Showing posts with label appetizer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label appetizer. Show all posts

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Moroccan Vegetable M'Hancha

Let the Moroccan food parade begin!  Today we're starting off with an appetizer, the M'hancha, or vegetable pastilla.  During our time in Marrakech, boyfriend and I signed up for a Moroccan cooking class, to learn the ways of tagine and couscous.  First we had to locate the riad within the twisting maze of the medina.  Located just off the main place, at the end of a small alley, Riad Monceau boasts a heavy door with multiple locks and a beautiful central pool.

 We were joined at the riad by two couples from the Netherlands and eight Parisian women.  There was a lot of gabbing in multiple languages going on.  I even got to practice my french a bit!  Luckily everyone spoke impeccable english while helping to teach me a little bit of culinary french and dutch.

We were in for a long day of chopping, shredding, cooking, sauteing and tangining.  Is that a word?  Maybe not an english word.  One of the most dangerous thing we cooked all day was the m'hancha, because of all the shredding involved and those dangerous box graters!  (When making this at home, the food processor is much more finger friendly.)

The m'hancha came together pretty quickly, probably because all we had to do was shred vegetables, then roll up the coils.  Our chef/instructor took care of sauteing the vegetables and baking the finished m'hanchas. It may be a whole other story when I go to make these again in my own kitchen!  Give these a try, they were deilcious!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Simple Arugula Salad

It's officially summer in my book!  While Memorial day is the "unofficial start of summer," June 20th is the official start of the summer season, I consider July 4th to be the real beginning of summer.  Why?  The weather has turned hot.  Weekends are filled with fun events.  The sun sits high in the sky during the day and sticks around until late at night.  Fourth of July was also always a great day as a kid.  School was out, there were fireworks and summer was on!

Most of the country has been in a heat wave, with several consecutive days with temperatures reaching over the hundred degree mark.  Here in the New York Metro area, we've been lucky enough to avoid triple digit temps, but it's still been a warm few weeks!  Personally, it makes me very happy. 

I love it hot!  Hot weather means I get to spend the weekends in cute, summery dresses.  Ninety-degree temps send boyfriend and I outside and up into the hills of New Jersey.  The high sun, coupled with some SPF50, has me sporting a tan, something that I haven't done since I started grad school nine years ago. 

Of course, the high temps mean that I have to take a few showers each day and that we've been doing a lot of laundry.  It also means that I've been avoiding my oven and making lots of salads.  Feeling the heat too?  Head to the farmers market and stock up!

What day do you consider the beginning of summer?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Island Sides

The past few days have been feeling more Caribbean-like up here in the northeast. I stepped off the train this morning and was greeted by a hot, humid gust of Long Island wind. Not only is the morning heat very reminiscent of the islands, these afternoon thunderstorms are too!

There is just one big difference between enjoying Caribbean weather while on vacation and suffering through it on a regular day. I try to look presentable when going to work where I don't even bother with mascara on vacation. This humidity is making my hair straightener work overtime! Even after ten minutes with the iron, all of my hard work is undone upon opening the front door!

Luckily I have an appointment at the salon this weekend, where I will cut several inches off my hair. This will make it lighter and easier to curl. The straight-haired days of winter are over. Time to embrace bouncy curls once again! (Which means its also time to confuse my male coworkers with my ever changing hair.)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Poffertjes: Cheese Pancakes

Here we are at last, we've finally made it to Amsterdam.  It's been a long journey through the continent (and you even got to sit out our time in Austria and the long drive across Germany!) and The Netherlands is our country of exit.  After our time in Venice, boyfriend and I headed through Innsbruck and on to Munich.  The Munich airport had a plethora of automatic transmission cars and we were on our way, on the autobahn!

Through Germany we travelled, stopping at castles and small towns, and into Holland, with its speed limit, boo.  We drove our tiny little rental car into the heart of Amsterdam and checked into our super cool hotel.  The front desk held a dish of stroopwafels, delicious little caramel-filled wafers, which we stole many of during our short stay there.

Boyfriend and I weren't really sure what to expect in Amsterdam, but we were both pleasantly surprised.  It's a beautiful city, cross-hatched by canals and green with parks.  We passed by more museums than we could possibly visit with a whole week in town.  We enjoyed a fragrant walk through the flower market and bought my mom some "blue" tulips (they turned out to be pink when they came up in the spring).  We finished up our evening with a table full of Indian food and a late-night stroll through the red-light district.  The very next morning we headed off to Schipol airport and back to the United States, with my new cookbooks in tow.

Mmmm, so gouda...

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