March is a such a great month. There are so many things to be happy about. Asheley’s birthday is almost here. That means celebrating with lots of good food, surrounded by our family and friends. We actually also made a reservation for the two of us to celebrate at Eleven Madison Park in NYC. We are super excited about that.
The sun is beginning to stretch out it’s light ever so slightly. I wake up and it’s actually not pitch black. My drive home is spent in warm sunshine. This month builds up my anticipation for all the good things that comes with spring.
But as much as I can’t wait for nicer weather and long sunny days spent outside at my grill and in the vegetable garden, I will definitely miss the warming, winter comfort food that Asheley and I have been grasping onto these past couple months.
We’ve been on this tomato soup binge recently. It’s quick. It’s easy. It’s no fuss, delicious, homey, make me forget about the frigid weather outside type of food. This creamy tomato – basil soup hits the spot, especially with a side of extra-gooey grilled cheese. I make the soup. Asheley’s totally in charge of the grilled cheese. I get yelled at for using too much butter (like there is such a thing as too much butter).
Mother nature has not been nice to us here in New York the past couple of months. The most recent gift was Blizzard Nemo, which dumped almost three feet of snow on our doorstep. I know some of you are laughing at me right now, since three feet of snow for you is just another typical Monday morning. But for us, it’s as unlikely as me running a marathon. Without a plow in sight for two days, Asheley and I were snowed in and confined to eating whatever food we had inside. We were totally elated when we opened up the freezer and saw a full stock of chili. It’s the perfect winter comfort food on those cold, blistery days.
I actually made a giant batch of the stuff the week prior for a friend’s Super Bowl party. That’s the beauty of chili. It freezes incredibly well. I always make as much as my two giant stockpots can handle, and then freeze individual sized portions for super quick, easy weeknight meals. It’s one of the few times Asheley and I actually get excited for “leftovers”.
You are totally going to love this chili, because it’s chock-full of secret ingredients (ssshh, don’t tell anyone!) put together into one mega, end-all be-all, chili recipe.
Cauliflower. It just immediately conjures up delicious thoughts, doesn’t it… ehh hem, doesn’t it? …hello?!
I know, cauliflower is not at the top of many peoples list of good eats. However this soup, from Bobby Flay’s Mesa Grill Cookbook, is really great! It gives the humble cauliflower a starring role, showcasing its soft, smooth, velvety texture and pairing it with the flavorful kick of roasted poblano chilis. Perfect for a cool fall or winter day, this thick and creamy soup with warm you through and through!
Sopa Seca, meaning “dry soup”, is a delicious, traditional Mexican dish I just recently discovered. Traditionally, the dish uses rice, vermicelli, or dry tortilla strips cooked with tomatoes, onions, and garlic in a broth. Most of the broth is absorbed during the cooking process, thus the name “dry soup”. In this updated version, I use whole-wheat angel hair (or spaghetti), and there is the addition of kidney beans and a little kick of spice with poblano peppers. This is an adaptation of a Sopa Seca recipe from the January/February 2012 issue of Food Network Magazine. With under 500 calories a serving, this dish provides a good amount of fiber and protein. Even better, it comes together in just about 30 minutes, which makes it a perfect weeknight dinner. But most importantly, it’s delicious:
Today’s post features a recipe that comes from a good friend of mine. She and her husband are big foodies just like Asheley and I. We love talking food, sharing our culinary adventures, and eating good eats together.
Lisa made this soup for us a couple months ago on a cold winter day and it was so warming, so comforting, and most importantly, really delicious! The sausage and potatoes in the soup make it really hearty, and the cheesy baguette crisps that top the soup add so much flavor and awesome texture! I immediately asked her for the recipe and for permission to share this gem on Shared Appetite. Enjoy, and thank you Lisa!
I am not one to make many soups, and honestly am not sure why. I enjoy a good soup, and when I saw this recipe in the January 2012 issue of Bon Appetit, I was intrigued. Not many ingredients, lots of healthy greens from the Swiss Chard and herbs, and an ingredient I’ve honestly never really worked with… feta cheese. The recipe, originally penned by Yotam Ottolenghi, is known for his popular take-out food shops in London where he focuses on uncomplicated and unadulterated food made with local ingredients. This soup is healthy, and it tastes so fresh and light with a hint of richness from the yogurt. Here is my adapted version of his soup: (more…)
One of my favorite go to places for lunch, especially in the cold winter months, is ‘wichcraft. With several locations throughout New York City (as well as Las Vegas and San Francisco), my preference is the one right down the block from Madison Square Park and the Flatiron Building at 11 East 20th Street between Broadway and 5th Avenue. Owned by Top Chef head judge, chef, and restauranteur of all the Craft enterprises (Craft, Craftbar, Craftsteak), Tom Colicchio’s ‘wichcraft is his casual dining soup and sandwich shop. Opened in 2003, Colicchio takes the soup and sandwich comfort foods that we love and cherish to a whole new level of delicious.
The menu features hot and cold sandwiches, soups, salads, pastries, and even breakfast items. Everything is made from scratch and Tom Colicchio is known for his use of high quality of ingredients. He uses greenmarket vegetables and sustainably raised meats whenever possible. It’s his goal in opening ‘wichcraft to give diners the opportunity to experience exceptional food in a casual atmosphere at an affordable price. After placing your order at the register, you can find a seat, relax, enjoy the free wi-fi, and wait for your meal to be brought to you (which takes about 10 minutes). Here’s what I like to order…