Saturday, March 13, 2010

TRAVEL WITHOUT LEAVING HOME

I didn't physically go far from home but this weekend I traveled to Ireland and Slovenia via my dinner plate. Friday I joined a group that visited Sterle's Slovenian Country House up on E 55th in Cleveland. I've had my eye on this place for a while and when the invitation came from a dinner group I'm acquainted with I snapped up the chance.

Friday and Saturday nights are Polka nights at Sterle's so we had the full effect with a great guy and his accordian providing all the lively music. This was a very entertaining place and reminded me of a restaurant my family visited annually over our holiday's in Florida called Old Heidleburg. Sterles is built to remind you of an old Alpine chateau and comes complete with wait staff in costumes and paintings of snow capped mountains on the walls. The food portions were large and much of the meal is served family style. My Wiener Schnitzle was fantastic - tender and fried to a golden crisp - served with homestyle fried potatoes and a salad. The servers weren't totally in control but they were amusing enough to make up for the confusion over the meals and checks.

Conversation flowed pretty easily around the table even though not many people knew each other. That's certainly part of the charm of going with a group like this. Even among our end of the table we found many common interests and in fact two of these folks had met once in a church in Miami a year or so ago. Once conversation gets moving it's easy to find that it really is a small world.
Although not in the most popular section of Cleveland, I'd definately say Sterle's is worth a visit at least once just for the ambiance. Take your dancing shoes and favorite polka partner.

From the mountains to the Emerald Isle

Saturday night was Irish pot luck over at Bev's in honor of St. Patty's day this week. Everyone brought something and the food was terrific. Laura brought a creamy luscious cheese soup, Nancy brought an appetite stimulating cabbage salad that perked up the palate for some great corned beef and cabbage that Julie brought. Her dinner was cooked in some good Irish stout and brown sugar that gave it a great slightly sweet and sour flavor. Bev's carrots and potatoes topped off the meal and we were all stuffed to the gills.
I took a cheesecake that turned out pretty good. Although I'm not sure how authentic cheesecake is to the Irish, it did contain a little Bailey's so maybe that's the connection. The website I visited promised that cheesecake is appropriate so I gave it a shot.

Here is a link to the web site I found my recipe on. Visit and make yourself a taste of Ireland www.fantasy-ireland.com/Baileys-Irish-Cream-cheesecake.html This is a creamy style cheesecake with a definate flavor of Bailey's.




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