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Mascarpone & Smoked Salmon Crostini

Posted on Apr 9, 2014 | 24 comments

Mascarpone & Smoked Salmon Crostini

I just finished watching Wolf of Wall Street and must say it was amazing. Although the movie  was quite lengthy and took us two nights to watch, it was worth every moment. I am now even more upset with the Academy Awards. Leonardo DiCaprio was incredible in it. How does he not have an Oscar yet?!

The movie was responsible for the lack of dinner. I wanted to make something quick and easy so that we can finish watching it and these crostini did just that. I’m making them again on Sunday for a dinner party we’re hosting, except they’ll actually make appetizers as they should be.

Mascarpone & Smoked Salmon Crostini

My love for smoked salmon goes back, way back. It is an item you’ll find in our fridge on a regular basis. This is my favorite way of having it. Mascarpone is a lighter less savory version of cream cheese and it works magic on this crostini. The clean, airy taste of it doesn’t overpower the salmon, instead it lets the flavors to be fully savored.

Doesn’t it make for a beautiful dish?

Mascarpone & Smoked Salmon Crostini

Mascarpone & Smoked Salmon Crostini

What is your favorite crostini recipe?

Kathy Sig 2

5.0 from 1 reviews
Mascarpone & Smoked Salmon Crostini
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 2 slices of good quality crusty bread (not the prepackaged kind)
  • 3-4 slices of smoked nova salmon
  • 1 tbsp mascarpone cheese
  • 1 cucumber, sliced
  • 1 radish, sliced
  • fresh chives and dill
Instructions
  1. Toast the bread.
  2. Spread the mascarpone cheese evenly between two slices.
  3. Top with a few slices of nova salmon, cucumber & radish slices and fresh herbs.

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Creamy Lobster Pappardelle with Zucchini Ribbons

Posted on Mar 18, 2014 | 12 comments

“No matter how long the Winter, Spring is sure to follow” – Proverb

Creamy Lobster Pappardelle with Zucchini Ribbons

This beautiful dish says “Bring on the Spring”. Today certainly felt like it. I’m in the mood to clean up my front yard and plant Spring flowers. Thrilled that the snow has finally melted I am itching to get out there and start the beautification project. Every year Kurt and I make changes to the landscaping out front. This year I would love to have a big gorgeous rose bush but doubt it’s going to happen. I’m pretty certain that our loyal pets, the carpenter bees will return to reclaim their home in the wooden entryway of our house. They sort of became our little guards that protect us from all the other insects. Every day one of them patrols the perimeters, chasing away any bee or bug that comes close. Every day, when I get home from work it flies up to me, inspects me and then moves over so I can pass. I guess I have become its human. :) But every year they chew into the wood causing additional damage. This might be the year we put an end to their residence otherwise they will put an end to our wooden entryway.

Creamy Lobster Pappardelle with Zucchini Ribbons

I’m loving pasta lately. That says a lot considering that pasta is not my carbohydrate of choice. Give me rice or potatoes and my carb cravings are satisfied, but  I have to be in the mood for pasta. You can say I’m definitely in the mood.

Creamy Lobster Pappardelle with Zucchini Ribbons

Creamy Lobster Pappardelle with Zucchini Ribbons

Creamy Lobster Pappardelle with Zucchini Ribbons

This dish quickly comes together. It’s beautiful and romantic, perfect for a party or a nice dinner for two. I suggest pairing it with Sterling Aromatic White (Central Coast 2011) or crisp Apothic White Wine Blend. I found lobster tails on sale but if you can’t  then shrimp will work just as well. I think even crab will work fantastic. That gives me an idea…..

Creamy Lobster Pappardelle with Zucchini Ribbons

I’m sorry but I’ve been very busy at work to photograph my food, which was barely any to begin with. So instead of the usual What I Ate Wednesday, I decided to share this delicious recipe with you. Thanks Jenn for hosting week after week.

5.0 from 2 reviews
Creamy Lobster Pappardelle with Zucchini Ribbons
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 8oz package pappardelle pasta
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1½ cup chicken stock
  • ½ tsp dry thyme
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 lobster tails
  • ⅓ cup frozen peas
  • 1 zucchini, made into ribbons (use vegetable peeler to make ribbons by pulling the peeler across the vegetable to create ribbons)
  • 2 tbsp mascarpone cheese (or cream cheese if you can't find mascarpone)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • fresh parsley
  • salt to taste
Instructions
  1. Cook pappardelle according to package directions. Drain.
  2. While pasta cooks bring stock, wine, garlic and thyme to a simmer in a large skillet. Add lobster tails, cover and cook for about 5 minutes, turning once.
  3. Remove and allow to cool a few minutes. Chop into 1 inch chunks. (Don't worry if it's not fully cooked, it will finish cooking when returned to the pot)
  4. Add olive oil to the wine mixture. Season with salt if needed. Allow to simmer until reduced by half.
  5. Stir in mascarpone and peas. Add lobster chunks. Cook another 2 minutes.
  6. Add pasta and zucchini ribbons. Stir gently to combine.
  7. Serve sprinkled with fresh parsley.

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WIAW: Los Cabos, Mexico

Posted on Mar 10, 2014 | 12 comments

Hi guys!

I’ve been missing.

In case you don’t follow my Instagram account (with gazillions of pictures) Kurt and I were on a reward trip to Mexico. Thanks to Volkswagen for sending us to the wonderful Los Cabos for sunshine and tequila, LOTS of tequila.

Oh… and some AMAZING Mexican cocina. For us, mexican food lovers, it was a complete foodie paradise.

Why don’t I show you What I Ate Wednesday  Last Week through pictures of food, the resort and us.

Hyatt Ziva, Mexico

Hyatt Ziva, Mexico

Los Cabos

Beautiful, isn’t it?

Hyatt Ziva, Mexico

IMG_1612

IMG_8167

How about some food?! Jasmin’s, Downtown San Jose del Cabo is renowned as the best authentic food in town!  The Chile Relleno came highly recommended by our tour guide, a resident of San Jose del Cabo. I must say it did not disappoint, and that’s an understatement.

Tamale

Guacamole

And then there was this drink.

There are a few names to it. The Chelada, Michelada or my favorite….. the Ojo Rojo (Red Eye)!!!!  The Chelada simply adds the juice of a lime to a beer. Michelada adds a few dashes of Worcestershire, Tabasco and Soy sauce or Maggi Seasoning Sauce. The Ojo Rojo tops this little power house off with Clamato Juice. If you love a Bloody Mary you’ll ADORE the Ojo Rojo! Kurt and I had about 25 of them between the two of us.

Ojo Rojo

As I’m typing this post for you my husband is pre-making the Ojo Rojo Sauce to store “ready” in the fridge. Add a little pepper for some spice. :)

And some more pictures…

There was the hypnotic sound of the waves crashing.

Los Cabos

The agave plant I wanted to make tequila out of.

The streets of Mexico

The Day of the Dead Statue  I wanted to bring home with me.

The streets of Mexico

And the colorful streets of San Jose del Cabo.

The streets of Mexico

The streets of Mexico

The streets of Mexico

The most endearing quality of Mexican people is their pride in their country and their amazing ability to be such gracious hosts.  Rarely will you find a country so clean and beautiful, full of such light hearted and humorous citizens.  Forget what you have heard in the media about Mexico, most of the trouble in the country stays far north of these wonderful and safe destinations.  Do yourself a favor and experience Mexico, we have many times!

Thanks Peas and Crayons for hosting!

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Blue Cheese Steak Salad

Posted on Mar 4, 2014 | 11 comments

I am on a mission to eat everything we have in our freezer and pantry before I buy any more food. It’s sort of how this salad came to be. I say sort of because I actually found this recipe in the latest issue of Fine Cooking, my favorite food magazine. I happened to have two beautiful organic filet mignons in the freezer as well. They were calling my name for a few days.

This salad was meant to be!

Blue Cheese Steak Salad | Olives & Garlic

Do you ever feel like you buy food even when you have plenty of it at home? I think I do that more now since I started the blog. I made it my goal to use up as much of what I have in the fridge as possible. So far so good. I am, however noticing that the pantry is not emptying out as fast as I wanted, but the fridge is starting to look empty. Maybe if I get it to the point where it’s really empty I can use the opportunity to scrub it as well. Hmmm, not a bad idea. I wonder how that would work with Briana and Kurt when they try looking for snacks.

Blue Cheese Steak Salad | Olives & Garlic

I must warn you, this is a total MAN salad. The kind of dish you’d see on a menu at a steak house. I’m not kidding, Kurt said it’s one of the best salad’s he’s ever had. We’re having a couple over for a dinner party soon and he asked that I make this for them as well. I think it was really his way of requesting the salad again.

It’s filling too and makes for a great lighter dinner option. It especially works great when served with a glass of chilled wine. Talking about an adult meal, huh?!

Blue Cheese Steak Salad | Olives & Garlic

Blue Cheese Steak Salad | Olives & Garlic

What’s your favorite recipe that uses a lot of pantry ingredients?

Kathy Sig 2

5.0 from 2 reviews
Blue Cheese Steak Salad
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Adopted from Fine Cooking
Author:
Serves: 2-3
Ingredients
  • 2 filet mignon steaks, you can also use rib eye or any other quality steak meat
  • ¼ cup Wasabiyaki marinade (sold in the international isle of your supermarket)
  • 2 cups mixed greens or more, depending on how much salad you want
  • 2 tbsp Balsamic vinaigrette dressing of your choice
  • ½ pint cherry tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 large white onion, sliced crosswise in ⅓ inch thick rounds
  • ½ cup blue cheese crumbles
  • canola oil
Instructions
  1. Place steaks into a large ziplock bags, pour in the Wasabiyaki. Allow to marinade refrigerated for at least two hours. (You can do this step before leaving for work in the morning)
  2. Brush the onion with a little canola oil. Preheat a stove top grill pan and cook the onion about 3 minutes on each side. Remove and set aside.
  3. Next grill the steaks about 5 minutes on each side, undisturbed. Transfer the steaks to a cutting board and cover with aluminum foil. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before slicing. It's important to slice against the grain, the steak will be juicier and much more tender.
  4. Mix the salad greens and tomatoes with the dressing. Arrange on serving plates. Top with grilled onions, sliced steak pieces and blue cheese crumbles.
  5. Enjoy.
Notes
If you can't find Wasabiyaki marinade, then make a soy based marinade by combining soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, minced garlic, black pepper and olive oil.

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Pesto & Pastrami Panini

Posted on Feb 20, 2014 | 3 comments

Life is a rollercoaster. I feel as if I am always on the go, always thinking, debating, solving, creating, managing, motivating, inspiring, coaching, teaching, at the same time trying to keep my sanity. I feel like a superwoman. That in itself is powerful. Women are strong creatures. We have an ability to get things done, while juggling many tasks at the same time.

One of my favorite juggling acts is photographing dinner for the blog right before I serve it, especially when my patient husband waits so “patiently” to eat it. A funny man that he is, he loves telling people how he’s grown used to eating cold dinners by now. Thankfully this one only took me a few minutes.

Pesto & Pastrami Panini

Pesto & Pastrami Panini

This panini is on a whole new level of good. We are very lucky to be living so close to NYC. The abundance of Deli style meats blows my mind. The benefit of having fantastic pastrami within miles is phenomenal. When Kurt’s family visited from Lake Tahoe they were trying to figure out how to sneak the pastrami on the plane and bring it back home with them. Yeah, its that good.

Pesto & Pastrami Panini

I send Kurt to one of these fabulous Deli’s to pick up pastrami because making this panini was all I can think about. One of the best sandwiches I have made.

Pesto & Pastrami Panini

Kathy Sig 2

Pesto & Pastrami Panini
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • Arugula pesto (2 tbsp pignoli nuts, 1 cup arugula, 3 garlic cloves, 1 tsp lemon juice, olive oil and salt: process in a blender)
  • 4 slices rye bread
  • 1 small eggplant, sliced lengthwise into thin slices
  • 4 slices fresh mozzarella
  • ½ lb pastrami
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • salt
  • whole grain mustard, for serving
Instructions
  1. Prepare pesto.
  2. Preheat a griddle or a panini press.
  3. Season with salt. Preheat olive oil in a small skillet, sauté eggplant slices about 2 min on each side. Set aside.
  4. Spread pesto on both sides of rye slices, top with eggplant, pastrami and mozzarella cheese. Grill until the cheese melts and grill marks appear.
  5. Serve with mustard on the side.

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