodie, Food, Radio Talk Show, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware Beaches, Southern Delaware

Hello there. It is Saturday, January 9th. Life continues as it should and here in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, we continue to experience great food even through a pandemic.

The Rehoboth Foodie, our local celebrity when it comes to restaurant reviews has a weekly radio show on 92.7 FM where he invites guests and have a one on one chat. I was honored to have been invited for today’s show. It will take place at 2 p.m. If you are a local then you can tune in but you can also stream it on http://www.wgmd.com.

A podcast will also be available after the broadcast at http://www.rehobothfoodie.com/PODCASTS.

My talk with Bob included the traditions of my Puertorican heritage. It was Three Kings Day or the Epiphany when we taped so I was able to bring him some pasteles, fried plantains, mojito, arroz con gandules (pigeon peas) and Puertorican famous Coquito which the eggnog.

It was a lot of fun and I got to know Bob better and experience his sense of humor.

Also on the radio show you will hear from SoDel Concepts’ Corporate Pastry Chef Dru Tevis and Baywood’s Head Pastry Chef Ellie Keck for a behind-the scenes peek at how they keep 12 restaurants in fresh, new desserts.

Have a beautiful day. It is chilly in Southern Delaware but the sun is out!!

Remember AboutMyBeaches has a Facebook Page where you can read what’s going on and leave me some comments.

January 5th, 2021

Shorebreak Lodge, Restaurant, Review, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, Casual, American Food, Eclectic, Heated Patio, Southern Delaware, Open Year Round, Lunch and Dinner

The Delaware Beaches have been crowded this Holiday Season. Why not? The weather has been somewhat “warm”, the beach is an inspiration for many, shopping could be a therapy for most. A change of scenery which feels soooo good.

This area is a foodie’s paradise. You really find a wide variety of foods and establishments. I have felt very safe in the restaurants. They are really doing a good job.

Having lived here for a long time I have my favorite restaurants. My blog was started in 2009 to promote the area. And, I think I have.

One of such restaurants that I use like a neighborhood restaurant is Shorebreak Lodge, located at 10 Wilmington Ave. in Downtown Rehoboth Beach. They will be open for lunch and dinner Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from Noon until 10 p.m. http://www.shorebreaklodge.com

You can reserve online or you can call them at 302-227-1007.

Shorebreak also has Bar Seating. Great when there are only two of you. Good music and great wines.

If you would like a French 75 Cocktail this will be a good restaurant to try one. Ask to be made with Courvoisier instead of Gin.

I can tell you that I have loved everything I have tried at Shorebreak. But I always, for the most part, order the Grilled Octopus. It is the most tender octopus you will ever try. You can ask my brother, Miguel.

The Char Grilled Octopus is placed over Kohlrabi garbanzo slaw, harissa aioli.

The Seared Duck Breast melts in your mouth. Served with fingerling potatoes, beet greens and a butternut squash puree.

The Day Boat Scallops are huge. Most of all offerings can be served as appetizers or entrees.

The Shrimp N Grits are so well seasoned including a chorizo sauce.

The Deviled Eggs are very popular. A House Chimmi sauce and house cured bacon. What’s not to like?

You see that Hummus photo? Someone in the group said I don’t want any. I will tell you that it is outstanding. Pepita pesto, pickled red onion, garbanzo beans and toasted naan.

Brie N Naan was another choice for the table. Great for a crowd.

Coming to the desserts which are usually ordered when there is a group. Carrot Cake, a Key Lime Cake and a Chocolate Cake were sweet endings with everyone taking a bite here or there.

Enjoying a dinner with friends, good conversation, tasty food….all priceless!!

Shorebreak Lodge has a Facebook Page. AboutMyBeaches has a Facebook Page, as well where you can read little teasers of what’s to come to the blog or just leave a comment there. Until then, Have a Great Week.

January 4th, 2021

New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Southern Delaware Eats, Delaware Beaches, 2021, Rehoboth Beach, Lewes, Wining and Dining at the Delaware Beaches

I don’t know about you but I think we are becoming better cooks nowadays. I wish I could say the same about baking. It is not my forte but I can make a few things too.

I always say that Thanksgiving is a time for an overabundance of food, but, Christmas I like a more simple meal. If you saw my last post a prime rib roast is nothing simple. It makes an amazing presentation, more so if cooked right.

As New Year approached I think I had my fill of beef. Time for some lobster. It looks so pretty at a table and it is delicious. I decided to make a Lobster Newburg. I usually make recipes my own because I add a little bit of this and a little bit of that. At times a secret ingredient of saffron can make it taste out of this world. A few sweet peas….not sure if that’s even on a Lobster Newburg. Some make toast points…..Oh no, we had it over pasta. Pair it with a French 75 cocktail using Courvoisier instead of gin, believe me it is to die for.

The broth had so much taste because using the shells it is the way to go when making a seafood broth.

Save the rest of the broth. You can freeze it for another time.

New Year’s Day is a new beginning. Starting up with a decadent breakfast is always a must. Eggs Benedict, my own style too. Did not want any bread so on top of the grilled asparagus and Surry ham from Surry, Virginia, poached eggs and homemade Hollandaise Sauce.

And then came the Apple Toddy. This recipe has winesap apples which are hard to get around here, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, sugar, grated orange rind, rum, peach brandy, apple brandy, bourbon and lemon juice. You need to start this by cooking the apples then everything goes in a crok in a stoneware crock for 16 weeks. So start way before the holidays and place it in your garage in a cool place.

To drink it pour in your desired glasses and you can cut the apples up in bite size pieces. I never used to enjoy it years ago but I have acquired a liking for this old family recipe.

So in order to finish the day I wanted to get some black eyed peas. Nowhere to be found. Yeap, I went a little too late to some of the stores. I wanted that good luck everyone says they bring you. Black beans will have to do. I decided to make a black bean soup which if I say so myself was pretty good for not planning anything in advance. A little garnish here or there and it turn out as good as the photo shows.

And so another year begins. I did not make any resolutions. I will take one step at a time, enjoying every moment, every day.

Wishing you the best for 2021.

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December 28th, 2020

Christmas 2020, The Holidays, Holiday Food Traditions, Southern Delaware, Delaware Beaches

One thing this pandemic did not take from us was that we still were able to get together. Some had a small gathering like I did while others were Zooming or Face Timing. We all had smiles on our faces. There were so many decorations, lights and all.

In Southern Delaware homes had beautiful Christmas lights. Whites, blues, and combinations thereof. I have been driving after sunset and checking the neighborhoods.

Cooking has become a passion of many. There are so many photos being passed around of the food at everyone’s table.

Some years ago I would celebrate dinner on Christmas Eve but lately I enjoy it more on Christmas Day with my guests coming around 6 p.m.

I made my Puertorican Coquito which is the traditional eggnog of Puerto Rico. It is not thick but it is truly delicious. It is usually made this time of the year and given to family and friends.

Most years I have a standing rib roast. I have also had a whole filet, as well. This year another gorgeous rib roast from Hickmans located on Coastal Highway in Rehoboth Beach was a winner. So much so I fogot to take photos of the side dishes. They were simple but complemented this gorgeous prime rib. Starting with a Caesar Salad made by TC who makes the best. A spinach gratin, mashed potatoes adding Crema, and broiled grape tomatoes with a hint of homemade pesto.

Lucky that we all liked our meat rare.

Rib roasts look intimidating but they are really not hard to cook. If you have someone like TC who knows his way around the kitchen then what’s to worry. Me? I have not had an oven since October so him cooking was perfect. These were 5 ribs which left us with leftovers which is exactly what we wanted.

A successful dinner party is priceless when the food is as delicious as this. It is also successful when your dinner guests bring to the table laughter, good conversation and an acknowledgement that friendships are so important.

Not one pie but 3 pies. Once again since I did not have an oven my pies were courtesy of Pasqualini’s located at 375 Atlantic Ave. in Rehoboth Beach.

The first pie on the left was a mixed berry pie. Here is a close up.

The second pie was requested. It is a mincemeat pie. These pies were first served in the early middle ages, filled with a mixture of finely minced meat, chopped fruit and a preserving liquid. No meat is in the pie anymore. Lots of raisins and pretty good it was.

I like cherry pies so that is probably why the third pie was cherry.

Coffee, party crackers, Coquito and more laughter. I think we all had fun. The holidays come and go so quickly. With our smaller group this year we were able to spend quality time at the dinner table which to me is the center for family and friends.

From this post I will be sharing my food photos, as well on social media. Why not? It really was a delicious meal.

New Year’s? I have no idea what we will be fixing. I find that Thanksgiving is abundance, Christmas is more subdued and New Year’s could be a fun menu. Stay tuned.

Happy New Year. Wishing you the best for 2021. Health, Happiness, and Acceptance.

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December 22nd, 2020

El Coquito Navideno, Puertorican Eggnog, Christmas Traditions, Puerto Rico, The Caribbean, La Isla del Encanto, Feliz Navidad

A simple mantle, a hot fire, Christmas is just a few days ahead. Growing up in Puerto Rico the weather is constantly warm. It does have a cooler season from January until the beginning of March. Best time to visit.

Holidays in Puerto Rico are very long. They last until mid January, when other festivals will also take place. It is like anything, it is not the same way now. In my youth there were great family parties during Christmas and then during Three Kings Day or El Dia de Los Reyes there were roasted pigs, blood sausage, which by the way are the best, tripe and all those things someone other than a foodie would think is so foreign. A Spanish island full of history and tradition. Three Kings Day is the Epiphany. Very Catholic too.

Pasteles are typically eaten during the Holiday Season. My grandmother Juanita made the best. Very labor intensive. They almost look like a tamal. Made out of plantains with and an adobo stuffing, olives, chickpeas, raisins, chicken, pork or beef, then wrapped in banana leaves. They are also made out of yuca, a root vegetable.

The photo above shows the ones I had flown from Orlando, Florida for my Three Kings Day dinner where my friends tasted them among other things like fried plantains called tostones.

Getting to the purpose of my post is the Coquito or Puertorican Eggnog. They said the Spanish invented it. Who knows. It is indigenous to the island, though. Everyone has a recipe, adding a little bit of this or a little bit of that. Rum being a main ingredient for sure. I love drinking it in a small aperitif glass.

The glasses here were my grandmother’s Palmira Pereyo Lopez. I love them and they are perfect for my Coquito. I used the Barcardi Gold Rum. I almost forgot, but you fill the empty rum bottle and give it as presents.

This recipe I have comes out delicious. I even got glass bottles to give some away. So this is how it goes:

Mi Coquito Navideno

4 cans (12 ounces each) of evaporated milk

1 can of condensed milk

2 cans (15 ounces each) of coconut cream, not coconut water

2 teaspoons of Vanilla

2 teaspoons of Cinnamon

6 egg yolks

1 bottle of rum (750ml) I used Bacardi Gold

a cap of Brandy or more

Beat by hand the 6 egg yolks in a small container

Blend separately the following in a large container 1 can of the evaporated milk, vanilla, and cinnamon.

Add the beaten egg yolks, the rest of the evaporated milk, the condensed milk, the coconut cream and the Brandy.

Then the whole bottle of rum. Mix well.

NOTE: Some time the Coconut Cream has separated. Mix it well. If the Coquito is lumpy use a sieve and put through the whole mixture.

The Coquito is not thick. It does get a little thicker when refrigerated.

Drinking it cold is the way to enjoy it. It can last in the refrigerator for some time because all the rum it has. It won’t last long though.

Anyway, play with it and make it your own.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Feliz Navidad.

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December 13th, 2020

Harbour, Historic Lewes, Delaware, Restaurant, Review, Waterfront Dining, Canal Square, Mid Atlantic and Global Inspired Cuisine, Southern Delaware, Delaware Beaches.

Taking advantage of one glorious Sunday, probably the nicest day in the next coming week, as rain, and even some snow are in the forecast.

Lewes is totally decorated for the holidays. Being that it is a balmy weekend, so many people are visiting the Delaware Beaches taking also advantage of outlet shopping with tax free shopping as well.

Me? I have been enjoying those blue skies and thanking that living at the beaches is not to be taken for granted.

Harbour opened at 134 West Market Street in Lewes, DE year. They are now serving lunch from 11:30 until 2:00 p.m. with Happy Hour, Food and Drink Specials from 3 until 5 p.m. Dinner takes place from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. Opens from Wednesday until Sunday. Reservations are required by phone at this time by calling 302-200-9522. Check out their website at http://www.harbourlewes.com

We arrived with no reservations at around 1:30 p.m. and were lucky to see that a couple was leaving the perfect table under the awning with beautiful view of the canal.

The restaurant is quaint. Has a private room for your special events, a nice bar and two indoor dining rooms.

A couple of Bloody Marys on this pretty Sunday. Checking out the menu. More than a few specials, as well.

I ordered their Farmers Market Salad to be topped with salmon. It is a simple salad, dressed lightly but the salmon is what makes it special. It is so delicious. Try it next time. Very much recommended.

Do you like Fish & Chips? A very good one it is served here at Harbour. It is craft beer battered Virginia Founder. Lightly fried and full of flavor too. Fries, coleslaw and a remoulade sauce on the side.

You love sitting outside even when chilly? Harbour also has heaters even though today was just perfect weather.

Hope your weekend was awesome. And, please continue to read my posts. Thanks.

Until then, I remain….

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December 12th, 2020

Eden, Restaurant, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, Review, Monthly Wine Dinners, Happy Hour, Specials, Delaware Beaches, Southern Delaware

Full of atmosphere, Eden is located in the trendy street called Baltimore Ave., in Downtown Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. 23 Baltimore Ave. to be exact, in the beach block.

Last night this was a destination for us. How surprising to see Rehoboth Beach full of cars. It is a balmy weekend in Southern Delaware, and the beaches, tax free shopping and a foodie paradise are part of the charm of what many call the Nation’s Summer Capital. The town is fully decorated for the Christmas Holiday. It usually is but this year both, commercial businesses and homes have gone all out. Saying goodbye to 2020 in a big way.

Eden has Happy Hour every day, and specials too. Wine diners and professional service is always a plus. Their tel. is 302-227-3330 and their website is http://www.edenrestaurant.com.

Love their Grilled Caesar Salad with a sun dried tomato/olive tapenade and pecorino romano. I always order it and it never disappoints.

I don’t think you see Antelope in the many restaurants in Rehoboth Beach. It is always on their menu. Last night was my choice. I chose not to get the sweet potato mashers so only bacon roasted Brussels sprouts for me. The antelope tenderloin was cooked medium rare and topped with a berry/red wine reduction. Full of flavor and tender.

This meat comes Broken Arrow Ranch in Texas. They are milder tasting compared to the ones farther north. I found out that Texas antelope is more tender because they do not confront the same predatory threats on the ranch.

The daily fish special was the Rockfish on top of pasta and veggies. Well received. This is a local fish and it is also very mild. Looks amazing, don’t you think?

No dessert because watching what you eat at this time of the year is a must.

Have a beautiful weekend.

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