Orange County restaurant

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Honestly, if you’d like to become the hit of the next party you are invited to, make my French Sandwich. You’ll meet all kinds of new friends this way because everyone at the party will come up to you, give you accolades for your French Sandwich, and then will undoubtedly, ask you for the recipe. A that point, feel free to take all the credit, or, simply direct them to my blog:)

It’s a very easy recipe to make. This is all you’ll need:

Start by thawing (according to package instructions) 2 sheets of prepared puff pastry, bringing them to room temperature. My market carries Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets in the freezer section. Each package contains 2 sheets of pastry, just the right amount for this recipe.

Each sheet must be rolled out to fit a 12″ x 17″ sheet pan. To do that dust your work surface lightly with flour.

Unfold a single sheet of pastry, lay it over the floured surface and then lightly dust the pastry and your rolling pin with more flour. Take care not to use too much flour or it will dry out the pastry and give it a dull appearance.

Now, go preheat your oven to 400°F.

Spray your sheet pan generously with cooking spray, then check to see that you have rolled the pastry out sufficiently to fit your pan, allowing a bit of excess as well.

Next, set the pan aside and fold the dough over in half.

Then, carefully slide the folded puff pastry onto 1/2 of your greased sheet pan,

Unfold the pastry dough so that it covers the entire surface of the pan and allows the excess dough to drape over all 4 sides.

Next you’ll need a jar of coarse ground mustard. I prefer and highly recommend, Grey Poupon Country Dijon. Whatever you do, please don’t use classic yellow mustard, it just won’t be the same.

Cover the bottom of the pastry dough with a thin layer of mustard. This will consume about 2/3rds of an 8 oz. jar of mustard.

The next thing you’ll need is about a half pound of paper-thin sliced Genoa Salami.Purchase this in the Deli section of your supermarket and ask them to slice it as thin as possible without shredding it. Please don’t buy a prepackaged bag of salami, it too will just not be the same! That’s because TEXTURE is so important in food preparation. If your Genoa Salami is too thick it will be difficult to bite into this delectable appetizer, and a thicker salami will produce an altogether different texture, resulting in a different taste.

However, I did recently discover that Costco sells this package of gourmet sliced meats. One of the 3 types of meat in the package is very thinly sliced Genoa Salami that does work well in my French Sandwich.

Next, cover the entire surface of the pan with overlapping rows of salami.

Now, grate 1 pound of Pepper Jack Cheese.

and sprinkle it evenly over the salami.

Roll out the second sheet of puff pastry dough just as you did the first, making sure it is slightly larger than the size of the pan. Fold it in half and carefully slide it over half of the pan, allowing the excess dough to drape over the sides.

Unfold the dough so that it covers the entire surface of the pan.

Using your fingers, roll the excess pastry dough up and over, and pinch it together along the inside edge of the pan.

Using a fork, press down firmly on the edges to seal the 2 layers of pastry dough together. You want to insure that they do not separate and open during the baking process.

Now, make yourself an egg wash. Do this by beating 1 egg and 1 tablespoon of water in a small bowl until incorporated. Using a pastry brush, lightly cover the pastry dough with a thin layer of egg wash. The egg wash will ensure that the pastry will brown nicely and have a lovely golden color when baked.

Place the French Sandwich in the center rack of the oven, preheated to 400° F, and bake for about 20 minutes or until your French Sandwich is puffy and golden brown, the pastry fully cooked and the cheese nice and melty.

Using a long spatula, immediately transfer the fresh-out-of-the-oven French Sandwich onto a large cutting board that is at least as big as the French Sandwich. The cutting board will be your serving platter as well.

With a very large and long cleaver/knife, cut the French Sandwich on the diagonal into small, bite-sized triangles.

Serve hot to your very happy guests. I guarantee, there will be no leftovers!

Orange County restaurant - Recipes

Find the Nearest Slapfish

Our goal at Slapfish is to get people to eat more seafood. There's a seafood deficiency in the U.S. If we can make it fun and sexy again, hopefully we can get people to eat more of it.

It's good for you, and it can be very sustainable.

It can be incredibly sustainable, and I think that people are afraid. There's a lot of sensationalism in the media about contaminated seafood ? mercury and this and that. It's scaring people away from eating seafood. We're trying to cut through the noise and bring people back to Real American Seafood.

Slapfish takes the fine dining mantra and puts it into a fast casual model. It was designed so that anyone can step in and run a seafood business. Featured on The Cooking Channel and voted OC Weekly's Best Seafood Restaurant, Slapfish offers socially responsible, chef-driven seafood recipes at affordable fast casual prices.

2 | Avila’s El Ranchito

Must Order: Blackened Mahi Taco

This family-owned restaurant has been a staple in the OC community since 1966. With mouthwatering family recipes bringing an authentic taste of Mexico to Southern California, Avila’s El Ranchito continues to tantalize the taste buds of its beloved patrons. Everything on the menu shines, but the blackened mahi taco with with cabbage and chipotle sauce is to die for!

Locations: 13 SoCal locations

Native Foods X Support + Feed

Native Foods is working with Support + Feed, a non-profit charitable organization and brainchild of Maggie Baird (mother of pop stars Billie Eilish and Finneas), to help feed people in need this summer.

Support + Feed provides nourishing, plant-based meals for children and families, seniors, homeless and domestic abuse shelters, food banks, and LGBTQ+ centers in marginalized communities.

For more information, click here or visit supportandfeed.com .

Do you want to help us feed those in need? Wonderful! Simply select a donation amount from the "Support + Feed" category when placing your online order, or let a team member in-store know that you would like to donate.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

China Garden changing ownership

We just ate there for dimsum lunch today, and noticed a sign in the windows indicating that the new owner will be "VIP Seafood Restaurants, Inc." Sorry to see the ownership change! Even with the splashier Capital Seafood opening up recently, China Garden was still my go-to place for dishes like geoduck and peking duck (no relation).

I guess the writing was on the wall, with the smaller crowds, and the new 10% discounts to try to entice diners. And it's not like the business is out of business, yet. Hopefully VIP Seafood Restaurants is the same entity that owns VIP Harbor Seafood in West Los Angeles, a second floor eatery off Barrington and Wilshire, that was similarly serviceable, if not in the same league as the outposts throughout Monterey Park and Rowland Heights.

And hopefully they try competing on quality, rather than price. Irvine's Capital is certainly more vulnerable on the quality and authenticity score.

Orange County restaurant - Recipes

A hundred years ago the table land called El Modena was covered with sagebrush and cactus webbed with sheep and cattle trails. Early in 1886 a town was laid out in the brush country and named Modena, but to eliminate confusion with another town an El was added to the name. The town was soon settled by colonists from the middle west who belonged to a "Society of Friends", more commonly called Quakers.

A meeting house was needed and in June 1887 work was started on a building located on a two and one-half acre plot on Chapman Avenue donated by four members of the congregation. The whole community co-operated in the project and on August 15, 1887 a meeting house was dedicated.

David Hewes, though not a Quaker, donated a large church bell. The building stood high and conspicuous in a land that had few trees or houses. The friends were newcomers to California and were not acquainted with its unusual weather. Their new building was only one month old when a desert wind called a Santa Ana roared across the open country and pushed the building from its foundation.

The building collapsed and the heavy bell crashed to the ground and completely wrecked the structure. When the wind died down the friends surveyed the wreckage and with no hesitation cleared the debris and started building again. The second church was built on the lines of the first but was fortified against the weather. For ninety years it stood as a monument in the heart of El Modena.

Over the years new voices were heard in the community. Spanish became the common language. The friends outgrew their venerable home and in 1967 moved to another meeting place a half-mile away. For nine years their old home stood abandoned until Javier and Nora Moreno rescued the landmark. They were natives of the community and with nostalgia and long experience in serving tasty food, they purchased the property and added a touch of Mexico.

The old church building was not changed but was blended into surroundings where the food and hospitality of early California can be enjoyed.