Well, it’s always nice to be home. Then again, it has been a little over a month since I finished my time aboard the Matson containership, S.S. Kauai. My problem is re-acclimating to life ashore. Now that I feel reasonably decompressed, it’s time to get back to the business of food again–not that I haven’t been eating and cooking.
Actually, while I was shipped-out, I made it a point to do some “research.” While the Kauai was docked (of the many times while I was aboard) in Oakland, I investigated Rockridge, a neighborhood located three BART stops north of the downtown 12th Street station. There, I discovered an Italian-Iranian restaurant named, “I-Squared.” Here’s their website: http://www.i2squared.com/ Their food was fabulous enough that I dragged one of my shipmates back with me. No disappointments!
The one menu item that I walked away with the ambition of making at home was their fesenjoon. Imagine a chicken dish built around crushed walnuts, pomegranate paste and served over saffron basmati rice. Very exotic and tasty! If you happen to be in the Rockridge neighborhood of North Oakland, I highly recommend dining there. Chef Nory Madjlessi is a genius and a very warm host.
When I came back home last month, one of the first things I made for Margaret was fesenjoon. Admittedly, what I ended up making suffered a number of twists–in order to match my memory of Nory’s creation. That called for a bit of online research and a fair bit of modification to suit my unwillingness to spend more than one or two hours in the kitchen. Now, if I only manage to finish writing down the recipe… Very soon, I hope!