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Mango Spiced Quick Oats

It feels good to be back after a break of a few weeks without doing much cooking or writing.  For most of February and March I was caught up in ...

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Saborea Puerto Rico 2015

Earlier this week we talked about my five lessons for best enjoying Saborea Puerto Rico.  I’ll show you today why you shouldn’t miss the most important culinary showcase in the Caribbean. ...

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Five Lessons: Saborea Puerto Rico

The Saborea season is finally here!  Saborea Puerto Rico kicks off this next Thursday, April 9th, celebrating the best of Puerto Rican gastronomy and hospitality.  For the eighth consecutive year, ...

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Woo Me – A Valentine’s Day Menu

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Chunky Mojo Isleño

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Tuesdays with Dorie BCM: Granola Energy Bars

granola energy bars

Fig and Pecan Granola Energy Bars

I’ve liked granola bars for as long as I can remember.  Could it be the candy-like wrappers?  The combination of sweet and salty?  Their magic hunger killing powers when enjoyed with coffee, tea, water, soda?  They are so convenient I always have a box or two at home and at work.  Although I have made ‘loose’ granola at home before, this week’s Tuesdays with Dorie recipe, Granola Energy Bars, was my first time baking and slicing it into bars.  It won’t be the last.  No brand that I know of has come up with apricot macadamia or fig and pecan varieties.  And those are just the flavors I thought up with this week!

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How to Make Mofongo

how to make mofongo

Mofongo is of Puerto Rico’s signature dishes.  It can be found in every corner of the island, from the humblest cafeteria to white tablecloth establishments.  This mash is traditionally prepared with green plantains, garlic, pork cracklings, and olive oil.  Although versions that feature ripe plantain, yuca, breadfruit or some combination of these are becoming more popular, the classic version will always be green plantain.  Plantains were brought over from Africa during the 16th century and were a staple of the slaves’ diet.  The mofongo we know today evolved from fufú, a root vegetable mash also from African origin.

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French Fridays with Dorie: Caramel-Topped Semolina Cake

caramel topped semolina cake flan de farina

Today’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe is not the Caramel Topped Semolina Cake.  There’s a little more backstory as to why I chose not to make Arman’s Caviar in Aspic, but the gist of it is that it is not a recipe I can pull off for breakfast on the same day the post is due.  I’m happy there are a few more recipes I can rationalize preparing and serving before the sun is fully up.

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GF360˚ Top 5 Posts of 2014

top five posts 2014

Un año que viene y otro que se va…

I love putting together the now traditional GF360˚ top 5 new posts of each year.  For starters, it reinforces the kind of writing and experiences I want to continue having and sharing with all of you.  There is a lesson learned for each of these posts.

Drumroll please!  GF360˚ Top 5 posts of 2014 are… Read More…

Puerto Rican Christmas Recipe Roundup

Puerto Rico

I think I have quizzed you on this important fact.  What country celebrates the longest holiday season?

If you answered anything other than a rousing “Puerto Rico!”, click here for my original tutorial on Puerto Rican Christmas.  One sentence summary?  Puerto Rican Christmas stretches from the day after Thanksgiving to mid January.  That gives you plenty of time to enjoy the delicacies of the season, cleanse your palate from the overdose of lechón, arroz con gandules, and coconut sweets, and then do it all over again before it is time for la Calle San Sebastián.

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FFwD Christmas Card Exchange: Almond Toffee Bark

almond toffee bark

I just had E snooping over at my laptop screen, and he noticed that I abbreviated the ‘French Fridays’ into our shorthand FFwD for this post’s title.

“FFwD… its Freaky Friday!”

“Uh-huh.”

“Freaky Friday!”

“Okay!”

“Freeaky Friiiday!”

And then it hit me.  It WAS Freaky Friday with Doristas!

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Tuesdays with Dorie: Gingerbread Bûche de Noël

gingerbread buche de noel dorie greenspan

Buzzing Holidays!

Oh boy, am I frazzled!  Our holiday schedule kicked off last Saturday with a bang and at this point brunch with friends on Sunday is looking like the end of the rainbow.  We are lucky and blessed to have this whirlwind of activity, family and friends to spend this time of year.  I’m also thankful for this recipe – labor intensive for sure – but oh so delicious.  Baking Chez Moi’s Gingerbread Bûche de Noël, our pick this week for Tuesdays with Dorie, was the perfect way to cap our holiday dinner with our in-laws last Sunday.  A soft, spongy gingerbread cake is rolled with a cream cheese and candied pecan filling and frosted with soft vanilla flavored meringue.  Read More…

French Fridays with Dorie: Orange and Olive Salad

Orange Olive Salad

A New Years Resolution

Christmas is not here yet, and I’m already thinking of New Years’ resolutions.  Food resolutions, that is.  Although I try to eat well at least 70% of the time, I know I still need to increase the amount of fruits in my diet.  I’ve already figured out a way to do it.

No more boring fruit salads.

Nothing totally against you, good old mix of cantaloupe, honeydew, pineapple and the odd strawberry or grape in the buffet or plastic container at the supermarket.  Just think how much better you would be with a pinch of salt, little dressing, a sprinkling of herbs, or the crisp bite of red onion. Read More…

Great Food Reads: Provence, 1970

Provence, 1970

Provence, 1970: M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, James Beard, and the Reinvention of American Taste is a non fiction account compiled by Luke Barr, the grand-nephew of iconic food writer MFK Fisher, of a series of meetings and correspondence between some of the most influential food people of the time.  The setting?  The Provence region in southeastern France – a counterpart to the burgeoning Northern California food scene. Much of the book is written from M.F.K. Fisher’s perspective, based on her journals and exchanges with these food personalities. Read More…

Puerto Rican Roast Chicken

Puerto Rican Style Roast Chicken

Last week, after a late night at the office, I found myself scrambling to get to the supermarket on time to grab a rotisserie chicken.  At one of the grocery stores I shop at, if you get there after 8pm chances are you’ll find the chickens no one wanted – if you are lucky.  Burnt wings, torn skin, just sad looking chickens that have been sitting around for a while.  Although everyone needs a good standby place to go grab one, many publications and renowned chefs agree that learning to roast a chicken is an essential kitchen skill. Read More…

French Weekends with Dorie: Lamb and Apricot Tagine

lamb and apricot tagine

This week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe, Lamb and Apricot Tagine, combines seared lamb chunks with a sweet and sour spiced sauce.  Inspired by Moroccan tagines, I cooked the lamb in an onion and tomato based sauce in a Dutch oven for an hour.  The result: a fragrant dish with plenty of sauce and onion chunks to sop up with white rice. Read More…

Tuesdays with Dorie: The Rugelach that Won Over France

Rugelach that Won over France

Today’s Tuesdays with Dorie: Baking Chez Moi recipe, the Rugelach that Won over France, is a soft cookie filled with a mixture of nuts, cherries, and semi sweet chocolate.  While the main ingredient in Dorie’s original recipe is coconut, I had plenty of nuts that needed to be used.  My version combines the chocolate and cherries with  walnuts, pecans, and a bit of coconut oil for a nuttier version. Read More…

French Fridays with Dorie: Tartine de Coppa

Tartine de Coppa

French Fridays for Les Paresseux

Right after you return from a trip, you want things to go easy… to run smoothly so you can hold on to that vacation glow.  I won’t say my happy vacation glow is gone, but it has faded.  Much like a tan that starts as a red sunburn and mellows into a lightly bronzed look, I’ve been catching up with routines and a flurry of activity at the office while basking in the memories of our days in Washington DC and Cambridge.  This week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe, the Tartine de Viande des Grison was the perfect recipe to come back home to.    A tartine is a French open-faced sandwich, or as our fellow Dorista Trevor likes to remind us, stuff on toast.  The Viande des Grison – also known as Bündnerfleisch – is an air-dried beef cold cut of Swiss origin.   What a good recipe to “rest with” after the Thanksgiving kitchen acrobatics many of us did during the holiday weekend! Read More…

Mofongo Mashing

Necessity is the mother of invention.  Or at least of managing your kitchen with what you have.

While mortars and pestles – pilones as they are known in Spanish – are essential kitchen equipment, sometimes even your best meaning friends do not have one in their house when those cravings for mofongo hit.  Mofongo – one of Puerto Rico’s signature dishes – consists of fried plantain chunks that are smashed with fresh garlic, olive oil, a little bit of chicken stock, and crackly pork rinds or bacon. Read More…

French Friday with Dorie: Desserts with a French Accent

dorie greenspan smithsonian

I will be upfront: I made the bonne idee for this week’s French Fridays with Dorie selection, Beatrix’s Red Kuri soup.  Instead of making soup with red kuri squash, I used the suggested cubed butternut squash and chestnuts substitution. I didn’t care much for the soup.  In hindsight, it could have used a punch of spice because otherwise, it felt like pumpkin-peanut butter soup.  I wish I had tried the real thing, though.

But I did have a wonderful, true French Friday with Dorie Greenspan last week.

We spent almost a week in DC, taking in all the history, culture and great food we were able to handle.  One of the highlights of our visit was coinciding with a Baking Chez Moi event sponsored by the Smithsonian Associates – Desserts with a French Accent.  Joe Yonan, food and travel editor for the Washington Post, interviewed Dorie for about an hour.  Having listened to her keynote address at last year’s IFBC and some her most recent podcast interviews (thanks to Betsy and Teresa), I was especially happy when the following the following tidbits surfaced during the talk: Read More…

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