POLLY’S

Friends, we are here today to talk to you about Polly’s Pancake Parlor, a magical restaurant in Sugar Hill, NH. Frankly, the name of the town says it all.

Let’s journey back, shall we? I, Meghan, was first introduced to Polly’s Pancake Parlor in May 2019 by all of my best friends at once (literally–it was during my bachelorette party because duh, where else would one want to spend a bachelorette party?)

I don’t know if it’s the memory of spending a weekend with all of my best friends simultaneously, the pancakes themselves, or some combination, but I think Polly’s cast a magical spell on me. Since then I have OBVIOUSLY taken Neal there as well as various of Neal’s family members and friends. Every trip to Polly’s has been a sheer delight, and every person we’ve brought there has fallen in love.

One thing that makes Polly’s so special is (spoiler alert!!) the pancakes, naturally. They have 6 batters and 4 toppings you can choose from, and you can mix and match for each individual pancake!! Plus daily special flavors!! (Plus a lot of other delicious food, but no one came to this post to read about that, did you?) In case anyone was curious, we do in fact have all the regular batter and topping choices memorized. They are as follows, in any combination:

BattersToppings
PlainBlueberries
Whole WheatWalnuts
BuckwheatCoconut
GingerbreadChocolate chips
Oatmeal Buttermilk
Cornmeal
Note: I feel great about my decision to lay out all these options in a table for you
This was Neal’s order. It looks decent, but if it were me you’d be seeing bacon and gingerbread pancakes in the frame. But he takes better pictures than me.

Anyways, just in case I haven’t gotten the message across yet, we cannot recommend Polly’s highly enough. Run, don’t walk, to Polly’s next time you’re anywhere near the area. Or ski 😉

Celebrating our first wedding anniversary!

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Bibimbap

Friends, it’s time for us to talk about bibimbap. Neal discovered this delicious dish while living in Korea, and Meghan discovered it while dating Neal in Boston 😉

Here’s how it all went down (for Meghan at least). While Meal was in grad school, they would typically do homework at Meghan’s school library in Harvard Square. Inevitably, they would decide they “deserved a treat” merely for doing homework, and would go sample a Harvard Square restaurant for dinner. One fine night in February 2017, we traipsed off to a restaurant that VERY SADLY HAS SINCE CLOSED DOWN, Kaju Tofu House. We’re still sad about it, but thankfully they do have another location in MA, it’s just much less convenient to where we live. Anyways, here’s what we ate on that night in 2017:

Allegedly, “bibim” means mixing various ingredients, and “bap” means rice. So bibimbap is a mixture of meat, and/or vegetables, and/or an egg over rice, topped with sesame seeds and gochujang sauce and served in a hot bowl. (At least that’s what Neal tells me, so if it’s way off please direct all complaints straight to him). To reuse my own joke, it was love at first bite.

After that night, Meal realized they could probably recreate this magic, minus the hot clay bowl part. We have had various attempts over the years since then, and have ultimately figured out a recipe that meets our personal preferences. It looks like this:

And it tastes like this (4 servings):

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup jasmine rice
  • 5-6 oz spinach
  • 2 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 4 tbsp chili garlic sauce
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 large carrot (or 2 small), grated
  • 1 cucumber, sliced
  • 4 eggs
  • Sesame seeds for topping
  • Gochujang sauce for topping

Directions:

  1. Cook the rice.
  2. Grate the carrot and slice the cucumber. Put aside.
  3. Sauté spinach. Drizzle sesame oil over it and season with salt. Put cooked spinach aside in a bowl.
  4. Add ground beef to the same skilled. Cook until meat is done, then drain fat if necessary.
  5. Add chili garlic sauce, soy sauce, and brown sugar to the skillet with the cooked beef. Stir and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
  6. Fry eggs for however many bowls you’re making.
  7. Make bowls by adding 1/4 of the cooked rice, beef, spinach, carrots, and cucumber, and top with 1 egg per bowl. Sprinkle sesame seeds over top and serve with gochujang.

Notes

  • If you don’t like it too spicy, use about half of the garlic chili paste. We are spicy people 😉
  • Same idea with gochujang sauce – a little goes a long way if you’re not as spicy as us.
  • This recipe is very customizable based on meat, vegetable, etc. preferences. Choose your own adventure.

Surprise!

G U Y S. We had the brain fart to end all brain farts. For the past several months of quarantining and thus experimenting with all kinds of foodventures, Meghan kept thinking “It would be so nice if I had a place to write out all these recipes!” 7 MONTHS LATER, WE REMEMBERED WE HAD THIS FOOD BLOG. As you can see we very quickly ditched this blog and moved all our food updates to Instagram, which is #amazing, but makes it difficult for us to write out recipes.

SO ANYWAYS, 3.5 solid years later, here we are. Also we’re married now 😉 How nice would it have been if we remembered this, I don’t know, like 7 months ago when we had nothing to do but sit at home and try recipes?

Us enjoying a classic quarantine date night in our 1-bedroom apartment.

New to New Canaan

Hi there, friends. This weekend, mealswithMeal became mealsonwheels. Meal drove to Meghan’s hometown, the illustrious New Canaan, to hang with Meggo’s friends (& parents) during her birthday weekend. The weekend swiftly turned into one big eating adventure, to the point where we need to separate this blog post by the day. Trust us, you’d be overwhelmed if we tried to fit all our foodventures in one post.

On Saturday, Meal met up with one of Meghan’s soulmate friends, Hilarie. (Atlernative text to read here: On Saturday, Hilarie and Meghan met up with Meghan’s boyfriend, Neal). We first stopped by Le Pain Quotidien, where Neal silently decided to start referring to Hilarie as Hilarie “the Bruncher” Bininski.

It was a pure delight to combine all these friends and all this food. We took a group selfie no more than 20 minutes into the inital meeting of Hilarie and Neal, which felt so right.

After lunch, we were very full but simply could not NOT pop into the illustrious “New Canaan Olive Oil” (everything is illustrious there) for some samples and some browsing. Meghan here, and I’ll be honest: my initial plan in going here was to marvel at how a store could possibly stay in business selling nothin’ but olive oil. Well, friends, joke’s on me. Turns out I really enjoy tasting olive oil and trying to figure out if I could afford fancy honey (spoiler alert: I couldn’t).

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Olive you.

All in all, it was a deeply successful day of food and friends. We’ll keep you posted on part 2.