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Fresh Pasta Salad yo

Friday, September 28, 2012

fresh pasta salad – eat yo’ greens & the Summit Wine & Food Festival

  • 2 cups whole wheat elbow pasta – Ezekiel has an awesome new kind
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas (about 1/2 can)
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh broccoli
  • 1 cup loosely-packed spinach leaves
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion
  • 3 small garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • Chia seeds
  • salt and pepper

It’s been a few meals, so let’s catch up. This past weekend I had the mighty fine pleasure to photograph The Summit Wine & Food Festival over in New Jersey! What a blast, and besides the scrumptious food, everyone was a real pleasure to meet.

The Grand Summit - Excited!

Sommelier Showdown Luncheon

The entire Saturday event celebrated wine and food in every detail, and I loved soaking it all up. My first favorite experience was the Sommelier Showdown: three high-profile sommeliers competed in their knowledge about wines, guessing and pairing to everyone’s delight. Not a wine buff here, but I enjoyed playing with flavors from the wine with the food.

My favorite dish was the smoked swordfish with shaved fennel and pea shoots, hands down.

Sommelier Showdown, Chef Peter Turso, Ursino

The smoky slabs were thinly cut like lox, so they melted on the tongue. Then the fresh fennel cut through the fat with its fresh anise flavor, contrasting but complementing. Never thought of it before, but I can’t wait to try this concept out at home: pairing smoked fish with fresh fennel.

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CHALLAH

Monday, September 17, 2012

Honey Raisin Challah (whole wheat) — Happy Rosh Hashanah!

  • 2 1/4 lukewarm water — barely barely warm
  • 1 packet of rapid rise yeast
  • 1/2 cup + 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil — or vegetable oil
  • 1 egg + 3 yolks
  • 1/2 Tbsp salt
  • 4 cups white whole wheat flour — good fiber
  • 1/2 cup black raisins

Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year, and it definitely feels like a new start of late. I’m making more of a conscious effort to deepen relationships, fine-tune my passion, and consistently eat better. I mean I started taking my vitamins again, that has to signify something, haha.

So this weekend I was thrilled to visit Atlantic City with my boyfriend’s family to congratulate members who did the triathlon. What a feat. We admired their healthy endurance, then hit the pool and casinos. My kind of exercise, apparently.

It was great to enjoy a change of pace — my guy and I stopped by Red Bank on the way, by chance. Fun outing. Pictured below is a calamari tempura salad, with miso ginger dressing. It was about 2 1/2 feet deep, and I couldn’t pause my fork through the whole thing!

mm tasty

And Atlantic City itself was pretty interesting. Besides laughing with his family, my favorite part was strolling the boardwalk with my sweetie. Don’t get too mushy, we took each other down in go-kart racing. I mean, my competitive nature might not mention that someone beat the other horribly within 25 seconds…but it was all fun.

boardwalk

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Star-Spangled Goodness

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

fourth of july star-spangled shortcake – got a lot to be thankful for

    Serves 10-12 friends & family

  • 4 cups whole wheat baking flour (nutrients minus thick texture)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup + 2 Tbsp raw honey
  • 2 tablespoons homemade baking powder**
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 12 Tbsp cold vegan butter, cut into pieces
  • 3 1/2 cups + 3 tablespoons full fat greek yogurt
  • 2 pints blueberries
  • 2 pints strawberries/li>
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • **As in the sweet Southern Cooking handbook, homemade aluminum-free baking powder is 1 tsp baking soda & 2 tsps cream of tartar, combined

The grand Fourth of July. Dang. I know we have a lot of things to fix in our country, but at the end of the day, I’m so grateful to be an American. I hope all dear readers, no matter where you hail from, take some time to reflect on the pride and joy you have for your own country throughout the holiday.

Along the notes of gratefulness, my boyfriend and I recently had our first anniversary. He surprised me with a trip up to northern Massachusetts, in a crazy little town called North Adams. I say crazy, because we found the best accommodations we could dream of, and the most peculiar (read: awesome) contemporary museum. Besides reading in rocking chairs, walking and whispering together through art installations, and puzzling over board games – my favorite part was strawberry picking at a sweet lil’ farm on the drive up there.

my strawberry-picker

beautiful

Your first foot out the car, and the sweet smell knocks you back to the dirt. We picked up an empty pint from the nice family who runs the farm, and pressed through the garden path up to the open field. It was beautiful. An experience I would love by myself, but made even better in my boyfriend’s company.

hey there

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chai-spiced banana bread — vegan, too

Friday, June 8, 2012

chai-spiced vegan banana bread with cinnamon crumble — movin’ in

  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar + 2 Tablespoons
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsps ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp finely ground Chai tea
  • 2 brown bananas
  • 1 cup canned coconut milk
  • 2 tsps apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • •••
  • Optional
  • 1½ cups semisweet chocolate chips (dairy-free)

I officially moved in! The bodega guy knows me, and I have a routine down for commuting. (Honestly, one of the best perks is that now there’s ALWAYS a guaranteed spot to sit on Man-bound L Train!) When I get back from work, slough off my shoes, and nestle in at the kitchen table, it feels good. Like home.

super-ripe bananas

love a messy counter

It seems kind of silly, but I always associate those Norman Rockwell-visions of home with freshly baked goods. Chocolate chip cookes, berry muffins — and you already guessed, banana bread. Makes the kitchen all warm, and definitely brings people together. Even when it’s 2am and you and your roommate should really be in REM sleep already.

So I highly recommend this deliciously moist dessert for a lil’ homeyness. Besides enjoying the spices and dense flavors, it’s impossible to badly screw up. (There are a few tips to make it your optimal recipe, but honestly — it’s failsafe.)

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