Sunday, August 30, 2009

Foodbuzz 24, 24, 24 - (Almost) End of Summer Cuban Feast

At last month's Foodbuzz party, we discussed how we could make a similar event happen again. And soon. What better reason to have a party than Raul's birthday? We also decided it would be an (almost) end of summer party since the summer is quickly winding down (although the heat is just beginning to hit us). I did a few searches of some of my favorite sites and put together a Cuban inspired menu. Now before people go getting all in a tizz, this is a Cuban inspired meal. Not all of the recipes are authentically Cuban and many of them got their own Dishing Up Delights twist. It was exhausting, yet so much fun to plan this party.

The table with some of the food.

Party Table

An interesting take on the Cubano sandwich.

Monte Cubanos

Monte Cubanos

Ham Croquettes were crispy on the outside and full of creamy ham goodness on the inside.

Croquetas de Jamon

Vaca frita with a tad healthier spin.

Vaca Frita

These black beans were so flavorful and a great accompaniment to the vaca frita.

Cuban-Style Black Beans

Cilantro Lime Rice which is better than what you get at Chipotle.

Cilantro Lime Rice

Originally I had planned on making tostones, but we decided to go the easier route of making plantain chips.

Plantain Chips

Grilled Cuban (but mostly Mexican) corn.

Cuban/Mexian Grilled Corn

The piece de resistance...the Cuban Opera Cake. It's a little lopsided, but it's the best (and most successful) layered cake I have ever made.

Cuban Opera Cake

We're all in the background, singing.

Raul's Cake

Blowing out the candles

Blowing out candles

Having fun!

The boys

Look at those layers

Cuban Opera Cake

I had sooo much fun planning this. A million thank yous to the birthday boy for being my sous chef and letting me take over his birthday party with all the food. All the recipes will be posted over the coming week so stay tuned!

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Friday, August 28, 2009

Mixed Tomato Salad

Mixed Tomato Salad

I wrote a guest post on Cooking Books! It's all about this salad. Head over there to hear all about it and then go have yourself a great weekend!

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Daring Bakers: Dobos Torte

The August 2009 Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Angela of A Spoonful of Sugar and Lorraine of Not Quite Nigella. They chose the spectacular Dobos Torte based on a recipe from Rick Rodgers' cookbook Kaffeehaus: Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Cafés of Vienna, Budapest, and Prague.

Failed Dobos Torte

It's hard to believe, but this is my twelfth challenge as a Daring Baker. It was just a year ago that I was rolling up my sleeves and rolling out lavash crackers accompanied with vegan dips. Who can forget the tossing of pizza? The most memorable, has to be the one that took the longest (3 days!!). Not all challenges have been successful. Overwhipping egg whites leads to an incredibly dry and tasteless flourless chocolate cake. Luckily I was able to try it again a while later and it turned out great. I hope to one day re-do this challenge because unfortunately, my "anniversary" Daring Bakers challenge was a complete fail. This torte is pretty simple if you think about it. It's several layers of sponge cake with chocolate buttercream and then a sponge layer coated in caramel. I first ran in to problems creating the sponge layers. My first few layers were too thin and were not coming off the parchment so I added some flour to the batter and made thicker layers. I was about to give up because I was running out of time (housewarming party to go to), but I finally got about five sponges to work with. The chocolate buttercream was a breeze, but even with chilling it was a little too soupy. The caramel was an absolute disaster. I now know that lemon juice has no business in caramel. It was repulsive.

Dobos Torte

Luckily, I was able to drown my sorrows in the pudding-like buttercream. At least this wasn't a super expensive failure. I took a bottle of wine to the housewarming instead of the cake fail.

Dobos Torte

PS, Don't be fooled by the semi-normal slice pictures. This was a total disaster. I hope to try it again soon.

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Comme Ca Burger

As you have probably noticed from my lack of posts, I haven't been doing much cooking lately. I am still not used to my new surroundings (and honestly, not quite sure I will ever be) and I have been having a very busy summer. The good news is that I have been going out a bit more which is how I am able to share this delicious dinner I had two weeks ago. After a night out dancing with my boys, we decided the cure would be to go see a Julie & Julia and to have a belated birthday dinner for me at Comme Ca. My previous experience at Comme Ca left me with nothing but good feelings so I was pretty excited to go back.

Cheese Plate at Comme Ca

Crab Cakes at Comme Ca

We started with the cheese plate and the crab cakes. The guy who prepped the cheese plate (I am sure he has an official title, but I can't remember it) was so excited to talk cheese. It was pretty incredible. I love me some cheese, but this man was So. Excited....about CHEESE. It was pretty adorable. Glen and I also shared the crab cakes which were served on top of an apple, curry puree and topped with shaved apple and fennel. They were some of the most flavorful crab cakes I have ever had and really delicious.

Comme Ca Burger

Fries at Comme Ca

For my entree I went with the famed Comme Ca Burger which is only being served at dinner for a limited time. This is a burger that was recently called "perfect" by the New York Times so I was anxious to try it. It is certainly good, but for me it was a bit too much. The patty is so ginormous, I could barely get my mouth around it and I have a pretty big mouth. It's not the sexiest thing to eat so I am glad I was with my friends rather than a date, but the leftovers are so much, you will probably have enough for another meal. After the crab cakes, cheese plate, and a portion of my burger, I was way too full to think about having dessert and my dining companions felt the same. We decided to call it an early night and I ended up passing out in a food coma bliss.

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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Israeli Couscous with Tomatoes and Carrots

Israeli Couscous with Carrots and Tomatoes

Lately my email inbox has been out of control. In a recent effort to get the number of emails down to more reasonable levels, I went on a cleaning binge and found an email from The Kitchn on twenty ways to cook anything this summer. Sort of like Bittman's salads there are no rules and things can be customized a million ways. I only recently discovered Israeli couscous and I love its chewiness. I cooked it in chicken stock instead of water to add some flavor and tossed the whole thing with lemon juice at the end added freshness. This quick recipe is a keeper and very versatile for any time of year.

Israeli Couscous with Carrots and Tomatoes

Israeli Couscous with Tomatoes and Carrots
(Adapted from The Kitchn)

Makes 2 servings

1 1/3 cup Israeli couscous
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 1/3 cup low sodium chicken stock
4 ounces cubed pancetta
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
Handful cherry tomatoes, halved
Juice from 1/2 small lemon
Salt and pepper to taste

In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the couscous and toast until it is lightly brown. Add the chicken stock and bring up to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook until all the liquid is absorbed.

Meanwhile, in a medium saute pan, cook the pancetta until it is crispy. Remove the pancetta from the pan with a slotted spoon and leave about 2 teaspoons of the rendered fat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the carrots and cook, until they are slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Add the coucous to the garlic and carrot mixture and toss to combine.

Remove the pan from the heat. Add the pancetta back to the couscous mixture and season with lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Toss the couscous mixture with the sliced tomatoes and serve warm.

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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Napa Valley Grille

Blood Orange Mojito

A couple of years ago I had a random dinner out with my friend Dan at Napa Valley Grille. I say random only because we didn't know about the place, but we happened to be in Westwood so we stopped in. It was a great dinner, but for some reason I never went back. This past Sunday we decided to visit the restaurant for happy hour before heading to see JenFinn's play. For some reason none of us had eaten anything that day so to say we were starving was putting it lightly.

Beef Slider

It's a good thing the restaurant was so empty. Our food came out almost immediately and everything was so good. One blood orange mojito for Raul and wine for the rest of us and soon all thoughts of hunger had vanished.

Grille Pizzette

Dan's choice was the mac and cheese. It was unbelievably creamy.

Creamy Macaroni and Cheese

Of course when you get burgers, you have to have fries. In this case they had plenty of garlic and herbs.

Garlic and Herb Fries

The crispy calamari had an interesting mix of calamari, lemons, and onions. Fried lemons are really good. Who knew?

Crispy Calamari

The iceberg wedge wasn't my favorite, but that's mostly because I don't care for iceberg. The toppings were great though.

Iceberg Wedge Salad

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Monday, August 17, 2009

Cherry Tomato and Arugula Salad

Cherry Tomato and Arugula Salad

Do you ever have those moments when you just can't decide what to eat so you don't eat anything? I totally had one of those yesterday. Luckily after some hemming and hawing, I finally decided to tackle another one of Bittman's salads. I had all the fixings to make #10. It's easy, fresh and so flavorful. I love the flavor you get from cooking the tomatoes. Instead of curry powder, I used a little Vadouvan (courtesy of The Spice House). This salad is great on its own, but I imagine a piece of grilled chicken breast would be an excellent addition and make this a complete meal.

Cherry Tomato and Arugula Salad
(aka #10 on Mark Bittman's List)

Makes 1 serving

Large handful arugula
Large handful cherry tomatoes
Juice from 1/2 lime
1 tablespoon mint, chopped
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Pinch Vadouvan (or curry powder)

Cook the tomatoes in olive oil over high heat until they brown lightly, sprinkling with curry powder. Cool a bit, then toss with the arugula, mint and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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Friday, August 14, 2009

Greek-ish Salad with Spelt Berries

Greek-ish Salad with Spelt Berries

I'm back!!! It has been killing me to be away from the blog and the kitchen. I am finally settled in to my new surroundings and as of last night I FINALLY have an Internet connection. Let me tell you, the people at AT&T were useless when it came to setting that up (no offense if you work there, but it was a PAIN). Anwayyyyy, happy Friday!! I am so happy to have something to share with you.

I have been looking for healthier meals that don't skimp on flavor. As I briefly mentioned last week, I am on a quest to be hot by my next birthday. In fact, I even joined a gym last week as part of my mission. Even though the farmers market is no longer down the street, I managed to squeeze in a trip last weekend. I loaded up on veggies with this salad in mind, but I wasn't sure how it was going to come together. I should not have been worried. It was really delicious. I have had the spelt berries for a while because I wanted to see how they compared to other grains I have used. They are very similar to wheat berries. In fact, I didn't really notice a difference. Since they take so long to cook, you can use that time to chop the vegetables, do a load of laundry, give yourself a manicure, or whatever else you're in the mood for. Instead of making a real dressing, I just added a couple splashes of vinegar and a splash of olive oil until I got something that I liked. Since I had salted the water that the spelt was cooked in and the olives and feta are salty, I was really careful about the amount of salt I added to the finished product, plus I was serving it to someone who can't have too much sodium. Not only did it get rave reviews from that person, but I thought it was pretty darn good myself. This is perfect for summer when you don't feel like doing a lot of cooking and you want something fresh. Plus it is delicious without making you feel guilty after eating it!

PS, thanks to my Twitter friends for helping me pick red wine vinegar over balsamic. Is was the right way to go!

Greek-ish Salad with Spelt Berries

Greek-ish Salad with Spelt Berries
(By Esi)

Makes 2-3 servings

1 cup spelt berries
4 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
2-3 handfuls baby spinach, roughly chopped
4-5 Persian cucumbers, chopped
2 tablespoons sliced black olives
Red wine vinegar to taste
Extra-virgin olive oil to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

Cook the spelt berries according to package instructions. Drain and rinse with cold water to cool the spelt down. While the spelt is cooking, chop all the vegetables and mix together in a large bowl. Lightly season with salt and pepper. Add the cooled spelt berries to the vegetable mix and toss to combine. Add vinegar and olive oil to taste and season with more salt and pepper if necessary. Spoon the salad onto plates and top each plate with the crumbled feta.

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Sunday, August 9, 2009

Fried Shrimp Wontons

Fried Shrimp Wontons

Back when I was living at my "old place" I was looking to clean my fridge and freezer in the weeks before I was moving. One of the last recipes I made were these wontons. For some reason, I always get the inkling to make wontons when I am super starving. That is so not a good idea. In fact, I can't even tell you exactly how many wontons I made because I was eating them as I went along. Although they take some time to fill, they are totally easy to make because you can use pre-made wonton wrappers (unlike the potstickers I made a while back). Unsurprisingly, these wontons came from the same source as the potstickers. Not only does Jen have amazing photography, but the step by step pictures always lure me in. Once again, I am hoping to start including more step by step photos in my posts, but that will certainly take some time. Anyway, these wontons are so delicious and restaurant quality. Maybe even better because you know exactly what is going in them. Believe it or not, all these ingredients were things I already had on hand so it didn't require a last minute trip to one of the two stores I used to live next two (man, I miss those stores already!). These would definitely be fun to make with a group of people so the next time you are having a party, put these wontons on the menu!

Fried Shrimp Wontons

Make sure you squeeze out all of the air when pressing the wontons together, otherwise you will end up with large air pockets.

Fried Shrimp Wontons

Fried Shrimp Wontons
(Lightly Adapted from Use Real Butter)

Makes 20-25 wontons

For the wontons:
8 ounces shrimp, peeled, deveined, coarsely chopped
2 green onions, washed, trimmed, diced
1 1/2 teaspoons ginger, peeled and grated
1/2 cup water chestnuts, small dice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon low-sodium soy sauce
1-2 dashes red pepper flakes
1 1/2 teaspoons sesame oil
20-25 wonton wrappers
Water for sealing wrappers
Canola oil for deep-frying

For the dipping sauce:
1/2 teaspoon ginger, grated
Pinch sugar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
2-3 drops chili oil

Mix the shrimp, green onions, ginger, and water chestnuts in a bowl. Season with salt, red pepper flakes, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Mix well.

Place a teaspoon of filling in the center of a wonton wrapper and wet the edges on one half of the wonton with the water. Fold the wrapper in half on the diagonal and press the edges together, pushing out any air pockets in the wonton. Dab one of the bottom corners with more water and fold the wings in front of the wonton so that they cross at the corners. Press together.

When all wontons are folded, heat oil in a deep medium saucepan to 350 degrees. Fry 5-6 wontons at a time until they are golden brown. Remove and set on a plate lined with paper towels. To make dipping sauce, combine all ingredients and stir until sugar is dissolved. Serve hot wontons with dipping sauce.

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Friday, August 7, 2009

Strawberry Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Strawberry Cake with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

Sometimes I get really random urges to bake something. These urges usually come late at night and once I get the idea in my mind, I can't let it go. The week before my move, I had one such urge. I had some strawberries in the fridge so I went looking for recipes. I remembered the strawberry cupcakes I saw on Food Librarian. Like me, Mary always seems to be baking at odd times of the day and night, and her results are always phenomenal! Believe it or not, I am one of the few people who doesn't like Sprinkles cupcakes (I much prefer the Crumbs brand), but I do remember having this cupcake last year at JenFinn's birthday and I wasn't completely repulsed by it. Those were homemade as well so maybe that is the secret. I decided to pair them with a cream cheese frosting because I had some cream cheese I didn't feel like transporting and I added a vanilla bean because things are usually twenty times better with a vanilla bean thrown in. I definitely enjoyed the cake, but I wish there had been more of a pop in the strawberry flavor. The frosting was fantastic, though I may use a bit more cream cheese in it the next time. Since I just *happened* to have some toasted coconut laying around, I topped my mini cakes with it.

Strawberry Cake with Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

Strawberry Cake
(From Sprinkles via Everyday Food)

Makes 12 cupcakes or 3 4.5-inch cakes

2/3 cup whole fresh or frozen strawberries, thawed
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 cup milk, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
2 large egg whites, room temperature

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 or 3 4.5-inch cake tins or line a muffin pan with liners.

Place strawberries in a small food processor; process until pureed. You should have about 1/3 cup of puree, add a few more strawberries if necessary.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a small bowl, mix together milk, vanilla, and strawberry puree; set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on medium-high speed, until light and fluffy. Gradually add sugar and continue to beat until well combined and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and slowly add egg and egg whites until just blended.

With the mixer on low, slowly add half the flour mixture; mix until just blended. Add the milk mixture; mix until just blended. Slowly add remaining flour mixture, scraping down sides of the bowl with a spatula, as necessary, until just blended.

Divide batter evenly among prepared cake pans or muffin cups. Transfer pan to oven and bake until tops are just dry to the touch, 25 to 35 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack and let cupcakes cool completely in pan before icing.

Vanilla Bean Frosting
(Adapted from Week of Menus)

1/2 cup of unsalted butter, softened
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 whole vanilla bean, split and vanilla beans scraped out
1 1/2 -2 cups confectioner sugar

Cream butter and cream cheese together on medium speed until texture is uniform. Add 1 cup of confectioners sugar and beat on low speed until sugar is all incorporated. Add 1 more cup and again mix on low speed until sugar is all incorporated. Add scraped vanilla beans and mix on medium speed for 8 minutes, occasionally scraping down sides until it is creamy.

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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Ants on a Tree (Pork Stir Fried with Noodles)

Ants on a Tree (Pork Stir Fried with Noodles)

I found this dish on TasteSpotting a couple of weeks ago and knew immediately it was what I would be making with the rest of the pork I had sitting in the freezer. Believe it or not, I actually had a few jalapenos left too and I was trying to take as little as possible with me in my move. This is an easy and quick dish and it has excellent flavor. I didn't have Szechuan peppercorns so I subbed in a bit of hot chili oil and I used regular low-sodium soy sauce throughout the whole dish because that was all I had. I really loved the flavor in the pork with the sweet and savory combo that makes me swoon. As you can tell from the pictures, I used glass noodles because they were what I had on hand. To be perfectly honest, I am not sure of the difference between glass noodles and bean thread noodles (if there is one), but they were perfectly wonderful in this recipe and I had a great texture from them so I am not complaining. This is definitely something I will try again and next time I will try and mix it up by adding more vegetables to the mix.

Ants on a Tree (Pork Stir fried with Noodles)
(Slightly Adapted from Simmer Down)

Makes 2-3 servings

8 ounces ground pork
3 tablespoons soy sauce, divided
1 tablespoon sugar
2-3 dashes red pepper flakes
1-2 dashes hot chili oil (optional)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
6-8 ounces cellophane (bean thread) noodles (I used 6.5 ounces)
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon peanut or other neutral oil
2 scallions, white & light green parts only, thinly sliced
1 red jalapeño or Fresno chili, minced
1/4 cup vegetable stock

Put some water on to boil. Meanwhile, 2 tablespoons soy sauce and cornstarch in a medium-sized bowl to dissolve the cornstarch. Add the sugar, red pepper flakes, hot chili oil (if using), and pork, stirring thoroughly to combine. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.

Place the noodles in a large bowl and when your water comes to a boil, pour over the noodles to cover. Soak for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, then drain in a colander.

Heat oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add the scallions and jalapeño and cook 30 seconds, stirring frequently. Add the pork and stir-fry until no longer pink, breaking up any chunks, about 3 minutes.

Add the noodles, chicken stock, and remaining soy sauce. Cook, tossing the noodles with tongs or two wooden spoons, until the sauce is absorbed and the pork is well distributed throughout the noodles. Transfer to a large platter and serve immediately, garnishing with a few chopped scallions if desired.

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Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Shaved Asparagus Salad

Shaved Asparagus Salad

Like many people, I have been planning just how many of the salads I can make on Mark Bittman's recent list of 101 Summer Salads (Kelly of Sass and Veracity is going to make them ALL). I went through the list several times and highlighted the salads I wanted to make immediately. This was one of the first and it was especially helpful that I had a bunch of asparagus in my refrigerator that was in danger of going bad. While you're shaving the asparagus, boil the eggs and you have delicious dish in no time. It's fresh and filling and definitely will not weigh you down. This is definitely a good recipe to have on hand as I start my quest of looking awesome by my 30th birthday. Wish me luck!!

Just a note, I am without internet connection at home all week so please bare with me in replying to comments, etc.

Shaved Asparagus Salad

Shaved Asparagus Salad
(From Mark Bittman aka #4 from The List)

Makes 1 serving

1 bunch large asparagus, shaved with a vegetable peeler, leave the tips whole
1-2 eggs, hard boiled and cut into chunks
Extra-virgin olive oil
Lemon juice
Salt and pepper

Mix the oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste and toss with the asparagus. Top with the cut up eggs and serve immediately.

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Monday, August 3, 2009

Grilled Cinnamon Bruschetta with Strawberries and Mascarpone

Grilled Cinnamon Bruschetta with Strawberries and Mascarpone

Finally! The last of the appetizers from my fabulous cocktail party! It was such a great time, it's taken me a whole week to talk about it, lol. Anyway, these are a nice little sweet treat and much of it can be prepared ahead of time. I cut up the bread, mixed the cinnamon sugar and sliced the strawberries the night before so the day of the party, I just had to dip and cook the bread before assembling. Luckily, I had many helping hands which made the process much quicker.

I thank you all for the well wishes on my move. I am slowly, but surely getting settled in (although still missing internet which is fun for a food blogger - note the sarcastic tone). Happy Monday!!

Grilled Cinnamon Bruschetta with Strawberries and Mascarpone
(From Sophistimom)

1 baguette, thinly sliced on an angle
3 tablespoons butter at room temperature
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup (120g) mascarpone cheese
1 pint (300g) strawberries, washed, dried, and sliced

Butter one side of each slice of bread. Mix together cinnamon and sugar, and dip the buttered side of bread in the cinnamon sugar. Place the bread, cinnamon and sugar side down, in a nonstick skillet set over medium heat. Watch them carefully to ensure the sugar doesn’t burn. Remove from pan when the cinnamon and sugar caramelizes. Allow to cool slightly on a cooling rack.

Spread each cinnamon toast with 2-3 teaspoons of mascarpone cheese. Garnish with 2-3 slices of strawberries.

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Sunday, August 2, 2009

Grilled Prosciutto-Wrapped Shrimp

Prosciutto-Wrapped Shrimp

Talk about a ridiculously awesome recipe for not a lot of effort. This is a wonderful recipe to have for a party and a real crowd-pleaser. You don't have to worry about the lack of seasoning on the shrimp because the proscitutto adds it's nice saltiness and the smoky grill flavor is all you need to make this complete. Of course after the fact, I noticed Jen's suggestion of a balsamic drizzle would probably kick these up, but they were lovely as they were.

Today is the big move!! Luckily, I have some posts planned while I am getting settled in to my new digs. I am also planning a quickie (but hopefully fruitful) farmers market trip. It's the 15th anniversary of my beloved Beverly Hills farmers market! Have a great Sunday everyone.

Grilled Prosciutto-Wrapped Shrimp
(From Use Real Butter)

48 medium shrimp, peeled and de-veined
12 thin slices prosciutto

If using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for 30 minutes. Slice the prosciutto lengthwise into four strips per slice to get 48 strips in total. Pat the shrimp dry and wrap a strip of prosciutto around the midsection of a shrimp. Secure (skewer) with a bamboo or metal skewer. Repeat for all of the shrimp. Grill over high heat for 1-2 minutes per side. Serve immediately.

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Saturday, August 1, 2009

Mozza 2 Go

I had to take a break in my party programming and Daring Bakers cookies to tell you about the incredible dinner I had last night. For the last two years I have been aching to dine at one or both of the famed Mozza restaurants in Los Angeles. For one reason or another the timing has never worked out and I have been relegated to watching friends and food bloggers have delicious meal after delicious meal while I stood jealous on the sidelines. Well a few weeks ago, Pizzeria Mozza launched their Mozza 2 Go take out and delivery service I had originally planned in indulging in this feast on my birthday, but it turns out delivery is only Tuesday-Sunday so I patiently waited almost two weeks to partake in this indulgence. Not only am I so glad I was patient, I am so glad I finally ordered! My dinner was fantastic!!

First up was Mozza's version of a "meat lovers" pizza with bacon, salami, prosciutto, and fennel sausage. Talk about meat lovers. This thing was loaded, but not in a bad way. Check out that sausage!!

Mozza's "Meat Lovers" Pizza

Next was the Pizza Alla Benno with speck, pineapple, mozzarella, and jalapenos. This is basically Pizzeria Mozza's version of a Hawaiian pizza but so much better than what you get at Dominoes. The jalapenos were the best with a slow heat that slowly built up. I love my spice and the sweetness of the pineapple was perfect with the salty speck.

Mozza's Pizza Alla Benno

The last, and my favorite of the evening was actually a last minute add on. I ordered the Pizza Bianca with fontina, mozzarella, sottocenere (a truffle cheese) and sage. I was so pleasantly surprised by this pizza. I had Googled sottocenere before I ordered it which is what helped me make my last minute decision. One of my most favorite foods is this Italian truffled cheese I found at Trader Joes and this is basically a high quality version of that on a pizza. The crispy sage was perfect with the salty cheeses. I wanted to eat the whole thing, but managed to restrict myself to one slice.

Mozza's Pizza Bianca

One of the things I noticed about all the pizzas was the crust. It is think in the middle and chewy on the outside. It is so incredibly tasty! Normally I prefer really thin crust throughout the pizza, but I could not get enough of this crust. The only (minor) complaint was that on the "meat lovers" pizza, the crust is a bit too thin in the middle to hold all the toppings. Is that even a complaint? It was a mouthful of saucy, meaty, pizza AWESOME! To finish my dinner, I ordered the Butterscotch Budino which is basically a rich pudding, topped with a layer of caramel and a dollop of whipped cream. After all the pizza deliciousness, it was difficult for me to have more than a spoonful, but it is lovely and creamy and was a perfect end to an incredible dinner.

Mozza Butterscotch Budino

I am beyond thrilled I finally got to have Pizzeria Mozza for dinner and it was even better that it was in the comfort of my own home...well, my home for the next twenty four hours as I am moving at the ass crack of dawn tomorrow. If you are in the LA area and are feeling a pizza craving, I highly recommend Mozza 2 Go. It's certainly pricey, but worth it for a special occasion or a rare indulgence. For more details, visit the website. Have a fantabulous weekend, I am off to finish packing!

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