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Greatist Curry Tuna Salad

19 Mar

Curry Tuna Salad

If you’ve been following my Instagram, you’d know I made curry tuna salad for lunch. While I did make it up on my own, I got the inspiration from Greatist’s article 52 Meals in 12 Minutes or Less. I am trying to make healthy and speedy lunches in an effort to eat well and get more fit, particularly because I will be heading home to Miami for Easter. I cannot wait.

Anyway, here’s the skinny on the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp. Nonfat plain Greek Yogurt [ I used Fage ]
  • 1/4 tbsp curry powder [ I modified to put slightly more curry powder to really enhance the flavor ]
  • 1 can of tuna
  • 1/8 cup red onion (diced)
  • 1/4 cup grapes (halved)
  • 1 tbsp. cilanto (chopped)

Directions:

  1. Combine 2 tbsp. nonfat plain Greek yogurt and ¼ tbsp. curry powder in a small bowl.
  2. Add tuna to the bowl and mix.
  3. Add 1/8 cup red onion (diced), ¼ cup grapes (halved), and 1 tbsp. cilantro (chopped) to the bowl and stir.
  4. Serve atop a large handful mixed greens.

What salad are you really enjoying these days?

Lavender Honey Chicken

17 Mar

Recipe Swap{via}

The French lawyer and epicure, Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin once stated, “The discovery of a new dish does more for human happiness than the discovery of a new star.” I could not agree more. When I was advised by my dear friend Ana that there was a Pen Pal Recipe Swap, I could not resist to sign up! The idea was to connect with other creatives through the exchange of recipes.

I was paired with Lauren of My Favorite F Words. Her blog regularly highlights variations of her favorite F words, including faith and family. Food, another F word, happens to be something she also enjoys. When we were paired she sent me a recipe for Lavender Honey Chicken. Knowing that the recipe was near and dear to her heart, I couldn’t wait to try it out.

Lavender Honey Chicken Ingredients

Ingredients:

  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 1 tsp. culinary lavender buds
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 Tbs. butter
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 minced clove of garlic
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • the juice of 1 lemon

Lavender Honey ChickenMethod:

  1. Rub chicken thighs with salt, pepper, and lavender buds; let sit for at least 30 minutes
  2. Melt butter with olive oil in skillet
  3. Add minced garlic and onion to skillet; cook until tender but do not brown
  4. Add chicken to skillet; brown it on all sides but do not cook all the way through
  5. Put lemon juice and honey in a small bowl; microwave for a few seconds and then stir together (the heat helps the two mix together easily)
  6. Add lemon and honey mixture to skillet
  7. Lower heat and cover the skillet to steam cook chicken all the way through
  8. After the chicken is cooked through, turn up the heat to create a caramelized glaze

Lavender Honey ChickenNotes:

  • You can use any kind of chicken just try to use thin pieces of chicken OR cut the chicken down to bite size pieces; if you don’t, the chicken will become dry.
  • I usually serve this over rice and use the excess glaze as a sauce, it is divine!
  • Yes, you can taste the lavender – and it tastes just like summer, something that Lauren and I both need in our snowy tundra homes! It’s supposed to be spring in 3 days. Let’s hope the weather reflects that!

Have you ever partaken in a pen pal recipe / food swap?

Friday Food Fun

14 Mar

All images from their respective publication.

Can you believe it’s already mid-March? I mean where is 2014 going. This week has been quite busy with work and events, but I am happy to have a relaxing weekend ahead!

Best desserts to try around the world: Boston’s Flour made the list! I have never had one of their buns — this needs to change!

My girl Diana did a post on Henry Hargreaves’s art collection food maps – all made out of real food. I love to travel and eat, so this art really spoke to me. The collection was made by Henry, a New Zealand-based artist, and his New York-based stylist friend, Caitlin Levincreated. Both travel aficionados, they wanted to show ‘how food has travelled the globe, transformed and became a part of the cultural identity of each particular place’.

Legal Crossing is now open in Downtown Boston.

Dissecting the Cookie Dough Oreo – have you tried it?

25 Tasty Snacks: I want to try the Garlic Bread “Fries” with Marinara “Ketchup”.

Chocolate Fried Chicken to be spearheaded by Umami Burger mastermind Adam Fleischman. After reading this article, I must say I’m intrigued!

What food finds have you come across this week?

Asta

13 Mar

astaRecently nominated as a James Beard semifinalist for Best New Restaurant, there has been a lot of buzz around Asta and I wanted to see what it was all about. Located at 47 Massachusetts Avenue, it was spearheaded by Alex Crabb — Ex-Sous Chef of L’Espalier– and his girlfriend Shish Parsigian. Asta stands for Alex & Shish’s Tasting Adventure. Cute, right?

THE ATMOSPHERE

I loved the ambiance of the restaurant: every nook and cranny emanated coziness. The decor was fun, the music  jiving, the people vibing and I was oh so happy with my fur trimmed seat. To start the night off right, we were welcomed with a glass of sparkling wine. Who wouldn’t enjoy that?

asta

asta

asta

THE FOOD

When it comes to food, Asta only offers a 3, 5, or 8 course tasting menu. We decided to try the 5 course menu:

asta menu

astaYou could find your cutlery by pulling out the utensil drawer within the table for use throughout the meal. What a nice touch!

asta

Amuse-Bouche

asta

Cauliflower, Trout Roe, Mushrooms, Lemon Sauce, Fried Capers

To begin, we had cauliflower. I never thought I’d like cauliflower as much as I did, yet this flavor pairing had me at first bite.

asta

Monk Fish in Bacon Broth with Brussels Sprouts and Pickled Mustard Seed.

The Monk Fish was hands down my favorite dish of the night. It was cooked to perfection and complimented well with the Brussels Sprouts and Bacon Broth.

asta

Braised Celery, Chicken skin, Black Gnocchi.

asta

Beef with Kale and Chestnut Puree.

asta

Black Cocoa Pavlova alongside Passionfruit and Olive Oil.

To end the night, we had the Black Cocoa Pavlova. This dessert was spectacular. I loved how there was a light airiness to the passionfruit that was contrasted with a cripsy pavlova texture that had a hint of chewiness.

THOUGHTS

Next time I’m back, I want to sit at the counter to the open kitchen for a more intimate experience with the team. Maybe I could even squeeze in a few questions too!

Asta is a term that is affiliated with goodbye — (H)asta la vista, baby. But, before you say goodbye to the weekend or Boston in general, make sure you do yourself a culinary solid and stop by Asta.

ASTA

47 Massachusetts Ave
Boston, MA 02115
(617) 585-9575

Asta on Urbanspoon

Portobello Road

12 Mar

Portobello Road

Recently, I have become smitten by local store boutiques. This past weekend, I ventured to Chestnut Hill to see Monuments Men at the Super Lux Cinema. Getting there slightly before the movie, I had time to look around. I was immediately drawn to the store by its beautiful blue door. Named after a famous British road, Portobello Road is a hidden gem of this shopping area. It carries goods from all over the world: England, Italy, Belgium, Holland, Spain, Germany, India, Kenya, Mexico, Brazil, Nepal, Cambodia, and Japan, as well as many things crafted in the U.S., including Boston!

Portobello Road

Portobello Road

Portobello Road

Portobello RoadMY FAVORITES

Portobello Road

D.L. & CO Candles | Lafco New York:  Feu de Bois

I could’ve spent the day there. I can’t wait to go back!

PORTOBELLO ROAD

55 Boylston Street
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
(617) 264-2020

Cake Batter Oreo Cookies

10 Mar

Cake Batter Oreo Cookies

I love me a good cookie. I have been wanting to try out something new and of course the Pinterest gods did me a solid: they pointed me to Sally’s Baking Addiction, specifically her Cake Batter Oreo Cookies. I saw chocolate chips, sprinkles, oreos, and cake on the recipe; I was SOLD!

Cake Batter Oreo Cookie Ingredients

Her recipe can be found below:

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 and 1/4 cups (160g)all-purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/4 cups (190g) yellow or vanilla boxed cake mix 
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) light brown sugar
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup (180g) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (80g) sprinkles
  • 10 Oreos, crushed into pieces 

DIRECTIONS

  1. In a large bowl, sift together flour, cake mix, and baking soda. Set aside.
  2. Using a hand mixer, cream the softened butter and both sugars together on medium speed until smooth.
  3. Cake batter oreo cookie ingredients Add the egg and mix on high until combined, about 1 minute.
  4. Eggs Add the vanilla and beat on high until combined. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix on low-medium speed until just combined.
  5. VanillaAdd the chocolate chips, sprinkles, and crushed Oreos. Mix on low until the add-ins are evenly disbursed.
  6. Cake Batter Oreo Cookies IngredientsCover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate dough for at least 2 hours, or up to 3 days. This step is mandatory. The dough is fairly sticky, so chilling the dough is required in order to avoid the cookies from spreading too much. If you chill longer than 2 hours, make sure you roll the cookie dough into balls after the 2 hour mark. Place dough balls on a plate, cover tightly, and store in the refrigerator until ready to bake.
  7. Once chilled, preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  8. Scoop rounded balls of the cold dough onto an ungreased baking sheet. Use about 2 Tablespoons of cookie dough per cookie. Shape your cookie dough balls to be “taller” than they are wide, as explained and pictured in the original recipe. Press a few chocolate chips or crushed Oreo pieces into the tops of the cookie dough balls, if desired. That makes a pretty cookie. Make sure to keep dough chilled when working in batches.
  9. Cake Batter Oreo CookiesBake the cookies for 10-12 minutes until edges are slightly browned. Mine took 10 minutes exactly. The centers will still appear very soft, but the cookies will set as they cool. You may also press a few more chips into the tops of the cookies at this point (the chips will melt down and stick from the warm cookies).
  10. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 4 minutes and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies stay fresh in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 7 days. They won’t last that long! (They didn’t — mine were gone in 2 days. YIKES!)

Have you ever tried any of Sally’s Baking Addiction’s recipes?

Boston Chops

8 Mar

Boston Chops South EndSoon after heading to Deuxave, I was invited to a Blogger dinner at Boston Chops, the youngest [just turned 1 year old] of all 3 of Chef Chris Coombs’s concepts.

THE RESTAURANT

Upon walking into Boston Chops, I felt really welcome. Everything from the dim lights to the dark wood and leather seats provided that warm feeling. In addition, I was graciously greeted by the staff. To the left, was a very inviting bar. This photo did not do it justice in its length and grandeur. Had I not come in for a dinner, I would’ve taken a seat and chatted up the bartender. This has become one of my favorite pastimes in going to new restaurants — they have such great and different insights to the restaurant scene.

The Bar at Boston ChopsBefore sitting down to eat, we were able to mix and mingle with fellow bloggers. I was lucky enough to pick Chris’s brain. I mentioned to him that as part of my life bucket list, I wanted to travel and dine around the world. I asked for some of the places he’d say I couldn’t miss and he said mentioned a few, including Alinea and Noma. They have definitely been added to my list!

THE ATMOSPHERE

As we headed to eat, one could not be less than stunned by the details and decoration Georgina of  Notes on Lifestyles by Georgina was able to incorporate to our lovely meal. I mean, it really had sparkle.

Boston Chops

Boston Chops

Boston Chops

Shelby & I at Boston ChopsI loved that we were randomly paired with bloggers to get to meet new ladies in the blogosphere; I couldn’t complain that my girl Shelby from Tutus and Tea happened to be at my table! Also at my table were Christine, Jaime, Lianna, and Lauren…such fabulous ladies!

THE FOOD

It’s embarrassing to say but my favorite part of dinner was the bread. In my instagram, I could only describe it as one thing: orgasmic. Upon taking first bite, the bread was light, airy, and oh so buttery. It was perfection.

Popover at Boston ChopsTo eat, Shelby and I shared the Flat Iron steak. I persuaded her to try the chimichurri butter; I use any opportunity, where appropriate to the palate, I can to have hints of latin flavor into my dinners. The parsley and garlic based butter was the perfect pair to the cut.

Flat Iron Steak with Chimichurri Butter at Boston Chops

It was tough to not order the Brussel Sprouts Au Canard, but Shelby convinced me to share the Braised Kale with her. Braising is a combination cooking method using both moist and dry heat. I had never had a braised vegetable. I was impressed with the outcome; it had a nice kick.

Braised Kale at Boston ChopsAnd if that wasn’t enough, the steak came with “generous frites”. The thought process behind the way the steak is served is actually quite genius: they serve you the fries after you get your meat dish and to the quantity you want. That way, the juices from the steak don’t make the fries soggy. As an added plus, they’ll come back even after you’ve finished. They really knew the way to my heart, as french fries are my favorite side.

Fries at Boston Chops

Yesterday marked the beginning of the late night specials at Boston Chops, showcasing the Boston Chops burger. I can’t wait to come back and try this late night menu. The price points are just incomparable to anything in the area.

Boston Chops

BOSTON CHOPS IN SOUTH END

1375 Washington St
Boston, MA 02118
(617) 227-5011

Website / Facebook / @BostonChops

Boston Chops on Urbanspoon