The Heart of Winter

February 15, 2013

Last weekend we saw our first significant snowfall in awhile. There’s nothing quite like waking up on a Saturday morning and venturing through the neighborhood as the sledders, skiers and snowshoers come out and transform Central Park into a great outdoor adventure. Feeling a bit lazy by the afternoon, I pulled together a meal for the apartment to enjoy thanks to Zabars. It included a couple pastas to warm us up– pesto and three cheese with mushrooms, our favorite rosemary bread with sun-dried tomato tofu spread and a side of asparagus.

Sun-dried tomato tofu spread

Sun-dried tomato tofu spread

Pesto pasta and asparagus

Pesto pasta and asparagus

Rosemary Bread

Rosemary Bread

Three cheese and mushroom pasta

Three cheese and mushroom pasta

 

Pesto pasta

Pesto pasta

Upper West Side

Upper West Side

Rosemary bread with sun-dried tomato tofu spread

Rosemary bread with sun-dried tomato tofu spread

 

 


 


 

 

Aperitivo in Milano

August 8, 2012

Americans traditionally think of happy hour as a time to enjoy discounted drinks once the workday is over. Italians however, have an entirely different (and far better) concept for these pre-dinner, post-work hours. I was first introduced to aperitivo, or drinks with complimentary food, in Milan a couple years back when visiting my friends. I imagined bowls of chips, pretzels and popcorn. I should have known better that this would be a disgrace to the Italian culture, and rather we would feast upon an open buffet of various pastas, meats, cheeses and vegetables. Fast forward to 2012, and I found myself once again in Milan, enjoying an evening with friends at Luca e Andrea Cafe on the Naviglio Grande. Although meant for just a warm-up to dinner, their macaroni and cheese and pasta salad left me far too full for anything else.

Cocktails on the canal

Pasta, couscous, chicken and vegetables 

Navigli

Pasta

Macaroni and cheese

 

 

Pasta & Shrimp

May 15, 2012

Pasta dishes are always great solutions for dinner parties, they’re quick and easy to throw together for a crowd-satisfying meal.  Last time I was in Syracuse we served up this fettucini dish with shrimp scampi, eggplant, portobello mushrooms and a garlic butter sauce. Another fun dish I photographed was this side of rice and broccoli.

Fettucini and shrimp scampi 

Pasta and portobello mushrooms

Rice and broccoli  

Pasta and cheese bread

Ingredients 

Sunday Sauce

March 23, 2012

One of my favorite days of the week are Sundays. Nothing beats a morning browsing the farmers market and and an afternoon cooking with friends or family before yet another work-filled week begins. After hearing such great things about D.C.’s Eastern Market, it was on my list of places to check out. Comparable to New York’s Brooklyn Flea, but with a great indoor food market as well, we explored the cute streets of Capitol Hill, shopped and stocked up on fresh food to make homemade sauce for dinner. I couldn’t have asked for better hosts, as they prepared a delicious salad, sauce and pasta all the while I had fun shooting and using their fantastic Anthropologie-inspired kitchenware. Happy Friday and don’t forget to explore your own local farmers market this weekend! x

Foccacia and fresh basil

Salad with dried cranberries, blue cheese and nuts and garlic

Eastern Market

Fresh basil and a Capitol Hill garden

Eastern Market mushrooms

Cooking up the sauce

Taste test on toasted foccacia and garlic chive cheese

Eastern Market asparagus

Short ribs and pasta

Grapes for dessert

Sunday Family Dinner

February 29, 2012

This weekend I was back in Syracuse spending time with the family. Sunday was the perfect winter day with crisp blue skies, a few inches of freshly fallen snow, a fire in the fireplace and the aroma of my father’s Northern Italian dish for dinner filling the house. We started with a couple fresh loaves of Columbus Bakery bread, followed by an antipasto platter with lettuce, tomato, greek olives, cucumbers, salami, ham, provolone, blue cheese and topped with a white balsamic vinaigrette. The main dish was homemade marinara sauce with tomatoes, chicken stock, fresh garlic, onions, zucchini and a touch of sugar. After simmering for a few hours with the chicken breast and thigh meat, it was poured over fettucini and garnished with parsley and parmesan cheese.

Marinara sauce with chicken and fettucini

 

Antipasto platter

 

Columbus Bakery bread dipped in olive oil

 

Grating parmesan cheese and Columbus Bakery bread

 

Antipasto platter

 

Bread and Pasta

 

White balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing

 

Pasta and bread

 

Antipasto

A Dish for Grandma

February 3, 2012

I’ve spent the past few weeks Upstate with my grandmother during her final days, and with my family once she passed away. Now that I’m back to work, I’m looking forward to getting my food shoots up and running again. I couldn’t think of a better way to kick off my return than with a tribute to the amazing woman she was. One of her favorite meals was pasta and meatballs, an Italian classic that happens to be one of my favorites as well. I had so much fun pairing the vibrant red sauce with some old B&Ws of my grandmother and her sisters on their 4th of July holiday in the city circa 1941.

My Aunt Nici and Grandma sightseeing in NY

 

Aunt Flory, Aunt Nici and Grandma getting off the subway

 

Grandma, Aunt Nici, Aunt Flory in the park

 

Aunt Nici, Grandma and Aunt Flory strolling down Broadway

Bringing in the New Year

January 4, 2012

I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the start of 2012 than with great food, friends and skiing. I’ve been pretty bummed because a photographer’s worst nightmare came true when my card with all of the Christmas holiday food shoots was damaged, and even after attempting recovery at New York’s top repair services, there was no such luck. But that just gives me an excuse to revisit some of the locations, like Elderberry Pond Restaurant, to enjoy yet another great meal. Well, enough of the disappointments, it’s time I look forward in the New Year and share with you some amazing meals from this past weekend spent at Killington. We were lucky enough to have a friend/personal chef join us for the 3 days and prepare all the meals– I should add for 16 people– with more enthusiasm than anyone I’ve seen. Here’s the menu we had, and check out the highlights below:

Taco Night–Pulled Chipotle Chix, Ground beef , Soft and hard shells, Assorted toppings, Black beans, Rice and Corn

Steak and Scrimps’ Night–Filet wrapped in applewood smoked bacon, Grilled Ribeye with fried onion strings, Marinated grilled scrimps’, Roasted Garlic Parm potatoes, Broccoli, Dilaurios butter rolls

Sunday Pasta–Pastabilities spicy tomato oil for dipping, Antipasto platter w/ assorted cheeses including  5 year Pecorino, Caesar Salad, Zia Natalina’s San Marzano Tomato sauce w/ assorted pig parts over pasta, Meatballs, Greens with ham hocks and Pizza frite

That NYE staple known as Champagne

Filet wrapped in applewood smoked bacon

Sunday's pre-pasta meat and cheese plate

Lobster Bisque

Lobster Bisque

Baklavah

Killington

A skier's breakfast

Bacon, Egg & Cheese sandwiches

Berries & Yogurt

Homemade croutons

Pasta & Cheese

Loster Bisque

Shrimp & Broccoli


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