Saturday, October 1, 2011


Wow, it's been a while.  In the time since my last post, I ate at several good places while traveling on business, including a surprisingly good Cuban sandwich with pitch perfect Roasted Tomato soup here and an absolutely sublime Butternut Squash soup and ridiculously good Warm Sticky Toffee Pudding Cake here.  And, then there's the night my dinner was pretzels and Swedish fish in Philly's odious Terminal F, and the time I was so happy to find a half eaten bag of popcorn in my car while stuck in traffic for an hour that I actually said aloud, to no one, "Yay!"  Oh, and then one night I passed up dinner at Dinosaur with my family to drink water and meet members of my federal delegation.  Feast or famine.

Anyway ... last night, after other plans fell through, I scooped up the kids, and we headed over to Pomodoro on Monroe Ave.  We were supposed to meet up for dinner, but my husband was up against a deadline at work and kept texting his sliding ETA.  So, as we settled in to our cozy corner booth, we immediately filled the table with appetizers.

The kids love hummus and pita, and we ordered the hummus sampler (original, roasted red pepper, basil).  Pomodoro is owned by the Aladdin's folks, so their hummus is divine!  The plate was about the size of a turkey platter.  I love bruschetta, which was my choice.  Pomodoro's is served sort of dipping style, with the crostini in toast points around a lovely, bright red, fresh mini-mountain of tomatoes--all drizzled with sweet balsamic.  Very yummy!!  And, we also got their standard table delivery of bread with a small set of sides to mix-in the olive oil.  The cheese and roasted garlic cloves were a big hit at our table.

So, as we plowed through our apps, playing Hangman, Dr. Who alphabet, and other assorted games, it became evident from the ever-sadder texts that my husband was still a ways off.  I ordered the kids' dinners.  Pepperoni pizza off the children's menu for him and for her--my menu diva--I ordered off the menu totally:  penne pasta tossed with butter, olive oil, cheese, topped with chicken.  They took this request in complete stride.  Wonderful!!  And, then, about 10 minutes after I ordered their meals, my texted clearance to order our dinners came through:  penne pasta with roasted peppers and broccoli in vodka sauce for me; ahi tuni Cajun with fresh mango guacamole and pomegranate gastric over jasmine rice for him.  Timing is everything; he literally walked in the door as his plate was set down.

My daughter dug into her pasta and gave me a full-mouthed thumbs up, proclaiming, "This chicken is really, really good."  (She ate the leftovers for breakfast, of course.)  My son ate 3 pieces of pizza nonstop--always a good sign.  Before describing my meal, I'll share that the weather turned yesterday from a summer-like lead in to autumn to full on fall: cold, damp, dark.  What was set before me last night was a huge bowl of warmth:  perfectly cooked penne in a glistening, rich vodka sauce.  My guess is that the broccoli in the this dish may have actually been broccolini--since the penne was spiked with firm slices of thin stalks as well as crowns.  The broccoli(ni) was cooked just right and balanced the soft strips of roasted red peppers.  In comparison, my husband's plate looked minimalist.  I'm not a tuna fan (more of a tuna enemy).  He loved it, but after eating half of his, he ate two slices of pizza (joined by my daughter, who ate half of another) and some of my pasta.  I'm guessing the chill outside called for something more substantial.

By this point, we had been there so long that the kids had fallen asleep on the warm, softly lit, cushy banquette.  So, my husband and I caught up on things and ordered take-out dessert: carrot cake and red velvet cake.  My daughter gives the red velvet a 10 on a 20 scale and a 7 for the carrot cake.  Dessert would not be their strong point, then.  My son has a 36 point scale, apparently, but got sent to his room when we got home for reasons unrelated to our dinner, so he still hasn't had any of the leftovers.  Mu husband dug into the Moonstruck truffles that were to be a gift for the party that got canceled.  Such is life, always a window opening when a door is closed by a broken hot water heater (long story).

With all that food, a diet coke, milk, orange juice, we walked out for about $118 including tip, and no one charged us for nap time!

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