Small Hiatus Turned Large

24 Aug

Forgive me for my prolonged absence from posting. 2012 has been a very challenging year, and food blogging has fallen off the priority list. However, I miss writing and posting so I’m hoping to begin again soon.

I hope you are all well!

-dania

Who Doesn’t Love a Good Cookie?

17 Jan

I’ve gone on a bit of a baking binge recently. As many of you know, something happened when I got pregnant with my second child, which was like flipping a switch with me and sweets. I don’t crave them, and in fact I am mostly turned off by them.

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Happy Holiday’s

12 Dec
We hope to begin food blogging again after January 1st!

Easy Lemon Salad

20 Oct

Many of you have suggested that you would like to read recipes of what I cook at home. Granted, as I’ve explained in posts before, I’m not good at the “ready in 20 minutes for dinner” kind of cooking. I’m much more about the “all day, from scratch, making grandma Toscano’s brajoile” kind of cooking.

To my surprise, that seems to interest a great many of you, so I’ve decided to begin to post some family recipes. In some cases modified slightly to not give away all our family secrets.

My first recipe is actually very simple and not at all time-consuming, unlike many of the others to follow.

Lemon Salad – serves 4

1 thinly sliced lemon

3 basil leaves

oilive oil

salt

sugar

Thinly slice the lemon, and lay slices on a plate, drizzle oil all over the slices.

Add the chopped basil, salt, and sugar to taste.

Serve! (see I told you it was easy!)

In my family we usually serve this as a side salad to whatever the main dish is, usually our famous broccoli pasta, a recipe I will be posting shortly.

The Lowry

2 Sep Lowry

I’m attempting to expand my horizons in recipes and family cooking, but I couldn’t resist adding this review.

At @LittlePod’s suggestion we came to the Lowry. The first thing I realize as someone is throwing their arms around me is I know one of the servers and he’s one of my favorite people who I don’t really know. You know, the folks you see regularly places and have conversations with, but that you don’t know their last names. So, Jack throws his arms around me and welcomes me in, which I have to say is a pretty rock star way of being greeted in a restaurant, It makes one feel special, and isn’t that what dining out is really all about?

Now, because I’ve been completely preoccupied with my other endeavor The Good Counsel for the better part of a month, I’m a little scattered, and I actually show up to the restaurant an hour before Lisa and I agreed to hang. What this means is I get extra time with my beloved Jack and he tells me all about the wonders that are the Lowry, the owners, the handcrafted sauces and the amazing old school drinks. (I still need to learn how they make a Manhattan here, as that’s my fathers drink and he’s very particular.)

Since I’m so early, I decide to make myself at home and order oysters and deviled eggs, with a mojito, of course.

After which I wait for Lisa to order a proper lunch.

I have the tostada special, which I neglected to read, was made with feta, which for me now has become a deal breaker. I’m not sure what happened since I used to love feta, but lately I can’t stand the sight of it. Everything else about it was great, but unfortunately feta has a way of tending to overpower most other things you put it with.

Lisa was in a breakfast mood and had the egg’s benedict which looked amazing and I know firsthand from my deviled eggs that the béarnaise was very good. Not Meritage good, but really, that’s almost an unattainable standard.

Overall it was a bit of a mixed bag for me. The service was great, but I’m impartial since I knew Jack from before, the appetizers were awesome, but I think I did a poor job of reading the menu and avoiding feta, which really shouldn’t be reflected on my opinion since they brought what I ordered. I think I’ll have to make another trip soon and try the ever-changing amazing desserts Jack told me about.

Kitchen in the Market

28 Jul

My new favorite place to hang out recently is Kitchen in the Market at Midtown Global Market. Kitchen in the Market is an interactive commercial kitchen space.  In addition, they offer cooking classes, host special food events and are all around an amazing place.

Owners are the beautiful and talented Molly Hermann of Taste Bud Tart and Tracy Morgan of  Segnavia Creative. Molly and Tracy make an incredible team and I love hearing all the new fun things they are coming up with every time I stop by.

Another reason Kitchen in the Market is so wonderful is that it takes a bit of the mystique out of a commercial kitchen. For people like me, that may be a bit intimidated by professional chefs and trying to throw a decent meal together KITM helps to make it more accessible.

They also have an amazing deli/refrigerated case that is always full of different yummy stuff made by the chefs who are using the space. Since the chefs who use the space are in and out the stuff in the deli case is almost always changing, but looks amazing every time I visit.

KITM also has a shop which is stocked with spices, kitchen tools and more. The website says it perfectly, “It’s a shop for cooks – inspired by chefs.”

Now, back to the classes I mentioned earlier. There are a range of classes from  Cooking the Market, where you are able to utilize the grocery stores in Midtown from Kids cooking classes for many age groups.  Plus, who doesn’t want a free karaoke cooking demo? I thought so, go book now!

Life Lessons Learned From Blogging

26 Jul

I’ve been blogging for just over half a year now, and it occurs to me how much I’ve learned in that time. Not only just about food, which has been amazing but additionally I’ve made a fabulous connection to the newly formed #MNFoodBloogers Group, who I LOVE.

Never in a million years did I think I would find such a wonderful, supportive, smart, fun group of people when I started this blog. (I’ve given a shout out to a few of them in my earlier food blogger posts.) I feel incredibly blessed to be a part of this amazing community and I enjoy learning from so many of them.

Plus, if I thought I was a foodie BEFORE, I realize now how much more I have to learn and how truly fun it is to talk to others who are passionate about food.(And I mean REALLY PASSIONATE.) I’ve also enjoyed trying new foods, like Lamb Brain from Saffron (pictured above).

I originally started this blog after taking a career assessment. This assessment indicated many things but the strongest career path that emerged was a chef. At first I laughed, because I don’t cook well under stress in my kitchen, much less trying to run a restaurant, but it got me thinking. I realized that food is a very big part of my life. I always blamed the big Italian family for making food a priority, or the fact that I’m “food motivated” but really underneath all that is a genuine passion and interest in food, the food systems, nutrition and trying new things.

Through this whole process I’ve rekindled my joy of cooking for my family as well. As I’ve mentioned I’m not very good at cooking under pressure as of yet, although, with more practice I’ve become better and better. I do however, really enjoy cooking Italian family recipes from scratch, the ones that take 4-5 hours to complete. I’m also determined to perfect my whole wheat bread recipe. I’ve made it a personal goal to begin to share recipes from my Italian family, and maybe a few from my husband’s family, if they aren’t all trade secrets.

Additionally, I’m embarking on an adventure to try to cook one new recipe a week. Because of all my talented Food Blogger peers, I have my choice of where to begin, but from reading many other foodie blogs I’ve discovered so many recipes that look easy, tasty and healthy, all of which are important to me. (I’ll be posting my adventures, which hopefully end up more successful than not.)

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