Monday, November 26, 2012

In And Around Town On The Move - Literally

Things have been pretty hectic here at In and Around Town.  Two weeks ago we were down in the Bahamas enjoying a little fun in the sun (when we weren't dodging some rain) and diving in the beautiful turquoise waters.  This past week, in the midst of having a fantastic Thanksgiving, we have been packing our little hearts out.  That's right: In and Around Town is leaving Beacon Hill and moving to the greener (and bigger) pastures of Charlestown!

Our Beacon Hill condo has been home to me since October 2006, and my first place after law school.  Needless to say, I am very attached!  When I moved in, it was just Holly (the dog) and I, and the 576 square feet, soaring ceilings and 1 bedroom were perfect!  At the time, I did not spend much time in the kitchen, so the small size did not bother me at all (read: lots of take-out!).

First side - I am sure you are admiring the extensive counterspace!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope everyone has a fantastic Thanksgiving.  I will be heading to the North Shore to a family friend's house for the holiday, which will also pass as a mini reunion of some of my closest friends - I cannot wait!  We are in charge of bringing an appetizer, which I am sure will be recapped here soon :)

If you are look for some last minute dish ideas, here are some good ones:

Vanilla Apple Sauce
Pumpkin Muffins
Honey Yeast Rolls
Hazelnut Pecan and Cranberry Bread
Homemade Oreo's!
Also, if you are in need of a pie and don't want to make one from scratch, definitely be sure to check out Pie in the Sky.  Since November of 1993, Boston's finest bakers have rallied together to make and donate thousands of pies that over 500 volunteers sell to family and friends.  Each pie is only $25 and totally delicious.  The $25 provides enough money for a week's worth of home-delivered meals to a Community Servings client.  This is definitely a great cause around the holidays.

Keep safe and enjoy the Holiday!

What are you doing for Thanksgiving?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

M3 - a Different Type of Southern in Davis Square

There always seems to be trends in new restaurant openings in Boston.  Recent years have seen a bunch of Mexican spots popping up, but the ones I'm most excited for are the Southern-inspired locations.  Having been to many of these, including Tupelo and Sweet Cheeks, when our friends G and J wanted to check out M3 (aka, Meat n' Three) with food hailing from Nashville, who was I to say no?

Beer Can Hen - How Cool?!
Located off of Davis Square, we arrived at around 7:30 on a weekday night and were fortunate to be sat straight away.  With an eclectic mix of decor dominated by chalk board walls with the specials of the day and other helpful info (like directions to the bathroom and the wait list) it's a fun but relaxed vibe.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Kitchen Dinner - What Do You Have On Hand?

While I am away enjoying some fun in the sun, I'd thought I post some good home recipes.  This is one that I threw together with a random assortment of ingredients I had on hand.  When I first started cooking, I always followed a recipe pretty closely, rarely deviating from what someone else suggested I do.  Recently, however, I have become more comfortable cooking in the kitchen and have been able to look at a recipe and use it for inspiration.   

When it came time for dinner on a weekday night, I knew we had tons of things in our kitchen.  Not wanting to just add more to the fridge, I decided to grab some fresh ingredients from our CSA and others from the freezer and pantry and told Nick we were having "garbage dinner!"  He was not necessarily excited by this statement.

Whats on this plate?!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Pumpkin Snickerdoodles

When it comes to Sesame Street, Cookie Monster is by far my favorite character.  I think he's a hoot, and the fact that he and I share an extreme love of cookies doesn't hurt!  When Nick and I were heading up to Lake Winnipesaukee for the weekend, I thought some delicious fall cookies would make a great addition.  When I stumbled on Pumpkin Snickerdoodles I knew these would be perfect!

Pumpkin Snickerdoodles
The Necessities (adapted from Pennies on a Platter)

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Daedalus - Amazing Rooftop in Harvard Square

After running the Tufts 10k (I finished in just about an hour, which was pretty good for me!) I decided it was time to treat myself.  Nick and I headed to Harvard Square with the intention of finally indulging in Mr. Bartley's Burgers, but good intentions do not always make for good plans.  Mr. Bartley's was sadly closed on the holiday, so Nick and I wandered on.  After a little thinking, Nick and I stopped in at Daedalus, a bar and restaurant a bit off the Square.  Having seen people on the roofdeck we decided to take advantage of the sunshine and head on up.  With heaters nearby, there was plenty of warmth.

Roof Deck!
Shortly after some coffee and diet cokes (I could not make up my mind) we looked forward to some food.  I naturally went with the classic bacon burger with Cheddar cheese.  I was in a burger type of mood (shocking, I know.)  For $10.95, this was a pretty good burger - juicy with loads of flavor.  This definitely gives some competition to the higher priced burgers!

Nick went with the Cuban Sandwich, made with roasted pork and ham, chipotle mayonnaise, dill pickles, onions and Swiss cheese on grilled ciabatta bread.  This sandwich was jammed packed with delicious components and flavors and made for a great Cuban.  The melted cheese and grilled bread were the perfect finishing touch to the sandwich.

Cuban Sandwich
Having never heard of Daedalus, I was pleasantly surprised by the atmosphere and the food.  With so many other restaurants in Harvard Square getting loads of press, Daedalus sneaks in under the radar.  The roof deck alone warrants future return trips, however, the food will bring me big back sooner than roof deck weather!

Have you been to any surprising restaurants lately?

Daedalus on Urbanspoon

Monday, November 5, 2012

Toscano - Beacon Hill Italian

The past two years I have run the Tufts 10k as a challenge and as motivation to keep running throughout the year (since a 10k is not something I can just "wing!")  The race is always the Monday of Columbus Day weekend, so the Sunday before I choose to have a throwback to my high school field hockey days and have myself a little pasta party.  Not in the mood to cook and not wanting to travel far, Nick and I took our chances and walked into Toscano and somehow managed to grab two seats at the bar.  I can say that you generally need reservations to get a table, but this must have been our lucky night!

We took our seats and decided to order a couple glasses of wine.  Their glasses, however, are actually quartinos: 250ml, or a third of a bottle.  These are definitely a solid pour!  The quartinos range from about $8 to $15 - a lower price point compared to most restaurants, especially given the amount of wine you receive.

Shortly after our wine was served, the bartender brought us a delicious variety of bread, including a hearty Italian and focaccia.  Toscano's provides some of the most delicious balsamic vinegar for dipping - I think we asked for an extra helping of bread just to taste more of the vinegar!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Zip Lining at Gunstock Mountain - Scary Fun!

Recently, Nick and I were up in New Hampshire for a wedding.  Since the main event was actually on Sunday afternoon, we and some of Nick's family friends had an entire weekend to enjoy what the Lake Winnipesaukee area had to offer.  Turns out, Gunstock Mountain Resort is also home to the longest Zipline Tour in the continental US!  With amazing views in the heart of the granite mountains (seen at 65 mph), and October being peak leaf peeping, we knew this was going to be a fun time.

Mulling the liabilities...
Our group of 9 arrived at the mountain about 15 minutes before our 11AM appointment, checked in and waited to get suited up!

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