white truffle grilled cheese

One of my favorite coworkers and food-minded friends gave me an incredible gift this Christmas season and I was absolutely over the moon when I received it:  a bottle of white truffle oil.  Countless times I have watched Mario Batali finish a dish with a few shavings of these highly esteemed funghi and send whatever plate of goodness he has created completely over the top.  However, with truffles ringing in at well over $1,000/pound and being a chef with a moderate budget, I had little intention (or hope) of ever working with them myself.... until now.  As soon as I unscrewed the cap, my nose was on sensory overload with the pungency of the aroma.  I inhaled and instantly knew I was dealing with some serious sophisticated mushroom flavor.  Furthermore, I realized that just a little drop would go a very long way.  If I couldn't work with truffles themselves, this had to be the next best thing. Read more »

rosemary white bean dip

Last Saturday night, Joe and I met up with a group of our friends for dinner at Anthony David's in Hoboken, New Jersey.  Upon sitting, our server presented the table with a basket of crusty bread and a small vessel loaded with the most marvelous white bean spread.  Not only was the spread delicious, it was addicting.  We kept going back for more and unabashedly requesting a fresh replenishment course after course.  As a matter of fact, I'm pretty sure I would have been completely satisfied for the night feasting on those two things only (and of course my glass of red wine).  However, I still went on to enjoy another sensational meal of grilled octopus, Chilean sea bass, and bourbon glazed doughnuts [drooling on my keyboard right now] at one of Hoboken's finest establishments.. Read more »

baby, it’s cold outside…

'Tis the season to simmer heart healthy whole grains with traditional holiday spices and one of the most delectable winter fruits. The pomegranate:  an absolute bear to dissect; akin to performing  surgery on the flesh, skillfully separating the ruby colored arils from the pulpy membrane,  magenta juice soaring through the air.  However, no matter how many splatters and stains result, I always seem to forget the gruntwork once I bite into those tangy-sweet seeds.  Actually, it's completely inevitable as I revel in the flavor - I will end up cutting into a pom again... Read more »

brussels sprouts and pancetta

I was a very deprived child, but did not know until a couple of years ago...  My mother never, ever prepared brussels sprouts for us.  Okay, so maybe I wasn't exactly a deprived child, but I can't help feeling a little slighted that I didn't get to try my new favorite veggie until a couple of short years ago.   Read more »

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