Sunday, November 29, 2009

Green Tea Liqueur Zabglione Shots

One of the things that happened while I was at the street food portion of Foodbuzz fest was that I fell into conversation with Caitlin from Skyy spirits. One of the things I love to do is find a way to make spirits more than just cocktails. She offered to send me a product that I am still working with and something else. I chose the Zen Green Tea Liqueur.

After some deliberation, I decided that I would make a dessert and use the liqueur to make a sauce. Zabaglione is one of my favorite desserts ever in the whole world, and is also fairly easy to make into a sauce.

6 yolks
1 c Zen Green Tea Liqueur
1/3 c sugar

Whisk all ingredients in a bowl to blend. In a double boiler (a metal bowl over a pot of simmering (not boiling!!) water). Whisk for about 5 min. I actually did 3 1/2-4 minutes so it would be more saucy.

Be attentive or your eggs will curdle and you'll have to start over! Once it is tripled in volume, remove from heat and place into a bowl of waiting ice. If you need to, you can strain it. Once cool, let chill.

The cake didn't come out quite the way I hoped, but the kiwi and Zen were a great combination, the slightly bitter tea matching with the sweetness of the kiwi in a way that made me quite happy.

Oddly enough, all four of my testers ate the cake quickly and downed the leftover (in the little plastic shot glass). Each said that for dessert, they wanted the zabaglione to be sweeter, but loved the bitterness of the tea as a refreshing and tasty shot. Who knew?

Give it a try and let me know what you think: dessert or drink shot? Maybe you'll see this on my next menu!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Giving of the thanks

This year Thanksgiving is going to be on the fly. We got games hens, which we will be doing for the first time.

I'm going to make stuffing from Simply Recipes. a pumpkin mousse tart (pie) from Ina Garten & just wing the rest.

This may sound scary, but one of my friends pointed out I love that kind of stuff. Stand me in the center of a chaotic kitchen & I don't panic, I rock it.

Due to the fact that I am starting tonight, there will be some shortcuts, so I will post about how that works out.

In the meantime, many are the blessings to be thankful for, so don't forget its not (all) about the eating.

Blessings to you!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Foodbuzz Fest: Street Food

Cocktails and street food were for meeting, greeting and creating. We had a central spot close to the oysters which was perfect. One could wander off, get some yums and come back to find new faces wandering about.

First of all, I just really appreciate Elise from Simply Recipes who is a real pleasure to talk to and about more than just food. Second, she is a great resource. I love a person who likes to share knowledge, kindness and is adorable to boot.

RyeSF was pouring cocktails using Skyy, and Roli Roti had the most kick ass porchetta ever!

The Pie Truck had a gruyere & steak pocket pie that made you smile. I love talking to the creators of good food, as you will usually find that people who make good food, are good themselves. No really! test this theory out, if you meet someone who isn't very nice, their food, well...

The Coconut Almond Cupcakes were insane they were so good. Trust me, I am a coconut snob. I know the real deal.

Midi provided the apps while we were at Hotel Vitale. The puffs were filled with bacon cream and were incredible.

At Hog Island, our friendly shucker is Ian the Executive Chef of Hog Island in the Ferry Building. This is also where I met Amir, one half of the Duo who Dishes! This is sort of funny because someone was trying to get him to try the oysters even as he protested. He gently kept saying he didn't like them even as the flavor got to him. We convinced him oysters are love. I also met the funny and cute Jess, so check out her site!

I also discovered that I really love crispy pork skin. Thank you 4505! Seriously, my dad would be your biggest fan!

Street food was crazy The meeting and creating of relationships with so many people of like mind. The really great part is that I met others who I relate to about more than just food. This is certainly the best one I have attended this year!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Foodbuzz Fest, Cocktails, baby!

Cocktails at Hotel Vitale was fantastic because you cannot believe the view. We could across the Bay, looking out at the Bay Bridge and the Clock above the Ferry Bldg. It was night, and it was a unbelievable!

Kristi introduced me to Ryan Adams (@nosetotailathome) who I will raave more about later! He went to drop his swag in his car and we worked our way up to the top of the hotel.

We walked onto the patio and just started chatting with people. A woman stuck out her hand and said "Hi, I'm Elise" and in typical Luna style, I went fan girl on her.

Me: "Oh my god!"

Elise: "Who are you?"

Me: "That totally doesn't matter, you're like, totally famous!!"

Lucky for me, she laughed and grabbed my badge. She then told me she'd be chilling with me for the evening. Wow.

Elise is amazingly open and down to earth. I don't mean because she is Simply Recipes. I mean because frankly, many people I meet are the opposite of open and cool. One of the most wonderful things about Elise is that if she likes you, she introduces you to everybody.

I met so many incredible people! In no particular order:

Patricia @brownies4dinner
Jay D @biteandbooze
Arnold @inuyaki
Diana @DianasaurDishes
Amir and Chrystal @theDuoDishes
Biggie @Biggie
Kristen @passion4eating
Gudrun @kitchengirl
Samantha @alphaprep
Jeff and Zoe @Artisanbreadin5

If I forgot you, please remind me, cause it ain't personal, I promise!

At the end of the night I finally met the one person I had actually been hunting high and low for. I am so happy to have finally met Stephanie Stiavetti with whom I have had plenty of crazy of convos with on Twitter. lest you think I am never gonna talk about the food, stay tuned, cause that is next!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Foodbuzz Fest: the good, part 1

Where do I start? Well the day: I went to go meet Kristi (@austinfarm2table) for an ice cream adventure when went smashingly. We tried Bi Rite’s much exalted sea salt caramel and it most certainly lives up to its rep. Wonderfully creamy, a perfect balance of salt & caramel. Strangely perfect for rainy weather.

Next we wandered to Humphry Slocombe. If you haven’t done this, the walk holds some serious surprises, such as the completely magical front garden at the corner of 21st and Gurerro, which one of my friends assures me is indeed a residence.

I think I tried literally every flavor. Thai Chili Lime, the totally awesome fudgesicle, the ever popular secret breakfast, balsamic caramel, a lager (I don’t recall which one. I mean really, that’s a lot of ice cream!)

I love the kitsch factor at Slocombe as well as the really friendly service. I settled on (but didn’t finish) the Hot Mess, vanilla ice cream with marshmallow, butterscotch and bananas. I am sorry to say I wasn’t wild about the ice cream, which had a funky, sticky consistency.

I also got to try Kristi’s Foie Gras ice cream sandwich. The Foie Gras ice cream is odd tasting, but sandwiched between two ginger cookies, it’s a snappy, yummy little kick.

My favorite thing of all? The Boccalone lard caramel. Hell yeah, that is what I said! Lard caramels. Soft, creamy, with a slight spicy kick at the end. Oh. Wow.

Oh yeah, and the writing is certainly on the wall...

Monday, November 2, 2009

Cinnamon Rolls

I really wanted to do cinnamon rolls, and I didn’t want to work too hard for them. So I decided that tackling Paula Deen’s recipe would be perfect. I love Chef Paula and I feel her recipes are straightforward and easy to use whether a chef or a home cook.

For the dough:
1 tbsp yeast
½ c warm water (my trick, if it’s too warm for your finger, it’s too hot!)
¼ c coconut milk + ¼ c regular milk, scalded (Paula uses regular milk only)
¼ c sugar
1/3 c butter
1 tsp salt
1 egg
3 ½-4 c flour (I used half AP flour and ½ Whole Grain pastry flour)
And I added ¼ tsp Nutmeg for an extra spice layer.

Heat oven to 350 F. Dissolve yeast in a bowl with water. In a large bowl combine milk, sugar, butter, salt & egg. Add 2 cups of flour and mix smooth. Add yeast. Mix in remaining dough and knead 5-10 minutes. Place in well greased bowl and cover to let rise.

For the filling:
½ c melted butter
¾ c sugar + 2 tbsp ground cinnamon (or more if you really love cinnamon ;)P )
¾ raisins, walnuts or pecans (I used pecans)

Once doubled in size, punch down and roll out on a floured surface into a 15 by 9 inch rectangle. Spread ½ c melted butter onto the dough. Sprinkle cinnamon & sugar mixed together over dough. Sprinkle with fruit or nuts that you desire. Roll up dough and pinch together at edge to seal. Cut into 12-15 slices.
Coat the bottom of your pan with butter & then sprinkle with sugar. Place rolls close together and let rise (half hour to 45 min.) Bake about 30 minutes. My oven runs hot so it was about 24 minutes.

While baking, combine:
4 tbsp butter
2 c powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
3-6 tbsp hot water

Once your cinnamon rolls come out of the oven, combine all the ingredients for your glaze, minus the water. Add the hot water 1 tbsp at a time, until the glaze reaches your preferred consistency. We like it kind of thick and gooey, so I didn’t use a lot of water.

Allow your rolls to cool slightly, spread on frosting and enjoy!