The first time I made risotto, I cried. And not like, oh cute-teary-Demi-Moore-cry, but more like a ugly-face-contorted-Carrie-from-Homeland-cry. It was Christmas and the house was filled. I thought it would be a genius idea to make every single dish for Christmas dinner, from scratch, and all by myself. Everything was going great, totally fine, I mean I was frantic and super busy but I was on my way to Martha Stewart hostess-type success, but then…risotto.
Since it was my first time attempting this dish (and I was 16 years old), I had no idea what was involved. I was way over my head. I started the process of toasting the rice, adding the broth, etc. I’m pretty sure I got distracted by various other things and came back to the pot only to be met with a gummy, dried up, disgusting mess. I was heartbroken. Tears fell. An Adrianna-melt-down occurred. There was lots of, “Oh we don’t even like risotto,” that was said over and over to me.
It took me years to give it another go, but when I finally nailed down the process I felt like a damn professional chef, no lie. Nowadays I really, really love making risotto–it’s actually not stressful at all but it took me a while to get to this place of risotto-calm. I found a few fun facts and tips to help along the way, and I’m sharing them–along with the recipe itself–over on Etsy.
I very big part of me hopes and wishes that you read this blog post title as, “Spaghettiii and a Meat-a-balls!”
I feel like I just talked about my love of gangster movies a few weeks ago but I really do love that scene in Goodfellas where they’re all in jail and they’re like, who cares so what and cook up this like massive feast. Oh and that one guy slices the garlic with a razor blade. So unnecessary but so awesome.
The other day I was driving and had a very weird craving for spaghetti and a meat-a-balls! I mean, it’s not super unusual because I could subsist on pasta every single day, but the meatball part is. I never really think to make them, but whenever I do I’m like, why don’t I eat these everyday?! what is wrong with me?!
So, that my friends is what Los Angeles traffic will do to you: crave meatballs.
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Growing up I had an obsession with gangster movies. It started when I was like ten years old and my film buff of an uncle showed me Reservoir Dogs. When my parents picked me up from his house later that day and I started telling them my favorite lines from the too-grown-up-for-me movie I had just seen, they knew he had corrupted me. My parents were pretty bummed that I now wanted to trade in my Disney princesses for mob dudes, but I’m happy they let me watch all the shoot-’em-up movies I wanted. It made me a more well rounded child, I think.
So, When I used to think of gnocchi, my brain would first think of The Godfather 3, which, by the way, never see. Truly awful. It was the world’s first introduction to Sofia Coppola. She was sitting on a table in a velvet black dress, looking drop dead gorgeous, rolling gnocchi. While the movie was a total bust and super sad because it could’ve been good, the gnocchi scene is still one of my favorite food scenes.
If you’ve ever made gnocchi, it’s hardly diffcult, but much like pupusas, it’s very touch and feel. And I do think making it for the first time might be a little intimidating, so I figured doing a little how to on making gnocchi might be helpful.
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One year ago, on Valentine’s Day, I could’ve sworn I was going to die alone. And I might die alone, who knows, but right now it feels like I might be OK, which feels great! and hopeful!
Two years ago, on Valentine’s Day, I went to dinner with my best friend, Teri, and the server thought we were a lesbian couple. It kind of made us chuckle.
Here’s the thing about Valentine’s Day: I get that it’s about love, cupid and chocolate or whatever, but it’s kind of an exclusive holiday.
It’s like, if you’re psyched to be in a relationship, married, etc., then it’s awesome. And if you’re single and excited to be single, then it’s sort of just an ignored holiday. But, if you’re single and you don’t want to be single, then Valentine’s Day is an annoying holiday.
Since I think exclusivity is just stupid, I’ve made you a dish for you to make for yourself.
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I have different categories of recipes just chilling in my brain. There’s the OMG-I-need-a-cookie-with-salt category. There’s the I-need-breakfast-for-(super late)-lunch-at-4pm. BUT, my most utilized category is the 15-minute-meal-that-can-be-made-sans-store-trip-becuz-OMG-am-I-lazy.
I’m thinking of making this a real, legitimate recipe category on this here blog. If it did really exist, carbonara would be my personal favorite. It can be made in 15 minutes, there aren’t a ton of ingredients and I usually have all of them on hand.
Is it the most healthy? Nah. No. UGH. But, most delicious? Yes. Duh. UGH. On a freezing cold night, carbonara is like a hug in a bowl. Turning the dish into a mac and cheese makes this thing like a gigantic bear hug (that might get awkward) in a bowl.
If this sounds at all appealing, head over to Wisconsin Cheese’s site for the full recipe!
I have a bit of a dilemma. Just a small one.
So, say your neighbor goes out of town and is super nice and hands you a box of fresh peaches and a big bag of avocados and asks if you’d kindly water his plants. That’s it. Just water the plants.
And for the next two weeks you do. You water them. You don’t slack or forget because you pass them to get to your front door so they’re there reminding you they need water. But then a heat wave hits and they start to take a turn for the worst.
And between you and me, these plants were in the wrong pots. Like, they needed more room to grow. So the worst thing ever happens and one of them dries up and straight up dies…on your watch! You start to feel terrible, because while you know it wasn’t your fault, they did die when you were watching them. They were alive and perky when the neighbors left, you know.
So, yeah, it’s not your fault. It was the heat. And their pots. But do you buy them a new replacement plant. Do you do that? That would be a nice neighborly thing to do, right? Or do you just skip it and ignore it and stop being so neurotic?
Serious life questions.
In other news, I fried up these squash blossoms. They’re stuffed with lemon kissed ricotta, dipped in light and fluffy batter and fried ever so lightly. I love them. Recipe and step-by-step are over at PW’s Tasty Kitchen. Jump in.
But fareal, do I need to buy them a new plant? Also, let’s remember that if I buy them a new plant I’m basically admitting that I killed their plant, which I didn’t. I’m a good plant-caretaker, I swear!
Fun fact #1 I learned yesterday: Hiccups can be scary.
Fun Fact #2 I learned yesterday: Hiccups are scary when you have them for more than their typical span of 2-3 minutes. If you’re on minute…oh I dunno…30 (!!), you might have a lil’ panic attack, which will lead to all sorts of googling…WebMd-ing, etc.
Fun Fact #3 I learned yesterday: If you ever want to fall asleep, NEVER, I mean NEVER look up your “symptoms” on WebMd. Every single “symptom” seems to equal a deathly illness…even hiccups.
Fun Fact #4 I learned yesterday: Drinking water doesn’t help. But hanging upside down off the side of your bed does! It’ll also lead to a bit of headache, but that’s better than hiccups. You can’t win all the time!
I’m not a hypochrondriac, I swear. I just really hate hiccups and have a bad habit of constantly wanting to self-diagnose myself. I’m a doctor’s worst nightmare. I can’t be the only one that does this…
(This post is in collaboration with Bravo for their show, Around the World in 80 Plates. This week it’s the grand finale and they’re in Uruguay! Check it out on Wednesday at 10pm/9pmc on Bravo!!)
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OMG coffee, I love you.
Raise your hand if you go to sleep dreaming about the next morning’s cup of coffee…
Raise your hand if you’re sort of a snob about coffee (and you don’t care who knows it)…
Raise your hand if you love coffee in baked goods…
If I were you, my hand would’ve been raised for all 3. What if coffee didn’t exist? What a sad thought. I was never one of those kids that didn’t like coffee. Pretty sure I was born loving it. In Latin culture it’s common to give kids a cup of café con leche early on. I think I had mine before the age of 10…and I loved it. I loved it so much that I wasn’t allowed to drink coffee at all until I was about 16. My parents didn’t want to stunt my growth. Turns their efforts were useless since I’m positive that I was destined to be the 5’1″ that I am. SADFACE!
Whatever. What’s awesome now is that I get to drink it all I want. Yay for being an adult!
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I’ve hated eggplant since infancy, I swear, so the fact that you’re seeing little baked/fried matchsticks of eggplant right now is just crazy business. But here we are…just looking at eggplant.
The shift happened a few weeks ago when I went to my favorite vegan restaurant, which I sort of hate. I like/hate this restaurant. I sort of hate it and I sort of love it. This place is like no other restaurant I’ve ever been to. Each dish is an affirmation. Hold the phone, let me explain.
Every dish’s name is an affirmation. A vegan BLT isn’t just a vegan BLT, it’s actually a “I Am Humble.” So, in order for you to place your order you have to look at the server and say, “I would like the ‘I AM GORGEOUS’” and then the server looks at you and says, “YOU are gorgeous.”
This is when I vom. After you’re done ordering they tell you the philosophical question of the day. This is when (internally, of course!) I’m all like, Dude, listen, can you just give me my damn cashew cream, raw cold-ass vegan enchilada thing without talking to me about my inner spirituality and positivity or whatever, because seriously now I AM ANNOYED.
Okay so, why do I go back? Because it’s the best vegan food I’ve ever had. Ever! They served me an eggplant sandwich, which I ordered out of pure curiosity, knowing very well I hated the stuff. I figured if anybody could prepare an inherently gross vegetable in an awesome manner it was them. And I was soooo right.
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