Sponsored Post: The Burnt Truck’s Fried Mozzarella Slider with Basil Aioli

Man, are you in for a treat. Are you ready? Imagine a slice of fresh, milky mozzarella that’s been coated in panko bread crumbs and fried. That sounds pretty good by itself, doesn’t it? Now imagine that on an eggy roll (Hawaiian sweet bread) and topped with both basil aioli and a spicy tomato jam. It’s hard to even wrap your head around, but I know it’s a real thing that exists because I ate it at the Burnt Truck at the Orange County Fair and ever since it’s been haunting my dreams. Making this at home wouldn’t just be an act of selfishness (I NEED TO HAVE MORE), but an act of charity because if I figure out this recipe that means you get to eat it too and you’ll be just as happy and haunted as I am.

Continue Reading

Clams with White Wine, Sweet Corn, and Basil

IMG_4736

If you were to do a graph–and I’m not a graph person, so you’d have to help me out here–measuring the effort you put into a dinner vs. the pleasure you get from eating it, chances are there’d be a real corollary between the work put it in and the pleasure received (see, for example, lamb merguez with eggplant jam). Every so often, though, there’s an outlier: a recipe that’s so incredibly easy, so simple to put together, it doesn’t make sense that the results should taste as good as they do, but they do. And I’d wager that of all the recipes that fit into this tiny category, the ones at the very apex of “easy to do” and “good to eat” are recipes involving mussels and clams.

Continue Reading

Eggs in Tomato Sauce with Sausage and Basil

IMG_2158

As you probably know, by now, I’m a pasta-loving fool. My blog has 78 recipes for pasta and risotto in its archives, so you know I take my pasta-eating seriously.

Sadly, my pasta love is now at odds with my spring-time desire to get in shape. I’ve been sticking to my gym routine for two months now, and though I still eat pasta and pastries and all the other naughty P foods on weekends, I’m trying to focus on a healthier P-word during the week: protein. The challenge I made for myself was this: transform the kind of sauce you’d love to eat over pasta on a typical weeknight into a protein-rich dinner that’s every bit as satisfying but way better for your beach bod. The secret? Instead of pasta, use eggs.

Continue Reading

I Am Disappointed in This Parsley-Scented Hand Soap

IMG_7005

“Write the things that matter to you most” is what a writing teacher somewhere is telling his or her classroom of students. This is great advice and I am heeding it right now when I tell you: I am disappointed in this parsley-scented soap. I bought it at Bed, Bath & Beyond a month ago and squirreled it away for when we ran out of the lavender-scented hand soap. When that day came, I eagerly threw the lavender into the trash and removed the parsley-scented soap from the cabinet. This would be the moment, the moment I would find out what it’s like to use parsley-scented soap.

Continue Reading

Basil Lime Daiquiri

IMG_3044

The best drink I’ve drunk in recent memory was the basil lime daiquiri I drank at ABC Kitchen, Jean-George’s highly praised farm-to-table restaurant attached to ABC Carpet. The drink positively glowed with its fluorescent green color and intense basil-y aroma. Here, let me show you a picture….

Continue Reading

Pasta alla Norma

IMG_1.JPG

Eggplant is a funny vegetable. It’s not a vegetable that inspires passion, the way that asparagus or ramps do in springtime. It’s not a vegetable that anyone would put on a short list of favorite foods. If the farmer’s market held a prom, I’m pretty certain eggplant would be sitting by itself on a bench, chatting uneasily with a turnip, and waiting—hoping—someone might just ask it to dance.

Well, eggplant, here I am in my tux: waddya say we ménage a trios with some tomato and basil? No, no, silly eggplant, we’re not going to make love—sorry—but we ARE going to make something better: Pasta alla Norma!

Continue Reading