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The other day I was struggling with the transition from Summer to Fall and decided I needed a new place to look for recipe inspiration. Instead of browsing the web, I walked by one of my favorite restaurants in San Francisco, Nopa, and read the menu in the window. The words "baked giant white beans, feta, oregano, and breadcrumbs" caught my eye. I've never had this appetizer at Nopa, but I was moved to re-create the dish in my own kitchen.
I simply tossed white beans with feta, fresh oregano, and breadcrumbs, then I baked the whole thing. The combination of flavors was wonderful, and it made for a hearty snack. When I make this dish again, I'll mash the white beans together and serve it as a spread for crostini. To get the uncomplicated technique — serve with mixed greens and you've got an easy vegetarian meal — keep reading.
The other night I found myself at Nopa, a San Francisco restaurant known for its great food and equally respectable drinks. My drink of choice was the pisco sour, the slightly sweet, tart, frothy lemon cocktail made with pisco, a regional South American brandy. This is a wonderful concoction and I'm excited to re-create it at home.
If you don't own pisco, you can find it at a well-stocked liquor store or online. The pisco sour and its namesake spirit have been at the center of a centuries-old battle between Chile and Peru, with both countries claiming it their own.
Note that this recipe calls for Chilean pisco, which is sweeter, with slightly lower alcohol content than Peruvian pisco. If you substitute Peruvian pisco, increase the amount of simple syrup and lemon juice according to your taste. To get the recipe to this lovely Latin libation, read more