Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Hell's Kitchen

A light blanket of snow fell on the Twin Cities last night. This called for a hearty breakfast, so this morning we drove to downtown Minneapolis to dine at Hell’s Kitchen. I’m not going to beat around the bush with this review. The food at Hell’s Kitchen was heavenly; With each bite I think I heard angels sing. Stop reading this blog, hop in your car, drive to Minneapolis, and order everything on the menu. You won’t be disappointed.

For those of you familiar with Lawrence, KS., Hell’s Kitchen reminded me of the now defunct Paradise CafĂ©. The artwork of Ralph Steadman, who illustrated Hunter S. Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, decorated the restaurant, which earned points from me. The restaurant earned immediate points for my daughter when our server brought her a small toolbox full of toys to keep her entertained. After our earlier “spicy taco’ incident that sent our family into a tailspin, I’ve been on edge each time we dine at a restaurant. This kid-friendly touch helped put me at ease. The menu also contained several options for kids that were healthy and inexpensive. My daughter opted for the waffles with a side of fruit that contained a nice fresh mix of blueberries, blackberries and strawberries for under $5.00.

My wife, who is the pancake queen, ordered lemon ricotta pancakes that were fluffy and bursting with so much flavor that syrup wasn’t needed. The snow that morning inspired me to eat a breakfast fit for a lumberjack, so I ordered a breakfast sandwich, consisting of bacon, eggs, mayo, and tomatoes between two slices of grilled sourdough bread. However, I didn’t stop there. I also ordered the Mahnomin Porridge, which is made from Minnesota wild rice, blueberries, cranberries, and hazlenuts all moistened with a mix of warm maple syrup and cream. I know porridge doesn’t appeal to most people, but this dish was a revelation to me. It’s one of the most original breakfast dishes I’ve ever tasted. In fact, it might be the best thing I’ve eaten all year. I can see myself embarking on a quest to replicate the recipe at home.

If you’re ever in the Twin Cities, do yourself a favor and eat at Hell’s Kitchen. It’s a meal that I will reminisce about when I’m on my deathbed.

Happy eating,


P.S. The following is a recipe for Mahnomin Porridge I found on the web. When I make the recipe, I’ll blog about it.

Mahnomin Porridge


4 cups cooked wild rice

¼ cup pure maple syrup

¼ cup dried blueberries

¼ cup craisins

½ cup roasted, cracked hazelnuts

1 cup heavy cream


  1. In a heavy non-stick sautee pan, add the cooked wild rice, heavy cream, and maple syrup, and warm through.
  2. Add the blueberries, craisins, and hazelnuts, and stir to mix well.
  3. Serve in a bowl with sides of warm heavy cream and maple syrup.

Courtesy of: Hell's Kitchen

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