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Essential Gear: Bamboo Scrapers for your Cast Iron Pots

If you’re a cast iron fanatic like me (and if you got here through Reddit, I know you are), you know how hard it can be to clean the baked-on bits from the bottom of the pan after searing a steak or sauteeing some vegetables. Kosher salt, oil and some sturdy cotton flour sack dish towels can go … Continue reading »

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Ingredient Spotlight: Rosemary Infused Olive Oil

Rosemary-infused olive oil is super-quick way to add great flavor to pizza dough, bread or potatoes. I used it instead of regular olive oil the last time I made Mark Bittman’s Pizza Dough (which, by the way, is a must-make), and the results were fantastic. I made the infusion in basically the same way I make garlic … Continue reading »

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At the Market: Sweet Bell Peppers

Now is by far the best time of the season (at least in Illinois) for the farmers’ markets. Among the fresh berries, tomatoes (that’s another post!) and apples are some really amazing sweet peppers. Red, green and yellow bell peppers are actually the same plant (a cultivar ofCapsicum annuum),  chosen at different stages of ripening for different … Continue reading »

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Ingredient Spotlight: Ceylon “True” Cinnamon

If you’ve been cooking and sprinkling regular grocery store-bought cinnamon on your oatmeal since you were a kid, do yourself a favor and find some “True” Ceylon cinnamon. It’s lighter in color than what most Americans are used to (which is actually Cassia, a separate bark) and has a much more subtle, mellow flavor with less “spice”. … Continue reading »

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Homemade Chicken Shawarma Platter

  Clockwise from top: tomato cucumber salad, hummus, curried grains, and chicken shawarma I first started cooking Middle Eastern food a few years ago during a few weeks when I decided to see what it would be like to go completely vegan. I ended up doing a lot of falafel sandwiches with tahini sauce and … Continue reading »

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Rotini with Tomatoes, Asparagus and Goat Cheese

In Illinois, asparagus is in season, so every farmer’s market is overflowing with fresh, purplish green stalks. I love it grilled in the summer, but was looking to mix it up tonight and use some other ingredients I had on hand. I ended up making rotini with chicken and a grilled asparagus tomato sauce finished … Continue reading »

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Salmon and Eggs

I saved some salmon we pan-seared last night for breakfast this morning to make salmon and eggs. I love salmon for breakfast (particularly the smoked kind), and it goes very well with eggs. I started by putting a bit of white truffle oil in a non-stick pan and then cracking eggs directly into the hot … Continue reading »

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Banana Oatmeal Power Cookies

I’ll admit — this one was kind of a fun experiment for me. My friend Brian was talking about some healthy cookies he made the other day that involved banana, and I figured since I’ve had a banana in the freezer for the past 2 months, I’d give the cookies a shot. I looked a … Continue reading »

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Essential Gear: Flour Sack Towels

There are some things that you buy and immediately find a thousand uses for. I first picked up a few white cotton flour sacks when I was making Mark Bittman’s [now famous] No-Knead bread. The recipe called for a “lint-free towel”, and my first attempts with a dishcloth left me with a thoroughly unusable piece of … Continue reading »

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Tabouli (or do you say Tabbouleh?)

Today’s concoction was tabouli. I didn’t set out to make it — while it’s good, it isn’t necessarily a dish that stands on it’s own or something I want to eat all week. However, it happened to fit the bill since I had on hand a bunch of parsley from my ceviche. I picked up some tomatoes … Continue reading »

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