Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Summer Brussel Sprout Panzanella

The summer produce in San Francisco is phenomenal. I have mentioned before how I love farmer's markets. I will miss them here but I am looking forward to enjoying what North Carolina has to offer. 

Inspired by some great seasonal produce, I decided to combine apricots, brussel sprouts, red onions, and left-over multigrain loaf to make a summery, light bread salad, known in Italy as a Panzanella. 

Summer Brussel Sprout Panzanella


1/2 red onion, chopped
1-2 tbsp white wine
1 cup brussell sprouts, chopped
3 small apricots, sliced

Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp olive oil
merquen seasoning or garlic-onion powder (optional)

olive oil spray


1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Spray sheet pan with olive oil. Lay apricots and brussel sprouts flat. Roast in the oven for 10-15 min until browned on sides (turn mid-way to brown on each side).
2. Slice multigrain loaf and toast twice to brown on all sides. Chop into cubes.
3. Meanwhile, saute chopped red onions with white wine in a small pan, sprayed with olive oil, until browned or caramelized.
4. Mix the roasted brussel sprouts with the caramelized onions, apricots, and toasted bread cubes.
5. Prepare vinaigarette in small bowl, whisking together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, and seasoning.
6. Add vinaigarette to panzanella (bread salad) before serving. 

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Spicy White Bean Chili

I recently made a chili for a group of friends. It turned out well so I decided to post the recipe without the picture. But believe me.... If you follow this rough recipe, even with a little extra of this or that, it will come out well. Chili, my friends, is forgiving. That is why I love it.

Spicy White Bean Chili


1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp malt vinegar
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tbsp barley syrup (I used) or molasses
1 tsp Adobo spice
1 jalapeno chopped with seeds
1 habanero (left intact and removed before serving)
2 cloves garlic, chopped

Base Ingredients:

2 cups water
1 can pinto beans
1/2 container of Great Northern Beans (Trader Joe's)
1/2 cup tomato sauce
2 small tomatoes, diced
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
1/2 red onion, chopped


(1) Spray a 2 quart pan with olive oil. Add chopped garlic and onions and saute until slightly brown on medium heat.
(2) Add the red and green bell peppers to the mixture. Saute for 3-5 minutes.
(3) Add the beans and tomato sauce to the pan, followed by the jalapeno. Saute for a 2-3 minutes. Add water, spices, malt vinegar, and apple cider vinegar. 
(4) After 30 minutes, lower the heat. Add the habanero and the small tomatoes. Simmer for 1 hour (basically forget about it). 
(5) Remove habanero and serve.

Always with chili, it tastes better after a few hours of letting the flavors meld. I like to make a day in advance but this tastes good right after making.

Either way, enjoy.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Taste test - Nature's Pride Harvest buns and rolls

On a recent trip to North Carolina (my last visit before I completely move there), I had an extra pleasant treat. As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I received Nature's Pride Premium Harvest buns & rolls. With some proscuitto and melon on hand, I decided to make a quick sandwich and test out both the texture and taste of the Whole Wheat Harvest buns. I was pleasantly surprised that the buns held up to the weight and juiciness of the melon but were also very mild in taste, not to overpower the protein on the bun.

The sandwich was an easy combination of cantelope, proscuitto, mixed salad greens, and dijon mustard. 

Did I mention how much I love the simplicity but also the taste complexity of a sandwich...

My fiancĂ© also recently made a delicious take on a burger: 

Spicy Turkey Burgers with Asparagus

The asparagus is mixed in with the beef. Let me know what combinations you come up with!