Going from the Ridiculous to the Sublime
I was really lucky and had wonderful friends come over and help me pack up my kitchen almost a week before I moved to my new house. And then when we moved, the kitchen stuff was buried under other stuff, so we had no pots, pans, dishes or utensils for another week. We grabbed meals where we could and had to eat out a lot. Pity.
Here’s a sampling.
Kind Bars worked for breakfast, sort of a healthy candy bar. The dark chocolate one with nuts really was my style. Failing that, we took a couple of trips to Surf Bagel for soul food (try the wonderful ice coffee, too), made the scene at Crystal twice (you cannot beat their omelets) and even showed up at Cracker Barrel, where I tried, once again to like scrapple and grits. No luck. But their bacon is phenomenal. And while waiting, we got to see lots of toys from our youth, which are now called either classic or antique, which is unsettling to say the least.
Lunch was easy. Since we’ve been to Lowes every single day for weeks for blinds, nuts and bolts, light bulbs, replacement fixtures, etc, we dined al fresco from the Lowes hot dog truck. Don’t laugh. For six bucks we got a hot dog with sauerkraut, a polish dog and two sodas. Frankly, it’s fast, easy and almost as good as dining at the ballpark.
Other luncheon options included wraps at WaWa (very fresh, actually) and splitting the scrumptious “Bobbi” sub at Capriotti’s. The sandwich is Thanksgiving dinner on a roll, and is totally memorable. We hauled out the paper plates for ham and cheese on Arnold sandwich rounds from Super G when we started feeling guilty about the calories in the “Bobbi.” When we stopped feeling guilty I left my mate at home installing curtain rods and went to Casa DiLeo North for great big New York pizza slices to go. When healthy eating called again I was sent to Panera for Pick Two half sandwiches and salads. I love how they print the caloric contents on the menu. Depending on what you select, you know exactly how guilty or smug you should be. Try the turkey avocado sandwich on sourdough bread, with a half a classic salad, and if you really want to be good, ask for an apple instead of chips.
After full days of packing and unpacking, breaking down cartons and doing the really hard work of filling the dumpster (old house) and figuring out where stuff goes (new house), dinnertime became the witching hour—- if we were still upright by 6:30 we could finally relax and have a meal. Carry-in (bring on the paper plates and plastic utensils!!!) came from Route One’s Bethany Blues one night. The ribs really travel well and their coleslaw is outstanding. The barbecue sauce is on the spicy side, and the baby back ribs were fall-off-the-bone delicious. Call ahead and you can pull in to park and they will bring dinner to you in the car. That was great for weary me.
Another night I had to be in downtown Rehoboth for a short meeting before dinner so I went over to Confucius on Wilmington Avenue for carry out. I took home an entire Peking Duck (pancakes, hoison sauce, and onions too) with their signature Schezuan green beans. It was a feast for two tired unpackers. If you’ve been to Confucius I am pretty sure you’re a fan; if you haven’t tried it, hurry down. It is an absolutely amazing restaurant with outstanding gourmet Chinese cuisine. Try the steamed dumplings and the whole crispy fish some time. Yum!
After almost two weeks of carry-out containers and brown paper bags we hollered uncle and finally went to have somebody wait on us. First came Mixx, where we ate at the bar, watching the lovely Ginger concoct some of the famous Mixx martinis. I love Mixx because they offer small plates as well as regular sized entrees. My favorite is the small plate Caesar salad, combined with the small plate Miso glazed rockfish. Stupendous! My spouse loves the appetizer portion of flash-fried calamari with their wonderful wedge salad. The Wednesday night special angus burgers are fab too, along with their small or large plate portions of the deviled short ribs.
By last Saturday night we were ready to come out of our self-imposed real estate exile and socialize with folks who weren’t realtors, movers, or settlement attorneys. We had a group of eight at the always-lively Pig and Fish on Rehoboth Avenue. I had the Sussex County tomato-based clam chowder—excellent, followed by the Grilled steak Baby Field Green Salad. The combination of steak grilled to order, over greens with candied pecans, crumbled gorgonzola, red onion and bacon, with lemon-thyme vinaigrette was divine. Other folks sampled the enormous portion of nachos with shredded chicken (super spicy!) and the Scallop Pasta, fresh fish platters and more. The menu is very diverse and you are encouraged to eat like a pig and drink like a fish. We did.
By this past Sunday, two full weeks into our dining out escapades, we did the big finish with brunch at the Blue Moon. Chef Lion Gardner outdid himself with amazing eggs Benedict with crab, and a decadent French toast Bread Pudding with bananas, walnuts, and syrup. Three of us shared it and I still felt very guilty. Let’s face it, brunch at the Blue Moon is a Rehoboth classic and it was a grand way to celebrate our move.
Then we went home, unpacked the dishes and flatware, hunted down the pots and pans, and got ready for domestic duty. Look at that, the new stove does work. Time for sensible eating at home. But it sure was a grand couple of weeks on Rehoboth’s spectacular culinary trail.