Monthly Archives: May 2013

I’m An Everygirl…And I Went To Culinary School {Feature}

Photos from The Everygirl

Photos from The Everygirl

I was recently featured on one of my favorite websites, The Everygirl. I wrote about my experience going to culinary school, and I’m so proud to share my story on such a fantastic platform. Below is an excerpt from my feature, but visit The Everygirl for the full piece, and tons of other great articles.

Cooking is my favorite way to bring friends and family together. It’s been a part of my life since the days when I needed the help of my dad and a chair to reach the kitchen sink. Early lessons on weekend mornings turned into full weekends built around cooking. When my parents divorced, I spent most weekends solo with my dad, and cooking became our common denominator. Those weekends filled with grocery shopping, pouring over cookbooks, and countless delicious and involved meals laid the foundation for my love of cooking. For me, there’s no better place than the kitchen and nothing more enjoyable than gathering everyone at the table to try something delicious. That’s why I started cooking, and why I’ve chosen to build my life around it.

After studying history and art history at Hamilton College, with a brief stint traveling and studying at Stockholm University in Sweden, I decided to pursue my culinary dreams and attend the French Culinary Institute in NYC. Talk about a leap of faith! The people I met there and the experiences I had, both in and out of the kitchen, only solidified my passion for cooking (and eating!). Culinary school was a fantastic experience that I wouldn’t trade for the world; but it didn’t come without its own set of obstacles and challenges.

Read the full post, and check out so many other fantastic article, on The Everygirl. 

Fizzy & Fresh Grapefruit Palomitas

Grapefruit Palomitas

With the warmer days and longer, lighter evenings, we’re all craving lighter, brighter cocktails. This Grapefruit Palomita fits the bill. Inspired by a cocktail I recently had at April Bloomfield’s new NYC restaurant Salvation Taco, this drink pops with fresh grapefruit flavor and plenty of refreshing fizz. Make it for your next dinner party, or enjoy it on a warm lazy afternoon.

Serves Five.

Ingredients

  • 5 shots vanilla vodka of your choice (or infuse your own, its easy!)
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed ruby red grapefruit juice
  • 1 cup ginger ale or ginger soda
  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • splash of vanilla extract
  • lime slices and ice to serve

Directions

  • First, make your vanilla sugar to rim the glasses. On a shallow plate, mix the sugar with just enough vanilla extract to make it sandy (it won’t take much!)
  • Use a lime wedge to wet the rim of each glass, and dip them into the vanilla sugar to leave a nice, thin coating on the rim of the glasses.
  • Put a few ice cubes in each glass, and add the vanilla vodka. Top off with the grapefruit juice and the ginger soda, distributed evenly between all the glasses.
  • Give each glass a gentle stir, and top with a thin round slice of lime. Enjoy!
Grapefruit Palomitas

Grapefruit Palomitas

 

{Devil Gourmet FoodStyle} Kimchi

Photo Credit: http://milkimchi.foodoro.com/

Photo Credit: http://milkimchi.foodoro.com/

What Is It?

Kimchi, the condiment ubiquitous in Korean cooking, has made its way into cuisines as disparate as Southern BBQ and Mexican. Distinguished by its vinegary, chili and garlic laden bite, kimchi is a fermented food, and possesses that signature sour flavor you’d expect from yogurt or sauerkraut. Kimchi offers the ideal counterpoint for any dish with rich flavors in need of balancing. It provides the necessary vinegary, garlicky, spicy kick to keep fatty, rich flavors in check.

Where To Eat It

Recently, I ate kimchi on a BBQ pulled pork slider sandwich at Smorgasburg. The tangy kimchi perfectly balanced the rich, saucy pork, striking the necessary flavor contrast. Crunchy, bright, and spicy, it served as the perfect counterpoint. I also recently dined on kimchi at April Bloomfield’s new restaurant, Salvation Taco. Bloomfield (of The Spotted Pig and The Breslin fame) pairs kimchi with thick strips of fatty pork belly- a match made in heaven. If you need to get your kimchi fix on the run, the Kimchi Taco Truck fits the bill. They serve a whole mess of Korean fusion tacos, most of which come topped with a healthy scoop of homemade kimchi. The Krispy Fish Taco, served with a sweet potato flour batter, chipotle aioli, mango salsa, and kimchi slaw is the standout item in my book.

Why Should I Eat It?

Kimchi is a veritable powerhouse of nutrients. It packs a potent punch of vitamins A, B, C, iron, carotene, fiber, calcium, and a whole slew of healthy bacteria. That bacteria aids digestion and boosts immunity, and might even hinder cancer growth. So, you should definitely be eating this stuff!

How Should I Eat It?

Straight out of the jar, or with one of the accompaniments below, though the list is endless, so get creative!

  • Mix kimchi with butter and roll into a compound butter; slice and serve over steak.
  • Mixed into fried rice or a stir fry.
  • On top of a hotdog or burger (salmon burgers pair especially well).
  • On a pulled pork sandwich.
  • Served alongside a fried egg and some bacon.
  • Wrapped into a burrito or inside a cheese quesadilla.
  • Sandwiched into a grilled cheese.
  • Mixed in with grits for a Southern/Korean twist on shrimp and grits.

For the full post, including a quick kimchi recipe you can make at home and tips on where to buy it, visit Devil Gourmet. 

Homemade Dumplings

DSC_0032With the weather getting warmer, these dumplings are the perfect easy dinner when you’ve got people over. You can take your ingredients outside and make up a bunch of dumplings while you drink some wine and relax. It’s a great way to get everyone involved in cooking dinner, regardless of their level of culinary skill. They’re pretty foolproof, and if you buy the pre-made wrappers, all you have to do is pick your filling and you’re good to go. I made a vegetable filling and a shrimp filling, but you can mix it up and use whatever sounds good to you and your date.

Here are some filling ideas to get you started: (I suggest using a food processor, but if you don’t have one, you can just chop up everything as finely as you can, or shred the veggies on a box grater).

  • Vegetable: In a food processor, shred cabbage, mushrooms, carrots, scallions, and a clove of garlic. Mix with a little soy sauce, sriracha, sesame oil, whatever.
  • Shrimp: In a food processor, blitz the shrimp with some scallions and garlic to combine.
  • Quinoa: In a bowl, combine the quinoa, some tofu, minced scallions and garlic, and soy sauce until everything holds together.

Serve these dumplings with a quick pickle cucumber and a few dipping sauces, and you’ve got a perfect hands on and delicious dinner.

Note: You can usually find the dumpling wrappers pre-made in a refrigerator section of your supermarket, usually by the tofu and health foods. They come in round and square shapes, both equally good for dumplings, and if you’ve got extras, you can use them to make a lightning quick ravioli dish the next day.

Ingredients:

  • 1 package pre-made dumpling wrappers
  • 6 oz. cooked shrimp (tails removed)
  • 2 scallions (white and green parts)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1⁄4 cup vegetable oil

Directions:

  • In a food processor, blitz together the shrimp, scallions, garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil, and black pepper until combined but not pulverized (3 or 4 pulses). Alternatively, you can chop everything up finely and combine with a spoon.
  • On a clean dry surface, lay out a few dumpling wrappers and put roughly a heaping teaspoon of filling in the center of each one. Dip your fingers into a bowl of water and trace over the edges of one dumpling, then immediately bring the edges together to seal it. Try to press out the excess air around the filling, which might cause them dumplings to explode when you cook them. Keep going until all your dumplings are completed.
  • You can cook your dumplings several ways. If you’ve got a steamer, use that (they’ll only take a few minutes). You can bake them in an oven at 350 until softened and warmed through. Or you can pan-fry them in vegetable oil for a minute or two on each side over medium heat. Keep them in the oven set to 200 until you’ve cooked them all and are ready to eat.

Serve these dumplings with whatever dipping sauces you like:

  • Spicy Soy Sauce: Mix soy sauce with some sriracha and whisk to combine.
  • Miso Sesame Sauce: Whisk together a tablespoon of miso paste, a few drops of sesame oil, a bit of soy sauce and some rice wine vinegar.
  • Sweet Mirin Sauce: Whisk together 2 tablespoons mirin (sweet Japanese cooking wine), 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar, and a little sriracha
I can't take credit for that nice manicure- that's my friend Adrienne working away.

I can’t take credit for that nice manicure- that’s my friend Adrienne working away.

View the full post on Bachelor Kitchen.