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Decide The Menu with Chef Keira Moritz

11 Jan

This Past Saturday I had the chance to meet up with my Atlanta Food Bloggers at Pacci Ristorante in Midtown. The Ristorante is an Italian menu that is located inside of the Palomar Hotel. This was my first time at Pacci Ristorante and WOW from the moment you walk in the place, it’s Amazing!! Shortly after I had arrived we met Executive Chef Keira Moritz!! I really didn’t know what to expect but I was taken away by her charm.  She’s a southern girl, pretty and down to earth! Chef Keira had talked with us a little about how she had ened up at Pacci. Then Chef invited us to go up to her kitchen on the roof top which is a Bar/Lounge called AltoRex.

This was my first experience being right in a restaurant kitchen and seeing how they cook and prepare the food. Chef Keira and her crew,  made up 4 wonderful dishes for us! The first dish was a Grilled Caesar Salad, I love caesar salads but having them be grilled adds a extra smokey flavor to them. I also video taped Chef as she was preparing the Grilled Caesar Salad. (click here to watch)

 

Grilled Caesar Salad 

One head of Romaine lettuce cleaned and cut in half

For the dressing

1 clove of garlic (finely chopped)

1/3 cup of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

8 anchovy fillets (chopped)

1 ½ Tablespoons of Worcestershire Sauce

1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard

Pinch of ground pepper and salt (to your taste)

Juice of 1 Lemon

1 “coddled” egg (one minute in boiling water, then cooled, peeled and added in entirety)

 

In a large wooden salad bowl, mash the garlic with a fork.

Add chopped anchovy fillets, Worcestershire, mustard, lemon juice, and coddled egg.

Blend with garlic mash the anchovies really well.

Mix in the olive oil, sparingly, with a fork until it is well incorporated.

The dressing should appear “creamy”

Taste it to see if you have added just the right amount of olive oil, salt, pepper and lemon.

I’m posting a few other photo’s from this event and the food that Chef Keira had made. It was truly an amazing day spent with a Chef, and foodie friends!Strozzapreti: Priest Stranglers

Strozzapreti: Priest Stranglers

3 Pounds Russet potatoes
2 eggs
1 ½ – 2 cups all-purpose flour
Scant freshly grated nutmeg
Kosher salt
Pre heat the oven to 425 degrees F
Spread a layer of kosher salt on a baking sheet and arrange the potatoes on top, this will allow heat to circulate 360 degrees around the potatoes until a bit overcooked, about 45 minutes. Let sit until cool enough to handle, cut in half, and scoop out the flesh. Pass the potatoes through a potato ricer or grate them on the large holes of a box grater. You should have about 2 cups. Make a mound of potatoes on the counter with a well in the middle, add 2 of the egg yolks, nutmeg, and salt. Mix in the potatoes and mix well with hands. Sprinkle ½ cup of flour over the potatoes and using your knuckles, press it into the potatoes. Fold the mass over on itself and press down again.
Sprinkle on more flour, little by little, folding and pressing the dough until it just holds together without kneading it work any dough clinging to your fingers back into the dough. If the mixture is too dry, add another egg yolk or a little water. The dough should give under slight pressure. It will feel firm but yielding. To test if the dough is the correct consistency, take a piece and roll it with your hands on a well-floured board into a rope ½ inch in diameter. If the dough holds together, it is ready. If not, add more flour, fold and press the dough several more times, and test again.

Keeping your work surface and dough lightly floured, cut the dough into 4 pieces. Roll each piece into a rope about ½ inch in diameter. Cut into ½ inch-long-pieces. Lightly flour the gnocchi shape.

As you shape the gnocchi, dust them lightly with flour and scatter them on a baking sheets lined with parchment paper or waxed paper. Poach the gnocchi in simmering water until floating, you can do this in batches once each batch is removed, drain and toss with a little olive oil, let cool then refrigerate several hours or overnight. To reheat, dip in hot water until the gnocchi float.

In a separate sauté pan place heat on medium and place # tablespoons of butter and set it to brown, half way there add sage, toasted walnuts. Once the gnocchi float drain and add to this mix. Garnish with gorgonzola.

This was the most amazing Gnocchi I have ever had!! I keep replaying every bite I took, over and over again! I’ve tried Gnocchi before and didn’t like it because to me it felt like I was eating a big half-cooked dough ball…yuck! But Chef Keira has opened my eyes to the New Gnocchi!! I don’t know how she did it…maybe it was her magical touch or Joey’s but somehow they have made me into a gnocchi believer again!! I still don’t think I can have it anywhere but at Pacci!

Chef also made Brown Butter Pear Crespelle which I gobbled that up in one second 🙂 Brown Butter and Sugar who wouldn’t love anything that would go on!

Chef and her crew ended the wonderful afternoon by making smores. Yummy!

I want to give a Big Thanks to Chef Keira and her team at Pacci Resturant in Atlanta for letting us come in her kitchen and taste her amazing food!  Thanks so much Chef.
 
 
 
 
 

 

Saucy’s Seasoning Is Now For Sale!

10 Jan

I am so excited to annouce that my very own blend of seasoning is up for sale on Etsy.com!  Go check out Saucy’s Seasoning at Etsy. ( And Tell Your Friends) Click Here to see Saucy’s Seasoning!

Marlows Tavern

14 Dec

Let me start by saying it is freezing cold today here in Atlanta!! With a wind chill the temperature was 1 degree!!!!  I knew for lunch today I would need something that would warm me up! One of my favorite places to eat year round is at Marlows Tavern. Every time I go to Marlows the food is AMAZING!! I have never ordered one thing that I could say was somewhat bad! Now back to the reason why I wanted to eat their today. So on a cold day or on a day where I need some soup Marlows Tavern is my to go place! They have in my opinion the best “Chicken Queso Soup” ever! I dream of this soup, it’s so creamy and the chicken is so tender with some southwest spices this soup is amazing! Not only do I love the soup I love their  “J.T.’s Kettle Chips” for a starter, then if you’re a salad person order the “Black and Blue Steak”. Now onto the main dishes,  if you need a quick bite order the “Buffalo Chicken Wrap” it’s wonderful. If you want a little more try the “Shrimp and Grits” or the “Infamous Fish Tacos.” I love taking friends to Marlows Tavern to try out new menu items and the staff there is always friendly. With Marlows Tavern being  priced very reasonable you will have a meal that will be enjoyable for you and your friends.

Domino’s new move to better ingredients

13 Dec

So this past weekend my husband and I found ourselves not want to cook. We basically wanted to stay in bed and not do anything! We were watching tv and on a commercial for Domino’s Pizza they were showing these new commercials where they are using fresher ingredients. Also in these new commercials they are putting consumers out on the farms where the ingredients are coming from. I am not a big fan of pizza from these “pizza shops”  but my husband and I thought why not give it a try! We ordered Domino’s Memphis BBQ  Chicken Pizza. I must say to our surprise this pizza was great! Our pizza was hot full of cheese, bbq sauce, onions, and chicken. We ordered ours in thin crust and even the crust was good. I am happy to say that I will be trying Domino’s Pizza again in the future!

English Toffee Candy

8 Dec

With the holiday season here I love to make goodies and give them out to friends and family. One of my favorites is my husbands grandmothers recipe to make English Toffee Candy! Once I became a part of this family they taught me how to make the toffee and ever since I can’t stop!! I usually make one batch just for my husband and I and then make a few more to share. This is really a great way to celebrate the holidays! Enjoy!

 

 

To watch my video on how to make this yummy treat  follow this link. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qcffkH7sW8g

English Toffee Candy
 

 

2 sticks butter

1 1/4 cup sugar

1/4 to 1/2 cup finely chopped nuts

3 Hershey Bars (broken into sections)

Directions
 

 

Grease 9×13 pan with end of butter stick and sprinkle nuts on pan. In a medium pot melt butter and sugar, constantly stirring over medium to medium high heat until mixture becomes smooth and of caramel color. While cooking, it will go through a couple of stages first it will be smooth and fluffy, then separate, then will become smooth again with a caramel color. Once it gets to it’s final stage check with a candy thermometer and the temperature should be 300 degrees. Once you have reached 300 degrees pour the toffee mixture over the nuts in the greased pan. Immediately lay broken Hershey bars over the toffee. When the chocolate begins to melt, frost the top evenly. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or until candy is cold and hard.

Break into pieces with knife and store in an air tight container in the refrigerator until ready to eat! Enjoy!

Saucy Mouth’s Seasoning Salt

25 Oct

So this weekend I worked on making my own seasoning. It started with me going to different stores that sold spices to collect a variety of different types of spices. Once I had gathered all the spices I started to combined them to try to find the type of seasoning that I could call my own! It took me all weekend and lots of testing ( My poor husband and our friends were my guinea pigs) but I think I may have found the right blend! My next step is to start handing out my spice to friends and family to get their feedback. After I have received their feedback, I will start to use it in my cooking videos and also look into bottling it to sell on my website! I’m so excited for this little spice chapter in my life to begin! SM

Minnesota State Fair 2010

1 Sep

If you live in Minnesota chances are you’ve probably been to the state fair at least once. I married a guy from Minnesota, so by default I am now sucked into going to the state fair. I actually enjoy it because it involves lots of food! When I was first told about the fair they said it offers basically anything edible you can imagine on a stick or deep fried. I was looking up the history of the Minnesota State Fair and didn’t realize that this has a history that goes way back. This first “ Minnesota State Fair” was founded in 1859. Only 5 times since it open has it ever been canceled, due to the civil war, polio epidemic, and fuel shortage. The Minnesota state fair is said to be the largest state fair in attendance, and runs for 12 days with labor day being the last day. We attended the fair on Friday August 27th 2010. On the day we went the attendance record was broken and 132,738 people ate their way through the fair. We started our day at 9:30 am walking through the gates where then you could smell the oil and grease being warmed up! We stayed all day and had a great time eating our way around the fair.