Shrimp & Grits

Shrimp & Grits

My first attempt at a non-traditional shrimp and grits

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Jason’s Rooftop

Jason's Rooftop

One of my favorite views of the New York City skyline just happens to be from my friend’s rooftop in Hell’s Kitchen. He’s moving in a few weeks and since I was already in NYC we made a day of it and visited some of the old haunts.

Hallo Berlin
Pony Bar
West Side Steakhouse
Perdition

A fun evening and one last view from an amazing spot. Cheers!

Spring Vegetable and Potato Frittata

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I was thinking about ways to use the remaining spring onions and green garlic that were going to waste in the crisper when it hit me – it’s Frittata time!  I started chopping and about 30 minutes later this is what came out of the oven.

Spring Vegetable and Potato Frittata

4 large eggs (or 6 medium/small eggs)
2 spring onions – sliced into thin rings
2 green garlic – sliced into thin rings
1 large russet potato, quartered then sliced into 1/4″ thick slices
1 clove garlic – finely chopped
3 stalks of Kale, stems removed and then coarsely chopped
1 ounce of sharp cheddar, finely chopped or shredded
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salt, Pepper, and herbs of your choice (I used Fine Herbes)

Preheat oven to 350F.  Boil potatoes until almost tender.  Remove from heat and drain.  Meanwhile, bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook the kale for a few minutes.  Drain well and squeeze out as much water as possible.  In a fry pan cook the potatoes in the olive oil until crisp on the outside.  Meanwhile, put the eggs in a large bowl and whisk until well blended.  Add the chopped onion, green garlic, garlic, kale, salt, pepper, herbs and cheddar to the eggs and blend together.  Once the potatoes are crisp turn the heat down to medium-low and add the egg mixture.  Cook over medium low heat until the eggs start to set and then transfer the pan to the top shelf of the oven.  Cook for another 4-5 minutes and finish with a blast from the broiler to get a nice crisped top.  Serve immediately!

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Tuna Pasta Salad with Lemon and Greens

ImageIt was one of those evenings where we didn’t have much time or energy to cook so my lovely wife threw together this quick tuna and pasta salad.  I’ve learned that tuna salad can be as unique as the individual making it.  It makes me wonder if there is a correlation between a person’s tuna salad and how interesting they are.  With that said, I hope you don’t find us too boring.  Recipe is as follows:

  • 1 can of quality solid tuna in water (or oil if that’s your preference)
  • 8 ounces whole grain fusilli
  • 1/2 spanish onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tsp grated lemon peel
  • 2 Tbsp of Mayonnaise
  • Dill weed
  • Pepper (we didn’t add salt since the tuna and mayo were already salted)
  • Whole leaf lettuce

Boil the pasta “al dente” and cool.  Combine remaining ingredients and mix well without breaking apart the tuna too much.  Combine with pasta and mix gently.  Chill until cool.  Create a bed of lettuce and place the salad on top.  Garnish with any remaining dill and a crank or two of pepper.  Simple and delicious.  Enjoy!

I Dub Thee Oscar the Meyer Lemon Tree

ImageIn spite of the fog and cold summers in the Bay Area you can still quite successfully grow citrus fruits.  Since we have a smaller patio we went with a dwarf meyer lemon tree.  Although the exposure is to the Northeast, the fact it is nearly rooftop will allow for 8+ hours of sun every day.  The only concern will be too much wind and we are prepared to deal with that if the need arises.  This tree is straight, about 4 feet tall, and is blossoming already.  In fact, I am hoping that by the end of the summer there will be some fruit to harvest!  Last but not least, we named this plant Oscar.  As in Oscar Mayer.  Mayer = Meyer!  BOOM!  My cleverness knows no bounds! 

Cheers!

Fresh Morels – A Welcome Gift (I <3 California)

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It’s the little things in life that matter.  We stopped at a local business yesterday and ended up talking to the owner for quite some time while looking around.  The conversation quickly turned to food (doesn’t it always?!) and we were talking in detail about herbs and the love of cooking.  As we were checking out he stopped and said, “I have a surprise for you!”  He went out back and came back with a beat up cardboard box.  Upon opening the box I saw a pile of morel mushrooms.  He grabbed a few, put them in a bag and said “Welcome to Northern California” as he finished ringing us up.  This small act of kindness has done two things:  1)  Raised my hopes about the inherent good in humanity and 2)  Made a lifetime customer out of me

A few hours later I cooked them up.  Here’s my ridiculously simple recipe:

  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • morels
  • sea salt to taste

Melt the butter in a saute pan until nice and hot.  Drop in the morels in a single layer and saute until the juices have been released.  I like a little bit of a golden edge to mine.  Once cooked, place on a plate and sprinkle with sea salt.  You’ll be hard pressed to find a more delicious snack.