Saturday, September 18, 2010

Damn you, Iron Chef!

Watched Iron Chef USA the other night and it was battle truffle. Oh, my goodness! I am a big fan of Iron Chef, i used to watch it way back when on the Japanese channel in NYC when it was shown in Japanese with no subtitles. That was fun, guessing the ingredients AND what they were saying. Now we have an American version and it was truffles. I was drooling the entire program and went to the supermarket the next day to buy some truffle oil, all I could afford. They are costly little buggers. But it led me to desire a nice romantic dinner on a lovely Friday evening...

A simple cheese plate to start...

Squash blossoms! So pretty and delicious...


squash blossom production line...

Crispy, salty flowers!

Angel hair pasta with white truffle oil and parmesan, squash blossoms and tomatoes with sea salt and truffle oil
A lovely Friday night dinner.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Forest Park Rib Fest

Finger lickin', lip smackin', bone gnawin' good time at the Forest Park Rib Fest!

Lots of  yummy ribs

Chowin' down!

Delicious ribs, good people watching, music, and a piggy ice sculpture!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day

A very powerful message. This poster is from last year's survivors day. Today you can help by remembering, reaching out, listening. Light a candle in memory of lost loved ones and their survivors.

I will be participating in the Out of The Darkness Community Walk this October 24

Let's try to help end the stigma, and help those in need. Thank you.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Scrapple, Pork Roll and other regional food delights!

I was always very interested in regional foods. There are favorites you grew up with, then local foods you might eat on a trip somewhere. It's a neat way to experience the local culture and maybe learn a little history too. My all-time favorite is Scrapple. What on earth is that, one might ask. Pork products and cornmeal, all fried up! It is a Pennsylvania Dutch food, and according to Wikipedia, "the first pork food invented in America". Learn all about it here: My grandmother worked as a teen at the Scrapple factory in Philly, and would never touch it!

Special delivery! After a recent trip to South Jersey left me still craving another taste, I ordered some Scrapple and Taylor Pork Roll (another fantastic pork delight). Pork Roll is sliced ham that is fried and delicious too, mostly used in sandwiches. A true "Jersey Breakfast"! Here's Pork Roll's link:

Which one do I eat first?!

I decided to go with Scrapple for a late breakfast.

This is how I like my Scrapple, a couple fried slices with an egg. Ketchup is a pretty common accompaniment to go along with Scrapple.

Since I was on a "Regional Food Kick" I found a great website to order Irish and British foods: I wanted to be able to enjoy the teas I had in Ireland, home to a dear friend of mine. Irish/British foods have some really great names like Yorkshire Pudding, Spotted Dick, Digestives (cookies!). The website is really fun to read.

Just perfect for a spot of tea!

I even ordered some Vegemite, definitely an acquired taste, but I like it.  Next time you are in the supermarket, take a look at some brands you wouldn't normally try. Check the labels and see what is made locally, support your local business! And if something is considered "international food" go online and check that out too. Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Toll House up in this house

I was hankerin' for some sweets (which is pretty rare for me) and decided on making some chocolate chip cookies to fill up my piggy cookie jar. And my tummy. I used the tried and true Toll House cookie recipe

I still do not own a mixer, so it's all done by hand

Just grab a handful and drop on baking sheet...

Gobs and gobs of cookies!

I was as happy as this piggy eating my cookies!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Cookbook Score!!!!

Here in Forest Park there are many nice antique stores along Madison Street. I like to take a walk and pop in to see what they have and on a recent walk, found a major sale on cookbooks. Score! All perfect condition, first edition. I used to spend hours as a kid pouring over my mom's 1960's and 70"s cookbooks. Great illustrations, great memories.

The Savor of the Sea, complete seafood cookbook, 1966

Long Island Seafood Cookbook, 1971, reproduction of 1939 cookbook

The Language of Cookery 1968

Chafing Dish Possibilities, Fannie Merritt Farmer 1898. Am totally in love with Fannie, she taught me cooking and am very proud to have this first edition in my home!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Summer Quiche

Quiche is one of my favorite things to bake and I decided it was time for some end-of-summer taste of quiche. I love to make my own crust, and this time tried an herbed crust, adding parsley, thyme and savory. Lots of butter made it super rich and hopefully extra flaky. I was planning on making one, possibly two quiches but ended up with extra dough, so here goes three!

All the fixin's for tasty quiche! Bacon, mushrooms,spinach, green onion, monterey jack, colby and mild cheddar cheese. While I was prepping these, the crusts were pre-baking in the oven.

Seven eggs and two plus cups of low fat half and half were whisked with salt, pepper and a bit of nutmeg.

I set up a quiche "production line" to move things along...

All filled up and into the oven to bake...

Here are the three lovelies all baked, smelling wonderful and cooling off...

A delightful summer dinner. Enjoy the taste of summer while you can!