Found out a few days ago that my big brother is coming today to visit form Japan! I wish he told me a few weeks in advance, but nevertheless, I am excited to see him! Right now in Japan, Gold Week is going on. It's a week containing a few public holidays such as the Emperor's birthday, Greenery day, Constitution Memorial day, Children's Day, etc. hence many vacation during this week. I'd like to think that my brother is coming to visit his family because he misses us, but the reality is, he misses the infamous American fast food :P
This morning, after going to yoga, I decided to make French Toast since I had sourdough bread from Le Boudin bakery (pretty rare occasion). I also have a lot of banana to get rid of. So I decided to make French Toast with a banana instead of an egg! Not only was it one of the easiest things I've ever made, it was SCRUMPTIOUS! I gobbled it down in a flash. Surprise. Recently, my good Pentax camera's battery died and I caved in and bought an iPhone 4, the I'm trying out the new iPhone camera (The recipe is below.)
After sitting through 2 hours of lecture, I met up with my brother! My, did he gain weight! I sort of teased him about it (it's called karma. My brother called me fat my entire life. And I was never really fat!). Since it was lunch, we decided to head to downtown and eat at Phillipe's French Dip Sandwich shop. My brother has been dreaming of this place for weeks it seems. I've personally never heard of it, but it's supposedly one of the best sandwich shops in the whole of the US and also the original founder of the French dip sandwich!
Located in the outskirts of Chinatown, I ordered a lamb French dip, while my brother also got a lamb French dip AND a beef with swiss French Dip. The atmosphere reminded me of an old diner, which would make sense since it's been around since the 20's!
The sandwich literally melted in your mouth and the lamb had lots of flavor! I am definitely a fan of the French dip sandwich! For those of you unfamiliar with French dip, as I was until today, the bread used is a French roll dipped in the gravy of the roasts (that is freshly oven-roasted!). It is a must-eat before you die! So if you're in downtown LA, head over to Phillipe's (unless you're vegetarian/vegan), you won't be disappointed!
I remembered that my beloved Urth cafe opened a new coffee shop somewhere in downtown. Looked it up on my new iPhone and discovered that it's only a 6 min drive away. It's a really cute Urth Cafe, but I would have to say a really random location. This Urth attracts the business crowd, I think. Stuffed from eating our sandwich's like crazy, we only ordered coffee: I got the small Honey Vanilla latte and my brother got the Large Italian Cappuccino.
Checked into his room at the Hilton, I watched a rerun of Top Chef as he passed out. Jetlagged. We headed back to my school early (to beat traffic) since I had rehearsals to get through. The last stop for food for the day: Chipotle. Of course, my brother will get better stuff once he's in San Diego tomorrow, but the craving was too strong to hold off! Japan has a lot of good food, but when it comes to Mexican food, it's not the same. I don't think Japanese people really like spicy, and that's the component that seems to be missing (claims my brother, anyway). He got meat burrito of some type and I got a vegetarian bowl. Stuffed. No more food please :P
Although, it was a short visit, I got to catch up with my brother on many things, find out the situation in Japan, and also found out some interesting news which I won't post just yet! It was a fun day and couldn't have asked for more :)
Eggless French Toast
Four slices of sourdough bread
1 ripe banana
1/2 cup of vanilla soy milk (I use Silk's Vanilla flavor)
grease for pan
1/2 cup of sliced strawberries
Anything you desire, really
1. Puree banana and soy milk in a blender. Pour into bowl.
2. Grease pan and heat on med-high.
3. Dip slices of bread into banana batter, soak up as much as possible. Bread will crumble easy so I did it two at a time (you can do four at a time if you're gonna cook them all together immediately).
4. Place on hot pan and fry for 3mins, or until browned on each side.
5. Place on plate and serve with strawberries and necar!