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Posts for August 23rd 2012
I was skeptical of Mionetto's wine spritzer, Il Spr!z, on the outset; perhaps I wasn't quite sure what to make of the bottled cocktail, fearing that it might be a bit too "semi-homemade" for my taste. Or maybe I was put off by its vibrant orange hue that seemed to scream artificial coloring. Regardless, it was long overlooked. But I'm not above admitting when I'm wrong, and boy was I! If I could, I'd redact all negative thoughts toward the beverage, and to make up for my misjudgment, I'll be snapping up a bottle for my next beach picnic posthaste.
This bottle is modeled after a spritz, which is a popular Italian apéritif, traditionally consisting of white wine, seltzer water, and Campari, Aperol, or Cynar, all bitter orange apéritifs. It's meant to stimulate the appetite and act as internal air conditioning on a scorching Summer day. While this bottled version is slightly sweeter and less alcoholic than a standard spritz, it still retains much of the intrigue and bitterness associated with the beverage along with a trace of effervescence, making it an excellent stand-in and the first bottled cocktail that I can wholeheartedly get behind. While Mionetto's Il Spr!z is available in "individual" sizes of 200 and 375ml, I could easily down a whole 750ml bottle ($12) when poured over ice. It's that good.
Watermelon and feta, radishes and butter, mangoes with chili and lime: along the way, I've discovered that certain elemental combinations seem to sing perfectly in tune with balmy weather. Here's another one I'd like to add to the list: tomatoes, mayonnaise, and toast.
The TMT follows a simple equation: crunchy toast plus creamy white sauce plus sweet and acidic tomato equals euphoria. I'm not a huge mayonnaise fanatic, but in this open-faced treat, it adds an element of Southern comfort, while also playing to a certain sense of nostalgia.
Any of the components can be played around with; sub in cherry tomatoes or even fried green slices. Or reach for a garlicky aioli — if you're a true mayo hater, olive oil works nicely, too. Rye bread, sourdough bread, and wheat bread all stand up nicely, but avoid choosing a bread that's too crusty. My favorite combo: giant red brandywines, whole wheat bread, and a generous slather of Hellman's mayo. What's yours?
There is something wonderfully ceremonial about making tea, especially matcha, or finely ground Japanese green tea. Making matcha is a little more complicated than dipping a tea bag into hot water; the emerald-green powder is quickly whisked into a frothy, thick brew. Much like whipping cream, the trick requires a little bit of practice, but we've rounded up a few methods with pictures to help you develop matcha with a beautiful layer of foam.
A traditional Japanese method for preparing matcha calls for a bamboo whisk with superfine tines; however, home cooks can also hack the process using a mini immersion blender or whisk. And while the Japanese take their matcha "green," some drinkers may find the unadulterated mixture too bitter and grassy for their liking. That's why we've included a quick latte recipe for easy matcha drinking. Take a look at three ways to make matcha.
- Last night's Masters was all about Holly Madison and beautiful buns — Grub Street NY
- The USDA says food waste in America is at 40 percent — The Kitchn
- Watch Paula Deen make "healthy" food on GMA — Eater
- Now farmers are feeding cows candy — Delish
- Thomas Jefferson: the first Alice Waters — Zagat
- How to make a little green onion go a really long way — Kitchen Daily
- Fro-yo fruit pops are both easy and pretty — Refinery29
Photo courtesy of Bravo
The kettle chips market is certainly tough to crack, thanks to Kettle Brand's overarching dominance (we're pretty smitten with the brand's Spicy Thai and Cheddar Beer varieties). Nonetheless, we were excited to sample two flavors from a new contender. While the novel flavor combinations may have drawn us in (Tuscan Style Garlic and Herbs and Sicilian Style Asiago and Tomato) we were most intrigued by the choice of frying oil in Olive Coast kettle cooked potato chips. Keeping with their Mediterranean flavor theme, these snacks are made with olive oil, rather than the more common sunflower and safflower oils.
Common in Japanese cuisine, bento boxes consist of divided sections of vegetables, protein, and grains that are carefully arranged in an attractive way to amplify the allure of even the most simple food preparations. They make a tidy take-to-work lunch, too. This Japanese salad, organized in bento fashion, is a fresh take on a fast, easy, and portable lunch option.
The matcha dressing, which draws the flavors of the raw vegetables and tofu together, makes this salad truly memorable. Inspired by a Republic of Tea employee who experimented with The Republic of Tea U-Matcha ($18) in a salad dressing recipe, it was loved so much that the company decided to print the recipe on a pamphlet, which is included in each canister of the tea. I used U-Matcha Yuzu, a citrus-scented matcha green tea, to heighten the fresh, zingy tang of the dressing; however, regular matcha works well in this recipe too.
U-Matcha plays off of the Japanese term umami, the word used to describe the savory flavor in food. Even though matcha in tea form tastes grassy and earthy, when used in recipes like this salad dressing, it bursts with a flavor that is subtly fishy and sea-like (in a good way!).
The sweet carrots, spicy daikon, creamy avocado, tart cabbage, and crumbly tofu combine with the matcha dressing for a color- and flavor-rich salad that engages all the senses of the palate. Prep all the ingredients first, and place them in separate bowls or plastic containers to make it easier and faster to arrange the salad. Bonus: it's a cinch to store any leftovers for another day. Learn how to whisk a batch of matcha dressing for your next bento salad.
These s'mores from Monica Bennett are just as tasty as the originals and twice as beautiful.
Chocolate Wafers, Biscoff (heavenly) Spread, Toasted Marshmallows with Fresh Tart Currants. Can't get enough of these!
For the full recipe, check out her blog, and be sure to upload your latest food-related obsessions with us in the YumSugar Community. If you're on Instagram, then join us by tagging your pictures with the hashtag #savorysight.
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