Tag Archive for 'pisco'

What do ya love? Keys to a Successful Bowl-en-tine Meal


So much to love in the next few weeks. Do you love the Super Bowl? Do you love the romance Valentine’s Day? Do you love the one your with? Whatever it is that you love, there are some fun days to prepare for and food is key! Yes- you need to make sure that you have your food ready to go. A fun way to ring in either of those days is to go red, get fired up or go home!

I pulled together a few recipes from the blog to get your Bowl-en-tine juices flowing:

Hot Mess Spiced Nuts
(great name, easy to make, just do it!)

Savory Drumettes (a crispy juicy treat –SEE RECIPE BELOW)

Fondue Pasta
(Cuz Cheese is a Crowd Pleaser)

Red Velvet Cup Cakes (for the romantics)

or if you need to connect w/your inner chocoholic and need a serious dose of caffeine to offer your guests…..skip the mini cake and opt for these amazing brownies with a twist.

The Ultimate Cappuccino Brownie (chocolate = Good)

Lemon-aid Blur (get the party started, featured drink for party of 2 or 20)

The key here is that all of these things can be done ahead of time. For a Super Bowl you can serve the mac ‘n cheese in small ramekins for easy individual servings; for the V-day meal serve the mac ‘n cheese along side a nice salad.

Whichever event you do – make it memorable. Incorporate cool serving ideas and make 90% of it ahead of time so that you can kick-back and enjoy the meal ….and the beverage!

Sue’s Sumac Drumettes

The best part about this recipe is that there are only three ingredients besides the chicken: seasoned salt, sumac and pepper. To find other delicious dishes from Sue go to www.justforlicks.com

Photo: www.justforlicks.com



Savory Sumac Drumettes

Ingredients

2 pounds chicken drumettes
2 ¼ tablespoons sumac (available at any Mediterranean market)
1 ¼ tablespoons seasoned salt
½ teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
Flat leaf parsley for garnish

Directions

Preheat oven on broil at 500 degrees.

Rinse chicken drumettes in a colander. Set aside. Line a 12 x 18 baking sheet with aluminum foil, covering the sides. This makes for easy clean up and protects your baking sheet from scraping any stuck-on chicken.

Line up the drumettes on the baking sheet making sure they do not touch.

Using half of your ingredients, sprinkle drumettes evenly first with seasoned salt, then sumac, then pepper. For even coating, it may be easier to use your fingers. With tongs, flip them over and repeat on the other side.

Broil on the second level from the top for fifteen minutes – depending on the heat of your oven. They should look dark brown and crispy. Take out of the oven. If there are any fatty drippings on the baking sheet, drain them off in the sink. Turn the chicken over and broil for ten more minutes until dark golden brown and crispy.

These drumettes do not have the texture of buffalo wings, which are slightly gooey. These are crispy and juicy. They are so flavorful that there is no need for any dipping sauce.

>Personal Gina commentary – These drumettes are great as an appetizer or to accompany another dish, like mac ‘n cheese. Just be sure to have your napkins ready because your digits will be messy. WARNING: once you have ONE drumette, you’ll have FIVE more. Just. That. GOOD! <

It’s A Pisco Party

A delightful alternative pisco beverage

A dlightful alternative pisco beverage

I have the honor of being the celebratory guest blogger for my good Twitter pal and birthday gal Iliana Ewen. That in mind, this drink comes with wishes for another great year ahead. Should she wish to hide from her special day, this tasty beverage is certain to erase her memory when combined with laughter, friends, family and a bit of cake!

Three years ago, I met a young gal from Peru named Rosa. We became friends and through that friendship she introduced me to all things Peruvian. While the cuisine is amongst my favorites I must also confess that I have often indulged in the native alcohol — pisco [prounced PEES-KO]. You should know, I have a soft spot for both Rosa and pisco. These two key instigators blended with my Italian heritage are responsible for this seemingly innocent concoction.

But like all bar drinks, this one must have an interesting story and that story is rooted in the origins of pisco.

Pisco- Drinkology 101- facts to impress your friends while under the influence:
– Pisco is both a city and an important port on the Peruvian coast.
– The name originates from the Inca word for a ‘bird’
– Pisco is made from a special grape in the Andes Mountains and dates back to the 1500s
– It is a South American brandy-like liqueur distilled from grapes and is 45% alcohol
– Both Chile and Peru claim pisco as their national drink and are still fighting over who has sole ownership (Rosa says it is Peru that owns it!)
– Most common pisco drink is a pisco sour (but that’s a whole ‘nother story!)

In conclusion, pisco is some serious stuff.

Lemon-Aid Blur
Note Secret Measurement: 2 parts liquid K.O. Be sure to read over both ingredients lists.

Lemon Simple Syrup Ingredients

1 cup sugar
1 cup water
12 strips of lemon zest (approx 2 lemons)

Lemon Simple Syrup Directions

Use a vegetable peeler to remove the zest (or peel) off of lemons before juicing them as directed in the remainder of the drink recipe (called The Blur- see below).
In small saucepan, on medium-high heat mix together sugar, water and zest. Stir occasionally until sugar dissolves. Let stand 20 minutes, until cool. Syrup can be refrigerated up to one week – and is also good over berry flavored sorbets.

The Blur Ingredients

¾ cup lemon simple syrup
¼ cup pisco (or ouzo), chilled
½ cup + 1 TBS fresh lemon juice
4 lemons
6 sprigs basil (or mint for the less adventurous)
ice, crushed

The Blur Directions

Stir together the simple syrup, pisco (or ouzo), and the fresh lemon juice.
Fill six small glasses with ice, fill to the brim and add a sprig of basil.