Girls on Food

Kitchen Tools

GOF Interview: Chef Ria Barbosa Of PCP DTLA

ROW DTLA, what was once known as the LA Terminal Market, is an industrial oasis in the heart of downtown Los Angeles, packed with contemporary retail and dining spots. Among them is one of the latest additions, Paramount Coffee Project, a Sydney-based coffee shop.

PCP DTLA
777 E 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021
https://pcpdtla.com/

This giant location offers the option to grab beverages to go, space for laptop work and a full dining experience. The modern design, with color-pops of gold and bits of street art, PCP fits in perfectly with ROW DTLA.

Chef Ria Barbosa (Sqirl and Go Get Em Tiger) created both Paramount Coffee Project locations (Fairfax and The Row DTLA) breakfast and lunch menus. The menus merge comfort, seasonal, local and cuisine from Ria’s Filipino upbringing all together.

Pork Collar Sandwich – With Brie & Stonefruit on Baguette

I had a moment to sit with Ria to discuss creating recipes, childhood memories and the LA scene.

Me and Ria

GOF: Since Paramount Coffee Project first opened in Sydney, have you spent time in Australia? Did any items from the land-down-under inspire your menu?

RB: I actually have not been to Australia but I’m familiar with Vegemite! I’ve been introduced to a few native ingredients such as wattle seed and saltbush. They’re pretty amazing. I’ve also been introduced to the sausage roll which I’ve already hybridized with a Filipino lumpia filling that’s on the menu.

Sausage Roll

GOF: Have there been any cultural differences working with Australians?

RB: There’s a lot of pronunciations that we jab each other about such as herbs they pronounce the h, they pronounce tomatoes as to‐mah‐toes, and the like. We have a lot of fun talking about food stories.

I’m originally from the Philippines and the food there is still somewhat new to them so it’s nice to be able to introduce it to them and have them taste it. Because they’re so close to Asia there is already a familiarity with Asian influence so it’s nice to vibe and bounce ideas off of each other. I also love to hear about what Asian influenced foods they grew up eating.

GOF: What is the recipe creation process like for you?

RB: Often times it’s a food memory I’d like to recreate, or something we’ve tasted or heard about that influences what direction we want to take the original towards. How true to origin we’d like to stay closer to or how conceptual we want to take it. It all depends on how our diners receive it of course. For the most part, we’re approaching food from a very familiar and comforting stance but taken up a notch or two. We’re not trying to reinvent the wheel.

Corn Fritter – With Peach Pico De Gallo, Fried Egg, Watercress and Creme Fraiche

GOF: What is your favorite childhood meal and have you ever recreated it on one of your menus?

RB: Summers growing up in California meant weekends in Redondo and my parents would take my siblings and I to eat crab by the pier. I was about 9 or 10 and learned how to pick dungeness crab by myself. We’d order a crab each along with a bunch of lemon and steamed rice. I would clean the whole crab myself, storing the picked meat in the shell of the crab, mixing it with the mustard (guts) and fresh lemon juice and eating it over steamed rice. It was a revelation and a very powerful food memory. It was possibly the first time I learned to balance fat and acid. I recreated it while I was the Chef at Sqirl and it actually made it into the cookbook! It was of course, jazzed up a bit. It impressed Antoinette Bruno of Star Chefs who had the dish while they were in town.

GOF: What’s one kitchen tool you think deserves more love?

RB: The humble mortar and pestle. Sure the Robot Coupe or the Vitamix can give you super smooth and delicious things but there’s something about the rustic nature of the mortar and pestle and the texture it lends to whatever you’re making in it.

GOF: Is there one food item on Instagram you’d like to see less of?

RB: I’m going to say it… Avocado toast!

GOF: Favorite LA high end spot and favorite lower end spot?

RB: These are always tough as it always changes, but off the top of my head, current high end would have to be Rustic Canyon. I’m such a fan of Chef Jeremy Fox and crew’s skills. And favorite lower end spot…I’ve been eating a lot of Mariscos Jalisco lately, it’s so good!

GOF: What is your favorite shop at The Row?

RB: Can there be a tie for first? I’ve really been loving the convenience and the selection at Flask and Field for post work activities and I found the tool box of my dreams at High Tide.

GOF: One item on the menu you’re the most proud of?

RB: They’re all kind of like my kids ‐‐ I’m very proud of all of them. But if I had to choose one, it would be the Eggs & Ham. It’s very simple in nature but the wet brining process and getting it to where it is took about two and a half months. It was still a work in progress when we opened and it was good, but there is always a chance to make things better in my opinion. The same goes for everything else on the menu. I’m always thinking of ways to push it and make it better.

Eggs & Ham – With Baguette House Cured Ham & Spicy Sunny Eggs

The quality of ingredients stood out in the Sausage Roll – the roll comes with a small but powerful side of fresh tarragon, parsley, dill and chevril adding a lightness to the meaty and flaky pastry.

If I had to choose, my top 2 favorite dishes were the Corn Fritter – the peach pico de gallo was beautiful and the onions are sweeter, less overwhelming than traditional pico de gallo and the Eggs & Ham – I can see why this is one of Ria’s proudest dishes, cause when you can take something familiar but elevate it with your own personal spin, it’s really something special. The addition of Bub & Grandma’s baguette is also excellent for dipping into the egg and hot sauce.

Dutch Baby – with seasonal fruit (plum) and creme fraiche

Thank you to Prismatics for arranging this interview. Although this tasting was comped by PCP DTLA, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. 

Party Ideas for the Best Galentine’s Day Ever!

Happy Galentine’s Day from Girls on Food!

Welcome to our first official Galentine’s Day Party Guide 2018! Although it’s not technically an official holiday, we at Girls on Food can’t help but indulge in this very special day to celebrate our favorite ladies!

With Galentine’s Day approaching us on Tuesday, February 13th, and Valentine’s Day following the next day, we wanted to provide you with a few of our favorite party items and ideas to help you plan the ultimate Galentine’s Day celebration- the kind Leslie Knope would be impressed with.

There are many exclusive promo codes and deals in this party guide, so you can try many of these products at discounted prices! Be sure to keep an eye for them and any notes on expiration dates.

First: Send an American Greetings e-card to get your girl-squad pumped

The party invites have already gone out, your guest list is set and it’s the morning of Tuesday, February 13th. What better way to get your friends pumped for the party that night by sending them an American Greetings e-card?

Forget sappy, snail mail greeting cards of the past, American Greetings has an array of options that will make your galpals chuckle. Our favorites are the Smooth Hamster and the Michael Bolton e-cards.

The best part of American Greetings e-cards is that they have a monthly membership option, and you can send unlimited e-cards, no matter what the occasion is. It covers all your bases, letting someone special know you’re thinking about them and in a way that’s so much easier, creative and doesn’t leave an ecological footprint.

Use this link to receive a FREE 7-Day Trial Subscription at AmericanGreetings.com!

Then: Plan The Party

A better version of the little black book from 27 Dresses, the Panda Planner is a necessity for having a stress-free life and a perfectly organized Galentine’s dinner party. Combine that with a Maria Shireen bracelet to dress up your hair ties and a modern Snowe candle for ambiance and you’re in perfect party-planning mode! Want your own? Use the code MSxGOF for 15% off qualified bracelets, and GOFPANDA for 10% off your own planner, February 2nd through March 2nd!

Get That Kitchen Organized

Take a trip to your happy place, the Container Store, to get your home extra organized! We recommend customizing your drawer organizer (or using their starter kit) to avoid any embarrassment when your dinner guests go through your drawers for an extra piece of silverware. Go one step further by installing drawer liners that repel dirt and water, prevent sliding and add an extra layer to the design! I used the InterDesign Linus drawer organizer starter kit to organize my Littledeer wooden utensils, Centellino wine decanter, Chemex handles, chambray cocktail napkins, and Pottery Barn copper handled flatware.

You’ll need oven mitts that match your sassy attitude and are still functional when handling that hot stuff. Blue Q’s Oven Mitts are super-insulated 100% cotton and a percentage of their sales are donated to hunger relief programs throughout the world. Elevate your kitchen accessory game even further by pairing a Le Creuset Cerise Red Signature Saucepan with Littledeer’s Hand-Made Heart Paddle for love in the kitchen, and you’re ready to begin cooking!

Prepare Your Floral Arrangements

As can be assumed for any Galentine’s/Valentine’s Day event, flowers are a MUST! The Flower Chef by Carly Cylinder is a modern guide to do-it-yourself floral arrangements. With plenty of imagery and easy to follow instructions, you’ll be a pro florist just in time!

Set The Table

Here are some of the basics for setting a table:

  1. Place utensils in order of use, from the outside in (salad forks are left of dinner forks, and spoons are to the right of dinner knifes)
  2. Forks go on the left of the plate, and knives and spoons go to the right
  3. Only include utensils that are needed based on the menu you’re serving (if you’re not serving soup, don’t put out the soup spoon).

My favorite themed flatware, that can also be used throughout the year, is the copper handled flatware set from Pottery Barn, which enhances your Galentine’s Day dinner with the handcrafted copper-plated stainless steel. Linen Hemstitch embroidered placements are far more practical than paper lace hearts, and are versatile for formal and casual occasions alike. My favorite ceramic salad and dinner plates are from the Costa Nova Riviera Collection They are safe for the dishwasher, freezer, microwave, and oven! In addition to the impressive craftsmanship, they’re great for everyday use, being that they’re extremely durable, chip-resistant, and thermal-shock resistant.

Host a Bake-Off

One fun way to bond in the kitchen with your girlfriends is to have a bake off! Foodstirs modern baking (Sarah Michelle Gellar is a co-founder) delivers non-perishable, organic dry ingredients, all natural decorations, and chemical-free dyes to make tasty treats. Their Baker’s Club is a bi-monthly subscription that features fun kits like the Sweetheart Brownies (seen in image). You can also purchase fun individual baking kits such as Rainbow Cake Pops and Out of This World Donuts. Making these brownies was so easy and I cannot wait to try their other kits! These kits are also very fun to inspire little ones to get in the kitchen. Use promo code GIRLSONFOOD for 20% off your first purchase on their site.

 A Stranger Galentine’s

For those of you who cannot get enough of this throwback thriller, why not enter the Upside Down for a theme? Stranger Things inspired costumes, Christmas lights and a round of D & D are musts for this idea. For sweet baked treats, we recommend picking up a copy of Stranger Fillings by the Muffin Brothers (a parody cookbook) for inspiration. We couldn’t resist testing out the book with a banana-blonde wig version of Eleven’s Eggo’s. WARNING: According to a study conducted by Hawkins National Laboratory, the more advanced recipes such as the Demogorgonzola Tartlets, Friends Don’t Li(m)e Pie and The Upside Down Cake could leave guests with telekinetic powers. Collectible figurines by Funko are also fun and are perfect for any fan-girl still mourning the loss of Barb.

Vino Vixens

You’re going to need all of the essentials for a wine-centric night:
1) For aerating and chilling your whites and roses to the perfect temperature, the icicle-looking Corkcicle Air is inserted directly into the bottle after being in the freezer for 90 minutes. Use the code GIRLSONFOOD for 20% off products on the Corkcicle site, now through March 31st!
2) To avoid the guesswork for your wine purchasing, order from Winc to have 4 bottles shipped to your doorstep based on the flavor profiles you know you love. For a limited time only, use the code GIRLSONFOOD for $25.00 off your first order of Winc!
3) The online store Wine Enthusiast carries all of the best wine glassware lines, including Zafferano and Fusion. The Zafferano Red Wine Glasses are uniquely shaped and remarkably lightweight and perfectly suited for bold and aged reds with the narrow opening of the mouth maximizing aroma and a generous bowl promotes oxidation for the wines to breathe. The handblown crystal Fusion Air Wine Glasses are also exceptionally lightweight with a large bowl, while also being dishwasher safe and remarkably break-resistant (if you break it, they’ll replace it for free up with a 10-year guarantee)!
4) To help guests keep track of their wine glass, the uniquely shaped Palm City wine charms are both fun and functional, with fun themed designs such as Beachy and Wine Lovers! Use code GIRLSONFOOD for free shipping and 15% off your entire Palm City order, now through March 2nd!
5) To avoid wasting any time opening a bottle of wine, the Original Rabbit Corkscrew pulls a cork in 3 seconds and then automatically releases the cork making it the most efficient opener in your collection!

Brew Up Some Fun! 

You’re about to start enjoying your craft beers and carbonated beverages in a whole new way. Become a bartender wherever you go. Unlike traditional growlers, the pressurized GrowlerWerks uKeg uses a CO2 canister to keep your beers fresh for up to two weeks after your first pour. Pro tip: Make sure to have your 33 Bottles of Beer tasting book handy for notes on the contents of each uKeg! For your own copper plated keg, use code uGIRLSONFOOD for free shipping via U.S. Ground; expires at midnight on March 2nd.

Tea Time

Being realistic, following the wine you’re going to want to wind down with a nice cup of tea and honey. One of my personal favorites is the Blackberry Sage by the Republic of Tea, which pairs perfectly with the elegantly packaged healing Manuka Honey from Kiwi Importer (raw honey made from bees that feed on the Manuka tree). Note, if you create an account with Kiwi Importer, you receive $5 off your first purchase!

Cool Beans

With dessert (or with clean up the morning after) you’re going to want to serve delicious, quality coffee. And now that specialty coffee shops ship their beans nationwide, you can pre-order your single origin just in time for your event! I personally love Ritual Coffee, based in San Francisco, for their bright red packaging and seasonal beans that make for perfect drip coffee in a Chemex.

Time For Desserts 

Treat your gals to sweets on themed Galentine’s Day dessert plates by Nicole Miller Home, sold exclusively at T.J.Maxx. Don’t forget to elevate your candy game and have a few of your favorite Sugarfina boxes on hand for snacking! After all, Valentine’s Day and Galentine’s Day are times to indulge; with delicious and unique flavors such as “Cheers To Us” Champagne Bears and “Love You a Bunch” But First, Rosé Roses, who could resist?

An Option For The Health-Nut

We all have that one gal-pal who insists on following her diet throughout Valentine’s Day. While we may not have the same willpower as she does, we can try to let her clean-eating influence us a little. Serving an array of Siren Snacks at your party will keep her happy and allows you to indulge in a tasty guilt-free treat. These plant-based protein bites (12 grams per serving) are dairy-free, gluten-free, GMO-free and soy-free and contain no artificial colors or sweeteners. This is also a girl-powered company, founded by sisters Elizabeth and Abigail Giannuzzi from San Francisco. There’s plenty of variety in flavors with Dark Chocolate Brownie, Cookie Dough and Snickerdoodle, but our favorite flavor is the Lemon Poppyseed; a sweet and zesty break from the traditional protein bars. Use promo code GIRLSONFOOD for 20% off your first purchase on their site.

Keeping It Clean

If you’re hosting a party, you must be sure guests have the option to use hand sanitizers before digging into their favorite finger foods, but don’t you hate it when those ugly anti-bac bottles are on the table? Enter: OLIKA 2-in-1 hand sanitizers. These adorable little “Birdies” keep your mitts clean with a hand sanitizing spray that is a push spray at top half of the bird and hands wipes at the base of the bird. Use promo code: GIRLSONFOOD for 10% off OLIKA purchase ($15 minimum) on their site.

Got a friend with a major sweet tooth? Be sure to check out Double D’s Truffles & Treats for an assortment of handmade chocolates. Ten dollars will get you a 15 piece gift-wrapped box and you get to customize the flavors in the box. Plus – this chocolatier, is able to create flavors by request and have them shipped to your door.

A “Happy Ending” 😉 

Have you checked out Sugary Charm’s Kama Sutra Collection? Known for their more PG-rated cookie cutters, they have recently expanded into a naughtier line of cookie cutters. Unlike standard metal cookie cutters, these are made with food safe materials (PLA- a biodegradable, plant-based plastic, FDA-approved) and, even better, they imprint the dough perfectly. Check out their site for options and use promo code GIRLSONFOOD for 25% off your Kama Sutra cookie cutters purchase.

Start your free trial now!

This post is sponsored by American Greetings on behalf of PepperJam Networks; all opinions expressed are our own. 

Testing Fox Run’s Garlic Keeper With My Just Beet It Recipe

Could you even imagine a life without garlic? I absolutely can’t! I pretty much add minced and sautéed garlic to everything that isn’t a dessert. I always crave that intense blast of pungent flavor- there’s never a bad time for it.

Since I live in LA, my kitchen gets sunny and toasty during the day, which makes keeping garlic the old fashioned way (hanging from a ceiling, or just in a ceramic bowl on the counter) not so ideal. I’ve been keeping garlic in the fridge, and I get so bummed out when it begins to sprout, due to moisture. I was asked to test-drive Fox Run’s Garlic Keeper, and I’m so glad I did. I’m always excited to prevent any chance to avoid food spoilage and save a little cash.

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Girls on Food’s Foodie Holiday Gift Guide

Happy Holidays from Girls on Food!

Welcome to our holiday gift guide 2017! Being that we still have 6 days left of Hanukkah and 10 days until Christmas, we wanted to provide a few of our wishlist items to help anyone still shopping for the foodies in their life (even if that foodie is yourself) find the perfect gifts! No matter your budget, consider your holiday shopping sorted from us at Girls on Food!

For the Millennial cocktail enthusiast

Copper Drinking Vessels from Absolut Elyx Boutique

Send the perfect gift to the thirsty pal in your life, providing them with Instagram-worthy copper bar tools and drink-ware for every occasion. Shake up the holidays with curated boxes fit for all cocktail lovers, from the iconic Copper Pineapple to the gift sets that satisfy what every liquorist really wants for the holidays: to make fancy and delicious cocktails at home with snazzy copper mugs. After all, #CopperMakesItBetter!
Embracing all the current beverage trends, Moscow Mules, pineapples, engravings, copper-everything, premium drinking vessels and beverage tools, these gift sets are perfect for enhancing any drinking occasion. The official drinking glass of the Moscow Mule, Absolut Elyx’s copper mugs are preferred glassware of not only home mixologists but also of many restaurants and bars, being both perfect at keeping drinks cold while also being extremely photogenic for the ‘Gram. #ad

Check out the Absolut Elyx boutique here.

View slide show below for our other favorite gifts
click on the image for purchasing info

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Absolut Elyx and other Girls on Food partners. The opinions and text are all mine.

A Bachelorette Party Essential: Bakelicious Cupcake Carton

As if a rush to the altar (surprise! I’m pregnant!) wasn’t stressful enough for me these past few weeks, those baby and wedding showers you usually take months to plan became rushed as well.

Considering I would be celebrating my bachelorette party as a pregnant bride-to-be, I wanted to celebrate this occasion on a more low-key, local level. No strippers, no Vegas, obviously no drinking (at least for me). My best friend Devon (you may recognize her as #plusonebae on our Instagram) and I decided on hosting a small baby/bachelorette gathering at Pump in West Hollywood. But we had to have cake of some sort and considering their menu doesn’t offer cake options, what was I to do?

Enter Bakelicious’ Cupcake Carton as the solution!

This durable, but still adorable, carton holds 12 standard cupcakes with a latch for travel. The measurements are 6.5 x 17.5, which is the perfect size for our having on our table and for refrigeration of the cupcakes after. This carton is made with food grade plastic and it was so easy to clean with soap and warm water.

My favorite feature of this carton is the cut-out bottom for each cupcake, which makes it easy for cupcakes to pop out without damaging any frosting.

Make sure you hop on Amazon to order this carton today, it’s currently priced at only $10.60!

Once our server brought out the cupcakes, we all indulged our sweet tooth and loved the cupcakes. They were still so pretty once they came out!

Even if this gathering of my closest longtime pals was a little bit rushed, I wouldn’t have had it any other way!

This post is sponsored by Bakelicious; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. 

The Kitchen Table: Sacramento’s New Specialty Kitchen Boutique

I love the hustle and bustle that this time of year brings. I love the joy I feel when shopping for others. It’s fun to look for that perfect gift that will put a smile on your loved ones faces. Since I am a Girl on Food, it’s probably not a big surprise that I have quite a few foodie friends that I need to find the perfect gift for. Which means I am always on the hunt for that cute gadget or yummy locally sourced treat. So when I heard there was a specialty kitchen boutique opening up in East Sacramento I got really excited.

Welcome to the neighborhood!

The Kitchen Table
1462 33rd Street, Sacramento, CA 95816

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Julianne’s Post-Workout Cornish Game Hen With Fox Run’s Vertical Poultry Roaster

I’ve been increasing my visits to the gym as of late, trying to work off all of those calories from restaurant tastings. While my body and mind feel clear and great, I’ve been getting so hungry after all that stair climbing and cycling. Since I have a somewhat fast metabolism, I have to have a full meal after I do cardio heavy workouts.

When Fox Run Brands reached out to me to try a product-test on their Vertical Poultry Roaster, the timing couldn’t have been more perfect! Although most owners of this product use it to roast their full-size chickens, I’ve been wanting to experiment in the kitchen with one of the more underrated birds out there- Cornish Game Hen.

Nutritionally, these portion perfect hens (minus skin and bones) are packed with 57 grams of protein and 9 grams of fat, making them a great post-workout beastmode treat. But how does it compare to the traditional roast technique over my new roast technique with the Vertical Poultry Roaster?  Follow the recipe below to taste for yourself!

Julianne’s POST-WORKOUT Cornish Game Hen

Tools Required:

Fox Run Brands’ Vertical Poultry Roaster

Baster

Tongs

Baking pan

Aluminum foil (optional)

Ingredients:

1 Cornish game hen patted dry

1 thin slice of room temp salted butter

4 sprigs of fresh rosemary

2 slices of quartered fresh lemon

3 garlic cloves

Salt and pepper to taste (I prefer Himalayan pink salt)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Take your Fox Run Brands’ Vertical Poultry Roaster and stuff the middle with rosemary sprigs, lemon quarters and place garlic cloves at the top.
  3. If your hen is coming from a sealed package, rinse off with water. To get that perfect crispy skin, make sure to pat and dry the hen thoroughly with a paper towel before moving forward.
  4. On a clean cutting board, lay your hen out (see image above) and use a small knife to get that top skin loose, then place the thinly sliced butter on the two breasts, you can maneuver it closer to wings too. If you have additional rosemary, feel free to stuff some here also, for extra herbal flavors.
  5. After you’ve stuffed your hen, gently place the hen on top of the Fox Run Brands’ Vertical Poultry Roaster through the cavity. Place stuffed hen on a baking pan. It’s effortless!
  6. Optional – If you want to retain a little more moisture, wrap hen in aluminum foil before placing in the oven.
  7. Otherwise, bake in oven for 25 minutes.
  8. After 25 minutes at 450 degrees F, remove hen from oven and turn the heat down to 325 degrees F.
  9. While the heat is cooling down, glaze your hen with the juices with a baster. If you used aluminum foil, remove it for the next step so that it can crisp up.
  10. Bake at the pre-heated 350 degrees F for 30 minutes, and continue to glaze a couple of times throughout.
  11. Remove baking pan from heat. Then carefully remove the hen from the vertical roaster with tongs. Let it cool, and it’s ready to serve!

Looking for a low-carb side dish? Check out my recent Just Beet It recipe on our Instagram page and make sure you’re following us too! Be sure to check out other fantastic Fox Run Brands products here.

This post is sponsored by Fox Run Brands; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. 

Grilled Zucchini Nachos with Work Sharp Culinary

I recently had the opportunity to test out a new line of knife sharpeners from Work Sharp Culinary. In case you missed my previous post on how to create the perfect cheese board, I utilized the Work Sharp M3 manual knife sharpening system.

Work sharp E5 sharpener

Work Sharp Culinary has also released an electric sharpening system that is easy to use, and creates professional results. Work Sharp Culinary provided me with a knife sharpening system to try out and review for our Girls on Food Readers! Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are my own.

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Come Celebrate Summer With Chef Timothy Hollingsworth At A Macy’s Culinary Council Cooking Demo At Del Amo Fashion Center

Chef Timothy Hollingsworth in the kitchen at Otium

Summer is right around the corner, and although I’m not excited about the swimsuit aspect (too many tastings!) I am very excited about the upcoming Macy’s Culinary Council cooking demonstrations! The first one Girls on Food will be covering is Chef Timothy Hollingsworth’s cooking demonstration at Macy’s Del Amo Fashion Center in Torrance, CA.

When: Saturday, June 10th 2017 at 3 PM

Where: Macy’s at Del Amo Fashion Center, 21600 Hawthorne Blvd, Torrance, CA 90503

Price: FREE! RSVP here to ensure a spot and receive a $10 Macy’s gift card when you check in!

Culinary Council is a collection of spectacularly talented chefs, pastry chefs, and food professionals that travel throughout the country and hold various tastings and demonstrations in Macy’s all over the U.S. Check with your local Macy’s to see if any are happening near you! (more…)

SF Foodie Fest Preview: Eat Drink SF 2016

EatDrinkSF
Photo by Gamma Nine

I know everyone always claims their hometown food is the best — but when you live where fresh bay water meets sea salt and sand, it’s hard to deny that San Francisco is where it’s at when it comes to fresh produce. Now add the fact that some of our country’s most innovative chefs set up shop all along the peninsula, and us San Fran kids really have something to be proud of. So this year, I’m joining the crowd to celebrate the best of the Bay’s homegrown food, world-class chefs, restaurants, somms, mixologists — and all things to eat and drink in SF — at Eat Drink SF 2016.

Photo by Gamma Nine
Photo by Gamma Nine

About the Eat Drink SF

Each year, Eat Drink SF invites foodies, wine-nerds, culinary enthusiasts, and just plain hungry and thirsty people to meet and greet with top local chefs, bartenders, and sommeliers. The three-day event, running from Thursday, August 26 – 28, will include over 160 restaurants participants who will provide tasty treats, cooking demonstrations, and more.

 

Photo by Gamma Nine
Photo by Gamma Nine

Those looking for a little more to munch on will certainly be able to find it. Participating restaurants include:

1300 on Fillmore, Alembic, Brasserie S&P, Cafe Claude, Cathead’s BBQ, Chiaroscuro, Cross Hatch Eatery, Delfina Pizzeria, Dragon Beaux, E&O Kitchen and Bar, Gaspar Brasserie, Gitane, Hog & Rocks, Humphry Slocombe, Huxley, Konjoe, Lemonade, Luce, Michael Mina, Precita Park Cafe, Roka Akor, Souvla, Spaghetti Bros., SPIN San Francisco, Terzo, The Keystone, The Market, The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards, Tratto, Zero Zero

If you’re interested in learning a few kitchen tips and tricks, you’re certainly going to want to check out the Main Stage where lectures, demonstrations, and Q&A with industry experts will be featured all day. Check out the Events Page for details.

And let’s not forget about us drink enthusiasts! This year, Eat Drink SF will feature over 70 bars, distilleries, breweries, and wineries who will provide the events drinks as well as host tastings and seminars. Featured beverages will include:

Bass Note Sangria, Beaujolais Wines, Bodega Norton, Buena Vista Cafe, Ca’ Momi Winery, Carpano Antica Formula, Chateau Gassier, Concannon Vineyard, Fernet Branca, FloWater, Joel Gott Winery, Kikori Whiskey, Korbel California Champagne, Junipero Gin, Mr. Espresso, Provenance Vineyards, Pure Leaf Iced Tea: Tea House Collection, Purity Organics, Robert Mondavi Winery, SIMI Winery, Singani 63, Sipsmith Independent Spirits, San Francisco Brewers Guild, S. PELLEGRINO® Sparkling Natural Mineral Water, Spirit Works Distillery, Stella Artois, Stella Artois Cidre,Templeton Rye, Teeling Whiskey, The Glenlivet, The Hess Collection, Torres Brandy, Trinchero Napa Valley, Trumer Pils, Tullamore D.E.W, Wente Vineyards, Woodford Reserve, Zaya Rum, and Zodiac Vodka.

Photo by Gamma Nine
Photo by Gamma Nine

And just like the culinary kids, pros in the beverage industry will be hosting several educational seminars throughout the day as well in the San Francisco Wine School Beverage Classroom. I’m personally excited for Saturday’s Chardonnay: Burgundy, Butter & Beyond with Chris Gaither, AS.

Oh, but I do hope the SF Wine School brings more cute tattoos…

SF Wine School Tats

Join Us!

Hungry for more? Tickets are still available on the Eat Drink SF website. And whether you’re there for just one day or the whole weekend, I guarantee you won’t go thirsty or hungry.

Cheers!


Eat Drink SF is presented by the Golden Gate Restaurant Association — the local restaurant representative organization and political advocate.

All photos of EDSF are from the 2015 event. Photography © 2015 Marc Fiorito w/ Gamma Nine | All Rights Reserved

Fresh Pasta Workshop at The New School of Cooking

After a hike at Baldwin Hills in Culver City, I stumbled into New School of Cooking Cafe for a coffee. When I left the cafe, directly next door I saw a huge kitchen with a plethora of tools and I totally geeked out. I had to see what was it was all about, so I popped my head in an office part of the building. This is how I learned there was a professional culinary school in Culver City, The New School of Cooking Academy, which is really exciting cause I’ve been flirting with the idea of entering some sort of culinary program. I got even more excited when their staff member told me they offer weekend workshops for hobbyist cooks and gave me a schedule. I went home and researched the classes they offer and I was blown away with the variety of workshops. The workshops that caught my eyes were Essential Knife Skills, Artisan Bread Making, Sausage Making and Baking With Chocolate. While these all sounding amazing, I decided to take the Fresh Pasta Workshop. I’ve had it in my head for so long that pasta is such hard item to make and that I could never do it. I was so wrong.

The New School of Cooking Academy
8690 Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232
310-842-9702
http://www.newschoolofcooking.com

Ken 1

Ken 2This workshop was taught by Chef Ken Lee, a graduate of Dublin School of Catering and a “Top Chef” season 1 contestant. He started off by teaching us how to make traditional pasta dough. Semolina and all purpose flour, with 2 – 3 large eggs are needed. I loved that I could see in a mirror above him, what exactly he was doing. There is also a screen for when instructors cook on the stove.

volcano do

He prepared his “volcan-dough” (I seemed to be the only one calling it) effortlessly.

volcano do2Then he used a standard fork to gently beat the eggs into it the flours, creating his firm pasta dough. After a lot of kneading and adding flour, this creates the finished product, which is rolled out thin enough that if you blow under it, it will lift.

 

pasta

After he did a demo on making the pasta, it was time to get cooking. We were assigned tortellini, cappelletti, ravioli and tagliatelle pastas.

suppliesFor this workshop, classmates work in pairs in the training kitchen. I kind of felt like a “Top Chef” contestant myself, since I didn’t know my partner, Cheryl, before this. I felt like we were on a mission to impress the other classmates, so the pressure was on. Luckily, Cheryl is a regular student at NSOCA, so she was able to show me the ropes around the kitchen. The assistants Alyssa and Imran were also very helpful if we had any questions. The students are assigned a different style of pasta with a different sauce and/or filling.

sauceCheryl and I were assigned tagliatelle with a brown butter and rosemary sauce. The fresh ingredients for the sauce was nicely prepared for us.

 

 

 

volcano doughballI know my volcan-dough isn’t as professional looking as Ken’s, but it was also my first one, so go easy on me!

 

 

 

 

 

doughball

And besides, the end product is what matters, and my doughball was pretty sexy. While Cheryl wrapped our doughboys in cellophane, I finely chopped our rosemary.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

brown butter sage sauceThe time came to hop on the stove and get saucy. At a medium-low heat, the butter sauce started as a yellow color, which me a little concerned, cause it’s not the prettiest color. But then, once it cooked more, it turned into a lighter brown, with a cream foam bubbling, which is more appetizing. Whew!

 

rollingAfter the sauce was made, we let it cool and moved on to rolling out the pasta dough. Oddly enough, this was my favorite part (second to tasting), using the rolling pin made me feel like an honorary Italian Grandma. Rolling is also a great workout, my arms totally feeling like I pumped iron.

After the dough is rolled out thin, it’s time to cut the pasta. I’m already in love with KitchenAid mixers, but I never used the pasta roller attachment.

 

 

pasta cuttingIt’s a little tricky cause if the dough moves over to the side, it can throw the cutting off balance. So make sure you’re paying attention when you gently assist it through.

 

 

 

boilAfter the pasta boils in hot salted water and cooked al dente, it was time to taste. While our pasta was certainly the best (I’d be a traitor if I didn’t say that!), the other top two dishes were the tagliatelle with peas in a panchetta sauce and the meat filled raviolis in a marinara sauce.

brown butter pasta

After this workshop, I don’t think I’ll ever buy pasta from the store again! I’m now sold on always making it fresh, cause it really does taste better that way. I cannot wait to take another workshop and get more educated, so I can provide my foodies with more exclusive Girls on Food recipes!

Read more at The New School of Cooking Academy here: http://www.newschoolofcooking.com

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Summer’s Ode to the Veggetti

If you are anything like me you are a pasta monster. You want to eat all the pasta all the time. However; we all know how NOT bikini friendly pasta is, therefore it’s impossible to eat all the freaking time. Since I am a huge “lemme slurp the noodle” fan I decided to give that awesome little gadget, the veggetti, (the one GOF featured about a week ago) a try.

zoodles

So I took my nifty gadget and started making my “pasta”. I used 4 zucchinis. First I peeled them, then I salted them and put them in a noodle strainer over the sink (I forgot to take a picture of this, I’m a derp). The reason for this is to get all the excess water out. That way they stay firm like an actual noodle. This process takes about 20 minutes. Once they are strained I placed them on a towel and pressed lightly to absorb any extra moisture.

chicken and spicesWhile they were straining I cubed and seasoned my chicken, sautéed it in coconut oil for about 9 minutes. I then added the diced jalepenos, cooked for 3 more minutes and removed that whole concoction from the pan. I threw in my zoodles, cooked them for 3 minutes (that seems to be the magic number) until they are perfectly tender crisp.

chickjalI tossed in the cilantro and let it wilt, added a squeeze of lime and voila! You can see everything I used, including the seasonings in my amazing smart phone photography.

 

 

 

 

finished zoods

Needless to say the end result was a bunch of yumminess. I hope you enjoy! I promise next time to treat my recipe like a brand new puppy, taking an excessive amount of pictures.

Until then,
Summer