Monday, March 29, 2010


Ina Garten's Rack of Lamb


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 racks of lamb, "frenched" (see note)


In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade, process the salt, rosemary, and garlic until they're as finely minced as possible. Add the mustard and balsamic vinegar and process for 1 minute. Place the lamb in a roasting or sheet pan with the ribs curving down, and coat the tops with the mustard mixture. Allow to stand for 1 hour at room temperature.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
Roast the lamb for exactly 20 minutes for rare or 25 minutes for medium-rare. Remove from the oven and cover with aluminum foil. Allow to sit for 15 minutes, then cut into individual ribs and serve.
Note: "Frenching" refers to scraping the meat off the tips of the bones. Ask your butcher to leave 1/8 inch of fat on the meat.

Monday, March 22, 2010


I love brunch, in fact I would probably argue that it is my favorite meal. There is something so decadent about it, maybe it's just that I enjoy an excuse to have champagne before cocktail hour?  I've always enjoyed the routine of Sundays, a routine that when left up to me includes new york times crosswords,  movies at Angelica Theater with Alex, and of course brunch. When I lived in New York I was spoiled. The city that never sleeps understands the importance of of Sundays, a day of rest, a day to relax and garner your strength for the upcoming hectic week that was sure to be waiting. Not only did the city appreciate this tradition, but my friends did as well. Whether I was off to Brooklyn to have brunch with Susannah, Michael, and Ariel at Egg or in my own neighborhood to dine with my roommate Varun at Veselka or Taj at Freeman's Alley, I always enjoyed visiting, eating, and taking a break to spend time with friends. Since I've moved from New York I miss those Brunches. One friend in particular shared my special passion for brunch, and we together would dash about New York looking for new places to find culinary delights. Leslie and I have been to many many brunches together and when I go back to visit it is still one of the things I most look forward to. While we've had many a good meal at Prune, Max and Cafe Orlin my favorite brunches are always at Public. You know you have found a good restaurant when every single thing on the menu sounds good and deciding what to get is tantamount to picking a college course of study. While I've loved everything I've ever tried it is their coconut pancakes with fresh ricotta, mango salad and ginger-lime syrup that keeps me coming back time and again. Seriously, could there be a more delicious combination? I've scoured the web looking for their recipe but nothing is quite the same. These coconut pancakes from Smitten Kitchen come pretty close, I just top mine with store bought Ricotta and chopped up mangoes. The ginger lime syrup it pretty much impossible to recreate, but a close approximation can be reached from taking the juice of one lime (and grating the peel if you desire a stronger flavor), adding it to finely minced fresh ginger, and 2 tablespoons of honey. I am found of sweet syrups so you can add or subtract the honey as you see fit. Hope you enjoy!(p.s. the last picture of Public is mine, but I found the other pictures on there website)

Look for shredded coconut where each thread is thin and at least 1/2-inch long. Not dusty or fleck-like. If you make the batter the night before, the batter will thicken up quite a bit. Give it a stir, but don't worry about it beyond that. Drop little scoops onto the griddle - they will flatten out when they come into contact with the heat. They go from golden to burnt in a flash, so stay attentive. I prefer to use whole wheat pastry flour for this recipe but you can substitute whatever you have on hand - all-purpose flour, or regular pastry flour. Lemon zest might be a great addition, as would ginger, and/or toasted, chopped macadamia nuts.
1 14-ounce can of coconut milk
2 tablespoons honey (or agave nectar)
1 /4 cup whole wheat pastry flour (or all-purpose or regular pastry flour)
3 cups unsweetened dried shredded coconut
scant 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 large eggs. whisked in a medium bowl
1/4 cup natural cane sugar or brown sugar
In a small saucepan heat the coconut milk and honey, bring barely to a simmer.
In a separate large bowl combine the flour, coconut, salt and baking powder. Stir the coconut milk into the flour mixture.
Whisk about 1/3 cup of the coconut mixture into the eggs. Now quickly mix the eggs back into the large bowl of coconut batter. Stir until well combined. You can do this the night before if you like.
Heat your favorite non-stick (or very well-seasoned) skillet, pan, or griddle to medium-hot and brush it with a bit of butter. Test for the right temperature. If a drop of water dropped onto the pan starts to dance, you are in the ballpark. Drop a heaping tablespoon into the skillet, sprinkle the top with a bit of brown sugar. Wait until the pancake bottom is deep golden in color, then flip with a spatula and cook the other side until golden and cooked through. Repeat with the remaining batter.
Makes dozens of silver dollar sized pancakes, or a dozen or so larger ones.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Some days are just horrible; yesterday was one of those days. My professor (mistakenly) told us we ONLY had three weeks before finals, and I think he shaved a year off my life. I burned my arm on the oven making cookies. I spilled red Gatorade on my favorite cream sweater, and tore my toenail off when I tripped and bruised my knee. My boyfriend and I got in a fight about heath care, and I had an enormous project to finish before Noon today. Around 2am the stress and general unease forced me into a mess of tears and sobs on my kitchen floor... Determined to make today better, I decided to share some things that make me happy. 

nights at the beach with Martin, 

the fish tacos at Poes, 

hanging out with my family, 

ice cream sundaes,

champagne with friends, 

New York City at night, 

Old Book Stores, 

and my grandmothers meringue heath bar tort (recipe below) what makes you guys happy? 

Heath Bar Tort 

Ingredients: 6 egg whites, 2 tsp. vanilla, 1/2 tsp. cream of tartar, Pinch salt, 2 1/2 c. sugar, 1 pt. whipping cream or lg. 16 oz. Cool Whip, 6 (3/4 oz. size) Heath candy bars, crushed

Directions: Beat egg whites, vanilla, cream of tartar and dash of salt to soft peaks; add 2 cups of sugar. Beat until very stiff. Draw 2 circles approximately 8-9 inch in diameter on brown grocery bags. Place papers on cookie sheet. Spread meringue evenly within circles. Bake for 1 hour at 275. Then turn heat off and leave meringue in oven without opening oven door for at least two hours. Whip cream, adding dash of salt and 1/2 cup of sugar. Reserve 1 tablespoon of crushed candy; fold remaining candy into whipped cream and spread 1/2 of mixture on one meringue circle, place 2nd meringue on top and spread remaining mixture on top and sprinkle reserved candy on top and refrigerate for 8 hours.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Monday, March 8, 2010


Thursday, March 4, 2010


Picture found here