I like making people happy. It’s pretty much the best thing about being a bartender. Well, that and the tequila. And let me tell you, there aren’t many things that make people happier than punch – not to the face, but rather, in a bowl. Preferably with pretty ice and a few fists full of booze. This Philadephia Fish House Punch is certainly no exception. Taken directly from the pages of the one and only Jeffrey Morgenthaler’s new, and aptly named, “The Bar Book”, my favorite part of this punch (and future punches no doubt) was making the vacuum-sealed oleo saccharum. There’s something eerily satisfying about mechanically sucking all the air out of a plastic bag until it’s hard enough to use as a frisbee. Trust me, you’ll want one of these. And all things considered they aren’t that pricey. Personally, I can’t wait to start using it for marinades. In the meantime, let’s keep the party going this week with a big (gl)ass bowl of punch!!
This recipe requires some prep a day in advance, so be sure to read the directions carefully.
Summer has been a little crazy ’round these parts. Let’s just say that it’s truly a season of celebration. I’ll explain more later, but for now you’ll have to trust me. Regardless, we thought it would be the perfect time to revist our ricotta crostini party – this time, spicing things up with an assortment of cheeses and more of our favorite seasonal toppings. Sadly, my nacho cheese and pickled jalapeno crostini didn’t make the cut! I guess I better stick to the cocktails. Hopefully our little summer crostini party inspires your inner party animal and gives you some creative ideas for your next gathering. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some eating to do . . .
Ice cream week here at HonestlyYUM wouldn’t be complete without a roundup of some of our favorite scoops from around the Bay. I can proudly say that we truly boast some of the best ice cream, well, just about anywhere! Hopefully this list is helpful for those of you visiting the SF Bay Area. And locals, please chime in with your favorites – inevitably I left out some well-deserving spots (there are so many amazing choices!!!). I definitely plan on heading back out for a few more cones this weekend. Speaking of which, don’t forget to stop by Fentons Creamery’s 120th anniversary celebration this Sunday, July 20th, from 12-3pm for some serious ice cream fun!
Coconut Chocolate Chip Almond (Vegan) – Ice Cream Bar, San Francisco
This 1930’s style soda fountain in Cole Valley has floats, phosphates, shakes and sundaes – not to mention some of the best ice cream I’ve EVER eaten – vegan or not.
One of San Francisco’s oldest ice cream parlors, Mitchell’s knows a thing or two about making ice cream. In fact, I’d drive days for a scoop of their Ube (purple yam). Luckily, it’s just right across the Bay in the Mission district.
People are always surprised to hear that I love my vanilla ice cream with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt. And then when I insist they try it – I get great pleasure in knowing that I’ve convinced them that it is, indeed, a winning combination. The grassiness and fruitiness of extra virgin olive oil and the delicate brininess of the sea salt flakes brings out the flavor of the vanilla and adds a wonderful, rich subtleness to the ice cream. It’s simply divine and if you haven’t tried it . . . well, give it a try and let me know what you think!
It’s important to use the best ingredients here. Use your very best dipping olive oil, flakey salt and the best vanilla ice cream you can find.
You can’t buy happiness but you can buy ice cream. Whenever we’re in the mood for scoopfuls of creamy, ice cold delights, we head to Oakland’s Fentons Creamery – the oldest continuously operating creamery west of the Mississippi. Founded in 1884 by Elbridge Seth Fenton, it’s the birthplace of flavors like Toasted Almond, Swiss Milk Chocolate and Rocky Road! With Fentons’ 120th anniversary just around the corner, Todd and I took a tour of their in-house production facility, where over 50 flavors are made and mixed by hand. Batch by batch. And what better way to end a visit than with one too many sundaes of gargantuan proportions? So good and so classic. Put an ice cream spoon in me!
Before our trip to Florence, I told Karen the first thing we had to indulge in was Neapolitan pizza. And of course, a heaping plate of mind blowing truffle pasta. There is something about Italian pizza that many, including me, have tried to emulate – but have fallen short. But that sure hasn’t deter me from testing pizza dough recipe after pizza dough recipe, searching for that perfect crust. I’m excited to share that artisan baker Ken Forkish‘s “Same Day Straight Pizza Dough” formula comes pretty darn close.
I should warn you that Ken’s recipe is pretty tedious compared to some of the recipes I’ve used in the past – especially when it comes to the mixing part. The physical part of making the dough actually doesn’t take long at all – it’s the amount of time you’ll need to let the dough rest throughout the process that requires a bit of pre-planning. But the fermentation allows the dough to develop some amazing flavors, making this pizza dough recipe my favorite thus far.