Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Italian Inspired Dinner

I was fortunate to get to spend a few weeks in Italy, a few days of play and a week long yoga retreat. What an amazing experience and of course the food…. coming back I have been a bit obsessed with chickpeas and rosemary. Tonight I took inspiration from my trip for dinner. 

I made polenta that I sliced and then re heated with a slice of cheese on top. 

lightly sautéed with garlic

boiled dried chickpeas until cooked, then drained and tossed with olive oil, rosemary and fresh herbs

sautéed in red wine

fresh tomatoes sliced 

and of course a glass of red wine to go with it

Saturday, April 19, 2014


I've been wanting to run the BAA 5K for awhile but I never seem to register in time and after the marathon bombing last year I made sure to be part of the run this year. It made it an incredibly emotion race, especially getting to run across the marathon finish line. I hope to participate in this run again. Below are some pictures I took while running. 

Saturday, April 5, 2014

new baby new design

Somehow this space has become very food centered, aside from my Valentine craft mania. As I'm preparing for a trip that will hopefully bring me back to the states with new inspiration I wanted to make a quick card for friends expecting their second child who is due any day... 

I started by thinking about what I know about them, which lead me to their green shoes and their love of the Red Sox. Then I. Did a quick sketch of a baseball hat and shoes, went over it with ink and scanned it in to the computer. Since the family is growing from 3 to 4 I resized the sketch to represent each family member, added some text and printed it on a card stock. Next step was a quick watercolor and finally glued that to yellow card stock. 

I'm looking forward to meeting the new addiction to their family myself! 

Friday, April 4, 2014

hot buttered coffee

My sister sent me an article about a new trend of having bulletproof coffee. It sounded a little crazy to me. "You first" I told her.

It's actually not bad. I've tried it a few different ways, just brewed coffee in the Nutribullet with a tablespoon of coconut oil or ghee or Kerrygold butter…

It tastes nice and creamy and does give you an energy boost to start off your day.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

maple cinnamon brioche sticky buns

I cam across this sticky bun recipe and they sounded too good not to try but of course with a few of my usual twists based on what I could find. They were still delicious! Making these was a time commitment, there's a fair amount of waiting for dough to rise but they're worth it.  Even though I was warned in the original recipe I didn't realize when I started what a giant batch of dough, filling and sauce this would make. I ended up freezing 2/3 of the dough and hope that the filling and sauce keep for awhile in the fridge.

First, the dough:
1 cup warm milk
1 package or yeast
6 3/4 cups bread flour
1/2 cup granulated maple sugar
1 Tablespoon salt
8 eggs
1 pound of butter

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook add the package of yeast to the warm milk, give it a stir and wait for it at least 5 minutes for it to begin to bubble. 
Add flour, sugar, salt and eggs and mix. Then let dough rest for 10 minutes. 

Cut the butter into small pieces and begin to knead in to dough a few pieces at a time until all butter has been mixed in and the dough is smooth and elastic. Put the dough in a buttered bowl, cover and set aside for 30 minutes then put in the fridge for a minimum of 4 hours or a maximum of overnight so it will rise slowly. The dough should double in size. 

If you are going to freeze some of the dough you can do that now or wait a few more steps. 

While waiting for the dough to rise it's a good time to make the filling and sauce

1 cup maple sugar
1 cup coconut sugar
1/3 cup ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

whisk all filling ingredients together and set aside

1 1/2 cups butter
3 cups maple syrup
2/3 cup honey
2/3 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup water
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup raw pepitas 

In a pot on the stove combine all the ingredients except the pepitas. Let the sauce come to a oil and then allow it to cool. Add the raw pepitas and set the sauce aside

To make the rolls:
Get your dough and divide into 3 parts. Now is the other time you can opt to freeze the dough, wrap the portions you don't intend to use and put them in the freezer. You will want to work with one portion at a time, wrap the remaining portions and leave in the fridge until you are ready to work with them. 

Roll out first third of dough into about a 10 x 18 rectangle
Sprinkle with with filling. 
Coat the bottom or a 9 x 13 dish with the sauce and place the rolls in the dish 
Now they need to rise again, either leave them out for an hour and a half or put them in the fridge to bake in the morning. 

Preheat the oven to 350 Bake for 35-45 minutes. Once cooked leave in baking dish for 10 minutes to cool then serve sauce side up. 

Tostones - fried plantains

I worked for many years in Chelsea, Massachusetts and one of the things I miss the most is the great Latin food. It's not too hard to find sweet plantains around, there's a great plantain and kale dish at a restaurant called the Paint Burro right near my house, but it's hard to find those delicious salty, garlicy, fried plantains so I decided to try making my own. 

slice plantains into 1/2 inch rounds
heat oil on the stove when it's hot add in the plantain

cook for about 3 minutes per side then remove from the oil, but don't discard the oil yet

flatten the plantains, I used a grill press, then heat up the oil again and put the plantains back in to cook a little more 

cook for about a minute on each side, remove from heat place on paper towels
sprinkle with salt and garlic powder and enjoy!