Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen
Mustards Grill
Hello friends and family,

Recently I have taken the executive chefs and sous chefs at Mustards and Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen (CBK) on dining trips to San Francisco. It's inspiring for us to visit other restaurants to get ideas about food and so much fun to be out of the kitchen together.
We visited Tosca, Cotagna and Berkeley's Cafe at Chez Panisse. If you think there is an Italian or Mediterranean theme here you are right. We were focused particularly on seeing restaurants that cook with wood ovens and wood fired grills like we do. The restaurants were great fun, very tasty and the service spot on.
Joyce Goldstein, one of my favorite chefs and cookbook authors joined me for lunch a few days ago, we talked about the old days in San Francisco and about the current scene. You may have dined at her seminal restaurant Square One that closed in 1996. Joyce recommended her current favorite SPQR and we combined it with a stop at A 16. Both were very good with SPQR a standout.
The "month of sausage" returns to CBK in March. Freddy's green and red chorizo will be on the rotation along with Cajun andouille, and French spring garlic sausages. I am looking forward to duck sausage with kasha varnishkes particularly after my breakfast in New York at Russ and Daughters. I was so inspired by their Jewish deli food I got "The Gefilte Manifesto" cookbook. I made the recipe for spicy whole grain mustard and didn't wait the few days to round out the flavors. I nearly blew John's head off with the spiciness which mellowed with age.
My heritage is German, Norwegian, Russian and Austrian. My Dad took us to the Lincoln Deli in Minneapolis where they had the best corned and smoked meats and smoked fish, rye breads and baked goods. Reading the cookbook brought back many childhood memories.
Mustards is serving a Saint Patrick's Day Feast on Friday, March 17. Choose between Foster's soon to be famous "10 day" corned beef, a Kilkenny County rabbit stew, a Shepherd's Pie and grilled wild salmon, each paired with a worthy beverage. For dessert it's sticky toffee pudding with a Guinness-current ice cream.
For the rest of Pair Off Pour Off Friday's Mustards celebrates "spring outta winter," featuring menu items paired with asparagus, fava beans and sweet peas.
Brindisa is a wonderful Spanish food shop and tapas restaurant at the fabulous Borough Market in London. Monika Linton the owner authored a cookbook, Brindisa, The True Food of Spain, filled with yummy recipes and insightful information on Spanish ingredients and cooking. I recommend it highly.
Speaking of cookbooks, my friend Matt from Kitchen Arts and Letters in New York sent me an appraisal of my cookbook library. Matt said I have over 3,000 cookbooks! Needless to say, I have read them all-at least some of each.
John and I have been testing chicken wing recipes. I love wings because they are so flavorful, easy to cook and can be served as an appetizer or an entrée with side dishes. The recipe for March is Korean Baked Chicken Wings.
Happy Spring!
 Cindy Pawlcyn Napa Valley
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