Grains and Pasta

  • Blogs

    October 17, 2014

    Where to Celebrate National Pasta Day in Houston

    National Pasta Day is today -- a reminder, if not an incentive, for for pasta lovers all around town to indulge. Houston has many excellent restaurants where one can celebrate. For a taste of stellar house-made pappardelle bolognese, Best of Houston Italian Restaurant winner Ciao Bello is the pla ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 26, 2014

    Houston Restaurant Weeks: Latin Bites

    What they're up to for Houston Restaurant Weeks: This year, Latin Bites offers a $25 three-course brunch on Sunday and a $35 three-course dinner throughout the week. For each brunch sold, Latin Bites will donate $4 to the Houston Food Bank and $5 for each dinner sold. We decided to check out the HRW ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 14, 2014

    Lonely Leftovers: Get More from your Spinach-Artichoke Dip

    Someone once told me that it's not a party without spinach and artichoke dip. Keeping this old adage in mind, I made a batch of the gooey three-dairy dip for my recent housewarming. Only I forgot to take the casserole out of the oven until everybody had filled their bellies with Lone Star. Not wanti ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 8, 2014

    Leftover Rice From Indian Takeout? Make Kheer

    We have a lot of extra cooked rice in the house these days. My husband has been on an Indian cooking kick, and he successfully made several amazing batches of rogan gosh, fish masala, and chicken vindaloo. He has been less successful in gauging how much rice we would consume with these dishes, which ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 25, 2014

    Order the Curried Quinoa at Benjy's on Washington

    I'm not a vegetarian, but I do enjoy ordering dishes that showcase in-season vegetables, accented with grains or a meat substitute like tofu. During a recent dinner at Benjy's on Washington, I forwent ordering meat-centric dishes like the braised short rib with a creamy cashew butter and cranberry ... More >>

  • Dining

    January 16, 2014

    Tipping in Restaurants Reaches a Tipping Point

    Will 2014 be the year it's abolished?

  • Dining

    December 5, 2013

    At Ciao Bello, Eggs and Flour Combine to Create Dishes of Perfection

    Looking for pasta paradise? You'll find it at Ciao Bello.

  • Dining

    October 31, 2013

    Coppa Osteria Is Reinventing Italian with Heart and Flour-Covered Hands

    Chef Brandi Key's hands-on approach takes Coppa Osteria outside the box.

  • Blogs

    October 2, 2013

    Pasta Eaters Flock to Paulie's and Camerata for Mangiamaccheroni Pop-Up

    "Just drove by and Camerata is hopping on a Sunday night," my friend texted me at around 6 p.m. this past Sunday. I arrived shortly thereafter to confirm her assessment. It was definitely hopping. Even before pushing open the doors, I noticed that a nice crowd had gathered at Camerata. The atmosph ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 16, 2013

    What's Cooking This Week? Breakfast for Dinner & More

    I love cooking for my fiancé and myself, but most of the time, cooking for two proves to be difficult. If I don't make a plan, I end up running around in circles at the grocery store and wasting half the ingredient's I've bought (and I hate wasting food). Enter What's Cooking This Week - my weekly ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 2, 2013

    What's Cooking This Week? Baked Eggs w/ Chorizo Hash & More

    I love cooking for my fiancé and me, but most of the time, cooking for two proves to be difficult. If I don't make a plan, I end up running around in circles at the grocery store and wasting half the ingredient's I've bought (and I hate wasting food). Enter What's Cooking This Week - my weekly meal ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 19, 2013

    Chef Chat, Part 3: Jean-Philippe Gaston of Cove Takes Us on a Trip Around the World

    This week, we've been talking to Jean-Philippe Gaston of Cove, one of those under-the-radar chefs who likes to let his work speak for itself. Before we start our tasting, I notice his shelf full of cookbooks. Gaston pulls one down from the pile, the gold macrame- colored binding slightly ripped. He ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 10, 2013

    The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same at Cavatore

    "We needed to change with the times to reach the same audience while bringing in new clientelle," said Federico Cavatore, explaining some of the recent changes to his family's 30 year old Italian restaurant housed in a 100 year old barn on Ella, and the subject of this week's cafe review. "We've inc ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 24, 2013

    Cooking "With" Christine Ha: A Look Inside Recipes from My Home Kitchen

    As Christine Ha's official stalker biggest fan, I was naturally excited to get her cookbook home and start testing out her Recipes from My Home Kitchen--especially after I attended Ha's recent book signing without making a complete idiot out of myself (I hope), or getting arrested for Aggravated Fan ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 10, 2013

    Chef Chat, Part 3: Riccardo Palazzo-Giorgio of Hawthorn Makes His Own Pastas, Sausages and Pie Crust

    This is last part of a three-part chef chat series. If you missed our previous posts, you can read Part 1 here and Part 2 here. This week, we chatted with Riccardo Palazzo-Giorgio, the executive chef and partner at Hawthorn in Upper Kirby, a restaurant that is literally a hidden gem because its phy ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 4, 2012

    Pollo Campero Delivers Fresh, Bright, Fun Flavors

    A Sunday afternoon. A hangover. A trip to Penzy's to shop for Christmas presents. Are you starting to see the pattern forming? These exact conditions led to my recent, semi-successful trip to El Rey on Washington a few weeks ago and they are what led me back to the same neighborhood (neighborhoods, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 15, 2012

    What's Cooking This Week? Peanut Chicken Lettuce Wraps & More

    I love cooking for my fiancé and me, but most of the time, cooking for two proves to be difficult. If I don't make a plan, I end up running around in circles at the grocery store and wasting half the ingredients I've bought (and I hate wasting food). Enter What's Cooking This Week - my weekly meal ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 21, 2012

    The Golden Noodle: A Mac N' Cheese Smackdown

    I should have worn my stretchy pants. I should have known better. Yet, there I found myself, trying macaroni and cheese after macaroni and cheese with no end in sight, trying harder and harder after every bite to keep a poised, lady-like posture while simultaneously using every inkling of strength t ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 16, 2012

    What Are We Stuffing? Avocados

    Avocados are popular in salads, sandwiches and, of course, smashed into guacamole; everyone loves the avocado. I've always stuck to slicing and dicing avocado to add creaminess to my salads or even as a substitute for cheese on a burger, but until now I'd never thought to stuff an avocado. It's one ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 27, 2012

    The 5 Most Common Risotto Mistakes

    Risotto is one of the most difficult dishes to master. The first attempt is not perfect, unless you're Gordon Ramsay, of course, but these five common mistakes people make while cooking a risotto dish may help you become a master, or at least not screw up one completely. 5. Texture can make or brea ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 18, 2012

    What's Cooking This Week? Avocado, Tomato & Corn Salad, Grilled Lemon Chicken & More

    I love homemade meals with my fiancé, but most of the time, cooking for two proves to be difficult. If I don't have a game plan, I end up running around in circles at the grocery store and wasting half the ingredients I've bought (and I HATE wasting food). Enter What's Cooking This Week - my weekly ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 12, 2012

    100 Favorite Dishes 2012: No. 78, Oxtail Francobolli at Aldo's Cucina Italiana

    This year leading up to our annual Best of Houston® issue, we're counting down our 100 favorite dishes in Houston. This list comprises our favorite dishes from the last year, dishes that are essential to Houston's cultural landscape and/or dishes that any visitor (or resident) should try at least o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 10, 2012

    Fresh Pasta and Memories on the Menu at Paulie's Restaurant

    About a year ago a friend of mine suggested Paulie's Restaurant on Westheimer for a lunch date. She knew I was on the hunt for high-quality but casual Italian food, and thought Paulie's might fit the bill. Like most people who come from immigrant Italian stock (my paternal grandmother was from Rome, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 29, 2012

    Simple Sides: Delicious Herbed Quinoa

    Up until about a month ago, I had never tried quinoa. I was like, "What the hell is it? How do you pronounce it? Is it a grain? Is What do you put on it? Why is there so much in my brother's pantry?" So many questions. The bro had recently come back from a little stint in Peru ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 26, 2012

    What's Cooking This Week?

    Last week was filled with classic favorites, Galumpkis, Corned Beef Deli Sandwiches & Blackened Tilapia. I picked up some amazing sweet potato gnocchi and an awesome-looking mango chutney last weekend, so this week I'll definitely be using both in my menu. Here's what I'm making: Veal Saltimbocca ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 5, 2012

    What's Cooking This Week?

    My Italian menu last week really felt like home. Luckily, I have a bunch of visitors coming in the next couple of weeks to keep the feeling alive. Since I'll surely be taking them to the Rodeo and eating way too much food, this week I'll be making lightened up versions of some of my favorites. Here ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 28, 2011

    What's Cooking This Week?

    Last week's menu was the perfect lead-up to the massive feast that is Thanksgiving. I spent the day itself in NJ with the best family and friends a girl could ask for. Back to the grind now and ready for some new treats. Here's what I'm making: Broiled Halibut & Roasted Onions w/ Tomato & Cucumb ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 18, 2011

    Vegan Dreamquest Dinner 2: Beetloaf With Gravy

    Photo by Joanna O'LearyMeatloaf Just Like Your Mother (Earth) Used to Make.​Although Houston certainly has a decent amount of restaurants serving vegan food, my wallet wouldn't allow me to eat every dinner out during Vegan Dreamquest. On the second night, my friend Kattie and I hosted a potluc ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 4, 2011

    Going Vegan: Trimming My Waistline, Trimming My Budget, Expanding My Horizons

    For the past two weeks, in an attempt to experiment with new ingredients and foods, I've been eating vegan when I haven't been working. Admittedly, I "work" -- that is, eat -- for about half of my meals. But the other half have been [almost] entirely vegan. And it's been a fulfilling challenge. As ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 21, 2011

    Sampler Plate: This Week in Food Blogs

    The Atlantic: In one of the most-discussed articles of the week, The Atlantic asks: "Who wants to be a career food critic anyway?" Citing mounting pressures to blog, Tweet, Facebook and perform a million other small tasks in addition to writing restaurant reviews, author Adam Martin questions if thi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 2, 2011

    Odd Pair: Pseudo-Italian Sports Bar and French Wine

    ​Let's face it: No matter how you dress or slice the meatballs (more on that below), if you have ESPN constantly streaming on monitors that hover above your bar and dining room, you are a sports bar -- even if you slap ristorante italiano onto the name of your restaurant. According to its web ... More >>

  • Dining

    April 21, 2011

    Capri in Spring

    Little restaurant outside town turns out spectacular Italian food.

  • Blogs

    March 29, 2011

    Hydrated Pasta, Hydrated Sauce

    ​A few weeks ago, I was making risotto for dinner, using the pre-hydration method, which I'm so fond of for weeknight cooking. As I drained the Arborio rice from its bath of Sierra Nevada Glissade Golden Bock, now cloudy with starch washed from the surface of the grains, I had an epiphany. T ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 25, 2011

    Yoga Fuel: Green Plum Kitchen Protein Trio

    ​First let me say YES, I realize this dish is 99.9 percent brown. The Protein Trio from Monica Pope's Green Plum Kitchen that I picked up at the Urban Harvest City Hall Farmers Market (Wednesdays 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.) might be a tad monochromatic, but it's healthy, light and flavorful, which makes ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 7, 2011

    Ingredient of the Week: Sepia

    clayirving​What is it? Sepias are cephalopods - in the same class as octopus and squid - and have the largest brain-to-body size ratios of all invertebrates, so they're pretty clever little creatures. While it's also known as a cuttlefish, the sepia isn't actually a fish, it's a mollusk. The ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 22, 2011

    In Defense of Bread

    ​Food critic Jeffrey Steingarten proposed that the world could be divided into two types of people: those who can enjoyably live on bread alone, and those who need all the other food groups for gastronomic pleasure. I am of the former group, but with one condition: The bread must have butter. ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 6, 2011

    College Pasta Redux

    ​The Holiday 15 hit you like a ton of bricks thanks to endless array of bitchy relatives insisting you try everything, right? If you're in resolution mode (e.g. getting slim enough to fit back in your Spanx), then you'll need to get back to basics with simple recipes. The fewer ingredients, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 28, 2010

    Ingredient of the Week: Thai Red Rice

    ​ What is it? There are several varieties of red rice. This particular bag, as far as I can tell, is just a medium grain rice with a red bran on the outside instead of brown. It is nuttier, sweeter and a bit chewier than white rice and contains more nutrients and fiber because it still contai ... More >>

  • Dining

    December 23, 2010

    Whole Hogg

    Hoggs n' Chicks serves creative pork and chicken dishes in Missouri City.

  • Blogs

    December 7, 2010

    Ingredient of the Week: Quinoa

    net_efekt ​What is it? Quinoa is often used in place of a grain, but it is actually a seed. The plant it comes from is called a goosefoot, and it is more closely related to beets and leafy greens than grains like wheat or barley. Quinoa is also unique in the fact that it contains more protei ... More >>

  • Dining

    May 27, 2010

    Mushrooms Gone Wild

    Wild mushroom and walnut tortellini at D'Amico's Italian Market Cafe

  • Dining

    April 29, 2004
  • Dining

    November 20, 2003

    Count on Fred

    Fred's Italian Corner

  • Dining

    December 6, 2001

    Pasta Perfect

    At Fabio's, the atmosphere and the Alfredo sauce are old clichés. But so is "Mom's apple pie," and it's still good.

  • Dining

    July 19, 2001
  • Dining

    April 6, 2000

    Hot Plate

    Café Express

  • Dining

    February 24, 2000

    Hot Plate

    Auntie Pasto's To Die For

  • Dining

    February 17, 2000

    Hot Plate

    Mingalone Italian Bar & Grill

  • Dining

    March 11, 1999
  • Dining

    December 17, 1998
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