Friday, July 20, 2018

Gooseberry Lemon Cream Puff Pastry Tart

Gooseberries, common in every market in Germany are hard to find in NYC. So when I found these at my local farmers market, I snatched up 2 pints of the red ones, did a happy dance and immediately started arguing with myself over what to make with them. 

I was flipping through my file of German gooseberry cake recipes. I was specifically looking for an uncomplicated recipe that would showcase the gooseberries. Then I remembered this Fresh Fig Rosemary Hazelnut Tart I made a while back. I've been wanting to redesign it with other ingredients and flavors. 

I already had puff pastry in the freezer and the lemon balm is out of control in my herb garden. That's how this tart and these flavors came together. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Paradise Kraut

Paradise kraut is a wonderful, flexible side dish or condiment. Whether heaped on a hot dog at a summer barbecue or as a side dish for a holiday meal, this recipe has year-round appeal. 

This Austrian kraut recipe is as delicious as it is versatile. Onions are caramelized in lard and then simmered together with fresh shredded white cabbage and peeled diced tomatoes. 

If you are short on time, canned peeled tomatoes can be used when preparing this recipe or, alternately, instructions for easily peeling tomatoes at home are included below. 

Monday, July 16, 2018

Morello Cherry Tequila Sour

This is my second drink recipe in as many posts and I have two good reasons. The first is tomorrow is National Tequila Day. The second is I have had a gorgeous bottle of reposado tequila sitting on my shelf for months. Tequila Day is a perfect opportunity to break it out and mix up a delicious cocktail.

A few months ago I attended a Viva XXXII tequila tasting event and sampled the brand's Joven, Reposado, and Extra Anjo sipping varieties. The tequilas are well priced and delicious. We were all impressed with the brand and I vowed to make a cocktail to post here. So move over Rhubarb Mint Frosé, today's the day people.

Viva XXXII  sent me a bottle of Reposado after the event. Here's how the company describes the Reposado: 

Tasting Notes: The aromas are agave-forward with vanilla. A hint of toasted nuts lends a crisp, buttery balance with a medium finish of vanilla and floral notes that create a well-rounded, refined and delicate taste.

Completely accurate. The reposado is perfect for sipping on its own. But onto the cocktail.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Rhubarb Mint Frosé

Frosé has been the most popular girl on the block here in NYC for the past two summers. I finally caved and ordered a glass of this frozen slushy rosé a few weeks ago. Why did I wait so long?

I immediately started thinking of flavor combinations to make my own at home. Lavender and rhubarb went into the ring and rhubarb came out victorious. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

20 Fantastic Healthy & Delicious Snacking Finds at This Year's Fancy Food Show

Two weeks ago  I walked the equivalent of six football fields to cover the Fancy Food Show in NYC.  The show has a lot to cover in three days.

Bob of Bob's Red Mill
From keynote speakers representing famous companies to new product incubator showcases to sections on the floor from many countries and aisles representing individual states in the USA. 

Monday, July 9, 2018

A Cheeseburger for a Crowd

Once I made the hot dog cake, this was the inevitable next step. It's kind of weird I saw this recipe for a variation of a very American meal in a German cooking magazine but I did and here it is. A cheeseburger presented in savory cake form.

This savory cheeseburger cake has a yeasted dough crust and is filled with a ground meat-onion mixture, then layers of pickles, ketchup, mustard, and cheese.

Friday, July 6, 2018

Arugula Potato Purée Stuffed Zucchini Boats

For home gardeners, the inevitable question pops up of what to do with the onslaught of fresh zucchini every summer. I'm pre-gaming your projected zucchini abundance with this vegetarian stuffed zucchini

The recipe is a bit fussy. It does not have a ton of ingredients but has a few extra steps. The result is a unique and delicious dish packed with summer flavor. Of course, you can just throw the zucchini on the grill and call it a day. However, if you are bored with "simple" zucchini recipes. Try this one for sure. 

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Drinking Painkillers on Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands

One of my favorite places on earth is Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands. I made my first visit there in the early 90's primarily for diving but fell in love with the Island's charm topside as well as underwater. Upon every repeat visit, I fall deep under the spell of the Fat Virgin and her surrounding islands.

When in the BVIs, visiting The Baths National Park is a must. 

Traipsing through these spectacular caves, gazing at their formations while turquoise water swirls around your ankles is an experience unique to Virgin Gorda.

Monday, July 2, 2018

Savory Hot Dog Cake for July 4th

Hot dog cake. How many times have you heard those words said together? Don't hate on this recipe just yet. I admit it sounds weird but trust me,  it's delicious.

Instead of grilling or boiling hot dogs, Another way to serve these at your summer party is to bake them into a savory cake, a relish mustard flavored savory cake to be specific.  This crazy fun recipe is a good fit for any July 4th picnic table is super easy to make. It's also a fun dish to bring to a potluck barbecue. 

The batter comes together in minutes, Hot dogs are layered in a baking dish with the batter and topped with pan-fried ketchup spiked sweet onions before baking.

Friday, June 29, 2018

Rhubarb Vanilla Danube Wave Cake & Cruising the Danube with Ama Waterways

I've said it 1,000 times. I am not a cruise person. Don't get me wrong. I love being on a boat. In the last 25 years, I have vacationed on liveaboard diving boats all over the world and would jump on one right now. The difference is most of those boats carry between 12 -30 divers. But cruising on a big boat filled with nondiving strangers? Doing "touristy" things? No. Thanks. 

Never say never, right? Because two years ago, I found myself on a small cruise ship to the Dominican Republic. The lure? A socially conscious based cruise and a press trip for the unfortunately now-defunct Fathom cruises. Along with my fellow passengers, I planted trees in a rainforest, worked alongside local women in paper and chocolate making cooperatives, and taught English in a middle school and in a remote community. I loved every minute of it.