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Instant Pot BBQ Ribs If you’ve ever made BBQ ribs before, you know it can be a long process if you want fall off the bone, melt in your mouth, meat.  Thanks to Instant Pot, you can shave 4-5 hours off this process now!  Using the pressure cooking component of the Instant Pot, you can pressure cook your ribs for 30 minutes and get the same effect you would have if you had slow cooked your ribs in the oven for 4 hours.  I seasoned my ribs with a dry rub, and refrigerated
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Bourbon & Rosemary?

18 February, 2014, 0 comments, on

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I cozied up in my apartment on a winter’s eve and watched the snow begin to fall.  I decided to celebrate the possibility that I may be stranded at home tomorrow and whip up a little after dinner drink for my roommate and I. 

The new bottle of Bulleit Bourbon on my shelf was begging to be used!  Be sure to visit www.bulleit.com for a more details about this small batch bourbon.  New to the bourbon world, I had been drawn to this particular bottle for two reasons; first because we serve Bulleit at many of our Drink.Eat.Relax events, and second because the website describes it as “Medium amber in color, with gentle spiciness and sweet oak aromas. Mid-palate is smooth with tones of maple, oak, and nutmeg. Finish is long, dry, and satiny with a light toffee flavor.”  Who could ask for more right?

recipe, bourbon, rosemary

Now what to mix it with?  A quick scan of my refrigerator revealed half an orange and some rosemary.  I whipped up some Rosemary simple syrup.  You simply combine equal parts water and sugar in a saucepan and heat until the sugar dissolves.  Once the sugar had dissolved I dropped in my rosemary sprigs, covered the saucepan, and let it steep for 30 minutes.  If you want a stronger rosemary flavor, you can simply leave the rosemary in the syrup for a longer period of time. 

recipe, bourbon, rosemary

Now that the rosemary simple syrup had cooled it was time to beginning crafting this cocktail!  I poured 2 oz of the Bulleit into the cocktail shaker, along with ¾ oz of the simple syrup, juice from ½ of an orange, and ¾ oz Triple Sec.  Now as a single gal with not quite a full bar, Triple Sec was what I had on hand, had I a full bar at my disposal I would have opted for Cointreau or the mother of all orange liquors, Grand Marnier!  Alas, the triple sec would have to suffice.  I commenced to shaking the cocktail experiment over ice.  I strained the cocktail into a coupe  glass.  You could really serve it in whatever you like, but as a lady of refined and rather old fashioned taste, I am always attracted to the coupe bar glass for its elegance.

recipe, bourbon, rosemary

It was love at first sip!  The bourbon combined with the orange and rosemary flavors produced a drink that was complex and warm.  Perfect for a winter’s eve while watching the snow fall.  Now to come up with a name for this cocktail!  Please submit your suggestions.  Enjoy!

bourbon, rosemary, recipe

recipe bourbon rosemary

-Emily

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When life gives you lemons…make chocolate chip scones?

12 February, 2014, 0 comments, on

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It was a cold January morning and I was about to embark on a long work weekend in NYC with my coworkers.  The idea of starting the day off with a bowl full of porridge did not sound appetizing, so I decided to treat myself, and hopefully spread a little food love to everyone by making chocolate chip scones!

I have fallen in love with this recipe because of the dense yet soft consistency and the bright flavor the lemon zest adds while keeping them from being overly sweet.  This recipe can also be nicely adjusted by substituting a fruit of your choice in place of the chocolate chips, but chocolate chips is what I was craving!

recipe, scones, chocolate chip

I combined my dry ingredients and grated the lemon zest directly into the bowl, and then whisked together.

recipe, scones, step one

After this I added the chocolate chips. Next came one of the most important steps, as it is also in my humble opinion one of the most important ingredients . . .the butter! Incorporation of the butter is very important. Chunks of butter that are too large are problematic because it causes inconsistency in the texture, too finely cut up and the scones will come out a bit dry and on the tougher side.  I cut the butter in cubes and then used my finger tips to crumble them even more.  Now I added the buttermilk, which had been premixed with the egg and the vanilla extract. 

I used a fork and just mixed until the ingredients barely held together.  

scones mixed recipe

I delicately formed the dough into a dome before cutting it into pieces.  It is very important not to overwork the dough as this will lead to a tough scone.

After I cut them into pieces I brushed them with some buttermilk and sprinkled them with raw sugar, and they were oven ready! I baked them for about 15 minutes at 350.

scones

Twenty minutes of painless effort resulted in beautiful, dense yet soft scones.  Hot from the oven they were delicious.  Fourteen hours later after a long day at work, they were the perfect pre bed snack in the hotel room to soothe the taste buds and soul!  Enjoy with a cup of coffee or hot cocoa.

scones, recipe

- Emily

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Chick-fil-a on Sunday? The Nugget Copy-Kat (see what I did there?) Recipe

4 February, 2014, 0 comments, on

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chick-fil-a logo
We’ve all been there… craving nothing other than the delicious, golden morsels of Chick-fil-a nuggets that may also be what Heaven tastes like if it was edible. Your mind is set to trek to the local joint only to realize… IT’S SUNDAY?!?! (enter expletive here)

Thanks to my research and kitchen experiment, YOU can now enjoy “Chicken Heaven” on Sunday in the comfort of your own pjs.

Ingredients:
2 eggs
1 cup of milk
1 cup of pickle juice
3-4 skinless and boneless chicken breasts
1 ¼  cup of flour
2 tbsp powdered sugar
1 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp garlic salt
1 tbsp pepper
1-2 cups peanut oil (however much you need so it’s at least an inch high in your skillet)

Instructions:
1. Cube the chicken into equal nugget size pieces and put into a large bowl. Pour the pickle juice over your chicken and pop in the fridge for an hour.

chicken, recipe, chick-fil-a, pickled chicken

marinated chicken

2. Whisk together your two eggs and milk in a bowl and set aside. On a deep plate, combine the dry ingredients making sure it’s well mixed. Heat up your peanut oil in a skillet on medium high.

mixing chicken eggs

3. Drain the pickle juice from the chicken and start the assembly line of: egg/milk wash, flour coating (be liberal) and dropping into the oil. Cook the nuggets on each side for 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Rest the chicken on a paper towel lined plate to soak up the unnecessary oil. (A moment on the lips is an eternity on the hips)

pan frying chicken

4. ENJOY!

final fryed chicken, chick-fil-a recipe

My only criticism is the nuggets aren’t as crispy as the original but the taste is on point. I’m assuming if you have a deep fryer in your arsenal, you will have an exact replica of the nuggets. You could also potentially kick your oil up on high… I was scared to test that out as I don’t have a fire extinguisher.

XO : Kat

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5 Ridiculous Eats We're Craving For Super Bowl

28 January, 2014, 0 comments, on

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Super Bowl is coming. This Sunday if you aren't one of the lucky 79,000 ticket holders chances are you're hosting a Super Bowl viewing party, or attending one. If you're like us - you'll be eating and drinking and of course relaxing...

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The Ultimate No Bake Dessert – Dirt Cake

13 January, 2014, 0 comments, on

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Now I know what you’re thinking “Dirt Cake? I used to eat that all the time when I was a kid.” But this dessert is so tasty people of all ages love it and it helps to bring back those awesome childhood memories.

This past Saturday my friends and I were getting together for a night of playing cards and just hanging out so we decided we would order pizzas for dinner and I thought I would surprise my crew with this easy to fix tasty dessert!

I followed the basic guidelines given from the recipe online from AllRecipes.com for Dirt Cake

Here is what you’re going to need:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
2 (3.5 ounce) packages instant vanilla pudding mix
3 1/2 cups milk
1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping
32 ounces chocolate sandwich cookies with crème filling  a.k.a. OREOS!
1 Medium & 1 Large Mixing Bowl
Serving Bowl
Mixer/Beater
Gummy Worms (optional – but a huge hit )

As far as the ingredients go I tweaked a few things including the container of frozen whipped topping. This recipe calls for 12 oz. container but all I could find were 8 oz. and 16 oz. containers at the store. So rather than portioning it out I just used all 16 ounces because who doesn’t love whipped topping. It added a little more creaminess to the recipe and worked just fine!

I also didn’t measure out 32 ounces of chocolate sandwich cookies. I just used an entire package of Oreos. I think I would have been better off had a used two packages though as I needed more Oreo topping for the very top of the dessert which I didn’t have.

Once you have all your ingredients together we can get started. First thing you want to do is take the butter and cream cheese out of the fridge and let them soften for a few minutes before you begin. This will make the mixing process much easier. 

Next thing I did was to put the Oreo’s into a freezer bag.

I then grabbed my trusty meat tenderizing mallet to give those cookies a whack. The “All Recipes” way is to put them in a food processor but since I do not own one of those the good ole meat mallet will have to do. I find that this way leaves some larger chunks of the cookies in the final product but still tastes just great. My friends said they liked the chunks of cookie so it all worked out great!

Next step is to put the Cream Cheese, Butter, and Confectioners’ Sugar in a medium size mixing bowl. 

Then using your trusty mixer go to town on this combo until it is nice and smoothly mixed. I just got this brand new mixer for Christmas from my mother and was very excited to put it to the test. 

It worked great. It also has different mixing blades you can use for various recipes and comes in a storage case for an easy way to put it away in my pantry.

After the first 3 items are mixed you will want to pull out a large mixing bowl. Here you will combine the Milk, Pudding packets, and the whipped topping. 

Since the whipped topping was still a little frozen I used a spoon to scoop it out in smaller chunks so that my mixer would have as tough a time. From here be sure to mix this grouping up really good. It will become that nice color that vanilla pudding has.

Now that both bowls are fully mixed it’s time to mix them together. Pour the ingredients from the medium size mixing bowl into the large and begin to mix again.

Now the most important task after mixing both bowls together is to take off the beaters and be sure to give them a really good lick. Then be sure to control yourself and finish out the recipe because most likely you are just going to want to grab a spoon and dig in right away.

You will now want to get out the serving dish you wish to store the final product. I chose this clear glass bowl so that you can really see the layers. First put down a layer of the cream mix.

Then put down a layer of dirt mix. Since my “dirt” wasn’t as fine as if it had been from a food processor I chose to use my hands to crumble the cookies a little more as I put the layer down.

Repeat, repeat, repeat, until you have all the layers complete. I like to do my layers pretty thin that way when you take a scoop you always get multiple layers.

Toss in the fridge and let chill until you are ready to serve.

Since a few of my friends have kids that were going to be around for our night of cards I decided to toss in the worms for a special treat for them. Turns out this was the best idea I had because all of the adults went crazy for the worms, even more so than the kids.



Hope you enjoy this really simple and hugely successful no bake dessert.

PS. Dirt Cake is not only good for dessert but also for breakfast the next morning. We know it’s not healthy but we couldn’t resist have this treat in the morning too!

-Sara

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