Cobb Burger

Ahh... 78 degrees outside today in the New York/New Jersey area. Came back here to visit my family and was excited to find out that the weather was going to be gorgeous. I automatically planned to turn on the grill.
Buuuurgerrrrr. That's all I wanted off that grill. I am about to toot my own horn; I'm good at burgers and sandwiches - very good actually. I'm also super good with my salads... Super good. That sounds funny, but I'm using it anyway.
So, why not mash the two together? Salad burger... Cobb Burger! Excellent. Originally, I wanted to make a Surf and Turf Burger, but after talking it through with a friend, we decide that it may be a bit too... eclectic for a first burger post. Surf and Turf Burger: coming soon.

Pan Roasted Baby Potatoes

I have been trying to make French Macaroons since last week. It's frustrating. I can't get it right. I'm attempting it again tonight and since I don't want to feel like a total failure, I've made my no-fuss pan roasted baby potatoes. These guys taste great no matter what.

My boyfriend loves potatoes. These are his favorite. He says they taste like home, though I don't believe his mom makes these. She actually asked me for the recipe once at a family gathering. I was so proud of myself. It just feels great when your boyfriend's mother/mother-in-law asks YOU for something. Ladies, you can understand me.

This recipe is excellent for any time, accompanying any dish. I'll make it for barbecues to bring over to friends' places and everyone goes wild for it. I bring it in the cast iron skillet to show off a little bit.

Vegetable Rigatoni with Fresh Buffalo Mozzarella

Spring is here! Or, is it? It snowed yesterday in Toronto. It snowed, but the sun was out at the same time. So strange. You'll see in the inconsistent light in my photos. There were some seriously ominous clouds going by and then, full sun. I hate the weather here. I'm going to celebrate spring anyway!

Better get the pasta in now before Passover. I try not to have any flour other than Matzo during the holiday - I normally last less than 12 hours. The only thing I want the morning after our Seder is a big puffy bagel, and, I DO IT.

I'm actually going to give withholding from flour a legitimate try this year. So, I'll load up on my pastas and breads before tonight. This was dinner last night, and I can't describe how much I enjoyed every single piece of rigatoni.

Pea Soup

There really is nothing like a great soup. You can pull out any veggie from your fridge or freezer and make something warm and comforting.

My mom makes chicken soup at least once a week. I could be miles away and if she knows that I'm sick, she will whip some up and drive it over. Mother's soup heals all.

Cheesy cliche alert! When it's raining, I like to sit by the window, listen to the rain and have some soup. You know you like the idea.

Tomato, Parmesan, and Prosciutto Bruschetta

I do not feel like writing a thing. I am exhaaaausted. And thus, didn't make dinner, just some bruschetta.

I was up all last week and most of the weekend making a cake for my friend Lisa's birthday. Since I don't have the time during the day, I had to work on it after I would get home everyday. The results were amazing:

She was happy (I love making people happy). I also love feeding people cake (Vanilla Bean Cake with Hazelnut Buttercream filling). But enough about cake for now.

I have been craving garlic like crazy. This was a good fix. My secret is to season the crouton generously. It's always a good habit to season each component of any composed dish. Composed, meaning a dish that has separate elements which are served on the same plate. Example: Nicoise Salad.

Make this when you're having company over. Who doesn't like bruschetta? People love bruschetta. No one says "No" to bruschetta. If you haven't been able to tell yet, I heart prosciutto.

Tomato, Parmesan, and Prosciutto Bruschetta
Makes 20-25 servings

2 large beefsteak tomatoes, diced into small cubes

2-3 cloves garlic, minced in a press
1 tsp dried oregano
1 TBSP dijon mustard
1 TBSP balsamic vinegar
2 TBSP, plus additional for croutons, extra-virgin olive oil
1 baguette, cut into 1/2" slices
4 slices prosciutto, pan seared until crispy, then crumble into large pieces
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, shaved or grated
Salt and freshly ground pepper

In a medium sized bowl, mix the tomatoes, garlic, oregano, mustard, balsamic vinegar, and the 2 TBSP of olive oil. Season generously with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cover and let sit in the fridge for at least 25 minutes. The longer it sits, the better the flavor.

Pre-heat broiler to high and position the rack to be in the top third of the oven. On a baking sheet, arrange the slices of baguette in one layer. Brush each slice with olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt and freshly ground pepper. Toast in oven until the edges are golden brown.

Top each slice with the marinated tomatoes, Parmesan, and a piece of prosciutto. Sprinkle with a bit more freshly ground pepper. Serve and devour.