Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Father's Day Weekend

For some reason, it seems like dads are the hardest people to pick out gifts for!  I solved this issue early by figuring out what I was going to do for Father's Day a couple of months ago when my dad was raving about a chimichurri sauce served with dinner at an Argentinian client's home.  I wanted to make a big batch of it myself to give him!  In case you don't know, chimichurri is a very salty green sauce made with fresh oregano, parsley, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, red pepper flakes.  It's not used as a marinade, but as a dipping sauce for grilled meat, especially steak and pork; it went perfectly with the grilled pork tenderloin we made for dinner that night.  For dessert, I made a chocolate raspberry trifle filled with moist brownies, chocolate mousse and fresh raspberries.  Summer cooking can't get much better!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Peanut Butter Banana Oatmeal Smoothies

I had the pleasure of getting mouth surgery yesterday morning, which has resulted in a liquid diet for the next 4-5 days.  It's the worst.  I made a promise to myself that I will try to follow these instructions for at least 2-3 days, but I'm going nuts already considering the fact that dairy upsets my stomach and they said no hot foods.  What happened to soup and oatmeal being my Plan A?!?!  Clearly I had to get creative to avoid not eating altogether, so I created a delicious Plan B.  My peanut butter banana oatmeal smoothies are not only filling, but taste like a dessert!  And did I mention that they're less than 400 calories (thank you almond milk!); this beats my favorite Mitchell's PB Banana Smoothies by a long shot!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Cleveland Art Panels

I got a new hobby...painting!  Actually, I'm pretty proud of myself that I found an activity I enjoy that doesn't involve cooking or working out.  This idea all started when Howie and I were in Seattle.  We were walking around the artsy part of Pike's Place Market and saw some incredible wood panels that had a painted background with buildings and skylines carved in using a CNC router.  Last weekend, we tried replicating them on our own, swapping Cleveland for Seattle and subtracting the CNC routing part.  I loved every minute of it, which is surprising since I usually prefer drawing with ink or graphite over painting.  

Friday, June 6, 2014

Island Cookies

For my final studio project, I'm designing a food television production studio on the Case Western Reserve University campus.  My 3-week programming phase of the project involved so much research on food, that I kind of felt obligated to bring a little portion of the discipline to my studio.  I decided to bake one of my favorite sweets, island cookies.  The smooth white chocolate, warm pecan flavor and hints of coconut make for a perfect summertime treat!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Mediterranean Night!

I'll have to admit, sometimes I might have a minor tendency to stick too close to my comfort zone with cooking.  This comfort zone includes but is not limited to: chicken, potatoes, rice, squash, peppers, garlic, oregano and basil.  I can't help it if I know what I like!  I decided it was about time I break my usual routine and try to make something I've never attempted before...Mediterranean.  After scouring the internet researching traditional Greek and Mediterranean spices, I dove right in and came up with my own chicken souvlaki recipe with couscous, toasted pita bread and spinach salad.  After seeing how good it tasted (on the first try nonetheless), I'm definitely stepping out of my comfort zone more often!