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Happy Holiday’s

12 Dec
We hope to begin food blogging again after January 1st!
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Kitchen in the Market

28 Jul

My new favorite place to hang out recently is Kitchen in the Market at Midtown Global Market. Kitchen in the Market is an interactive commercial kitchen space.  In addition, they offer cooking classes, host special food events and are all around an amazing place.

Owners are the beautiful and talented Molly Hermann of Taste Bud Tart and Tracy Morgan of  Segnavia Creative. Molly and Tracy make an incredible team and I love hearing all the new fun things they are coming up with every time I stop by.

Another reason Kitchen in the Market is so wonderful is that it takes a bit of the mystique out of a commercial kitchen. For people like me, that may be a bit intimidated by professional chefs and trying to throw a decent meal together KITM helps to make it more accessible.

They also have an amazing deli/refrigerated case that is always full of different yummy stuff made by the chefs who are using the space. Since the chefs who use the space are in and out the stuff in the deli case is almost always changing, but looks amazing every time I visit.

KITM also has a shop which is stocked with spices, kitchen tools and more. The website says it perfectly, “It’s a shop for cooks – inspired by chefs.”

Now, back to the classes I mentioned earlier. There are a range of classes from  Cooking the Market, where you are able to utilize the grocery stores in Midtown from Kids cooking classes for many age groups.  Plus, who doesn’t want a free karaoke cooking demo? I thought so, go book now!

Life Lessons Learned From Blogging

26 Jul

I’ve been blogging for just over half a year now, and it occurs to me how much I’ve learned in that time. Not only just about food, which has been amazing but additionally I’ve made a fabulous connection to the newly formed #MNFoodBloogers Group, who I LOVE.

Never in a million years did I think I would find such a wonderful, supportive, smart, fun group of people when I started this blog. (I’ve given a shout out to a few of them in my earlier food blogger posts.) I feel incredibly blessed to be a part of this amazing community and I enjoy learning from so many of them.

Plus, if I thought I was a foodie BEFORE, I realize now how much more I have to learn and how truly fun it is to talk to others who are passionate about food.(And I mean REALLY PASSIONATE.) I’ve also enjoyed trying new foods, like Lamb Brain from Saffron (pictured above).

I originally started this blog after taking a career assessment. This assessment indicated many things but the strongest career path that emerged was a chef. At first I laughed, because I don’t cook well under stress in my kitchen, much less trying to run a restaurant, but it got me thinking. I realized that food is a very big part of my life. I always blamed the big Italian family for making food a priority, or the fact that I’m “food motivated” but really underneath all that is a genuine passion and interest in food, the food systems, nutrition and trying new things.

Through this whole process I’ve rekindled my joy of cooking for my family as well. As I’ve mentioned I’m not very good at cooking under pressure as of yet, although, with more practice I’ve become better and better. I do however, really enjoy cooking Italian family recipes from scratch, the ones that take 4-5 hours to complete. I’m also determined to perfect my whole wheat bread recipe. I’ve made it a personal goal to begin to share recipes from my Italian family, and maybe a few from my husband’s family, if they aren’t all trade secrets.

Additionally, I’m embarking on an adventure to try to cook one new recipe a week. Because of all my talented Food Blogger peers, I have my choice of where to begin, but from reading many other foodie blogs I’ve discovered so many recipes that look easy, tasty and healthy, all of which are important to me. (I’ll be posting my adventures, which hopefully end up more successful than not.)

Favorite Foodie Blogs – Part 2

29 Jun

There are so very many talented, inspiring food bloggers that I have come to know recently that I’m not even sure I cam sum it up in two posts. I fully expect there to be a part three forthcoming or possibly just having a regular update of blogs I’ve discovered and love.

  • Shaina of Food For My Family. Shaina is amazing. I know she hates it  when I pour on the platitudes, so in lieu of that, just go to her blog and be amazed. Never again will you wonder what to make for dinner, read and be inspired!

  • Relishing It Laurie is so fantastic. She makes cooking look both simple and easy and has almost convinced me I want to give it a try on a regular basis, almost!

  •  Jenny and Will at Hao Chi who have divided their site in to restaurants, cooking, and favorites and since I’m interested in both their restaurant reviews and what they are cooking at home I often spend a great deal of time catching up on this blog.

  • Amy Peterson at Green Your Plate, I don’t need to say much more. The name tells you what you need to know. Veggies are our friends, Amy just helps you to see it that way. Most of the folks who read my blog are already converted, but I love this blog I learn something every time I read it. Also, Amy is a fantastic photographer, and has done a great job documenting our #MNFoodBloggers events

  • Crystal of Cafe Cyan is also amazing and like Amy, she posts the most delicious veggie based recipes, and let’s face it, she’s a total hoot in person!  Read her blog and fall in love.

  • Thyme in our Kitchen‘s Matt just celebrated his one year anniversary of Blogging! Congrats Matt!  He is a thoughtful writer who ties family and life into his posts and he is also a skilled photographer. His posts are beautiful and they make me want to taste everything he makes.
Next post of  amazing food bloggers up soon!

Figs

27 Jun

I’m embarrassed to say that up until a few years ago I’d never really eaten a fig. Aside from an occasional fig newton, I didn’t give them much thought, until I went over to a friend’s house and she was serving them with goat cheese and prosciutto. They were spectacular, and I promptly stuffed my face. Then I went to my local grocery store and was disappointed to find out that not only do most stores not carry them, but secondly if you do find them they are only in season for a short time, at least in MN.

So tonight, I’m wandering though Whole Foods trying to decide what to eat, and whamo! There are the figs. I think I actually danced in the aisle. But they are so yummy. Even my 14 month old thought they were pretty good stuff, my seven-year old told me they were too sweet. ( this from the kid that will eat an entire bowl of ice cream if left to her own devices.)

This is what we made with them tonight.

Sliced mozzarella

Sliced Figs

Toasted Baguette

and a generous helping of prosciutto.

Nutrition Labels

1 Jun

This has to be hands down the funniest “nutrition statement” I have ever read.

But they have a point. I for one like my ice cream to taste like ice cream. Not watered down, low-fat ice slush. Bottom line, ice cream isn’t low-calorie or full of vitamins. Remember ice cream is amazing, but it’s all about the portion sizes. At least that’s my personal mantra. Enjoy!

Masu – Part Two – Dinner

25 Apr

Long overdue part two.

Dinner.

It was a whole different feel than lunch plus two kids for upscale dinner always adds a level of complication. Additionally, of course we came opening night so it was also pretty busy. Our server was very attentive, some might even say a bit too attentive, but he meant well, so no harm.

We started with Edamame and an order of the Japanese snacks, which of course my eldest looked down her nose at. (Then again she had an incident with a wasabi covered pea when she was about three and is still holding a grudge.)

I ordered sashimi which was good, including hotate (scallop) tamago (sweet egg omelet) and my favorite at the moment, ama ebi (sweet shrimp) which some with the fried heads as well, which are delicious!

We also had the home-made duck pot stickers, which were great, they were much more delicate than most gyoza you commonly get in restaurants, since very few actually go to the trouble to make them from scratch.

My husband got the pork belly ramen, which as you know from my earlier post, I am a big fan of.

Chef Hesse and Chef McKee were very helpful and personable, while also balancing that with efficient service and seemed to have a complete handle on everything that was going on. I would expect nothing less of two with their experience, however, I was still impressed, because like I mentioned it was their first public dinner service for Masu.

If I hadn’t known that however, nothing in anyone’s actions would have tipped me off. Most everything ran smoothly and they were very quick to work out any kinks (like the fact that their high chairs hadn’t arrived, but they were able to find us one, from somewhere to get us through dinner, which I really appreciated.)

The rest of the photos are just ambiance shots because I really liked the atmosphere. It’s a bit more artistic and playful that many of the other Japanese places in town.

I look forward to my next visit to Masu. Maybe I’ll see you there for lunch?