Monday, September 1, 2014

The Month in Review - August 2014

The Month in Review - August 2014

Happy Labor Day!  It's a long weekend for most of us and the unofficial end of summer.  Here in New York, kids go back to school tomorrow, weekend beach house shares are over and we're starting to think about fall.  We've actually been having a little mini heat wave for the last few days but I know it won't be long now before I start pulling out the jackets and sweaters.  I may have...um...already bought a new pair of Aldo boots because...Aldo! And boots!  OK, I'm guilty, I love fall.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Soft and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Soft and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

What do you do when you like thick, crunchy, crumbly cookies but someone you care about likes soft, thin, chewy ones?  Well, OK, I guess you could make both.  But I think this time we'll just make him what he wants.  Of course, that's not necessarily easy since what he wants is basically a homemade Entenmann's chocolate chip cookie.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Goat Cheese Mousse with Blueberry Compote

Goat Cheese Mousse with Blueberry Compote

Name a cheese and I'm likely to tell you that it's one of my favorites.  In fact, except for a couple of the extra stinky ones, I've rarely met a cheese I didn't love.  Nevertheless, there are a few that make more frequent appearances around here than others and goat cheese is definitely one.  I love the slight tang it has and it's such a great addition to the many salads I make.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Portable Cherry Crumb Pie Jars

Portable Cherry Crumb Pie Jars

Today you can read my article on Hoosier Homemade where I discuss the very serious problem of crumb theft.  Yes, the rampant crime spree that occurs in my kitchen whenever I've baked a crumb topped dessert has left me desperate to find a solution.  And since it does seem to be all about the filling and the crumb topping, I've solved the problem by eliminating the pie crust altogether and just handing everybody their own personal crumb filled dessert jars.

Head on over to Hoosier Homemade to see the recipe!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Chicken Milanese Topped with Crunchy Salad

Chicken Milanese Topped with Crunchy Salad

When I have a great meal in a restaurant, I usually try to recreate it at home.  I don't usually wait four years to share it with you, though.  Then again, we waited practically a lifetime in between visits to this amazing place so I'll have to chalk both things up to 'life got in the way' and not try too hard to figure it out.  The restaurant in question was the Union Square Cafe, practically a New York institution and a temple to farmer's market freshness.  The vibe is casual, though expensive, and the food is fresh, simple and perfect.  Exactly like this dish.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Chicken Meatballs in Creamy Tarragon Sauce

Chicken Meatballs in Creamy Tarragon Sauce

What's for dinner?  You know that dreaded question, right?  Day after day after day.  So I'm here today with another option.  I can whip up a batch of meatballs very quickly so it's a frequent go-to meal whenever I have any ground meat.  But that just means it can get a little boring.  A fun sauce, though, makes all the difference.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Savory Tomato Cobbler with Gorgonzola Biscuits

Savory Tomato Cobbler with Gorgonzola Biscuits

We've been going a little tomato crazy around here this summer.  I realize that sounds normal to most of you but...um...I used to hate tomatoes.  Yes.  Hate.  And I know you're thinking that I probably still ate things like ketchup and tomato pasta sauce but you'd be wrong.  Hate is hate.  Happily, tastes can change.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The Month in Review - July 2014

The Month in Review - July 2014

I hope you all have been enjoying summer because I certainly have.  It's been a remarkably mild July by New York standards with very few days over 90 degrees.  Typically, July is the hotter and stickier of the summer months so we seem to have gotten through it with very little reason to complain.  August is when the city really slows down, temperatures are lovely and people schedule vacations and beach time.  I'm planning to savor every moment of it.  Speaking of savoring, July was a delicious month in the Hungry Couple household with several ridiculously good new recipes.  So, before we get back to the business of delighting in the weather, let's take a look back at the good eats and drinks of July.  Enjoy!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Salted Caramel Peanut Pie

Salted Caramel Peanut Pie

Happy Grab Some Nuts Day!  No, I'm no kidding and I'm not nuts.  Well...um...not completely.  Anyway, yes this is an actual holiday, people.  Nuts are good and healthy and delicious and we're celebrating them.  By now you should know that my fellow food bloggers and I can't resist these wacky holidays and had to come up with nutty recipes to honor the occasion.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Blueberry Ricotta Cream Cheesecake

Blueberry Ricotta Cream Cheesecake

I've had a life-long love affair with cheesecake but, until very recently, I didn't know there was a National Cheesecake Day.  Even better is that it falls just 3 short days after my birthday.  It's like they know me!  I knew I'd be celebrating today with a huge group of my fellow bloggers but I went ahead and made the cake over the weekend so that it could be my birthday treat.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Fig Salad with Bacon, Blue Cheese and Honeyed Walnuts

Fig Salad with Bacon, Blue Cheese and Honeyed Walnuts

Fresh figs must be one of the prettiest fruits around and I can't quite resist them when I see them.  Sometimes that happens, though, when I have no actual plan for how to use them.  So I just drizzle them with a little honey, crumble on some sharp cheese and munch away as a snack.  But taking that a step further and creating an amazing salad is so worth it.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Heirloom Tomato and Gorgonzola Tart

Heirloom Tomato and Gorgonzola Tart

Most Saturday mornings in summer, you'll find me at our local farmer's market.  Yes, Manhattan has farmer's markets and quite a few, in fact.  The big, amazing, awesome, I wish I lived across the street one is at Union Square.  Four times a week, farmers, growers, bread bakers and cheese makers drive down from the Hudson River Valley to set up their stalls.  While I used to have the pleasure of working only two blocks away, it's quite a treck from my upper east side apartment.  Fortunately, there's a smaller version of the market just a few blocks from home.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Kiwi Banana Smoothie and My New Kiwi Love

Kiwi Banana Smoothie

It's no secret that I love summer fruit and I always have a nice selection on hand.  But I have to admit that the little kiwifruit is not usually one of them.  Oh, I like the taste and always enjoy them when they're served to me on a fruit platter somewhere, but the idea of peeling those furry skins just doesn't appeal to me.  So, did you know that you can just scoop out the flesh without peeling them?  Neither did I.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Blueberry Pie with Lemon and Thyme


Today I have the pleasure of kicking off my first article for Hoosier Homemade.  I was in a serious mood for pie and couldn't pass up some beautiful ripe blueberries.  But I also decided to borrow from one of my favorite quick breads and add cornmeal and lemon zest and thyme.  And goat cheese.  Yes, goat cheese and blueberries are a happy couple.  The result was definitely a winner and one that I'll be making again and again.


Head on over to Hoosier Homemade to see the recipe!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Greek Burger with Tzatziki Sauce

Greek Burger with Tzatziki Sauce

Summer brings out my burger craving in a big way!  Sure, there's that whole outdoor grilling thing but, actually, I love mine made in burning hot cast iron pan in my own kitchen.  However they're made, though, I've been wanting them non-stop.  As it happens, my friend, Kita, from Girl Carnivore is hosting a burger month - 31 days, 31 burger recipes by 31 amazing bloggers.  And there are cool giveaways, too, so be sure to enter the raffle at the bottom of this post.

Monday, July 14, 2014

No Churn Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream #IceCreamforOXO

No Churn Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

Cold ice cream, hot summer day - you don't need convincing, right?  So only two questions remain.  What flavor and do we make it or buy it?  I'm guessing that, those of you with ice cream makers, choose to make it while those who don't (that would be me) opt to purchase.  What's that you say?  You can make ice cream without a machine?  Thanks, I think I will!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Creamy Roasted Heirloom Tomato Dressing

Creamy Roasted Heirloom Tomato Dressing

If you've recently noticed fewer salad greens in your local market, it may very well be my fault.  The way I've been buying massive quantities of all sorts of lettuces could have contributed to a nationwide shortage.  What's my sudden passion for romaine and butterhead?  To scoop us this dressing, of course, and shovel it into my mouth.  The next option would be a spoon.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Apple Tarte Tatin

Apple Tarte Tatin

Today my fellow holiday food bloggers group members and I are celebrating the upcoming Bastille Day.  So what is that, exactly, other than an excuse to eat French food?  In short, it's the French National Day that commemorates the beginning of the French Revolution with the Storming of the Bastille on July 14th 1790.  And we're all about helping the French celebrate this occasion.  Here in New York there are actually quite a few celebrations and fairs on Bastille Day so...bring on the French food!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Gelato Crunch Cake

Gelato Crunch Cake

With the July 4th holiday weekend coming up and plenty of summer outdoor entertaining in general, I've been thinking a lot about what desserts to serve.  After a meal of grilled meat and starchy sides there's not usually much room left for a heavy cake.  And the hot weather begs for something cool.  So I find myself scooping out dishes of ice cream but wanting to somehow make it more special.

Monday, June 30, 2014

The Month in Review - June 2014

The Month in Review - June 2014

Excuse me but where did June go?  I mean, didn't it just get here yesterday?  I'm sure that each of the bitterly cold winter months lasted at least 8 or 9 weeks so I'm sorry to see how quickly the first of the summer months disappeared.  But, the lovely outdoor weather hasn't gone to waste and I'm taking every opportunity to be outside.  OK, I spend some time in my kitchen and then go outside.  And that has resulted in some pretty amazing new recipes.  Before we head back outside, though, let's take a look back at the good eats and drinks of June.  Enjoy!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Fruity Iced Tea Lemonade

This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Lipton, but all my opinions are my own. #bemoretea #pmedia  http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV

Fruity Iced Tea Lemonade

When I think of cooling, refreshing summer drinks I think of iced tea and lemonade.  OK, I also think of frozen daiquiris but we'll discuss that another time.  Rum aside, there are usually beverage pitchers in my refrigerator, in various stages of steeping and cooling, so that I can have my favorite drinks handy.  As for the Keurig brewer, I've never paid it much attention since I'm not the coffee drinker in this house.  That is, until I recently discovered that Lipton makes K-Cups of iced tea for the Keurig.  Um...what?

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Yogurt Fig Cake

Yogurt Fig Cake

This treat actually came about through circumstance and accident.  Over the weekend I met an old friend for brunch and stopped into a large gourmet market near the restaurant on my way home.  I'd already noticed that the local fruit vendors had figs for sale but they were too soft and wilted.  This market, however, had firm and perfectly ripe figs for sale and I couldn't resist buying them.  But now that I had them, I wasn't sure what to do with them.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Chocolate and Peanut Butter Whoopie Pies

Chocolate and Peanut Butter Whoopie Pies

I don't know if whoopie pies are normally associated with summer but they definitely are for me.  I've heard they're a southern treat but Maine stakes a big claim to them as well.  And it was in Maine that I first fell for these goodies.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Frozen Banana Berry "Cake"

Frozen Banana Berry Cake

It's very nearly summer.  It's hot.  Ice cream recipes are everywhere.  But for every rich creamy version out there, I've been seeing ones for 1 ingredient banana ice cream, 2 ingredient banana soft serve, etc.  They're basically frozen bananas with or without a touch of vanilla, blitzed in the food processor until the texture is similar to soft ice cream.  I had to try it.  And I always have bananas in my freezer.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Crunchy Quinoa Salad with Tahini Vinaigrette

Crunchy Quinoa Salad with Tahini Vinaigrette

With summer just a week away, I've been making a list of healthy and filling salads I can make ahead on weekends and keep in the fridge for easy lunches all week long.  Not just plain old lettuce type salads, though.  I needed something heartier that would hold up over a few days and be satisfying.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Mexican Tortilla Pie

Mexican Tortilla Pie

I'm constantly thinking about the daily question of what's for dinner.  It's a meal that requires more planning than the cereal I pour into a bowl at breakfast and the salad I usually toss at lunch.  I have to make sure I have all the ingredients for whatever I'm going to make and that I've left enough time to prep and cook.  Otherwise, I sometimes get too hungry and just throw the ingredients back in the fridge while I eye the cereal box again.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Crispy Baked Onion Rings (aka Cooking Actress Onion Rings)

Crispy Baked Onion Rings

Last month, when some of my fellow food bloggers and I participated in Brunch Week, we had the good fortune to work with a number of terrific foods sponsors and sample their products.  So, while it might not sound all that exciting to get a bag of Vidalia onions in the mail, to foodies like us, it kind of is.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Cherry Cheesecake Chocolate Truffles

Cherry Cheesecake Chocolate Truffles

Every vacation town we've ever visited has had at least one great candy shop.  It's always crazy busy (at least in summer) and there's a huge selection of lollipops, jelly beans and every kind of chocolate bonbon.  But the ones I want...um...OK, let's be clear that I really want everything, but the ones I buy are big chocolate covered marshmallows and chocolate truffles with creamy centers.  I had no idea how to recreate the truffles at home but I figured I could make the chocolate covered marshmallows.  Big fail.  And after a couple of sad attempts I gave up.

Monday, June 2, 2014

The Month in Review - May 2014

The Month in Review - May 2014


Is May over already?  Boy, they go by fast or, at least, the warm months do.  Cold months just go on and on.  We celebrated Cinco de Mayo and Mother's Day with a group of us honoring our mothers with favorite recipes and stories.  We held a 'brunch week' with some cool giveaways and we unofficially kicked off summer on Memorial Day.  Seems we packed quite a lot into such a quick month.  But before we see how much we can cram into June, let's take a look back at some seriously good eats and drinks.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Kasha Varnishkes (Farfalle Pasta with Buckwheat)

Kasha Varnishkes (Faralle Pasta with Buckwheat)

Those of you who didn't grow up in a Jewish household with this delectable treat are probably wondering what on earth we're about to varnish.  Varnishkes is so funny sounding but is actually the Yiddish word for noodles.  Kasha, of course, is the English word for kasha or, if you like, roasted buckwheat kernels.  So, yes, we're varnishing the buckwheat and it's delicious!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Day Recipe Ideas

Memorial Day Recipes

Happy Memorial Day!  Whether you'll be participating in patriotic celebrations or just lying on a beach or lawn chair, I hope you have a great day filled with good company and delicious food.  After such a long brutal winter, the unofficial start of summer is a very happy occasion.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Yellow Summer Squash Casserole

Yellow Summer Squash Casserole

I love almost all squash.  Pumpkin and butternut and always on my shopping list in the fall and winter.  And they get replaced with zucchini and yellow squash in spring and summer.  Though not as sweet as their fall cousins, their flavor is mild and easy to incorporate into lots of dishes.  But I also love them enough to want to make them the star sometimes.

Yellow Summer Squash Casserole
The tricky part about working with these warm weather relations is that they have a high water content.  I've tried my hand at baking them into gratins and casseroles before and was disappointed with the wet texture.  But then I realized that I wasn't giving them enough of a binder.  Normally I leave the breadcrumbs on top for a crunchy coating but this time, half went into the casserole itself as a binder.  Happily, that did the trick and the result was a wonderful vegetable side dish that held it's own on the plate.  As for the flavor - what's not to like about adding in sauteed onions and melted cheese?  Enjoy!








Ingredients
2 Yellow squash/yellow zucchini, peeled and sliced
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Onion, peeled and diced
2 Cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 Egg
1/2 Cup panko breadcrumbs
1/2 Cup milk
1 Cup shredded cheddar cheese (Gruyere would work nicely, too)
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Salt & pepper to taste

Yellow Summer Squash Casserole
Add the olive oil and onions to a large skillet and saute on medium heat for a few minutes until the onions have softened.  Add the garlic and cook for another minute.  Stir in the squash and continue cooking for about 5 to 7 minutes until the squash has softened slightly.  It doesn't need to be cooked all the way through.  Season to taste and allow to cool slightly.

In a bowl, combine the bread crumbs and shredded cheese.  In a separate bowl, beat together the egg and milk and mix in half the crumb/cheese mixture.  Add the cooked squash and onion to the egg mixture and transfer to a casserole dish.  Top with the remaining crumb/cheese mixture and pour on the melted butter.  Bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven for 20 - 30 minutes or until the top is a light golden brown.  Makes approximately 4 servings.