Blog Posts by Jada C

  • User post: Lazy girl's latkes and a giveaway


    Latkes and matzo ball soupLatkes and matzo ball soup

    It's Hanukkah and Dave's been seriously cashing in on his first year celebrating the festival of lights.

    He still can't get over the whole presents-for-eight-nights-in-a-row thing; he hustled me for 20 bucks in his first game of dreidel (beginner's luck); and he enjoyed a couple of the best dishes Judaism has to offer: Latkes and matzo ball soup.

    It's been a lazy couple of weeks for me and the thought of shredding four pounds of Russets gave me a headache. Lucky for me, I had this fabulous Progresso package from MyBlogSpark (Which one lucky commenter will also win) ...

    Progresso Blogspark packageProgresso Blogspark package

    ... and some frozen hash browns. Soooooo, I present to you ...

    Lazy latkes and mellow matzo ball soup

    latkes and matzo ballslatkes and matzo balls

    Lazy Latkes

    You'll need:

    6 cups frozen hash browns (about one large bag)

    1/2 of a large yellow onion, minced

    2 eggs

    1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

    ground pepper (5-10 turns or the grinder)

    1-2 teaspoons salt (kosher, of course)

    vegetable oil for frying

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  • Lazy girl's latkes and a giveaway


    Latkes and matzo ball soupLatkes and matzo ball soup

    It's Hanukkah and Dave's been seriously cashing in on his first year celebrating the festival of lights.

    He still can't get over the whole presents-for-eight-nights-in-a-row thing; he hustled me for 20 bucks in his first game of dreidel (beginner's luck); and he enjoyed a couple of the best dishes Judaism has to offer: Latkes and matzo ball soup.

    It's been a lazy couple of weeks for me and the thought of shredding four pounds of Russets gave me a headache. Lucky for me, I had this fabulous Progresso package from MyBlogSpark (Which one lucky commenter will also win) ...

    Progresso Blogspark packageProgresso Blogspark package

    ... and some frozen hash browns. Soooooo, I present to you ...

    Lazy latkes and mellow matzo ball soup

    latkes and matzo ballslatkes and matzo balls

    Lazy Latkes

    You'll need:

    6 cups frozen hash browns (about one large bag)

    1/2 of a large yellow onion, minced

    2 eggs

    1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

    ground pepper (5-10 turns or the grinder)

    1-2 teaspoons salt (kosher, of course)

    vegetable oil for frying

    Read More »from Lazy girl's latkes and a giveaway
  • User post: Giving Gracias (a Retrospective)


    I'm still recovering from the 48-hour cooking marathon, gluttonous spread and absolute debauchery that is our misfit-full, southwestern Thanksgiving celebration.

    Let me paint the scene: Colorful characters mingling over excessive amounts of tequila, criminal quantities of turkey (2, 15-pounders and a 20-pounder to be exact), all the trimmings with a southwestern flair, ridiculously perfect, sun-shiny, 75-degree weather, football broadcast on a backyard pool-side cabana bar TV...

    ... and me slaving away in a hot kitchen. I kid, I kid. I have to admit I enjoy it. Besides, if I didn't cook, we'd be eating pies from Costco (no offense Don) and canned cranberry sauce. OK, so we ate those things (and LOVED it) anyway, but I digress.

    Anyway, back to my food. You simply can't mess up Paula's corn and potato casseroles, so I surrendered those to my sister. I made Rick Bayless' Chocolate pecan pie, which I first attempted for me and Dave's anniversary dinner, acorn

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  • User post: Essential Thanksgiving tips, dozens of recipe links


    2009_11_15_22009_11_15_2

    Preparing for Thanksgiving is like getting ready for a big game. You can't successfully execute without a solid game plan.

    So huddle up!

    OK, enough with the bad sports analogies. Let's get started.

    Week before Thanksgiving

    • Order your turkey/s---figure about 1-1.5 pounds per person, but if you like leftovers as much as my family, you'll buy an entire extra turkey
    • Start thinking about your menu. Technically, you don't have to commit until your grocery store trip, but it helps to have time to brainstorm and not feel rushed
    • Give guests ideas for dishes they can bring

    Week of Thanksgiving

    • Take inventory---make sure you have the items you need in your pantry (spices, canned items, etc.) and pots, pans and other utensils
    • Clean out your fridge to make room
    • Buy all the non-perishable ingredients you'll need. Unless you enjoy the fighting with old ladies over the last can of pumpkin filling or hauling and unloading 200 pounds of groceries the day of.
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  • User post: Fried egg perfection


    Breakfast sandwich_2Breakfast sandwich_2

    Anything with the word "fried" in it is good in my book. Anything fried in freshly rendered bacon fat is even better. Our new weekend obsession is a heart blockage waiting to happen, but I'll risk a triple bypass later in life for this baby.

    What makes this recipe special are the individual ingredients---so don't skimp on quality.

    breakfast sandwich_5breakfast sandwich_5

    Fried Egg and Bacon Sandwich

    You'll need:

    good, thick-sliced bread (I've used sourdough, ciabatta, and the best yet, freshly baked no-knead bread)

    cheese (I like cheddar or colby jack)

    thick-cut bacon

    fresh eggs

    salt and freshly ground pepper

    First, cook the bacon in a skillet and set aside on a paper towel. Leave enough of the bacon fat in the pan to fry your egg/s. Put your bread under the broiler with a slice of cheese on each slice. Meanwhile, crack the egg in a bowl and then carefully pour the egg on the hot skillet. Using a silicone spatula, center the yolk and let the white set for a minute or so.

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  • User post: It's all Greek to me


    Baklava_8Baklava_8

    I've botched baklava before. It's hard to pinpoint my mistake, as I was in fourth grade at the time, completing an assignment as part of a project on Greece. My mother and I got the recipe from the owner of a local greek restaurant (unfortunately, we didn't have the advantage of Epicurious or AllRecipes back then) and I'm afraid something was lost in translation.

    The baklava was more phyllo brick than sticky, flaky pastry.

    This time around, I had my redemption. Sweet, sweet, sticky, flaky redemption.

    Baklava_5Baklava_5

    Baklava

    You'll need:

    several sheets of phyllo dough (one package should do)

    3 cups walnuts

    1/3 cup brown sugar

    2 teaspoons cinnamon

    1 cup water

    1 cup sugar

    1/2 cup honey

    1 cup melted butter

    First, preheat the oven and prepare the filling by combining the brown sugar, cinnamon and walnuts in a food processor. Set aside.

    Baklava fillingBaklava filling

    Take sheets of thawed phyllo and begin layering them in a greased pan. You have to work somewhat

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  • My plan was foiled...


    Salmon in foil_7Salmon in foil_7

    A few weeks ago I went into a cleaning frenzy, and before I knew it, I had doused my entire oven in CLR. CLR is not exactly non-toxic, as you may know.

    I realized what I'd done almost immediately and began furiously wiping down the oven with cold water. An hour of scrubbing, several frantic Google searches, one call to my mother and one email to Jelmar (the makers of CLR) later, the oven still smelled of CLR and I wasn't sure if it would ever be safe to cook in again.

    In the end I may have overreacted a bit---Googled turned up several forums with people who've cleaned cast-iron skillets with CLR, and the helpful folks at Jelmar informed me that CLR Kitchen & Bath (the product I used) is indeed safe for ovens.

    Before the ordeal was over, however, I'd thrown out an entire batch of mojo de ajo--convinced it was tainted with toxic chemicals that might poison Dave, resulting in his death and the scandalous accusation that I'd planned it all along.

    What can I say? I

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  • Lobster_2Lobster_2
    Dave and I have been together five years this month. We've had some great times, travelled to some amazing places and are closer and more in love than ever. But enough with the mushy stuff---you don't really want to hear about that anyway---let's get to the good part: the food.
    I'm a part of this month's Foodbuzz 24, 24, 24, and I decided to do a five-course anniversary meal---celebrating each year of our relationship with a memorable dish from that year. Four grocery stores, one fish market, four hours of shopping, and nine hours of cooking later, we sat down to eat five years of memories to the mellow tunes of John Mayer's Continuum album.
    First course: Ham and cheese croquettes

    Ham croquettes_2Ham croquettes_2
    These little golden-fried beauties were inspired by our time in Spain, when Dave came to visit me during my study abroad stint our first year together.
    Second course: Microgreen salad with honey dressing

    microgreen salad_2microgreen salad_2 microgreen saladmicrogreen salad
    I LOOOOVE this salad. Surprisingly, so does Dave. I say surprisingly because Dave is a

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  • User post: Food, football and redemption


    Football Game FoodFootball Game Food

    Last week, I made some delicious game-day food for the return of Sunday Football at Jim's place.

    Unfortunately, as a result of Cutler's awful debut performance, I was too dejected to actually post about it.

    Since I went to great lengths to make bear-shaped food, and the Bears redeemed themselves tonight in an exhilarating win, I think I'll get around to posting about that meal now. Plus, this tortilla soup is way too good not to share.

    Tostada and tortilla soupTostada and tortilla soup

    Black Bean Bear Tostadas and Tortilla Soup

    For the Tortilla Soup you'll need:

    3 chicken breasts

    1 cup chicken stock

    1 zucchini finely chopped

    1 onion finely chopped

    1-2 jalapenos (depending on how spicy you like it) minced

    2 small tomatoes or 6 cherry tomatoes

    1 red bell pepper

    1 teaspoon cumin

    1 teaspoon garlic powder

    1 can refried beans

    salt and pepper to taste

    2 tablespoons corn flour or corn starch

    For the Black Bean Tostadas you'll need:

    corn tortillas (recipe

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  • User post: Driving Traffic to a Food Blog in 5 Simple Steps


    Eggplants_2Eggplants_2

    As with this beautiful congregation of eggplants, more is always merrier.

    For a fairly new blogger, there's nothing more exciting that logging into Google Analytics to see a big spike in traffic.

    After only seven days of having this little ol' blog up and running, I actually brought in 916 unique visitors in a single day. I swear I'm not bragging. There is a point to all of this.

    How does such a new blog attract so many people? Pull up a chair and listen closely.

    1. FoodGawker, TasteSpotting, PhotoGrazing and other "food porn" sites. I discovered these sites early on and immediately realized their power. Here are a few things to keep in mind when using them:

    - These sites can be very picky with the images they accept. I've already spoken about the virtues of having a good camera, and it's my belief that if you are serious about food blogging, you should invest in one. Food and aesthetic are directly related---it's no coincidence that the most popular and

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Pagination

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