The first night that we arrived to Santorini, it was pretty late. Our flight had been delayed and we had been traveling for more than 18 hours, but we were determined to eat something Greek. So, we dropped our bags off at the hotel and walked 5 minutes to a local spot called Anoti Restaurant. We ordered a bunch of different things, wanting to discover something special. Lucky for us, Santorini is the home of the tomatokeftedes, fried tomato balls. Holy moly was it savory. The richness of the Greek olive oil paired with the refreshing tang of mint creates an unforgettable appetizer experience. Talk about starting the trip on the right foot!
Whenever I see “puttanesca” on a menu, I think of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, a movie starring Jim Carrey as “Count Olaf.” If you haven’t seen it, I recommend it – wonderfully creepy original soundtrack. According to IMDb, here is the synposis: “When a massive fire kills their parents, three children are delivered to the custody of cousin and stage actor Count Olaf, who is secretly plotting to steal their parents’ vast fortune.”
In one scene, Count Olaf has his wretched friends over and demands that the children make a meal for his guests, using whatever is in the kitchen. The kitchen is absolutely barren, filled with not much more than cockroaches and rotting canned goods. Spotting some pasta in a drawer, the crafty oldest girl decides to make Spaghetti alla Puttanesca. Her smart brother quickly points out that puttanesca is the Italian word meaning “very few ingredients.”
Mozzarella. Abbreviated most lovably as “mootz” and most notably sung in an Italian melody as “moots-ah-rell” at my grandparents’ house. The best pizza I ever had was on the Amalfi coast (in Italy)…. a thin crusted pizza baked simply with slices of mozzarella cheese over a blank canvas of tomato sauce, topped with drizzles of olive oil, salt, pepper and basil. So good – can someone teleport me there right now?
Since I can’t get to Italy right now, I’ll have to make something mozzarella-y in my apartment and pretend. To my delight, the Farmer’s Market yesterday had a beautiful ball of fresh mozzarella, made at a local farm. How could I not grab it? Mozzarella cheese is so inviting – it looks like a mini pillow.
It’s another Meatless Monday and what vegetable better to hold its own than the brussel sprout? For me, it was love at first sight. I will never truly understand why people dread these little guys. They’re so mysterious – are they a baby cabbage? Are they miniature heads of lettuce? They always keep me guessin’.
At least in the culinary scene here in NYC/NJ, they’ve become quite trendy. In the past two years or so, I’ve seen many more restaurants feature roasted brussel sprouts as side options or specials on their menus. Most recently, I’ve seen a lot of shaved brussel sprout salads or “hashes” flavored with chopped crunchy bacon.
Have you ever thrown leftover spaghetti into a frittata the next morning? If you haven’t, you’re missing out! My first year out of college, I used to order spaghetti from this great restaurant in Hoboken. The portions were always ginormous, so I’d save some in the fridge. Unfortunately, unlike Asian noodles, leftover spaghetti isn’t very appetizing. Pasta should be piping hot, creamy and the smell of the sauce should creep out of the bowl and into your nostrils. But what to do with all this leftover pasta? Throw it in a frittata!
My favorite type of frittata is spinach and goat cheese. There’s something about the way goat cheese complements cooked eggs – I just can’t get enough. After starting this blog, I couldn’t wait to make my frittatas with zucchini pasta. The zucchini noodles add a great crunch to this (like al dente pasta – no more squishy leftovers). Just a different way to get your daily dose of veggies…
Guess what? I was featured on Hoboken Mommies, a social networking website for moms in Hoboken, NJ. I wrote an article on making healthy meals for your kids. I know what you’re thinking “But you’re not a mother?” That’s alright – I have a mother, I have friends and family who are mothers, and most importantly, I know healthy eating. Plus, I’m a woman and therefore have a maternal instinct, doesn’t that count for something? You don’t have to be a parent to understand that it’s crucial that our children grow up eating a balanced diet, including plenty of heart-healthy veggies.
If you’ve been following my Twitter or Instagram, you’ve probably noticed that I’ve been spending some time with Jen from HobokenGirl (a Hoboken blog geared towards girls). So, what’s up with that? Well, besides the fact that she’s a cool Jersey chick with an adorable French bulldog pup named Pierre, her audience happens to be perfect for Inspiralized dishes – girls who to love to try new things!
On Tuesday, I went to the Downtown Hoboken Farmer’s Market and stocked up on zucchinis, corn and some fresh cracked wheat bread and headed over to her apartment to cook us dinner. Check out my Instagram and hers for some funny videos from the evening.