9/26/16

Meatless Monday: Vegetarian Sandwich With New Sabra Spreads

Back in August Sabra invited me to come back to Richmond for the hummus factory tour, to check out their renovated kitchen, meet some of the other SabraTastemakers and learn about the newest product in their line up.

Spreads! 

Yes, now you can squeeze out hummus directly onto your sandwiches. I'm not saying I'll forego mayonnaise forever, but these Sabra Spreads are a great alternative. First, they come in 3 fun flavors. My favorite is Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper. The other two flavors are Garlic Herb, which is great in egg salad or tuna sandwiches, and Honey Mustard, which reminds me of my days of working at KFC when I was in High School.

Not only are these spreads vegan, kosher, gluten free and non-dairy, but they also have zero cholesterol and contain 75% less fat than mayonnaise. If you are watching your weight, or if you simply like delicious food, you'll love these.

To feature my favorite Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper Sabra Spread, I made a Vegetarian Sandwich. I hope you will check out Sabra's new spreads and create your own sandwiches with them!

Disclosure: Sabra provided samples and compensation for the recipe development, but all opinions are my own. Make sure to check out other recipes I developed using Sabra products!


Vegetarian Sandwich With New Sabra Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper Spread
Ingredients for 1 sandwich
2 wholewheat slices of bread, toasted
1-2 tablespoons Sea Salt & Cracked Pepper Sabra Spread
1/2 roasted pepper, sliced
1 layer pickled fennel
1 layer pickled red onion
2 slices Muenster cheese
2 slices lettuce

Directions
1. Build your sandwich. Slice in half. Eat.


If you are looking for these spreads in your store, you'll find them in the deli section. Of course you can also squeeze out the hummus based spreads for dipping your vegetables or chips!


Learn more at Sabra and go make a sandwich!

9/23/16

TGIF: Happy First Weekend of Fall


Raise your hand if you are ready for the weekend! I'm raising both of mine. I am! Trust me.

I'm ready for cooler weather, gathering with friends for pho and brunch (two separate days), covering the greys with henna (oh the joys of being a girl), napping and sleeping better, dancing, and doing a bit of cooking.

Find whimsy in unexpected places. That's my challenge for you for this weekend. Last week I found a little fennel heart in the jar of pickled fennel I made. Adorable, yes?


And if you are looking for a great brunch, make fried rice with defrosted peas, kimchi, any sort of meat and a fried egg. And make sure not to overcook the egg like I did. No one is perfect.


9/21/16

AmazonFresh in Northern VA and MD: The Grocery Store at Your Doorsteps

If you know me, you know that 1) I have little patience 2) I like things that are incredibly convenient 3) I believe time is money.

Perhaps that's why I've been an Amazon Prime member for several years. Yes, there's a fee, but it allows you to get free shipping and handling on many items. Need a last minute gift? You got it! Need a box of toilet paper and don't have a car and don't want to schlep it? No problem: order it on line. Plus, there's music, Transparent, and Catastrophe!

Last week, thanks to a gift card from Amazon, I was able to try out AmazonFresh. If you live in Northern Virginia or Maryland, you can now order pretty much anything you'd normally buy at a grocery store from the convenience of your own home and have it delivered the same day to your door or choose a date in the near future! You can either pay a monthly fee of $14.99 {in addition to your Amazon Prime membership} or try it for one month for free and see what you think.

Here's why this is great:
1) you don't have a car and are sick of carrying groceries by hand
2) you are sick and don't want to bother friends to bring you soup, milk and bread
3) you are coming home after a long vacation and want to have a few necessities and fresh produce waiting for you when you fly in

In fact, you can order everything from fresh meat and seafood, to frozen pizza, baked goods, dairy, pet supplies and beauty products!


When figuring out what to order, here are the things that I thought about:

1) I wanted to order fresh produce to check out the quality and freshness
2) I wanted to be a bit reckless and order fresh fish!!!
3) To make sure to get enough for $40 minimum to qualify for free delivery, I ordered a large container of detergent and a few random things.

My thoughts
1) The ordering process was incredibly easy. You can use preset categories to search for specific items or type in what you want in the search box.
2) AmazonFresh did a lovely job of suggesting extra items you may want to add to your order. For example, when I selected Atlantic Cod, I was asked if I'd like to also buy a lemon and parsley.
3) If you are into organic produce and products, you will find a wide selection of such items on AmazonFresh.
4) The prices were comparable to what I would pay otherwise at my grocery store.
5) I really liked the option of getting my order delivered for the 4-6pm "window." This allowed plenty of time to use the fish I ordered to make dinner!
6) You even have an option to order local products: in Northern VA this means Compass Coffee, Cake Love products, etc.

Basically, I'm a fan!!!

Disclosure: Amazon provided me with a gift card to try AmazonFresh service. All opinions are my own.

9/19/16

What To Do With Fennel: Pickle It! Cheater Pickled Fennel Recipe


Let's have a quick chat about fennel. I used to strongly dislike it, but then changed my mind and now love it in salads, soups, and even omelets!

When I was in Seattle, I had a salad made with zucchini, pesto and pickled fennel at Delancey and loved the texture and flavor of pickled fennel. It was bright, crunchy, and not as licorice'y as it tends to be normally.

When I came back to DC, I decided to make my own version of pickled fennel by reusing a pickling solution from store-bought vegetables I had in the fridge.


What To Do With Fennel: Pickle It! Cheater Pickled Fennel Recipe
Ingredients
1 fennel bulb, cored, thinly sliced
pinch of red pepper flakes
pickling liquid from store-bought pickles or other marinated vegetables

Directions
1. Fill a glass jar with sliced fennel and a pinch of red pepper flakes.
2. In a small pot bring to a simmer pickling liquid (you'll want enough to fill the jar of fennel).
3. Pour the simmering pickling liquid over the fennel and allow to cool before putting the jar in the refrigerator.
4. Allow a few days for the fennel to pickle. Use it in salads, sandwiches, or as a quick snack.


How do you like to eat fennel?

9/15/16

TBT: Where To Eat In Seattle AND A DIY Magnet Project

I'm back from Seattle. Technically, I've been back since Saturday night, but my jet lag is still strong and my body can't figure out which time zone it's in.

I wanted to share a few photos of a couple new and old places I went to while visiting family and friends in Seattle. Make sure to read/scroll all the way to the bottom of the post because there'll be a super easy DIY project waiting for you!

1. Kobe burger at The Butcher and The Baker. This was pretty spectacular. I skipped the bacon and ate the patty with a fork and a knife because there was no way this monstrosity was going to fit into my mouth. Juicy. Flavorful. Beyond filling. The kale slaw made me feel a bit better about eating so much meat, and I went for an hour walk around Green Lake after lunch.


2. Delancey: this was my second time at Delancey, and it did not disappoint. The short menu changes frequently, so choose whichever pizza sounds the best to you. I really liked that there was an option to choose two different combinations on one pizza.

Not to miss, if you go soon, is the summer squash salad with pickled fennel and pesto.



3. Jebena: Of course there are plenty of Ethiopian restaurants in DC, but I'm always up for having Ethiopian food. This place is small, but has a great menu with options for breakfast, and an incredibly warm and welcoming service.

Have you ever had foul? It's a dish of fava beans topped with tomatoes, onions, feta, chillies and eggs served with warm French Bread (on the left).


4. Bongos: Seattle's weather was perfect for an outdoor lunch at Bongos. The tables and chairs are placed directly into the sand on a large patio...you almost feel like you are in the Caribbeans!

Definitely make sure to get their fried plantains!




While at Bongos, I picked up a bunch of bottle caps and turned them into magnets by adding a magnet (with super glue) to the underside of the cap. How cute are these?


Where have you eaten lately?

9/12/16

Watermelon, Tomato & Nectarine Gazpacho Recipe: Easy as 1, 2, 3


Happy Monday! I'm back from Seattle, and the jet lag is for real!

Today I want to share with you an incredibly simple Meatless Monday gazpacho recipe I made before my trip to Seattle that's still quite appropriate as this summer heat is here to stay for at least one more week. Oy.

Watermelon, Tomato & Nectarine Gazpacho Recipe: Easy as 1, 2, 3
Ingredients
3 parts yellow seedless watermelon
2 parts tomatoes
1 part nectarines, pit removed

salt to taste
drizzle of olive oil
cubed cucumbers

Directions
1. Puree watermelon, tomatoes and nectarine and season with salt
2. Pour gazpacho into bowls and drizzle with olive oil
3. Top with cubed cucumbers

I used yellow watermelon because that's what I had, but you can use whichever watermelon you have. Clearly seedless is the best ;)

9/10/16

Happy Weekend: Hibiscus Rum Cocktail with Mint

It's Saturday! Happy weekend.

I'm flying back to DC after a week of family and friends time in Seattle.

Last night my twin and I hung out with a movie, picnic dinner, and a cocktail.

Use any amounts of the following: mint, lime, ice, hibiscus aqua fresca, Fresca, rum! 

Start by muddling mint and lime juice in a glass, then add the rest of the ingredients. 

Enjoy!




9/2/16

Hello From Seattle

Happy weekend! I'm in Seattle visiting family and friends. Yes, it's raining, but that's alright. Cheers to the weekend and a week of fun and good food.


8/31/16

Perfect Way To Eat A Mango: Mango Rosette


Look up! What's the first name of my blog? MANGO! I love mangoes and eat them often.

Sometimes I peel a mango and eat the flesh as an apple. Sometimes I treat it like an avocado and make cross marks on the inside of cut off halves and then scoop out the flesh using a large spoon.

Last week, however, I came up with the fanciest best way to eat a mango: Mango Rosette!

You've seen the fancy pictures of avocado rosettes all over internet and instagram, but have you seen one made out of a mango? You probably haven't unless you follow me on instagram.

I've failed to make perfect avocado rosettes, but this mango one was pretty easy. I think the key is to have a perfectly ripe mango that's not too soft.

Mango Rosette
1) peel mango
2) using a sharp knife, cut off two "cheeks"
3) slice each "cheek" thinly across {not the long way}
4) carefully shape each one of the cut up cheeks into a long overlapping row and then curl one around the other on a cutting board
5) super carefully slide your creation onto a plate

That's all! I think writing the directions was harder than actually making this rosette. I wish I had someone at home who could videotape it while I was making this up. Oh well.

Try it out!

8/29/16

Tortilla Espanola For One: Prefect Meatless Monday Recipe

Friday night I decided to make Tortilla Espanola for breakfast on Saturday, but ended up not waking up till almost 11 am after a night of salsa dancing and going out for Mexican and Bloody Marys with my friend Sarah instead.

No worries: luckily there are two days in a weekend. 

This dish is great for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner. If you are making this for Meatless Monday tonight (you have plenty of time to get the ingredients if you don't have them on hand already), add a side salad and you'll be all set.

Tortilla Espanola For One: Prefect Meatless Monday Recipe
Makes 1

Ingredients
2 small Yukon gold potatoes, sliced thinly
water
salt
olive oil
1/4 small onion, chopped
2 eggs
splash of half & half

Directions
1. Cook potatoes until tender in salted water.
2. Meanwhile saute onions in olive oil seasoned with salt in a little skillet. I used my Lodge cast iron skillet.
3. Remove onions from the skillet. Add a bit extra olive oil if needed and layer drained potatoes (I made two layers).
4. Top potatoes with sauteed onions and a whisked mixture of eggs, half & half, and salt.
5. Cook Tortilla Espanola covered on low heat until most of the egg mixture has set. 
6. Put the skillet under the broiler for about 5 minutes until the top is golden brown and the eggs are completely set.

How beautiful is this?


You can serve Tortilla Espanola as is out of the cast iron skillet or turn it upside down and serve it no the plate: