Tag Archives: portland

Passover

This past weekend, we had a Passover themed dinner filled with some truly delicious Jewish food. From fruity-glazed chicken to brussels sprouts, unleavened bread and rugelach everything was so, so good.

It was a beautiful weekend in Portland and we started off our night on the rooftop balcony of Taylor’s apartment complex over looking the city.

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Sunny days in Portland are the absolute best. We live in such a beautiful city and everything shines when the sun comes out.

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We had a lot of fun enjoying the sunshine, cooking together, eating, laughing, singing, talking and describing our ideal men. {I’d tell you more but what happens at FND stays at FND :)} These recipes are so fun and easy to make. All the different flavours combined together beautiful and I absolutely recommend you try your hand at making them!

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Pomegranate Glazed Chicken:
Via

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups pomegranate juice
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 tsp. dried rosemary
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 2 tsp. red wine vinegar
  • 4 bone-in chicken breast halves

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F, with rack in top third. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil; set aside.
  2. Make glaze: In large skillet, combine juices, rosemary, garlic and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Boil over high heat until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 15 minutes, stirring and scraping down side of skillet with a wooden spoon or heatproof spatula. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a liquid measuring cup; stir in vinegar. Reserve cup glaze for serving.
  3. Meanwhile, season chicken with salt and pepper. Place, skin side up, on prepared baking sheet; bake 15 minutes then brush chicken with glaze. Continue baking, brushing chicken with glaze every 5 minutes, until chicken is cooked through, about 15-20 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes, then drizzle with remaining glaze. Serve.

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Haroses: 

Ingredients:

  • 6 grated red apples (skin and core removed)
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup Mogan David wine (or another sweet Jewish wine)
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients together. Refrigerate until ready to eat.

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Honey-Roasted Brussels Sprouts: 

Ingredients:

  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Honey

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange Brussels sprouts on top. Drizzle with honey.
  2. Bake for 25-30 minutes.

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Unleavened Bread: 
Via

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups whole-wheat flour
  • 1 cup white flour
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup oil

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients together.
  2. Roll out to 1/8″ thick and place on greased cookie sheet.
  3. Score into 1-inch squares. Bake at 400°F for about 15 minutes.

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Rugelach:
Via

Ingredients:

Dough:

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon-sized cubes
  • 1 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1 pound regular cream cheese, chilled and cubed
  • 1/4 cup regular sour cream
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • Raw sugar, for decorating

Chocolate Filling: 

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp. butter, melted and cooled
  • if you want to make only chocolate rugelach, double this filling recipe

Strawberry Filling: 

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1lb. strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • if you want to make only strawberry rugelach, double this filling recipe

Ingredients:

Dough: 

  1. Add your cubed butter and flour to your food processor and process for about 30 seconds or so, until the butter is broken up well and the mixture looks like wet sand. Just be sure to work quickly so the butter doesn’t melt. Transfer the butter and flour mixture to a large mixing bowl (the biggest one you’ve got) and add in the salt, cream cheese, and sour cream. Mix everything together quickly, breaking up the cream cheese with your hands and working it well into the flour, until the mixture is crumbly and only pea-sized amounts of cream cheese remain visible. Again, work quickly so that the cream cheese doesn’t warm up too much. A few ribbons of cream cheese are fine; in fact, they will be delicious once baked.
  2. Turn the dough out onto a sheet of foil, press down on it slightly, and form the dough into a thick disk. Wrap the disk tightly in the foil, and chill in the refrigerator for as little as 20 minutes or as long as overnight. While your dough chills, make your filling(s) of choice.
  3. When your dough has chilled, you are ready to fill ‘em and bake ‘em. Preheat your oven to 350°F and line a few baking trays with parchment paper and sprinkle the paper with some raw sugar. Unwrap the dough, divide it into 2 parts, and put one part back in the fridge so it stays cold. Flour your work surface extremely well, then knead the dough a bit to make it less sticky and more maleable. Roll the dough into a ball, then press it down until it’s about ¾-inch thick. The sides may crack a bit at first, but just keep working it until you have a smooth sided disk, adding more flour as needed to keep your hands from sticking to the dough.
  4. Roll the dough out into a 10 to 12-inch circle of even thickness. Fold the dough into a half-moon and use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut away any uneven sides, as you want the circle to be as symmetrical as possible for even cookies. Unfold the dough so it’s a full circle again.
  5. If you are using the chocolate filling, brush the dough with your butter, then sprinkle the chocolate evenly over everything, pressing down a bit to make the chocolate stick. Use a pizza cutter or sharp knife to cut the circle into 16 equal-sized wedges.
  6. Roll the dough up, starting with the bigger side, tightly and carefully, to make the classic rugelach shape. Place the rugelach seam side down onto your parchment. Continue with the rest of your dough, then brush each rugelach with your egg wash and sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake for 15-20 minutes, rotating the trays halfway through baking, until the cookies are a light, golden brown. Allow to cool before moving and serving. These will store well in an airtight container for up to 1 week at room temperature, and will freeze well for up to 3 months.

Chocolate Filling: 

  1. Combine the sugar and cinnamon and chop your chocolate. Melt your butter and let it cool. When you are ready to use, brush the butter over the rolled out rugelach, sprinkle with the cinnamon-sugar mixture, then press the chocolate down evenly over the dough. Roll up and bake.

Strawberry Filling: 

  1. In a medium sized pot, combine the sugar and water. Bring to a simmer, and stir constantly, until the sugar has dissolved completely. Bring the mixture to a simmer again, and without stirring, allow it to simmer for a solid 4 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add in the berries, and stir. Bring the temperature up to medium, and stirring frequently, cook the berries down until thickened, about 15-20 minutes. Use a wooden spoon to mash the berries up a bit. This may look watery at first, but have no fear! It will thicken up.
  2. When the mixture looks thick enough, move the pot to an ice bath and, being careful not to get any cold water into the jam, stir vigorously until the jam has cooled a bit and looks thick. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly over the top of the jam, to protect it from forming a skin, and set aside until ready to use. This makes a great regular ol’ jam, too, if you have leftovers! It will keep well in the fridge for up to 1 week in an airtight container (or a few months if you sterilize the jar you put it in).
  3. When you are ready to use the strawberry filling, spread it out over the rugelach dough (use a light touch, you really don’t want to overfill it as it will seep out and burn to the bottom of the pan/cookies) and bake as directed above.

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IMG_6480Happy eating, everyone!

 

PDX Snowpocalypse 2014

We had big plans for dinner this past week. Mary turned 24 on the 5th and we had a whole classy FND planned to celebrate it with her. Then, the snow came. IMG_6007

Portland rarely gets snow and when we do, we’re so unprepared for it that the whole city basically shuts down. When the snow started falling in the valley Thursday morning we were optimistic we’d still be able to have our dinner. However, it didn’t stop falling all day Thursday and most of Friday. With many of us stuck in our houses/apartments we made the decision to postpone Mary’s celebration.

And boy, am I glad we did. I’ve got at least 6-7 inches of snow at my house after snow Thursday-Saturday and after an ice storm last night there is now a thick layer of ice on top.

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I’d already made her birthday dinner dessert (“Mary” macarons) so instead of letting them go to waste, my family and I have been chowing down on them, sorry Mary!

This weather did provide the perfect opportunity for some snowy pictures, so I’ll leave you all with some of those 🙂

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Around the World!

Hello! This week’s dinner was so much fun. We had lots of delicious food from around the world, some great conversation, and a very special guest. Despite the ridiculous number of mosquito bites we all woke up with Saturday morning, we all had such a wonderful night.

I turned 23 on the 22nd, so this was the dinner in which we celebrated that and we did it well. Mary and Taylor were “business partners” for the day and made a beautiful birthday cake (recipe below) complete with candles and they led the group in a pretty solid rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’.

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Anyway, I’m sure you’re all dying to know who our special guest this week was, right? Let me set this up for you. I got a text from Taylor on Wednesday saying we’d have a guest joining us for dinner and who it was. I thought it would be fun to surprise the FND crew so I told them we’d have someone coming to dinner, but didn’t tell them who it was. It was going to be a surprise until this guest showed up to dinner, but Taylor cracked and told Mary when they were going about their birthday cake business, so when the rest of the crew got to dinner on Friday, I had to tell them who it was. Our special guest? Andrew, the sous chef at Ox, a restaurant here in Portland that was recently named restaurant of the year. No pressure, right? Just a professional chef coming to join us for dinner, bringing his own amazing food and eating our not-so-professional (but still delicious) food. Obviously, we had nothing to worry about because our food is always so good 🙂 It was fun to talk to Andrew though and really get an idea of what his like as a chef is like (it’s crazy. He basically runs on little-to-no sleep).

Andrew decided to take on Mexico for his contribution for this week’s dinner and he made some killer guacamole, salsa, and tortilla chips. We haven’t got the recipes for those yet, but as soon as we do I’ll post them here. In the meantime, check out the other feature recipes we had this week!

Spanish Tortilla (Spain): 

Via The Best International Recipe from the editors of Cook’s Illustrated

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1lb. russet potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/8-inch thick rounds
  • 1 medium onion, halved and sliced 1/8-inch thick
  • Salt
  • 10 large eggs
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 425°F. Heat the oil in a 10-inch ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add the potatoes, onion and 1/2 tsp. salt and stir to coat thoroughly. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes and onion are soft, 8-10 minutes.
  2. Whisk the eggs, pepper, and 1 tsp. salt together until uniformly yellow. Pour the eggs over the potatoes, stir gently to combine, and continue to cook until the eggs begin to set, about 1 minute.
  3. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the eggs are cooked, the top is puffed, and the edges have pulled away slightly from the sides of the pan, about 9 minutes. Use a rubber spatula to loosen the tortilla from the skillet, the carefully slide in on to a carving board. Slice into wedges/squares and serve with salsa brava (recipe below). The tortilla can be made up to 4 hours in advance and served at room temperature.
Spanish Tortilla

Spanish Tortilla

Ground Turkey Pie (England): 

Ingredients:

  • Pre-made frozen pie crust
  • 1 small onion
  • 5-6 button mushrooms
  • 2/3 lb ground turkey (or any other ground meat)
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (we used Mozzarella)

Directions:

  1. Dice the onion and mushrooms.
  2. Saute onion and mushrooms for 2 minutes. Add meat and a few splashes of Worcestershire sauce, saute until meat is browned.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. If your pie crust is straight out of the freezer, put it in the oven to defrost as the oven preheats.
  4. Whisk 3 eggs with milk. Add salt and pepper, whatever other seasonings you like.
  5. Take pie crust out of freezer. Spread most of the meat and vegetables in a thick layer at the bottom of the pie crust. Add a layer of shredded cheese.
  6. Add the rest of the meat and vegetables on top. Add another cheese layer.
  7. Pour the egg mixture on top, slowly, spreading it as evenly as possible. It should cover most of the ingredients in the crust but not completely submerge them. If you think there’s too little egg for all your ingredients, you’re probably right. Whisk another egg with a splash of milk and pour that on top too.
  8. Cook for 30 minutes. If you’ve added another egg, you may need to cook for longer. Let cool for 10-15 minutes before eating.

Ratatouille (France):

Via

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. dried parsley
  • 1 eggplant, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 zucchini, sliced
  • 1 large onion, sliced into rings
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat bottom and sides of a 1 1/2 quart casserole dish with 1 tablespoon olive oil.
  2. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir garlic until lightly browned. Mix in parsley and eggplant. Cook and stir until eggplant is soft, about 10 minutes. Season with salt to taste.
  3. Spread eggplant mixture evenly across bottom of prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle with a few tablespoons of Parmesan cheese. Spread zucchini in an even layer over top. Lightly salt and sprinkle with a little more cheese. Continue layering in this fashion, with onion, mushrooms, bell pepper, and tomatoes, covering each layer with a sprinkling of salt and cheese.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes.
Ratatouille

Ratatouille

Bruschetta with Tomato and Basil (Italy):

Via

Ingredients:

  • 6 or 7 ripe plum tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 6-8 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 baguette French or Italian bread
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Directions:

  1. Prepare the tomatoes first. Parboil the tomatoes for one minute in boiling water that has just been removed from the burner. Drain. Using a sharp small knife, remove the skins of the tomatoes. (If the tomatoes are too hot, you can protect your finger tips by rubbing them with an ice cube between tomatoes.) Once the tomatoes are peeled, cut them in halves or quarters and remove the seeds and juice from their centers. Also cut out and discard the stem area. Why use plum tomatoes instead of regular tomatoes? The skins are much thicker and there are fewer seeds and less juice.
  2. Make sure there is a top rack in place in your oven. Turn on the oven to 450°F to preheat.
  3. While the oven is heating, chop up the tomatoes finely. Put tomatoes, garlic, 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, vinegar in a bowl and mix. Add the chopped basil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Slice the baguette on a diagonal about 1/2 inch thick slices. Coat one side of each slice with olive oil using a pastry brush. Place on a cooking sheet, olive oil side down. You will want to toast them in the top rack in your oven, so you may need to do these in batches depending on the size of your oven. Once the oven has reached 450°F, place a tray of bread slices in the oven on the top rack. Toast for 5-6 minutes, until the bread just begins to turn golden brown.
    Alternatively, you can toast the bread without coating it in olive oil first. Toast on a griddle for 1 minute on each side. Take a sharp knife and score each slice 3 times. Rub some garlic in the slices and drizzle half a teaspoon of olive oil on each slice. This is the more traditional method of making bruschetta.
  5. Align the bread on a serving platter, olive oil side up. Either place the tomato topping in a bowl separately with a spoon for people to serve themselves over the bread, or place some topping on each slice of bread and serve. If you top each slice with the tomatoes, do it right before serving or the bread may get soggy.

Melitzanosalata (Greece): 

Via

Ingredients:

  • 2 large eggplants
  • 3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Italian parsley, chopped
  • Salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Use a fork to prick the eggplants all over.  Put them on a baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes.  Remove and drain on a paper towel if needed.  Let cool until they can be handled.  Cut them in half and scoop all the insides out into a food processor.  Add minced garlic and lemon juice.  Pulse a few times to combine.  Continue to pulse while adding a steady stream of olive oil.  Stir in parsley, salt and pepper.

    Around the World

    Around the World

Best Birthday Cake (USA): 

Via

Ingredients:

Cake: 

  • 4 cups plus 2 tbsp. cake flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 cups buttermilk, well shaken

Frosting: 

  • 15oz. semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 1/4 tsp. instant espresso (optional)
  • 2 1/4 cups sour cream, at room temperature
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 3/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions:

Cake: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter two 9-inch round cake pans and line with circles of parchment paper, then butter parchment.
  2. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until pale and fluffy, then beat in vanilla. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well and scraping down the bowl after each addition. At low speed, beat in buttermilk until just combined (mixture will look curdled). Add flour mixture in three batches, mixing until each addition is just Incorporated.
  3. Spread batter evenly in cake pan, then rap pan on counter several times to eliminate air bubbles. Bake until golden and a wooden pick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack 10 minutes, then run a knife around edge of pan. Invert onto rack and discard parchment, then cool completely, about 1 hour.

Frosting: 

  1. Combine the chocolate and espresso powder, if using, in the top of a double-boiler or in a heatproof bowl over simmering water. Stir until the chocolate is melted. (Alternately, you can melt the chocolate in a microwave for 30 seconds, stirring well, and then heating in 15 second increments, stirring between each, until the chocolate is melted.) Remove from heat and let chocolate cool until tepid.
  2. Whisk together the sour cream, 1/4 cup of the corn syrup and vanilla extract until combined. Add the tepid chocolate slowly and stir quickly until the mixture is uniform. Taste for sweetness, and if needed, add additional corn syrup in one tablespoon increments until desired level of sweetness is achieved.
  3. Let cool in the refrigerator until the frosting is a spreadable consistency. This should not take more than 30 minutes. Should the frosting become too thick or stiff, just leave it out until it softens again.
Best Birthday Cake

Best Birthday Cake

Happy eating, everyone!

P.S. Stay tuned for another post later today. I gave Taylor another baking lesson yesterday and she killed it.

One Ingredient: Cinnamon

Whoa! It feels like so long since our last FND post! We’ve had a crazy couple of weeks with life kind of taking over with vacations, Timbers games, Thorns games, work, and pretty much any thing else you can think of. We all had a great time with our various activities, but it was nice to get back to our good ol’ Friday Night Dinners.

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The title of this post is probably a little misleading. We didn’t actually sit around eating sticks of cinnamon all night. Don’t get me wrong, I love cinnamon, but that would just be too much of a good thing. The idea behind this theme (Mary’s superstar idea) was that every dish we made had to include cinnamon in it whether it was 1/4 tsp. or multiple sticks of this delicious spice.

Dinner was a hit. Mary made a wonderful vinaigrette to go along with her home-grown vegetables, Annie made a fragrant cinnamon applesauce, Taylor made a rice dish with a sprinkling of cinnamon and some other colourful spices and I made some cinnamon sugar pull-apart bread that had my kitchen smelling amazing.

We had such a fun night. I was struggling after the PRP treatment I had for my knee and the medicine my doctor gave me for the pain (he was right, this has been a rough weekend), but these ladies (& Antonio) were so great making me laugh and getting my mind off my knee for a couple of hours. I can’t thank them enough. Best friends ever. We chatted about all of the exciting things coming up for all of us this month and started planning Annie & Antonio’s wedding (no, they aren’t engaged yet, but don’t judge us. We’re girls. And Antonio was more than willing to answer all of our questions :))

Now, check out the recipes we used. Everything was delicious so I highly recommend running to your kitchen after you read these (and drool over the photos) and make something cinnamon-y! Enjoy!

Salad with Honey-Cinnamon Vinaigrette: 

Via

Ingredients:

Salad: 

  • Lettuce
  • Dried cranberries
  • Tomatoes, chopped
  • Slivered almonds

Vinaigrette:

  • 1/3 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup canola oil

Directions:

  1. (Vinaigrette): Whisk together first 5 ingredients in a small bowl. Add oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until smooth. Serve immediately, or cover and chill until ready to serve.
  2. Toss lettuce, tomatoes, cranberries and almonds together with the vinaigrette and serve.
Honey-Cinnamon Vinaigrette

Honey-Cinnamon Vinaigrette

Cinnamon Applesauce: 

Ingredients:

  • 7 Golden Delicious or Gala apples, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 slices lemon peel
  • 2 cinnamon sticks

Directions:

  1. In 6-quart stockpot or Dutch oven, place all ingredients. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low; cook uncovered 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until apples are tender.
  2. Remove from heat; discard lemon peel and cinnamon sticks. Let apple mixture cool slightly, about 10 minutes; puree in a food processor, blender, or mash with a potato masher. Serve warm or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Cinnamon Applesauce

Cinnamon Applesauce

Mejadra:

Via Jerusalem: A Cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi, Sami Tamimi

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups green or brown lentils
  • 4 medium onions
  • 1 cup sunflower oil
  • 2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. coriander seeds
  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • Salt and black pepper

Directions:

  1. Place the lentils in a small saucepan, cover with plenty of water, bring to a boil, and cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until the lentils have softened but still have a little bite. Drain and set aside.
  2. Peel the onions and slice thinly. Place on a large flat plate, sprinkle with the flour and 1 teaspoon salt, and mix well with your hands. Heat the sunflower oil in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan placed over high heat. Make sure the oil is hot by throwing in a small piece of onion; it should sizzle vigorously. Reduce the heat to medium-high and carefully (it may spit!) add one-third of the sliced onion. Fry for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally with a slotted spoon, until the onion takes on a nice golden brown color and turns crispy (adjust the temperature so the onion doesn’t fry too quickly and burn). Use the spoon to transfer the onion to a colander lined with paper towels and sprinkle with a little more salt. Do the same with the other two batches of onion; add a little extra oil if needed.
  3. Wipe the saucepan in which you fried the onion clean and put in the cumin and coriander seeds. Place over medium heat and toast the seeds for a minute or two. Add the rice, olive oil, turmeric, allspice, cinnamon, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and plenty of black pepper. Stir to coat the rice with the oil and then add the cooked lentils and the water. Bring to a boil, cover with a lid, and simmer over very low heat for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat, lift off the lid, and quickly cover the pan with a clean tea towel. Seal tightly with the lid and set aside for 10 minutes.
  5. Finally, add half the fried onion to the rice and lentils and stir gently with a fork. Pile the mixture in a shallow serving bowl and top with the rest of the onion.
Mejadra

Mejadra

Cinnamon Sugar Pull-Apart Bread: 

Via

Ingredients:

Dough:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 1/4 tsp. (1 envelope) active dry yeast
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 ounces (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Filling: 

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 2 ounces (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted until browned

Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl whisk together 2 cups flour, sugar, yeast, and salt.  Set aside.
  2. Whisk together eggs and set aside.
  3. In a small saucepan, melt together milk and butter until butter has just melted.  Remove from the heat and add water and vanilla extract.  Let mixture stand for a minute or two, or until the mixture registers 115 to 125°F.
  4. Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a spatula.  Add the eggs and stir the mixture until the eggs are incorporated into the batter.  The eggs will feel soupy and it’ll seem like the dough and the eggs are never going to come together.  Keep stirring.  Add the remaining 3/4 cup of flour and stir with the spatula for about 2 minutes.  The mixture will be sticky.  That’s just right.
  5. Place the dough is a large,  greased bowl.  Cover with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel.  Place in a warm space and allow to rest until doubled in size, about 1 hour.  *The dough can be risen until doubled in size, then refrigerated overnight for use in the morning.  If you’re using this method, just let the dough rest on the counter for 30 minutes before following the roll-out directions below.
  6. While the dough rises, whisk together the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg for the filling.  Set aside.  Melt 2 ounces of butter until browned.  Set aside.  Grease and flour a 9x5x3-inch  loaf pan.  Set that aside too.
  7. Deflate the risen dough and knead about 2 tablespoons of flour into the dough.  Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 5 minutes.  On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin to roll the dough out.  The dough should be 12-inches tall and about 20-inches long.  If you can’t get the dough to 20-inches long… that’s okay.  Just roll it as large as the dough will go.  Use a pastry brush to spread melted butter across all of the dough.  Sprinkle with all of the sugar and cinnamon mixture.
  8. Slice the dough vertically, into six equal-sized strips.  Stack the strips on top of one another and slice the stack into six equal slices once again.  You’ll have six stacks of six squares.  Layer the dough squares in the loaf pan like a flip-book.  Place a kitchen towel over the loaf pan and allow in a warm place for 30 to 45 minutes or until almost doubled in size.
  9. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350°F.  Place loaf in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is very golden brown.  The top may be lightly browned, but the center may still be raw.  A nice, dark, golden brown will ensure that the center is cooked as well.
  10. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 20 to 30 minutes.   Run a butter knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the bread and invert onto  a clean board.  Place a cake stand or cake plate on top of the  upside down loaf, and carefully invert so it’s right side up.  Serve warm with coffee or tea.
Cinnamon Sugar Pull-Apart Bread

Cinnamon Sugar Pull-Apart Bread

YUM

YUM

Happy eating, everyone!

Friday Night Dinner Field Trip: ¡Oba!

Dinner was a little different than normal this week. Instead of picking out a theme and cooking Mary, Annie, Taylor and I decided to use the money we got from our article in MIX and treat ourselves to a girls night. Best decision ever.

We went to ¡Oba!, a restaurant specializing in Nuevo Latino cuisine and it was amazing. Everything was so fragrant and delicious and pretty. Pretty is probably a weird way to describe food, but it really was just so, so pretty.

Over blood orange margaritas we celebrated new jobs, apartments, doctors, schools and our friendship. People always think it’s weird that we’re still best friends with our friends from high school but I seriously couldn’t imagine my life without these wonderful ladies.

Best Friends

Best Friends

But back to ¡Oba!. If you’re going there you have to order the tableside guacamole. It’s delicious and they literally make it right in front of you. What could be better?! They serve both tapas and main dishes, so we went for a combination of the two and it was perfect. We had bacon wrapped stuffed jalapeños (to die for), scallop ceviche, vaca frita, and butternut squash enchiladas with the most amazing walnut sauce. If it was socially appropriate to do so we probably would have licked it right off the plate. Yeah. It was that good.

It was such a great night and I would highly recommend that if you’re ever in the Portland area you check out ¡Oba!.

Happy eating, everyone!

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