Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! I've been spending the past week baking more cookies that I thought we could eat (although they've been slowly disappearing, so I may be wrong with my assessment). I had hoped to post some cookie recipes before Christmas, but the time got away from me. There will definitely be recipes before the new year, though!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Bagel Action Figures, and other amazing things from Finagle a Bagel

I've been a fan of Finagle a Bagel since I took a small class on bagels at their now-defunct Coolidge Corner shop a year or so ago. Someone from their headquarters in Newton showed us how to make bagel dough, then they took us into the back of the shop to boil, top, and bake our own half dozen. I tried their chunky vegetable bagel that day and totally fell in love.

But I'm loving Finagle even more now. They've released a bunch of webisodes, available on their website and on YouTube, featuring five guys in the baking plant. They all made me laugh, but Action Figures and Schmears were by far the funniest. Watch the first two below, then watch the rest at the Finagle a Bagel website.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Blogging By Mail: Indulge Me

It's been over a year since the last Blogging By Mail, hosted by the wonderful Stephanie at Dispensing Happiness. This time around, the theme was "Indulge Me" - at such a hectic time of year, this is the perfect way to pamper yourself a little bit.

Amidst my haze of the flu (Captain Trips, as I've taken to calling it), a small box arrived for me. I quickly opened the box, and for such a small package, it was jam packed with goodies. Arlene from the Food of Love put together a wonderful assortment of goodies to keep me comfy and cozy this winter. Her card, with a fun spa theme, kicked it all off, and the spa theme continued with an espresso chai candle, a rose bath bomb from Lush, banana coconut soap (it smells like a tropical drink!), a soothing eye pillow, scrubby bath gloves, and of course, some chocolate to enjoy in the bath. I think I'm going to wait for our next snow storm to take advantage of all of this (well, maybe not the chocolate...).

Arlene's site has tons of delicious recipes, including lots of comfort foods and a whole slew of recipes with Weight Watchers points (which I'm sure I'll be paying attention to come January). Check it out!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Cheap Eats: Pizzeria Dante

Sometimes a restaurant's decor can be misleading. We've all been to places that seem fancy but serve up mediocre food. In the case of Pizzeria Dante in Coolidge Corner, the exact opposite is true - it may look like any other brightly lit pizzeria, but the food choices prove that there's more going on in the kitchen.

Dante's pizza is built on basics: a chewy dough with just enough crunch on the bottom, a tomatoey tomato sauce, and plenty of cheese that's not too greasy. Unusual toppings only add to the fantastic basics. The Rabe pizza is topped with bitter broccoli rabe, sweet Italian sausage, and roasted red peppers. The LA pizza is covered in thin slices of potato, bacon, and scallions (although why it's named LA is beyond us). And the Bianco features black olives, breaded eggplant slices, and some of the creamiest, sweetest ricotta we've had.

Pizzeria Dante also offers other tasty Italian dishes. This Bostonist really loved their arancini, homemade rice balls mixed with peas, shredded carrots, ground beef, and plenty of mozzarella cheese. For $5, the serving of arancini was huge and filling and sated our need for warm comfort food. To end your meal, try a scoop of gelato, piled high in little tubs next to the register, just like in Italy (or the North End).

Pizzeria Dante is located at 1398 Beacon Street in Brookline. They are open Monday through Saturday, 11:30am to 10pm, and Sunday, noon to 9pm.

Originally published on Bostonist.

Pizzeria Dante on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Only Cure for Swine Flu... is Bacon

Aaaand I'm back! I've spent the past week or so holed up in my room, going through about 12 trees-worth of Puffs tissues (with lotion, of course, which is why I still have a nose), a million gallons of tea (I think I've reduced our tea supply by half, which is saying something), 6 two-liters of diet 7-UP and about 3 liters of Trader Joe's knockoff Smart Water, four and a half seasons of Supernatural, and a complete project for my mother's birthday. The swine flu was not pleasant, and I'll probably have this cough until April, when the weather finally clears up, but I made it through alive! And what better way to celebrate than with some bacon?

I originally made this candied bacon back in August, when my brother brought me a pound of bacon after watching Paula Deen make candied bacon with maple syrup. I nixed the syrup in favor of brown sugar and ended up with an easy and delicious treat. The bacon by itself is pretty hardcore - sweet and salty, crunchy and chewy, and pretty much just amazing. But you really can't eat much of it, and I found myself left with a ton of the stuff. I ended up chopping it up and adding it to my chocolate chip cookie recipe (just replace the cherries with the chopped candied bacon) for just a hint of salt and smoke.

You could, of course, also serve it as a garnish to your bacon vodka.

Note: When baking my bacon, I lined my rimmed baking sheet with tin foil and then topped with parchment paper. This may seem excessive, but it helped contain the mess and was worth it when it came to clean up.

Candied Bacon, inspired by David Lebovitz
1 package thick-cut bacon
brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350°. Line a rimmed baking sheet with tin foil, then with parchment paper. Arrange bacon slices on parchment so that they are not touching. Sprinkle brown sugar on the top of each slice. Bake for 10-12 minutes, then flip the bacon over and sprinkle on a little more brown sugar. Bake for another 10-15 minutes, until the bacon is crispy and has a deep brown, lacquered look. Cool bacon on a parchment-lined cooling rack and try to keep your hands off it while it cools.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Cheap Eats: Burtons Grill

If the thought of huge holiday meals has you looking for smaller dishes to tide you over between parties, Burtons Grill has a new bar menu to keep your stomach and your wallet full. Each plate is priced at $4.95 and holds a generous serving. Two plates would definitely make a decent meal.

Although there are only five choices on Burtons' Small Plates menu, the options are diverse enough that anyone could find something to like. The warm goat cheese salad was this Bostonist's favorite - two disks of cheese, coated in crunchy panko breadcrumbs, and a well-dressed spinach and bacon salad. We also enjoyed the scallop crostini (above) - thin slices of warm scallop on crispy bread with a drizzle of lemon cream sauce. The buttermilk-battered fried feta was the most decadent of the bunch - who eats 8 or so ounces of feta at one time? - but if you're looking for a salty, crispy treat, this is the one to order. The BLT was on the small side (although well constructed), but the huge pile of onion strings on the side more than made up for its size. Finally, the firecracker shrimp were a little too spicy for us, but boasted well-cooked shrimp, a crispy exterior, and plenty of hot Buffalo sauce.

Burtons Grill offers their Small Plates menu everyday from 3pm until close (10pm Sundays, 11pm every other day). They are located at 1363 Boylston Street, near Fenway Park.

Originally published on Bostonist.

Burton's Grill on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Cranberry Orange Jam

A few weeks ago, I was wandering through one of the last farmers markets of the year and came across a huge bin of fresh cranberries. They were so beautiful - bright and plump - that I couldn't help but bring some home. Which is funny, because the only thing I could think to make with them was cranberry sauce. I'm pretty sure the only person who will eat cranberry sauce in my family is my father. So I started brainstorming (ie doing internet searches) for other ideas and came across a few recipes for cranberry orange jam, or more like cranberry marmalade. Since being diagnosed with canning fever this summer, I jumped at the chance to put a cranberry concoction into little glass jars. The recipe below is what I cobbled together, and I think it's pretty tasty (although I think it serves as a better accompaniment to savory dishes, like maybe alongside a roast pork, than on toast or something sweet).

How do you like to use fresh cranberries?

Cranberry Orange Jam
8 cups (about 2 pounds) fresh cranberries
3-4 small, thin-skinned oranges (like clementines or tangerines)
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup white wine (I used a Riesling, because it was what I had on hand, and it added some sweetness)

Wash and pick over berries, removing any that are soft. Dice whole oranges, removing any seeds - since the rind doesn't decrease in size as it cooks, make sure you cut it to the size you want in the final product. Combine all ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and continue cooking until cranberries pop open and mixture thickens, stirring to make sure it doesn't stick.

While jam cooks, fill the largest pot you have with water and place some sort of rack on the bottom (I use a lobster pot that comes with a fitted strainer, so I just use that strainer). You don't want the jars to touch the bottom of the pot. Bring to a boil. Place clean glass jars in the water and boil for at least 10 minutes to sterilize. Water should come to an inch or two above the tops of the jars. Prepare lids according to manufacturer's instructions.

Remove jars from water when the jam is done. Fill jars with jam, leaving 1/4 inch headroom on top. Wipe the rims of the jar so they're clean and place on the lids on the jars.

Place the jars back in the boiling water, put the cover on the pot, and process for 10 minutes (start timing when the water returns to a boil if it has become cooler). Carefully remove the jars from the pot and place on a kitchen towel to cool. You will hear the jars seal shut as they cool.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday I'm In Love... with Kozy Shack Pear Mangosteen Pudding

I was walking through the supermarket the other day and came to a screeching halt next to the pudding section. Kozy Shack's new Simply Well line has colorful packaging and, more importantly, flavors that make it stand out from the crowd on the shelf. The words "pear" and "mangosteen" jumped out at me - these are not things that usually describe pudding - and a package made its way into my basket in a split-second.

And after popping a cup open, it became clear to me that this pudding was more than pretty packaging. Both the pear and the mangosteen flavors are clear and distinct, and yet they work together in harmony to create one hell of a pudding. It's light and refreshing and yet filling. The texture in the package is a little thick (hence no picture), thanks to tapioca starch and added fiber, but the mouthfeel is just right.

I found my pear mangosteen pudding at my local Market Basket (which is quickly becoming a great place to shop for speciality items), but you could ask for it at any store that already carries Kozy Shack puddings.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bar Snacks at the Regal Beagle

On Monday night, I met up with my friend Melody and the wonderful Erin of Erin Cooks for a screening of Babette's Feast at the Coolidge Corner Theatre. I felt like a bad food writer for never having seen it before. Of course, we couldn't go into a movie about food without eating something first, so we decided to meet up at the newly opened Regal Beagle just down the street.

The Regal Beagle is a warm and homey spot - the lush red wallpaper makes it very cozy. The layout is a little counter-intuitive, with the bar and lounge area in the back, but it also makes for more secluded drinking.

I tried a couple of the cocktails, which were strong and tasty, but the food was the real winner. We stuck to the bar bites menu and loved every bit.

The crab rangoon empanadas were a delightful twist on the typical crab rangoon - the dough was light and crispy, and although the filling was a little thin (it could have used some chunks of crab or even celery), it was quite flavorful. They were also the most expensive thing we tried, at $8 for 3. The other dishes were a much better value.

I loved the tempura sweet potato fries, which weren't like sweet potato fries anywhere else. The potatoes were cut into thick chunks and were soft and sweet inside the light tempura batter. Five dollars for a heaping plate was fantastic. The dates, stuffed with gorgonzola and wrapped in bacon, were very rich and perfect for sharing (and were only a dollar each!). The pumpkin hummus was also a treat, a little sweeter than your typical hummus and topped with finely chopped cucumber, red onion, and feta and served with crispy pita chips.

I'm glad to see an interesting place like the Regal Beagle in Coolidge Corner, and I think it's a great option for a bite before a movie. I'd love to see even more variety on the bar bites menu, as the entrees are a little higher priced than I thought they would be (they hover around $20).

Regal Beagle on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Vote for my PAMA Recipes!

Just a note to say that voting has begun on the PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur contest. You must have a Facebook account to vote, and you can vote once daily from now until December 15th. You can find all the entries here, and my entries are the Pomegranate Paklava and the Phyllo-Wrapped Brie. Thanks!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Pomegranate Paklava

Paklava just doesn't photograph well, does it?

As a second entry into PAMA's Pomegranate Month recipe contest, I decided to update an Armenian classic with Pomegranate Paklava. Armenian paklava is usually less sweet and gooey than Greek baklava, which I am in favor of, but I've still never really liked it. My mother makes it with walnuts, possibly the worst nut out there (I'll eat Brazil nuts before I eat a walnut!), and I've always felt that pistachios are a more fitting nut for this pastry anyway. Adding pomegranate seemed like a natural step. I'm really happy with how this turned out, and although I'm still not a fan of paklava in general, I'd be much more likely to eat this fruitier version.

Pomegranate Paklava
2 cups chopped pistachios
2 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 lb. phyllo dough
2 sticks butter, melted
1/2 cup PAMA Liqueur
1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar

Combine chopped pistachios, 2 Tbsp sugar, and cinnamon in a bowl and set aside.

Unroll phyllo dough and cover with a damp cloth to prevent it from drying. Brush melted butter over the bottom and sides of a 13×9 pan. Lay one sheet of phyllo dough on the bottom of the pan and brush generously with butter. Repeat with two-thirds of the phyllo sheets, ending with a brushing of butter. Spread the pistachio mixture evenly over the dough, making sure to spread all the way to the edges. Top with the remaining sheets of phyllo dough, each brushed with butter. Cover the pan and refrigerate for an hour to let the butter harden.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and cut the paklava into squares or diamonds, making sure to cut all the way through to the bottom. Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until golden brown.

While paklava is cooling, combine PAMA Liqueur, water, and 1 cup of sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and stir to dissolve the sugar. Pour hot syrup over paklava; if you like a paklava that is a little less sweet, use less of the syrup. Re-cut the paklava (the edge of a spatula may give you better leverage than a knife). Serve on a platter or in individual paper baking cups.

Phyllo-Wrapped Brie with PAMA Drizzle

Happy Pomegranate Month! If you're seeing a lot of pomegranate recipes out there, it's because Pomegranate Month is in full swing (not to mention that pomegranates are just plain delicious).

PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur is celebrating Pomegranate Month with a recipe contest. The only requirement for entries? Using 3 tablespoons of PAMA. Thankfully, the sweet and tart liqueur pairs well with a lot of flavors.

My first entry, Phyllo-Wrapped Brie with PAMA Drizzle, is kind of a mishmash of ideas. I wanted to use phyllo dough because it always looks fancy, and it's pretty easy to use (even if a lot of people are scared of using it - just give it a shot!). I figured a version of individual brie en croute would be a great appetizer - I love the idea of brie en croute, but I don't like the idea of putting pastry on top of a cracker. This eliminates the need for crackers, making the entire thing hand-held. As for the PAMA sauce, I kept thinking of an amazing steak I had in Italy, covered in a balsamic vinegar reduction that tasted like rich chocolate. A thick sauce like that, but with more fruity flavor from the PAMA, seemed like a perfect pair to the pastry.

Apparently I hit this one out of the park. Our usually loud and boisterous group didn't make a sound when these finally hit the table. The one vegetarian, who ate these as her main coarse, was literally scraping the plate clean of every last drop of sauce. I'm so glad these worked out well, contest or no, and I have a feeling these will be on my holiday table in the next few months. If nothing else, the combination of PAMA and balsamic vinegar makes a sauce that would be killer on just about anything.

Phyllo-Wrapped Brie with PAMA Drizzle
1 lb. phyllo dough
10 oz. brie, cut into 10 long slices
2 sticks butter, melted
pomegranate seeds
1/2 cup PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Unroll phyllo dough and cover with a damp cloth to prevent from drying. Lay one sheet of phyllo dough on work surface and brush generously with melted butter. Lay a second sheet of phyllo dough on top of the first and brush with butter. Place one slice of brie lengthwise along the bottom edge of the dough and top with pomegranate seeds. Roll the brie in the dough two turns, fold in the sides to seal the ends, then continue rolling the brie. Trim the end to lie neatly beneath the pastry, and place seam-side down on a baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough and brie. Brush completed pieces with butter.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. While the pastries are baking, prepare the sauce by combining the PAMA Liqueur, balsamic vinegar, and salt together in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until thick and syrupy.

To serve, drizzle sauce over the pastries and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds.

*NOTE* If these are too big, you can make smaller ones, but use just one sheet of phyllo - two might overwhelm a smaller piece of cheese.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Cooking with Harbor Sweets

Twitter has led me to some of the coolest events as of late. A while ago, I saw a tweet from Harbor Sweets, an amazing local candy company, announcing a cooking class that they would be hosting in their factory. Cooking with Sweet Sloops, my favorite of their chocolates, made with almond toffee crunch, white and dark chocolate, and pecans? Sure - imagine the amazing cookies you could make with them! But no, the class was going to focus on a full menu of recipes, not just desserts. When I saw the words "Sweet Sloops Pad Thai," I knew I had to go.

So last Saturday, after getting more than a little lost, we arrived at Harbor Sweets' factory in Salem only a few minutes late. The small room was packed with tables and people, and we squeezed into our seats as the chef starting talking. The afternoon was led by Chef Bill, a local personal chef, and he taught us a lot about cooking with humor and verve.

We started with dates stuffed with goat and gorgonzola cheeses, bacon, and Sweet Sloop Crunch. I thought I wouldn't like these, but surprisingly, this was my favorite dish of the day. The saltiness of the cheese and bacon were married perfectly with the sweetness of the candy and the dates, and the bacon and the Sweet Sloops added plenty of texture to an otherwise soft dish. These would be perfect for a holiday appetizer, as you can make them ahead and just pop them in the oven to warm through. Since this was my favorite, the recipe is below.

We then moved onto Pad Thai. A lot of people seemed skeptical about pairing candy with pad thai, but I thought it would be a great match - there's already sugar and peanuts in pad thai, so why not? In fact, Chef Bill took out both the sugar and the peanuts and used the Sweet Sloops to provide those flavors - it worked perfectly, although I can't see making this routinely. It's definitely a conversation piece, though, and would be great to wow your friends and family with.

For dessert, we actually tried two different dishes. Chef Bill passed around Toll House cookies that were made with Sweet Sloops Crunch instead of chocolate chips. They were delicious, as I expected them to be, and is probably the recipe that most of the attendees are going to try at home. We also had Bananas Foster, with Sweet Sloops Crunch used as a garnish. (Above, Chef Bill gets ready for some flambe.) I'm not crazy about cooked bananas, but I loved the Sweet Sloops over ice cream.

So, as if I didn't already love Sweet Sloops, I now have even more excuses to buy them.

Can you see the chocolate all melty and delicious in that picture?

Dates with Goat and Gorgonzola Cheese, Bacon, and Sweet Sloops Crunch
4 oz goat cheese, room temperature
3 oz gorgonzola cheese, room temperature
3 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/4 cup Sweet Sloops Crunch
15 Medjool dates

Preheat oven to 350°.

Mix together the two cheeses, then mix in cooked bacon and Sweet Sloops Crunch. Make a slit in the top of each date, keeping the bottom intact, and remove the pit. Put one teaspoon of the cheese mixture into each date. Place dates on a sheet pan and bake for less than 5 minutes, until cheese are heated through.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Cheap Eats: Daily Grill

A restaurant called Daily Grill sounds nothing if a little generic. Luckily, their food is anything but. While the Daily Grill is a popular chain on the West Coast, it's rather new to the East, and the Daily Grill in the Prudential Center is their only New England outpost.

The best deal at the Daily Grill is their Social Hour menu, offered weekdays 4-7pm, Saturday 12-5pm, and all day Sunday. The page-long menu features small plates for only $2.95 (a hot dog, hummus plate, beef sliders, meatloaf sliders, a chicken quesadilla, fried calamari, and mac and cheese) and $3.95 (spinach artichoke dip, crab cake sliders, tuna sashimi, and chicken pot pie). Order a drink and you get your first plate free. Bostonist enjoyed the calamari, some of the most tender we've had, and the sliders, which could be paired with another dish to make a full meal. The chicken pot pie, though, was the real standout, and probably the best deal. For only $4, you get a big bowl heaped with chicken, carrots, peas, onions, and mushrooms in a cream sauce and topped with flaky puff pastry, a perfect antidote for the cold days that are sure to come.

If you're willing to spend a little more money but still want a good deal, try the Daily Grill's Supper Menu. For $28, you get a choice of any salad on the menu, one of five main courses (such as filet mignon with a bleu cheese crust, ala cart at $25), and your choice of a dessert or a glass of wine. That's basically three courses for the price of one - not a bad deal in our books.

Daily Grill is located at 111 Huntington Avenue, at street level below the Prudential mall. They are open Monday-Thursday, 11:30am-10pm, Friday and Saturday, 11am-11pm, and Sunday 11am-10pm.

Daily Grill on Urbanspoon

Monday, November 9, 2009

Bacon Vodka, the Oddest Drink I've Had in a Long Time

It's been, oh geez, a month since I went to my first tasting at Downtown Wine & Spirits in Davis Square. I used to shop there frequently during college, but it was rather inconvenient when I lived in Brookline. It took a mysterious tweet from Citysearch Boston regarding a bacon liquor tasting to get me back in there.

The tasting was a great time - a bunch of people crowded around the small bar, shuffling around patiently to try tastes (big tastes) of three different beers, three different wines, and a homemade bacon vodka. The beers and wines were only bacon-y in spirit - smoky aroma and flavor can go a long way, especially when you already have bacon on the brain. I thought the vodka, though, was pretty awesome. Well, maybe not that vodka, but the concept of bacon vodka? Yep, pretty cool.

So when my older brother's birthday rolled around only a few weeks later and I had no idea what to get for him, I thought I'd try my hand at bacon vodka and give him something to talk about with his poker-playing buddies. Making bacon vodka is SIMPLE - there's probably only about 30 minutes of work involved.

When it came time to actually drink the vodka, though, I wasn't sure what to do. It was too salty to drink on its own (and god knows I love me some salt!). I stumbled across some recipes from Bakon Vodka (as far as I know, the only bacon-flavored vodka available in stores) and decided to give the prosciutto-wrapped bacon cocktail a try. I've tweaked it a bit below to better suit my tastes. Their drink list is intriguing, though, and I really want to give the Irish Boar a try too.

The thought of salty vodka may turn some people off, but it's worth giving a try. If nothing else, it's certainly a conversation piece. And if you're interested in other tastings (strange and straight forward alike) from Downtown Wine & Spirits, keep an eye on their website and Twitter.

Bacon Vodka
3 slices of bacon, cooked and grease blotted off
about 2 cups vodka (something you would drink on its own)

Place the cooked bacon into a pint jar or a similar non-reactive container that can be sealed. Fill with vodka. Place the jar in a dark cabinet for one week, then place the jar in the freezer overnight to help the fat solidify. Pour the vodka through a paper coffee filter (once or twice) - the resulting vodka should be clear with no little fat globs floating around. Clean out the pint jar, then pour vodka back in and store in the freezer.

Prosciutto-Wrapped Bacon Cocktail
3 parts bacon vodka
3 parts melon liqueur (like Midori)
splash of lime seltzer

Combine bacon vodka and melon liqueur with ice in a cocktail shaker and shake until chilled. Strain into a martini glass and top with a splash of chilled seltzer.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pomegranate Baba Ganoush

I'm Armenian and I love eggplant, and yet, it has taken me this long to make baba ganoush. I feel like a slacker. But don't worry, I've definitely made more than my fair share of the dip in the past few weeks to make up for it.

Baba ganoush is a Middle Eastern dip or salad which, at its most basic, consists of mashed eggplant and spices. It's an easy enough recipe that only takes a few minutes to put together (minus the roasting time, of course). It's simple, and yet, no one can decide on one recipe. My Armenian cookbook has four different versions (of course, that cookbook typically has four different versions of every dish, so this isn't saying all that much). I've played around with the recipe enough that I think I've found my version of baba ganoush. How do you like to make baba ganoush?

Oh, and seeing at pomegranate season has officially begun (I recently picked up a HUGE pomegranate from Pom Wonderful at the supermarket and couldn't wait to start peeling), and that means it's time for me to start throwing pomegranate arils into anything and everything I make. So into my baba ganoush went a handful of arils, along with some on the top for garnish, and it was love at first bite. The body of the dip is garlicky and salty with an unctuous creaminess, and the pomegranate adds little bursts of sweet freshness that makes this dip a little different (it's the same concept as my pomegranate guacamole).

Pomegranate Baba Ganoush
1 large eggplant (about 1 pound)
1/4 cup tahini (sesame paste)
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
arils of 1 pomegranate, divided
3/4 cup parsley, finely chopped, plus a few whole leaves for garnish

Preheat oven to 350°. Prick the eggplant with a fork, then set on a rimmed baking pan with 1/2 cup water. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the eggplant is soft all the way through. Add more water to the pan as needed; the steam will help the eggplant cook.

Let eggplant cool until it can be handled, then peel off the skin. Combine the eggplant, tahini, 1 Tbsp olive oil, salt, cayenne pepper, lemon juice, and garlic in a blender (or a large bowl if you are using an immersion blender). Blend until smooth and combined. Stir in 3/4 of the pomegranate arils and chopped parsley. Add more salt and cayenne pepper to taste.

To serve, arrange baba ganoush in bowl, drizzle with remaining 1 Tbsp olive oil, and scatter remaining pomegranate arils and parsley leaves on top. Serve with sliced vegetables, pita chips, or just a fork.

Monday, November 2, 2009

ONCE Upon a Midnight Dreary

From the very first time I heard about Cuisine En Locale's ONCE, I've been dying to go. ONCE stands for One Night Culinary Event, and the concept is that JJ Gonson and her friends put together a special dinner party (with some loose theme) for that one night only. So I've been longing to go to one for about a year now, and between my schedule conflicts and other ONCEs filling up too quickly, ONCE Upon a Midnight Dreary (hosted the night before Halloween) was the first one I could make.

The first email I got from JJ just said that the night was going to be scary. I can handle scary, I thought. It wasn't until a night or two before that I realized just how scary this night would be.

I like to think I'm pretty open-minded about a lot of foods - I'll give most things at least a taste. But this meal, focusing on offal (oh, and bugs!), really pushed my limits. Having said that, I'm pretty damn proud of how much I did end up eating.

I'm looking forward to JJ's next ONCE that is perhaps a little less trying. I loved everything about the evening except some of the ingredients, so I'm definitely excited to see what else JJ and her crew can do.

I had invited some friends to join me for the evening, but in the long run, I'm glad they didn't come. So I walked in alone and stood there awkwardly for a minute before being intercepted by JJ. We had emailed back and forth a few times, and I was excited to finally meet her. She directed me over to a table right next to the kitchen so I could see everything that was going on. I settled in, opened my wine, and started talking with my fellow diners (all first-time ONCE attendees). Sitting next to me was Benjamin Eckstein, a video photographer and producer, who took amazing photos all night - some of his photos can be found on LimeyG's blog (who also has her own great write-up for the night and was sitting at the table behind me).

The meal started innocuously enough - chicken liver pate on amazing fresh baguettes. That bread proved to be my saving grace for the evening. The pate was quickly followed by a Thai-spiced soup featuring fish heads and hoisin-glazed chicken feet. The soup was so wonderfully spiced, heady with fresh ginger and peppered with super-thin slices of veggies (I avoided a fish head, much to my relief). The chicken feet, made with homemade hoisin sauce, were most definitely not my kind of thing - I don't even like chicken wings - but now I can say I've had them (that kind of thinking came up a lot during the night).

Beets in aspic were up next, and were featured more for their creepy looks than their actual grossness. The beets were tender and sweet, and the blood-red aspic was surprisingly salty.

And then things got really weird. JJ introduced David Gracer as "the bug guy," and he started serving up the bugs. Crickets and mealworms were sauteed into some rice, and then cockroches and giant ants were passed around. They all grossed me out, and I silently promised myself that I wouldn't try one. But when one of my fellow diners said the crickets weren't that bad and had the texture of roasted asparagus tips, I gave it a shot. Can't say I'm not going to think of them the next time I have asparagus, though... (To learn more about eating bugs, watch David Gracer on The Colbert Report - thanks again to LimeyG for finding the video!)

A little earlier in the evening, a dish of offal had been passed around the room, and everyone took guesses as to what it was. Someone at another table guessed buffalo spinal cord, and they were right. It went into the oven (for only about a minute), was cut up into tiny little bites, and was passed around as another tasty treat after the bugs. It looked much better once it was cut up. It tasted a lot like an oddly cooked egg - chewy on one side and like undercooked egg whites on the other.

Courses started to come out a little slower as they were more time-intensive to make. That was fine for me, as it gave me plenty of time to drink more wine (and prepare myself for what was to come). Skewers of chicken and rabbit hearts were brought out (the chicken was the smaller of the two) and served alongside black beans and chorizo. ("You'll eat chorizo but you won't eat hearts?" JJ asked.) The hearts were meaty but rubbery (obviously, because of all the work they did prior to their second life as dinner). We also had sauteed kale with some kind of larvae - I usually love kale, but I couldn't make myself eat more than one bite of this.

Next out was the kidney fricassee, served on puff pastry. Um, I liked the puff pastry :)

Tongue was yet another dish I figured I wouldn't like at all, but surprisingly, this was my favorite dish of the whole night. The lamb tongue was served as paper-thin slices in an open-faced Reuben sandwich (featuring homemade Thousand Island dressing and sauerkraut). The tongue was amazing - it was so tender, it completely melted in my mouth.

The pig head cake was the final savory dish of the night. It was composed of all the meaty bits of the pig's head, bound together with a bit of aspic, then fried. Everything is better when it's fried, but still wasn't big on the whole eating-a-head thing.

Dessert was simple and elegant, even though it contained bugs (at least one, possibly two kinds). A slice of watermelon, topped with a small piece of giant water bug, and a poached pear with creme de marrons (pureed chestnuts which may or may not have contained some worms). At this point, I was tired and pretty grossed out by everything that had crossed my plate during the night, so I only nibbled on this.

When it was time to go, I made sure to give JJ a big hug and let her know that, while there was nothing in our meal that I would ever order, I loved having the opportunity to try everything. I'm definitely looking forward to attending another ONCE (albeit one with more typical ingredients).

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Bloody Eyeball Caramels and Other Halloween Chocolates

When I was a kid, my mother and I would make chocolates about once a year, usually around Valentine's Day. She'd fill an electric skillet with water and we'd fill glass jars with different colors of chocolate buttons, rest them in the water, and watch them melt. I don't think I was very patient with the whole process of filling the molds, putting them in the freezer to harden, then shaking the finished chocolates out, because there was chocolate involved! What kind of kid is patient when there's a big vat of chocolate in front of them?!

I don't know where that electric skillet has gone, and I use all my glass jars for canning nowadays. It's only been in the past couple of years that I've gotten back to chocolate making. I still only do it once or twice a year, but I've found that I'm much more patient with the process. And I love the whapping sound the molds make as you hit them on the counter to release any air bubbles.

Last year, I made gravestones, spider webs, and pumpkin cups. I couldn't find my molds this year, so I had to go out and buy some more (I know, rough stuff). When I saw these eyeballs, I knew immediately what to do.

These probably took longer than they should have to make, but that was because I was pretty detailed in painting on the red. I think they look pretty damn creepy, and seeing a whole bowlful stare back at me makes my skin crawl. And I really like the effect of blood-red caramel in the middle (just add some red food coloring to melted caramels, then let harden to cut).

These chocolate-coated Oreos took much less time because they aren't so detailed, but the mold only made four at a time, so there was still a lot of waiting involved. They're a little happier and good for anyone who's too squeamish to eat a bloody eyeball.

Do you make chocolates? Any favorite shapes/holidays/occasions for them?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Cheap Eats: Kupel's Bakery

There are plenty of places around to grab a bagel sandwich, but you're often limited in choices or end up paying more than you'd like. At Kupel's (pronounced "couples") just outside Coolidge Corner, though, you have a whole slew of options and get a tasty sandwich for just a couple of bucks.

Kupel's bagels are baked fresh daily in a wide range of flavors. They're chewy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. This Bostonist favors the jalapeno bagel, with just enough spice to make it interesting, but there are so many choices, you could take home a dozen with all different flavors. For the full sandwich experience, choose from a variety of spreads (like honey walnut cream cheese or hummus), fish (like white fish salad or lox) or eggs, and a variety of veggies. You can choose from a number of sandwiches, named mostly for local sports heroes, or pick your own toppings to get exactly what you want.

If you're still hungry after your bagel, pick up a pastry for dessert. The cases are filled with choices, and each type of pastry typically comes in 3 or 4 different flavors. Kupel's hamentashen are so popular, they're made year-round, with fillings like poppy seed and apricot, and they come in two different sizes. This Bostonist loves the flat tires, huge disks of puff pastry with layers of filling (like lemon or chocolate) and sprinkled with coarse sugar, because it's almost impossible to eat one in just one sitting.

Kupel's is located at 421 Harvard Street in Brookline. They are open Sunday-Thursday, 6am-8pm, Friday 6am-7pm, and are closed Saturday. They are also Kosher/Pareve.

Originally published on Bostonist.

Kupel's Bagels on Urbanspoon

Monday, October 26, 2009

Apple and Butternut Squash Gratin

Like I said, I’ve been trying to use apples in any way possible. I love the combination of apples and cheese (enough so that my regular apple pie recipe uses gruyere in the crust) and figured that a savory dish featuring both ingredients couldn’t be a bad thing. After a quick search, I came up with a Martha Stewart recipe for a butternut squash and apple gratin. There were many things about it that I didn’t like, though, so I changed it around substantially and turned it into a much prettier dish. (The original called for laying down the squash, then the leeks, then the apples, and topping with parmesan. I think it looks much better when the squash, leeks, and apple are all layered together like above, but if you’re pressed for time, you can try it the easier way.)

As I was making the gratin, I kept thinking that there was no way that four of us were going to be able to eat the whole thing in one sitting (as part of a meal that also included a pork tenderloin). But from the first bite, it was clear that this dish was fantastic – we polished the whole thing off first. The apples and the squash cook down until they’re just barely holding onto their shape, and the cheese helps hold the whole thing together (while also adding some much needed saltiness to the sweet fruits). This is definitely a warm and comforting dish that would pair well with just about any fall meal. I wish we had had some leftover, if only so I could see how this did when reheated. You can cut and arrange everything ahead of time, although you might want to brush the apples with a little bit of lemon juice to make sure they don't brown and get dried out.

Apple and Butternut Squash Gratin
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp water
2 medium leeks, white part only, chopped and well washed
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup dry sherry
1 Tbsp chopped fresh sage
1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/8-inch thick slices
3-4 apples, peeled, cored, halved, and cut into 1/8-inch thick slices
8 ounces (or more) cheddar cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 350°.

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add leeks and water, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the leeks begin to brown, about 10 minutes. Add sherry and sage, and cook until liquid is reduced to a glaze, about 3 minutes. Set aside.

In a large, shallow baking dish, arrange squash and apple slices in alternating rows, as in the picture above. Add leek glaze between the layers. Cover tightly with aluminum foil, and bake for 45 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven, and raise the oven temperature to 450°. Uncover the pan and sprinkled the top with cheese. Bake uncovered for about 10 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and begun to brown. Cool slightly before serving.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Eat Drink and Be Fair Cook-Off

Last night was part two of Green Mountain Coffee's celebration of Fair Trade Month with their Eat Drink and Be Fair event. Instead of a sit down dinner like last week, this was billed as a "Top Chef Masters"-style cook off between some amazing chefs. Besides one dish from each competitor, there were also a range of appetizers focused on Fair Trade and local ingredients. And since Green Mountain was the host, there were a lot of other great companies from Vermont showing off their wares - Cabot Creamery, Long Trail Brewery, Ben & Jerry's - it was like going back to Vermont for an evening. My favorite appetizer was simple, and it's something that I think I'll be making at home - local apples and brie in puff pastry bites.

Since I've been telling people about these events, I've had questions about what Fair Trade is. Prior to these dinners, I had the vaguest sense of a definition, but I have a much firmer grasp on the term now. Basically, Fair Trade provides a fair price to farmers for their harvest. Prices can fluctuate wildly, so this makes sure they get a minimum price for their goods. It also creates networks for farmers, meaning they can work together to strengthen their communities (through schools, roads, etc). Fair Trade also allows companies like Green Mountain to get products out of difficult-to-reach regions and cutting out the middleman. Fair Trade can apply to a huge variety of products, including coffee, chocolate, vanilla, fruits like bananas, and even products like cotton. You can learn more about Fair Trade here.

As part of the event, Green Mountain flew some of the coffee producers from Guatamala up to New England to tour the facilities in Vermont and to join us at this dinner. Domingo, the president of their farmers association, spoke for a bit through a translator. One of the farmers had a video camera glued to his hand all night, taking in every bit of the event, and he had the biggest smile on his face the whole time.

OK, onto the food. I've been thinking about this sea urchin cappuccino from Chef Richard Garcia of Tastings Wine Bar & Bistro since I had it last week. This week's iteration was a little different, but probably because they were making a much bigger batch. The coffee, used in place of broth, was a stronger component. I like the idea of using coffee in this way, and it works especially well with the creamy and slightly sweet parsnips. During the Top Chef portion of the evening, Chef Garcia showed off by opening a bunch of sea urchins at such a fast pace that I couldn't even get a photo of him in action. This dish was also the most unique, I think, because it varied from the others, which were all protein over puree, and used the Fair Trade ingredients (coffee and vanilla) in the most unusual way.

Next up was a bacon and coffee crusted pork tenderloin with sweet potato puree, presented by Chef Jay Silva of Bambara. My friend thought the coffee in the crust (the black ring in the photo above) was too strong, but I really liked it. The pork was perfectly tender, thanks to the bacon, and the sweet potato was a fitting pairing, making the whole dish taste like fall.

Then we headed for the tea-smoked beef sirloin with banana squash puree and a coffee and sunchoke gravy, presented by Chef Will Gilson of Garden at the Cellar. This was probably my least favorite of the dishes, but only because the piece of meat I got was pretty grisly and hard to chew. The flavors were all really good, though, and I loved the use of cacao nibs as garnish. I still haven't been to Garden at the Cellar, and now I'm looking forward to it even more (if only because I want to see what Chef Gilson can do with a dish that I can actually chew). ;)

The last dish was coffee-marinated duck breast with parsnip puree, pickled pumpkin, gala apple, and an espresso-vanilla chimichurri, presented by Chef Peter McCarthy of EVOO and Za. This was pronounced the winner by the judges, and for good reason. The duck was cooked very well (appparently I like duck now, because this is the second time I've had it in a week and I loved both dishes), but the best part was the pickled pumpkin. I don't know how it's done, but it's something I want to make at home now!

After dinner, I grabbed a cup of coffee (Rainforest nut, which I haven't had for ages, and I loved it all over again) and enjoyed the balmy weather by sitting in the courtyard (can you believe it was snowing just a few days ago?!).

Oh, and did I mention Ben & Jerry's was there? They have a variety of Fair Trade flavors, but my favorite was the Chocolate Macadamia (Fair Trade vanilla and chocolate ice cream with fudge-covered sustainable-sourced macadamia nuts). Soooo good!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Mummy Pigs!

Ah, Halloween, the one time of year when you can serve gross-looking food and people won’t run away in horror (and if they do, that means you’ve done a good job, not ruined a recipe!). I also love how you can turn everyday foods into something fun and lighthearted, even if it’s just for one day.

This year, my sister-in-law is throwing a Halloween party for my nephew and nieces and their friends, and she asked if I had any savory, kid-friendly Halloween treats up my sleeve. Sweets are always easy to find, but recipes for themed savory foods can be much more difficult. I gave her a bunch of suggestions, but I thought I’d post my favorite – Mummy Pigs (ie Pigs in Blankets). (I’ve also been getting tons of hits on my photo of these on Flickr, so it seemed like a good thing to write about now.)

These are perfect because they combine a food that almost every kid will eat (hot dogs) with something that almost every kid gets interested in, even if only briefly (mummies). You can also make them ahead and just pop them in the oven at the last minute, making them perfect for any Halloween parties you might have planned. True, you can make them with full-sized hot dogs, but I like how the mini hot dogs come out looking more to scale – the regular ones look too skinny to me.

What’s your favorite savory Halloween dish?

Mummy Pigs
1 package (tube) refrigerated croissant dough
1 package tiny hot dogs (cocktail wieners, if you will)

Preheat oven to 350° and line a baking sheet with tin foil. Spray foil with cooking spray.

Unroll croissant dough and cut in half. Cut thin (about ¼-inch wide) pieces, enough for one for each hot dog. Wrap each hot dog with a strip of dough – don’t wrap the dough too solidly (leave a few gaps here and there) or it won’t look too much like mummy wrappings once they’ve baked. Also leave a little room near the “head” for the eyes (but don’t leave enough room for a full face or it’ll look like they’re wearing hats once they’ve baked). Arrange wrapped hot dogs on the tray so that they are not touching.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the dough is puffed and golden. Cool slightly, then add dots of mustard for eyes.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Using Up That Giant Bag of Apples

Last weekend, my friends and I finally got our acts together and headed out to do a little apple picking. We decided to forgo our usual spot, Parlee Farm in Tyngsboro, for a quieter orchard (read: fewer kids and, sadly, no goats in trees). We decided to check out two different spots in Harvard (the town, not the square) - Old Frog Pond Farm and Carlson Orchards.

Old Frog Pond is the only certified organic Pick-Your-Own orchard in the state. We stopped there first, primarily because they were still picking raspberries (on Columbus Day weekend!). They seemed hesitant to even sell us a box, saying they weren't sure if there was anything left on the bushes, but once we got down to the patch, we found plenty of berries (and ended up buying a few more boxes). Because the berries were so (overly) ripe, we had to use them right away - apple raspberry pie that night and some raspberry limoncello brewing away in my cabinet right now. Old Frog Pond also has a nice sculpture walk through the woods - some of the art is not exactly my cup of tea, but it was nice to wander through on a brisk day.

From there, we headed over to Carlson Orchards, also in Harvard. We grabbed our bags and headed into the orchards... and were instantly surprised at the size of the farm and the variety of apples. Most orchards are only picking three or four varieties at once, but Carlson had seven or so ripe for the picking. We tasted them all as we went, but my favorites were the McIntosh and the Macoun - I don't think I actually picked any of the other kinds. Carlson also makes their own ciders (regular and Honeycrisp), and you can get hot apple crisp with ice cream when you're done picking your apples (I tried a bit that was so good, I almost went back in to the store to buy my own - the sugar had all caramelized so it was gooey and amazingly delicious). I really enjoyed picking at Carlson - I think it might be my new favorite place for apple picking near Boston.

Of course, apple picking left me with a giant bag of apples to use. I mean, I really enjoy apples, but that's a lot of fruit to get through. So besides the apple-a-day since last weekend, I've been cooking with them wherever possible. Apple pie? Check. Apple crisp? Check. Apple butter? Check. Apple and squash gratin? Check. Caramel apples? Check!

When I was in the grocery store to pick up caramels to melt for caramel apples, I found a genius product that made the whole process wicked easy - Kraft Caramel Bits. For some reason, they're not on Kraft's website, but they're basically caramel perfect for melting or adding to cookie batters without the need for unwrapping - just open the bag and dump the contents out!

I also love the combination of sweet and salty, so I added pretzels and bittersweet chocolate to my mix. It helped cut the sweetness of the caramel and added texture. I didn't get too creative with this round of apples, but they were tasty enough that I might not deviate from the combination next time.

Chocolate Pretzel Caramel Apples
5 fresh medium apples
5 popsicle sticks
11 oz caramel pieces
16 oz bitterweet chocolate, chopped
2 handfulls of pretzels, broken into bitesize pieces

Line a pan with parchment paper and set aside. Push popsicle sticks into the apples at the stem and set aside.

In a small pot, melt caramels over medium-low heat, stirring frequently to prohibit burning. When all the caramel is melted, remove from heat. Dip apples into caramel, using a spoon to bring the caramel up over the sides. Set covered apples back on the parchment paper; freeze for 30 minutes to harden.

Add chopped chocolate to a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 20-30 second blasts, stirring between each, until chocolate is melted (if you heat it all in one go, it will burn - take it from me). Mix in broken pretzel pieces, then dip caramel-coated apples into chocolate, using a spoon to bring the chocolate up over the sides. Return apples to the parchment paper and return to freezer to harden. Remove apples within 30 minutes and store at room temperature.

To serve, cut the apple into nine pieces around the core (like a tic-tac-toe board). This ensures that each bite is a perfect combination of fruit, caramel, and chocolate.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Fair Trade Dinner at Tastings Wine Bar & Bistro

Hi, have we met? If we had, you'd know I love my coffee. I blame my aunt for taking me on summer walks to get iced coffee when I was a kid and my father for brewing multiple pots every morning. My friend Melody calls me a "champion" coffee drinker because I can slug down a cup like it's going out of style. So when Green Mountain Coffee (which I just visited in Vermont) got in touch with me about a series of Fair Trade events in Boston, I just had to find out more.

October is Fair Trade Month, and Green Mountain is calling attention to it through a new website, Eat, Drink, and Be Fair, and by hosting events in Boston, which will be declared a Fair Trade city in 2010. They have challenged a few local chefs to a Top Chef Masters-type event to cook with Fair Trade ingredients, which I'll write about next week.

I got the chance to attend something of a test run for one of the competitors, Chef Richard Garcia of Tastings Wine Bar & Bistro in Foxboro. Chef Garcia uses local or Fair Trade ingredients as much as possible in the restaurant, so he seems like a perfect choice to create a Fair Trade dinner. In fact, he took the coffee theme all the way and included coffee in each of the courses, and not in typical ways like crusting a steak in coffee. The dishes were interesting and adventurous and absolutely delicious.

To be honest, when I sat down and saw our menu for the evening, I was not excited. There was nothing (not one thing) that I would ever order. But I figured I could at least enjoy the wine and coffee and then find something to eat when I got home. But then something miraculous happened - I loved almost every single thing presented to me. If the regular menu at Tastings is anything like this, I wouldn't hesitate to go back.

We started with a sea urchin cappuccino, served in the sea urchin shell. In reality, it was a creamy parsnip soup, blended with local sea urchin and coffee used instead of stock, and topped with a vanilla froth. The sea urchin lent a bit of umami to the puree, and the sweetness and creaminess of the parsnip combined with the coffee was definitely reminiscent of a cappuccino. I would have licked the bowl clean if it hadn't have been for the sharp spikes.

Next up was coffee cured Hamachi, topped with a grapefruit vanilla citrette, heirloom red peppers, Marcona almonds, and fennel fronds. The fish was sweet and tender, and the almonds on top served as a crunchy foil to the rest of the dish.

The main entree was duck two ways, highlighting a delicious heirloom breed of duck. Lola ducks are deep red in color and taste more like pork or beef (at least to me) than duck. Chef Garcia describes them here on his blog. The coffee-smoked duck breast was like a nice steak - juicy and meaty and satisfying. The real star of the dish, though, was the confit leg with French roast duck jus. It was so tender and perfectly salty - it reminded me a bit of corned beef or pot roast.

Dessert was the weakest part of the meal, but it still had its strong points. The highlight was coffee- and cardamom-infused dates. Cardamom is often added to coffee in the Middle East (in the Boston area, I know Karoun in Newton serves their coffee this way), and the dates were a great vehicle for these flavors. I could have eaten a whole plate of just the dates. They were served with a coffee gel which was perhaps a little too solid - I was hoping for something more like Durgin Park's coffee jello. But did I mention those dates?

During the meal, we were accompanied by Sandy Yusen, director of PR for Green Mountain Coffee. We spent the whole evening discussing fair trade and local foods (and, well, food in general). After dinner, Sandy walked us through a cupping, or tasting, of two different types of Green Mountain Fair Trade coffee. I enjoyed tasting the Kenyan and the Sumatran side-by-side because I got a much better sense of how they compared to each other. Sandy explained that coffee has about twice the flavor compounds of wine, so using wine tasting techniques can help with identifying flavors. The Kenyan was bright and acidic and earthy, and Sandy compared it to a sourdough bread, while the Sumatran was more full-bodied with a warm and round flavor, more like a Russian rye bread. I'm so used to doctoring up my coffee that actually tasting the profile of the coffee was a nice change - I might have to do cuppings more often!

I'll write more about Fair Trade next week after the Eat, Drink, and Be Fair event. To learn more about Fair Trade, visit the Eat, Drink, and Be Fair website and take the pledge.

Tastings Wine Bar & Bistro on Urbanspoon