Wednesday, September 10, 2014

It's 90 in September....let's make chili!

Even though I can tell that New York fall is slowly creeping in, there's still some days in early September that are ridiculous hot and hot and spicy chili is just what I needed to cure these post-summer blues. No matter what way you look at it, chili is always going to be comforting, whether it's in the snowiest part of winter, or on a hot summer day at a BBQ, chili just makes you feel good. Hopefully this recipe will put you at ease, and cure all workday blues!

(makes 6-8 servings)

1 package ground turkey
5-6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large Spanish onion
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp. canola oil
2 tbsp. chili powder
2 tbsp. oregano
2 tbsp. cumin
a few dashes tabasco
1/4 cup orange juice
28 oz. canned diced tomatoes
14 oz. can tomato sauce
1 can corn
1 can black beans

1. In a large pot or dutch oven, heat oil and cook onions until slightly translucent and fragrant, about 8 minutes. Add chopped garlic and cook another minute.

2. Add ground turkey and cook in pot, breaking up the turkey into pieces with your spoon as you cook. Add salt and pepper to taste.

3. Add all spices and both the diced tomatoes and the tomato sauce, and stir until well mixed. Bring this mixture to a boil, and once boiling, reduce heat to low and cover pot, then simmer for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the liquid is reduced about 75%.

4. After approximately 45 minutes, drain cans of corn and black beans, and add to pot, stirring to mix. Cook for an additional 10-15 minutes. Serve with sliced avocado and/or shredded cheese. 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Flank Steak with Mediterranean-Inspired Orzo

When working the night shift, it can be hard to balance sleep, your work schedule, and your personal life, especially on the end of the seasons' beautiful sunny days, which makes you feel the need to be up and enjoying the day rather than sleeping a rational amount of hours. This recipe is perfect for days like these because it's fast, easy, healthy, and most of the leg-work can be done ahead of time. The other great thing about steak, is that it can be marinated ahead of time, and then taken out of the fridge and brought to room temperature before you're ready to cook, giving you ample time to prepare the rest of the ingredients. 

Flank Steak with Mediterranean-Inspired Orzo
(makes two servings)

10 oz. flank steak
2 tbsp. aged balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp. olive oil
2 pinches sea salt
cracked pepper
3 cloves chopped garlic
4 oz. orzo pasta
1 tbsp. butter
1/2 white onion, chopped
1/2 cup grape tomatoes (sliced in half)
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/8 cut feta cheese
1/8 cup slivered almonds (optional, but I had these lying around)

1. Marinate flank steak with balsamic, olive oil, chopped garlic, and salt and pepper for approx. 2 hours

2. Boil water, and cook orzo approx. 8-10 minutes, or until al dente. Simultaneously, heat a pan with butter, and cook onions and grape tomatoes until fragrant. When the orzo is done, rinse with cool water, drain, and set aside. 

3. Make sure the pan you cook your steak in is HOT - place your hand over the pan - is it radiating heat? Perfect! Depending on the thickness of your steak, sear flank steak for approx. 4-6 minutes on each side - this should give you a perfect medium rare steak. Remove the steak from heat, and let sit for approx. 5 minutes - it should cook an additional 5 degrees in this time, so you'll have to adjust the cooking times depending on your preferred level of doneness. 

4. Add cooked orzo to onion/tomato mixture, and mix well. If you want to gild the lily, add an additional pat of butter to the orzo mixture. 

5. Add dried cranberries, slivered almonds (if you use them) and feta cheese to the orzo. Slice steak in slivers against the grain, and place on top of orzo, and enjoy! 

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Brown Butter Nutella Stuffed Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

It's been a looonggg time since my last post, and in the last year so much has changed. Since my last post, I graduated from law school, successfully passed the New York bar exam and was admitted to the New York state bar, started my new job as an Assistant District Attorney, and became the luckiest aunt to the cutest little boy that ever existed. Living in New York means that I can go to a different dessert place or restaurant, every single night, and never run out of options for new hidden gems...but the downside is, inspiration doesn't strike because you're so focused on what the city has to offer, you rarely have time to whip something up in the kitchen. 

Now that I've moved into a nicer, albeit tinnier kitchen-ed, apartment on Houston (ahem..."SoHo") I became inspired by Irene's post about Nutella cookies. So I combined the B e s t Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe ever with bits and pieces of Nutella and the result was so fantastic (yet a tiny bit burned via the new tiny oven), my co-workers were salivating when they saw the first photograph. Enjoy!

2 cups minus 2 tbsp. cake flour
1 2/3 cups bread flour
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. coarse salt
1/2 tbsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups light brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tbsp. granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
1 jar Nutella
sea salt for baking

1. heat butter in a shallow pan on medium/high heat until the butter melts, and starts to butter/foam and become brown. once butter foams swirl and cook until evenly browned. the butter will smell sweet and chestnutty, but be careful not to burn! remove from heat and cool. 

2. combine flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a bowl, and whisk until combined. 

3. combine cooled brown butter with sugar and mix well until light and fluffy. mix in vanilla and eggs and mix well. slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. add the chocolate chips and mix until combined. chill in fridge wrapped in plastic for approx. 24-36 hours.

4. preheat oven to 350 degrees. line a baking sheet with parchment paper or use a silicone baking mat. roll roughly golf ball size rounds together, and then flatten into a disk, pulling up the sides to create a little bowl. take you chilled Nutella dollops and insert into middle of cookie, and wrap the dough around it and roll back into a ball. now repeat!

5. bake roughly 14-15 minutes, turning the sheet around halfway through, until cookies are golden brown on top yet still smushy in the middle. best enjoyed directly out of the oven but still amazing two days later!

Secret Tip #1: scoop the Nutella onto wax paper and make little dollops, then freeze for roughly one'll help when stuffing the cookies. 

Secret Tip #2: the best chocolate chip cookie dough is a result of room temperature ingredients because they mix easier, and chilled dough! chill in the fridge for at least 24 hours...the hardest part is waiting. 

Secret Tip #3: i always beat the eggs very well in a larger bowl, and then add them to the other ingredients. it sounds simple and counterintuitive but it keeps the mess down and mixes so much better.  

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Birthday Bliss

Previously, I had said that April is the greatest month, and I was right. Now that law school is (almost) officially over, I realize that I have so much to be thankful for: a great education, an amazing job opportunity, and fabulous friends and loved ones. I also wanted to thank everyone who reads this blog, and supports everything I do. Because of that, I've been lucky enough to be mentioned here by Endless Simmer for my Midori Caviar post. Last night was the greatest birthday I've had in a long time, and I'm so glad I got to share it with my favorite people :)