A Foodies Dream: I Owe It All To Spaghetti

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Sophia Loren greatly said: “Everything you see I owe to spaghetti.” 

Did Sophia mean her thighs or her boobs? Either way, this week we’re following in Sophia’s footsteps by visiting the good old fashioned spaghetti plate that we all know and love. There’s nothing more comforting than a hot plate of spaghetti. It reminds me of childhood–when I could slurp my noodles and blow bubbles in my milk without getting funny looks from people.

Oh wait, I always got funny looks for that.

Before we get into the recipe you guys are here for, I have to tell you about one of the best Italian restaurants in Los Angeles. It’s called Palermo and it’s located in the Los Feliz neighborhood of L.A.

palermo A Foodies Dream: I Owe It All To Spaghetti

Palermo is one of the most understated restaurants in the neighborhood but you have to go. Try their pizza rossa (pictured below) and then email me to tell me thank you for sending you to the most delightful place on the planet. I also devour their lasagna, but order a small serving. Their portions ain’t no joke. Their spaghetti is also divine.

pizza rosa A Foodies Dream: I Owe It All To Spaghetti

Photo by Kelly Bone

I’m hungry for some pizza rossa now. Thanks a lot. (I realize this has nothing to do with spaghetti.)

I first went to Palermo with my friend Lydia. She said the first time she went, she saw Vince Vaughn. And it’s no surprise. The walls in the foyer of the restaurant are lined with autographed photos of actors and important people who’ve eaten there. And besides that, Lydia is also an actress who has been in films like The Holiday and met Tom Hanks in The Terminal. When we walked into Palermo the first time, the owner of the place (it’s a family owned establishment), Tony, came by to say hi to Lydia. Next thing we knew, we had an order of fried mushrooms delivered on the house. They were good.

                                       

I decided I love Ree Drummond, partly because she’s so adorable and partly because she was a blogger before she was a Food Network Personality. So today’s recipe hails from her kitchen. Or her website. Or both.

pasghetti A Foodies Dream: I Owe It All To Spaghetti

Spaghetti Sauce
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 18
Ingredients
  • 5 pounds Ground Beef (I Used Ground Round)
  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 whole Large Yellow Onions, Diced
  • 2 whole Green Bell Pepper, Seeded And Diced
  • 6 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 cup White Wine (or Low Sodium Beef Broth If You Prefer)
  • 2 cans 28 Ounce Crushed Tomatoes
  • 1 can (14 Oz. Size) Crushed Tomatoes
  • 1 can (small, 4-ounce) Tomato Paste
  • 1 jar Good Storebought Marinara Sauce (can Use Another Jar If You Like The Sauce To Be More Saucy Than Meaty)
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Oregano
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Thyme
  • 4 whole Bay Leaves
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • ½ teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper (optional)
  • ¼ cup Finely Minced Fresh Parsley (or 3 Tablespoons Parsley Flakes), More To Taste
  • 1 whole Rind From One Wedge Parmesan (optional)
  • ½ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese (optional)
  • 2 pounds Spaghetti, Cooked Al Dente And Tossed With Olive Oil
  • Extra Minced Parsley, For Serving
  • Extra Parmesan Cheese, For Serving
Instructions
  1. IMPORTANT: This recipe can be cut in half.
  2. In a large pot over medium-high heat, brown the ground beef until browned. Remove meat from pot with a slotted spoon and put into a bowl. Set aside.
  3. Discard any grease in pot, but do not clean the pot. Drizzle in olive oil. When it is heated, throw in the diced onion and diced bell pepper. Stir it around for 1½ minutes, then add the garlic. Stir and cook for an additional minute.
  4. Pour in the wine and allow it to bubble up and reduce for about 1½ minutes. Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and marinara sauce. Stir to combine, then add oregano, thyme, sugar, salt, bay leaves, and crushed red pepper (if using). Stir, then add cooked ground beef and stir to combine. Place the lid on the pot and allow to simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Add a little water or some low-sodium broth if it needs more liquid.
  5. After an hour, add the minced parsley and the rind from a wedge of Parmesan (or grated Parmesan if you prefer--or both!) Stir to combine, then put the lid back on and allow it to simmer for another 30 minutes or so. Discard bay leaves before serving.

Photo Source.

A Foodies Dream is a weekend feature, including the best food recipes I’ve found online. All of which I’m dying to try. I’m a foodie and if you’re reading this, you probably are, too. Happy eating & enjoy the foodies dream! Let me know in the comments if you try any of these recipes (or if you adapt any to your own taste). This week’s theme is Spaghetti. 

Eat With Your Eyes

Today’s post is all visual, courtesy of Swedish food stylist and photographer Linda Lomelino. Since I don’t speak Swedish, I can’t necessarily link you to the recipes, but if you do read Swedish, you can find them here or on Linda’s website. These are the most stunning desserts I’ve ever seen. I just had to share!

linda Eat With Your Eyes

linda2 Eat With Your Eyes

linda 3 Eat With Your Eyes

Photos by Linda Lomelino of Call Me Cupcake.

Too rich and divine looking for you? Julia Child aptly said: “The only time to eat diet food is while you’re waiting for the steak to cook.” Maybe we should heed her advice and try something as beautiful as these desserts.

A Foodies Dream is a weekend feature, including the best food recipes I’ve found online. All of which I’m dying to try. I’m a foodie and if you’re reading this, you probably are, too. Happy eating & enjoy the foodies dream! Let me know in the comments if you try any of these recipes (or if you adapt any to your own taste). This week’s theme is “Eat With Your Eyes.” 

A Foodies Dream: Oven-Fried Chicken

Who doesn’t love fried chicken? When it’s done well, it’s one of my favorite foods. Pair it with some homemade mashed potatoes and I’ve just died from happiness.

This week’s recipe is for oven-fried breadcrumb crusted chicken drumsticks, so you don’t get all that grease from pan frying the chicken. And baking chicken is way easier than standing over a hot frying pan to cook.

Bread crumbs have become a staple in my house lately, but truth be told I’m still learning how to use them. In fact, I recently told my boyfriend that I was going to start a food blog about all the recipes I mess up. To which he said, “The only way to become a good cook is by practicing.” And then I said, okay and continued to mess up some perfectly good biscuits and gravy.

The good news is, I made this recipe on Thursday night and we both loved it. I served it with some Parmesan risotto and steamed broccoli. I think the flavors were perfect together and I loved this chicken so much I went back for…well, a lot.

So, without further ado, here’s today’s fully tested and fully loved recipe. I hope you love it as much as I did!

RECIPE – Oven-Fried Breadcrumb Crusted Chicken Drumsticks

chicken A Foodies Dream: Oven Fried Chicken

Photo source: The Two Bite Club

5.0 from 1 reviews
Oven-Fried Breadcrumb Crusted Chicken Drumsticks
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Serves: 3
Ingredients
  • 6 chicken drumsticks
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 4 tbsps butter
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsps parmesan cheese
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp dried basil
  • ¼ tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • olive oil
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Melt the butter in microwave. Put the butter in a casserole dish or baking pan.
  2. Meanwhile, in a shallow dish whisk together the egg and the water. In another shallow dish, combine the breadcrumbs, Parmesan, salt, paprika, garlic powder, oregano, basil and black pepper.
  3. Dip the drumsticks in the egg mixture followed by the breadcrumb mixture, pressing the coating firmly onto each piece. Put the drumsticks into the pan of melted butter and drizzle them with olive oil.
  4. Bake the chicken for 30 minutes, flip then continue to bake for an additional 15 minutes.

The original recipe and photo comes from The Two Bite Club but was modified. Original recipe here. Our version omitted the onion powder because onion powder is just plain gross.

A Foodies Dream is a weekend feature, including the best food recipes I’ve found online. All of which I’m dying to eat again. I’m a foodie and if you’re reading this, you probably are, too. Here’s a few of my favorite foodie pins from Pinterest this week. Happy eating & enjoy the foodies dream! Let me know in the comments if you try any of these recipes (or if you adapt any to your own taste). This week’s theme is oven-fried chicken.

What We Ate: Tomato-Cream Sauce with Tortellini

I’ve interrupted the weekend Foodies Dream series for this post in the new series “What We Ate.” I hope you like it!

It’s not often that our homemade dinners are featured on this blog, but I couldn’t help blogging about what we ate last night. Mostly because C. is becoming one of my favorite chefs and this meal was seriously one of the best things I’ve eaten in years. I’m starting to wonder if my boyfriend missed his calling as a chef.

photo2 1024x1024 What We Ate: Tomato Cream Sauce with Tortellini

Tonight C. made a tomato-cream sauce with tortellini and served it with oven-roasted asparagus. He even bought my favorite white wine, Stella Rosa. (I swear I’m an unpaid evangelist for Stella Rosa wine. I tell everyone about how delicious it is and some of my friends serve it exclusively at their parties now.)

Here’s what the final dish looked like. Original recipes are below, along with the sources we pulled them from. We modified each recipe, so I’ve included notes on what we changed.

photo1 1024x1024 What We Ate: Tomato Cream Sauce with Tortellini

Tomato-Cream Sauce

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can Italian-style diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon butter

 Directions:

In a saucepan, saute onion and garlic in olive oil over medium heat. Make sure it doesn’t burn. Add tomatoes, basil, oregano, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and continue to boil 5 minutes or until most of the liquid evaporates. Remove from heat; stir in whipping cream and butter. Reduce heat and simmer 5 more minutes.

Note:

We didn’t add sugar so I left that out of the recipe, but the original source is below. We also add onions, because I didn’t have any! It turned out amazing without them and in fact, the sauce was very sweet, so I recommend cutting out the sugar anyway. I’ve noticed some people added fresh basil to theirs (would be delicious) and pureed the sauce before serving it. The texture didn’t bother me, but these are tips you might try at home.

Original recipe source. We modified this version.

Oven-Roasted Asparagus

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch thin asparagus spears, trimmed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese (we used shredded)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Place the olive oil and garlic in a small bowl. Mix well. Then place the asparagus in a mixing bowl, and drizzle with olive oil/garlic mixture. Toss to coat the spears. Arrange the spears onto a baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Bake in the preheated oven until just tender, 12 to 15 minutes depending on thickness. Sprinkle with lemon juice just before serving.

Original recipe source. We modified this version.

 

A Foodies Dream: Chimichurri Recipe

The first time I tasted chimichurri was in Westlake Village at a place called Galletto Bar & Grill, which I frequented often. I went a few months ago and ordered my favorite dish-the Brazilian Chicken (pictured below). It’s utterly amazing. I think this dish changes my brain every time I eat it because it’s just so good. The black beans and rice, combined with the acidity in the chicken and chimichurri make for a perfect blend of flavors that seem to dance in your mouth as you’re eating.

chimichurri sauce A Foodies Dream: Chimichurri Recipe

Via @thereallisakerr on Instagram

I didn’t know what the amazing green sauce was on the plate until my boyfriend (who ordered the seared tuna) did some research. He showed up one day to the house with chicken kebabs and a jar of it. The jar didn’t have the same flavor as Galletto’s, but it peaked my interest into what makes a good chimichurri and where it actually comes from. I mean, we could go to Galletto every single night for dinner, but we probably won’t.

seared tuna A Foodies Dream: Chimichurri Recipe

The seared tuna at Galletto, which was really amazing.

So what is chimichurri and why am I so into it? Chimichurri is an herb-based condiment that hails from Argentina. It’s usually used for grilled meat and is made up of parsley, garlic, olive oil, oregano and vinegar. Quite simple, really, but if you want to know more about the history of chimichurri, here’s a bit more: 

The origin of the word chimichurri is unclear. One story says it is a corruption of English words, most commonly the name Jimmy Curry or Jimmy McCurry, supposedly a meat wholesaler.

The Argentine gourmet Miguel Brascó claims that the word chimichurri came about when the British were captured after the failed British invasions of the Río de la Plata in 1806-1807. The prisoners asked for condiments for their food, mixing English, aboriginal and Spanish words. Still other stories say the name of the sauce comes from the Basque settlers who arrived in Argentina in the 19th century, and the name of the sauce comes from the term tximitxurri, loosely translated as “a mixture of several things in no particular order.”

But Perbacco chef, and food scholar, Staffan Terje says that chimichurri is practically identical to the Sicilian salmoriglio sauce. Salmoriglio is used mainly on seafood and vegetables, while chimichurri is used mainly on grilled meat. Both sauces are incredibly versatile and may be used as marinades and finishing sauces as well as salad dressings. They are good on meat, poultry, fish and vegetables. (More here.)

But what we all really want to know is how to make our own chimichurri at home? The kind that brings back that ‘dance in the mouth’ kind of flavor from Galletto? I’ve searched online and found a simple chimichurri recipe from the website Laylita’s Recipes. It’s easy. It’s simple and it looks mouthwatering.

d1f58fbc4d5c83f5e7ad3f5b92cd6340 A Foodies Dream: Chimichurri Recipe

Chimichurri Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups fresh parsley leaves
  • 6 basil leaves
  • Leaves from 3 oregano sprigs
  • 4 garlic cloves, whole or crushed
  • 3 tbs vinegar, can use white wine vinegar, red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 6 tbs of oil
  • 1-2 tsp chili powder, more or less based on your preference
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in the blender (or mini food processor), mix until you have a smooth sauce. For a more rustic chimichurri, blend all the ingredients except the oil and then stir it in at the end.
  2. Taste and adjust salt/pepper or chili powder as needed. You can also adjust the amount of vinegar based on the acidity level that you prefer.
  3. Refrigerate until ready to use (but should be used the same day).

Bon Apetit! 

Original chimichurri recipe is here.

 A Foodies Dream is a weekend feature, including the best food recipes I’ve found online. All of which I’m dying to try. I’m a foodie and if you’re reading this, you probably are, too. Happy eating & enjoy the foodies dream! Let me know in the comments if you try any of these recipes (or if you adapt any to your own taste). This week’s theme is chimichurri. 

A Foodies Dream: The Breakfast Version

A Foodies Dream is a weekend feature, including the best food recipes I’ve found online. All of which I’m dying to try. I’m a foodie and if you’re reading this, you probably are, too. Here’s a few of my favorite foodie pins from Pinterest this week. Happy eating & enjoy the foodies dream! Let me know in the comments if you try any of these recipes (or if you adapt any to your own taste). This week’s theme is breakfast.

                                         

Breakfast is seriously my favorite meal. If I don’t wake up early enough for breakfast, I still make it (when I’m at home). It’s just something about the comfort of the first meal of the day–when the day is brand new and you have a fresh start.

RECIPE #1 – Buttermilk-Blueberry Breakfast Cake

blueberry A Foodies Dream: The Breakfast Version

 

blueberrycake1 A Foodies Dream: The Breakfast Version

Who doesn’t love blueberries? And seriously, who would pass up breakfast cake? Not me. Pass me a slice. Original recipe and photos here at Alexandra Cooks.

RECIPE #2 – Nutella-Stuffed Cinnamon Sugar Muffins

Nutella Stuffed Cinnamon Sugar Muffins1 A Foodies Dream: The Breakfast Version

31564dbcaf8829b078583b6c6949bd4c A Foodies Dream: The Breakfast Version

Possibly the only thing that could compete with the above breakfast cake are these nutella-stuffed cinnamon sugar muffins. I love everything about these and there’s nothing better than a warm muffin and a glass of milk on a slow weekend morning. Original recipe and photos here.

You can find more on my food board on Pinterest: A Foodies Dream.
Follow Lisa Kerr’s board A Foodie’s Dream on Pinterest.

 

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Something Quite Domestic

kinfolk Something Quite Domestic

C. and I have settled into something quite domestic. We try to rotate where we spend our nights–one night at his place and the next at mine. Sometimes we’ll spend most of the weekend at mine and the next weekend at his. It works well.

Not long into our relationship, he told me he wanted to make dinner for me. I was looking forward to it. They say if a man offers to cook for you, he really loves you, so it was one of the many moments when I knew how deeply he cared about me. Plus, I’m a foodie and I was excited to see if he could actually cook and if he could appease the Great Picky One (aka: me. I don’t eat a lot of foods.).

He whipped together some pasta with Italian ham, olive oil, garlic and made this utterly divine garlic bread. That was one of the many nights I knew he was pretty damn special. (The other night being when he ordered this really amazing pizza. Pizza is my favorite food and it might have been one of the better pies I’ve had in my life.)

                                   

Last night we cooked together as we’ve been doing lately. I was never confident enough to cook for someone but I’ve been trying my hand at it lately (and I made blueberry pancakes while we were camping!). He was coming to my house for the night and I had some pasta. I’m not the most creative cook and I certainly am new to the “cooking nightly dinners” routine, but I’m having fun learning how to cook for the both of us. I planned to make spaghetti and meatballs, but then I found some shrimp in the freezer. C.’s face lit up over shrimp (he’s a huge fan) and I knew I needed to make something shrimp-related, even if that meant a quick thaw and devein of the shrimp.

Unfortunately I wasn’t sure if I had the recipe or the ingredients for the garlic shrimp scampi I’d made a few months ago for my parents, but I figured it was worth a try. I knew garlic, butter and white wine were the staples and I remembered the recipe was easy.

This time I googled a recipe (I didn’t have my old one on hand) and I hated it. It called for a whole lemon to be added into the sauce. It tasted too much like eating a giant lemon with a hint of shrimp and it didn’t call for simmering down the lemon/white wine sauce. I didn’t think it tasted great at all. C. was probably being polite and said his didn’t taste like lemon. I’m not sure if he was telling the truth or not.

We settled in to our nightly TV-watching (we usually watch Chopped or The Good Wife) and then we went to bed. It would have been the perfect night, had I not had a terrible nightmare around 2 in the morning.

Image from Pinterest via Kinfolk magazine.

A Foodies Dream

A Foodies Dream is a weekend feature, including some of the best food pins I’ve found on Pinterest. All of which I’m dying to try. I’m a foodie and if you’re reading this, you probably are, too. Here’s a few of my favorite foodie pins from Pinterest this week. Happy Eating & enjoy the foodies dream! Let me know in the comments if you try any of these recipes (or if you adapt any to your own taste).

                          

Recipe #1 – Lemony Zucchini Tart

Lemon Tart A Foodies Dream

Isn’t this divine looking? It’s a Lemony Zucchini Tart found on Pinterest from the blog Crumb. Original recipe here.

                         

Recipe #2 – Tomato and Goat Cheese Quiche

goat cheese A Foodies Dream

Simply Delicious has this slow-roasted cherry tomato and peppered goat cheese quiche. Yum! I just died (minus the balsamic vinegar, which I could do without!).

You can find more on my food board on Pinterest: A Foodies Dream.

What is a “foodie”? A foodie is a person who loves food and has a refined interest in food and drinks. These pins are just a foodies dream.

Date Night

We haven’t had a date night in awhile. Sure, we’ve watched House of Cards and Archer while sitting on the couch in those sweat pants and shorts that have holes in them but we haven’t done the romantic thing in awhile. Tonight we will. We’re heading to this amazing Thai/Japanese restaurant called Chef’s Choice Noodle Bar which is a local favorite. We planned on seeing Maleficent but we were too sleepy to see it.

Here’s an amazing beer that I had called HooDoo.

image 768x1024 Date Night

The drunken noodles at Chef’s Choice are a favorite of mine. They’re so spicy but I love them.

image1 e1402185405476 768x1024 Date Night

This is downtown Bakersfield, my hometown. I captured a few twilight photos of the buildings and the first photo features something called First Friday which is a street fair for local artists and craftspeople.

image5 1024x837 Date Night

image3 1024x868 Date Night

image4 1024x768 Date Night