The Fat Radish Review

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The ambiance is wonderful. I absolutely adore the rustic decor, the white bricks &  the harvest tables. I love everything about the place. The server was friendly &  helpful. The food was presented beautifully. Unfortunately, the food was nothing spectacular.
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They give you a complimentary plate of radishes, which were surprisingly bitter & spicy. No one at the table liked it.

The most talked about item in the menu is the Scotch egg, which is an egg wrapped with sausage & deep fried. It comes with a delicious spicy mustard & cornichons (baby gherkin pickles). At $10  for one egg cut in half,  it is a pricey appetizer, but one that was highly recommended. It was not oily whatsoever. The taste of the sausage & egg was mild. I was expecting it to be more flavorful, but I would still recommend you try it at least one.
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The pea pot pie had a flakey outer crust which was good. The filling of snap peas &  green peas were flavored very lightly & it was on the sparse side.

The kale Caesar salad was fresh. It came with crunchy croutons & 2 pieces of salty anchovies. This was a good started.

The special appetizer of chicken thighs was pan seared giving it a slightly crunchy skin. The  chicken was tender. This was a good choice, but it was a special & they change according to what is in season.
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The pork chop with couscous was on the dry side. I wouldn’t recommend this at all.

The carrot appetizer was just a bunch of mixed carrots cooked blandly. The larger carrots weren’t completely cooked, which made for really crunchy carrots.

The curried monkfish was cooked well, with a spicy kick to the flavors. We liked this dish.

Overall, the experience was just okay. We felt the food fell short of the rave reviews. The ambiance &  service were excellent though.

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Asian Marinated Baked Chicken Recipe

This was a really fast & easy recipe to follow. I only marinated the chicken for 30 minutes (while I prepped the broccoli & mushroom) & it turned out very tasty.

Asian Marinated Baked Chicken Recipe adapted from Chow.com

Chicken Ingredients:
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger (I omitted this)
6 cloves minced garlic
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 pounds chicken thighs (removed skin & fat)

Veggie Ingredients:
10oz white mushrooms
1 lb broccoli crowns
1 package Beech mushrooms
2 tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
5 cloves finely chopped garlic

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F.
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Place everything except the chicken in a zip-lock bag & combine.
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Remove the skin & fat from the chicken. Wash & pat dry with paper towel.

Throw the chicken into the zip-lock bag & lay flat. Flip the bag around after 15 minutes to ensure the other side gets marinated as well.
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While you are waiting, wash & cut the broccoli & mushrooms. Put into a foil pan. Drizzle with olive oil & mix thoroughly. Sprinkle with sea salt & black pepper. Then, drizzle balsamic vinegar over everything. Sprinkle chopped garlic on top. Put into oven & bake for 25 minutes.
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After 30 minutes of marinating the chicken, pour all the contents into a pan. Ensure the chicken is in one layer.
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Bake the chicken for 20 minutes, then flip them over & bake for another 20 minutes until the internal temperature reached 165 degrees F.
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Pour the chicken sauce into a bowl. Use a spoon to skim off all the oils & fat. Serve chicken with broccoli & mushrooms with the sauce on the side.
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Enjoy!

Cannelle Patisserie Review

CANNELLE PATISSERIE
75-59 31st Ave.
Queens, NY 11370
(Jackson Heights & East Elmhurst vicinity within Waldbaum’s mall)
At 77th St & 31St Ave
(Abundant Free Parking)

I found this place through a friend’s check-in. That’s one of the best ways to find good eats.

So I came here with my mom for the very first visit. GPS told me I was at my destination, but all I saw were housing & nothing more. I was confused. Perplexed, I searched on my smart phone to make sure I had the correct address because sometimes my smart phone wants to act dumb. :-/ I had the correct location, so how come I didn’t see anything?!? I decided to turn right to explore. Lo & behold, I had found the strange Waldbaum’s shopping center parking lot. You would never guess an amazing patisserie existed here, but you have to take my word for it, it does!
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The simple wood design with a large window makes the outside look very unassuming. We walked in & it’s a very casual place. To your left are scattered tables & a small counter with bar stools, & straight ahead on your right are a few more tables.
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Everyone lines up to order at the counter with their brightly colored displays of their drool-worthy confections & baked goods. They have more than desserts here. They offer breakfast pastries, sandwiches, quiches, cakes, tarts & even French macarons. Your eyes will have a field day with all the offerings, which can be quite intimidating if you don’t know what it is.
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I went with the counter person’s recommendations. We tried the apple strip & an almond strip. Mom & I only wanted a snack before heading to dinner. Both were flakey, not too sweet, slightly buttery, but not overwhelmingly buttery, & amazingly light & crisp. We were surprised because many times French pastries can feel so heavy. These were perfect for snacking.
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I returned a week later with a bunch of friends so that I could try more items. This time I ordered the guava danish, peach tart, Napoleon & grilled chicken sandwich. I also took 2 almond croissants home (they ran out of the chocolate). Okay, so I went a little crazy on my second visit, but in my defense, there were just so many delicious options that I had to try them all. *sigh*
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The guava danish looked so delicious & it was! Again, light, flakey & the filling was not too sweet as well. It was a great start. Hubby was hungry, so he went for the freshly made grilled chicken sandwich with blue cheese. Everything was made to order & they make their own breads on premise, so this was a treat for hubby. He loved the sandwich since all the flavors worked wonderfully together.
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Next, came the peach tart & I have to tell you, it was AH-MAZING! The tart crust had just enough crunch but melded together well with the almond filling & the natural sweetness of the peach. Each bite was better than the first. Hubby & I were fighting over the last bite. While our backs were turned, hubby’s best friend grabbed all the crumbs. It was THAT good. This was our absolute favorite of all the pastries. Hubby’s sister came late & asked us what was good. She took a bite of the peach tart, got on line & came back with the full-sized 6″ tart to take home!
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Everything else after couldn’t compare to the peach tart, but they were still very well-made & tasty. The Napoleon was very standard with the puff pastry layers, the cream filling & the fondant topping with the tooth picked design. It was not outstanding, but it was still good.
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The almond croissants were devoured the next day. Again, as with all the other pastries, it had flakey, buttery, light dough with a filling that is not cloyingly sweet. It was the perfect breakfast. It filled you up without making you feel gross & heavy for the rest of the day.

I will definitely be making another trip there to try more of their items. I heard through a friend the French macarons are pretty good & they even took their special custom order for a bridal shower, even though they don’t normally do that with the macarons.

This is a great spot for great food & to hang out with a friend.

Just don’t talk or laugh too loudly because the older patrons might start ranting, raving & cursing at you & challenge you to a fight outside because SHE is a black belt. Yes, you heard right, an older Filipina woman threatened us because she thought we were loud & inconsiderate. She never once asked us to keep it down; she straight up started yelling at us & caused a major scene. Her friend never once turned around to look at us because I suspect she was extremely embarrassed by her friend. True story.

I hope never to have that happen again. I had to console a gf after the incident. She was whimpering & crying in the corner. Her life is forever changed by this turn of events. Semi-true story.

Visit Cannelle Patisserie. You won’t regret it.

Purbird Review

PURBIRD
82 6th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(718) 857-2473

Purbird, located in the North Slope area of Brooklyn, was highly recommended to me by my brother & SIL, so I had to go try it. I’ve been back twice already & I love it more every time. It’s not a fancy place. You order at the counter & they bring it to your table. It’s as simple as that.

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Their specialty is the Amish farm-raised chicken, so you must order anything with the chicken. The staff are all super friendly & helpful if you’re not sure what to order. Everything is very affordable & they make a killing with their take-out business. Their best seller is the Chicken Breast Sandwich which comes with grilled chicken breast, avocado, turkey bacon, lettuce, tomato & mayo on a toasted roll.

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I ate the Chicken Breast Sandwich both times. I couldn’t help myself. It was good & I wanted more. The chicken is moist & tender, the toasted roll adds a nice crunchy/soft bite, the avocado adds creaminess, and anything with the word (turkey) bacon in it makes everything taste better!

If you don’t mind spicy, I’d suggest a side of the Jalapeno Mashed. It’s their mashed potatoes with a jalapeno puree. The jalapeno kick is amazing. I, reluctantly, had to share with my friend. I tried my best to eat only 50% of the dish, but it was so tasty that I think I entered the 60% territory. I’m so sorry, but I just couldn’t help myself.

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They also have a sweet potato mash which is just as good. It is very creamy & smooth. I even scooped a dollop right into my sandwich. I have a bad habit of mixing my foods together to create a different taste/texture. For example, I’ve been putting chips into my sandwich since 1995, which was way before Bobby’s (Flay) Burgers came out with their Crunchified burgers. He ripped off my idea. Yep. What a jerk! I digress.

The creamed spinach was a really fresh & tasty side as well.  

I love this place. It’s good, inexpensive, fresh food, done right. I’m sure you’ll love it, too.

Taverna Kyclades Review

TavernaKycladesMenu
>TAVERNA KYCLADES

33-07 Ditmars Blvd
Astoria, NY 11105
(718) 545-8666

Hubby & his family & I came here for dinner on the recommendation by a friend who lives nearby. We almost didn’t wait for a table because of online reviews mentioning wait times of an hour or more. SIL decided to put our names down anyway & was informed of a 30 minute wait. This place was completely packed, inside & out. The Greek restaurant across the street was empty & they were just standing around swatting flies. I felt bad for them.

As luck would have it, we got a table within 15 minutes for the 5 of us. Thankfully, it was inside since it was a bit chilly sitting outside. The inside is smaller than it appears but we had enough room. I read plenty of reviews online for Taverna Kyclades before we ordered, so we made our choices based on them.

We started with the large Peasant Salad which comes with 2 giant pieces of Feta cheese. This was more than enough for 5 people. We had some left over. There were chunks of tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, peppers & Kalamata olives with a nice dressing. This was a healthy starter.

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Large Peasant Salad

We also ordered a plate of the Tzatziki sauce. It doesn’t come with anything else but we used the complimentary bread that they give to each table & dipped it into the tzatziki. I need to first tell you that the bread they have is pretty amazing. They give you a whole baguette, cut in half. It comes warm & lightly drizzled in olive oil. The outside is nice & crisp, while the inside is tender soft. It is not chewy at all, which I love because chewy bread tends to make my jaw muscles tired. The tzatziki itself was delicious. I dipped everything into it. I could probably scoop the whole dish into my mouth & I’d be highly satisfied.

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Crispy & Tender Bread with Tzatziki Sauce

The absolute star of the whole entire meal would have to be the Grilled Octopus. The server brought the dish to the table, then proceeded to cut the octopus into smaller bites. The octopus was grilled perfectly. It was tender & had an amazing char-grilled flavor to it. It was seasoned with olive oil & lemon. And it came with slices of cucumbers. Everything worked with the octopus. I had to dip my bread into the lemony olive oil afterwards & it was divine. I’ve already forgotten about the tzatziki at this point. Octopus wins!

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Grilled Octopus – I wish they gave us all 8 tentacles!

Each entree comes with your choice of a side, so you don’t have to order anything extra.

Entree1: Stuffed Shrimp with Crabmeat – this came with 5 pieces (perfect for our table of 5). The shrimp was huge & it had a layer of crab on top. The crab was a little on the mushy side, but the shrimp was tasty. Hubby wasn’t that thrilled with this dish.

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Stuffed Shrimp with Crabmeat

Side1: Roasted Lemon Potatoes – this was white potatoes roasted in a lemony sauce. No one really liked this too much. The potatoes were very grainy & the lemon sauce didn’t wow our palate.

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Roasted Lemon Potatoes

Entree2: Grilled Chicken Kebob – this came with 5 pieces as well (how’d they know?!?). The chicken came in large chunks & they were moist & juicy. There were also grilled veggies (onions, tomato & peppers) that came on the plate, along with a side of tzatziki sauce. The veggies were nicely char-grilled & we were wishing there were more.

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Grilled Chicken Kebob

Side2: Beets – it was a plate of sliced beets cooked with a bit of chopped garlic. This was nothing fancy or special.

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Sliced Beets

Entree3: Branzino fish – Market Price at $28. We ordered a whole char-grilled European Sea Bass. We asked them not to de-bone the fish since MIL & FIL loves bones, heads & tails. The meat on the fish was flakey & tender. We added a squeeze of lemon juice to enhance the flavors.

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Branzino – European Sea Bass

Side3: Rice – fluffy & tasty yellow rice as a side. Again, the side wasn’t anything spectacular.

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Rice

We ordered just enough for 5 adults. Some of the portions are huge (like the salad), the rest were a decent portion. We finished off just about everything on our table. The bill came out to $135 after tax & tip. Not bad for feeding 5 very hungry adults (2 men & 3 women).

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I think we licked our plates!

This was definitely a satisfying meal. I’ll definitely come here again to try other recommendations like the scallops & clams. The food didn’t leave me in a food coma haze, which was a good sign. I was pleasantly full & feeling good since most of the food we had ordered was pretty healthy & not saturated in unknown fats & oils.