Friday, August 17, 2012
You might remember that back in May, I went to Chicago with Verizon Wireless as part of the Savvy Gourmet program. As part of this trip, Verizon treated us to a “secret” dinner with Chef Efrain Cuevas who started an underground supper club in Chicago. The team kept the location and details of the dinner a secret all day.
We were taken by bus to a location that I know I would not be able to find again. We found ourselves in front of a gorgeous old convent. Everyone seemed a bit skeptical but we proceeded and I was completely blown away by the location. A beautiful grassy area, open air dining space, brick walls, concrete floors, modern but amazingly rustic. Chef Efrain told us that the theme of the food would be grilled meats and seasonal veggies and I was totally on board.
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
You guys, why is time moving so stinking quickly?
Just two minutes ago I was writing last week’s Wednesday Ramblings post. Yet here we are again. I can’t believe how time flies.
I absolutely love this quote. It stuck a strong chord with me this week. I put so much pressure on myself to be “perfect”. First, it’s unrealistic. But second, it doesn’t matter. Everyone has their own talents, their own strengths, their own way of navigating the world and this week I am grateful for that.
I am so glad that we aren’t all the same. That would be just terribly boring. Instead, I am embracing my differences from others. I was at a blogger meetup with some KC bloggers on Monday (at Best Regards Bakery – this place is the real deal) and the owner of the bakery talked about embracing things that you can’t change. If you make an ugly cookie that is the best tasting cookie that you ever ate – sell it that way, embrace it’s ugliness because of the way it tastes. You don’t have to be the best. Be passionate, be sincere, be personal, be Y.O.U. The end.
I am still counting the days to IFBC (7) and Colorado (16). Anyone have recommendations for what to do and what to see in Denver, Boulder, Estes Park and/or Fort Collins? Send them my way if you do!
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
I have been working on this recipe for a while now and I finally got the flavors down. My mom visited a few weekends ago and she, for one, loves pecans and maple flavoring. I thought these would be the perfect way to welcome her to our home. Not only did she love them, but the smell of these cookies baking is unbelievable. I think I could smell maple for days following.
They are buttery (as cookies should be), they are soft and chewy and rich. I had made a couple of mildly unsuccessful variations of this recipe with vanilla and, as much as I love vanilla, I was just never happy with them. So I made a game-time decision to try maple this time and it was a winning decision, it paired perfectly with the deep molasses flavor and pecans.
Head on over to Megan’s site for the recipe for the brown sugar cookies, and send her your best wishes!
Brown Sugar Cookies with Maple & Pecan
Yield: 2 dozen
Prep Time: 20
Cook Time: 25
Rich brown sugar cookies, with maple, soft and chewy and studded with pecans.
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup butter, room temperature
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
3/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1 tsp. maple extract
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or a Silpat liner.
In a medium bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, and salt until combined. Set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar until combined and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and maple and beat for 3-4 more minutes, until the mixture is very light and fluffy.
Add in the dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes.
Scoop the dough onto the prepared cookie sheets by rounded teaspoon full and flatten slightly.
Bake in the preheated oven for 12-14 minutes until lightly browned on the edges. Cool on a wire rack
Monday, August 13, 2012
We are still going strong – but only a few weeks left of our #TomatoLove recipe exchange, in conjunction with IJM’s Recipe for Change. It’s never been more important to speak out – advocate for tomato farmers by speaking out. Sign a petition, send a letter to your local supermarkets, and share the campaign with others. Ali and are so excited about the enthusiasm that this campaign is receiving. We are also so excited for this week’s giveaway – a Pro Premium Pizza Making Kit from “Pizza Dan” of www.pizzahomechef.com!
I have been waiting for PIZZA week since this campaign began. I am such a big fan of pizza. And I think that there is no better vehicle for tomatoes. I think it’s about time that I admit to you that I haven’t always been a tomato lover. In fact, I couldn’t stand tomatoes as a kid. It wasn’t until the summer before my junior year in college that I fell completely, head-over-heels in love with the sweet red fruit.