Lent has officially begun. Gluttons and alcoholics alike partied hardy yesterday in celebration of Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday for all you non-Francais speaking people. I, too, ate like a king last night. A local Coronado chef, young Billy Gilchriest, treated me to the most spectacular food at his restaurant Tartine. The elegant restaurant specializes in French cuisine so I was right on par with my Mardi Gras celebration.
Billy was so generous and attentive–he told me and my friend, Annie, not to order anything, that he’d just bring us out dishes. He brought us four courses and had us stuffed to the bones by the end if the night. He also came out with each dish to explain what it was and which ingredients were fresh from the farmers market (I know him from the Coronado’s farmers market and did a short story on him. Click on his name in the first paragraph to check it out.)
GRILLED SHRIMP ON TOP OF SLICED AVOCADOS, ORO BLANCOS, AND ARUGULA WITH A KIWI GLAZE ON TOP
HOMEMADE GNOCCHI WITH ROASTED PARSNIPS AND ARUGULA PESTO
SALAD OF GREENS WITH BLOOD ORANGE, BEETS, SLICES FUJI APPLES, HERB GOAT CHEESE, AND WALNUTS
BOWL OF STEAMED MUSSELS, CLAMS, SHRIMP AND FISH WITH RED BELL PEPPERS AND A TOMATO-BASED BROTH WITH TOASTED BREAD FOR DIPPING
In short, it was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Billy really took time to think of the menu (it’s constantly changing depending on what’s fresh at the market) and he cooks his food with love. The first course-shrimp was out of this world. I love food with a grill taste and his pairing of avocado with the grapefruit WITH the shrimp–ingenious!
Anyway, I digress. The point of this post is “giving up.” Lent is here and with lent comes the act of “giving up.” I was raised in a religious household and have observed lent for as long as I can remember. Admittedly, I love the challenge of the lenten season. 40 days (although, this is where the confusion sets in. Count from Ash Wednesday to Easter on your calendar, you’ll get more than 40 days. This is because Sunday is not included in lent, technically making it a “cheat” day!) of depriving yourself of something you love.
I’ve had plenty of friends give up Facebook, but I need it as a means of communication, as sad as that is. I’ve given up chocolate before (do you realize how hard this is for women who get chocolate cravings AT LEAST once a month?!) and ice cream. This year, I’m giving up coffee. Yes, coffee. I’ve done it before, senior year of college. It’s HARD. I need my coffee like I need sleep. It’s essential, it puts me in a good mood, it gets me going! Oh, yeah, and it’s GOOD.
I’ll have to supplement my caffeine needs in other ways–apples, chocolate, tea. You can bet your bottom dollar I’ll be visiting Starbucks often for these things…
And this just in–you can get them blended!! OMG, totally trying one today in an attempt to comfort my poor body from it’s coffee deprivation.
Anyone else here follow the ways of Lent and give something up for 40 days?
*Note: Want to visit Tartine and taste some of Billy’s out-of-this-world dishes? Tartine is located on Coronado, on the corner of 1st and Orange Ave, by Ferry Landing. Tartine is also recognized for its decadent and crazy desserts and delicious coffees! A great date place!