Wednesday, December 7, 2016

{Tis the Season}: D.M.R. Fine Foods Holiday Pop-Up Shop!

At the risk of sounding slightly (or majorly) cliche, it's the most wonderful time of the year.  The holiday season is uniquely one of the most special times of the year--for all the right reasons.  Connecting with friends and family.  Savoring wonderful tastes.  Celebrating new and old traditions, alike.  And that's where my excitement truly shifts into gear...because my 3rd annual Holiday Pop-Up Shop promises to deliver on them all.

SAVE THE DATE and make plans to join me on Saturday, December 17, 2016, from 12-4p.m. EST at the fabulous Pottery Barn in Lenox Square for a time to remember!  Come out and experience festive, holiday cheer, while tasting, savoring and shopping my small-batch, artisan holiday sweets and treats.  From sweet to savory, there will be something for everyone.  Our goodies are wonderful as hostess gifts, for your holiday menus, and for plain 'ole noshing!

It promises to be a deliciously fun afternoon--and, as always, I can't wait to see you there!

Happy Eating and Happy Holidays!

D.M.R. Fine Foods Holiday Pop Up Shop
Venue Details:
Pottery Barn
Lenox Square Mall
3393 Peachtree Road NE
Atlanta, GA 30326


Monday, December 5, 2016

All the Holiday Feels!

Welcoming the holiday season can be a bit daunting for some.  With all the hustle and bustle that surrounds this time of the year, the temptation to succumb to angst over everything from seasonal food, to decor, to entertaining, and more, can come rushing in.  And that's where heavy doses of fresh inspiration come to the rescue.

I keep the holiday feels and inspiration at an all time high with my 'The Holidays'  board on Pinterest and invite you to take it in as you plan and prepare to enjoy this season and all the holidays we enjoy throughout the year.

Happy Holidays!

Image Sources: 1, 2


Monday, November 21, 2016

{Savory & Sweet}: Herb-Truffle + Honey-Cinnamon Compound Butters

If you know me, then you know how I feel about a good compound butter.  Over the weekend, I decided to whip up two varieties--one sweet and one savory--to add extra flair and flavor to my holiday tables.  And what resulted were insanely good butters that will have you feigning long after the holidays have come and gone.

On the savory side, I took to my pantry for truffle salt (because it's the holidays, you know), and garlic, then I rounded up some fresh Italian herbs to create a decadent Herb-Truffle Butter.  This delicacy will take your turkey, chicken, roasted veggies, popcorn, and more, over the top with bold, savory goodness.

On the sweet side of things, I went for the warmth of cinnamon, coupled with the floral sweetness of honey, for a Honey-Cinnamon Butter that will make you forget what you did with your pancakes, waffles, french toast, muffins, baked sweet potatoes, and then some, before it came along. 

Easy to make and wonderful for sharing, these compound butters are the perfect special touches to your holiday fare.

Happy Eating!

Herb-Truffle Butter
1 stick (4 oz.) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon truffle salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Medley of fresh basil, rosemary and thyme, chopped  

In a small bowl, combine butter, herbs, salt, garlic and pepper.  Place on parchment paper and roll up into a log.  Refrigerate, or freeze, to firm.  Serve and enjoy!

Honey-Cinnamon Butter  
1 stick (4 oz.) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
1/4 teaspoon salt
Splash of vanilla extract

In a small bowl, combine butter, honey, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.  Place on parchment and roll up into a log.  Refrigerate, or freeze, to firm.  Serve and enjoy!

(Cook's Note: Butters can be stored in freezer and refrigerator.)   

Monday, November 7, 2016

Sweet Potato Chowder

Hearty root vegetables are a staple in my cooler weather recipes.  And one that tends to be in heavier rotation and stand out from the crowd in my kitchen is the good to you, good for you sweet potato.  I mean, what's not to like love about this superstar ingredient?  With health benefits galore and the knack for tasting really good no matter how you fix it, I took my sweet potato affections to another level recently and decided upon a luscious, decadent Sweet Potato Chowder.

The delightful thing about this chowder is that it comes together easily (I love a good homemade soup, stew and chowder) and tastes quite good.  And here's the reason for that: it's flavored with curry, which lends both phenomenal taste and color, coconut milk, and has a slight (not overbearing in case you're dubious) hint of spicy kick from chipotle in adobo.  Combined with the sweet, hearty potatoes and other flavorings,  it's a chowder worth making and savoring again and again.

As the cooler weather and holiday season unfold, this is one dish you'll want in your repertoire for certain.  Go ahead and make it...and thank me later.

Happy Eating!

Sweet Potato Chowder
5-6 large sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 large onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons mild curry powder
1 chipotle pepper in adobo, diced
2 teaspoons kosher salt (plus more to taste, as needed)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 quart chicken broth
1 can coconut milk
Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish (optional)
Sour cream (optional)

Heat oil in a large soup pot or dutch oven.  Add onion and cook until they begin to soften slightly (about 2-3 minutes).  Add in garlic and curry and cook until onions become softened and translucent (another 3-4 minutes).  Add in potatoes, chipotle, salt, pepper, broth and coconut milk.  Stir to combine well.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender. 

Ladle 3 cups of soup mixture into a blender and puree.  Add pureed soup back into pot, stir to combine and taste for seasoning.  Garnish with fresh parsley and a swirl of sour cream (optional).  Serve warm and enjoy!

 (Cook's Note: Recipe can be made ahead and stored in airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before reheating and serving.) 

Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens

Monday, October 24, 2016

The Red Rooster Cookbook: A Party, Recipes, & A Whole Lotta Inspo!

If you've been following the blog for a while, then you're likely aware of a few of my favorite things, places and people.  As things go, there's no doubting that books--particularly cookbooks--hold a dear place in my heart and food journey.  And favorite places can never be a topic without New York City being squarely on the list.

Then there's the matter of favorite people.  Over the years, we've done our fair share of highlighting the work and genius of internationally acclaimed chef, restaurateur, author and all-around-dynamo, Marcus Samuelsson.  So when the opportunity presented itself to combine all three during a recent evening of celebration, naturally I couldn't resist.  The fete was a private soiree to celebrate the launch of the Red Rooster Cookbook: The Story of Food and Hustle in Harlem.

Although it seems like only yesterday that Red Rooster opened its doors to the world, now in its sixth year, the restaurant has cemented itself on the Harlem--and New York--food and entertainment scenes for many years to come.  Like most great memories, I still recall the excitement of my first visit (a hot summer's night with faulty air-conditioning that somehow didn't matter, Questlove spinning in the basement now known as Ginny's Supper Club--music has been a staple of the venue from the very beginning--and a vibe that radiated community, pride, and, yes, a whole lotta hustle.)

Several years and visits later, that initial excitement was as palpable as ever, not only for me, but for every person who showed up to participate in this moment of celebration for Red Rooster, Chef Samulesson--and Harlem, itself.  A night to remember unfolded with words of recollection and gratitude from the founders, the local community, and well-wishers from near and far.  Exceptional music, food and ambiance rounded out the occasion in true Uptown fashion.

Back home, with my own personal copy in tow, I'm excited to take in more of the inspiration and legacy found between the pages of this cookbook.  (I already have my eye on a recipe and playlist, or two, to break it in.)  And as the Red Rooster story continues to evolve, I look forward to every delicious nuance.

Happy Eating! 

Buy the Book


Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Apple Tarts

Something about the Fall season has stirred up my desire for baking more recently.  I bought an adorable cake pan a couple of weeks ago and was feeling the urge to put it to use almost instantly.  Apple season is in full bloom, so I was seeking inspiration for a cake recipe that would deliciously showcase the fruit.  But, a curious thing happened, and my cake dreams were eclipsed by perfect, little apple tarts. 

Starting with one of my favorite short-cut ingredients, puff pastry, I piled apples coated with the warm flavors of cinnamon and allspice, and brightened with orange zest and juice, on top with child-like anticipation of the goodness that was about to unfold.  A few extra touches later, the tarts were in the oven to bake to golden perfection.   A dusting of confectioner's sugar, along with a scoop of ice cream to finish, make these easy, yet elegant, tarts one of the best additions to your seasonal eating repertoire. 

Happy Eating!

Apple Tarts

2 large, firm baking apples (Granny Smith is my preference), peeled, cored and sliced into wedges
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
Zest of an orange
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed orange juice
1/4 teaspoon cinammon
1/8 teaspoon allspice
Sugar, for sprinkling
1 tablespoon butter, cut into pieces
1 large egg
Flour (for surface)
Confectioner's sugar (for dusting)
Ice cream, optional

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.

Toss apples, cinnamon, allspice, zest, juice and a bit of sugar to fully coat apples and set aside.  Roll out puff pastry on a lightly floured surface into a long rectangle.  Cut in half crosswise and then cut each half to make a total of four squares.  Transfer dough to the baking sheet and prick with a fork in several places.

Pile apples in the center of each square and dot fruit with butter.  Beat egg and 1 teaspoon water in a small bowl and brush pastry with egg wash.  Fold up the edges around the apples, leaving the center open.  Press along the folded edges to lightly seal.  Brush outside of pastry with egg wash and sprinkle with more sugar.  Let chill in freezer 10 minutes.

Bake tarts until puff pastry is golden, 15-20 minutes.  Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and continue to bake until pastry is deep golden brown and apples are tender, 15-20 minutes.  Enjoy! (Note: Tarts can be baked up to 6 hours ahead. Store uncovered at room temperature.)

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit



Monday, September 26, 2016

{Fall Eats}: A Guide to Apples

Fall has finally graced us with its presence once again and that means many things on the culinary spectrum, not the least of which is the prime season for apples.   As you prepare to head to the orchards, markets, and kitchen to indulge, you'll want this handy primer from Williams-Sonoma, featuring nine varieties, to keep you on your cooking, baking and eating toes.   Whether you're talking cider, applesauce, apple butter, and more, you'll know which apple perfectly fits the bill.

Photo Credit: Williams-Sonoma

Happy Eating!

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