All posts filed under: Rel’s Ravenous Reviews

A Trip to Boston- Edible Arrangements and Mommy’s Dutch Babies

Last weekend I went home to visit my mom because she was sick. Now that I’m back I just wanted to relay some of my delicious foodie experiences. Hey, just because I was playing doctor doesn’t mean that I didn’t eat well. You should all know that by now. Everyone has experienced not feeling well and as a result, a loss of appetite. So what’s to be done? You gotta eat right? The answer to this question, as least for breakfast and snacktime, is my mom’s famous dutch babies. The best way I can describe a dutch baby is an eggy pancake that is sweet, filling, buttery, fluffy, and even more perfect with a side of warm maple syrup. What’s even better is that they are so incredibly simple to make. Mom’s Dutch Babies 6 eggs 1 1/2 cup flour 1 1/2 cup milk 1 stick butter Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Crack your eggs into a bowl and blend them on high. Then add in the milk and flour slowly. Alternate milk, then …

Dabbling in the Kitch – Scallion Pancakes

Scallion pancakes. Fried. Oily. Chewy. Savory. Who doesn’t love them? These simple pancakes are the replacement for dinner rolls at basically every Chinese restaurant. So why not try to make them at home? I came across a recipe on Brown Eyed Baker and decided to give it a shot. I have never made or worked with dough before; I have always thought it was rather intimidating. Since I have had some cooking successes recently, I decided to try it out, especially since there are so few ingredients, it must be hard to mess up!  Scallion Pancakes 2 cups all purpose flour 1 cup boiling water 1 tablespoon sesame oil 1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions Salt and pepper to taste 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided Place the sifted flour in a bowl and slowly stir in the boiling water. Be patient! Don’t dump all the water in at once. When all the water is in the flour, it should start to firm up. To get everything combined, I used my hands to form it together into …

Rel’s Ravenous Review of The Blue Water Grill

This July 4th I went to The Blue Water Grill. I had never been to this restaurant before; for me, it has always been characterized it by its bold red awnings that line 16th street and Union Square West. Although it is surrounded by a multitude of restaurants like Republic, Heartland Brewery and even Toasties, it has a slightly different appeal because it’s main attraction is of course, the seafood and raw bar. The atmosphere is also more upscale with its white tablecloths and well dressed patrons who seem to be tourists, looking for a quiet break from the New York masses, as opposed to Union Square locals. The outdoor seating at Blue Water Grill is probably its greatest asset. Sitting outside will land you in prime “people watching” position, but far enough away that you avoid the loud chatter of the busy farmer’s market. The restaurant has a special brunch menu which offers breakfast and lunch specials from 10:30 am to 4 pm on Sundays. We made the window and were impressed to see …

Cleaning out the Pantry- Toasted Almond and Sun-dried Tomato Pesto

Hey everyone! It’s a new month so I decided that this blog should be dedicated to cleaning out that fridge and pantry and getting rid of all those foods that…need to be tossed. It’s so great to buy fresh produce but what happens when you just can’t get to all of it?  Yesterday, while I was cleaning out the fridge, I found some fresh parsley that I just didn’t want to toss. It would probably only last a few more days so I decided to make a pesto with it in my new food processor! Again, thanks Mom! I really love the traditional pesto with some basil, garlic, olive oil and toasted pine nuts. The original meaning of “pesto” is to pound or to crush, referring to the crushing and blending of the garlic and herbs. So why not try a pesto with some other ingredients? I tossed in the parsley to the food processor. I also knew that I wanted to add a toasty crunch to my pesto. I had a few almonds leftover …

Dabbling in the Kitch – Zucchini Vichyssoise

First of all I would like to give a very big thank you to my MOM! The other day I got a package in the mail. It was a gigantic box and I wondered what it could possibly be. I opened it..and it was a Cuisinart FOOD PROCESSOR!! No more chunky edamame hummus.   Thanks Mom!  Today was the first day that I got to experiment with my new present. I decided that soup would be a great thing to try. Also, Whitney is sick so soup would be a good throat soother. Feel better Whit!  I decided to try Ina’s Zucchini Vichyssoise soup. Vichy-what? Vichyssoise is a type of French soup that is actually served cold. To be honest, I have only eaten this soup warm since it hasn’t had enough time in the fridge to chill and it is just delicious. I think though that it would be a very refreshing chilled soup. When I usually think of summer soups, my mind goes straight to gazpacho. I love gazpacho but sometimes I just …

Dabbling in the Kitch – Ariel’s Delightful Mac and Cheese

What can be more comforting than something that is warm, filling and cheesy? Today I’m blogging about my first attempt at baked macaroni and cheese. Despite appreciating truly good and fresh food, I happen to enjoy the stuff that comes out of the blue box. But in hopes of finding a cheesy mac that is less hydrogenated and more gastronomically correct, I turned to my favorite Food Network chef, Ina Garten.  Ina’s Baked Macaroni and Cheese Kosher Salt Vegetable Oil 1 pound elbows 1 stick butter 1 quart milk  1/2 cup all purpose flour 4 cups gruyere 2 cups cheddar 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg 4 small tomatoes 1 1/2 cups fresh white breadcrumbs Important note #1:  I really trust Ina on what kind of cheeses to use. She really knows her stuff. Unfortunately, according to her gorgeous house in the Hamptons, it seems that her cheese budget is a bit higher than mine. Because of this, I decided just to use 6 cups of cheddar because the gruyere at …

Rel’s Ravenous Review of Mixmygranola.com

The other day Whitney suggested I go to the Mixmygranola website. I LOVE granola.  It’s crunchy, chewy, filling and a great substitute for that donut, poptart or toaster strudel you’re eating right now. This website is the mecca of granola. You can have whatever you want!  Go online and start by choosing from pre-mixes; organic granola, low-fat granola, french vanilla flavor or muesli. Then choose as many ingredients as you want- all from about 50 cents to two dollars. First you choose your fruits. From dried strawberries to goji berries, you can truly get whatever your granola loving heart desires. Have some raisins or apricots or even some dried papaya. The next step is to choose seeds and nuts. I was surprised at the selection here. I never realized that hazelnuts or chia seeds could be added to granola! You’re not done yet! Next you go to the “extras” section. Here you can add all of those yummy bits that will make your granola sweet and taste a little more like candy. Have some pomegranate …

Dabbling in the Kitch – Israeli Fatoush Salad

Since I left Israel, I have really been missing all of those delicious, refreshing salads. Unlike the US where we tend to forget about salads and go with a side of fries, in Israel, a side of tomatoes, cucumbers, onions and lemon juice goes with all meals: breakfast, lunch AND dinner. While in Golan, I bought an Israeli cookbook called “The Book of New Israeli Food: a culinary journey” by Janna Gur. It is a comprehensive bible of Israeli cooking techniques and culinary history. I have already learned so much, and I am only on the salad section.  What I’d like to share with you today is the Fatoush Salad. This is a light and delicious garden of veggies. It is also incredibly healthy as there is no real dressing. Trade in that ranch for some lemon juice and two tablespoons of olive oil. I think you might live ten extra years!  Fatoush Salad 3 firm, ripe tomatoes, cut into small chunks 3 cucumbers, cut into small chunks 1 onion, chopped 1 large radish (optional) …

Dabbling in the Kitch – Asian Sesame Noodles

You may all have noticed by now that I’m obsessed with Asian food and attempting to make it. The other night, after too many hours of looking on tastespotting, I had a hankering to cook. For those of you who have been on that site, you will know the feeling. For those of you who haven’t, check it out and you’ll understand. Whitney and I ventured to the grocery and came back with bags of ingredients. She made her delicious butterfinger bars and I made some Asian sesame noodles. I have always been a fan of these sorts of noodles because they’re sweet, filling and are great cold as leftovers. And trust me, unless you’re Andre the giant, you’ll have leftovers with this recipe.  Ariel’s Asian Sesame Noodles: 1 box of Barilla Plus spaghetti noodles, cooked al dente 1/2 cup of soy sauce 1/4 cup of sesame oil 1/3 cup of sugar 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar 2 tablespoons of honey 4 scallion, thinly sliced 2 cloves of garlic, minced 1/4 cup of toasted …

Easier Than Pie: Early Mornin’ Spit in the Eye

This morning I woke up hungry. During the school year, I usually grab a luna bar or toast up a quick bagel. But today I wanted something special. Whitney and I have decided that having a more substantial breakfast with help us jump-start our day.  I went to my local grocery and picked up some eggs and some honey-cracked whole wheat toast. My Papa made what he called a “Spit in the Eye” for me once and I thought I’d give it a try. A Spit in the Eye is simply a fried egg nested in a piece of toast all made together in a skillet. Easy enough right? I started by taking my piece of toast and cutting out a circle in the middle for my egg. I actually used the rim of a cup to cut out the circle but you could just use a knife or even a cookie cutter. That way you could make any cute shape that you want to. Put your stove on medium heat and begin by toasting …