Author Archives: krt

Who doesn’t love pancakes?

The husbo & I woke up this morning and – despite having a heavy dinner last night – we started talking about brekkie/ brunch plans. As usual, I wanted pancakes. He was onboard. Ok, so now for the great debate: do we stay in and make them… or do we go to the Diner? I was about to vote the super lazy route, and then I remembered I had this bomb recipe for lemon ricotta pancakes from a Hello Fresh box we once received.

Score. We were staying in.

I was even more excited because I knew we already had ricotta and lemons in the fridge. The recipe calls for a bunch of things, including baking powder, which I knew I had too. Double score.

So then I go a’searching for the rest of the ingredients…

Eggs? In the fridge.

Flour? Found it in the pantry!

Ok, baking powder? I looked in the pantry, and it wasn’t there. I looked in the spice drawer – nope, not there. Fridge, maybe? Nada. 

At this point I’m thinking, ok I know I have baking powder somewhere. It has a blue cap, and it’s in a white container. I looked everywhere, and I couldn’t find the damn baking powder. Wtf.

In my rage (which, really, was not rage, just low key annoyance) I thought I let my sister borrow it and she never returned it! Grrr. Then I realized why would that ever be the case? Ok, fine. That’s not it. Where the hell was it? I debated going over to the neighbors (in my pjs and crazy bed hair) to ask if I could borrow some from them. I was that desperate to make these pancakes!

Eventually, I gave up. Whatever. I’ll improvise. That’s when I noticed we literally had just one cup of ready made pancake mix left – yay last cup! Thank god. I added the ricotta, lemon zest, lemon juice, nutmeg (and threw in some cinnamon because why not?) and boom: lemon ricotta pancake mix.

Boy, were these pancakes GOOD.

This was only the second time I’ve made this recipe, and I’ve decided that next time I would:

  • add a lot more lemon juice – maybe like a whole lemon or something – the citrus was really, quite subtle
  • add more nutmeg, too – maybe 2x what the recipe calls for
  • garnish with whipped mascarpone (fat kid alert!) & lemon zest

When you guys make these babies, let me know how they turned out/ what you might have done differently.

BBQ S’17

In the past, the husbo & I have had summer BBQs on our rooftop at whatever apartment community we lived at – but since our last building didn’t have a rooftop, we haven’t had a cookout the past couple of years. Now that we’ve lived in our town home for a year, and have recently renovated our outdoor areas, we decided it was about time to have a housewarming/ my birthday celebration BBQ, so we could reignite our summer tradition.

Usually we would go to Costco for ingredient shopping, and buy everything in bulk – burger patties, hotdogs, buns, beer, chips, etc. but I wanted to do something different. I wanted us to embrace the (amateur) chefies we have become, and attempt a gourmet BBQ.

This was our spread below. We had originally set up everything outdoors and I had a beautiful palm leaf print tablecloth, but we had to bring everything indoors because it was wayyy too hot. That, and everyone was hanging out indoors, in the AC.

btw, that’s my half eaten falafel that I put down to take the photo! lol.

We found the recipes on the interwebs, and then customized them to our liking. 

  • saucy asian meatballs — we used ground lamb instead
  • baby spinach/ strawberry/ goat cheese/ candied pecan salad — don’t have a recipe for this but it’s pretty straightforward to prepare
  • watermelon/ feta/ blackberry skewers w/ balsamic reduction drizzle — the balsamic reduction was courtesy of a friend, who taught me how to make it (all you do is boil down balsamic until it thickens! who knew!)
  • meatless meatballs from trader joe’s w/ same ginger hoisin marinade
  • stacy’s multigrain pita chips 
  • kettle brand korean BBQ chips — these chips are the BEST and totally remind me of chips from HK
  • chocolate chip cookies
  • gourmet franks w/ herbed goat cheese/ sautéed onions/ jalapeño slices
  • vanilla/ chocolate/ nutella cakepops — didn’t find this recipe on the interwebs and can’t share it with you guys because it’s a secret, sorry homes!
  • buttered corn on the cob
  • gourmet franks w/ pesto smear/ mozzarella pearls/ heirloom tomatoes/ balsamic drizzle
  • grilled vegetable cajun pasta salad — tweaked the recipe since we wanted to serve it cold, with rotini instead, and no chicken/ sausage
  • assorted mediterranean dips
  • trader joe’s falafel
  • rosé champagne jello squares  — these were so yummy! thank goodness we did a trial run of this recipe a couple of weeks ago, but the first time round they came out super strong. see photo below!
  • rosé & watermelon ice lollies not pictured because we totally forgot to put them out; also we didn’t use orange liqueur like the recipe called for

It was so much fun making all the food for the party; we spent days preparing for it, and put together an excel spreadsheet with everything that needed to be done. We even forced my bff4l, who was visiting from NY, to help with the mis en place (sorry, Avita!) but we seriously underestimated how much there was to do! And how much food we had left over! It’s been three days since the party and we’re still eating the food.

I also want to share the fun peony petal ice cubes that I made for the champagne bin. I first saw the idea somewhere on facebook, and thought it was absolutely brilliant! It was so easy, and a cheap way to dress up the party. I usually buy flowers for the home on a weekly basis anyway, and would have thrown them out once the petals fall off- so it was a win-win for me. This is definitely going to become my thing anytime we have a party!

photo cred: bff4l 

rosé champagne jello shots || awesome sushi plate is from cb2


 

Is this thing still on?

Perhaps a little bit of a revamp is in order. An edgier blog icon, a revised About page, and tweaks to the social media buttons. I threw in a quirky fortune I once received in a cookie and – viola!

Admittedly, it’s a tiny step, but a step in the right direction, nonetheless. 

I’m sorry I abandoned you, blog. Are we still friends? Let’s try this thing over. 

define: confit

this specialty of France is derived from an ancient method of preserving meat (usually goose, duck or pork) whereby it is salted and slowly cooked in its own fat. the cooked meat is then packed into a crock or pot and covered with its own cooking fat, which acts as a seal and preservative.

With Thanksgiving just having passed, I had seen so many turkey recipes that called for the bird to be cooked in duck fat. This then made me think of defining confit for everyone who has seen/ heard of it, but never knew what the heck it was. Personally, confit doesn’t really interest me, because the thought of eating something cooked in its own fat is, well… not the most appetizing. However, I’ve seen it so frequently on menus at various restaurants, so someone important must love it! Go ahead, give it a shot, and let me know what you thought! btw, that awesome rhyme was so not intended, but I like it :)

P.S. it’s pronounced con-fee.

define: raclette

a swiss dish consisting of a chunk of raclette cheese that is exposed to heat (traditionally an open fire) and scraped off as it melts… comes from racler, french for “to scrape.” it’s served as a meal with boiled potatoes, dark bread and cornichons, or other pickled vegetables.

There’s no better time to enjoy this dish than in the autumn & winter months. Just like all the holiday decor, it, too, creates that cozy/ warm/ fuzzy feeling inside and truly satisfies any comfort food craving this time of year!

I decided to share this definition with you, because I just saw this awesome little raclette maker in Crate & Barrel’s holiday gift guide (which you’ll find on page 54!) It’s really such a simple concept, but so, so delicious! If you haven’t tried it before, I suggest you do so before the weather warms up again.

P.S. it’s pronounced rah-klet.