Tag Archives: recipe

French Dip Feast

14 Apr

On Sunday, while my husband was out for most of the day, he texted me, “Feast?”

Who am I to deny him a feast.

We all define feast in our own way. This is one of my many definitions.

French Dip

Since I was home all day doing things around the apartment, I made a minimal work, optimal flavor feast — French Dip sandwiches.

I used Pioneer Woman’s recipe for Drip Beef. It starts with melted butter and onions browned in the pot. On top, throw on your chuck roast. I fit as much as I could in a single layer in the pot. It was about 3.5 pounds of meat — a true feast size.


Then throw in your flavoring — 1/2 cup of soy sauce, 2 cups of water, and 2 cups of chicken broth (Pioneer Woman uses sherry). Plus some salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme, oregano, plus whatever you like.

French Dip

Turn the heat to very low.

Go tidy up your apartment, read through your mail that you haven’t opened for the past month, call your bank, watch Superman on HBO Go, etc. You know the drill.

Let it sit for 6 hours.

French Dip

Take a peak every now and then. Inhale the beef-y aroma.

French Dip

After 6 hours, fish out your beef and shred it using two forks. Then place it back into the broth.

French Dip

Prepare your bread. Place a nice layer of Pepper Jack cheese on the bread and pop it into the toaster. Get the bread nice and toasty and the cheese nice and melty.

French Dip

Pile it up with the shredded beef and onions.

French Dip

Big sandwich. You might need to cut it in half.

French Dip

Serve each sandwich with a small bowl of the broth for a dippin’.

French Dip

Here we go. Feast away.

French Dip



Kale Pesto Pizza

13 Feb

Oh man, this was a good pizza.

Kale Pesto Pizza

My sister-in-law bought a ton of kale and gave me a bunch. I made pesto out of it and plopped the pesto on a pizza with tomatoes and fresh mozz. Oh man, I wish I was eating this pizza right now.

First, make your pizza dough. I like Pioneer Woman’s dough – it’s easy and doesn’t need a lot of ingredients (1 tsp yeast, 4 cups flour, 1 tsp salt, 1/3 cup olive oil).

Pizza Dough

While the dough is rising, make your pesto:

Ingredients needed: 1 bunch kale, 2 medium-sized onions, 6-7 cloves of garlic, 3 tbsp olive oil, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, 1 tsp red pepper, salt and pepper.

With a little olive oil in the pan, saute the chopped onions and garlic (through the garlic press) for five minutes until onions are soft.

Onions and Garlic

Add kale (de-stemmed and chopped). Cook it down for three minutes.


Put your onion-kale-garlic mixture into the blender, add olive oil, parmesan cheese, red pepper, and salt and pepper to taste. Blend.

Kale Pesto

Once your dough has risen, roll it out into a pizza shape. Spread your pesto on top, spread out a layer of fresh mozzarella, and then place thinly-cut tomato slices on top.

Kale Pesto

Kale Pesto Pizza

Bake at 500 degrees for 10-12 minutes.

Kale Pesto Pizza

Kale Pesto Pizza

Kale Pesto Pizza

Oh man, that was good pesto.

Some music for Valentine’s Day:

Holiday Baklava

30 Dec

A little late, but Happy Holidays!

Since our holiday decorations are meager, here’s a picture in front of the Christmas tree in Atlantis from our pre-holidays cruise.

Happy Holidays

Our holidays were fun and filled with family.

For our family gatherings, we brought baklava. We made baklava from How Sweet It Is that I had pinned a while ago.

My husband helped me make this, probably reducing the amount of time it took to make by half since one of us could deal with the phyllo sheets and the other could brush on the butter.

It didn’t take as much time as you’d think, and totally, completely worth the work.

It was crazy good.




Carrot Cupcakes

23 Oct

One of my resolutions this year was to read more books.

It hasn’t been going well. And although I know it’s not going well, I feel too lazy to get moving on this.

Carrot Cupcakes

So instead, I’ve made the argument in my head that listening to podcasts is, in some aspects, similar enough to reading a book. (I know this isn’t even close to true, but don’t tell me that.)

Carrot Cupcakes Recipe


So I set up my iPod to subscribe to a bunch of podcasts.

But I’m really not a great listener. In meetings, I will accidentally zone out and subsequently panic that I have no idea what everyone else in the meeting was talking about for the past five minutes.

Mixing the batter

Carrot Cupcakes

Anyway, the best podcast that I’ve listened to so far is the Dinner Party Download. The premise of the podcast is that it prepares you to “win” your next dinner party, which means that the hosts, along with their guests, give you some ideas for small talk, a cocktail recipe, etiquette tips, news/stories, and a music playlist.

Making the Cream Cheese Frosting


One of the cool stories from the podcast was about Jane Fonda. How after conquering fashion, modeling, and acting, she went on to conquer fitness. She got into aerobics, which was new at the time, opened her own aerobics studio, and published an aerobics workout book.

And then some guy who produced home improvement VHS tapes got inspired and asked Fonda to make an aerobics video. At that time, only 5% of homes had a VCR to watch VHS tapes.

He thought a few people would buy the workout video, but he was wrong, millions of people bought it. And that sparked millions of homes to buy VCRs, arguably starting the home video boom.

Carrot Cupcake

Pretty interesting, right?

If you agree, give the Dinner Party Download a listen while you make these delicious Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting from Martha Stewart. And then share them with your dinner party guests (or eat them all yourself while pretending to read).

Carrot Cupcakes

Ginger Chicken Rice

25 Sep

Another ricepe… My last “ricepe” (rice+recipe) was from my mom, this one is from my sister-in-law – ginger chicken rice.

This dish is so simple, but needs a night to marinate, making for an easy post-work dinner. (Don’t make this if you are salt-averse.)

Ginger Chicken Rice


– 2.5 cups of rice
– 1.5 tsp of salt
– 5 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
– big piece of ginger
– bunch of scallions


1. Wash your chicken, and cut it up into small, bite-size pieces. (Small pieces will allow it to properly cook.)

2. Dice up your ginger. The more ginger, the better!


3. Add the salt and diced ginger in with the chicken. Thoroughly mix. Sit it in your fridge to marinate for one day.

Marinated chicken

4. The next day, wash your rice and set it up with the water in your rice cooker as normal.

5. Drop your marinated chicken into the rice cooker. Let the chicken sit on top of the rice. Make sure it is all submerged in the water, and set your rice cooker to cook like normal.

Ginger Chicken Rice in the rice cooker

6. Slice up your scallions.

7. Once the rice cooker dings that it is done, drop in your scallions, and mix the chicken, ginger, scallions, and rice together, scoop it out, and serve with some veggies.

Ginger Chicken Rice - adding the scallions

8. Enjoy.

Ginger Chicken Rice

Easy & Delicious Corn Rice

29 Aug

When my parents were dating, my dad used to take my mom back home on the subway after they’d go out. He would ride with her to where her family lived in Brooklyn, walk her to her door, then turn around, and get back on the subway to go home. He’d fall asleep on the subway and wake up at a subway stop way past where he lived.

My mom would do really nice things for my dad too. Like make him awesome dinners. One of her specialties was corn rice and chicken.

Corn Rice - ingredients

When I started cooking more often after graduating from college, my mom suggested this dish to me because it’s easy and delicious.

Years after she first told me how to make it, I still love this dish, especially the corn rice. The corn rice makes a cameo in many of my dinners, not just with my mom’s accompanying breaded and spiced drumsticks cooked on the stovetop.

This rice is delicious and so unbelievably easy. The rice is made almost the same way you would normally make rice, for me that is in a rice cooker.

Corn Rice

First, wash the rice. I make about 2.5 cups at a time so we have lots of leftovers.

Add your water. You can measure how much water you need by sticking your middle finger in the water so the tip is touching the top of the rice, and filling with water up to the first line on your finger (about 1/3 the length of your finger).

Then sprinkle in some chicken bouillon. For 2.5 cups of rice, I added approx 4 teaspoons to get it nice and flavorful.

Corn Rice - adding bouillion

Close the rice cooker and set it to cook.

Once the rice cooker dings, strain a can of whole kernel corn and add it to your cooked rice. Mix it up really well to get the bouillon flavor and corn evenly mixed throughout. After it is thoroughly mixed, close the rice cooker back up for a few minutes so the corn can heat up.

Corn Rice - adding the corn

Done. Hardly any effort. Scoop it up and serve with your favorite dishes.

Corn Rice - mix it up

It tastes delicious with my new go-to chicken recipe – Crispy and Spicy Lemon Chicken Thighs (good with skinless chicken too! – just not as crispy), stir fried bok choy with garlic, and slivers of raw radishes.

Corn Rice meal

Corn Rice meal

Please note that my mom highly recommends sticking to her original breaded and spiced drumsticks and mixing it in with the rice so you get even more flavor from the chicken.

Go Go Gravlax

14 Jan

I have a subscription to Everyday with Rachael Ray Magazine. I ordered it for free for one year.

It is the best free magazine I’ve ever received, wherein I discovered that you and I can make gravlax at home. It never occurred to me that this sashimi-like salmon (which we usually eat at Ikea) could easily be made at home.


Rachael Ray shared this recipe for Clementine Gravlax.

While hers looked good, I didn’t really want a clementine flavor, so instead I made my own. It was delicious, as my husband can attest.


2 lb salmon fillet (with skin on one side)
1/3 cup salt
1/3 cup sugar
3 tbsp dill weed
3 tbsp pepper


1. Clean your salmon and take out any bones. Pat dry. (I cut my salmon in half so it’d be easier to work with.)


2. Mix together salt, sugar, dill weed and pepper.


3. Place salmon skin-side down in the center of a large piece of saran wrap.

4. Spread salt mixture over the salmon, being sure to cover it all. Use the entire mixture.


5. Wrap the salmon tightly in the saran. If needed, use additional saran to wrap it additional times.


6. Place wrapped salmon in a baking tray. Place another baking tray the same size on top of the salmon. Put it in your fridge with books/weights on top of the trays to weigh it down.


7. Flip your salmon over every 12 hours.

8. After 48-hours in the fridge, the salmon is done curing. Unwrap it, and rinse off the salt mixture. Cut off thin slices (discarding the skin) and serve as desired.



I served ours on toasted torta bread with red onion, tomato, lettuce, a few slices of lemon and a Dill Horseradish sauce.


I made the Dill Horseradish sauce by mixing 2 tbsp horseradish sauce, juice of 1/2 lemon, 1 tbsp dijon/brown mustard, 1/4 tsp pepper and 1/2 tsp dill weed.