Tag Archives: Cooking

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!

Strawberry and Pecan Spinach Salad + OXO Giveaway : Good Grips Salad Dressing Shaker

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Summer is here (I live in Texas remember) and that means it’s salad time in ZBD land. I love salads year round but there’s just something about the summer time that makes them taste better! Included in this post is a chance for you to win your very own OXO Salad Dressing Shaker! See details on how to win at the end of the post 🙂

Strawberry and Pecan Spinach Salad with a Lemon Poppy Yuzu Dressing 

Prep: 10 min

Serves: 6

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 C. Baby Spinach
  • 2 C. Strawberries, sliced
  • 1/2 C. Pecans

Dressing:

  • Juice of two lemons
  • 1/8 C. Yuzu Juice
  • 1/4 C. Olive Oil
  • 1/4 C. Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 TBS. Poppy Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. Black Pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. Sea salt

Instructions:

The Salad Dressing Shaker by OXO makes it easy to measure with the handy measurements on the side. Add in this order for ease: Olive oi to 1/4 marker, yuzu to 1/3 marker, apple cider to 1/2 marker, then add lemon juice and poppy seeds/seasonings. Shake well before pouring. Can store for up to a week in the fridge.

My thoughts on the OXO Salad Shaker…

I love everything about it:

  • The rubber grip helps to well keep a “grip” on it even if you get a bit of oil on your fingers which is nice.
  • I love the measurement marks, I usually eyeball but this helps me for writing my recipes for dressings out and being a blogger that comes in handy a lot.
  • I love the simple spout thats sealed with a rubber grommet, it allows your finger to rest on top for added security. I haven’t had it leak out once no matter how hard I shake it. I’ve had shakers in the past where this is not the case and I end up with oil and vinegar all over my cabinets 😦 This simple design is actually the best I’ve seen. Best of all you can use it one handed!
  • It’s BPA free which is a plus for times when making a warm dressing! No leeching BPA’s into your dressing is always a plus!
  • It’s all sealed wonderfully so you can leave the dressing in the shaker for multiples days in the fridge, depending on your ingredients some may even last a couple of weeks.
  • It says it’s dishwasher safe, but I know this product will probably last me much longer if I hand wash it, so that’s what I’ve been doing. I like my gadgets to last a long time 😉
  • It holds a 1 1/2 C. capacity which is plenty for me.

I haven’t found any cons with this product and plan on doing a follow up in 6 months.

*I received 2 OXO Salad Dressing Shakers for FREE, one for myself and one to give away to one of my loyal followers. All opinions I have expressed are my own truthful ones. I have not been paid by OXO or any affiliated company to write this review. I signed up  for OXO’s Blogger Outreach Program.

Here’s 5 ways to enter to win: (doing all 5 means you have 5 entries) 🙂

  1. Subscribe to my Blog if you aren’t already and leave me a comment saying you’ve done so or already are an awesome fan.
  2. “Like” OXO on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/OXO and  leave me a comment saying you’ve done so.
  3. “Like” ZestyBeanDog on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Zestybeandog and leave me a comment saying you’ve done so.
  4. “Pin It” (this post)  on Pinterest  and leave me a comment saying you’ve done so.
  5. Share This Post on your Facebook page and leave me a comment saying you’ve done so.
I apologize for any inconvenience but this is limited to U.S. Residents ONLY. 

Good Luck! The winner will be announced May 1st 2012! Cheers!

Wondering where ZestyBeanDog has been??? I was too… so here’s the answer!

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From Ovaries, Ostrich Eggs, and Pickled Quail Eggs to

Absinthe, Oysters, and … Working out A LOT

I’m not going to lie, I’ve been a huge slacker when it comes to the ZBD Blog… I can honestly say this is the only place I have been slacking! I’ve been busy, really busy in fact… Eating, drinking (not just fancy martini’s and beer but also a ton of hibiscus tea and H2O), cooking, butchering, cleaning, playing, working out/yoga and oh yeah… working a $!#@ LOAD! I also had surgery to remove and ovarian cyst (all is well now)! I decided that I wanted to take a break from recipes since I’ve been religiously blogging for a year on recipes and the occasional restaurant review and show you a quick snippet of me and what my life consists of before I get back into the recipe writing… Some days are more interesting than others but over all Evan and I like to keep things pretty fun! Cheers!

In no real particular order here are some snippets of what I’ve been up to!

Evan’s 27th Birthday we had a surprise party for him, one of his gifts was an ostrich egg… Thanks Kyle Bass 🙂

Snagged these pickled quail eggs on the way back from the beach… they are good, great in salads, on crackers, even in tuna salad… in case you were ever wondering.

SOME FOOD WE’VE EATEN…

Halibut: Perla’s

Shell’s and Cheese : Perla’s
Oysters from 6 different regions: Perla’s

Mussels and Sausage : Perla’s

A Fried Egg Sandwich : Bigger than your head (Evan and Dave ordered this…) : Max’s Wine Dive

I have no idea where we had this??? Or what it was… 🙂

SOME DRINKS WE HAD…

My FAVORITE drink, the LDM: Legendary Driskill Martini : The Driskill

Absinthe : Peche

Evan and Hannah: After Absinthe @ Peche

Evan the Wino : Max’s Wine Dive (Remind me NEVER drink/try this much wine again, or at least not for a while!)

SOME FOOD WE’VE MADE….

Bimimbap with Bulgogi : The Makings

The End Result: YUM

KimChi Fries : Inspiration= Recent trip to Korea and recent trip to a bar down town that happen’s to be by Chilantro

Veal Marsala:Humanely Raised Of Course

Shrimp and Squash with Purple Potatoes

Because I’m Sure You Don’t Want to See the Real

Thing…

The size of the ovarian cyst I had removed July 8th

BEWARE GRAPHIC ANIMAL PICTURE : Thanks Kyle

for a WHOLE BOAR!

My friend Kyle loves to bring us random animals and foods as you can see… Kyle owed me a rental deposit from our old apartment we used to live in… He raised 2 boars on the farm this summer and showed up at my door with this in exchange, now it’s in the freezer. Who’s in the mood for some pork, I got a ton!?

When I’m not doing all of these other things sometime’s

I organize my life, or spices!

My Spice Cabinet Remodel : Thank You Target and Label Maker

What Do You Do When You are Down Town and Early

for Your Brunch Reservation… Go to the Capitol

Our old friend Dave in town from Cali.

For the end of this post, I’ll share my

nightly entertainment (yes, every night) from my

husband and dog… 🙂

When it’s too hot for Ginger to go play at the park with the other doggies, Evan becomes that dog 🙂 Ginger waits for this all day…

This is what I’ve been up to, it’s random… I know!  I look forward to posting recipes for your viewing and hopefully cooking pleasure now! In a month a start yoga teacher training for the next 9 months, so you may be in for some random yoga posts 🙂 Cheers to YOU, my followers, if I didn’t have you all well… I probably wouldn’t be sitting here typing on the ZestyBeanDog Blog! I’ve had almost 10,000 visits in a year and have almost 50 subscribers, thanks for all the love!

-ZBD

Super Delicious Thai Beef Salad

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Prep Time: 10

Marinate Time: 4hrs to overnight

Cook Time: 3 min (depending on thickness of meat).

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb Flank steak or your choice of cut, 1/2 ” thick or so
  • 1/2  Cucumber sliced, you can get fancy if you want or just plain ol’ slices
  • 1 Carrot, sliced
  • 4-5 Thin slices of yellow onion
  • 1 Handful of cilantro
  • Mixed greens, your choice on how much.
  • 1 tsp Canola oil
  • Marinade ingredients: 2 tsp chili paste (I use garlic chili paste), 1 TBS fresh minced ginger, 1 TBS minced garlic, 1/4 C soy sauce, 1 TBS fish sauce, 1 tsp brown sugar, 1 pinch of pepper.  Mix in bowl.
Instructions:
  1. Mix marinade and place meat in a ziplock or bowl and pour marinade over meat.  Refrigerate for 4+ hours.
  2. Cut up produce and arrange salad in bowl.
  3. Heat large skillet on high, add canola oil. Remove meat from marinade DO NOT DISCARD MARINADE, take marinade and pour into small sauce pan, heat until boiling for 30 seconds then pour into a coffee cup and place into freezer while you cook your beef.
  4. Once skillet is hot, add beef and cook for about 1.5-2 min of each side (or longer if you like it well done).
  5. Slice meat and place on salad.
  6. Pour remaining marinade on both salads. Add cilantro to top of salad.
  7. Serve with soup if desired.
Enjoy

Seoul, South Korea WOW!

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hello – 안녕하세요 (annyeonghaseyo)

Well sorry for the slight delay in posting, we’ve been very busy! We’ve had a fantastic time eating, sightseeing, and even with our LUCK! I’ll briefly touch on all of these and then I’m off to visit a palace!

The Food:

Well we started eating differently on the plane. On our way to Seoul from Tokyo we got an interesting “club sandwich”. It was 2 white breads with a wheat bread in the middle, on the top layer was and egg like substance, then a roast beef like slice (just 2), and then american

cheese….Now for the good stuff:

We went to a place called Din Fung for dim sum and had plenty of soup dumpling, regular dumplings, kimchi (it’s served with every meal), sauteed baby bok, and tea. It was all very good and 100 times better than anything in America! They also hand made all of the dumplings and noodles in a kitchen you could see in while eating so that was really cool!Then we had Indian at Asia Luna, all very good at SPICY! (this is where I discovered that the Men’s and Women’s restrooms in public are in the same room…).

Next thing on the list was Bibimbap and Bulgogi:

The word literally means “mixed meal.” Bibimbap is served as a bowl of warm white rice topped with namul (sautéed and seasoned vegetables) and gochujang (chili pepper paste). A raw or fried egg and sliced meat (usually beef) are common additions. The ingredients are stirred together thoroughly just before eating.[2] It can be served either cold or hot. Bulgogi (Korean pronunciation: [bulɡoɡi]) is a Korean dish that usually consists of marinated barbecued beef, although chicken or pork may also be used.

This was typical Korean fare an very tasty!!! I really liked this a lot and was anxious for my first real Korean dish! The one thing I really love so far about Korean fare is everything comes with sides and different sauces.

We had some random snacks and drinks here and there like:

Ho-tteok is a variety of filled Korean pancake, and is a popular street food of South Korea. It is usually eaten during the winter season. It was very sweet.

Kimbab, which is like sushi rolls but with veggies and a minimal amount of meat and some other things I have no idea what they were…(sorry no picture, I forgot).

Soju (Hangul 소주; Hanja 燒酒) is a distilled beverage native to Korea. Its taste is comparable to vodka, though often slightly sweeter due to the sugars added in the manufacturing process, and more commonly consumed neat. This was super cheap and pretty potent, we had a small bottle a local bar with our Cass beer and it was “interesting” kind of rice like wine with vodka in it. Haven’t had another bottle since but not ruling it out…

Kings Dessert: This is good entertainment and these guys really ham it up for the Americans! See vide0

We also had Korean BBQ: which was awesome! We had pork and beef, both equally good! You cook it up yourself and then dip it in the according sauces, all served with several sides of course! EVERYONE here was smoking and drinking Soju, we were the last people that made it in then they started turning people away because they were “full”. Apparently in Korea there’s no “waiting” for a table even though they seem to “wait” for EVERYTHING else… especially subways! While I’m on the subway topic, if you like your “personal space” you absolutely DON”T have it in Korea, think sardines and then throwing another 20 in the same can! You’re lucky if you get in and even luckier if you can get off at times. Every once in a while we would get a seat but not often. Out of 25 million Korean’s- it feels like probably 99% take public transportation to get around.

The Sights:

So far we have seen a lot:

The Bongenus Temple, Namdaemun Market, The Express Bus Terminal (loads and loads of shopping), Nseoul Tower, The National Museum, Insadong artsy area, The Coex, and more. I will go into more detail later on these…Now for the LUCKY ODDS part!

I looked this stat up and from what I found 5.6 million people use this subway on average a day, wow! It’s almost nauseating how many people are running around all the time! Well yesterday we were heading home on the Subway and we happened to run in to an old friend from San Marcos that we knew when we were in college, she used to date my old roommate… We had joked several times: “I wonder if we will run into Kay?” WELL… we did! It was absolutely amazing! We were in total shock! Seoul’s subway is the 3rd largest in the world! We’re meeting up with her next Thursday!

We leave for Thailand tomorrow! Stay tuned!

Homemade Pizza with Collard Greens, Prosciutto, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, and Crispy Garlic

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All I can say about this pizza is one word… UNBELIEVABLE!!!  Quote from my husband Evan: “This is the kind of pizza you order over and over again at a restaurant because it’s so good.”

Prep: This depends on if you make your own dough, you can buy pre-made at most stores now or Central Market.  Minus dough making it will take about 10 min to prep.

Cook Time: 4 min for collard greens, 10 min for crispy garlic, and 12-15 min for pizza.

Ingredients:

  • Dough can be homemade or store bought- a good dough is important!
  • 1 large handful of collard greens, chopped up small (1″x 1″)
  • 1 Lemon, juiced
  • 1/4 C Chicken stock
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 6 slices of Prosciutto (find one cured with sea salt, not nitrates if possible).
  • 14 oz of a mozzarella, provolone, and swiss blend, shredded, (you can use more or less depending on how much cheese you like).
  • 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano (don’t skimp, use some good stuff).
  • 5 sun-dried tomatoes (the dry kind, not in oil) sliced.
  • 3 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil
  • 3-5 oz of Muir Organic Tomato Sauce (add 1/2 TBS of herbs de provence, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, and pinch of salt and stir).

Instructions:

  • Preheat Oven to 350 to start (later you will bump up to 400).
  • Add chicken stock, lemon juice, and pinch of salt to a medium skillet on med high, add chopped collard greens and cook for 3-4 min.  Transfer to a bowl.
  • Cut up garlic and transfer to a small baking dish with 1 tsp of olive oil, bake for about 10 min.  They should be turning golden but not burning.
  • Make sauce up with herbs from above in a small bowl.
  • Start assembling pizza: Dough, sauce, cheese blend, collard greens, prosciutto, tomatoes, garlic, then parmigiano-Reggiano.
  • Bake for 12-15 min @ 400 degrees

Enjoy!  You will love the slight taste of lemon in the collard greens and the crispy garlic that penetrates this pie!

 

Iron Foodie Contest

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Fukui-San!

Hi Everyone-

I’m entering  the Iron Foodie Contest (from the Foodie Blogroll) and these are my submission Q/A’s!  I’ll let everyone know If I’m selected on November 10th!  Keep your fingers crossed!

Why do you want to compete in this challenge?

I want to compete because I LOVE a good competition!  I’ve never competed in a food challenge before but often find my self day- dreaming of being on Chopped, The Next Food Network Star, Top Chef or Iron Chef.  I was so excited to see this challenge in my inbox and have been pondering these questions ever since.  I’m ready for this challenge and would love to show the blogosphere what I’ve got!  You won’t be disappointed!

Limitations of time/space notwithstanding, whose kitchen would you like to spend the day in & why? Julia Child, Thomas Keller, Ferran Adria, James Beard, Marie-Antoine Careme, or The Swedish Chef?

I would like to spend the day with Thomas Keller, his tastings are amazing!  I’ve always been envious of him, the fact that he can create these journeys of emotion through these delicate tastings.  He never uses the same ingredient over in one of his 9 course tasting menus… every bite is truly unique!  I would love to let all my senses loose in the French Laundry Kitchen for a day!

What morsel are you most likely to swipe from family & friends’ plates when they aren’t looking?

Probably a bite of garlic smashed potatoes or that lonesome little homemade tortellini/pizza crust that was so sadly forgotten about… pretty much any carbohydrate  🙂

Sum your childhood up in one meal.

Homemade Beef Stronganoff with and side of Spinach Au-gratin and Au-gratin Potatoes (from a box)… oh can’t forget the Pillsbury Crescent Rolls (that was my job, I loved popping the can) – cooked by non other than my Dad 🙂

The one mainstream food you can’t stand?

I cannot stand the pre-marinated fajitas or tenderloins (or really any pre-marinated meats for that matter)- the one’s that are pre-packaged at the grocery store!  They have tons of weird chemical solutions in them and they make the meats taste VERY strange and in result they have a very unnatural texture…. Marinate and tenderize it yourself!