“Always let your meat rest.” – Dad

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” Context and memory play powerful roles in all the truly great meals in one’s life. ” – Anthony Bourdain

I wish I could take credit for this dish but I must give it up to my father who is one part of the reason I’m obsessed with all things food. Every now and then I get to enjoy a home cooked meal that reminds me of why I started Fond Media and The Fond Chef blog. I want to show how the act of preparing and eating good food is more than what you see. It’s trial and error, it’s history, it’s science,it’s beautiful, it’s love,comfort, nature, simplicity, and the surest way to humility!

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Papaya

“If we could give every individual the right amount of nourishment and exercise, not too little and not too much, we would have found the safest way to health. ”  – Hippocrates

Seared Porkchops with Onion Fig Reduction

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Pork chops and onion fig reduction

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Ingredients :
2 Pork chops
Salt and pepper
Cooking oil
1/2 white onion julienne
1 1/2 tbsp sugar
1 Lemon tea bag
1 1/2 cup water
4-5 brown turkey figs halved or mashed

Step 1.
Season pork with salt and pepper

Step 2.
Combine tea bags, sugar, figs and water bring to a boil and remove tea bags.

Step 3. Add onions and simmer on low heat until reduced to desired thickness stirring frequently.

Step 4.
Pan sear porkchops with cooking oil about 3-4min each side. Remove to serving plate and top with fig and onion reduction.

5 Important Dining and Dating tips

Some things are obvious like don’t chew with your mouth full, use proper cutting technique or even to remember to not slurp the last drops of creamy lobster bisque! But throughout my career and personal life so far I have gathered five things which I believe to be rising
in importance of our etiquette and respect for whomever we select to date.

5. Never disrespect your server.
This one should be obvious but something about paying for a meal or ordering in front of people makes some folk act down right mean. I’ve heard the nastiest most demeaning words come out towards servers. Any problem can be fixed in the kitchen without the attitude. Most of the time these uncouth people will only be satisfied with a complimentary meal or atleast a dessert. This behavior makes you look unstable (at the very least) instead of powerful .

4. Bring a freshener
I remember one of my first movie dates and the girl got up to grab what I thought was going to be popcorn. A few minutes go by and she returns with a smile on her face ” You want a pickle” she said? Why? Why WOULD I want a pickle? I never knew they even sold pickles! I use to like them but “NO THANKS”. They make your breath less than desirable and the kisses will be sour! Of course this is the part where she wants to lock lips! I always carry some sort of freshener for dates. Don’t worry about it too much. If something looks good eat it! As long as you make the attempt to cover any lingering smells you won’t offend anyone.

3. Don’t gawk

I’ve asked bartenders and servers about what they think is a big offense people make while on dates in restaurants and the consensus is gawking. According to them the wandering of the eyes is mostly a male trait. Atleast so blatantly (women are more sly with it). If someone takes time out their life to spend with you you owe them 100%attention (within reason). Make them feel like you really wanted their time and are happy to have it. Focus!

2. Thank you, Thank you
You can’t really say thank you enough on a date. Let the other person know you don’t expect but appreciate them paying for the meal, drink, dessert whatever it is be thankful!  It’s not sucking up, it let’s the other person feel appreciated and willing to experience more with you.

1. Respect the cuisine
If you have not selected the restaurant but have no special requirements by all means ORDER OFF THE MENU! Whoever wanted to take you to this nice restaurant wanted you to try something along the lines of what the establishment is known for not something off the kids menu. If your at an Indian restaurant make an attempt to order something ethnic. It’s Easier than you! Don’t order pork chops and then ask for ketchup ( I once had a server yell at my date for brutalizing Vietnamese cuisine). Thus is what I mean by respect the cuisine.

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“The fact is that it takes more than ingredients and technique to cook a good meal. A good cook puts something of himself into the preparation. He cooks with enjoyment, anticipation, spontaneity, and he is willing to experiment .” – Pearl Bailey

The other side of happy hour!

  First off let me say sorry for being away so long!  I’ve been hitting the gym hard as well as sampling the cuisine and nightlife. The rare occasion happened when me and a coworker both had the day off. We ended up at Lindey’s in the historic German Village in Columbus, OH. Although established in 1981 Lindey’s feels like you stepped into a 1950s upscale restaurant. Everything shines, leather seats, and the bartenders wear long sleeves and tucked in ties.

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Honey sriracha wings and truffle fries

Our sampling began with honey sriracha wings and truffle fries. This was my first time having truffle oil fries and although pleasing they were overshadowed by the wings. Under the sticky sweet glaze that didn’t drip off was the amazing crisp skin. The thing about these wings is they didn’t get soggy as they cooled!
For dinner I ordered Tempranillo red wine and beef carpaccio. My wine choice was based solely on the fact that I never seen Tempranillo on any other wine list in the area.

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Tempranillo is the dimunitive of the Spanish Temprano (“early”), a reference to the fact that it ripens earlier than other Spanish grapes. Tempranillo has low acidity and sugars so is often blended with merlot or cabernet to liven the flavor profile. The aromas and flavors can include plum, berries, tobacco, leather, and vanilla. I definitely get a berry aroma followed by a plum like flavor.

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Most people know I rarely eat beef but I have heard so much of this dish it’s been on my list for awhile now! The Italian version of sushi, beef Carpaccio, is thinly sliced beef marinated in olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper, topped with mushrooms, parmesan, and spicy arugula. So simple but so satisfying!

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Do like I did and take advantage of happy hour at various places to sample the atmosphere and goods for cheap and save money for dates and business dinners . Then when your ready for date night you are familiar with all the restaurants in the area.

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Pan seared Scallops and foie gras with butternut squash puree, fruit mostarda and microgreens

” Eating is not merely a material pleasure. Eating well gives a spectacular joy to life and contributes immensely to goodwill and happy companionship. It is of great importance to the morale. ”

– Elsa Schiaparelli Italian fashion designer

Lemon-Love

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Lemon Rosemary Pine Nut Tart, Pistachia Vera

  I love sweets, especially Lemon desserts, but my diet and budget don’t always allow for such delicacies as of late. You see these pictures were taken a week ago moments before I consumed this delicate lemon masterpiece. If thoughts of lemon meringue pie hit your taste buds please disregard the notion! This is another level entirely. The crust is blended with Pine nuts and Rosemary and has a salty crisp finish. The lemon curd is well balanced, refreshing and silky smooth. My personal favorite thing about this dessert is the candied Lemon rind in the center! I usually take them off to save with the last piece just so I can chew a couple seconds longer. This is a perfect marriage of stimulating ingredients and all I want is more!!! Is that a bad thing though? Rosemary does help alleviate upset stomachs and we know lemon to be an all purpose restorative. So I’m thinking next time I’ll get maybe four tarts instead of two and save them for freezing cold off days like today! – FC

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