03 4 / 2013

Chocolate fudge cookies with peanut butter chips
I made these for a housewarming recently because I hate showing up to stuff like that empty-handed. Also because arriving at a party and looking around for the snaxx and finding only booze is the worst. 
RECIPE COMING SOON PROBABLY

Chocolate fudge cookies with peanut butter chips

I made these for a housewarming recently because I hate showing up to stuff like that empty-handed. Also because arriving at a party and looking around for the snaxx and finding only booze is the worst. 

RECIPE COMING SOON PROBABLY

28 3 / 2013

Banana blueberry bread

Last Friday a bunch of us had to come into work early for a big meeting. I hadn’t baked anything for my newish coworkers yet so I thought it would be a perfect excuse to surprise everyone with breakfast. Also banana bread is very delicious at all times. I came to work with loaves of it still warm from the oven. Then the location of the meeting got changed to a much smaller edit room and I got disinvited and the important people absconded with the loaves. True story.

INGREDIENTS:
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup neutral oil
1/3 cup Greek yogurt
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1/2 cup chopped lightly toasted pecans
1/2 cup blueberries
3 very ripe bananas mashed with a fork
DIRECTIONS
Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.
Whisk together the sugar, oil, yogurt, vanilla, egg, and egg yolk in a separate bowl until you get out the lumps. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and whisk until barely combined. Fold in the pecans, bananas, and blueberries so that they are evenly distributed throughout. Grease a 9” x 5” loaf pan and dust with flour, then pour the batter in it. Bake until a toothpick tester comes out clean and the top is nice and burnished, about 70 minutes in my oven but start checking after an hour. 

I get stressed out baking loaves for people because you can’t try them to make sure they came out okay. However, if you use this recipe you do not need to stress about that. The answer is always: It came out great. 

Banana blueberry bread

Last Friday a bunch of us had to come into work early for a big meeting. I hadn’t baked anything for my newish coworkers yet so I thought it would be a perfect excuse to surprise everyone with breakfast. Also banana bread is very delicious at all times. I came to work with loaves of it still warm from the oven. Then the location of the meeting got changed to a much smaller edit room and I got disinvited and the important people absconded with the loaves. True story.

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup neutral oil

1/3 cup Greek yogurt

1 tsp vanilla

1 egg + 1 egg yolk

1/2 cup chopped lightly toasted pecans

1/2 cup blueberries

3 very ripe bananas mashed with a fork

DIRECTIONS

Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.

Whisk together the sugar, oil, yogurt, vanilla, egg, and egg yolk in a separate bowl until you get out the lumps. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and whisk until barely combined. Fold in the pecans, bananas, and blueberries so that they are evenly distributed throughout. Grease a 9” x 5” loaf pan and dust with flour, then pour the batter in it. Bake until a toothpick tester comes out clean and the top is nice and burnished, about 70 minutes in my oven but start checking after an hour. 

I get stressed out baking loaves for people because you can’t try them to make sure they came out okay. However, if you use this recipe you do not need to stress about that. The answer is always: It came out great. 

21 3 / 2013

SPRING IS COMING

Allegedly.

SPRING IS COMING


Allegedly.

19 3 / 2013

I really like meatballs on top of things that are not pasta

Meat is a vehicle for sauce, ice cream is a vehicle for candy, pasta is a vehicle for meatballs, etc

I really like meatballs on top of things that are not pasta

Meat is a vehicle for sauce, ice cream is a vehicle for candy, pasta is a vehicle for meatballs, etc

07 3 / 2013

SNAXX

Here is the way Tarik and I became friends when I was brand new to VF and didn’t know anybody: I walked into our office kitchen to get a snack and found that the refrigerator had been cleaned out and everything in it thrown away, including all the snacks I had put in there to last me the rest of the week (three Polly-O string cheeses). I LOVE string cheese so I was, to be fair, an irrational amount of upset about this, but even looking back now I get extremely mad thinking about the needless waste. Why anybody would throw away three wrapped string cheeses is beyond me. They clearly do not go bad. By the way I am 100% not exaggerating about any of this; I was actually standing in front of the empty refrigerator with my jaw dropped, fighting back feelings of panic (what to DO) when I noticed there was another human being in the kitchen with me. I had to make a game-time decision about whether to explain why I looked like someone had just killed my dog and I’m glad I did because Tarik completely got it. I believe what he said was, “Snacks are important!” and I felt very relieved and understood in an existential way and I knew we would be friends after that and we were. 
I turn 24 tomorrow and snacks are no less important to me now than they were then. Unfortunately every day this week I have either forgotten snacks or I have consumed them all at once at lunch (that was a bad day) and then been in a snackless rage by 4pm. If I am beginning to sound like a freak to you that is fine. We don’t have to be friends; I have Tarik.
EGGPLANT CHIPS
I dip these in a sauce of Greek yogurt and sriracha, stirred with a fork. Mediterranean AND Asian, you say? I call it “I am young and poor”-fusion. 
Directions:
Slice an Italian or Japanese eggplant (the smaller, seedless skinny ones) into thin coins. Arrange on a non-stick baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with your choice of spices. I like cumin, cayenne, and unhealthy amounts of salt. Roast at 400 degreees, or 425 if you like to burn the crap out of them like me, until crispy, about 20 minutes depending on the thickness of your slices. 

SNAXX

Here is the way Tarik and I became friends when I was brand new to VF and didn’t know anybody: I walked into our office kitchen to get a snack and found that the refrigerator had been cleaned out and everything in it thrown away, including all the snacks I had put in there to last me the rest of the week (three Polly-O string cheeses). I LOVE string cheese so I was, to be fair, an irrational amount of upset about this, but even looking back now I get extremely mad thinking about the needless waste. Why anybody would throw away three wrapped string cheeses is beyond me. They clearly do not go bad. By the way I am 100% not exaggerating about any of this; I was actually standing in front of the empty refrigerator with my jaw dropped, fighting back feelings of panic (what to DO) when I noticed there was another human being in the kitchen with me. I had to make a game-time decision about whether to explain why I looked like someone had just killed my dog and I’m glad I did because Tarik completely got it. I believe what he said was, “Snacks are important!” and I felt very relieved and understood in an existential way and I knew we would be friends after that and we were. 

I turn 24 tomorrow and snacks are no less important to me now than they were then. Unfortunately every day this week I have either forgotten snacks or I have consumed them all at once at lunch (that was a bad day) and then been in a snackless rage by 4pm. If I am beginning to sound like a freak to you that is fine. We don’t have to be friends; I have Tarik.

EGGPLANT CHIPS

I dip these in a sauce of Greek yogurt and sriracha, stirred with a fork. Mediterranean AND Asian, you say? I call it “I am young and poor”-fusion. 

Directions:

Slice an Italian or Japanese eggplant (the smaller, seedless skinny ones) into thin coins. Arrange on a non-stick baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with your choice of spices. I like cumin, cayenne, and unhealthy amounts of salt. Roast at 400 degreees, or 425 if you like to burn the crap out of them like me, until crispy, about 20 minutes depending on the thickness of your slices. 

26 2 / 2013

ANIMAL CRACKERS
I was making whole wheat cheddar crackers to bring to an Oscar party and things got silly

ANIMAL CRACKERS

I was making whole wheat cheddar crackers to bring to an Oscar party and things got silly

20 2 / 2013

Whole Wheat Banana Yogurt Cake with Peanut Butter-Greek Yogurt Frosting
It sounds healthy right? My poor unsuspecting dinner guests were like “Well done, you” and I was like “Well now I definitely can’t tell you that there are severely unconscionable amounts of butter in this.” Like so much butter you probably shouldn’t even look at this picture for very long.

Whole Wheat Banana Yogurt Cake with Peanut Butter-Greek Yogurt Frosting

It sounds healthy right? My poor unsuspecting dinner guests were like “Well done, you” and I was like “Well now I definitely can’t tell you that there are severely unconscionable amounts of butter in this.” Like so much butter you probably shouldn’t even look at this picture for very long.

20 2 / 2013

Shiny happy carrots
I made these for dinner a week ago and ate every last one over the course of one New Girl episode which, FYI, clocks in at a very short 21 minutes. Then I made them for a dinner party on Monday and all eight people got a serving and I was like that’s funny that serves eight people.
Caramelized maple carrots
Whisk together 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/4 cup maple syrup (yes, expensive, sorry) until combined. Toss the mixture with a 24-oz bag of baby carrots in a roasting pan and sprinkle with a little sea salt. Roast at 400 degrees, tossing occasionally, for about an hour or until they get small and really sticky. Remember when your parents used to tell you that sweet fruits and vegetables were “just like candy” and you were like “I KNOW ABOUT SANTA AND I KNOW YOU ARE LIARS” well these carrots are exactly like candy and that is very much the truth.

Shiny happy carrots

I made these for dinner a week ago and ate every last one over the course of one New Girl episode which, FYI, clocks in at a very short 21 minutes. Then I made them for a dinner party on Monday and all eight people got a serving and I was like that’s funny that serves eight people.

Caramelized maple carrots

Whisk together 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/4 cup maple syrup (yes, expensive, sorry) until combined. Toss the mixture with a 24-oz bag of baby carrots in a roasting pan and sprinkle with a little sea salt. Roast at 400 degrees, tossing occasionally, for about an hour or until they get small and really sticky. Remember when your parents used to tell you that sweet fruits and vegetables were “just like candy” and you were like “I KNOW ABOUT SANTA AND I KNOW YOU ARE LIARS” well these carrots are exactly like candy and that is very much the truth.

11 2 / 2013

TRAVELIN’

This post is dedicated to Jim Palmeri who is an executive chef in a winter wonderland


     I hadn’t had any real time off of work in… kind of a while, so when Mama Bear asked me if I wanted to accompany her to Mohonk Mountain House last week for some R&R I responded enthusiastically even by Emily standards. I had heard tales and read pamphlets and told all my friends I was going to a castle but it still took my breath away when we arrived upstate. Mohonk is exactly like a snowy Hogwarts and every single thing about it is magic. There are fireplaces in the rooms and there are people who will light yours for you before bedtime so it crackles and glows while you sleep. There are plates of cookies in corners of snuggly libraries and entire rooms dedicated to cocktails. There is an iceskating rink with a 39-foot fireplace in the middle of the woods like Narnia and a band that pops up at night—I literally found it because I heard strains of harmonica floating through the evening air—and causes young people to bop around with old people like a goddamn commercial. IMAGINE IF LIFE WERE LIKE THAT ALL THE TIME. I can’t even… I just can’t. 

     One of the best things about being at a spa with good food is that you can roll around on a yoga mat for a bit and then feel really good about eating 27 bowls of truffled mushroom bisque before dinner. “I need to refuel, I am feeling really weak” I thought to myself as I ate duck confit for lunch and then again as I ate veal with some kind of delightful pistachio situation going on at dinner. They also have an elaborate dessert table with platters of melty chocolatey things that you eat with a spoon and tiny little tarts topped with raspberries on it that is great if you want to make sure you don’t pass out from intensely ice skating later. I love dessert tables. Yes and yes and yes and yes. All of my fears about fainting from overexercising proved unnecessary THANK GOD.

     The executive chef, Jim Palmeri, probably noting that I have the enthusiasm of six Emilys for all of his handiwork, was kind enough to take me on a tour of his kitchen, which is where he introduced me to this 50-lb piece of sushi-grade tuna that I later enjoyed seared on a wonton crisp. Jim, if you’re reading this, your enormous kitchen is cleaner than mine, and mine is located in a home not Hogwarts (sad). That is ridiculous. You are a culinary delight-making wizard and I will cook for you any day and I will bust out my nicest bottle of wine. It’s Yellowtail but it’s a really nice vintage. 

28 1 / 2013

DINNER PARTIES, PART TWO: ITALIAN NIGHT

Pasta and pizza feed a crowd.

PUFF PASTRY PIZZA

 1 pckg puff pastry, thawed

marinated mozzarella balls, sliced in half

cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

fresh basil, washed and torn 

Directions:

Lay out each sheet of puff pastry on the bottom of a rimmed baking sheet and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use the oil from the mozzarella balls to brush the top of the puff pastry and then arrange cheese and tomatoes in checkered rows. Bake for about fifteen minutes or until it is golden and melty and bubbly. Scatter basil on top and serve.