Archive | October, 2010

Mini Apple Pie

28 Oct

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Shrimp Cakes over Wilted Spinach and Tomato Salad

27 Oct

 

 

Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Meatballs

26 Oct

 

Smoked Mozzarella Caprese Bites with Cherry Tomatoes and Spinach

26 Oct

Cheers!

So Seductive

25 Oct

I’ll take you to the bread shop, let you taste these Parker House rolls!

http://www.saveur.com/article/Kitchen/tom-colicchio-parker-house-rolls-bread

French Onion Soup

24 Oct

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why Don’t We Have Sushi Like This in America?

23 Oct

From Janelle Meyer’s Blog in Beijing, China:

http://janellemeyer.com/2010/10/23/sushi-surprises/

Check out her other posts as well she has some really cool and interesting stuff about Beijing’s culture, their norms, and daily life!

Cheers!

Porterhouse Steak with Balsamic Mushrooms and Onions and Oven-Roasted Potatoes

22 Oct

The porterhouse is a fantastic steak for many different reasons. The bone running through it keeps the steak moist and juicy, their are two different cuts of meat so you can experience different richness and textures, and when you get a quality cut of meat the flavor is outstanding with a touch of salt and fresh cracked pepper. I have taken some of my favorite classic steakhouse sides and added a twist, first the mushrooms and onions are kicked up with a wonderful balsamic glaze that adds a real bold and tangy flavor to the sweetness of the onions and the very lively natural flavor of the crimini’s. The oven roasted potatoes are an updated version of the classic baked potato, blasted with some fresh parsley and lemon zest these will make you forget all about the boring old baked potato! A great man meal that is a notch above the old boring meat and potatoes.

Cracked Pepper and Thyme Ciabatta

22 Oct

I love fresh baked bread, there is just something about pulling it out of the oven and having that delicious fresh baked bread smell fill your house! The outside is crunchy, the inside is warm and fluffy, it is a genuine treat. My girlfriend and I are obsessed with ciabatta bread and this recipe has some outstanding flavors that make this bread so good you can eat it all by itself! The olive oil adds a rich aroma, the pepper provides for a nice strong bite, and the thyme is fresh and herbaceous!

Heres what you need:

3 cups flour

1 packet dry active yeast

1 cup room temp water

olive oil

salt

cracked black pepper

fresh thyme

Heres what you do:

1. In a large mixing bowl sift flour and add a pinch of salt. Mix it all together. Dig out a small hole in the flour and pour in the yeast and water. Mix water and yeast gently with your finger and leave for 5-10 minutes, until yeast forms bubbles.

2. After bubbles have formed add handful of chopped thyme, cracked pepper, and 4 tbls olive oil. Mix ingredients together with hand to form a nice ball of dough. It should be firm and not sticky.

3. Transfer dough to floured surface and knead for 10 minutes. Push your palms into the dough, fold and turn. Repeat this process until dough is pliable. Transfer to a lightly floured bowl cover with a damp towel and let it rest for 1 hour. Dough should double in size.

 

4. Remove dough to floured surface and give it a light knead to expel all the air. Form it into a nice 1 in high loaf and transfer to an lightly oiled and floured oven tray. Cover with damp cloth and let rest 1 hour, dough should double in size.

5. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F. Dust top of bread with flour and bake for roughly 30 minutes, until bread has slightly browned. Pull from oven and enjoy your nice and toasty fresh baked Ciabatta.

For a nice flavor dip in olive oil and balsamic with some cracked pepper. I also love a little butter spread on mine, it melts the moment it hits the bread!

 

Cheers!

 

Garlic Herb and Parmesan Crostini

20 Oct

Great little crostini you can garnish over soups, salad, pasta, or dips. A nice crunchy crostini that is exploding with a fresh herby cheesy flavor! The thyme provides a very natural aromatic flavor that perfectly compliments the parsley and the rich garlic flavor that explodes in your mouth! You can make this with a variety of different herbs and seasonings that cater to your particular dish and taste.

What ya need:
French baguette, or similar

fresh parsley

fresh thyme

1 clove garlic

fresh parmesan

2 1/2 tbls butter

1 tbls extra virgin

sea salt

crack black pepper, coarse

Heres what ya do:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

2. Slice the baguette on an angle and lay out on a baking sheet.

3. Chop the parsley and thyme and mince the garlic, mix with the butter and oil and sea salt + coarse fresh cracked black.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Spread on top each slice of baguette. Sprinkle each with fresh grated parmesan.

5. Bake until parmesan is melted and the crostini are a nice golden brown.

 

Cheers!

 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

20 Oct

These are some of the most delicious cookies I’ve ever had. I am lucky enough to have an amazing girlfriend who bakes them for me and even gives me the recipe to throw on the blog. These cookies are gooey, rich, sweet, and crunchy. We use organic sugar, chunky natural peanut butter, organic chocolate chips, a touch of oats, vanilla, and a dash of cinnamon to really bring all the flavors together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black Mussels in White Wine Tomato Sauce with Fresh Baked French Bread

19 Oct

This dish takes me right back to my childhood on the east coast. Growing up in Connecticut so close to the beach we only had the freshest seafood and one of my favorites were Mussels in a tomato Broth with some nice crusty bread to sop it all up! My fish monger had some super fresh black mussels he got in this morning and he hooked it up for Sammy G’s Kitchen!

 

Heres what ya need:

2 lbs fresh wild Black Mussels

1 1/2 cups white wine (Chardonnay)

5 large tomatoes, diced

French Bread

4 cloves garlic

5 shallots

italian parsley

thyme

butter

olive oil

saffron

S+P

Heres what you do:

1. Clean mussels under cool running water. Scrub algae/ barnacles off with a strong billed brush or small knife. Be sure to remove the beard with knife as well. Discard any with broken shells or any that are open.

2. Melt 2 tbls butter and 2 tbls extra virgin olive oil in large pot over medium heat. Add shallots and saute 3 minutes. Add garlic and saute another 3, or until shallots are transparent.

3. Add diced tomatoes and white wine, I recommend Chardonnay because it is smooth and buttery, bring to a boil and season with half of your chopped thyme and parsley, s+p and a dash of saffron. Add muscles and give it a gentle stir.

 

4. Cover pot and cook muscles 8-10 minutes until shells have opened, discard any that do not open after 10 minutes. Be careful not to overcook because the muscles will begin to get tough.

5. Add chopped parsley and thyme and give it a stir.

6. Scoop into serving bowls and garnish with parsley and slice fresh baked French Bread.

Bon Appetit!

Cheers!

Mint Mojito

18 Oct

A delicious and refreshing drink that will make any night feel like summer. Its fresh, citrusy, and vibrant and definatlely one of my favorites.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Tonight’s Menu: Mediterranean Chicken Breast with Lemon Asparagus and Israeli Cous Cous Salad

18 Oct

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Herb Crusted Chicken over Lentils with Red Wine Cream Sauce

17 Oct

A flavorful herby organic chicken breast over some beautiful lentils with onions and celery. The whole dish is tied together with a delicious robust Red Wine Cream Sauce made with some leftover cooking liquid, red wine, parsley and cream.

Sirloin Burger with Red Wine Glazed Onions and Mushrooms, Sharp Cheddar, and Horseradish Mustard on a Pretzel Roll

16 Oct

When ever I get a food craving, like a deep craving for something meaty, cheesy, and juicy, it is almost always a cheeseburger. And while there are many great places in the Los Angeles area to get the burger monkey off your back I prefer a custom homemade burger.

Nothing like a nice, juicy, meaty half pound sirloin burger with all the works. Put that baby on a salty crisp pretzel roll and it is out of this world!

Heres what ya need:

1/2 lb ground sirloin

pretzel roll from your local bakery

1 red onion

1/4 lb baby bella mushrooms

sharp cheddar

horseradish

mustard

red wine

butter

olive oil s+p

Heres what you do:

1. Season meat with a good amount of sea salt and fresh cracked pepper. Form into patty and set in fridge.

2. Slice onions and mushrooms into 1/8″ slices. Heat 2 tbls butter in medium skillet of med-low heat. Sweat onions and mushrooms in pan until they begin to caramelize, 20 minutes. Crank heat up high and add about 3/4 cup red wine into pan and deglaze. Season with s+p and cook remaining wine off. Set aside.

3. Heat small amount of oil in a med-high pan. Season each side of burger patty with sea salt. Once pan is hot lay your burger in gently and allow a nice crust to form. DO NOT press down on the patty and DO NOT move it around. After about 4-5 minutes, flip the burger and cook another 4 or until desired doneness (this will get you a nice well medium temp). Remove it from the pan and immediately top it with your onions and shrooms and a healthy helping of sharp cheddar, allow to rest.

4. In a small dish mix about 1 tblsp prepared horseradish and 1/4 cup brown mustard. Slice pretzel roll and apply horseradish mustard to both sides of the bun.

5. Place patty on bun and serve with Oven Baked Fries.

Cheers!

San Francisco

15 Oct

Industrial, historic, bohemia. San Francisco is just as free, liberated, and revolutionary as the young flower children that danced and popped LSD like popcorn in it’s parks forty years ago. An economically and industrially advanced city that maintains the same attitude as its local inhabitants since the early 50’s.

While San Fran is advancing rapidly like the other major cities in America it has perpetuated its free spirited attitude and has not succumbed to the self-indulgent behaviors like the other yuppy conservative parts of America. San Francisco is constantly doing the things they want and believe are right despite the opinions and thoughts of the rest of the country.

Our trip was off to a good start despite missing our first departing flight from Phoenix – but we made it on another one an hour later and landed safely in San Francisco. We boarded the shuttle to to our hotel and were pleased to find we were the only two riding. We cozied up in the back seat and enjoyed a nice scenic tour of some of San Francisco’s roads less traveled. Forty-five minutes later we arrive feeling re-energized at our hotel. The Hotel Vertigo was fantastic it felt like walking into a chic San Francisco cocktail lounge! Newly renovated and with a modern decor that slightly contradicts the hotels history. It was a popular hotel as far back as the 40’s and was even used in the filming of Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo (hence the hotels new name). The hotel was staff was very helpful in getting us checked in and settled into our room.

We got our unpacked and freshened up but our long journey had us feeling hungry. We strolled downstairs and told the concierge we were looking for something in the asian realm. She gave us a few suggestion but ultimately  pointed us in the direction of her favorite Thai spot, Bang San. We feasted on spicy calamari salad and a deliciously fresh Pad Thai.By this time night was beginning to creep in and we decided to take a nice stroll south to Union Station. We watched the various street performers, local crazies, and photo snapping tourists (which I admit we did engage in slightly, just slightly). We gazed in the windows of high end shops and galleries, enjoying the cool San Francisco air and lively atmosphere. We managed to find our way back to our room and relaxed with a bottle of wine as we un-wound from our long day of travels.

The next day we left on foot to explore some of San Francisco. We started by walking through Japantown and then up into Pacific Heights. My girlfriend is a huge fan of Full House and our first stop was to see the house where they filmed it. Easy to spot once we hit the street we stopped and took a few pictures and enjoyed some old childhood memories of sitting in front of the TV watching Full House. Having had only a cup of strong coffee from the cool cafe next to our hotel; Macha Cafe, a very Zen-like cafe that specializes in teas but also serves up strong cups of Joe with locally roasted beans, we were getting hungry and made our way toward a spot that I had heard was known for their magnificent brunches.

The hunger in my stomach grew strong, the hills seemed to get steeper, and the humidity in the air seemed to skyrocket, but I am told this is quite common for San Fran residents. We finally arrived at Ella’s Restaurant only to find it was no longer brunch! Oh no! Quite all right Ella’s serves up fabulous food no matter what meal it is. The waitress was very friendly and talked me

into a glass of their specially brewed ice teas, I believe the flavor that day was an orange currant, delightful. She started us with a basket of freshly cooked artisanal breads served with a house whipped butter, scrumptious. For our main course I ordered the open flame grilled burger that was cooked to perfection and accompanied by a home-made molasses bun and all the fresh locally grown fixins! My girlfriend has the Cobb Salad that was just as equally fresh and delicious. We sat and rested our legs for awhile and enjoyed some nice conversation.

After we fueled our bellies and rested our feet we continued on to the legendary Broadway and Lyon intersection that offers fabulous views of the ocean, piers, and gorgeous flowing San Francisco streets. It is also the entrance to Golden Gate Park and we enjoyed a cool and peaceful stroll along some heavily wooded nature trails.

We strolled down the old town staircase past the morning joggers and took notice of some of the beautiful local artwork and flower garden. An array of painted hearts surrounded by visually striking display of fresh pungent flowers pays homage to the love and acceptance of the city.

 

Making our way down Union Street we stop for a moment in a local coffee shop, Union Street Coffee Roastery, they roast their own coffee beans daily and pump out one piping strong cup of San Francisco Joe! We sat outside for a moment and enjoyed some local people watching and hot coffee. With my caffeine levels regenerated we headed up Fillmore Street so my girlfriend could enjoy some high end shopping at the local boutiques that line Fillmore. After being dragged through various fitting rooms and small shops filled with over-priced pieces of fabric and string we headed toward Lafayette Park for some sight-seeing and photo-taking. We sat in the park and was directed by a local to check out a very interesting tour of the Haas Lilienthal House. A historic Victorian style home that was built in the 1880’s. It is the only home in that area with such a history. It was passed down through the family since its acquisition over a hundred years ago by wealthy merchants. The house has kept all its antique furniture, fixtures, and artwork and was truly an amazing experience and journey back through time.

Back to the hotel to rest up for the third day of this epic, jam-packed, four-day adventure.

Food Politics: Gourmet.com

15 Oct

I came across this really interesting article. It talks about carbon footprints, which is the amount of greenhouse gasses emitted by or person or in this case groups. Groups like livestock companies who statistically emit more greenhouse gasses every year than the whole transportation industry. So what do they do? They are working on a system that would require companies to print their carbon footprint on the packaging like nutritional information.

Could work. Could not work.

Look at the amount of obesity in our society, people obviously dont care what or how they eat and those lazy people do not care about what is put into the environment either. But hey, it’s a start. the first step is awareness right?

This article has a few very good and informative tips about choosing quality ingredients that are free from pesticides and and high cost processing and packaging. Free Range Revolution!

Food Politics: Gourmet.com.