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Weekly Wanderlust 7/28/17: #GOFxHooch Event at Harlowe in WeHo, FM Kitchen and Bar in Houston, Burger Parlor’s Portland Burger in OC and Paula’s Pesto and Goat Cheese Stuffed Zucchini Recipe

Every Friday here at Girls on Food, we’ll bring you Weekly Wanderlust, featuring the best our in cities, recipes, videos and advanced notice on events we’ll be appearing at.

The Botanist Gin and Tonic

Julianne here: The #GOFxHooch event, referenced in last week’s WW column was a blast! Friends of GOF were hosted by the Hooch app at Harlowe in West Hollywood for an evening of drinks and bites!

The favorite cocktail of the evening was The Botanist Gin and Tonic. This G&T incorporates fresh muddled cucumber for a very refreshing taste! Favorite treats included Mary’s Fried Chicken Strips, Margherita Flatbread, Vegetarian Flatbread and the Mushroom and Mozzarella Flatbread.

We’re already in talks to host another event with them, so stay tuned to the Weekly Wanderlust Column for the next collaboration with Hooch!

Margherita Flatbread

Ginger here: Every time I visit Houston my friends take me to wherever Chef Ryan Hildebrand is behind the pass. That place used to be the upscale Triniti restaurant, but since it recently closed Chef Hildebrand has gone in the opposite direction, to the land of burgers and brews (or what I’ve seen described as “road trip inspired food”). But please don’t confuse FM Kitchen and Bar with your average gas station and roadside diner food! The food at FM is leaps and bounds above quickie road-side fare!

Behold the Double Burger with Shhh sauce.

In fact, the burger is so mouth-watering that it won a blind taste-test conducted by staff at the Houston Press, and if you think that’s fake news then consider this: I prefer not to eat burgers often for health reasons and yet I ate this burger twice in a 3-day period (the second time in my car during the 3.5 hour drive back to Dallas) and my nephew dragged his father to FM four times in one week for the burger while mother was out of town.

Order your burger as a single or double with cheese, lettuce, tomato, and secret Shhh sauce (so darn good!) and, instead of the standard fries, pair it with a side of hush puppies or tater tots. I think the burger is a must, but there are plenty of other tasty non-beef items like the fried shrimp and hush-puppy plate (add a side of smothered green beans for some veggies) or the lemon-thyme brick chicken.

You can’t leave without trying one of the cocktails (all under $9), like the strong but refreshing Watermelon Mule made with melon vodka, fresh watermelon and ginger beer or the Farmhouse Tea with TX Ranger whiskey, lemon and tea.

Have room for dessert? Then try a virgin shake for the kiddos or a loaded shake with shots of alcohol for the hard-working adults. You can work off the calories by playing yard games on the patio while listening to live music.

Portland Burger

Carla here: Hey all! I’ve been a pescetarian for more than 7 years now and yet my love for burgers has never left my side. Burgers without meat are always better since they have to try a little harder. #fact. 

I am beyond blessed to have the absolute best vegetarian burger in OC down the street from my home. May I present to you… Burger Parlor’s Portland Burger. Contrary to most vegetarian options, a veggie doesn’t replace the meat patty. At Burger Parlor, a square of fried mozzarella is the patty that brings envy to all your pals eating cows. The pickled carrots, sprouts and arugula are great companions as well, but the marinated beets really get you to flavor-town.  

Friends, please don’t be scared of beets — they are amazing when done right! The onion rings here are beer battered, which make them of the softer variety and beautifully melt in your mouth. If you want to be a little healthier Burger Parlor allows you to get any of their burgers in salad form or, if cheese isn’t your thing,  you could also sub any of the patties for a portobello mushroom. Also, try the shakes, they get slept on way too often! 

Paula here: We are now officially in the middle of summer, which means we are embarking on fresh delicious veggie season! Beans, corn, sugar snaps, and of course… zucchini!

Zucchini is such a versatile vegetable. You can make anything with it! From sweet zucchini breads to my personal fave Pesto and Goat Cheese Stuffed Zucchini. Luckily, it’s super easy to make and a perfect addition to any summertime BBQ.

Pesto and Goat Cheese Stuffed Zucchini 

Ingredients 

-2 large zucchini sliced thin and length wise

-1/4 cup basil pesto

-1/2  cup goat cheese

-1 tablespoon olive oil

-salt and pepper to taste

-toothpicks

First either fire up your BBQ or start heating up the grill on your stove. Brush the zucchini with olive oil, both sides and place on the grill. Make sure you get those beautiful grill marks. Cook for about 5 minutes on medium high then flip and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Transfer to a cool plate and set aside for 10 minutes until it has cooled down.

Next, spread a good amount of pesto over each zucchini slice. At the thicker end of the zucchini place some goat cheese. Don’t be shy, goat cheese is life. Once all of that is done start rolling the slice, starting with the goat cheese side, and secure each one with a toothpick. Sprinkle with salt and pepper then chill in the fridge for an hour. Such a great little appetizer! Enjoy!

Stay tuned for next week when we feature a Bay Area Bakery and an upcoming event from our friends at Thrillist.

Coconut Ginger and Lime Noodle Salad with Shrimp

When the weather is hot, the last thing I want is to make my house—or myself—hotter. Turn on the oven? No thanks. A million different varieties of salad are a culinary snapshot of my summer.

Anything quick with light, fresh, and bright flavors is right up my alley in the warm summer months. Coconut, ginger, and lime dressing on chilled rice noodles with shrimp, cilantro, and cool crunchy veggies? A little bit of summertime heaven! I want to dump this dressing on everything. If carrying a bottle of it in my purse wasn’t frowned upon, you better believe I would be doing it!

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Weekly Wanderlust 7/14/17: Omakase at Kru in Sacramento, Nashville Fall Wine Festival, Hopdoddy’s Impossible Burger and Cristina’s Hojaldres de Nutella

Every Friday here at Girls on Food, we’ll bring you Weekly Wanderlust, featuring the best our in cities, recipes, videos and advanced notice on events we’ll be appearing at.

Julianne here:

I recently visited my mom back home in Sacramento, and I finally decided to make a stop into Kru Contemporary Japanese Cuisine. Back when I lived in midtown Sacramento, I often dined at the original Kru location (at that time it was on J street… I’m talking 2007), and I was excited to check out the new location in East Sacramento on Folsom Blvd.

The new location is quite spacious, with multiple seating options for diners; bar seating, dining room seating, patio seating, sushi bar. I was a little shocked at how big of a space the new venue is. I’d describe the previous location as “hugable” whereas this location feels more “big time”.

Sushi Chef Ricky Yap

Good things come to those who wait, and I have been waiting a long time to taste Kru’s Omakase, so the day finally came for me! I sat at the sushi bar, and Sushi Chef Ricky Yap guided me through this smorgasbord of special appetizers, sashimi, and nigiri with a couple of wagyu steak dishes.

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Isabel’s Meatless Lasagna

Oh, how I love lasagna! To me, it’s the ultimate comfort food! We eat meat around here in Nashville but, I’m of the mindset of having a balanced life. I think that our bodies and the environment can be helped by cutting down on meat and when we do eat meat it’s important to use high quality, smaller farm-raised products if possible.

Here we have a whole lot of powerhouse veggies like kale, carrots, and garlic all smooshed between ribbons of zucchini and cheese. For this particular recipe, I used a layer of gluten free brown rice pasta to make it a little more substantial (for my husband’s sake). I’ve left the pasta out before and it’s totally as delicious and filling for me. Possibly my favorite thing about this recipe is it can be put together ahead of time and kept covered in the fridge!

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Happy #nationalroséday From Girls On Food!

From Editor-In-Chief JULIANNE:

Dear Rosé,

Although I had tasted you several times in my early to mid 20s, honestly… I just wasn’t that into you…until I picked up a cheap bottle of you at Trader Joe’s in West Seattle back in 2012. Over the next 5 years, I’d grow quite fond of you; sipping on a glass of you pretty much everywhere I go. 

Everything about you is a delight to us here at Girls on Food; your pale pink color, your dry, light-to-medium body and that fruity aroma. If this we were together in a movie, it would be Love, Actually and we’d all confess our love to you the way Andrew Lincoln’s character did to Kiera Knightly. To us, you are perfect.

My favorite rosé is Cloud Chaser. It’s my go-to whether I’m watching Real Housewives of… well, Anywhere, or enjoying a home-cooked meal. It’s one of the most versatile rosés I’ve ever come across.  

With #nationalroséday approaching tomorrow, a bunch of the Girls on Food wanted to share our favorite rosé bottles and recipes.

Congratulations to your growing success!

XOXO,

Julianne

VICTORIA: The Rose scene is new to me. I wanted to get into it like five years ago when I became a Bravo Housewife junky. I couldn’t find any unless it was a champagne version. Nowadays it seems like it’s EVERYWHERE.

Vinudilice caught my eye from the artistic label and the fact that it’s grown in the highest vineyard in Europe. The small (.35 hectare) vineyard is more than a century old and it’s on the side of a volcano named Etna in Sicily. It’s an up and coming area in Europe and the producer Salvo Foti is truly gifted in every aspect of the wine making process. I was lucky enough to meet him last year. He’s an incredible person and makes incredible wine. He uses old school techniques and even has a donkey working in the vineyard!

Fun fact: No refrigeration, yeasts or filtration are used in the winemaking process.

This bottle is acidic with a hint of tangerine and grapefruit. I’m not shy about being hard on wines and I can’t seem to complain about this one. It’s balanced, refreshing and sexy. A totally different style than the norm of rosé today.

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Meatless Monday: Jackfruit Tacos

There’s almost nothing more exciting for me than creating new recipes! I’ve seen jackfruit on cooking shows and on the internet and have always been curious about it. I have to admit, I am not sure if I can get a whole jackfruit in Nashville. Luckily, Trader Joe’s sells it so, on a whim, I bought one!

I’m so glad I impulse buy! This stuff fooled my husband into thinking it was chicken and it was absolutely perfect in tacos. I will say it doesn’t exactly taste like chicken. It has a slightly sour taste, but in a taco, with lime juice, it works well. It’s a perfect way to turn tacos vegan! I also made pico de gallo, quick pickled purple onions and topped it all off with sour cream (use dairy free for vegans), cilantro, jalapeño, and avocado!

Meatless Monday doesn’t have to be all salads and fruit bowls. A vegetarian diet does not have to be boring and feeling hungry. I’m not vegetarian, but many of my meals end up being meatless simply because I enjoy eating that way. Cutting out meat occasionally from your diet has many benefits such as increased energy, improved digestion, and a detox boost. Not only is your body not having to break down meat, but it also forces you to get more veggies in your diet which is always a good thing!

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Isabel’s Pretty in Pink Hummus With Roasted Beets

Beets are the root vegetable that are truly amazing to me. The colors are amazing and they are so versatile! Pickled, as a salad with goat cheese, roasted on their own… I just love them.
This roasted beet hummus takes hummus to a new level of awesome. The subtle beet flavor makes regular hummus not so regular and just look at that color! I also roast the garlic. This gives garlic flavor without having the harshness of raw garlic. Beet hummus is great on toast, as a dip with pea snacks or pretzels, on salad…really you could eat it with a spoon. After the roasting, it takes no time to whip up in your food processor. If you don’t have a food processor, get one. It’ll change your foodie life.
Ingredients
1 medium beet
4 large cloves of garlic
1 can chickpeas (drained)
1 1/2 lemon juice (fresh squeezed)
2 TBSP tahini
Optionals
Sea salt to taste
Pepper to taste
Garlic powder to taste
Cayenne pepper to taste
Olive oil
Directions
Preheat oven to 400F.
Toss beets in a little olive oil and season with a pinch of sea salt.
Roast beets and garlic (leave skin on garlic) for about 15 minutes or until beets are soft.
Add roasted beets and garlic (skin removed) to food processor with chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, spices and a few drizzles of olive oil.
As the processor works it’s mixing magic add more olive oil until it forms into the consistency you like.
Taste and add more seasoning as needed. That’s it! Enjoy!
Tip- To make smoother hummus put chickpeas in a medium bowl and fill up to where chickpeas are covered with about an inch of water. With fingers, mix around/roll and squeeze gently to remove skins from the chickpeas. Don’t squeeze hard enough to break the chickpeas, but just enough where the skin will slide off. You’ll quickly get the hang of it once you do a few. I get really OCD with this but don’t worry about getting every single one off! Voila! Smooth hummus!
For more healthy recipes visit my site or follow @izzycooksinsta!

Brittaney’s Thai Pomelo Shrimp Salad

Summer is right around the corner in Seattle. At least…we hope! The weather hasn’t been so cooperative in the last year. While May IS bringing you flowers and plenty rainbows, I am bringing you a recipe! This is my recipe for Thai Pomelo Shrimp Salad. I even made a Youtube video for it, which actually has the most views on my channel (woohoo)! Watch below:

This recipe is super simple and FILLED with bold flavors.

Ingredients:

1 Pomelo or ruby red grapefruit
½ lb of cooked shrimp
Handful of crushed peanuts
Handful of fried red onion
2 garlic cloves
2 thai chili peppers
2-3 teaspoons fish sauce
2-3 teaspoons palm sugar
Lime juice
½ cucumber cut in halves
bundle of cilantro – chopped
*Mortar and pestle to blend together some of the ingredients

Directions:

1. Cut open your pomelo and take out the meat of the fruit and place in bowl, you want bite size chunks.

2. In your mortar and pestle, add your garlic, peppers and pound them until broken down, then add your palm sugar, and a squeeze of lime.

3. Add your cucumber and add fish sauce then mix all together

4. Add pomelo and shrimp together and add the ingredients from the mortar and pestle to mix all together.

5. Add your cilantro, crushed peanuts and fried red onion, salt and pepper and then stir together!

Enjoy! If you haven’t checked out my personal food blog, please visit http://www.plentyofpineapples.com!

Summer Recreates Chris Pratt’s Cucumber Egg Rolls #WHATSMYSNACK

I’m just a girl who loves food, making food and getting inspired by food I see on social media—especially when the food is being eaten by my favorite hero, the adorkably charming Chris Pratt. He has been posting his snacks on Instagram in a funny, tortured cause he has to get in shape kind of way, which I of course couldn’t help but watch. If you guys are not familiar with his little #WHATSMYSNACK videos then you need to go watch them like now. I’ll wait.

Now that you are all caught up with what I am talking about, the snacks he is posting actually look pretty tasty. I was drawn to the cucumber egg roll. Now I have no real idea what is in his but I figured I could recreate a version and make my own #WHATSMYSNACK.

Without further ado… Here is my Chris Pratt-inspired cucumber egg roll snack.

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Queen of the Waterfront: A Cocktail Recipe With Bumbu Rum

While fictional characters like Long John Silver, Captain Jack Sparrow and Captain Hook pop into our minds when we think of pirates, did you know that in real-life, there was actually a New York-based female pirate named Sadie Farrell?

Although we don’t condone piracy, or any acts of violence here at Girls on Food, the story of Sadie and her gangs of New York history is a fascinating read

When our friends at Bumbu Rum asked me to come up with a cocktail recipe for our readers, I decided to use the underworld of late-1800’s New York as inspiration (Pirates of the Caribbean has inspired too many cocktails). 

Bumbu Rum is small-batch, hand blended and uses all-natural native Caribbean spices called “Bumbu”. Bumbu Rum has complex flavor notes including a butterscotch and banana aroma with a subtly sweet but tobacco-leaf pop in the finish. 

Since these flavors work well with festive, citrus flavors, I decided to pair it with calamansi juice. Traditionally calamansi juice is sipped on in the Philippines but it’s growing a following in the states. The toasted sesame syrup used in this cocktail adds an unexpected toasty flavor to every sip. I make a bigger batch of syrup with this recipe, since it has versatility for other cocktails, coffee drinks and baking. When making this syrup, the toasted seed scent is heavenly, so make sure to take a moment to appreciate this aroma.

I’m dedicating this cocktail to the famous female swashbuckler, later known in history as the Queen of the Waterfront. If Sadie was still with us today, we could see her sipping on one of these before a stroll on the Hudson River. 

Queen of the Waterfront 

Queen of the Waterfront Cocktail

1.5 oz Bumbu Rum 
1 oz Calamansi Juice (no sugar added) 
.075 oz Toasted Sesame Seed Syrup (see below)

Straining sesame seeds to create syrup

In a sauce pan, add 7 tablespoons of sesame seeds to a dry skillet and toast until they’re a light golden brown. Make sure the seeds don’t turn black and remove from heat. 

Then, make the simple syrup. In a sauce pan, pour 1 cup of water, add 1 cup of white sugar and heat until sugar has dissolved into the water. 

Bring the simple syrup up to almost a boil and add toasted sesame seeds. Allow to the seeds and syrup to steep overnight. Strain the seeds. 

In a shaker, combine rum, toasted sesame seed syrup and calamansi juice. Shake with ice for 5 seconds. Strain into rocks glass. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds. 

Be sure to raise a toast to Sadie, cheers!  

Katie’s Crock-Pot Fajitas: Perfect for Busy Moms!

I’m obsessed with this new (Crock-Pot) recipe, it turned out so much better than expected! Before settling in for the evening last night, I cut up my veggies, and when I woke up this morning, I sprayed my Crock-Pot with coconut oil (from Trader Joe’s), and tossed in my onions and peppers, added a pound of chicken, and spices.

 

 

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