Spinach Quiche: Made the easy way

Quiche, a simple egg dish that can be eaten any time of the day.

I have known about Quiche for a while, but never built up the nerves to make one.  A co-worker would rave about the delicious Quiche she’d just had and I would think, “I should make one?”

My fiancée and I are on a home-made meal kick plan (way too much eating out over the past 4 years) and Quiche was one of the first new dishes we made together.  As if it was a special occasion, we watched our newly made dish through the oven door, making sure it didn’t burn.

Call us overprotective, but destroying this way too easy to make dish would have made us run back to our favorite New York City restaurants.

Much to our surprise, it came out PERFECT!

Please see this easy to make Quiche recipe below.

  • 6 medium eggs
  • Trader Joe’s Pie crust
  • Trader Joe’s Spinach (6 ounce bag)
  • Greek yogurt
  • Seasoning
  • Leek
  • Blended shredded cheese
  • minced garlic
  • Cherry tomatoes (halved)
  • 9 inch round pie pan

Whisk eggs, 2 tbsp. Greek yogurt and seasoning of your choice in a bowl.  Egg mixture should be creamy once mixed thoroughly.

Next sauté half of the chopped spinach, 1 cup diced leek, and 1 Tbsp of minced garlic in olive oil. Once cooked add it to the egg mixture and mix.

Lastly, line pan with pie crust, layer chopped spinach, cheese, and some tomatoes on bottom. Next, pour in egg mixture and add remaining tomatoes and more cheese. Place in oven on 375° and cook for 45 minutes to an hour. Egg should be completely cooked and not runny.

Serve while hot with your favorite drink. Hope you enjoy the dish.

 

 

 

Creamy Zucchini Pasta & Spinach

Since starting this “cook at home journey,” again, I’ve tried many dishes that I hadn’t in the past.

My “go to” home meals usually consisted of fish tacos, lasagna, and baked chicken with an easy to make side. Nonetheless, I still hold those dishes dear to my heart, but I’m adding more to my plate.

Now that I have broadened my culinary skills by switching out regular pasta for vegetables, dishes have been unstoppable and fun.

I purchased my first handheld vegetable spiral slicer (Kitchen Active Spiral Slicer $9.97 Amazon) months ago and it has changed the way vegetables are consumed in my household.

It is by far one of the best kitchen utensils I have invested in. Nothing beats coming home, shredding some vegetables – the easy way – and having a fresh salad or hot pasta dish ready in a jiff.

In time I will start preparing my favorite meals again, but for now I’m spending time learning to love new ones.

Please check out recipe below.

Vegetables:

  • Zucchini (3)
  • Spinach (4 cups chopped)
  • Asparagus (frozen 7.5 oz chopped)
  • Grape tomatoes (1 cup halved)
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • Olive oil

Cream sauce:

  • Cheese blend (shredded )
  • Campbell’s Cream of Celery (10.5 oz can)
  • 1 cup of Almond milk
  • Seasoning  (any desired; I chose to add cayenne pepper for a kick)

Start by preparing the veggies for the dish. Always wash before cooking. Spiral Zucchini – be sure to cut ends and use either end of spiralizer for desired thickness. Zucchini will come out in long strands so cut the strands into three’s and set aside. Next chop Spinach and mix with minced garlic in bowl. Lastly, halve grape tomatoes and chop asparagus.

Any of the vegetables can be seasoned during cooking or you can opt to season only the cream sauce.

Add olive oil to pan then add Zucchini once hot. Cook at least 5 minutes while tossing. Water will be cooked out of Zucchini and it should be firm and crisp once done. Remove from pan, discard water and put back in bowl. Next add a few more drops of olive oil and add spinach and minced garlic mix to pan, cook about 5 minutes. Put in bowl.

Lastly add a few more drops of olive oil to pan (to keep it coated so veggies don’t stick) add asparagus and grape tomates. Cover and cook about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes.

In pot add Cream of celerey, milk, cheese blend and seasoning. Bring to a boil while stirring. Reduce heat to a simmer once the cheese has melted. Add as much cheese or milk as you like, for desired cheesiness and creaminess; I’m sure I added about 3 cups of cheese.

Lastly transfer all vegetables to pot and stir while mixture is still simmering. Cover for about 5 minutes and remove from heat.

Serve while hot. Hope you enjoy the dish!

Starchy, chunky, creamy goodness: Potato Soup

So, it’s Fall and the nippy weather makes me want to curl up in a fuzzy throw and eat heavy, creamy foods (doesn’t matter if the food is hot or cold).
I tried this new creamy potato soup recipe for the first time – courtesy of divascancook.com – however I made some adjustments to suit my cooking style and taste. Keep in mind seasoning is an important factor with this soup, so don’t be afraid to add your favorite seasonings.

I enjoy potatoes in every form, and this soup made my mid-week lunch break very pleasant.  Although potatoes are considered heavy, this particular dish did not make me want to crawl under my desk and sleep.

This will be my go to dish from now on when I want something starchy, chunky and creamy.   Add a few crackers on the side and you have a hearty meal.

Instead of cooking this dish on the stove top or in a microwave, I opted to use my handy-dandy Crockpot. One of the best investments I’ve made.  This extended the cooking time from 30 minutes to 4.5 hours, including prep time.

I know 4.5hrs seems like a long time, but this meal was not for dinner that night, so I cooked it when I got home from work to eat the rest of the week.  By peeling and dicing the potatoes and vegetables the night before, I saved some time the next day with prep work.  If you don’t have that much time to cook, you can always make it on the stove or in the microwave.

See recipe adjustments below, for using a Crockpot:

Ingredients:

  • Used about 15 small potatoes (diced)
  • Turkey bacon (cooked on George Forman until crispy & broken into pieces)
  • 2tbsp minced garlic (sautéed)
  • 32oz Vegetable stock (low/no sodium)
  • 1 can cream of asparagus & 2tbsp Greek yogurt
  • Omitted liquid smoke
  • Green, yellow & red peppers (diced & sautéed)
  • Stick of celery (diced & sautéed)

Cooking instructions:

  • Add potatoes, seasoning and veg broth to Crockpot (stir & cook until soft or after 2.5hrs)
  • Add turkey bacon & vegetable mix (around the 3hr mark, not to let veg get too limp)
  • Scoop & mash half of the potatoes and add back to Crockpot (doesn’t matter if you bring veg/bacon with, just try not to mash too much of the extra ingredients)
    • I found this released more of the flavors
  • Add cream of asparagus/Greek yogurt (30min left, stir and reduce heat to low until 4hrs are up)
  • Add shredded cheese & bacon (if any is left) for garnishment

Hope you enjoy this creamy fall/winter treat!

 

 

Smorgasburg Gets a New Home in Sunset Park’s Industry City

NYCitybeat

Smorgasburg @ Sunset Park's Industry City: Solber Pupusas Red Hook NYC Smorgasburg @ Sunset Park’s Industry City: Solber Pupusas Red Hook NYC

Fall is upon us and eating outside in the cold can sometimes be a drag.  Winter Flea +Smorgasburg has moved its outdoor market indoors to make it more comfortable to shop and eat.

Sunset Park’s Industry City has been named the new home to 100+ local vendors for those brave enough to weather the cold.  The entrance will be at 241 37th Street – starting October 17, 2015 till March 2016, 10a.m.-6p.m. – those there to try new foods as well as shop will peruse the 50,000 square foot indoor venue without the frostbite.

This food lovers haven was launched in 2011 as a spin-off of the Brooklyn Flea market, founded by Jonathan Butler and Eric Demby in 2008.  The extensive line-up of food vendors will cater to thousands every weekend for the next six months.

The à…

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NYC Welcomes Chick-fil-A: Where Apple meets Chicken

Chick-fil-A will open its first ever free standing restaurant on October 3rd, 2015 at 37th Street and 6th Avenue in Midtown, Manhattan.

Founder, Truett Cathy, opened his first restaurant in Hapeville, Georgia in 1946 known at the time as Dwarf Grill. It wasn’t until years later he established Chick-fil-A, Inc. and opened the first restaurant of the same name in Atlanta in 1967.

The popular, ultra religious, southern fast food chain has expanded to over 42 states and Washington, DC. The Midtown location will be the first free standing Chick-fil-A in Manhattan – placed in an area with high traffic and those looking for something a little different to eat. What does that mean for the people of New York City? The chain will render its famous boneless fried chicken breast enclosed in a buttery bun that has been a staple since the beginning.

Chick-fil-A has been serving a select few of New Yorkers its famous sandwich for years at its NYU location in Greenwich Village, but given that it is part of the campus, most outsiders did not know it existed. Now the bright red chicken icon will not be missed by many New Yorker’s who frequent Herald Square.

Although the food maybe new to some, there maybe others who remembers the controversy surrounding the food chain. In 2012, CEO Dan Cathy, son of founder, made a statement in regards to same-sex marriages. Cathy’s comments “condemning same-sex marriages set off store picketing and social media firestorm,” according to USA Today. Cathy has since tried to remove himself and the company from any political matters and he states, “Chick-fil-A has no place in the culture wars and regrets making the company a symbol in the marriage debate,” according to an article in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

However, Cathy’s statement did not cause a negative impact with sales from 2012 to 2014. QSR Web reported that in 2012 the restaurants annual sale was over $4 billion and Chick-fil-A.com reported System-wide sales in 2014 reached nearly $6 billion.

In a city this diverse, Chick-fil-A must be prepared for all types of people and personalities. Oscar Fittipaldi, a Navy veteran who has traveled the world, had dreams of getting to New York City and owning his own business, according to New York Eatery online. He is the owner and operator of NYC’s first free standing Chick-fil-A.

New Yorker’s are relatively accustomed to transplants from other states and cities, but given the religious background accompanied with the “southern hospitality” the restaurant was founded on, it will be interesting to see how New Yorker’s embrace the fast food restaurant.

Brooklyn Pride 2015: Through a child’s eyes

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Brooklyn Pride 2015

Brooklyn held its annual LGBTQ+ Family Pride Parade on Saturday, June 13th.  Amongst its spectators – a little girl – who was an inspiration to all.

Using the pavement as her very own chalkboard, she wrote genuine encouragements. Those walking in the parade, as well as watching; viewed the brightly colored messages that read, “Good for you & good step.”

As I snapped a few photos of the young artist in the making, her mother stood by smiling. It gave me joy to witness the child fully embrace the world around her – no matter the differences.

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“Good step”
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“Good for you”

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The parade went well past sundown and was worth every minute. New York City mayor, Bill de Blasio and wife, joined supporters as they walked down 5th Avenue.  Brooklyn Men (K)onnect and The New York City Council also joined the many groups in support.

There was no shortage of parade floats, banners, and brightly colored outfits to keep the crowd enthralled.  A giant PFLAG (Parents Flag) made its way down the street with many hands on deck to carry it.

This year marked the 19th year for Brooklyn.  The events calender for 2016 is scheduled to be released by the end of 2015.  Timeout magazine provides online and print versions of all things to do in New York from month-to-month.  Nevermind the season, there’s always something happening.

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           PFLAG
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Brooklyn Pride 2015
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Mayor of New York City Bill de Blasio
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Brooklyn Pride 2015
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The New York City Council
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Brooklyn Men (K)onnect

Heel to Toe at Brooklyn’s local bar

Ankle boot & converse at the same bar.
Same bar, different style.

Bar life in New York City is filled with an array of people, usually clusters of friends; but it also has something else…shoes!

This is one of the world’s most fashion forward cities; so it is not unexpected to find shoes of all kinds high-stepping it in the up and coming neighborhoods of Brooklyn.

Of course this is no surprise, but the difference in footwear is.  The party vibe and background noise is typical of a bar – always packed with people looking to have a good time while sipping on reasonably priced drinks.

Patrons have also added to the make-up by showing off their sense of style in cool kicks.

Looking for a bar to satisfy the craving for cold drinks and hot food in Brooklyn?  Look no further.  Crown Heights is serving all that and then some.

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Metallic time.

I decided to satisfy my curiosity by zooming in on some of the different faces of women’s shoes at Franklin Park.

Not only does this old garage – converted into an eatery and bar – offer some of the best burgers and tap in Crown Heights, the variety of shoes show just how much they are a part of the aesthetics.

Forget the sneakers and comfy flats to hangout with friends in bars, it’s about standing while making a statement.

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Just wedge it.

“America’s Tabloid Joins the Video Revolution”

indexFrank Posillico, video editor at The New York Daily News, has worked his way up in the business and continues to do so.

Posillico, one of the youngest members of The New York Daily News and SUNY at Stony Brook graduate, has managed to use his skills from his time at Stony Brook as Editor-in-Chief to pave to the way into his recent position.

The New York Daily News is one of the top leading papers in New York City that has included video to its online site.  This includes everything from “outrageous shoes” to “how to lock your bike properly”.  Running one after the other, the videos give the site more of an interactive feel.  Since so many are on the go and the clips are short, this is the best way to spend time riding the bus or train.

Posillico lends a wise word to the young, he not being much older himself, says, “I made my own job. Push for what you want.”  With video becoming a central part of today’s online sites, this young man is ahead of the curve.  He is not certain if print will completely fall-off, but he does not mind if it does.

“Endless Winter”

indexIt was as if winter did not want to let go.

The short days and below freezing temperatures are not the best times during winter. Although it brings beautiful snow, before the dirt gets to it, and clear skies at times;  winter is like that distant relative that shows up when you’re not ready.

This winter was the most brutal; pipes bursting, slippery black ice and frost bitten hands. “This is nothing,”  exclaims native New Yorkers.  I listen to stories about “how it was always this cold in my time” and comments such as “you’ll get used to it.”

I don’t think I will ever get used to this type of cold. Bone-chilling, breath snatching cold. My first winter was not as bad, this being my third winter, it has gotten worse. I enjoy a good clear sky with the sun beaming down, but if that means I must rush to get to where I’m going, I can do without.

I don’t want to speak I’ll of winter, but sometimes it is persistent on making the layers of clothing increase. No, I don’t want to speak I’ll of winter, but winter does not seem to know when to let go.

When spring finally came around, I rejoiced like many others tired of winters firm grip. Birds sing a more upbeat tune and squirrels play as they did before the breeze turned into a cold chill.

Winter came through and made a mark on everyone and everything it touched. Let us remember that winter is always around the corner and soon enough it will come back like a dear friend none of us wants.