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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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 up this dressing, of course, and shovel it into my mouth. The next option would be a spoon.
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!
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.