Cold Weather Camp Chili
Cold winter weather makes me crave deep, warm, rich foods like pot roast and hearty soups, so when I went camping in the Ozarks in the middle of winter I knew we’d need to make something substantial for dinner. As the temperatures dropped into the twenties I got my buddies to help prepare cast-iron cornbread and turkey chili with white beans and chili. This is hands down the simplest and most flavorful chili I’ve made in a very long time – perfect for any cold night whether you’re cozy at home or braving the great outdoors.
 
Read More (including the recipe) »

Cold Weather Camp Chili

Cold winter weather makes me crave deep, warm, rich foods like pot roast and hearty soups, so when I went camping in the Ozarks in the middle of winter I knew we’d need to make something substantial for dinner. As the temperatures dropped into the twenties I got my buddies to help prepare cast-iron cornbread and turkey chili with white beans and chili. This is hands down the simplest and most flavorful chili I’ve made in a very long time – perfect for any cold night whether you’re cozy at home or braving the great outdoors.

 

Read More (including the recipe) »

There’s nothing quite like crispy fried local organic chicken thighs with skin so flavorful and meat so juicy…it’s unlike any chicken you’ve ever tasted. That’s what we made tonight, from a new recipe in the June issue of Bon Appétit, and it was AWESOME accompanied with roasted new potatoes and mushrooms and chard sautéed with carrots and onions. And for a snack I made bruschetta with Cherokee Purple tomatoes from the garden and pesto I made with our basil.
Such treats!

There’s nothing quite like crispy fried local organic chicken thighs with skin so flavorful and meat so juicy…it’s unlike any chicken you’ve ever tasted. That’s what we made tonight, from a new recipe in the June issue of Bon Appétit, and it was AWESOME accompanied with roasted new potatoes and mushrooms and chard sautéed with carrots and onions. And for a snack I made bruschetta with Cherokee Purple tomatoes from the garden and pesto I made with our basil.

Such treats!

Thanksgiving is done but I’m still giving thanks, uploading these photos. We had an incredible Thanksgiving holiday! I wanted to show some photos as soon as I could, so here are my favorites from my friend (and incredible photographer) Josh Goleman, who was kind enough to take some snaps of the food while I cooked up the storm. Three days of intense preparation really paid off - we had the most amazing day with our friends! Thank you all!

Grass-Fed or Corn-Fed?

The difference between grass fed-beef and corn-fed beef is not only political! This cute and informational video illustrates the differences in a mini experiment I think we all should try. I’m not a beef-eater myself, but as I become more curious to try it I believe I would definitely opt for grass-fed. After all, you can always tenderize it! (via NPR)

Sushi at home

sushi

We made sushi together for the first time the other night. I felt like I needed some fresh in my life (with all this snow around) and there’s a spot in my tummy only sushi can fill. I find it incredible that I can purchase everything I need to make sushi (including fresh fish) within literally 15 yards of my regular route home. Is this the cultural melting pot I’ve heard of for so many years? Or is it just a result of working in Center City? Either way, making sushi at home really isn’t very difficult. Ryan said he’d hesitated because he assumed it would be a prolonged effort with lots of work and mess…but it wasn’t. And sushi for two (plus california rolls for lunch) cost a mere $18. Way cheaper than going out, plus it’s definitely an experience.

Like I said, this is an amazingly simple process—but there is a trade off. As a result of cooking times being minimal there is a lot of prep work. Slicing carrots, beans, cucumber, avocado, mushrooms, fish, and anything else you choose to use takes a little while, then of course rolling the sashimi takes some practice.

sushi

Tuna and Avocado Rolls with Carrots and Cucumber

What you’ll need:

a sushi rolling mat, rice paddle, and a sharp knife

1/3 lb fresh ahi tuna (make sure to ask the fishmonger if it’s fresh enough to eat raw)

1 bag of toasted seaweed sheets (about 5)

1 avocado

1/2 medium cucumber

1/2 medium carrot

1 1/2 cups white sushi or jasmine rice

3 tpsb rice vinegar

pinch of salt

1. In a medium pan, bring 2 1/2 cups water and rice to a boil. Cover, turn down to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Allow to rest, covered, for 10 minutes, then add rice vinegar and salt and mix to combine.

2. Meanwhile, julienne the carrots and cucumber and slice the avocado into thin c-shapes. Slice the tuna into 1/2 inch wide strips.

3. Fill a small dish with warm water to dip your fingers in so they don’t become stuck to the rice. Then place one leaf of the seaweed on the sushi rolling mat and spread an even amount of rice onto it using your moistened fingers, about 1/4 inch thick, making sure to leave a little less than an inch-high strip of seaweed exposed at the bottom (to make the roll stick together).

4. Evenly distribute the ingredients across the middle of the rice, creating a long pile from one side of the rice-covered seaweed to the other, making sure a bit of carrot sticks out at both ends.

5. Moisten the exposed end of seaweed with dabs of water. Using the rolling mat, pull the far edge of seaweed toward you and begin to tuck it into the rice to make a roll. Continue rolling toward you with light pressure until the ingredients are completely rolled up and press the damp seaweed against the roll to form a seal.

6. Slice the rolls into six even pieces using a damp chefs’ knife and plate.

sushi

In addition to this recipe I also made more traditional sushi—just balls of rice with tuna on top, as well as California rolls. On the side I made a warm salad of sautéed snow peas and enoki mushrooms in toasted sesame oil. Delicious! See more photos of the process here.