Sunday, December 21, 2014

C is for: Candy Cane Jelly Shots

Ho ho ho.

I'm like the Santa Claus of jelly shots.

Except, you know, without the beard and big belly. But I do have a bowl full of jelly... shots.

These ones are fun and festive for Christmas because they look and taste like candy canes. I used my little trick where I tilt the shot glasses on a slant, and I used peppermint schnapps with red food coloring to achieve the candy cane flavor.

(Truth be told, I don't love candy canes. Or peppermint. But I do love jelly shots).

Head on over to Tablespoon to snag the recipe. Merry Christmas everyone!


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

C is for: Cranberry Salsa

I randomly ended up with Thanksgiving Day off this year, and since I just can't help myself, I decided to take the opportunity to go visit my friends Kim, John and their baby Nora at their new home in Washington D.C.

I randomly met this couple on a plane ride to Mexico, and as they say, the rest is history. I was a bridesmaid in their St. Louis wedding, and I even threw Kim a bacon-themed bridal shower while we were both still living in San Francisco.

Kim loves cooking and entertaining just as much as I do, and on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, she invited some of their friends over for food, drinks and games. Aside from the homemade pizza and cheese/charcuterie board (which I overindulged to the point of making myself sick), she made her go-to party snack: cranberry salsa. It's so simple but so yummy and perfect for holiday gatherings, so I figured I would share it on the blog.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

C is for: Caramel Apple Jelly Shots

Someone asked me today if I'm doing anything Thanksgiving related on the blog this week.

Oh yeah. Thanksgiving. One of the biggest food holidays of the year.

And I'm a food blogger.

Yeah.... I should probably do something.

I'll admit, due to my recent London vacation, I did kind of drop the ball on the blog this year with regards to turkey day. Last year was great because my family and I celebrated a week early, which allowed me to test out a new turkey cooking method and create some brie mashed potatoes.

But... not to fear. I still have a delicious (and awesome) addition to your Thanksgiving celebrations.

Who doesn't love boozy jelly shots at family gatherings?!? These ones simply use apple cider and caramel vodka to create one of my favorite creations yet. To get the recipe, head over to Tablespoon. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

B is for: British Holiday {My London Bucket List}

Umbrella Art near Borough Market
Here's the thing about traveling: the more you do it, the more you crave it.

It's called wanderlust and it's sort of addicting.

So when I returned home from Greece this summer, I almost immediately began planning my next adventure.

My Aussie friends Jenna and Ben (whose wedding I attended in Australia with my mom in 2012), moved to London from SF around the same time I moved to Connecticut. I've been dying to visit and November seemed like as good a time as any. (My theory: since it's always grey and rainy in London, I wouldn't be missing out on any good weather back home).

Additionally, I planned to meet up with my college friend Breege who lives just south of London and my friend Max who lives in Prague.


I planned my stay for one week, and in the end this didn't feel like enough time to do everything I wanted. London is a gigantic city with a ton of history and cool things to see (and eat, and drink). Because of this, it's best to really prioritize what sights and activities are most important to you. In order to narrow it down, I consulted several friends who either currently live there or have lived there in the past and read several "London Bucket Lists" like this one and this one. There was no chance I could even attempt to do it all even if I tried, so I came up with my own personal London Bucket List and have shared it with you below.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

B is for: Birds & Bubbles {Restaurant Review}

Finally! 

A restaurant that completely validates my view on food and wine pairing. If you know me well, you know that I will pretty much drink the bubbly with anything. But that doesn't mean it goes with everything (though in my mind it does unless I'm eating a big juicy steak or something).

Many might argue that it also does not go with fried chicken. Well, sorry to break it you you but you're wrong (or agree to disagree). The bubbles and acidity provide a perfect way to cut through the fattiness of the chicken. I think the dry citrus flavors of the sparkling wine make an awesome pairing with the salty, peppery fried chicken.

Chef Sarah Simmons, you are speaking to my soul with the creation of "Birds and Bubbles" restaurant on Forsythe Street in NYC. And for that, I thank you.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

B is for: Blue Cheese Stuffed Bosc Pears with Balsamic Glaze {+Arethusa al Tavolo Restaurant Review}

Inspiration comes in all shapes and sizes.

I often draw mine for this blog based on a number of things. The alphabet (e is for eat!), the current season, fresh produce, experiences, adventures, and restaurants have all sparked my creativity when coming up with a new blog post.

These pears fit into all of the above.

My mom was here visiting last week, and at the top of her agenda was to experience the fall foliage that New England has to offer this time of year.

Originally, I had planned to take an overnight trip to Vermont since I have never been. Unfortunately, I injured my back right before her visit and suddenly a 3+ hour drive didn't sound like the best of ideas.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

B is for: Bubbles, Bikes & Baguettes {Adventures in Sonoma & Napa}

"I only drink champagne on two occasions. When I am in love and when I am not." -Coco Chanel

Anyone who knows me is well aware of my enthusiasm (obsession?) with bubbles. For me, sparkling wine is not merely limited to toasts or apertifs. I will drink it at a bar (providing they have a decent bottle), I will drink it with my entree, I will drink it on a random Tuesday while I'm working on my blog.

My friend Laura shares this love, and it's our mutual appreciation that sparked our "Bubbles, Bikes & Baguettes" trip. Originally, we planned to do it while I was still living in SF, but then Laura got pregnant with her second child, so we postponed. And then I moved 3,000 miles away. 

But never fear! Not even geography could keep us from living out our dreams!

Monday, October 13, 2014

A is for: Acorn Squash Stuffed with Apples & Quinoa

When I first told people I was moving to the East Coast after ten years in California, generally their first reaction was: "Those winters are brutal."

But it was almost always followed up with a secondary comment: "But you will love autumn."

Of course, both statements are absolutely true. Winter was pretty rough last year, and they're saying this year is supposed to be even worse. (Grrrrreaaaat.)

This makes it especially important to embrace and enjoy everything that New England fall has to offer.

Recently, I went apple picking with my friend Adam. I made sure not to go too crazy with my apple and pear bounty, but I knew I had to make something apple-related for the blog.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

A is for: "ABC" Tamales

So I have this list.

It's a running list that includes blog ideas, that is, of course, organized alphabetically. And since very early in the writing of the list, the "T" section has included: "tamales."

It has long been something I have wanted to try, but have avoided due to all of the stories and cautions.

"They're hard."

"They're time consuming."

"They're not to be tackled alone."

And while all of these things are true, tamales are also fun, and totally worth the effort. Especially if you have an enthusiastic partner in crime.

My friend Kate fits that bill perfectly. We have been wanting to cook together pretty much since we met. So when our schedules finally coincided and I suggested tamales, she accepted without hesitation.

Monday, September 29, 2014

A is for: Apple Pie Moonshine, & other Tablespoon Treats

Several people have commented that I've been a little MIA on the blog recently.

While this is true, it doesn't mean I haven't been busy in the kitchen OR blogging.

As many of you know, I write for the website, tablespoon.com a couple times a month.

It's a fun collaboration because they solicit ideas from all of their bloggers, and then assign posts for each month. It ends up being a fun blend of my ideas and theirs.

For example, this Apple Pie "Moonshine" is DELICIOUS. Perfect for a fall get together or just because. Here's the link to the post, and I've also included some links below to some of my other recent Tablespoon treats!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Z is for: Zucchini, Corn and Feta Fritters

I refuse to believe that summer is over.

In fact, there's a good chance I'm in full-on denial.

Therefore, my inspiration for these little fritters was two-fold:

1.) Summer means vegetables like zucchini and corn, so they feed my denial (and my general hunger).

2.) Today was GORGEOUS. Not fall-like at all. About 75 and sunny.

So when I strolled through the mini-farmers market set up in the Whole Foods parking lot, autumn was not even a blip on my radar. (Until I saw Halloween decorations at the hardware store.. wah wah).

And since all of the local farmers still have plentiful zucchini and corn, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to fry up some fritters.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Y is for: Yiamas! {My Big Fat Greek Vacation}

Yiamas.

It was the first word I learned when I got to Greece, and it was really the only one I needed.

"Cheers."

...The perfect way to describe my magical vacation to the Greek Islands this summer.

When my friend Sam messaged me a few months ago, casually asking if I was interested in going to Greece, I didn't need much convincing. (Like, zero).

I booked my flight two days later. I was in desperate need of an adventure, and I consistently list Santorini as one of my top 5 places I've ever visited.

The plan for this trip was to stay on a smaller, lesser known island called Paros. I loved the idea of a more remote, "locals" destination. I was in.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

X is for: Xavier Steak Grilled Cheese Sliders

There are only so many foods that start with "X" you can feature before you start running out of ideas (or options).

I've made Xacuti, I've eaten it at a restaurant. I've baked with xantham gum. I've used Xeri Mizithra cheese in a recipe, as well as XO sauce.

But my very first "X" post... was something so simple, yet so perfect for an alphabet-themed food blog.

Xavier Steak.

It's a real thing. And I don't know why.

Steak, topped with asparagus and swiss cheese.

Thank you, Xavier.

Whoever you are.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

W is for: Watermelon "Keg"

This might be my new favorite party trick.

(Probably one you should try out this weekend).

Take a watermelon (or a pumpkin if it's fall), hollow it out, add a spigot.

VOILA! You've got a creative drink dispenser!

How cool is that?!

(Way cool).

To get the step-by-step (plus a yummy recipe for watermelon punch), click here to head over to Tablespoon!


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

V is for: Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding

When it comes to breakfast, I’m generally an egg person, with an emphasis on savory over sweet. To me, there’s nothing better than cutting into a perfectly cooked sunny side up egg, and letting the yolk serve as a delicious sauce for the rest of your breakfast plate.

That said, it’s good to change it up every now and again, especially when you need a quick breakfast before flying out the door on your way to work.

That’s why I’ve been enjoying this chia seed “pudding” recently. You can make it the night before, and you can even make a double or triple batch to have breakfast ready to go for the next couple days.

It also uses chia seeds, which are considered a superfood. They are a great source of protein, fiber, antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids and much, much more. They also have this cool property in which they absorb liquid and serve as a thickening agent, which makes them great for turning almond milk into pudding. (Or as a binder for meatloaf!)

T is for: Tablespoon Treats {floral ice cubes & boozy lemon bars}

So... story of my life, I'm super duper behind on blog stuff. (Shocking, I know)

Not just coming up with NEW creations for the blog, but simply posting stuff I'd done before my life got crazy last month.

I was literally home 6 days in June.

SIX DAYS, PEOPLE!

That's ridiculous.

It makes me tired just thinking about it.

But.... any-WHO.

I made a couple of cool things for Tablespoon before I left, including the floral ice cubes and Boozy Strawberry Lemonade Bars (topped with spiked gelatin of course). Both perfect for summer BBQs and get togethers (like... say, July 4th?) Enjoy!


Thursday, June 12, 2014

T is for: Tortilla Espanola {recipe remake}

I have two stories to share with you today.

One involves my Spanish host mom, and the other involves a frittata pan. (Trust me, it will all make sense in a minute).

When I lived in Barcelona back in 2002, I fell in love with tapas. I was enamored with the idea of standing around a bar with friends, eating small bites and drinking wine.

One of my favorites was "tortilla espanola." This is not a Mexican tortilla that you eat with tacos. In Spain, tortilla is an egg dish. It's more of a Spanish omelette that is often served room temperature as a snack (or tapa).

My host mom, Dolores Berga, often made variations of this for dinner, and just like her potaje, I took careful notes so that I could recreate it back in the states.

I loved it so much, that when I spied a special frittata pan at Williams Sonoma several years ago, I purchased it specifically for making tortilla. (Also, I'm addicted to kitchen gadgets, but that's another story). However, the pan is so versatile, I used it for making other things, including eggs almost every day. I was unaware that you're NOT supposed to use non-stick spray on these non-stick pans. And yet I did. Every. Single. Day. Apparently it makes them lose the non-stick qualities after time (I feel silly for not knowing this). So, after six years, I finally came to this realization when my eggs began sticking regardless of the amount of oil or spray I used. It was a sad day.

Needless to say, I decided to purchase a brand new set of frittata pans. And it only seemed fitting that I break them in with Dolores' tortilla espanola recipe.

Friday, June 6, 2014

T is for: Triple Crown Jello Shots {White Carnation}

I feel like a majority of my blog posts these days start with an apology for being so behind on my blog posts.

So instead of apologizing, let's celebrate the fact that I'm back just in time for California Chrome's bid for a Triple Crown at the Belmont Stakes.

Unlike the Kentucky Derby, which has the classic Mint Julep, the Belmont Stakes sort of has an identity crisis when it comes to the race's official cocktail. For the last two years, the official drink has been the "Belmont Jewel," which is bourbon, lemonade and pomegranate. Before that, it was the "Belmont Breeze," which calls for bourbon, sherry, orange, cranberry and mint. And up until 1998, it was the White Carnation (significant because of the flowers that adorn the winner). The ingredients for that drink are: orange juice, vodka, peach schnapps, soda water and a splash of cream garnished with orange slices.

So when BLS asked me to come up with a jello shot version fitting of a Triple Crown bid, I just had to go OG. Plus, it tastes sort of like a fuzzy navel, which is a win in my book. Good luck to California Chrome and click here to head over to Busch League Sports for the recipe!

Sunday, May 4, 2014

S is for: Strawberry Daiquiri Jelly Shots

So May is National Strawberry Month. And apparently to me that translates to: "National Combine Booze and Strawberries Month."

My strawberry cilantro margaritas were a hit for Cinco de Mayo, but why stop there? It wouldn't be a month at eisforeat.com without a jelly shot recipe.

These strawberry daiquiri shots are reminiscent of my strawberry cheesecake shots I posted on the blog in May of 2012.

The best part about both shots is the vessel that holds them is edible so you get the boozy fun of a jelly shot combined with a deliciously sweet strawberry. The alcohol in each bite is minimal, so they really become more dessert than cocktail.

To get the recipe and see the technique, head on over to Tablespoon.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

S is for: Strawberry Cilantro Margaritas

You never know when inspiration is going to strike.

Today, it happened as I was driving home from my hair appointment, and feeling grateful for the burst of sunny weather. (We've been in torrential downpour mode here in Connecticut this week and it's yet to hit 75 degrees this year).

The sun also made me think of... no joke... photography lighting. I decided I must take advantage of the gorgeous light.

But what to make?

Something easy. Hmmm... A cocktail.

Something springy. Well, May is National Strawberry Month.

Something festive. Cinco de Mayo is in four days. ARRIBA!!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

R is for: Ravioli {mushroom & leek}

RAVIOLIS!!

I've been saying this for weeks.

So excited to make homemade ravioli. Ever since I made homemade spaghetti with my pasta attachment for my Kitchenaid mixer, I couldn't wait to get my hands on some sutffed pasta.

As my faithful blog readers are aware, I was recently abiding by a strict, low-carb diet for a couple months. I'm not necessarily going fully off-diet and eating whatever I want, but our unofficial deadline of our Mexico trip sort of sealed the cutoff for strict no-carb living.

Enter these delightful pillows of pasta dough and mushrooms and cheese and butter.

MMMMMMM.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Q is for: Quesarito {with Chipotle copycat steak/chicken & cilantro rice}

Get ready to have your mind blown.

Ready?

There is secret menu at Chipotle.

I know, right?

I mean, we all know about the secret menu at In N Out (animal style FTW), but this takes things to another level.

If you were already aware of this amazing fact, then I apologize for the letdown. If you were in the dark, as I was... well, then you're welcome.

Especially because one of the things on this secret menu is something called a "quesarito." A burrito. Wrapped in a quesadilla.

Mind. Blown. Again.

Now I realize for blog purposes, that is not much of a recipe, (more of a genius suggestion... sort of like my suggestion to also use quesadillas for taco shells), so I decided to also try my hand at recreating the cilantro lime rice and the grilled steak/chicken that I often get inside my chipotle burritos (or more often these days... burrito bowls).

Saturday, April 19, 2014

P is for: Peeps Jelly Shots {for Easter}

A million apologies for the blog hiatus recently.

Not that I'm one to make excuses, but I'm going to give you a bunch of excuses right now. I was in Miami for work, then Mexico for a wedding, and today, I finish up a stretch of working eleven in a row.

But tomorrow is Easter!

And I am excited to say I have the day off and will be spending it in NYC with my boyfriend's family.

I will not be bringing these jelly shots (I'm bringing strawberry ones).

But YOU should! This play on the popular marshmallow Easter treat uses marshmallow vodka! To "peep" these Peeps jelly shots, hop on over to Tablespoon. Happy Easter!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

P is for: Poppers {chip-crusted jalapenos stuffed with bacon & cheese}

As much as I love the simplicity of the jalapeno poppers I often make on the grill, I'm really loving this new version.

It's a little more involved, as it uses three types of cheese (cheeeeeeese), bacon (duh), and are encrusted in delicious tortilla chips (bonus!)

Also, I baked them instead of frying, so they're totttttalllly healthy. (JK, not at all. But they are less messy than frying).

They are, however, almost as easy as regular ol' poppers... with just a few extra ingredients and steps.

To get the recipe, just head on over to Tablespoon and get poppin'!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

P is for: PB&J Grilled Cheese with Bacon Jam

Don't you dare.

Don't you DARE knock this genius creation until you've tried it.

I know what you're thinking.

"Peanut Butter & Jelly... grilled cheese??"

Yes.

And it's heavenly.

Think about it... two of your favorite childhood sandwiches combined in the most delightful of ways to create a super gourmet, adult grilled cheese.

Plus, April is National Grilled Cheese month, so it's a time to celebrate and reinvent the beloved grilled cheese and take it to new heights.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

P is for: Pizza {in 3 minutes!}

Guys.

You gotta check this out.

This is a pretty cool little trick for cooking pizza.

Yes, I do own a pizza stone (duh, I own like every kitchen gadget know to man). BUT... even a pizza stone loving person like myself can get down with this cast iron skillet method.

By using an UBER-hot cast iron skillet (like one that's been heating for... say, 10 minutes on the stove), you can cook ooey, gooey, crispy pizza in three minutes flat.

Three. Minutes. Flat.

Check out how I did it by heading over to Tablespoon.

Like, now.

Monday, March 24, 2014

O is for: Onion Bacon Jam

Top 5 breakfast condiments. Ready, go.

Here's my list, (recently amended):
5.) Ketchup (for potatoes or hash browns)
4.) Butter (for toast, pancakes, etc)
3.) REAL Maple Syrup (for pancackes, waffles, biscuits, etc)
2.) Hot Sauce (for egg dishes mostly, but also potatoes and other savory items)
1.) BACON JAM

You guys.

I am a hot sauce addict. ADDICT. I put it on everything.

And yet... bacon jam has shot to the top of my breakfast condiments list. Why? Because it is the perfect addition to pretty much any breakfast item. Sweet, savory... it doesn't matter. This delectable jam harmoniously encompasses both at the same time. Slather it on a breakfast sandwich with eggs and cheese (a French Toast BLT perhaps?) or smear it on a (bacon) waffle and top with maple syrup. It. Doesn't. Matter.

Not to mention the fact that its usefulness goes far beyond breakfast. Warm bread, pork, burgers, grilled cheese sandwiches, ice cream even??... the possibilities are endless.

Oh...

AND DID I MENTION IT'S MADE OUT OF BACON.

Debate over.

OK enough talk... let me tell you how to make this stuff.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

O is for: Olive & Caper Tapenade

People like to ask me all the time how I'm "coping" with the food scene in Central Connecticut.

While it's not even comparable to the likes of San Francisco or New York, we do actually have some really great eats here. The big difference is... there's probably like 10 of them instead of hundreds.

One of my favorite spots is a place called Plan B Burger, which features some pretty amazing burgers with some ridiculously awesome flavor combos. My go-to order there is the "West Coast" (go figure), which features a hand-ground juicy beef patty, avocado, a fried egg (heaven), and a kalamata olive mayo on a pretzel bun.

(Are you drooling yet?)

That delicious condiment is what inspired me to make this olive tapenade.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

N is for: Noodleless Pad Thai {with a Spiralizer}

So believe it or not, I’ve managed to stick with this Slow Carb diet for almost two months now (aside from my recent California vacation/food binge). I never thought I’d say this, but I feel fantastic. I seem to have more energy, and I’ve trimmed down to my pre-“SireSF” self. Even my skin seems healthier.

I have more motivation to work out because I’m actually seeing results. I’ve gotten over the hump of having these fits of what I call “salad rage” at the end of the week where I felt I might die a slow carb death of spinach and balsamic vinegar. 

Cheat day is filled with things like homemade macaroni and cheese or homemade pizza or a trip to Plan B burger instead of a large grab bag from Taco Bell. (What can I say? Moment(s) of weakness).

I think the key is finding ways to enjoy delicious things without the carbs to eat during the week. For example… this Noodleless Pad Thai. I already have a healthier Pad Thai recipe I posted a few months ago on the blog. This one takes it a step further and subs zucchini noodles for the rice noodles. No, it’s not exactly the same as real noodles…. But it IS just as delicious.

M is for: Mint Chocolate {Thin Mint} Jelly Shots

I have a confession to make. 
It’s kind of serious. 
I HATE chocolate and mint together. (dun dun DUNNNNN!) 
I love chocolate separately (duh), and mint ... well, it’s not my favorite but I don’t hate it. However, get them together and I run the other direction. I realize I'm in the minority in this situation, especially come Girl Scout cookie time. 
Everyone and their mom can’t get enough of the Thin Mint cookie. I fall more into the Tagalong or Do-si-do camp, but I would venture to say that most of America grabs for the little green box. 
But see, I’m not a selfish person. Just because **I** don’t enjoy the little mint-chocolate treats doesn’t mean I should deny the world a jelly shot version of the popular flavor combo.
And so, I present to you ... Thin Mint Jelly Shots! Head on over to Tablespoon to get the recipe.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

M is for: Mardi Gras Jelly Shots

Show us your beads!

Mardi Gras is a time to celebrate and indulge. It means “Fat Tuesday” in French, and it’s traditionally the day before the fasting season begins for Lent, which means lots of fatty foods and booze. 

Seems like the perfect time for jelly shots!

Since the traditional colors of this celebration are green, purple and gold, I decided to do a take on the ribbon shots featured at Christmas and for the Big Game. Add a few pearl candy “beads” and you’re in business!

To get the recipe, head on over to Tablespoon!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

L is for: Lobster Macaroni and Cheese

I've about had it with winter. 

I know, all my California friends are quietly mouthing "I told you so" after declaring I was moving to Connecticut about a year ago.

Today was awful. We already have mountains of snow piled up everywhere you turn, and today's weather couldn't decide if it wanted to snow or rain. I literally looked out the window this morning and it was snowing, and when I glanced back up a minute later, it had turned to rain. 

When I went to run errands, the rain was turning to ice as soon as it hit my windshield.

Awful.

It's the kind of weather that demands warm, comforting food. But it also makes you yearn for summer. This macaroni and cheese is the perfect blend of both things. Warm, comforting mac and cheese... paired with buttery chunks of lobster, a summertime staple in New England.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

L is for: Lentil Burgers with Mushrooms & Olives {Vegan & Gluten Free}

Sometimes my best work is done improvising.

I was originally going to make some sort of lentil dish with sautéed vegetables and kale. Something comforting, warm, healthy.

And then I remembered one very key thing.

Lentils are not photogenic.

They may taste good, but they do not look good.

But you know what they say...

When life gives you ugly lentils...

Make lentil burgers!

(Ok, so maybe only I say that).

Monday, February 3, 2014

K is for: Kitchen Sink Valentine's Day Cookies

Really these should be called Cupid Cookies.

Because, let's face it... if you make these for someone, they are likely to fall in love with you (if they haven't already).

They could also be called Crack Cookies, but that's not as cute sounding.

And I'm all about cute.

Especially on holidays.

These are my version of a Kitchen Sink cookie (or a compost cookie, or a garbage cookie, or whatever you call them). As you know, I'm not a baker, but I made a New Year's Resolution to become better at it. I've made these now three times, slightly tweaking each batch to make them what I feel to be truly perfect cookies. And crack. They're very addicting.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

J is for: Jelly Shots {for the "Big Game"}

If you're planning a party to watch football on, oh I don't know, say... Sunday, February 2nd... then you should probably make these jelly shots.

Because of my collaboration with tablespoon.com, I can't say the actual name of this football game, but if you don't know what I'm talking about then you should probably stop following this blog.

Sorry. That was kind of rude. (But true).

Anyways, this is a very festive way to kick off the festivities and you're sure to score points with your guests by making shots to coordinate with this year's teams (See what I did there?)

To get the step-by-step, head over to Tablespoon. Touchdown YOU!

Friday, January 24, 2014

I is for: Iceberg Lettuce Tacos with Slow Cooked Shredded Chicken

So I've been on this slow carb kick lately (which basically means I don't eat carbs or dairy during the week and then go crazy with whatever I want on Sundays). Oh! And wine. I can have red wine. So that's a win.

As difficult as it sounds, it's really not that bad. The cheat day gives you something to look forward to, and during the week, you just have to get a little creative.

Enter these "tacos."

You still get a little crunch from the iceberg lettuce, but you don't have to worry about the carbs from the tortillas.

To make them, I used my basic slow cooker shredded chicken recipe, which I realized I've never really posted on the blog. This chicken is super versatile... great for chili or tortilla soup, or as a filling for enchiladas (red or green!)

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

H is for: Habanero Carrot Hot Sauce

I'm a bit of a hot sauce addict.

Look in my cupboard and you'll find Sriracha, Tapatio, Franks and Cholula. My fridge generally has at least a couple different types of salsa as well. On eggs... it's a must. And lately, I've been using it a lot at dinner too. (On a bit of a diet, so salsa helps to flavor things without adding a lot of calories).

One of my favorite casual dinner and drink spots in West Hartford is a place called Bar Taco. Even though it's not traditional West Coast Mexican food, it helps satisfy my taco and tamale cravings.

They also have a super bomb trio of salsas they keep on the tables. One is a habanero sauce that you only need a few drops to do the trick.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

G is for: Gorgonzola Stuffed Buffalo Turkey Sliders

It's time to start planning those Game Day menus, and nothing says football like a big plate of Buffalo wings.

But let’s be honest… as delicious as they are, wings can be a little messy, especially at a party. Not to worry… there’s a way to replicate that tangy, spicy taste in a way everyone can enjoy… sliders!

These sliders are like the love child between my March Madness Buffalo chicken sliders and my inside out burgers.

These use either ground turkey or ground chicken and are stuffed with Gorgonzola cheese… a classic pairing for wing sauce, which is mixed directly into the ground meat.

Friday, January 10, 2014

G is for: Gluten Free Ricotta Gnocchi

Whewwwwww. This post has been quite the adventure.

It started out as a simple idea...

I wanted to make gnocchi. (pronounced NYO-kee)

Then I decided I wanted to make ricotta gnocchi.

Then it turned to gluten free ricotta gnocchi.

Why did I want to make it gluten free? To be honest, I have no idea. While I do cook gluten free sometimes, I don't have a gluten allergy. I don't write a specifically gluten free blog.

But boy, when I get an idea in my head, look out. It's like I just hone in on this one thing and I become obsessive about it. Like... to the point that I made my boyfriend go out in the freezing cold with me on a Friday night to get more ricotta after I messed up the first batch.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

F is for: Farrotto with Pears, Prosciutto & Sage

Helloooooo 2014!

I have a feeling this is going to be a fantastic year, so what better way to kick it off than with my latest favorite creation.

Sometimes the best dishes are the result of improvisation. I knew I wanted to make a Farrotto (sort of like risotto, except with farro), but I hadn't yet decided what kind.

Originally, my plan was to do something with butternut squash and sage, as I had recently made a lasagna for Christmas using those flavors and loved it. However, being hungover this morning and not really wanting to venture out of the house, I decided to go shopping in my refrigerator. I still had some leftover sage from the lasagna, a few pieces of prosciutto leftover from my New Year's charcuterie board, and a pear (which I forgot to add to the board). Suddenly I was in business!
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