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Foodie Friday



I’m taking you back to New York City for one last delicious post. Chef Dave Pasternak recently opened Barchetta in Chelsea and it should be on your list to visit this summer if you are in the city. They are known for their crudo flight (in Italian, crudo just means raw), but every single bite we ate that night was ridiculously good.

It was a gorgeous night, so we walked from our hotel, which just adds a little something special to date night. Nobody walks anywhere in Los Angeles. It’s sort of an inside joke.

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What to Have for Breakfast on Thanksgiving Morning

Breakfast on Thanksgiving morning is always a conundrum for me. You need something that will tie you over, yet not kill your appetite for the mid day feast. This Frittata has become a weekend staple in our house. It’s a spin on Jamie Oliver’s Potato and Chorizo Omelet. Though I really like the original Jamie Oliver version, I have since played around with a lot of sausage flavors, herbs, cheese etc. and it’s hard to go wrong. What I never change is the simple lemon and olive oil dressing on top. That really makes the dish pop. The best part is that it’s just as good the next day, so make it the night before and reheat it in the morning while you’re busy basting the turkey.


Sausage, Rosemary & Parmesan Frittata

*Feeds 4-6
8-12 eggs-note: depending on how big your cast iron skillet is, you can adjust the number of eggs. My pan is large and I usually only use 8 eggs, which just means my frittata is thinner.
Freshly grated Parmesan
1/2 lb of sausage-use any flavor you like such as chorizo, hot Italian, sage, regular pork sausage
2-3 springs fresh rosemary
1 shallot
Juice from one lemon
5 tbsp olive oil
Salt & Pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat a cast iron skillet on the stove top. Add one tablespoon of olive oil. Cook the sausage in the cast iron skillet, breaking it up in to small bite sized pieces. While the sausage cooks, lightly beat 8-10 eggs in a small bowl and set aside. When the sausage is cooked through, remove from the pan onto a paper towel. While the skillet is still hot, sprinkle the leaves from 2-3 sprigs of rosemary into the pan. It will start to sizzle right away. After about a minute, add the beaten eggs to the skillet. Turn off the heat. Add the sausage back in, spreading it out evenly. Grate as much fresh Parmesan cheese on top as you like. Using a spatula, give it a light stir so some of the cheese gets mixed in. Put the cast iron skillet in the oven and bake for about 15-20 minutes or until it is puffed up and lightly golden around the edges.

While the frittata cooks, make the dressing, whisking together 4 tbsp olive oil with the juice from one small lemon. Dice a small shallot and add to the lemon/olive oil mixture. Finish with salt & pepper.

When the frittata is done, remove from oven, cut  and serve with the dressing drizzled on top.

I recommend serving this dish alone, so you save room for turkey! It’s the perfect amount.


Parc it Right Here

I’m sure there are many more acclaimed, trendy, newer places to dine right now in Philly—after all, my brother-in-law’s very significant other just spotted Anthony Bourdain filming his show The Layover with Marc Vetri. (If you must know, they were filming at Amis, but Alla Spina is newer and has received rave reviews) But, I digress.  With the spectacular weather we had on our visit a few weeks ago, there was no better choice than Parc. And honestly, thanks to the pounds of butter, I can definitively say that these were the best moule frites I have ever eaten. So there!

Parc is one of several restaurants lining the Rittenhouse Square Park, a very upscale neighboorhood with the city’s best shopping. They are all set up in that very Parisian style, where diners all face the sidewalk for enjoyable views and people watching.

Park view across the street.

One big ole bowl of mussles drowning in a broth so insanely buttery, it should be bottled and sold as a drug.

Is that a Bloody Mary you spy in the background? Yes it is. Stop judging.

Parc.  227 S.  18th Street.  Philadelphia, PA.  19103.  212-545-2262

Sons of Essex

Sons of Essex

Oh YOU know I love a speakeasy type restaurant located through a “deli” that feels like a secret club. Oh yes, I do! Last Saturday night after a day at the museum, oysters and cocktails with my sister-in-law, her hubby and baby (in a bar!—Quick, what movie?), it was time for a grown up night out on the town. I chose Sons of Essex, because well, the lower east side is where it’s at these days. Or, so I hear.

Peak thru the window and you’ll see what looks like a sandwich shop, where you order at the counter type place. That’s what it is until you give your name to the “bouncer” and he opens the magical door.

Then, you find this. A booming restaurant, where all the cool kids hang out. Named after the Sons of Liberty, the group of American Patriots who protected the colonists (and the lower east side) from those dirty Brits (oh, you know I love ya).

I’m not very much of a late night owl, so our 8pm dinner was a tad on the early side for said cool kids, but by the time we ordered, the place was packed.

What to order…what to order.

Being Southern, it’s hard for me to resist BBQ ribs. And they were DELICIOUS! It’s not all about the atmosphere here, it’s also about the food.  They were damn good.

But for all you veggie lovers, never fear. They had these roasted brussel sprouts filled to the brim. They made me feel less guilty.

Grand Sachem Cockatil

Or maybe that was the cocktail.

Regardless, my hubby and I had a great night out and even made friends with the couple next to us, who were having a rare night away from their seven month old. They were from New York. He was in finance. She, in fashion. So, between the four of us, we made one  big ole New York/Los Angeles cliché.  Thankfully, they let us stay. Even though we played down our Gangs of New York vibe.

Wanna make the cocktail I had? You should, it was awesome! Click the photo above for a video on how to do it.

Sons of Essex. 133 Essex Street. New York, NY. 212.674-7100

baco mercat

Foodie Friday: Bäco Mercat

You may remember a few months ago, I went to the Art Walk. And while downtown, we tried Bäco Mercat for dinner. I’m not sure if it was my mood, my headache or my juvenile refusal to be wowed, but I left thinking “meh”…I’ve had better. And then I stomped my feet and had a tantrum ;).  Well, I went back for their signature bäco and I owe them an apology for those thoughts I had (even if I kept them to myself). And now, I give you the Bäco in 3 Acts.

Act One: “The Original”

The waiter insists (as a first timer) you try the original bäco, which is then placed delicately in front of you. Your eyebrow raises and you think…Phff, how expected, vapid, obvious. A flatbread sandwich. 

Act Two: A Better Look

You rotate your plate and get a glimpse inside. Interesting (you think). A piece of Succulent pork tumbles out as their homemade  salbitxada oozes slowly down the vibrant greenery and puddles just under a bright red tomato. You try to ignore it. Then you spy the beef carnitas. The other eyebrow raises. You’re curious. 

Act Three: A Love Story

You take a bite. Ohhh! Mmmm! Mmmmmmmmmm! Your hands are disgustingly messy. You don’t care. You take another bite. What IS that salbitxada?? (if you must know it’s a Catalan sauce traditionally served with calçots known to us as spring onions). You wipe your hands on your napkin. You take bite after bite without stopping for a breath. Or a conversation. You ask for more napkins. You are dizzy with euphoria. Drunk on flavor. Gobsmacked with the realization that you are in love…

With a flatbread sandwich.

The End.

Bäco Mercat.  408 S. Main Street. Los Angeles,  CA 90013.  213-687-8808


Foodie Friday: Easter Brunch Rolls

My friend Jenn’s mom made these yummy ham and cheese brunch rolls

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for her bridal shower a few years ago and I begged for the recipe. They’re sweet. They’re savory. They’re so drool-worthy, they’ve become my Easter tradition. Well, that and KFC (don’t judge). Perfect for a potluck, I promise these will be the party favorite (except for the crazy neighbor dressed up like the Easter Bunny). But really, who wants to top that?

Easter Brunch Rolls 12-count package of King’s Hawaiian dinner rolls 1/2 lb thick sliced deli ham 1/2 lb thin sliced swiss cheese 1 stick butter 1 tablespoon Worchestershire sauce 1 tablespoon yellow mustard 1 tablespoon poppy seeds 2 tablespoons brown sugar

Directions: Split rolls. Layer ham and cheese onto rolls. (I cut swiss cheese slices into quarters and put 2 slices on bottom of the bun and two on top so that each roll has 1 slice of cheese, and I use 1 slice of thin ham per sandwich.) Arrange filled rolls into a 9″ x 13″ pan. Combine the remaining ingredients in a saucepan, bring to a boil. Mix well and pour over rolls. Let stand for 1-2 hours in the refrigerator if time allows. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and rolls are crusty. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Happy Easter!