Flashback Friday – Winter 2018 NYC Restaurant Week

Today is the last day of NYC Restaurant Week and after reviewing menus and reviews, I was not impressed with the options that were offered this season. Therefore, I was considering skipped this season’s restaurant week. However two of my friends wanted to do restaurant week lunch and dinner. So after getting my arm twisted, I ended up eating a really good lunch at Cut by Wolfgang Puck in Lower Manhattan. My friend wanted to eat there and so I joined her. The service at this restaurant was really good and very accommodating.

For $29, my lunch prix fixe included the following: goat cheese ravioli, crispy quail salad and empire apple crumble.

For dinner, I decided to use my $100 gift card I won at last year’s American Cancer Society Taste of Hope event to eat from Massoni, an Italian/Asian casual fusion restaurant. Service was not par and food was not what I had expected. Furthermore the waiter was terrible, he didn’t know how the food was made and screwed up people’s orders. He suggested items for the $42 prix fixe, which was a bad idea because everything was salty. The waiter too responsibility for his mistake and gave me a free drink and a side dish of squash.

In addition, I took advantage of the happy hour $8 wines until 7pm. I had a Falanghina/fuedi di san gregorio 2014, a white wine and a Barbera/pico maccario 2015, a red wine.

For the $42 salty three course prix fixe dinner, I ordered Biriyani balls, Brussels sprouts pizza, and Snickers cannoli. Let’s put it this way, the cannoli was the best dish out of the three. The first two dishes were so salty that I couldn’t finish it, my friend shared the appetizer with me and I took leftover Brussels Sprouts pizza home.

By far Massoni was probably the worse restaurant week meal I have had and I used the remaining balance on the gift card to order more food to see if their regular menu was better….

My friend ordered the salmon and it was supposed to have potatoes and leeks. Let’s just say the dish was a disappointment because it not only had too much dill but it was salty with very little potatoes and leeks.

If it was not for the gift certificate I would not have eaten at this restaurant. I believe the food needs more work, I have to give the benefit of the doubt that this place opened less than a year ago. Honestly, I would not come back here, there are more restaurants out there to try for better food and service.

Throwback Thursday – Thanksgiving for Two

On behalf of Tablespoonsandteaspoons we want to wish you and your family a happy Thanksgiving. Thank you to my followers for your continuing support. 

If you’re unable to celebrate Thanksgiving with your family, we came up with a meal that can be done in a hour and more importantly it’s budget friendly, healthy and low carb. 

Bacon Wrapped Turkey Cutlets with Brussels Sprout Casserole and Skinny Mashed Yams

Bacon Wrapped Turkey Cutlets – Recipe was adapted from Domesticated Wildchild and Grace Before Meals

Boneless Skinless Turkey Breast Cutlets $4.99/lb 

Bacon $3.99 



1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

2) Place aluminum foil on a baking sheet and lay 4 strips of bacon flat on the foiled baking sheet. 

3) Rinse 2-4 slices of turkey breast cutlets depending on size and place cutlets on top of the bacon. 

4) Season cutlets generously in salt, pepper and garlic powder.  Stack cutlets. 

5) Place the tips of the bacon to wrap around the cutlets and roll tightly. 

6) Place bacon wrapped turkey cutlets in the oven for one hour.  Rotate the baking sheets 180 degrees halfway. 

7) Remove from oven and let it cool for 10 minutes. 

Brussels Sprouts Casserole – Recipe was adapted from Grace Before Meals

1 tablespoon of butter (I used the Earth Balance Organic Whipped Butter) $3.50 

16 pieces of Brussels sprouts -$2.99/lb.

Ocean spray craisins  (dried cranberries) at 2 for $3 ($1.50)

1/4 cup of water 

1/4 cup of breadcrumbs $1.50

1) Rinse and cut Brussels sprouts into quarters.

2) Melt butter in a non stick pan

3) Add Brussels sprouts and let it cool for 4 mins. 

4) Add dried cranberries and water and let it cook until water is evaporated. 

5) Add breadcrumbs and mix until toasted. 

Skinny Mashed Yams – Recipe was adapted from Tasty Kitchen

2 yams washed and cubed = $0.59/lb




1) Wash and cut yams into cubes.

2) Add yams to boiling water and cook until fork tender. 

3) Drain yams. Mash yams and add cinnamon and butter as needed. 

There you have it, a date night/Thanksgiving meal for two that can be done in one hour with each dish requiring no more than five ingredients. 

From our family to yours, once again Happy Thanksgiving! Cheers! 

Meatless Monday – Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Recovering from yesterday’s holiday dinner, today I personally decided to eat my leftover brussel sprouts that were made in bulk using the recipe posted back in March. 

Keep in mind that there will be a strong odor that is released when roasting brussel sprouts.  Leftover brussel sprouts can be consumed either hot or cold and a salad can be created.  Roasted brussel sprouts go well with other green vegetables such as kale or whole grains such as farro and quinoa.  Brussel sprouts’ versatility offers a wide variety of options as a side dish, main entree light healthy vegan dish or even a snack. 

Christmas Day Game Plan

On behalf of Tablespoonsandteaspoons we wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.  Since Christmas is on a Sunday this year, we decided to devise a meatless game plan that is comforting yet luxurious.  This game plan is my contribution to this year’s family holiday dinner.  My cousin and aunt are handling the meat dishes. 

Anyways, this year’s game plan includes the following: 

– Roasted Brussel Sprouts 

– Truffle Mustard Macraroni and Cheese (recipe from Food52)

– Merlot Dark Chocolate Fudge Brownies

We will elaborate on the recipe details during the last week of 2016.  Stay tuned. 

Meatless Monday – Roasted Brussels Sprouts

It has been over a week since my last post and as promised I am starting the week with another Meatless Monday recipe with a child’s least favorite vegetable: Brussels Sprouts.  Actually I was first introduced to brussels sprouts a few years ago as a frozen vegetable by my dad who would serve it with butter sauce.  Then over the summer I went with a former colleague to La Dama, a Mexican restaurant in the Financial District in NYC where I had a roasted brussels sprouts side dish.  The sprouts were roasted and it had cheese and lime. It was delicious, but unfortunately, they no longer make this side dish.

Recently, I came across fresh Brussels sprouts on sale two weeks ago at my local supermarket and I decided to purchase a bag.  After researching an easy dish to make with these brussels sprouts, I came across a dish that was posted on Once Upon a Chef where the Brussels Sprouts were roasted and mixed with balsamic vinegar and honey.

After being culinary inspired, the world of Brussels sprouts were further explored.

Brussels Sprouts were initially discovered during the 16th century in Belgium.  But more importantly, this cruciferous vegetable has many health benefits:

  • Prevents cancer especially bladder cancer, breast cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer and ovarian cancer.
  • Contains vitamin C, which protects cells from cancer and heart disease
  • Maintain healthy gums, teeth and skin
  • Helps with the immune system
  • Contains fiber, which regulates the digestive system, prevents constipation, lowers cholesterol levels and reduces heart disease and stroke.
  • Contains folate, which prevents birth defect development
  • Helps form and maintain DNA

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Two Vinegars and Honey (inspired by Once Upon a Chef)

There are six ingredients for this dish and the star ingredient is the Brussels Sprouts:

  • 1 package (12 0z) brussels sprouts, halved, stems and ragged outer leaves removed*
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Datu Putu
  • 1 teaspoon honey

Everything with the exception of the brussels sprouts were in my pantry.  The star ingredient was on sale at my local supermarket for $2.5o.


Six ingredient dish preparation 


Remove outer leaves and cut each piece in half.  Please the sprout onto a large bowl.  Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. 


Place brussels sprouts.  Sprinkle the brussels sprouts with ground black pepper.  Add two tablespoons of olive oil.  Toss to combine.  


Line baking pan with aluminum foil.  Spray the foiled pan with cooking spray.  Transfer brussels sprouts to a baking pan.  Spread sprouts evenly.  Roast in the oven for approximately twenty minutes.  Turn halfway for even browning.   


Remove pan from the oven and let it cool.  


Transfer brussels sprouts to a bowl.  Add 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar, 1 tablespoon of Datu putu sugar cane vinegar and 1 teaspoon honey.  Mix well to blend.  Serve. 

The total cost to make this meatless and health friendly dish is an investment of less than $20 and the Brussels sprouts only cost $2.50.  This dish usually serves 2-3 people, but the ingredients used can be applied to make other dishes such as Adobo and salads.