October may mean saying farewell to all that incredible farmer’s market produce but it also means saying hello to pasta month! This week we’ve teamed up with Buitoni to create our ideal in-between-seasons pasta dish. This recipe was inspired by the Buitoni chefs that created for us a simple, but bold-flavored pasta with just a few fresh ingredients at the San Francisco Ferry Building farmer’s market.
Even though squash are at their peak in summer, you can get squash and zucchini almost year round. And right now, some of my favorite citrus fruits start to make their appearances, like Meyer lemons. This versatile recipe can be made with any Buitoni freshly-made refrigerated pasta, which are all made with GMO-free ingredients. I’ve made this one with Buitoni Three Cheese Tortellini — you honestly can’t go wrong with the combination of olives, lemon, herbs and cheese!
I love when people go bonkers over produce at the start of each season. I understand the excitement; it’s like seeing old friends again– oh hey pumpkins, persimmons and pears! I’ve definitely caught fall-fever and am already dreaming of all the persimmons I’m going to eat. The one fall fruit I really under-utilize in cooking is apples. I rarely bake with them and almost always eat them on their own (it’s really the texture I love, I will almost always prefer something in its raw form if it’s super crunchy). So I thought I’d change things up and add apples in a savory recipe.
Apples are perfect with a sharp and nutty hard cheese, like a sharp cheddar or gruyere. This pizza combines Sierra Beauty apples (although you can use any you like) with shredded mozzarella and gruyere and gets even more flavor from pieces of smoky bacon and bits of rosemary. The combo is perfection and screams fall– hope you enjoy it as much as I did! READ MORE
22. That’s how many hand foraged botanicals go into The Botanist‘s dry gin. 9 classic gin aromatics, like orris root, coriander seed and cassia bark, are delicately augmented by 22 botanicals, hand picked from the shores of the Scottish island of Islay. The elements are then distilled in one of the world’s last surviving Lomond spirit still, in an achingly slow, 17 hour distillation. It’s a thoughtful process, from beginning to end – and when you taste the gin, you’ll understand why.
We were lucky enough to experience this artisanal gin firsthand when The Botanist brought their island heritage to San Francisco last week. Before the celebratory event, we collaborated on a fun little experiment by picking 3 Northern California ingredients to be incorporated into gin cocktails. Sage, figs and pomegranate were the inspiration behind 3 of the 6 cocktails served during the pop-up. In addition to a fun little cocktail crafting workshop, Bay Area chef Melissa King created an incredible three-course menu, combining San Francisco flavor with The Botanist’s Scottish heritage. My favorite was the gin cured salmon, which I can’t wait to try to make myself at home! We hope you’ll give this world-class gin a try – on it’s own or in one of our favorite cocktails, The Sage Spritz. Trust us, you’ll love it. READ MORE
We tried 16 of the most outrageous ice cream toppings that we could think of and documented the taste test. Honestly, we expected most of these to taste horrible (on paper they sure sounded disgusting), but we were all shocked by how many were actually really good! This idea was inspired by comments to our vanilla ice cream with olive oil and sea salt recipe— in fact, we got some crazy combos ideas from you all on our Instagram! Todd, Erica and I had different opinions about each of these so we each gave our own rating for these toppings. Have you given any of these combos a try? Do you have any outrageous ice cream toppings you love? Let us know and we’ll incorporate it into part 2 of our taste test!
Furikake: Obvious ocean and salty flavors, but the surprise was the sesame, which really stood out and complemented the vanilla.
Bacon and Maple Syrup: The bacon was really the highlight here, it was like a pancake party in your mouth. Loved the saltiness of the bacon but you almost didn’t even need the maple syrup.
The farmer’s market can be such an inspirational place– seasonal produce in all different sizes, colors and varieties! To celebrate the end of summer, Erica, Todd and I decided to make lunch together with ingredients from our local farmer’s market. Of course, we had to make this trip a little more interesting and decided to add some rules (because what’s more fun than rules, right?). We gave ourselves $20 and could only use ingredients from the market.
One of the first things I wanted to do when we moved into our house was to make outdoor movie nights a summer tradition. Four years and two children later, we finally did it. And let me just say, a tradition has officially begun. Thanks to the Bay Area’s infamous Indian Summers, I’m relieved to know that we still have a couple months of beautiful weather to enjoy flicks in our backyard. The best part about our inaugural movie night was surprising Quincy and all of his friends upon coming home from school. The looks on their faces were priceless. After all, what’s better than getting to indulge in classic theater foods and snacks on a school night? In addition to the hot dogs and popcorn, I loved the idea of changing up dessert and serving Chobani Flips yogurt snacks – especially since they’re available in so many kid favorites, like Mint Chocolate Chip, Peanut Butter Dream and Chocolate Haze Craze. Easy and mess free, it was a no brainer. The set up involved layering a few outdoor rugs and pulling out nearly every cushion we own from inside the house. Comfort is key! All in all, it was a perfect night, and destined to be replicated time and time again.