Most of my favorite summers were spent away as summer camp. Singing dorky camp songs. Canoeing. Capture the flag. That one summer where I spent four weeks doing manual labor and it was called a “learning experience.” The best times were always had in the evenings. It was great to be able to see the stars and there’s something incredibly bonding about being in the middle of the woods at night. Campfires happened at night. Ghost stories. Fireflies. Bonding chats. Listening to your cabin-mates’ hilarious sleep talking.
With the long weekend fast approaching my mind has been entirely focused on the impending vacation and the fact that in just a few days I will be sitting by a pool in Las Vegas, preferably with a cold beer in hand and reading a girly magazine.
Which means that it’s only a matter of time until I will be enjoying the same accoutrements lounging by the ocean instead. Feeling the warm sand under my toes, listening to the waves crashing against the shore, napping AND tanning simultaneously…aw crap, I got phones to answer.
Happy Monday, team!
I’m pretty darn excited to kick off the week with a little flava -finishing off the comfort food series with a guest playlist from my good buddy (and a music aficionado guru of mine) Sleepmonster. Had a long day? Too tired to cook? Who doesn’t crave a giant container of curry right before crashing to bed? My personal favorite is chicken pad thai. Sleepmonster, take it away…
It’s 2:30pm. You just opened your eyes after a crazy time out the night before. Your head throbs. Your stomach feels miserable. You swear that your blood stream might actually be running with alcohol. What is the first thing you reach for? Advil. The second thing? Water. Third? Your car keys to take yourself to McDonald’s, Arby’s, IHOP, Norm’s or whatever greasy fast or diner food establishment is closest to your house. The below recipe from the Town Talk Diner in Minneapolis, MN may not be an Egg McMuffin, but it will certainly fill up your aching tummy to the brim.
Today we have an AWESOME credit sequence from the show True Blood. It’s grimy, it’s greasy, it’s sexy. Brought to you by the fab Gary Calamar (who also produced the soundtrack):
And if that’s not enough, there’s an entire program on the Food Network devoted to terrible-but-oh-so-delicious eats – Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives hosted by the slightly crazy but generally enjoyable Guy Fieri. Check out a list (with addresses and websites!) of some of the places he visits here.
To make the burgers: Toss the pork shoulder and fat back with the salt and the spice mix and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Grind through the coarse die of a grinder and form into 4 (8-ounce) patties.
To make the spicy kraut: Soak the store-bought kraut in water for 20 minutes, drain excess water. Render the bacon; add the onion and saute until translucent. Add white wine and cook off the alcohol. Add sauerkraut and spices and enough water to cover. Simmer for 1 hour. Cool. Mix in garlic-chili paste.
To assemble: Cook burger patties until medium-well. Melt 2 slices of cheeses on top of each patty. Place on toasted bun and top with spicy kraut.
This recipe was provided by professional chefs and has been scaled down from a bulk recipe provided by a restaurant. The Food Network Kitchens chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.
Music and food have always been two things tied closer to emotion than almost anything else. When you’re in a great mood you want to bop down the street to Ben Lee or The Beatles. When you’re pissed you might pull out some Aerosmith or Alkaline Trio. And especially when you’re bummed out, a pint of ice cream or chicken noodle soup, a warm blanket and some Bon Iver sound really good.
This week it’s all about comfort food and comfort tunes. Like a chef pairing your wine and entrée, I’ll be pairing each playlist with a delectable recipe perfect for when you need a pick me up. We start with a cold day classic: soup. Chicken noodle is of course the most traditional, but below check out a fantastic Rachel Ray recipe for Smoky Sweet Potato Chicken Stoup – I’ve made this one before, pretty sure I messed up somewhere, and STILL had a great dish that lasted for days. Sort of like this playlist (except I NEVER mess up, obvi) – so eat up, team.
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
2 medium carrots, peeled
2 ribs celery
1 large onion, peeled and halved
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1-2 chipotle chili in adobo, finely chopped, plus a spoon of sauce from the can
Salt and black pepper
1 teaspoon dry thyme (eyeball it)
1 bay leaf
1 cup dry white wine (eyeball it)
5 cups chicken stock
1 large sweet potato
3/4-1 pound chicken tenders, cut into bite-size pieces
4 scallions, white and green parts thinly sliced
1/4 cup cilantro leaves, a generous handful, roughly chopped
1/2 cup sour cream, for garnish (optional)
Heat a soup pot over medium-high heat with two tablespoons of EVOO, about two turns of the pan.
While soup pot heats, chop carrots in half lengthwise then slice into thin half moons. Add the carrots to the pot while it heats, stirring to coat the carrots in the EVOO. Chop and drop in celery and onion, chopping as small as you can, but don’t make yourself crazy. Add the garlic, chipotle, and adobo sauce and stir to combine. Season the veggies with salt, pepper, thyme, and bay leaf. Cook the veggies together for one minute. Add the wine and reduce a minute. Add the stock to the pot, cover the pot, and raise heat to high. Bring the stoup to a boil, remove the cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
Peel and cut the sweet potatoes into quarters lengthwise, then thinly slice into bite-size pieces. Add the cut chicken and sweet potatoes and simmer five minutes until sweet potatoes are tender and chicken is cooked through. Turn the heat off and add the scallions and cilantro. Serve each portion of stoup with a dollop of sour cream on top.