Hello again! I've been super productive this evening and once I'm done blogging and cleaning, I'm hoping to get Jamie's mini-care package pulled together. Do you like pulling together care packages that remind people of home? I sure do :)
As promised I've got some recipes from last weekend's PTT dinner to share, supplemented with some gift ideas for that foodie in your life...you know you've got one! I love that all my favorite magazines have gift guides posted. Tonight's installment is inspired by Food & Wine Magazine's Holiday Gift Guide. They've got a ton of fun ideas and here are a few more to marinate on:
Food & Wine Magazine 2 subscriptions for $19.99
There's no denying that this is one of my favorite magazines. I've been known to dog ear almost every page because the recipes always sound fantastic! Plus, the recipes usually have wine pairing suggestions and bargain wine ideas. GREAT read for a food and/or wine lover :)
Tastebook $30 - $35
I started pulling one of these together pre-blog as a way to keep all my recipes. Basically, you build your own recipe book with your recipes and/or recipes from magazines. You can pick from different covers and there are even pre-made Tastebooks for you to choose from. Very cool personalized gift!
Kombucha Brooklyn Home Brew Kit $25
Know a kombucha lover? Why not give them the tools they need to make a batch of their own? I'm a bit freaked out at the whole kombucha thing, but even I think this would make a fun gift!
Gourmet Sea Salts vary with size and type
All salts are not created equal. I've always been curious about the different types of sea salts out there and so far Fleur de Sel and Himalayan Sea Salts have piqued my interests. Most of the websites I've visited have at least 10 varieties, including Smoked Sea Salt. You can definitely find a variety sample pack out there!
Cuisinart Mini Food Prep $30
Best. Doodad. Ever. I have an older one that I actually use more than my full size food processor. It's great for everyday use or even for big Thanksgiving feasts ;) Compact and powerful. A must have in every kitchen!
Color Coded Cutting Boards $15 for a set of 4
Safety first! These silicone boards are color (and picture!) coded so you avoid cross contamination and all that gross germy stuff!
Microplane Grater $15
I think this is a must have item. I got a mini one a few years ago and love it. In fact, I think I started using citrus zests because of it! Shh...I've also been known to use it for grating cheeses, spices and even garlic!
The Momofuku Cookbook by David Chang $26 online
Ok, unless you are currently living under a rock (or maybe not so into the foodie scene), you are probably familiar with all things Momofuku - Noodle Bar, Ssam Bar, Momofuku Ko, and Milk Bar (did I catch them all??). Last time I was in NYC for a fine dining experience, my sister and I almost made it to (I think) Noodle Bar but passed on it since they didn't take reservations. I've only heard excellent things about the food and the pictures alone make me drool at my computer. Amazon's preview of the book shows some fairly reasonable recipes if you have access to Asian condiments and sauces.
Mini Paella Kit $50
I've mentioned my love of LaTienda.com before and I've also mentioned the Mini Paella Kit (that definitely serves more than 2) - it's packaged neatly and ready to give as a gift! They've also got a ton of fun goodies and gift packages on their website so check it out! :)
What fun food/kitchen gadgets have you received lately? Any you've been eyeing??
Or perhaps you've just been eyeing Thanksgiving goodies and are waiting for some recipes ;p
I've got THREE for you tonight! Ready?
Goat Cheese and Sun-dried Tomato Tarts
1 package Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets (thanks, FoodBuzz Tastemaker Program!)
1 4-oz log goat cheese
1/4 c caramelized onions (see recipe that follows)
1 jar sun-dried tomato halves in oil
1 1/2 tbsp fresh (or dried) thyme, minced
flour for dusting
Flour a flat surface and roll puff pastry out. You want to be able to cut 16 squares/rectangles from the sheet. With a knife, score a square within the square so you create about a 1/8" to 1/4" border for your filling. Set aside and preheat oven to 375.
In a small bowl combine goat cheese, thyme and salt and pepper to taste; set aside. Slice sun-dried tomatoes in half crosswise until there are enough for all the tarts.
Lightly spray cookie sheet with olive oil and begin assembling tarts. Place a small spoonful of cheese mixture in the middle of the square, top with some caramelized onion and a piece of sun-dried tomato. Bake for 10 minutes or until pastry turns golden brown.
1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp sugar
1 tbsp water
Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add onions and saute until translucent. Drop heat to low and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in balsamic vinegar, sugar and salt and cook for another 10-15 minutes stirring occasionally and slowly adding water if mixture looks too sticky.
Baked Flatbread with Brie, Caramelized Onions and Pears
1 package tandoori naan (I used the WF brand that has 4 in a pack)
3/4 c caramelized onions
1 wedge brie, thinly sliced
1 ripe pear, thinly sliced
Place slices of naan on a baking sheet and layer first with caramelized onions, brie and then pears. Broil for 3-5 minutes or until brie starts to melt and naan looks toasty. Slice into triangles and serve immediately.
Horseradish Shrimp with Bacon
(makes 30 pieces)
30 large shrimp, tail on
15 pieces bacon, cut in half crosswise
2 tbsp horseradish sauce
1/2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp Tabasco sauce
1 tbsp cocktail sauce
Preheat oven to 375 and line a cookie sheet with foil. In a small bowl, combine horseradish, Worcestershire, Tabasco and cocktail sauces. Reserve all but 1 tablespoon of the mixture for serving.
To assemble shrimp, lay one piece of bacon on a cutting board. Smear a SMALL amount of horseradish mixture onto the bacon, place shrimp on top, wrap and secure with toothpick. One tablespoon of mixture should be more than enough for 30 pieces.
Bake for 10 minutes or until shrimp looks pink and bacon is crisp. Drain cookie sheet halfway through cooking if needed. Serve with reserved horseradish sauce.
Enjoy and keep an eye out for travel-friendly gift ideas!