I wish I could brag about how these are Easter egg creams, and that I melted down chocolate eggs to make a rich, velvety syrup. But to be honest, that just seemed like a waste of chocolate eggs. And if I was ever caught wasting chocolate eggs ’round these parts, I’d be a goner! The truth is that I’ve been dying to make an egg cream recipe for what feels like forever (for-e-ver). My mom’s a New Yorker, so I’ve had my fair share of egg creams. However, for some reason it took me a while to truly appreciate this classic soda fountain drink. Now I can’t get enough of them. Purists will tell you that it’s not a true egg cream unless you use Fox’s U-bet chocolate syrup. I, on the other hand, had to make my own chocolate syrup. It’s just better in my opinion. Yeah I said it! But if there’s one thing we can all agree on, it’s that the reason this simple egg-less, cream-less drink has lasted over 100 years is that it’s . . . simply delicious.
In celebration of spring, I decided to make the perfect spring crostini. I love crostini because its a canvas for your favorite ingredients and perfect for entertaining. I’ve piled mine with favorites: a pea puree, green onions, water cress, dill and eggs. You could easily swap or add other ingredients like asparagus or shallots. Finish this beautiful dish by garnishing with micro greens and edible flowers.
A few weeks back we had the chance to join a few friends for a weekend away up in Inverness, CA. They have a daughter about the same age as ours, so we all knew what we were getting ourselves into. After a lazy Saturday of lounging on the beach with the babies, and playing ball with the dogs (poor Grizzly hurt his leg) it came time to put the little ones to sleep and bust out the adult activities. And by that I mean, completing an already half-finished puzzle and crawling into bed by 10pm!! What can I say, life changes a bit with a 6-month-old. Not to worry, I still made sure to have a pitcher of cocktails on hand – a simple blend of some of my favorite things: rum and coconut water to name a few. I love premixing a batch of cocktails for small get-togethers like these. Even if, no especially if, puzzles are involved!
One of the first proper meals I ever made was braised lamb shank. I remember how impressive it was that a tough sinewy meat could become so succulent and tender. It became my go-to dinner when I had guests over because of how easy it was to make. I haven’t made braised lamb in a very very long time and I recently re-discovered my love for this recipe! It’s a very straightforward dish to make and in honor of Saint Patrick’s Day, I decided this time to transform my lamb shank recipe into a pie form, although you could simply serve the lamb after it’s finished braising and skip the pie part all together. You may be wondering: why leave the bone in the pie if all you eat is the meat. Well, aside from being just really damn cute, the bone marrow happens to be my favorite part of braised lamb shank– its intense and oily flavor is such a treat. Just suck the marrow like a straw and it comes right out– yum!!
You may or may not know that I’m obsessed with Earl Grey tea. It’s my favorite. So here’s another recipe I’ve dedicated to my love for Earl Grey tea. This is one of those simple, but not simple, recipes. Simple in the sense that making the Earl Grey custard is simple (nothing fancy about this ice cream recipe here). But not simple, in the sense that you need an ice cream maker. This is the one I use and it works just great. The combination of creamy custard and Earl Grey is irresistible!
One of my favorite morning rituals used to involve strolling with my dog down the block to the corner cafe. I’d sit outside on the front patio with my dog and a strong cup of coffee. I was particularly in love with a special spiced coffee that the cafe dripped to order. Several spices were included in the blend, but one in particular sang louder than the rest: cardamom. In the Middle East it’s actually quite common to combine cardamom and coffee. I’m not sure why it’s not a bigger deal out here. That was all a few years ago. Sadly, the cafe has since shuttered. Now I treat myself to my own cardamom coffee, usually on the weekends, along with a bar of Ghirardelli® Sea Salt Soirée dark chocolate. Coffee, cardamom, roasted almonds, sea salt, chocolate . . . talk about a few of my favorite things! The perfect pairing to go with, well, the perfect pairing.