Posts Tagged ‘Brunch’

Emerald’s Salad

In Cooking, Uncategorized on August 18, 2011 at 9:39 pm

This crazy concoction just kind of happened… It started with a pretty picture of a salad (with a link in another language!), a craving, and then a random list of things that I thought would oddly go together. The salad in the picture had cherries, and well I’ve never thought to put fresh cherries in salad. So please, bear with me. Keep an open mind and palate and give it a try – it really isn’t as weird as it sounds or looks. Oh and if you can think of a better name, well I am all ears. Cherry Munster Avocado Rocket Salad… well as you can see it’s a bit much and surely there is something better than Emerald’s Salad.

Emerald’s Salad

1 package of rocket (arugula) blend lettuce, washed
1 large avocado, sliced and lightly salt & peppered
10-25 cherries, pitted and halved
block of Munster cheese, shaved into slices*
dressing of your choice – we used an olive oil vinaigrette, 
          balsamic vinaigrette or raspberry would also be lovely.

Wash and dry lettuce, clean and prepare cherries, and prepare avocados once ready to assemble and serve – as they will brown.  You can prepare each serving and then dress; or toss all three ingredients with dressing and then dish up; shave slices of Munster on top to finish the dish. Enjoy.

mobile upload

I love salad! I will also admit I had my reservations when I fixed this, but the flavors all balance nicely. The lovely bitter and peppery flavor of the arugula, with the sweet juice and pieces of cherries, rounded by the buttery avocado, more texture contrast with the mild creamy cheese, and all of it drizzled with the vinaigrette lending both the flavor of olive oil, vinegar and a hint of spices – good stuff!  


Weekly Boozer: Cherry Rosé Sangria

In Uncategorized, Weekly Boozer on August 5, 2011 at 9:22 pm

Oh baby it’s hot outside… seriously. It’s hot. Dang hot. Which means really we have mostly been drinking water. Hey, I’m keeping it real! lol. But, sometimes on a summer afternoon nothing is better than a glass of chilled Rosé wine or a crisp and refreshing glass of Sangria. So I figured, why not have both?

Cherry Rosé Sangria

1 bottle of Rosé wine
1 can lemon-lime soda, diet if you like
1/4 cup sugar, more if you like it sweeter
1/2 cup Elderflower Liquor
1/2 cup Triple-Sec Liquor 
1 large orange
1 cup strawberries
2 cups cherries, pitted and halved
(any other fruit you like… peaches, raspberries, etc.)

Directions: Wash all the fruit well; slice orange, strawberries and prepare cherries. Place all the fruits in a large pitcher or bowl with sugar; lightly mull. Add Elderflower and Triple-Sec to fruit and let soak for at least one hour, stirring occasionally, or soak for longer if you desire… it only gets better with time!

Once fruit is ready, add bottle of Rosé wine and lemon-lime soda (ginger ale would also be nice!) to the mix and stir. Chill for another 1 to 3 hours (we kept some overnight – twice as nice the second day!!  Mix well before serving. I like to run the sangria through a filter and put the remaining fruit in a separate dish – so people can dish their drink up to their own desire; with or without ice. Plus it makes the sangria crystal clear. Garnish with fresh fruit if desired. Die of cold Rosé refreshment. The End. EO


Quinoa Grits

In Cooking, Uncategorized on June 30, 2011 at 9:32 pm

This is my first time to try quinoa. So far I am a big fan. It was just like cooking rice, although it smelled like I was cooking rice in peanut butter and chicken stock. Maybe that is just me, but it smelt weird so I was needless to say leery.  So I decided to make them cheesy and serve like grits with poached eggs for a meatless, but high protein dinner. So technically these aren’t grits, but this was the closest description I could come up with for the dish.

Quinoa Grits

Serves 2

1 cup cooked quinoa
2/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup cottage cheese
3-4 baby carrot, finely grated
1 egg, plus 1 egg white
1 small yellow onions, finely diced
1 /2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon salt
pinch of  garlic powder
Olive oil to saute onions
2 poached eggs to serve with Quinoa Grits. 


Directions: Prepare quinoa according to directions and set aside to cool. In a large bowl combine the cooked quinoa, cheddar cheese, cottage cheese, carrot, eggs, sugar, pepper, cumin, salt, and garlic powder.

Heat a frying pan with olive oil and saute onions; then add mixture and cook through until warm and all the cheese is melted. Place in your serving dish and top with a freshly poached egg. Voila.

I made extra quinoa in the rice cooker to try other recipes. This recipe would lend itself to any variety of flavors and spices so if cumin isn’t your thing feel free to experiment!


Loot: Spicy Apricot Loaf

In Baking, Loot, Uncategorized on February 23, 2011 at 9:41 pm

I am sure the readers of this blog will tire of my exploits with my friend Alisa’s jams, preserves and foodie type gifts.  Alas, that is what my loot posts are about! Wonderful gifts that inspire me in the kitchen and her Angry Apricot Preserves were the muse for this bread. (Thanks AJ – as always you rock my socks off ).  These preserves are delicious and if you want to substitute for regular preserves that would be fine, if you want them to be angry… crank up the heat with some crushed red pepper!! Other options for this bread would be any jam or marmalade which you love – orange marmalade would be lovely!  (Same goes for dried cranberries… feel free to use raisins, sultanas, currants or even dates!… or add nuts with the dry ingredients…)

Spicy Apricot Loaf


1 cup sugar
1 cup milk
1/2 cup craisins (dried cranberries)
1/2 cup Preserves, chopped (or jam, marmalade… etc)
1 stick of butter
2 cups self-rising flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp Jamaican allspice (or pumpkin pie spice)
pinch of coarse salt
1 large egg, beaten

Directions: In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring the sugar, milk, raisins, preserves (chopped down smaller or roughly processed in food chopper), and butter; stir well and bring to a boil.  Remove from heat and let cool completely.  (so weird, but the concoction smelt amazing and looked like creepy porridge!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a 9 inch loaf pan with wax paper or grease and lightly flour.

Stir the flour, baking soda, allspice, salt, and egg into the wet ingredients with a wooden spoon.  Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake for approximately 50 – 60 minutes, or until top is golden.  (Can test the middle of loaf with a toothpick to ensure doneness… if it does not come out clean continue to cook the loaf.)

Remove from the oven; let cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack; once it has cooled cut slices and serve; or wrap up to give… eat – that is what I do… eat and it’s the best part!

Apparently I have had a tea time thing going as of late (and for the Palmer Family this week!).  This bread does not fall short of that category and would make a lovely gift.  This is the first time I have used this method where you cook the wet ingredients and then cool before assembling – very interesting and I am sure it will inspire further exploration of ingredients, combinations and other random ideas. As for the taste: I adore the spiciness from both the allspice and the Angry Apricot Preserves, the bread is dense and has sweet surprises with the bits of cranberry and apricot, it was great with hot tea!! As always AJ, love ya and your mad jammin’ skills 😀