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November 21st, 2019

The Grove Market, Bishopville, MD, Restaurant, Review, The Art of Wining and Dining, Delmarva

The menu should be part of the entertainment, part of the dining experience. The 3 Cs “I like my food like my fashion: Casual, Classy, and with a Touch of Couture”.

And so our dining experience took us to The Grove Market, located at 12402 Saint Martins Neck Rd., Bishopville, MD 21813. Tel. 410-352-5055. This location is right outside Ocean City.

Crushed seashells pave the parking lot. Flags, a pizza sign, whimsical too. I believe the restaurant only has about 10 tables. And, yes, it is hard to get a reservation so give yourself about 2 weeks. Call, leave a message, give a few dates. If you like to eat late, I suggest you do so. Last reservation is at 9 p.m. Cash only. Checks accepted. It gets crowded in the summer. They only serve wine and beer.

Our reservation was at 8:30 a few weekends ago. This past Sunday, November 17th they closed until the beginning of May. For some of you it might be too late to eat but for us it was the perfect time to enjoy a relaxing dinner. John McDonal was the Chef Extraordinare, from Delaware, he works his magic in a very small kitchen. He has an amazing reputation and a wine connoisseur.

There is no menu. Out loud at your dinner table or if you are seated in the back it will be for the few tables to hear. You need to pay attention because they do offer a lot, both for the appetizers and the entrees.

You will find at the Grove Market quality in their ingredients, culinary competence because John MacDonald outdoes himself every time, service is personal and attentive. The ambiance? Well, you can see by the photos that it is a little quirky. Come hungry because they serve healthy portions. About $100 per person give or take.

The menu changes but they do have a lot of the customers’ favorites throughout the season.

Crab Remick
No Noodles Beef Stroganoff

I usually order the duck. It is a Delaware duck, roasted with a semi-sweet sauce and chutney. It is so good….only bones left on the plate kind of a dish.

On this particular night I let TC order it and I ordered a shrimp and crab dish. Crabs from Smith Island, no less, with a bit of Sherry and a slight kick to the dish. Yummy.

The breadsticks are a reminder that once upon a time this little restaurant was also a Pizza place.

I can honestly tell you that everything at the Grove Market is consistently good. Other dishes that are delicious are:

The Rack of Lamb

The Scallops

The Crab Cakes

There are several desserts to try but it seems that one of the most popular ones is the Bumbleberry Pie. There is no such thing as a Bumbleberry…it is just a mixture of berries.

Leslie, the owner, had time to chat on our visit which was great since in the summer there is, practically, no time.

It is a special place. Keep it in mind when you visit next season. You will not be disappointed.

Until next time…..Have a Happy Thanksgiving. Please check AboutMyBeaches Facebook Page.

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November 18th, 2019

Paul’s Kitchen & Cullen-ary Company, Chef’s Table Demo, Dinner, Paul Cullen, Musician, Chef, Sommelier, Sunday Market, Lewes, Delaware, Delaware Beaches, Southern Delaware, The Art of Cooking, Wining and Dining

Food serves as a way for people to come together. That is exactly what happened on this past Saturday, November 16th, when 12 strangers, all foodies with three goals in mind….cooking, wining, and dining. We met at Paul’s Kitchen & Cullen-ary Company located at 32882 Cedar Grove Rd., Lewes, DE. Tel. 302-228-9772. Website? http://www.paulcullen.rocks

If you are a resident of Southern Delaware, at some point or another you would have heard of Paul Cullen. Better yet, you would have heard him playing his guitar and singing at different venues, private homes, charity concerts. He has worn many hats in his life and continues to evolve. He will be the first one to tell you this.

Paul’s Kitchen & Cullen-ary Company is on Facebook. You might want to check it out and Like it. He will have the Chef’s Table Demos and Dinners posted as they come available. You will be pleasantly surprised how nice an evening like this one can turn out.

His kitchen is cozy and accessible. He is a great host who will show you around and is open to any questions. Nina will be there, as well, since she oversees that everything runs in a timely manner.

The guests arrived promptly and introductions were extended. Wine and hor’ordeuvres were already set up.

Coming out of the Paul’s Kitchen was the Bruschette alla Robiola, pere e noci. Translation? Cheese and pear crostini. Warm and delicious.

The Chef’s Table was so nicely presented. By now we were all friends.

Crema di Cannellini or White Bean Soup. Perfectly seasoned and paired with wine with an explanation of what we were about to taste from Paul. He was animated and throughout the evening you could see how engaging he was with his guests.

“The measure of a good dish is that it makes you want to take another bite.” This quote from Chef Paul Prudhomme was perfect because after having the soup we really wanted not just to take another bite, it was already gone, but wanted to see what else was in stored for us foodies.

The main entree was the Risotto Ai Porrie Salsicia or as we would say in plain English, Sausage and Leek Risotto. The sausage was homemade and complimented the risotto very well. Those grapes were amazing.

A sweet ending was a Torta di Nocciole or Hazelnut Cake and it was paired with such a good dessert wine. Contact Paul for the wines, please.

Laughter throughout the evening continued with stories from some of the guests. How they got here, how they got together and so on. A few were turning 60 now.

An invitation by Paul to listen to him play was the icing on the cake. Finishing a great dinner with new friends with music was priceless!

Our evening came to an end. One more thing though On Sundays from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. stop by Paul Cullen-ary Company for music, food and to shop for cheeses, nuts and other goodies that could be for yourself or someone on your list.

Until next time have a Happy Thanksgiving. Check AboutMyBeaches on Facebook.

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October 11th, 2019

The Blue Hen, Restaurant, Review, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, Outdoor Dining, Southern Delaware, Delaware Beaches, The Art of Wining and Dining

“There is no sincerer love than the love of food.” Nothing beats sitting around with friends and family and having meaningful conversations over a delicious meal.

Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, is a dining destination. You can find almost anything, from the Boardwalk Grub to fine dining.

Outdoor dining is something you do not find in all the restaurants but The Blue Hen located at 33 Wilmington Ave. in Downtown Rehoboth has the outdoor atmosphere, and the food to boot. Their new hours are from Thursday through Monday. Their phone is 302-278-7842. Website? http://www.thebluehenrehoboth.com

Meet me at the Fire Pit is what I just told my friends. In the past few weeks I have visited The Blue Hen twice. Love being able to sit outdoor, whether is to have cocktails or even decide to eat dinner by the fire pit. Great atmosphere.

The Beet Salad was a starter and it is a shareable dish. Golden beets (I love them), pomegrate seeds, pickled onion, red beet yogurt, toasted spiced nuts and herbs. Great way to start a dining experience.

What is the original advice about eating oysters? Only eat them in the 8 months of the year that contain the letter “R”, which means September through April. I, actually, do not follow that advice and nothing has ever happened.

Cold and salty, that’s how I like my oysters.

The scallops at the Blue Hen are delicious. They are a very popular dish. They are served with trumpet mushrooms, braised fennel, sea beans, green apple dashi, and chives. Dashi is a class of soup and cooking stock used in Japanese cuisine.

Eating by the Fire Pit is perfect at this time of the year. Eating outdoors is first come first served regarding to seating arrangements. The Blue Hen accepts reservations for indoor seating.

If you are in Rehoboth visiting and decide to eat at The Blue Hen the Smith Island crab cakes are very good and the fresh Maryland crab will probably only be availabe for another week or so. These are no fillers crab cakes, roasted red bliss potatoes, ham pickle slaw, and tartar sauce.

The Pan Seared King Salmon with baby kale, roasted grapes, celery root puree, pine nuts and brown butter while it was very good, my friend thought it should have been cooked a little bit more.

Dessert…just one will do. Please bring us a few spoons. The chocolate dense cake and mint ice cream hit the right spot.

Rehoboth nights continue in the Second Season. Beautiful nights in the fall is the best time of the year at the beach.

Sitting with my friends enjoying a nice meal reminds me of my own family dinners when t.v. was off and it was time to learn about each other and what everyone had done that day.

A generous spread of delicious food is the universal unifier. Food can be dressed up or down. You can’t rush it, you have to cook from the heart.

Have a great week-end.

Please check AboutMyBeaches Facebook Page. Thanks.

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October 3rd, 2019

Pickled Shrimp, Recipe, Easy, A Collection of Recipes II, The Art of Wining and Dining, Southern Delaware, Delaware Beaches

In 1997 my children went to Worcester Country School in Berlin, MD. Since then the school is now known as Worcester Preparatory School.

Over the years a lot of parents were involved in the school and I was one of them. Book fairs, galas, Christmas Programs, Reading Programs, Teacher Appreciation Luncheons, etc. etc.

Years before my time the school had published a cookbook called A Collection of Recipes. It was as I mentioned above 1997 and the Parents Association decided to do another cookbook called A Collection of Recipes II.

As you can see the book has been used over the years. I was the Chairperson on this journey that took many months with parents giving us their best recipes. It took a school not a village to complete this project.

I don’t think the book is available anymore. Parents supported this book and it was a great success. The book is probably in your cabinet, but I keep my handy because the recipes are really good. I still feel strong about those words in the dedication that said “But food not only nourishes our minds and bodies. Food serves as a way for people to come together — sharing ideas, experiences and cultures”.

Tonight I made a recipe from this book called Pickled Shrimp. I was invited to a friend’s house. Pickled Shrimp is an easy recipe and it is usually liked by everyone. You can serve it year-round.

1 pound medium shrimp, uncooked

1 tablespoon pickling spices

1 tablespoon Dijon style mustard

1 teaspoon prepared horseradish

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon celery salt

1/2 white wine vinegar

2 green onions sliced, including the greens

Pull shrimp from shells. Discard shells. I bought shrimp already peeled and I just pulled the tails out. Make sure if you buy frozen shrimp to defrost them.

In a 2-quart saucepan, cover shrimp and pickling spices with water. Bring to a boil; simmer over medium heat about 2 minutes. Strain water leaving spices on shrimp. Set aside.

In a small bowl combine mustard, horseradish, oil, salt, celery salt, vinegar and onions. Pour over drained shrimp. Cover and refrigerate 6 hours or overnight. The longer you marinate it the better they taste. Pour in a pretty bowl with the sauce and enjoy. Serve cold.

This recipe could easily be doubled, as well.


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September 24th, 2019

Northeast Seafood Kitchen, Ocean View, Delaware, Restaurant, Review, Delaware Beaches, Southern Delaware, The Art of Wining and Dining

“There is a difference betweent dining and eating. Dining is an art. When you eat to get most out your meal, to please the palate, just as well as to satiate the appetite, that, my friend, is dining.” yuan mei

I have to give a shout to our amazing, knowledgeable, and friendly server, Victoria. She was awesome. She knew the menu well.

Meeting friends in Ocean View, Delaware, at Northeast Seafood Kitchen was my destination. It was half price entrees. They have daily specials.

Northeast Seafood Kitchen is located at 29 Atlantic Avenue in Ocean View, DE. Ocean View is a few miles west of Bethany Beach. Just in case you did not know.

Their telephone is 302-539-1785. Website? http://www.northeastseafoodkitchen.com

It was very busy. A lot of restaurants in the area are closed on Tuesdays. No big deal, we waited at the bar. It is not the end of the world.

We ordered 2 salads for sharing.

The first one was a traditional Caesar Salad. Loved those boquerones (white anchovies) on top. Pecorino cheese, house made croutons, Caesar dressing. Simple.


The Baby Spinach was a suggestion from Victoria….tomatoes, sweet shallots, Gorgonzola cheese, roasted pistachos, and a wild berry vinaigrette. Just perfect.

Before I share the rest of the photos I will have to say that the four of us had a very good dinner. Everything was cooked and seasoned just the way it should be. Nothing was overpowering.

The Chef’s Fish Board is where we chose the Catfish and Tuna. Those 2 entrees came with a butternut puree, mushrooms, potatoes, zucchini, squash, cabbage, and a lemon butter sauce.

The Tuna OC Maryland was spiced encrusted and my friend said she had not had a meal like that in months.

Two of us had the Crab Imperial Catfish Chesapeake Bay. It was pan seared and super delicious.

The Farm Style Seafood Stew was also a winner. It had fish, shellfish, calamari, bay leaf, celery, corn on the cob, and a white wine tomato broth.

And did we even have room for dessert. Just one please. So we ordered the upside down blueberry cake. It was pretty good too. Ice cream, nuts…shareable indeed.

I always say that you can review a restaurant all you want, but sharing a meal with old friends is what makes it priceless.

Remember to check my FB page of AboutMyBeaches.

I know it is feels like summer but we are already in the first few days of fall.

Relax, you are At The Beach.

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September 23rd, 2019

Meatless Monday, Spanish Tortilla, Tortilla Espanola, Recipe, Easy, Southern Delaware, Delaware Beaches

It was early in the morning in the Island of Culebra and I was coming back to Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. The beautiful sunrise on this island is breathtaking and so is the sunset. We did have an advantage view.

It was over a week of swimming, cooking, and eating. A few spirits too. This recipe that I will share with you is of the Spanish Tortilla. In Spain every time you visit a tasca you will find the tortilla in their tapas menu. In different regions the Spanish Tortilla is prepared in different ways. Some tortillas have onions and potatoes only. Some are more dry than others. Either way it is a simple dish, one that works in all cases. Breakfast, lunch, dinner or appetizers.

You probably have the ingredients in your refrigerator.

This recipe was given to me without anything written.

Pre-heat oven at 350 degrees.

Peel 2 large potatoes and cut in small chunks.

1 medium onion, chopped.

In a small oven proof skillet put a little bit of olive oil and sautee the potatoes and onions until just soft, seasoning to your taste. Then, beat 4 to 5 eggs which you have added a bit of salt. Pour over the potatoes and onions and cook over low to medium heat until the borders are done.

Put skillet in the oven for 20 minutes.

Invert on a platter and this is how it should look.

To this Spanish Tortilla we added crumbled chorizo sausage. Not a lot just a bit. You don’t want to overtake the tortilla.

Enjoy. Meatless Monday is a global organization trying to inform people that eating healthy is the way to go even if it is just on Mondays.

Check my Facebook Page AboutMyBeaches. Thanks.

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August 28th, 2019

Agave, Restaurant, Tequila Bar, Mexican Food, Review, Lewes, Delaware, Southern Delaware, Delaware Beaches, The Art of Wining & Dining

On July 27, 2009 I wrote my first post on Agave. I was new at this thing called posting. Creating a blog that is pretty much a diary. I did not include any photos. Did not know the importance of photographs due to the fact that we are such visual individuals.

I said Hola Amigos. Why not? Spanish is my first language. As it was then today’s Agave still has Latin music in the background. The huge and delicious margaritas are still served on colorful glasses. The menu does not change much, but for some reason patrons don’t get tired of it. From 2009 I have written posts on Agave. From being particularly upset that you cannot get in because it is so popular. I changed that quickly. I go for late lunches. It works great.

Agave is located at 137 2nd St., Lewes, DE 19958. Tel. 302-645-1232. Website? http://www.agavelewes.com

A favorite drink of mine is the Avocado Martini. First thing to know is that it is not on the menu. It takes more than a few minutes to make. Specially customized for you. The other day Alec made this delicious one.

Friends that have tried it have loved this Avocado Martini. It is smooth, has cilantro and not a salted rim….caramelized sugar instead.

Agave has a beautiful and large Watermelon Salad. Worth ordering and share it with a friend.

The Guacamole is excellent too.

Mango and Avocado Salad is a favorite. Top it with your favorite meat, or have it by itself. Never enough avocados.

The Puffy Tacos are fish tacos but the tortilla is puffy. Grilled Mahi Mahi, jicama slaw, pico de gallo and Mexican lime crema. Rice and black beans as a side dish.

The Corn on the Cob is truly amazing. During the summer at the Delaware Beaches the sweetest corn can be found. Agave’s Corn on the Cob is covered in Chipotle Mayo, Queso Fresco and Lime. Messy, but Oh So Good!!

No dessert was necessary unless you thought about having a Mango Frozen Margarita!!

A great dinner can change your day around. More so if enjoyed with friends.

Saludos y Hasta Luego.

Please remember to check my Facebook Page and leave me some comments. It is good to hear from you. Thanks.

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August 26th, 2019

Ratatouille, Meatless Monday, Recipe, Vegetarian, Easy, Southern Delaware

My late mother in law, Louise, was a great cook. Many years ago she made a cookbook just for the girls and boys in the family. Every Christmas we would get an insert. She called this cookbook: Recipes, Begged, Borrowed, & Stolen. The Ratatouille is from her cookbook and it is prepared skillet style.

This is one of those dishes that you can prepare year round. But, in the summer vegetables are so beautiful and delicious that it is probably the best time of the year to make it. Those bright colors shine in this recipe.

Some people consider it a stew. Olive oil, garlic and herbs add so much flavor to the Ratatouille.

Following is the recipe. Hope you like it.

RATATOUILLE

1eggplant, peeled and cut into cubes. (I did not peel mine)

3 medium squash – zucchini, sliced

2 large onions – chopped

1 clove garlic – minced

1 large can tomatoes – or several fresh ones ( I used the fresh ones)

1 green pepper – chopped

1 small jar of pimiento, juice included

1/3 cup olive oil

1 1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. oregano

1/2 tsp. marjoram

1/2 tsp. dill seeds

In olive oil saute onions for a minute or so, and add rest of the vegetables and spices. Stir well and simmer vegetable mixture for as long as you wish, stirring occasionally.

It is good to cook it for a long time to get those veggies to soften, but do not let them stick.


You can eat the Ratatouille as a side dish, main dish, over pasta, over polenta like I did, as an appetizer with crackers. Add a dash of hot sauce for some kick. In other words, make this recipe your own.


You can double the recipe. Enjoy!!

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