Anyway, this past weekend Adam and I went to a new restaurant and a new-to-me restaurant that I would like to share with you all.
First up, new-to-me. There is a little sushi restaurant in a small strip mall about a 5 minute block from my house that I've always wanted to try. Hole in the wall restaurants both scare me and excite me. I know some of the best foods can be found in the least likely place, but it does make me a little weary to eat raw fish in a restaurant the backs up to an old Blockbuster. Thankfully, Shi-Ki was a hit.
I think that the best sushi is the kind without lots of sauces or fried elements. The fish should be the show stopper and it should be able to stand on it's own. At Shi-Ki the fish sings.
Adam and I split the Spicy Tuna Roll, the Red Snapper Roll, and a special Shi-Ki roll with eel. We also had the tuna nigiri. Everything was excellent. The food was delicious, the prices were right, and the service was outstanding. I'm so glad we ventured into new territory because now I have a new favorite sushi restaurant.
The next night (we eat out too much, I know), we walked to a new-to-Charleston restaurant, CO. CO is a new Vietnamese restaurant on King Street that specializes in pho and banh mi. Every since my experience with banh mi from Street Hero, I have been on the hunt for more. I absolutely love the freshness of the flavors that you find in a well made banh mi sandwich.
Our experience at CO was mixed. The restaurant had just had it's soft-opening the night before and it was packed. The service was fantastic, but the kitchen was extremely slow. We started off with the pork and crab spring rolls. They were excellent. The spring rolls contained lots of meat, but were not greasy at all. I couldn't get enough of the sauce. I really tried to dip every garnish in it for just one more taste.
For our entrees, I went with the Shrimp Banh Mi and Adam had a noodles dish. I wish I remembered the name of the dish, but I can't and I cannot find a menu online for CO.
The banh mi was good. Not great. If I had never had the banh mi from Street Hero, I may have liked it more, but I'm spoiled. The sandwich just didn't have the extra spice that would put it over the top. It also didn't help that I had a shrimp tail still intact inside.
Adam's noodle dish, however, was outstanding. I wish I could remember the name - started with a W, but if you go, I highly recommend it. I only could sneak a couple bites from Adam, but wish I could have more.
Like I said, the only real downside was the wait. It took about an hour for us to receive our entrees after ordering. This doesn't deter me from going back though. It's a new restaurant, I'll let it work out some kinks. And as I said before, the service was excellent.
I promise I don't eat out all the time. Sometimes I cook; especially lately with an influx of vegetables every week from our CSA with Pinckney's Produce.
Sunday I made a recipe that helped us go through our collards, turnips, and onions.
Collard Greens and Winter Root Soup via Simple Fresh Southern
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 ounces slab bacon or 3 strips thick-cut bacon, diced
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 cup) - Carly's note: used white onion
- 1 large yellow turnip, peeled and diced (about 2 cups)
- 2 small carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise, and cut into 1/2-inch-thick half moons
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 pounds collard greens (about 1 bunch), ribs removed, leaves finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed dried red chile flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 quart vegetable broth
- 1 14-ounce can white cannellini beans, drained
1) Pour the oil into a 4-to-6 quart Dutch oven or stockpot set over medium-high heat. When the oil shimmers, ad the bacon and saute until it has rendered some of its fat, about 3 minutes. Add the onion, turnip, carrots, and garlic, and cook, stirring, until the onions are softened and translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the collards a handful at a time, turning them until they wilt before adding more.
2) When all the collards have wilted (about 4 minutes) add the vinegar, salt, chile flakes, and black pepper. Add the vegetable stock, beans and 2 cups water, and cover the pot. When the soup comes to a boil, turn the heat to low. Simmer until the carrots and turnips are tender, about 30 minutes.
3) Season the soup to taste with salt and black pepper. Serve immediately or let cool to room temperature, cover, and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
MAKE THIS SOUP. It was delicious, helped me work my way through our CSA box, and is great for leftovers.
So, are you hungry yet? I'm ready to go back to Shi-Ki for dinner tonight. :)