Boston: Daddy’s Fried Dough

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We saw this on the Food Network Channel late one night and knew we had to have it once we arrived in Boston. It’s similar to the Funnel Cake, but more airy in texture. Our dough was dusted with a generous coat of powdered sugar, fried upon order, and extra crispy around the edges. It was hot, sticky, and sweet! You also have the option to choose other fruity toppings, but we like to keep things simple.

Location – Boston Common. Let your nose lead you there.

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In the Kitchen: Cranberry Philly Cheese Pound cake

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Ingredients:

  • Flour
  • 2 sticks unsalted Butter
  • 8 oz. Philadelphia Cream cheese
  • 1 and 1/2 Cups Sugar
  • 4 Eggs
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp Vanilla
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 and 1/2 kosher salt (cannot use regular salt)
  • Dried Cranberries

Instructions: Preheat oven to 325 F.

Mix the ingredients in this order: butter, cheese, sugar, one egg at a time (learned this in a cupcake baking class), then vanilla. Evenly spread the mixture into the bread pan, thus removing the pound cake will be easier. Bake for 55 minutes.

 

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In the Kitchen: Hummingbird cake with cream cheese frosting

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I had really good Hummingbird cake during my visit in Houston at Ruggle’s Cafe and Bakery and attempted to remake a healthier version.  I normally replace the oil with apple sauce (1:1 ratio) and it usually works for cakes, but this time, it made the cake too tough.  Verdict? Just okay.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 can crushed pineapple (undrained)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 cups chopped bananas
  • Icing: 1 8oz cream cheese + 1/2 cup butter + 16 oz powdered sugar +  tsp vanilla
Instructions:
Bake for 350 for 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.  Cool completely before icing.

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In the Kitchen: Pizza night

New York’s best pizza is in our kitchen. We were craving pizza during the hurricane fiasco, but decided not to order in because we didn’t want to put the delivery person in danger. Finally the ‘cane left and we baked our own.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. pizza dough from a pizzeria (or your own from scratch)
  • Zucchini
  • Pepper jack cheese
  • Shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • Ground beef
  • Tomato sauce
  • Onions
  • Strawberries
  • 2 teaspoons of balsamic vin
  • Fresh parsley

Instructions: Preheat oven to 500 F.

First, turn on the stove on low to medium to pan fry the ground beef. Cut the zucchini to small pieces.  Shred the pepper jack cheese. Cut the strawberries. Dice the onions.

Use your hands to knead the dough. No rollers needed.  Layer on the ingredients in any order.  We played around with the sauce/cheese/meat ratio to differentiate the two pies.  Bake for 10 minutes or until crust is brown.  Spray oil onto the tray or use aluminum foil on the tray.

Recommendations: We originally wanted to use basil instead of parsley; however, it still provided a refreshing effect.  Do not remove the pizza from the oven before 8-9 minutes. I removed one pie around 8:30 minutes thinking that the pie was brown enough, but the dough was still undercooked.

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Date Night: David Burke Kitchen

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Restaurant Week is such a tease.  It’s a snippet of what the restaurants typically offer on the regular menu, but often in smaller portions.  However, at David Burke’s Kitchen, we got more than we expected.  Huge portions. Limited menu. DELICIOUS DESSERTS.

The Pastrami Salmon was served with a side of beet pancakes – unsweetened with hardly any beet flavoring.  Each part of this dish complimented each other, even though they could not stand alone.  The salty salmon went well with the bland beet pancakes, which was perfect with the creme fraiche and pickled red onions.   The Tomato Gazpacho was brought out in a gravy dish and poured around the mousse+shrimp in a shallow soup dish.  This simple, cold, tomato soup was grainy and had a hint of spiciness after each swallow.  The mousse+shrimp was a refreshing compliment alongside the soup.

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PASTRAMI SALMON horseradish / mustard seed / capers

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TOMATO GAZPACHO rock shrimp / lemon / yellow pepper crème fraiche

The theme seemed to be more about display and enormity than actual taste.  The Kitchen Burger – the beef patty was enormous and probably close to 1 lb. The french fries weren’t actually spicy, even though it was labeled “jalapeno french fries”, but did taste like it was fried in lard instead of oil.  It was a greasy, delicious mess. The cheese oozed all over the meat and was garnished with a couple of slices of thick cut bacon.  The Chicken BLT was an open-faced sandwich with two pieces of tenderized chicken.  There were layers of thick cut bacon piled on top of lettuce, red onions, caramelized onions, and thinly sliced tomato.  The entire dish was difficult to eat and soggy/hard due to the meat/bread/veggie/olive oil combination.

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KITCHEN BURGER bacon / cheddar / jalapeno french fries

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CHICKEN BLT CLUB chipotle mayo / taro chips

Dessert was and will always the best part of every meal.  The Apple Tart was just right. The pastry was warm, allowing the perfect pairing of vanilla ice cream and apple tart with every bite, as intended.  The Chocolate Cake was absolutely perfect.  We’d come back just for this.  The cake was built with layers of dark chocolate ganache, peanut butter, and black cherry infused cake, with the top layer being a burnt cherry-sugar coat.  This bitter taste from the burnt sugar toned down the overall sweetness of the cake.  Alongside the cake were spicy peanuts and a lovely house-made black cherry gelato.  Both desserts were rich, but our favorite part of the dining experience.

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APPLE TART vanilla ice cream / apple cider caramel / fennel chip

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Chocolate Fudge Peanut Butter Cake with black cherry and spicy salted peanuts

Overall, we enjoyed our experience at David Burke’s Kitchen.  There was a minor earthquake in progress, but the view and lovely outdoor garden seating made for the perfect lunch date experience.  The service was a little slow, but good nonetheless.

Recommendation: SIT OUTDOORS if possible and order more than one dessert.

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In the kitchen: Mac and Cheese, please.

Baked, broiled, and a whole lot of oozy cheesey goodness.

Ingredients:

  • Whole wheat pasta
  • Unseasoned bread crumbs
  • Cheese (we used Cabot’s Pepperjack + Mozzarella)
  • 2 tbspn unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup of skim milk
  • 1 tbspn butter
  • 2 strips center cut bacon
  • Parsley flakes
  • S & P

Instructions: Bake at 350 F until brown

Boil the pasta and drain.  In another pot, add the milk and flour and bring it to a full boil.  Then, add the cheese and stir continuously until completely melted.  Stir in the bacon, S & P, and parsley flakes.  Add the pasta to the cheese mixture and place into an oven-safe casserole pan.  In a separate bowl, melt the butter and mix with the breadcrumbs.  Spread the breadcrumbs on top of the mac+cheese and bake until brown.

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This brings us back home.

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In the kitchen: Egg Salad

We love PICNICS!!! And what’s easier to pack and make than an egg salad sandwich?

Ingredients: (Enough for 2-3 sandwiches)

  • Paprika
  • Mayo
  • 4 hard boiled eggs
  • Mustard
  • Parsley flakes
  • Dill weed
  • S & P

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Instructions:

Pack the egg salad and bread separately so it doesn’t get soggy and assemble at the park for an easy, no-fuss, Central Park picnic.

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In the kitchen: Caramelized Pork (Thit kho)

Cooking can be difficult. Vietnamese cooking..is absolutely difficult, especially because my mother shares her recipes in unquantifiable measurements.

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Ingredients:

  • 2-3 cups Coconut water
  • 1-2 cups water
  • 3 tbspn fish sauce
  • 1 tbspn soy sauce
  • minced garlic
  • 2 lbs pork belly
  • 4-5 hard boiled eggs

Instructions: Simmer for 2+ hours

Boil the pork belly until it’s slightly cooked, then rinse and cut up into 1/2 inch strips. Add the peeled eggs, coconut water, water, fish sauce, soy sauce, pork belly, and garlic into the pot.  Bring the liquid to a full rolling boil, then keep the heat on medium for the next couple of hours.  The water level should decrease as the flavors inside the pot intensifies.  My mistake was adding too much water and not enough pork belly.  The end result was a flavorful broth with tender, soft pork, but it didn’t taste like mama’s.

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In the Kitchen: Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Rainy days are perfect for baking – especially with simple desserts like cookies.  We bake a lot and usually always have the basic baking ingredients in our pantry.  Tonight, however, my sister came home with another ingredient to add to our already sweet cookies.  OREOS!  These cookies are huge, super sweet, and delicious.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups chocolate chips
  • 1 package of OREOS
Instructions: Bake @ 350 until cookies are light brown Combine the dry ingredients, then the wet ingredients (1 egg at a time) into the mixer.  Wrap enough cookie dough to cover the OREO and place on the cookie sheet.  The dough will not spread, so they do not have to be too far apart.  ENJOY!

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Recommendation: There is a thing as TOO much chocolate.   We’d recommend using 1 cup of chocolate instead of 2 cups because the Oreo cookie already adds a lot of chocolate to the mix.

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Food Truck: KorillaBBQ NYC

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Food trucks are all the rage these days.  It’s about serving up the freshest, high quality goods within the convenience of a truck.  We love the creativity that comes from these moving kitchens and have heard so much about this particular one. However, we were not at all impressed with the food.  Unfortunately, the chicken, stuffed in a couple of corn tortillas tasted like its been sitting around, unstirred, and without heat for quite some time. Surprisingly, the cheese saves that issue. The kimchi tasted good, but overall, the tacos were not fresh.  For 7$, not sure if its worth it. But, only because it is unique and transforms Korean recipes into new dishes, I’m glad we bought it. Looking for delicious fish tacos next. (Korzilla did not have a fish taco option.)

Recommendation: Go for the environment.  KorillaBBQ, along with a few other food trucks congregate around High Line Park on Fridays and there’s plenty of seats, music, and scenery to enjoy.

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