May Daring Baker’s Challenge: Fruit Strudel

May 27, 2009 at 5:59 am | Posted in Daring Bakers, Dessert | 9 Comments

The May Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Linda of make life sweeter! and Courtney of Coco Cooks. They chose Apple Strudel from the recipe book Kaffeehaus: Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest and Prague by Rick Rodgers. They also allowed us to choose whatever filling we wanted so I went seasonal and got strawberries and rhubarb! Alas- a perfect combination! The preparation of the dough was definitely my favorite part.

The filling didn’t turn out exactly how I expected it, but Ned, Laurita and Jen seemed to enjoy it so I consider that a job pretty well done. 😀 I paired it with some french vanilla ice cream and boy did this dessert go down smoooth. Check out the recipe below!
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Surprising Spoons

May 22, 2009 at 5:47 am | Posted in Brunch, Travels | 6 Comments

Last Sunday morning was a bit rainy but it was a nice enough day to head down to the JFX farmer’s market! I picked up some strawberries and asparagus and got to see my favorite foodie blog ladies, Julie, Meg and Renee. Meg suggested we check out Spoons for brunch and I was a bit hesitant- cause, come on, how can a coffee shop have a good brunch!? Well I was wrong! They have a nice and thorough menu and boy can they make a mean french toast. I was in heaven!

Week after week of joining these ladies at the farmer’s market and then brunch, I have really come to appreciate and love such charming Sunday morning companions! 😀 I am soooo going to miss this in the next several weeks of crutch land. 😕

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A Farmer’s Market Meal

May 19, 2009 at 5:41 pm | Posted in Dessert | 6 Comments

So this meal came from the first JFX farmer’s market of the season! I saw the radishes at the end of the loop and instantly remembered back to Barefoot in Paris, where Ina pairs radishes with a baguette, lots of salt, and butter! This was a delicious appetizer for our meal.  My dad always planted them in our garden when Laurita and I were little, but Laurita was the only daring one and used to chow down on them with Daddy.  So that night, I tried them for the first time and think they are definitely a bright and nutritious vegetable, but I wouldn’t say I would crave it like I do with broccoli and asparagus…

I also picked up some fresh basil and that inspired me to recreate my entree from Bicycle.   That night I had mahi-mahi with a pesto and assorted vegetables with fingerling potatoes, which were positively divine! I figured rockfish was the most interesting white fish I could find at Wegman’s and got that with some multi-colored fingerling potatoes. Well my version of the entree was not nearly as tasty as Bicycle (probably because I used less butter!) but it was a noble attempt. 😀 Check it out below!

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Kentucky Derby Mini Mint Cheesecakes

May 14, 2009 at 9:36 am | Posted in Dessert | 6 Comments

These babies were absolutely perfect for the party! I got tons of compliments and boy that sure solidifies my dream someday of doing this semi-professionally! After making the cupcake sized cheesecakes for the Daring Baker’s challenge I felt inspired to go even more mini and somehow incorporate mint into the mix!

I used the same chocolate wafers and added some peppermint extract and then added some mini chocolate chips to the cheesecake batter! The mint leaf on top brought it all together!

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Spring Eats from Alinea

May 9, 2009 at 1:52 pm | Posted in Cookbooks, Dinner, Entertainment | 4 Comments

For the Derby party Ned and I attended he wanted to go crazy and pull a recipe from his Alinea cookbook. I dutifully assisted him and it turned out great!

So this dish is titled- Yolk Drops – asparagus, meyer lemon, black pepper. What a colorful dish! And those yolk drops definitely look like corn, but they tasted like delectable egg bits. The lemon puree (underneath the bits) really tied everything together and we decided to use lemon slices as a “plate” (much more party friendly!).

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May Charm City Cookbooking

May 6, 2009 at 6:44 am | Posted in Cookbooks, Dessert, Dinner | 6 Comments

This month Renee hosted and chose Beyond the Great Wall since she is going to China in a month or so! This cookbook had an amazingly vast array of recipes, much of them that I had no idea about!

I chose to make the Uighur pastries with Dandelion Greens and boy am I glad that I did! I would say that the two batches I fried up were finished off in less than 5 minutes! 😀 So after Friday night’s feast (see the rest below!) I realized that I definitely need to incorporate soy sauce, ginger and peanut oil into my repertoire more often!

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Mexican Pancakes

May 4, 2009 at 5:20 pm | Posted in Brunch, Dinner | 7 Comments

Tuesday was a busy one at work and instead of making a chicken and rice meal, I decided to go real easy and make the Hall Family breakfast standby: Mexican Pancakes! So yes because these babies are so delicious and so easy I’m thinking I need to make breakfast for dinner more often!

So I’m thinking you might be confused as to the name of this dish- well my grandma is from Mexico and you may or may not know that many of the sweets of Mexico have a French origin- so these are basically thick and eggy crepes! And Abuelito calls them Mexican Pancakes so mexican pancakes they will be! 😀 See our family recipe below.

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Spicy Delicious Jambalaya

May 3, 2009 at 11:30 am | Posted in Cookbooks, Dinner | 4 Comments

Last week was spicy seafood week! I continued our excitingly flavored fare by making jambalaya! The recipe that I adapted from New Best Recipe was enough to feed 5 of us with leftovers for lunch. Ned and Bob, (my true and honest food critics) enjoyed it thoroughly. I will definitely be making this again!

It was truly a well spent afternoon in the kitchen (even with the bum knee!). Check out the recipe below.

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