CasaBlanca, the newly opened, family operated eatery at 5506 W. Overland Road in Boise, employs two transplanted moms who cook Cuban recipes handed down through the generations.
"The cooks are my mom and mother-in-law. It's cooking just like back home," said owner Karina Soteras. "It's authentic, and it's the first Cuban restaurant in the valley."
CasaBlanca serves up rustic fare filled with Spanish and African influences. You'll find tostones (fried green plantains, $2) and yucca con mojo criollo (yucca with creole garlic sauce, $3.50) on the menu, along with the traditional Latino exports like flan and rice pudding.
"The other name for the restaurant is 'Mom's Kitchen.' People say it's just like eating at home."
For more info, call 208-331-2370.
Moving from Cuban food to camping fare, Eagle's quaint neighborhood sandwich shop, Blue Moose Cafe, will be venturing into new culinary territory this winter. Owner Marcy Anderson is expanding the cafe's offerings to include pre-fixe Dutch oven meals Thursdays through Saturdays, beginning Oct. 4.
"I have teamed up with a couple that their profession or expertise is Dutch-oven cooking," said Anderson. "We're going to create an outdoor kitchen on the outside of the log cabin sun room that we have, and we're going to do all our cooking through the winter out there."
Anderson decided to go the Dutch-oven dinner route in lieu of installing a full kitchen.
"I have a Walmart grill that I work off of. I have a three-rack oven. I don't have a professional kitchen, nor do I have $50,000 to make one," Anderson said.
Anderson explained that standard dinner options will include ribs, baked chicken and prime rib, along with rotating specials like beef stroganoff, chicken cacciatore and fresh fish.
"It's going to be all-inclusive, from Blue Moose's signature salad and soup to the dinner to the cobbler, homemade ice cream," said Anderson.
As of now, Anderson plans to make the Dutch oven dinners by reservation only. For more information, visit thebluemoosecafe.net.