McAlpines, Herb Box, First Draft (Changing Hands), The Henry, Khyber Halal

30 Jun

Mom invited us over for tacos today. Her translation of tacos is flautas, typically made with a beef roast, but today she made them with chicken. She fries the corn tortillas and then bakes the filled flautas in the oven. It is a recipe she learned from her Mom, grandma Sutherland, when they lived in Yuma. The flautas are magical. Afterwards, we treated her and my bro Mike to dessert at McAlpines. Jack and I were recently there for lunch and we were impressed with the quality, environment and the price. Mike and I both enjoyed chocolate malts. Mom ordered the “Parisian” and Jack (not pictured) chose a hot fudge sundae.

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The service is friendly and it’s a wonderful place to go and cool off this summer for something sweet. Also you can buy vintage clothes. Jack picked up a green hawaiian shirt with yellow pineapples on it the last time we were there. Very Hawaii 5-0!

We went to see Chef today. If you’ve ever been at a crossroads in your life (I’m sure that has never been me haha) you will appreciate this movie. A great performance by Sofia Vegara. I really enjoyed the story. If you are into the food truck scene at all, you should also go and see this.

Speaking of movies, I recently bought a DVD set of I’m So Excited! It’s one of my favorite movies right now by director Pedro Almodóvar. I wanted to give a copy to my friend Rob in South Carolina and also I promised a copy to a friend at work.

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The director is a little out there so I’m going to have to give her a disclaimer. But most people know I’m pretty goofy so hopefully she expecting a movie from me that reflects that. 😉

Thursday we worked a half day so I decided to have lunch at Herb Box and see a movie at Camelview 5. I tried Avocado Love, which is avocado, arugula and fennel on whole grain toast.

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Often times when I eat out I feel like I need some kind of meat/chicken/fish protein, but at Herb Box I never miss it. It’s because everything they make there is fresh and seasoned so well. They know about acid/salt/bitter/sweet balance. Sometimes I get the Veggie Nosh which is a trio of a beet salad, hummus and chick pea/quinoa salad. They usually will substitute the tzatziki for hummus for me and it’s one of the first dishes I tried there that I fell in love with. Yes I use the love word a little too much when I talk about food. But there it is.

Jack has been grilling a lot since we moved back to Phoenix. The complex has a fancy gas grill that heats up quick. Recently he put some steaks on the barbie and they were amazing.

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He’s very photogenic, no?

On Saturday we made a trip to Bluewater Grill for lunch and it’s becoming one of my favorite places to eat because their seafood louie salad is substantial and fresh. I really like their louie dressing. The salad has shrimp, crabmeat, a variety of lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes and egg. Jack decided on oysters, and something from the lunch menu; white clam chowder and a shrimp louie salad.

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Did I mention he’s photogenic? lol

The lunch menu is very reasonable, so it’s a nice way to go if you are a newbie.

A parcel arrived from South Carolina last week with some goodies from Rob. He has been to many estate sales and is a great shopper. He also seems to know my size. Lookie lookie.

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I felt very glam in this dress. Kind of Audrey Hepburnish.

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This suit makes me feel like Katherine Deneuve (without the hat).

There was also an Asian style dress in my care package, and a stripey summer short sleeve sweater that reminded me of something that Liz Claiborne might have designed. Rob is the ultimate shopper. If you ever need a personal shopper and want to fly him out from Greenville, SC I’m sure he would be up for it. He can also remodel your kitchen, bathroom and put in a bamboo floor. His portfolio has recently grown so there’s a lot he can do that I’m not even aware of. A total professional, this one.

Last weekend I was with Mom, Mike and Cindy at First Draft having a iced coffee.Image

 

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I learned of Daniel Alarcón just recently and read his earlier book Lost City Radio. I enjoyed it so much that I had to order his latest novel. Changing Hands was happy to do this for me.

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Normally I don’t mention restaurants here unless they are local. I don’t think The Henry is local but I’m giving them a mention because their location at 44th Street and Camelback has beautiful architecture and I’ve had breakfast there twice now with my Dad and it has been very enjoyable. Here’s the inside of the place.

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They make a steel cut oatmeal that both Dad and I have tried and it’s very tasty.

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It comes with some type of chutney that is not too sweet.

Also I noticed they have avocado toast on their afternoon menu and I’ve asked them to put it on the breakfast menu, since I’m trying to go a little healthier these days. I’ll keep you posted on this.

Jack and I really enjoy middle-eastern food. Recently we tried Afghani food at Khyber Halal on 24th Street, just south of Indian School. It is very reasonable and fresh tasting. Since Jack is a big fan of lamb, he chose lamb shank and I tried the chicken briyani.

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It is a rice dish that comes with big chunks of chicken and is spicy. Thankfully it comes with a cucumber salad to cool you down. The staff is very friendly and will explain any dish to you. We also tried the hummus and it was delicious. We also brought home some baklava and I shared it with my friends at work and one of them said it’s the best he ever tried.  There was so much food we had leftovers for the next day, which makes us very happy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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