provreviewsandrecipes

Food Blog with delicious recipes and also reviews of Providence, RI restuarants

Figidini Wood Fire Eatery Review December 12, 2013

Filed under: Restaurant Review — ProvReviewsandRecipes @ 7:18 PM
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figidiniWe went to Figidini Wood Fire Eatery the beginning of September and the weather was pleasant enough to be able to sit at one of the small tales outside on the sidewalk. This was great as it was not as tight and hot like inside the restaurant.

Let me start by saying that Figidini is great at pizza and at seafood dishes. Those are the ones that were delicious. Any of the other dishes we had were lacking. But more on both of that in a moment as I go into some detail.

The service was nice. Our waitress was prompt and sweet. Even though it was a busy Friday night she took the time to make sure we didn’t have any questions on any of the menu items and once our food arrived that it was to our liking and that we did not need anything. Which sometimes on a busy night in a restaurant is a hard thing to come by.

We ordered a few different small plates and a pizza for myself and my fiancee to share as we wanted to experience as many things off the menu that we could on this visit. First we ordered the ‘Speck’ which is smoked prosciutto and pickled vegetables. The proscuitto was good but of a lower end quality. The pickled vegetables for whatever reason did not taste well when eaten with the proscuitto but were delicious on their own. I just wish there had been more of them on that plate.

Next we had what they call the ‘Combo’ whcih is lamb and sausage with local herbs. Both the lamb and the sausage were cooked perfectly both were lacking in flavor.

My personal favorite dish that we had was the ‘RI Calamari’. This was a different take on the traditional calamari. First off they cooked the calamari in the wood fire item. Let me just say that the smoky woody scent and taste of being cooked in a wood fire item lends itself beautifully to calamari. It was cooked perfectly and was tender. It was served with chili pepper and chives. This dish worked on so many levels and I wish I had a wood fire oven at my apartment so I could make this dish to devour at least once a week. (Yes it was that good).

Finally we ordered the ‘Cremini’ pizza. This pizza has smoked mozzarella, truffle oil, cured olives local chives and delicious mushrooms. Thesse pizza are individual sized and if you were with someone else and were only ordering pizza you would each want to order one. This particular pizza had a crispy crust with just the right amount of sauce to toppings ratio. It was one of the better pizza I have had in a long time.

Here’s the restaurant’s info:

67 Washington Street

Providence, RI 02903

figidini.com

 

Tilapia ‘Stuffed’ with Asparagus and Onions served with Haricot Verts and Beet Salad July 15, 2013

tilapiaSo for health reasons and at the urging of my doctor I now have to avoid eating Gluten. Not good for someone who loves pasta and bread like I do. But I have been focusing on making delicious dishes that do not make me miss the gluten ridden items I had once enjoyed and devoured. This easy dish of fresh Tilapia and vegetables is delicious. Make sure you make extra as once you eat your first portion you are going to want seconds. Yes, its that good.

I had frozen asparagus spears on hand that I had picked up at Trader Joe’s. I pulled out the amount I needed and stored the rest of the bag back in the freezer. Its so convenient. I also had purchased beets that were roasted, peeled and ready to eat. Which saves time when whipping up the dish. The whole cooking time takes about 20 minutes from start to finish. While the fish was in the oven I made the salad. I had gotten Haricot Verts but green beans would work out just as well in the salad.

My recipe is for two as it was just my fiancee and myself, but the recipe could easily be doubled. Plus its a great dish to impress company. Here’s the recipe for the Tilapia and following that is the recipe for the delicious Haricot Verts and Beet salad I made to go along with it. I served mine with rice as well but it could be served with potatoes or just with the fish and salad.

Tilapia ‘Stuffed’ With Asparagus and Onions

Ingredients:

2 Tilapia Filets, about 6-8 ounces each

10 Spears of Asparagus, trimmed

1/2 White Onion, sliced

4 Slices of Lemon

1 Teaspoon of Salt

1 Teaspoon of Pepper

1 Teaspoon of Old Bay Seasoning

1 Teaspoon of Garlic Powder

Direction:

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together in a small bowl the salt, pepper, Old Bay Seasoning and garlic powder. Next take the Tilapia filets and sprinkle both sides of each of the filets with the seasoning mix. Lay the filets on a foil lined baking sheet.

If you are using frozen asparagus place in a microwave safe dish and add 1/4 cup of water. Cover and microwave on high for 2 and half minutes. Drain the liquid from the dish. Do not be worried if the asparagus pieces do not seemed fully cook after microwaving as we will be putting them in the oven. If you are using fresh asparagus you can of course skip this step.

Place 5 pieces of asparagus on one end of each of the Tilapia filets. Next place half of the sliced onions over the asparagus. Starting from the end which the asparagus and onions are on and roll each of the filets up. Mine did not quite want to stay together after I rolled them so I flipped them over so the two ends that were touched were underneath. They stayed and cooked together perfectly.

Finally place two slices of lemon on top of each filet. Place in the oven and cook for 15 minutes. Then because I wanted my lemons to get a slight char on it, I turned the broiler on for 4 minutes.

Take out the filets and serve immediately while they are still hot from the oven. Serve with the haricot verts and beet salad along with rice or another choice of side for a delicious dish.

Haricot Verts and Beet Salad

Ingredients:

1/2 pound of Haricot Verts, trimmed

1 Roasted and Peeled Beet, diced

1/2 White Onion, diced

3 Cloves of Garlic, sliced

1/4 Cup of Red Wine Vinegar

1/4 Cup of Balsamic Vinegar

1 Teaspoon of Salt

1 Teaspoon of Pepper

1/2 Teaspoon of Red Pepper Flakes (if you don’t like or are sensitive to spice, can be omitted)

Directions:

Boil 4 cups of water in a small saucepan. Once boiling add the Haricot Verts and cook for 4 minutes. Drain and place in a bowl.

Mix together the red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, garlic and red pepper flakes in a small bowl and then pour over the Haricot Verts. Mix thoroughly. Add the beets and onions to the bowl. Mix again to make sure that all the ingredients are combined. Now it is ready to serve.

 

Shrimp Fra Diavolo May 20, 2013

Shrimp Fra DiavloNow I love spicy. This recipe was near my limit for spiciness but I enjoyed each and every mouthful that I shoved as quickly as possible into my mouth. I would say that I inhaled my first and second bowlful of this delicious dish. Now with that being said if you do not like spicy or enjoy a more milder taste, please use 1/4 of the recommended crushed red pepper flakes I have listed below. This dish is quick and easy to make. I like to serve mine with pieces of crusty bread to dip in the sauce and soak up all the delicious goodness that may have been left in the bowl. But serving it with rice or pasta would work as well. I like enjoying this with a glass of wine, usually some from the same bottle I used in cooking this dish, on a warm spring evening with the windows open and enjoying the fresh air blowing in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prep: 18 minutes

Cooking Time: 19 minutes

Total Time: 37 minutes

Servings: 6 adults as a main dish

Recipe:

1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil

1 cup of white wine

2 Tablespoons of unsalted butter

1 pound of medium shrimp, shelled and deveined

1 Large Yellow onion, thinly sliced

6 cloves of garlic, diced

1 16 ounce can of diced tomatoes

1 1/2 cups of vegetable broth

3 Tablespoons of crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 Tablespoon of salt

1/2 Tablespoon of black pepper

1/2 Tablespoon of Old Bay Seasoning

Directions:

Heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add butter and half of the crushed red pepper flakes. Once butter has melted add onions and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes, but make sure the garlic does not brown. Add the white wine and tomatoes, salt, pepper, remaining half of the crushed red pepper flakes and old bay seasoning. Cook for 7 minutes. Finally add the vegetable broth and shrimp. Cook for 7 minutes longer or until the shrimp is just pink and cooked through. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Make sure to serve with some crusty bread, rice or pasta. That is if you can make it that far without succumbing like I have before with this dish and just start dipping pieces of bread right into the warm pot and devour while standing over the stove top.

Buon appetito from my kitchen to yours.

 

Moules a La Mariniere/Mussels Mariniere February 24, 2013

Mussels Mariniere     Sometimes the dishes with the simplest of flavors are the most delicious. Case in point with this mussels dish. The ingredients are simple but they all work so well together that not using one of them would throw the whole dish off. This dish comes origin comes from the South of France. Julia Child also has a version of this dish in her ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’. So with that being said I have made this dish multiple times and it always comes out delicious.

I will usually use a dry Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio when I make this dish, but you could use any type of white wine you prefer. One of the things that cannot be missed with this dish is a crusty loaf of French bread to use to dip in the delicious broth. This is one of my favorite parts of this dish and I probably eat half the loaf of bread myself. Now I am known as a ‘Mussel Hoarder’ when it comes to this dish. What that means is that as I am taking a mussel from the large bowl that I am sharing with my fiancée from the middle of the table, I remove the mussel from the shell and place it on my plate and move on to the next. Now my fiancée, Birghandi, eats them as he goes. So when all the mussels have been removed from their shells I have all of mine in a pile on my plate, hence the term ‘Mussel Hoarder’. However you or anyone else eating at your dinner table decides to eat this dish it will be delicious. Bon Appetit from my kitchen to yours.

This recipe will serve 2-3 people as a main dish and 5 people as an appetizer.

Prep: 15 Minutes

Cooking: 18 Minutes

Total Time: 33 minutes

Recipe:

2 Lbs of Mussels, clean and de-beared

2 Cups of White Wine

1/2 Stick of Unsalted Butter, room temperature

2 Tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 Large White Onion, diced

4 Cloves of Garlic, finely diced

2 Bay Leaves

1/2 Cup of Fresh Parsley, chopped

Now to clean and de-beard the mussels is the part of this recipe that takes the longest. I always scrub all of mine in cool water with a scrubber brush in the sink. I then take a paring knife to get the beard, or tuft if prefer, out from the edge of the mussel shell. Discard any opened shells that if tapped on the edge of the sink do not stay closed when you push them shut. I’ve included a video at the bottom of this post of a video that is available on Youtube and shows you how to clean and de-beard mussels if you have any questions. Set the clean mussels aside as you start to prepare the rest of the dish.

In a large saucepan heat the olive oil over medium heat until warm. Add the butter until it has barely melted, about 1 minute. Next add the onion and garlic to the pan. Cook until the onion has started to soften and the garlic is golden colored, about 4 minutes. Add the white wine and bay leaves to the pan and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Add the mussels to the pan and cover. Cook for 6-8 minutes or until all the shells have opened. For the first six minutes do not be tempted to lift the lid to check on the mussels. You will let out the steam which you do not want to do as that is helping to open the mussel shells. Also do not cook your mussels for longer than 12 minutes even if some of the shells have not opened, as the mussels the longer they are cooked get extremely tough and no one likes tough, rubbery seafood.

Discard the bay leaves and any mussel shells that have not opened. Serve immediately along with the french bread and enjoy.

 

Here’s the video that shows how to clean, de-beard and store mussels. This video is very good.