Epicurious Challenge Recipe: 61/138
We don't often cook with duck so when we saw this recipe, we headed to our regular grocery store, where they told us they don't sell duck. Turns out, they actually do. It was frozen, wrapped in white paper near the end by the turkey. I'm so glad we found it because we are both obsessed with this recipe.
This is by far the best pasta dish we've made this year. The sauce is so fantastic, I would eat it every day if I could. The duck is tender and delicious. Colin, who is not a big fan of red sauce, is also in love with this recipe. If I can recommend you make one dish that we've ever made, do this one.
Epicurious Challenge Recipe: 61/138
I always love to break down a chicken and turn it into something tasty. This recipe involves chicken, pancetta, pearl onions, and all sorts of delicious elements that made this dish the star of a recent dinner party we hosted.
Overall, this dish is pretty easy to put together but a bit time consuming. This is because part of the process is cooking the onions then once cool, trimming and peeling the onions. These little suckers became so slippery and it took me about 10 minutes, if not longer, to trim and peel each one of these. Luckily, I had help from Colin part way through, which sped up the process.
We are very fortunate to have friends in our lives that let us cook new recipes for them, knowing that some may work, and some may not. This was one that worked! But it came with a side dish that did not (we'll be making it again before posting). Our friends ate everything anyway, and we love them for that.
Epicurious Challenge Recipe: 30/138
I found this recipe a while back and it has become a staple for an easy, tasty meal at home. When I first went shopping for this I was thrown off by the amount of sauces I had to buy, but now that we have them on hand, we find we use them in random recipes...and we always have them on hand to make this dish! It reheats well and is perfect to make on a Sunday night with leftovers for Monday's lunch!
I've been MIA in the kitchen recently so when we had a day off work, I decided it was time to put the apron back on and make something fun. I'd found this recipe a while ago and was pleasantly surprised how easy it was! In reality, all you have to do is cut a bunch of vegetables with minimal stove top cooking. Joanna used the leftover dough to make mini salted caramel hand pies that were delicious too!
While out and about, Colin talked about these amazing recipes he's had that included farro. So of course, we had to make one! Farro was not at our normal grocery store but you find it at Trader Joe's. You can also find it at Whole Foods, which is where this particular recipe comes from!
Whole Foods posted its nutritional information and one serving is 490 calories, which makes for a healthy and, I might add, delicious meal! And yes, it reheats perfectly for work lunches!
We are excited to be cooking unique and new-to-us ingredients! Check back as we continue our cooking adventures!
This recipe is sure to warm you up and distract those in cold areas of the country with great flavors. Risotto can be intimidating but I promise you it's very easy to make. Just be patient! It takes awhile to cook.
I love making risotto. It's one of the recipes I've had memorized for years. I have never made a butternut squash risotto, and actually, I'm not that familiar with cooking butternut squash. After googling the best way to prepare the squash, I decided to make risotto as normal, and add in a few extra goodies along the way.
The best thing about risotto opinion is that a basic recipe makes a large portion of food which can either serve a lot of hungry mouths or can turn into the best left-overs to eat at work!
Lunch on the go is always a difficult thing! This recipe for Asian-style chicken lettuce wraps is easy to make and still delicious when reheated. I've always loved the chicken lettuce wraps from P.F. Changs and wanted to see if we could figure out a way to make our own.
We had some Asian sauces on hand from when Colin made sesame chicken awhile ago and they really make this dish. Invest in these sauces! The rest of the recipe is very simple: roasted chicken, sauteed mushrooms, spicy mayo and lettuce!
After the jump we have photos of how we packed this lunch to go and how we ate it at work (with a side of edamame of course!).
We are big fans of Blue Apron - a company that sends you a box of portioned ingredients and recipes for 3 meals. All the ingredients are supplied except for salt, pepper, olive oil and water. It gives us an opportunity to try out new recipes and flavors that we normally would not try on our own.
The spice-rubbed pork medallions recipe was our favorite from the most recent box we had delivered. We loved the peach salsa and sauce on top of the pork.
Colin & Joanna
Here's the first of our meal planning recipes we prepared last Sunday. To use our time efficiently when preparing so many meals at once, I always try to mix up the appliances we use. Of the five meals we cooked, one used the oven, one used a slow cooker, two were on the stove, and one (the salad) was prepared on the counter.
The mushroom lasagna roll ups was the oven recipe. I found this via Pinterest and was intrigued by the photo alone. When I read the ingredients, I was sold! It comes from Closet Cooking, an adorable food blog who makes me feel better about cooking in such a small kitchen.
The recipe made 8 roll ups. We froze 4 pieces and ate the rest last week! It was really delicious, creamy and healthy! We made a few changes by using spinach instead of kale (we aren't huge kale fans - don't hate us!) and cremini mushrooms instead of white mushrooms. The original recipe link is at the bottom in case you prefer the other ingredients.
Avid readers have seen some recipes from our Sur la Table cooking classes and for those looking for one more, you got it! This was from our Date Night: Romantic Italy class and was so good, we made it for our friends when we hosted a joint birthday dinner.
Though this may sound complicated, the recipe is actually fairly simple and just takes some time and a careful eye. The class paired this main with a great salad that we'll include below!
My dad taught me a lot of things in life but the one most relevant to this blog post is how to cook amazing risotto! This is a very simple recipe that can be altered in numerous ways. Risotto is a great base and usually you can throw in whatever you have lying around the house. I know some people are intimidated by risotto, but please don't be. It's actually very easy to cook.
This recipe is from my dad so of course it involves a lot of Italian ingredients. Most importantly is the cheese. The cheese you use in risotto really affects the flavor, so don't be cheap. Shell out the big bucks for a brick of parmigiano-reggiano cheese and we promise, you will not regret it!
The second most important is the pancetta. We've found that most grocery stores that sell it, have diced the pancetta. That's great if you want a little bite of flavor, but not in this house! We found an Italian deli in Burbank called Monte Carlo, which cut our pancetta in 1/4 inch slices. Mmmm pancetta!
And please do not forget the golden rule: never cook with wine you won't drink. If it's not good enough to drink, don't cook with it.
Our friends know we love to take cooking classes so they know it makes a great gift. We received two gift certificates for our wedding to take a class at Eatz, an LA-based cooking school near our apartment.
Our teacher was the owner of the school and she provided us with a thoroughly entertaining night which produced a great menu of scrumptious food that we can't wait to duplicate over and over! We would highly recommend any LA chefs to take advantage of this amazing and fun class.
This was not only fun to cook (see the pics in the full post where Joanna is flambéing with a huge grin on her face!) but it was very delicious! We've replicated this for an easy weeknight meal and it was scrumptious. Knowing how to make a flavorful sauce for meat is always a good thing to have in your back pocket when steaks are on sale.
Colin & Joanna
We recently got an online deal to try out this site BlueApron.com and we really enjoyed our first experience. We love to cook (DUH) but we don't always have time to discover new recipes or shop for all the strange ingredients they may need. Blue Apron sends us a box once a week with all the ingredients, pre-portioned and ready to use, for three meals for two. It's that simple! The best part is we can skip a week if we don't have time or don't like the menu.
The recipe below is the first of this week's three recipes and we can't wait to try the others!
Colin & Joanna
A while ago I saw an article on Buzzfeed where they had eight chefs battle it out to see who had the best roast chicken recipe. The winner was Bouchon's own Thomas Keller and we figured if his chicken is half as good as his macaroons, then we were in for a treat! We've made it once before and decided to reprise the recipe for Easter. This raises the question: Which came first, the chicken or the Easter egg?
Turns out, not only was this fantastic, but it was inexpensive and really easy. Like really, really easy! Check out the original Buzzfeed article for some great gifs to teach you how to truss a chicken (I still use the link every time I make this!).