Asparagus and eggs recipe

Which is Bigger: Little Mac or Asparagus?

February 28, 2010 · 93 comments

This is big.

This is so big.

I’ve been gone for a while. I’m sure you noticed. No posts, tweets, facebook updates. But I have a good reason. A very good reason.

You see, for the last few months, I’ve been hiding a very big secret.

I’m opening a restaurant.

Me! Can you believe it? WE, actually. My friend/partner Erin and I, along with our husbands, Uri and Alejandro. I didn’t mean to keep this from you, but I had to wait until I quit my job – and last week, that’s just what I did. I walked up to my boss at my cushy desk job and said, “I quit. I’m opening a restaurant.” It wasn’t quite that dramatic, but it was scary as hell.

After hours, days, months and countless emails to friends, we named our restaurant Little Mac. Cute, huh? Mac for macaroni and cheese, because that’s what we’ll have. All kinds of mac and cheese, using local cheeses and farm-fresh produce. Of course that won’t be all. We’ll also have salads, craft beers, California wines and nostalgic desserts like homemade Oreo cookies. We don’t have a final location just yet, but we hope to set up shop in downtown or uptown Oakland, and if we’re really lucky we’ll open our doors by mid-summer.

Asparagus spears recipe

Another reason for keeping this secret was that it didn’t quite seem real yet. I’ve been talking about it for years. How one day, when the time is right, I will open a restaurant. And now, at 30 years-old, I’ve been married, and divorced, and married again. I’ve gone back to school for a Masters. And I quit a few credits shy of a degree to move across the country– to a place I’ve never been to before. And once again, I’m changing everything. Putting everything we have into a dream.

It hasn’t been easy. This past week in particular was extraordinarily disheartening. But we’re ready for it. Ready for the ups, the downs, the disappointments, the excitement. And wait until you meet Erin. She’s awesome. Besides being a chef and a lawyer, she’s the kind of friend everyone wishes they had. But you’ll see. In the coming weeks you’ll hear much more about Erin, and maybe I can even convince her to write a post of her own.

So are you ready? Will you follow us for the ride? I’ll keep you posted on landlords, brokers, lawyers, distributors, architects, contractors, city officials and everyone else who will make or break us along the way. And I promise to post more often. My last day of full-time work is Thursday (holy crap!), and then me and my fellow Pisces girls, Claudia and Erin, are celebrating our birthdays barrel-tasting in Sonoma. But after that, I swear, no more disappearing, and I’ll be back to posting at least twice a week. For those who want recipes and who don’t really care about the restaurant, you’ll get that too. Like this deconstructed frittata using the season’s first asparagus. Asparagus, finally! That might be even bigger news than Little Mac!

Actually, no. Little Mac is definitely bigger than asparagus.

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Deconstructed Asparagus Frittata
2 servings

2 fresh, organic eggs
4 small creamer potatoes, sliced very thin.
6 asparagus spears
Extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Chili Marash (awesome spicy chili powder that Erin introduced me to)

Snap the ends off of asparagus, and slice horizontally through the center of each spear, creating two thin slices. Slice again vertically to create pieces about 2 inches long. Blanch spears in boiling water for 30 seconds.

Heat up a cast iron skillet and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. When oil is hot, arrange potatoes in a single layer in the skillet. Let cook for 3 minutes, then flip. Add salt and black pepper and cook for 2 more minutes, until brown. Be careful not to burn potatoes. Drain on a paper towel.

Arrange crispy potato slices on a plate. Top with asparagus.

Crack an egg into the same skillet and cook for one minute, or until the egg white is set. Slide the egg on top of your plate. Add a sprinkle of salt, marash chili and a drizzle of olive oil. Repeat with the remaining egg, adding a touch more olive oil to the skillet if needed.

Where I Shopped:
Local eggs, asparagus, creamer potatoes: Berkeley Farmers’ Market
Marash chili: The Pasta Shop, Oakland

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{ 84 comments… read them below or add one }

Genie March 2, 2010 at 3:56 pm

Oh wow, wow, wow! Since I work in that neighborhood, I cannot WAIT for you guys to open. I am passionate — SO passionate — about mac and cheese, and though I still maintain mine is the best in all the world, I cannot wait to work my way through your menu. HUGE congrats to you, and let us neighborhood food bloggers know if you need any assistance with anything.


Heidi March 2, 2010 at 6:28 pm

Oh how I wish I lived closer! Mac and cheese is one of my all time faves, (especially while I’m pregnant, which I am). My sister and I are always trying to come up with yummy new mac and cheese recipes to swap. BUT, that frittata also looks so tasty that I’m pretty sure it’s what my family will be forced to have for dinner tomorrow night!


Steph @lickmyspoon March 2, 2010 at 9:57 pm

Congrats!!! that is so exciting! looking forward to following the progress all the way up to the BIG opening :)


Trissa March 3, 2010 at 2:05 am

Congratulations! I wish you and your partners the best of luck! We’re rooting for you!


Britt March 3, 2010 at 10:45 am

Oh my goodness, that’s amazing news! Congratulations. Can’t wait to hear about the whole journey. Best of luck to all of you on this amazing new endeavor!!!


Kristin March 3, 2010 at 1:23 pm

Congrats!! what great news! I’m looking forward to hearing all about it and now have a pretty good excuse for going to California when you’re all set up. Good luck with everything!


rach March 3, 2010 at 2:39 pm

Congratulations, it is really wonderful beautiful news and what is really lovely is that I feel as if I have been part of your journey (observing I mean). I think i have a sense of your food and style so I am imagining wonderful things for your place.
Who knows maybe i will get to come and eat with you all (I will bring a mothership peice of parmesan with me)
Hope the coming weeks go smoothly, lots of good vibes to you all rach


Nadia February 5, 2012 at 6:32 am

Curious as to wehehtr or not there is any reason in particular that Headway didn’t get a mention? Just personal preference or something blatantly wrong with it?


Larry March 3, 2010 at 3:07 pm

So exciting. Congratulations and best of luck with Little Mac!


Melanie March 4, 2010 at 8:59 am

Congratulations Allison!! Little Mac is the perfect name. You done good. :D

I’ll be back home for the holidays and will definitely stop in! After months of salivating over your gorgeous photos, I’ll finally have a chance to try your cooking in person!


J2Kfm (Malaysian Food Blog) March 4, 2010 at 8:24 pm

Congrats! I feel happy for you guys. Hope to see more shots of the restaurant and the foods you will be serving. Mac n Cheese in a variety of ways? Great.


Darya March 4, 2010 at 10:45 pm

OMG I am so psyched about this! Congrats!!! w00t!!


Daily Spud March 5, 2010 at 8:40 am

Wow, that is tremendously exciting! If and when I next get as far as California, I will have to come and dine at Little Mac :)


Erica March 5, 2010 at 12:25 pm

Wow!!!! I am so happy for you and Alejandro! Good luck and I hope to visit your place one day :)


Rainier Wolfcastle March 6, 2010 at 12:23 pm

Made the deconstructed frittata this morning. Didn’t have chili marash, so I used home-smoked serrano chipotle powder (made exactly like chipotle, but using serranos instead of jalapeños). Absolutely delish. The mix of some crunchy/some melting potato slices and the barely-blanched asparagus tips was perfect. Brava!

Please keep us posted on restaurant news on Twitter. You can be sure we’ll visit once you open and settle in. BTW, a beverage idea that might match well with your intended restaurant bill of faire: Meyer lemon lemonade, maybe with fresh mint. Wife is in the kitchen mixing up a batch as I type.

All the best of luck to you in your new endeavor.


my spatula March 8, 2010 at 5:16 pm

what amazing, wonderful, BIG news, allison!! wishing you and little mac all the success in the world!! yay!!


ashley March 8, 2010 at 6:53 pm

that’s great! wishing you lots and lots of success in your new endeavor! it sounds great!


Evie March 11, 2010 at 12:28 pm

Congratulations! That is wonderful.


Jenious March 11, 2010 at 6:30 pm

Cheers to you for taking on your dream! Adorable name too. Looking forward to following along on your travels through your writing. And, I can’t wait to pop by Little Mac when I visit my family in NorCal.


Mary March 21, 2010 at 4:17 pm

nice! i’ve been following your blog for a few months now, and look forward to visiting your restaurant!


Mrs. L March 22, 2010 at 6:22 pm

That is SO exciting! Congratulations and standing by for more info. Will travel for great food! Mrs. L.


Anna March 29, 2010 at 7:09 am

This looks so good i am adding it to my “to Try” list!!!

check out my stuff at


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Hmm it appears like your website ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I submitted and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I too am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to the whole thing. Do you have any tips for novice blog writers? I’d definitely appreciate it.


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