I really like using competitions as a way to spark creativity in cooking an cocktail making. Unfortunately, most cocktail competitions require that you are working at least part time at a regular bar establishment – which rather excludes me these days. What I really hate with these competitions is when they don’t announce this fact until the application process. I even went looking for the competition rules and regulations to determine if there was this kind of limitation before I started designing for the competition. But I suppose all is well that ends with a good cocktail. While many people…Continue Reading
As it has been mentioned previously, I can be very lazy in the kitchen. I really prefer to use as few dishes as possible and skip time consuming steps when there is an easier way. Usually it is not as pretty, but it is a lot easier for everyday meals. This is the perfect meal for a lazy person. It tastes wonderfully complex, but most of the cooking time you just walk away from it, and there is only one pan used! The strong player here is a creamy Dijon mustard – not sweet – but mildly spicy and lends…Continue Reading
And so we continue with the recipes from my excess of zucchini. Also considering the ridiculous temperatures in Northern California in the last few weeks, I’ve been doing a lot of salads. This zucchini and steak salad is one of my successful attempts to balance my desire for cold refreshing salads with H’s current need for a lot of protein (he is currently training for an iron man). That has meant that a lot of our meals are light salads with lots of raw fruits and vegetables topped with meat of some kind. Not particularly ingenious, but it works. This…Continue Reading
I have a nostalgic fondness for the perfect toasted marshmallow. One of the pieces we have improved the backyard with is a stone-type fireplace and we have had some nice opportunities to grill supper (particularly when it is too warm to cook inside). Most of the times we have done so, I keep forgetting to get marshmallows to toast over the embers. But not this time! I finally remembered, and though I am not a fan of s’mores, this cocktail evokes the same flavors without the solid mass getting in the way of the gooey marshmallow.
The zucchini I planted just over 2 months ago is now taking over the garden. It is producing so much I can’t use it all and pawning it off on other people barely makes a dent. So, you will be seeing a lot of zucchini recipes in the next couple months. H hasn’t started to get sick of it yet, but I think we might be approaching that point fairly soon. Too bad for him. I figured a lightly sweetened zucchini bread was a good place to start. A primary school teacher used to bring us zucchini bread all the…Continue Reading
I like making flatbreads. I won’t pretend that my flatbreads are particularly amazing in flavor or true to a particular cuisine (even though I call them pita breads), but you can go from “I want some bread” to eating homemade bread in 2 ½ hours. Less proofing time than a standard loaf, no worry about crust consistency, and now cooling time after the bread comes out of the oven. Also, there are a bunch of different ways to cook flatbreads, so you don’t have to heat up the oven if it’s 90F. I do recognize to some the flaw in…Continue Reading
When I’m cooking, often what I start out intending to make is not what ends up on the plates. I’ll get a bright idea that inspires me or decide what I really want to eat part way through the cooking process. There are times when this distraction is detrimental, and other times when the result is great. This chicken curry noodle soup turned out to be one of the tastier results. I really couldn’t think of what to cook, so I settled on an easy default of Thai chicken curry and rice. I was just going to make it a…Continue Reading
With California getting incredibly high temperatures this weekend, we definitely need some good cooling beverages. I picked up some lemongrass at the farmer’s market last week which makes a great syrup to add flavor to both cocktails and non-alcoholic refreshers. So I present to you one of each using other fresh vegetal flavors.
This is one of those recipes you are going to look at the directions for and say “Really, is that it?” to me. But sometimes you just need a quick salad that is good for multiple occasions and tastes good. Also, I had a lot of cabbage and needed to do something with it (suitable to way-to-hot weather). In fact, almost all the ingredients in this salad were grown within an hour of where I live. Not the raisins oddly enough. Bad me for not supporting local farms (in my defense there’s primarily wine grapes around where I live rather…Continue Reading
I find it is most efficient to make multiple batches of ice cream at once. You already have the ice cream maker out and have gotten the ice – and for me, my freezer can’t store that much ice, so I have to buy it and use it immediately if I want enough for ice cream. I mentioned when I posted the Grilled Apricot Ice Cream that I tend to have two ice cream recipes – one with egg white and one with egg yolks. Since I make multiple batches at a time, obviously this is then the recipe with…Continue Reading