Last night my dive buddy and I went to Watts Grocery for dinner and to exchange Christmas gifts. He gave me a gorgeous book called Reef by a team of photographers called Scubazoo. I gave him a very useful tool, a hammer with a bottle opener, and 16 bottles of beer that I bought from Wine Authorities: Dogfish Head 90 Minute Imperial IPA, Bell's Cream Stout, and Prima Pils.
Dinner was as usual very good. We didn't order starters but we did share some hushpuppies. My friend was skeptical about them but I liked them. I've never met a hushpuppy I didn't like. They were formed into balls, crisp on the outside and soft and breadlike inside. There were specks of green onion and parsley visible inside. They were served with a cilantro mayonnaise.
I had molasses chili glazed salmon with collard risotto in its pot likker. For those of you who are not from the south, pot likker is the resulting broth from cooking collards in water with onion, salt, pepper and fat back or ham hock. I know some Southerners who save the pot likker, pour it into cups and make their children drink it because it's full of nutrients that boil off the collards.
The salmon was perfectly cooked to medium. I really liked the molasses chili glaze. The sweet glaze complimented the bitterness of the greens.
My dive buddy had the pork. The portion was huge and it looked tasty. I always want to pick up a pork chop like that and gnaw on the bone, but I spared my dining companion my atavistic impulses.
We were too full to get dessert. The portions were huge. I'm glad we didn't order starters.
Our waiter was helpful. He made a good wine recommendation.