Category Archives: Treats

Kiwi and Mango Nigiri : It’s Easy Being Green : Marx Food Contest!

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marxZestyBeanDog has entered another Marx Foods Contest!  They are just too much fun to not partake in! Marx Foods send you a box of sample sized goodies and the rules are simple:  You have to use at least two ingredients and then blog the recipe. This time around there will be 2 winners, one from internal vote and one from public vote (that me means YOU, my dear friends). Voting will begin on Tuesday at which point I will add the new link to my blog. Then you can check out all the recipes and vote for your favorite one!  The winners get $100 in Marx Food Store Credit and you know I need that BAD!!! I’m all out of  YUZU juice! 😉

I chose to use the Bamboo Rice, Cardamom, and the Mint Herb Crystals to create a Kiwi and Mango Nigiri. This was a tasty and whimsical play on dessert and sushi that I will be making it again for sure, probably for a dinner party. The cardamom infused bamboo rice was subtle yet alluring and the slight crunch of the crystalized mint paired surprisingly well with the mango and bamboo rice.  I couldn’t resist doing kiwi not only because it’s green but also because I love it and the little seeds gave a great texture to the nigiri. The nigiri was then served with a orange honey marmalade and rice wine sauce. Overall it was a fun dish, to eat and to make!

Nigiri

Prep Time: 60 min

Cook Time: 20 min

Serves: Makes 8 Nigiri

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Boil 1 Cup of water add crushed cardamom pods and seeds, let sit for 10 min on simmer. Strain and reserve water for rice. 
  2. Add rinsed bamboo rice to water bring to a boil, add 1 tsp rice wine vinegar, cover and simmer for 20 min or until done.
  3. Cut up kiwi and mango thinly to arrange on top of rice.
  4. Let rice cool for about 20-30 min.
  5. Make 8 nigiri mounds with your hands and place fruit on top and garnish with crystalized mint and real mint.
  6. Serve with honey orange marmalade with a splash of rice wine.

Enjoy with a glass of wine!

Goodies

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New Year’s Eve 6 Course Meal at the Fawn House

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This New Year’s Eve Evan and I had a dinner party for 6 of our good friends.  We have never been really big on going out to bars/restaurants/ downtown  for NYE, so we decided that we would do a 6 course meal and invite everyone stay at the house.  It worked perfect we all chipped in $20 a person and had a meal that was AMAZING and no one had to drive home afterward 🙂

You may notice something trending in this menu… can you guess what I got for Christmas from my Fry Daddy???

Here’s how it went down…

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Name Tags I made

First Course: charcurterie sampler : chicken liver pâté, NY chorizo, sottocenere with truffles, cheddar farmstead block, olives, hot and sweet pickles and peppers, with a cracker and bread assortment

Charcuterie

Sampler

Second course: pizzette with fried brussel sprout leaves tossed with crispy bacon and golden raisins drizzled with a tarragon and meyer lemon cream sauce and parm shavings

Fried Sprouts

Third course: 20 hr sous vide spiced pork belly on top a collard and mash mound

Pork Belly

Fourth course: 5 wild mushroom risotto with 110 min egg

110 Min Egg

Fifth course: sous vide duck breast topped with  hibiscus flower and fried shallots on a bed of arugula

Sous Vide Duck

Sixth course: strawberry and champagne shortcake with dark chocolate snow and whipped cream sprinkled with pop rocks

Dessert

If you were wondering…I got a Sous Vide Supreme!

 

HAPPY 2013 EVERYONE! CHEERS!

Cajun-ified Scotch Eggs (Made with Duck Eggs)

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Probably just made up a word here… cajun-ified 🙂  I’m sure Evan could give you a whole list of words I’ve made up over the years – Must be from my Mom.

Anyhow, these eggs are prepared like your traditional Scotch Eggs but  are so much better! The idea came from thinking about what to prepare for a birthday dinner party for my good friend Hannah.  The Fawn House was open for business (the name I give my kitchen when I’m creating fun new foods). The theme was Cajun Fusion since she’s Cajun! Knowing that  she loves duck eggs and sausage, I decided to marry the two and create a Cajun-ified Scotch Egg! These eggs are accompanied by a tasty remoulade to your dip the eggs in.  Evan was my Fry Daddy, as he tends to be 🙂 I prep he fries!

Duck eggs can be found at your local farmer’s market or Asian market. They can be found on occasion at Central Market, but I’d call first… You also can do these with regular eggs if you cannot find duck eggs. Duck eggs have a richer yolk and are quite tasty!

Prep: 30 min

Cook Time: Approx 20 min (includes egg boiling).

Makes: 5 Eggs

Ingredients:

  • 5 Duck eggs, hardboiled (don’t boil them all the way to completion, take them out about 2-3 min early, the will cook the remainder in the fryer).
  • 1/2 lb Ground pork sausage or andouille, raw (If you’re doing ground pork, I’ll tell you what to season it with below).
  • 1 C. Panko bread crumbs
  • Peanut Oil
  • 1 beaten egg, can be duck or regular.

Seasoning for ground pork, if not using Andouille

  • 1/2 tsp Salt, kosher
  • 1 tsp Cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp Cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Thyme, dried
  • 1 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Onion powder

Instructions

  1. Hard boil duck eggs and place in ice bath to stop cooking. Set aside. Remember take out 2-3 min early.
  2. Mix spices in to meat if preparing your own sausage. Roll sausage into 5 even sized balls.
  3. Heat fryer to 350 degrees F.
  4. Wrap duck eggs in sausage like you see below.
  5. Dip wrapped egg in beaten egg then panko bread crumb and set aside. Continue until done with all 5.
  6. Place duck eggs in heated fryer oil and fry until golden brown, about 5-7 min.
  7. Place on paper towel.

Serve with your favorite remoulade dipping sauce! These are filling and delicious 1 egg is plenty for an appetizer portion you could even get away with halving them. I completely forgot to get a pic of them split open! Next time I cook these, I will update this post with one. Enjoy!

Marx Foods Fire and Ice Contest : Chile, Yuzu, and Jasmine Tea Granita

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This granita is a flavorful multi-dimensional creation that starts off cool and tart and builds with a fiery heat from the Thai and tepin chilies. It’s a short lived heat that surprisingly keeps you coming back for more. It’s sure to take your taste buds on a roller-coaster!  I’m submitting this to the Fire and Ice Contest held by Marx Foods. I will post the link where you can vote for my creation as soon as it goes live. I appreciate the support as always! To read more about the contest click here. VOTE HERE NOW 🙂

Serves : 2

Prep: 10 min

Set Time: 3 hrs

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 C. Yuzu Juice
  • 1/4 C. Water
  • 1/4 C. Jasmine Tea
  • 1/4 C. Agave Nectar
  • 1 Thai chile, ground
  • 2 Tepin chiles, ground
  • 2 Cherries, pitted

Instructions:

  1. In a mortar and pestle, grind chilies, seeds and all.
  2. In a small/medium pot combine all ingredients and heat to a simmer for 10 min.
  3. Strain liquid, removing chilies and cherries. Reserve liquid and cherries.
  4. Place liquid in a shallow container and freeze for 3 hrs.
  5. Slice cherries and reserve.
  6. Once liquid is frozen, churn up with two forks and serve, garnishing with the soaked sliced cherries.

Enjoy!

Disclaimer:  I did not receive any compensation from Marx Food for this post.  All opinions are my own.

Cucumber Yuzu and Lavender Granita

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This is the perfect little frozen treat to make at home. It’s so refreshing and so simple to make.

Serves: 6

Prep Time: 20 min

Set Time: about 2-3 hours or so, or until mostly frozen.

Ingredients:

  • 3 large organic cucumbers peeled and chopped into chunks
  • 1 C. White sugar ( I would like to try this with agave nectar next time).
  • 3/4 C. Water
  • 1/4 C. Yuzu Juice
  • Fresh basil
  • Sea Salt (if desired).
  • 2 sprigs of fresh lavender

Instructions:

  1. Juice cucumbers if you have a juicer, if not blend in a blender and strain through a mesh strainer or cheese cloth, reserve juice.
  2. Heat water and yuzu juice to a boil, adding lavender sprigs. Stir in sugar and create a simple syrupy substance, once sugar is melted take off heat and let cool. Remove lavender sprigs and discard.
  3. Combine juice and syrup in a shallow plastic plan.
  4. Freeze until mostly frozen, scrape icy mixture with a fork to “fluff” up.
  5. Serve with a basil and salt garnish.

Enjoy and cheers!

I’m Baaaaack! Evan’s 10 Course Dinner Birthday Surprise – The Fawn House

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I’m done studying! My brain feels like mush but I’m finally finally done… From Sanskrit to anatomy to chakras… I know it all…well most of it anyways. It’s been 10 months of yoga yoga and more yoga and I will graduate (fingers crossed) next Tuesday! I have not however been slacking in the kitchen, in fact I have been going crazy in the kitchen.

I decided to make Evan a VERY special birthday surprise by creating my own restaurant at home (called The Fawn House, hence all the new fawn roaming in our yard) and cooking a 10 course meal! It was so awesome and I’ve never cooked so many awesome things all at once in my life EVER. I invited 3 of our closest friends and got to work on planning the menu a week in advance. I was so incredibly excited it wasn’t even funny! The few days before I mapped out my course of action and started collecting my goods. Last Friday I made it all come to a reality. I based the menu off “The odd parts/bits” of animals and used as much local and farm fresh ingredients as possible.  Here’s how it went down!

Each course was paired with a special libation. The food was wonderful and it definitely was a night to remember.  I can’t believe I pulled it off… I want give a big thanks to Liz for making the awesome dessert portion! It was amazing!

Well it’s good to be back on the blog-o-sphere!

For some final- VERY exciting news… Yesterday I received an email from the casting director of Chopped encouraging me to apply for the Amateur Special in Austin! I was recommended by the Food Experiments! I’m in the process of applying as we speak! Wish me luck everyone! Stay tuned for more on that.

I missed all of your blogs like crazy so I have a ton of catching up to do! Cheers to you all!

Birthday Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars

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I figured I’d celebrate my Birthday today by posting an awesome recipe I have adapted from Rufus’ Food and Spirits Guide. I usually never go off a recipe unless I’m baking a dessert or making something someone asked me to make from a recipe they found, I can never stick to them verbatim though I always “throw” something else in 😉 I’m not a huge “cake” fan in fact at our wedding we had cobbler because we don’t favor cake 🙂  I made these last week for one of Evan’s co-workers, Lori, for her birthday (he did help a bit in case anyone was wondering ; ) ) and they were so good. I ate WAY to many, I even found myself eating them for breakfast…! I’m 28 years old today and feel great!!! I’m still wondering where all this time goes though… Life is good!

Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars (adapted from Rufus’ Food and Spirits Guide and Elephant Eats)

Prep: 20 min

Cook Time: 20 min

Makes: 40 -45 bars

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt, and more for end
  • 1 1/2 cups corn syrup
  • 4 ounces dark chocolate
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 ounce bourbon
  • 1 ounce cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups chopped Texas pecans

Instructions:

  1. Grease bottom and sides of 15″x10″x1″ baking dish or two smaller pans.
  2. In a stand mixer on medium, beat flour, 1/2 C. sugar, butter and salt until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press into the bottom of prepared pan. Bake at 350 for 20 min.
  3. Meanwhile, in a three-quart pan, stir corn syrup and chocolate on low until melted. Remove from heat and allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
  4. Stir in maple syrup, bourbon, remainder of sugar, eggs and pecans. Pour filling over hot crust and bake at 350 until firm around edges but slightly soft in center, about 30 minutes. Sprinkle with a bit of sea salt.
  5. Cool in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.
 Enjoy and Cheers!