Thanks for all the birthday wishes! Of course, it doesn’t feel any different to be 21. Yet. Except that I now have to go change all my ‘about me’ blurbs to say that I’m 21. Oh boy!! (sarcasm.)
Anyway, in my mind, my birthday eats started a night early. Why? Because we went out for sushi, one of my all-time favorite meals. We went to a cheaper place near the local movie theater – and saw Mission Impossible right after. <– actually a really good movie.
Started with the house salad – a mix of greens and seaweed salad, with tomatoes, cukes and avocado, in a ginger soy dressing. Favorite!
Our sushi spread. I don’t remember what they all were, but it was all tasty!
Then, on Sunday (actual B-day day) I slept in! And had brown rice porridge for breakfast Then, for lunch, I chose a local french bakery.
For my meal I just got roasted squash (with cayenne and honey) and a green salad (no pic) – and had some delicious bread, and a few bites of my Mom’s sandwich.
I saved room for dessert (shared, though)! Sticky toffee pudding. It was light and tasty – not the most fantastic dessert, but I enjoyed it. Especially the candied orange.
Washed down with a soy Intelligentsia chai latte. I don’t know what’s different about their chai concentrate, but it’s so good. In my opinion, it’s better than the Oregon chai mix that most cafés use.
Then, I got to do a little birthday shopping! At Lululemon! I walked out with these – something I’ve wanted/needed. (click picture for source)
Running tights! I was too lazy to put them on to take a picture, so this from the Lulu website. So comfy and warm! Can’t wait to run outside in them
Skip ahead to… dinner! We went to Japonais, a contemporary Japanese restaurant on the Chicago River. Now I’m not one of those people who would enjoy going out at midnight on their 21st birthday and downing 21 shots –no thank you. I’m perfectly happy to order my first legal drink at a nice restaurant!
A sake martini! Sake-vodka blend, with fresh cucumber. My mom said it right – it’s like alcoholic cucumber water, very refreshing. We pretty much order only from the appetizer menu, and shared everything. It was really dark in t restaurant, so my dad used his iPhone to light some of the photos for me – please excuse the shadowy-ness, or the pixel-y-ness.
Bibb lettuce salad.
Toro tartare – a chef’s special that wasn’t on the menu, but my dad asked for it, and they were able to make it anyway! That’s a quail egg on top.
Curried japanese sweet potato soup – easily one of my favorite dishes of the night. Also, the soup managed to stay hot until we were finished with it! I love that kind of thing – I thought it was due to the shape of the crock.
The rock! They bring you a hot rock, and thinly sliced marinated meat, and you cook it on the rock. This is one of the few times I eat red meat, quite tasty.
Hirame (fluke) from the raw bar.
Hawaiian hamachi (yellowtail). I love these kinds of ‘tasting’ meals. You get one bite of everything!
Tuna flatbread – Japanese pizza! I wasn’t sure the meal was going to fill me up, until we ate this. Perfect amount of food. But, per usual, dessert was my favorite part! We ordered two to share:
Started with the ‘coffee and doughnuts’ – hazelnut chocolate sauce filled beignets, and a green tea semi-freddo (cold cream, kind of like a mousse but creamier). The donuts were ah-mazing – and again, were served warm and stayed warm! I probably would have been fine with just that, but hey, it was my birthday! So I got one more…
Kabocha cheesecake! I’m not sure if I ordered this only because it was made with kabocha, but I loved it. Notice the hole? There was a candle in there, but I didn’t get it on camera. The kabocha layer was under the cream layer, so after a few bites I just ate the kabocha. Somehow, I did not leave the restaurant feeling like I ate too much. That is one thing I love about this type of food – it’s so delicate, light, and clean, that a few bites is enough to satisfy the taste. You can leave feeling satisfied, full, and not overly unhealthy.
Not my healthiest day of eats, but I enjoyed it – no regrets (and I promise I had a salad for lunch :-P!!!) But, all those desserts made for awesome workout fuel this morning! I only grabbed a piece of plain toast before hitting the gym, and I knocked out a super easy 3 mile treadmill run, beat my best 3 mile time (now less than 28 mins!), and got through a 30 minute total body weights circuit – without losing energy!
I didn’t do anything crazy, but had a really nice, relaxing day – filled with some of my favorite things.
What is your ideal birthday meal?
Are you as big a fan of Japanese food as I am?