June 29, 2009

Inspired: Thai Basil Chicken

dinner: thai basil chicken

Inspired by Chez Pim’s post on Pad Krapow Moo, I made a version Gai Pad Krapow (Thai Basil Chicken) tonight over brown rice with a fried egg.

I just followed her steps, but used ground chicken instead of pork. SOOOO yummy. This is the whole reason why I am growing Thai Basil!

June 29, 2009

Tuna & White Bean Salad

tuna salad

While cleaning up a corner of my craft room the other night, I found a lil recipe snippet from Sunset magazine for a very nice tuna salad. This salad is what started my lil love affair with tuna & white beans. You can see how I adapted it here.

mixing it up!

Just looking at the picture in the magazine of the crisp, brilliant bright green celery slices made me WANT that soo bad for lunch today. So I did it. And here it is. It’s really easy and what you see below is “my” version of their recipe.

Tuna & White Bean Salad

(adapted from Sunset Magazine)
-1 can tuna in olive oil
-2 ribs celery sliced thinly
-1 can white cannellini beans (drained)
-1 tablespoon flat leaf parsley chopped
-1 big glug olive oil
-1/4 red onion chopped
-a splash of red wine vinegar
-juice from half a lemon
-salt & pepper to taste

Drain the tuna- put in bowl with all the rest of the ingredients. MIX MIX MIX. Add on top of grilled bread and you have yourself a nice lil bruschetta!

Sometimes I add a little bit of toasted walnuts for extra crunch. I have also been know to just eat it directly from the bowl…..

June 23, 2009

Babyback Ribs with Espresso BBQ Sauce

I finally made ribs!

RIBS- It’s what I made for father’s day this year. I guess all I would have to say is– THERE WERE NONE LEFT. I think that’s a pretty good sign that they were effing delicious-don’t you?

Well they were! Case closed.

Not only will I make them again and again, I have decided that it’s stupid for me to ever to buy BBQ sauce. This espresso BBQ sauce was fantastic! I was a bit skeptical because it was soooo tangy before I smothered the ribs in them. But the second they hit the grill, those bad boys turned into the stickiest tastiest caramelized mess. I was proud. I conquered. I showed those ribs who was BOSS. I think I made my husband & my dad proud too- which is the whole reason I love cooking.

father's day dinner

I paired them with some fresh corn & my mom made a really good brown rice & green bean salad with an Asian dressing. Booya! How summer is that?


Babyback Ribs with Espresso Barbecue Sauce

(recipe from Michael Chiarello)

For the Ribs:
-2 racks baby back ribs (about 4 to 6 ribs per person)
-Grey salt
-Freshly ground black pepper
-Espresso Sauce, recipe follows

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Cut each rack of ribs in half along the bone so they can be easily stacked. Lay them out on the parchment paper in which they were wrapped for easy cleanup.

2. Salt and pepper liberally on both sides and pat spices into the meat. Make sure to over season the ribs, because part of the rub will inevitably come off in the pan. On a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil, stack the ribs close together, about 3 layers high. Place in the oven for 2 hours, shifting the bottom layer of ribs to the top every 30 minutes until they are tender and almost falling off the bone.

3. One half hour before serving, transfer ribs to a preheated grill (if using coals, make sure they have burnt down to an ember). Brush ribs with Espresso Sauce and close grill. Continue to turn and brush the ribs with sauce every 10 minutes, about 3 more times.

Espresso Barbecue Sauce:

-4 tablespoons mashed and minced garlic
-4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
-1 cup cider vinegar
-1/2 cup soy sauce
-2 cups ketchup
-2 cups honey
-Grey salt
-2 demitasse cups espresso (or about 1/2 cup of strong coffee or instant espresso)

Fresh ground black pepper

Mash garlic with the side of a knife and then mince finely to release oils.

Add olive oil to a preheated saute pan. Add the garlic and saute until it gets light brown, about 1 minute. Add cider vinegar, soy sauce, ketchup, and honey and stir well. Add a pinch of grey salt, then whisk in the coffee. Add freshly ground black pepper, to taste. Bring to a simmer and simmer for 10 minutes.

Let cool and store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Yield: about 5 to 6 cups (which means I have leftovers!!!!)

June 21, 2009

Pavolovas with Fresh Mixed Berries & Kiwis

Because I’m such a tease…let me show you the dessert I made tonight for Father’s day…..


Pavlovas with mixed berries, kiwis & whipped cream-topped with a raspberry sauce= NOM.

decided to add some green to the mix

Recipe for Raspberry sauce comes from Ina Garten- click here
My mom brought it over. What a treat!!

I made the meringues Saturday afternoon! I’ve recently started liking them- and now that I’ve made these I am smitten.

How the heck can something soo simple be soo dang good?


i hope this works.

I was surprised they worked out! I was a bit terrified that I hadn’t whipped them to the stiff peaks stage. But I guess it worked out! The recipe said to bake them for an hour and a half-but I ended up only needing 40 mins. So make sure you check to see if they are dry to the touch and set! Make sure they don’t brown!

They absolutely SCRUMPTIOUS…..Pillowy clouds of light sweetness. The berries are perfect and the kiwi I added made the tang factor PERFECT. How I wished I made more than 1 for each of us….

digging in!

Mixed Berry Pavlovas

(adapted from Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook)
makes 6

meringue part:
-2 egg whites
-3/4 cup granulated sugar
-1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
-confectioners sugar for dusting

creamy topping:
-2 cups assorted berries (I used blueberries, strawberries & raspberries–with kiwis too!)
-1/2 pint whipping cream
-1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
-2 teaspoons granulated sugar


1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper & set aside. In the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer set over a pan of simmering water, combine egg whites, sugar, and salt. Whisk constantly until sugar has dissolved and egg mixture is warm to the touch. This should take about 2-3 mins. Attach the bowl to the mixer and with the whisk attachment, beat on a medium high setting until you have stiff peaks. This should take between 4-8 mins. Beat in vanilla.

2. Using a large spoon, scoop six fluffy mounds of meringue onto the parchment paper. The mounds should be about 3 1/2 inches in diameter. Using the back of the spoon, form a well in the center of each mound, being careful not to make the center too thin.

3. Dust mounds with confectioner’s sugar. Bake until just dry to the touch but still white in color. They say it takes about an hour and a 1/2–but check half way through! Transfer sheet to a wire rack and let meringes cool completely before easing them off the parchment.

4. Make whipping cream- beat cream with 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar and add a 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract at the very end. Make sure it’s light & fluffy.

5. Spoon a dollop of the whipped cream on top of the meringues, then top with the mixed berries. I added a bit of the raspberry sauce my mom brought over. Holy yum.


June 21, 2009

checking in

Cooper and I took a lil peak at the veggie garden this morning-while Dada slept in. (Happy Father’s Day!!!)
Can’t believe how much the basil has grown since I took the inception pic!


It is absolutely amazing

love that shine

to see such growth


in such a short period


of time!!

holy shiz! my basil is GROWIING

I hope Cooper loves veggie gardening as much as I do!

Cuz- DAMN! I can’t think of anything better for us to share together. (well–cooking & baking-but that’s expected)

June 15, 2009

Carrot, Orange & Radish Salad

slicing frenzy

Big PROPS to Gabrielle who steered me in the right direction! Tonight, I made this radish salad that she recommended. Two words—OH BOY.

sir mix a lot

Let me start by saying that this salad is BOLD. The citrus kick and the mint!!! Oh lord! It totally cleanses the pallette. In a good way of course…. It’s absolutely refreshing. The flavors are soo interesting- they all go so well together. It’s seriously like a party in your mouth. I decided to grilled some chicken and spoon some on top! I also think it would also be fabulous in a sandwich with grilled steak…or maybe with some grilled fish?

tonight's dinner

MMMM tasty.

sooo refreshing

Carrot, Orange & Radish Salad

(Recipe by Tyler Florence)

-4 carrots
-6 radishes (or 4-inch piece daikon radish)
-1 handful fresh mint leaves
-1 handful fresh cilantro leaves
-2 navel oranges
-1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
-1/2 teaspoon sugar
-1/2 lemon, juiced
-1 teaspoon orange flower water
-Kosher salt


Slice carrots and radishes as thinly as possible and add to a large bowl. Add mint and cilantro. Remove the peel and pith from the oranges. Working over a bowl to catch the juice, cut between the membranes to remove the orange segments; add them to the carrots. Squeeze the membrane to extract the rest of the juice and add the cinnamon, sugar, lemon juice, orange flower water, and salt, to taste. Mix to dissolve sugar and salt. Pour over the carrot mixture and gently toss to coat. The salad can be served immediately but allowing it to sit for 1 or 2 hours will help the flavors to blend. Just before serving, taste and adjust seasoning.

June 15, 2009

radish recipes?

just pulled these lil bebes out of the dirt.

first crop of radishes!

hello prettie things!

anyone have any radish recipes? we usually eat them raw around here. Would love to see what else I could do with them……