Sunday, December 13, 2009
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
The ultimate croissant I've ever tasted comes from Tartine Bakery in San Francisco. A truly delicious experience, one unmatched to any other. This croissant sets the highest standards. If you live in Ventura, check out My Florist. They have consistently proved to be quality bakers of breads and pastries. Renaud's Patisserie in Santa Barbara is a small French cafe with some tasty croissants and quaint, french ambiance.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Saturday, September 26, 2009
What better way to end an insanely busy week than with a slice of homemade apple pie. As Fall creeps into the background I can't help but feel a sense of coziness, warmth and quietness. The Summer partying is officially over. Now, it's all about family, week night television and enjoying a slower pace of life. That is, once you leave work for the day.
It feels so strange to be back in my hometown as the sense of familiarity of the seasons is laden with childhood memories, sights, smells, and sounds. A little weird yet so comforting. So why apple pie? A classic for really any season, but Fall is when the Engel apple tree has branches covered in fruit. It's pretty amazing to see, as this Gordon variety Apple tree is seasonally consistent with its fruit production. It keeps not just my Dad happy with Apple Crisps, pies, and cobblers but also the birds that frequent it for the overripe apples that have fallen to the ground.
This pie is a combination of several recipes. Never am I one to follow a recipe, so why not multitask and incorporate three? The crust is from Julia Child; we use Crisco & butter.
Classic Apple Pie with Streusel Crumble Topping
for the crust... Baking with Julia
5 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 sticks cold unsalted butter cut in cubes
1 3/4 cups solid vegetable shortening, chilled
1 cup ice water
for the Oat-Wheat Germ Streusel Topping... The Perfect Pie
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
a pinch of salt
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup toasted wheat germ
5 1/3 tablespoons unsalted butter diced, at room temperature
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
In a large bowl combine everything with your hands. This is the fun part!
apple filling... The New Basics Cookbook
1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
(or maybe a tad more, this is my fav addition)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Egg Wash for Dough
tablespoon of water
Peel and slice the apples and combine everything in the apple filling list together in a big bowl. The cornstarch will thicken the apple filling while the zest will bring out some juices in the apples.
Roll out the dough on a floured surface. Place into a pie dish. I believe this dough will make two pies, so you can always freeze one of the round discs. Brush the egg wash on to the pie dough and pre-cook the dough for about 8 minutes, or until dough is set.
Let cool. Next add the apple filling. Cover the apples with the Streusel Crumble.
Bake for about 1 1/4 hours, or until the filling is bubbling and the crust edges are golden brown.
phew... that was a lot of direction! Last but not least, Dig In!
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Because I am composed of a strong Pitta (mostly fire with some water) I have a quick temper and a fiery disposition. Watch out! According to Ayurvedics, my state of mind and body are thrown off balance by spicy food, caffeine, heavy foods, stress... you get the picture. In order to stay balanced, and this has actually proved to be true, I must consume cooling, calming foods. All in all, it's quite fascinating and may ring true for some people, and to others, well, it may sound ridiculous.
Whether you are a fellow Pitta or not, this mango lassi is a great way to cool off on a hot September weekend. Made with vanilla yogurt, frozen mango, mint and a touch of Indian spices, I find this drink to be a healthy treat at any time of the day.
1 1/4 cup organic vanilla yogurt
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Saturday, August 8, 2009
For those who aren't familiar with the organization Outstanding in the Field, it is a project that brings together local farmers, chefs and foodies of all sorts for amazing dinners and conversation. They ultimately aide in rebuilding relationships between the consumer and farmer - the epitome of the sustainable and slow food movements. What an awesome cause! Unfortunately I missed my chance to attend the McGrath Farm Dinner in Camarillo, featuring wines from Old Creek Winery and creations by Chef Tim Kilcoyne from The Sidecar Restaurant - one of my fav's. I heard it was amaaaaazing! Hopefully they'll be swinging through Ventura County again next year. In the meantime, I'll keep enjoying their cookbook.
from Outstanding in the Field Cookbook
1 Meyer lemon
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons white flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 1/2 pints mixed fresh berries
1 1/3 cups white flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, cut into pieces and chilled
2 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons ice water
Whisking is key here! In a medium bowl, whisk together the 1/2 cup sugar, flour and salt. Whisk in the egg and egg yolk until a smooth batter forms. In a heavy bottom saucepan bring the milk to a boil. While whisking the egg batter constantly, temper it by pouring a little bit of the hot milk into the egg batter. Whisking briskly, pour the entire egg batter into the milk. Whisk in lemon zest. Keep the saucepan over medium heat, whisk constantly, scraping the bottom and sides of the pan. The mixture should quickly thicken. Remove from the heat and pour the pastry cream into a bowl. Press a piece of plastic wrap flush to the surface to prevent a skin from forming. This is key! Refrigerate until cold, or overnight.
In a small bowl, mix your fresh berries with the lemon juice and remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar. This will help the flavors marinade together, macerating the berries.
Tart shell: Using your food processor, pulse the flour, sugar and salt until combined. Add the butter and pulse into mixture forms coarse bread crumbs. Add 1 of the yolks and 1 tablespoon of water and pulse until the dough just comes together, adding the remaining water 1 tablespoon at a time only if necessary. Press the dough into a disk, wrap tightly in plastic, and refrigerate at least for an hour. I personally believe overnight is the best way to go!
Once you remove the dough from the fridge, let it sit for about 10 minutes. On a lightly floured surface roll the tart dough to 1/8 inch thick. Fit into your favorite tart pan with a removable bottom and refrigerate again for 30 minutes.
Heat the oven to 425 F.
Line the pan with parchment paper and pour in pie weights, bake for 20 minutes. Remove the parchment and weights, prick the bottom and sides with a fork. Bake for an additional 5 to 7 minutes until tart shell is a golden brown.
Meanwhile, mix the remaining egg yolk with a pinch of salt. Brush the surface of the tart crust with the egg yolk mixture and bake for 1 to 2 minutes until the yolk is set. Remove tart shell from oven and let it completely cool.
Assembly: Spoon the chilled pastry cream into the shell and smooth the top. Pour the berries and their juices on top and serve as soon as you can.
Saturday, August 1, 2009
One of my best friends lives her life gluten and dairy free. So after I told her I'd cook for the "Concert Under the Stars" picnic I became a tad stumped on what to make. My main dish was paprika, mint yogurt marinated chicken kabobs. For the side, I needed something with a punch of flavor that would be OK cold. After carousing the food blog network, I came across this salad on 101 Cookbooks. A little hesitant and with not much time on my hands, I gave in to the canned beans. Cringing as I winded the can opener along the rim of my lovely canned white beans, then my even more lovely black beans, my heart almost didn't let me do it.
adapted from 101 Cookbooks
3 cups chopped carrots
1 clove of garlic
1 can of white beans
1 can of black beans
1/4 cup chopped dill
salt & pepper to taste
for the vinaigrette
1/4 cup good olive oil
juice of half a lemon
2 shallots diced
salt & pepper to taste
In a medium bowl throw in the beans and dill. Lightly toss. When carrots are done roasting add to the beans, add the dill. Lightly toss once more.
In a small bowl whisk together all of the vinaigrette ingredients. Take a taste to test seasoning. You may need to add more salt/pepper. Lightly toss into the bean salad.
I have to admit that I was quite impressed with this bean salad. Consider it my ammo for the next pot luck picnic!
Friday, July 24, 2009
Speaking of sharing, a couple days ago, I thought it'd be fitting that I introduce this heavenly sheet cake to my new co-workers. What better way to put a smile on people's faces? Or test their will power ;-)
Below is the secret recipe that is not so secret anymore... I bet you can't have just one slice!
2 cups granulated sugar
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
2 sticks unsalted butter
1 cup Coca Cola
1/2 cup Buttermilk
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 beaten eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups Miniature Marshmallows
1 teaspoon Vanilla
For the Frosting
1 stick unsalted butter
6 tablespoons Coca Cola
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
1 box powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Slivered Almonds (Optional)
In a bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder & salt. Over medium heat, in a saucepan melt the butter with the Coca Cola and cocoa until mixture begins to boil. Pour over the flour mixture. In another bowl, beat the eggs, buttermilk and vanilla. Pour this egg mixture into the flour/chocolate mixture. Add the marshmallows and stir. The marshmallows will float to the top.
Pour and spread evenly over a sheet cake pan. Bake for about 20 minutes. Or until a toothpick test comes out clean.
In the meantime, in a saucepan over medium heat, combine the 1 stick of butter, Coca Cola and cocoa. Once melted, remove from heat and stir in the powdered sugar and vanilla. Immediately pour frosting over cake once cake is removed from the oven. Sprinkle some slivered almonds over the top and voila! Serve once cooled... even better the next day!
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Now I’m definitely not a vegan, but I most definitely enjoy my fresh fruits and veggies. That’s why Mary’s is my go to place for that perfect salad, vegan entree and some of the best smoothies in town… I’m nuts about their smoothies. Packed with raw, organic and tropical nutrients, they taste amazing! "Pure energy food" all of her smoothies contain no soy or processed ingredients and are 100% raw. Our society is so accustomed to the typical Jamba that we forget natural can taste good.
One of my all time fav's is their Pistachio Mint Smoothie. Yes, I said Pistachio and Mint! However, the Purple Sky has a lot more to offer… Its ingredients may surprise any smoothie aficionado. Check it out! And if you are inspired, give it a shot!
1/4 cup or small handful of fresh or frozen blueberries
1 whole banana
1 heaping teaspoon of Hemp seeds
1 small handful of Mint leaves
1 large scoop of ice cubes
1/4 to 1/2 cup Raw Almond mylk*
2 tablespoons Raw Agave Nectar
1 cup sprouted almonds
8 dates w/o pits
4 cups high quality Water
100 S. Fir Street
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Tonight is our first dinner party in ages and the new kitchen is in full force! For dessert we made a no fuss crumble from the Barefoot Contessa At Home cookbook. Ina never ceases to amaze me! I love her recipes as they are so simple yet so delicious. A recipe for any cook, this Peach & Blueberry Crumble is easy to assemble and doesn't require a grandiose presentation. You simply plop the mixture into a ramekin and bake... let the oven do the work for you.
from Barefoot Contessa At Home
For the fruit
2 pounds firm, ripe peaches (6-8 peaches)
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 cup fresh blueberries (1 pint)
For the Crumble
1 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 pound (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, diced
First preheat your oven to 350 degrees
Immerse peaches in boiling water for 30 seconds to a minute, just until their skins peel off easily. Place them immediately in a bowl of cold water. Peel the peaches, slice into thick wedges, and place in a large bowl. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, granulated sugar, and flour. Toss well. Gently mix in the blueberries. Allow the mixture to marinate for about 5 minutes. Spoon the mixture into ramekins or custard cups.
For the topping, combine the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, and the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitter with a paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until the butter is the size of peas. Rub the mixture with your fingertips until it's in big crumbles, then sprinkle evenly over the fruit. Place the ramekins on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until the tops are browned and crisp and the juices are bubbly. Serve warm or at room temperature.
I made mine earlier in the day and stored them unbaked until dinner time.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
However, with each new City I’ve gained a sense of curiosity and discovery, making each City my own. These new traits have inspired me to discover Ventura, the small, quiet town I grew up in. This was a City that never wavered to change, that is, until I moved away.
One place in particular is Main Street. Downtown housed only a highly flammable costume shop (how could anyone forget Bonnies), which did in fact almost burn down. Now, Downtown Main Street stretches a couple blocks showcasing clothing boutiques, wine bars, restaurants and spas! Que paso!? Gotta love progress.
Some of my new favorite places are Mary’s Secret Garden, Paradise Pantry, Brook’s Restaurant & Sidecar Restaurant.
I hope to use this blog as a place of reference for anyone interested in visiting Ventura. Reviews are so fun to write!
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Stone fruits come to mind as our plum tree’s branches tickle the ground due to their weight from the plump, purple plums. The apricot tree, one I didn’t always appreciate, stands majestically next to the tomato garden, its ripening fruits slowly turning to a vibrant orange… I think I’m in heaven! Summer is almost here and we are baking a rustic Galette!
adapted from Martha Stewart's Baking
Cornmeal Pate Brisee
2 cups whole grain pastry flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, cold, cut into small pieces
1/4 - 1/2 cup ice water
Place the pastry flour, cornmeal, salt and sugar in the bowl of a food processor and pulse several times to combine. Add the butter chunks, and process until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. With the machine running, pour the ice water through the feed tube in a slow, steady stream, until the dough just holds together. According to Martha, do not process for more than 30 seconds.
Turn out the dough onto a clean work surface. Divide in half, and place each half on a piece of plastic wrap. Flatten each to form a disk. Wrap, and refrigerate from at least an hour to up to a full day. (whoops, I had mine in the fridge for 30 minutes and it turned out fine!)
Whole Wheat pastry flour for dusting
1/2 recipe of Cornmeal Pate Brisee
1 cup walnuts + 1 tablespoon sugar
12 fresh apricots, pitted and sliced into sixths
1 cup raspberries
1/2 cup granulated sugar
juice of 1/2 lemon (about 1 tablespoons)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 pinch of salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
sanding sugar for sprinkling
Roll out dough on a floured surface into a 14-inch round, about 1/8 inch thick. Transfer dough to a large parchment-lined baking sheet. Refrigerate until ready to use, up to 1 hour. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
In a food processor, pulse the walnuts and sugar until a coarse meal. Set aside.
In a large bowl, gently toss together apricots, raspberries, sugar, lemon juice, cornstarch and salt. Sprinkle about 1/2 cup of walnut meal on dough. Next, Arrange fruit mixture on top of dough, leaving a 2 inch border all the way around. Fold border over the fruit mixture, press gently to adhere the folds.
Brush edges of dough with egg and sprinkle with sanding sugar and walnut meal. Bake until crust is golden brown or, the best indicator, when the juices in the galette are bubbling. It should take about an hour. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack to cool the galette. Best served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
Psst... This dessert is perfect for the non-perfectionist in all of us!
Monday, June 22, 2009
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Sunday, May 17, 2009
adapted from Cooking Light
2 tablespoons sugar
3 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1/4 butter softened
1 tablespoon grated lemon grind
4 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (16 ounce) container reduced fat sour cream
2 cups fresh blueberries
For the glaze...
1 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
hint of vanilla
In one bowl combine dry ingredients and mix well. In a mixer combine the 1 3/4 cups of sugar, butter and lemon rind. Once well blended, add the eggs slowly one at a time. Next, beat in the vanilla and sour cream. Mixture should appear light and fluffy. At medium speed, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet. In another bowl, toss the blueberries in 2 tablespoons flour until coated. Fold into the batter. Bake for about 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes then flip over onto a wire rack to cool some more.
The glaze is super simple. In a bowl combine the lemon juice, powdered sugar and a drop of vanilla. Drizzle over the bundt cake.
This cake is great the next morning with coffee... unfortunately, it doesn't always make it to the next day at my parent's house!
Here's a picture of my mom and me in Sonoma... the trip I've referenced a couple of times in previous blogs. Gotta love Spring flowers!
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
Quinoa is an amazing grain that you should incorporate into your diet no matter what. Two things that I love about Quinoa: it cooks in less than 20 minutes and it is so easy to prepare. One thing that I don't recommend for quinoa is eating it plain. Instead, incorporate this awesomely complex carb with vegetables and protein.
1 cup Quinoa
2 cups water
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/3 cup diced carrots
1/3 cup green peas (fresh or defrosted)
1/3 cup cucumber, peeled & diced
1/4 cup fresh dill
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Optional: 1/2 cup precooked chickpeas
Cook the quinoa in the water on high temp. Once the water starts to boil turn the temperature to low and simmer. Should take about 15 minutes, or until the grain is translucent. Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
In a large pot of boiling water blanch the carrots for 30 seconds, strain and drain in cold water to stop the cooking. Add the chopped vegetables and chickpeas to the cooked quinoa and toss together. Lastly, toss in the fresh herbs, vinegar and olive oil.
This dish is great served immediately or the next day!
Psst... Quinoa is a great carb choice if you live your life gluten free!
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
adapted from Elie Kruger The Food You Crave
1/2 pound asparagus
6 cups low sodium chicken broth
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 fennel bulb, chopped
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
3/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3 ounces baby spinach leaves (about 3 cups lightly packed)
1 cup frozen peas
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Here comes the garden! Stir in the peas and spinach and cook until the spinach is wilted. Add the asparagus last and cook until everything is hot and well combined. Take off the burner and stir in the Parmesan cheese.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Bring a saute pan filled with water to a boil. Blanche the peas until crisp-tender and bright green (approximately 3 minutes). Remove from the water and set aside. Melt the butter in a saute pan and add the peas. Stir in the mint and lemon zest. Saute the peas until heated through (approximately 2 to 3 minutes). Season with salt to taste. Serve immediately.
What better way to celebrate spring than with refreshing mint, sweet sugar snap peas, and a zest of lemon! ... Maybe mint mojitos?
Psst... I used spearmint from the garden, the most accessible variety.
Sunday, April 5, 2009
Old Fashioned Cake with Minted Strawberry Sauce
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Although I don't have the original recipe, I do have Ina Garten's Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe. This is an excellent recipe for a good cookie dough that you can easily "make your own." As a cook with no professional training, these are the recipes that I look for and learn to love: the ones that survive any alteration or addition and always taste yummy. Ina calls for chocolate chips and walnuts, but I went for the monster effect - M&M's.
adapted from Barefoot Contessa's Recipe
1/2 lb unsweetened butter (at room temperature)
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 eggs (at room temperature)
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups M&M candies
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
In a mixer combine the butter and sugar, beat well. Slowly add the vanilla extract and each egg one at a time so that ingredients are well incorporated. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. In two waves, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet. Once everything is combined, pour the M&Ms into the dough and quickly mix together. Don't over mix!
On a parchment lined cookie sheet, drop heaping spoonfulls of dough an inch and a half apart. Bake for 12-15 minutes. My oven is a little hot, so I cooked mine for 12 minutes. Should yield about 2 dozen.
Sunday, March 22, 2009
For anyone who sees Sunday as the day to get organized and focused, a healthy egg scramble is just the fuel you need. Eggs are packed with vitamins and protein, and chard is full of vitamin C and flavonoids. A little prosciutto and onion for the taste buds, and you are set to take on the day!
2 egg whites
1 cup chopped chard
1/4 cup torn prosciutto bits
1/4 white onion diced
salt & pepper to taste
1 tablespoon water
Separate the eggs from the whites in a bowl. Add the egg to the egg whites plus 1 tablespoon of water. Whisk well.
In a saute pan, add cooking oil and diced onion. Saute on medium heat for about 2 minutes, then add torn up prosciutto bits. Let the flavors marinate for about 5 minutes, then add the chard and continue to saute until chard appears wilted. Quickly pour in the egg mixture. Using a wooden spoon scramble ingredients together until egg is fully cooked. Salt & pepper to taste. I would wait to add the salt as the prosciutto adds saltiness that may be just enough for your taste buds.
This is a quick and satisfying meal for one on the run! Enjoy!
Sunday, March 1, 2009
Speaking of seasons, this morning is the first day of March. Spring is on its way, and I'm ready to take on a new adventure - seasonal soup. I pulled out a cookbook from one of my dear friends Breanne, called Soup for All Seasons. The recipe titled "Spinach, Parsley & Honey", (really, honey) had all the qualities I was looking for - vegetarian, satisfying, a bit of sweetness and authenticity. This is sure to keep me satisfied through the first couple rainy spring days of March.
adapted from Soup for All Seasons
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large carrot, finely chopped or grated
2-3 sticks of celery, chopped
1 small onion, finely diced
1 quart vegetable stock
1/2 cup water
5 ounces baby spinach
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
3 green onions, chopped
4 basil leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
6 ounces canned tomato paste
1 drop Worcestershire sauce
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
In a large soup pan sautee the carrot, onion and celery in the olive oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes. The onions should become somewhat translucent while the carrots and celery will become more vibrant in color. Pour in the vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Let simmer for around 8 minutes. Next, add the spinach, herbs, honey and tomato paste. Stir quickly to combine all the flavors then simmer rapidly for 5 minutes. Now this is the hard part: Pour the mixture into a blender and puree everything together, leaving some texture. I used a measuring cup and blended the soup cup by cup, leaving some chunks of carrot, onion and spinach. This is difficult as the soup will be hot and has the potential of splattering everywhere! Return the soup to the soup pan and add the drop of Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper to taste. Re-heat gently for 2-3 minutes and serve.
I topped mine off with a quick homemade basil pesto (basil, olive oil & salt) and some homemade croutons.
For the croutons, I simply sliced up my favorite whole wheat bread into cubes, tossed them in olive oil and salt and baked under 400 degrees fahrenheit for about 10-12 minutes.
Monday, February 23, 2009
This recipe was a surprise, as I had no clue what the results would be like. I had a feeling the salsa would add a zang and the brown rice flour some nice texture. But I had no idea if it'd be the right zang nor the right texture. After the first bite, I was pleasantly surprised and knew this just had to be my next post. The combination worked perfectly. So, for inspiration to all those who think they can't cook or have no time to cook, first go to Trader Joe's then make these turkey burgers! Easy, healthy and delicious... Enjoy!
3/4 pounds all white, ground turkey meat
3 tablespoons Trader Joe's Salsa Verde (or any salsa you have on hand)
1/4 cup brown rice flour
salt to taste
Buns of your liking (I'd use Poppy seed Kaiser rolls)
Combine all ingredients together in a bowl. Warm some canola oil in a fry pan over medium heat. While oil is heating, form turkey burger patties with your hands then place on the hot fry pan (I live in San Francisco and have no grill nor a patio, so the fry pan is the best option, however, a BBQ will work great!). Grill/Fry on your pan until done to your liking. Dress'em up or eat them like Atkin would... you are sure to love Trader Joe afterwards!
Psst ... I made these somewhat on a whim so you may have to alter measurements to your liking. I'm sure to redo this recipe again sometime and promise to take better notes and a better picture.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
This crab salad is super easy. All you need are fresh ingredients and a fresh approach to presenting the dish. What I love most about this salad is that it is versatile. Ellie serves the salad in baked filo dough cups, however, you could easily serve it in a corn tortilla for crab tacos or wrap it in rice paper for a fun take on spring rolls. I decided to serve mine "spa" style with a lovely leaf of lettuce. I know, I know, this is not really a satiating meal, but after the weekend I was craving a light lunch (I also didn't have the filo dough on hand)... Next time around I'm going to give the crab spring rolls a shot.
Be sure to pick through the crab for any shells or cartilage as this is not a pleasant surprise when chewing. I put together the salad the night before in order to marinade the ingredients. Lastly, the radicchio is my own special ingredient (which, surprisingly I did have on hand, go figure). It adds a bit of a bite and a fun burst of red color.
1/2 pound lump crab meat, picked over for shells and cartilage
1 stalk celery, finely diced (1/4 cup)
1/2 cup peeled and finely diced ripe mango
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped cilantro
1/4 cup coarsely chopped radicchio
For the Dressing
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons olive oil
Served any way you like!
Psst... check out my recipe on YumSugar.com!
Saturday, February 14, 2009
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
8 ounces (2 sticks) butter, softened
2 1/4 cups sugar
3 large eggs plus 1 egg white
1 cup whole milk
1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups coarsely pureed strawberries (save some for garnishing)
4 cups + powdered sugar
4 tablespoons butter or margarine, very soft.
4 - 6 tablespoons of the pureed strawberries
1 tablespoon red sprinkles (optional)
squeeze of a lemon
Fresh strawberries or chocolate shavings for decoration
Preheat oven to 350F degrees
Line your standard muffin tins with paper liners, I prefer white. Whisk together the dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a mixer cream butter and sugar until light and fluggy. Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating after each addition. I like to crack mine into a liquid measuring cup and pour them in one at a time.
Reduce speed to low. In a separate bowl, mix together the milk and vanilla. Add dry ingredients to butter mixture in 3 additions, alternating with wet (milk & vanilla) and ending with dry. Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl so ingredients are well combined. Divide the batter among the cupcake cups, and fill each about 2/3 full.
Bake for about 20 minutes or until toothpick tester comes out clean (mine took about 20 minutes). Let cool in tins on wire racks. Per Martha, cupcakes will keep, covered, for up to 2 days.
For the frosting, in a bowl, combine the butter, powdered sugar, strawberries, lemon juice and sprinkles in a mixer or with a hand mixer. Beat on very high until ingredients are combined. Continue adding more powdered sugar until frosting reaches your preferred thickness.
Pipe or spoon frosting onto the cooled cupcakes. I topped mine with fresh strawberries and/or chocolate shavings. Although you don't get the typical cupcake look with this frosting, the results taste awesome!
Happy Valentine's Day! Be sure to give your loved ones a hug... or a strawberry cupcake.
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Henry of Henry's Olives, a new foodie friend that is the brother of my dad's good friend Murray, met up with me along with his friend Tom (that was a mouth full). Both were there to network and investigate as I was just there to troll the aisles and observe... and eat. There were famous chefs, major international corporations, new products galore, and Ina Garten. Yes, Ina Garten, my favorite person in the entire world - when put in food context.
A couple of highlights were:
- My first absolutely amazing cappuccino that was made by the San Diego coffee roasting company Cafe Calabria. Served in a porcelain cup, every sip was satiny and smooth. They are definitely committed to roasting as if it were a "Culinary Art".
- The peanut butter creations by P.B. Loco. This redefines eating peanut butter out of the jar. They have flavor combinations that range from Sumatra Cinnamon and Raisin to Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. P.B. Loco is all natural, so the guilt of eating out of the jar is somewhat removed. I can't wait to find this product in San Francisco!
- The awesomeness that is developing in the natural foods world: an obvious collaboration of natural and organic products with socially responsible endeavors. Not only are foodie entrepreneurs committed to local and organic food but they are combining these efforts with their commitment to social responsibility. Some of my favorite companies are HonestTea and SweetRiot Chocolates.
The key is in the sauce! But of course using Guerrero Tortillas, Queso Fresco and fresh organic eggs will improve the results ten fold. Top it off with a little cilantro, fresh green onion and avocado for the perfect Sunday morning brunch. This recipe is one of my favorites so be sure to check it out!
1 large tomato
1 clove of garlic
1 pinch of oregano
1 pinch of sea salt & pepper
about a 1/4 cup of water
Oil for frying
2 tortillas sliced into one-half inch squares
1/2 cup diced green onion
For the sauce