A conversation with Martha Stewart, part 1

This past weekend I was in East Hampton visiting family, and I heard through a PureWow email (I’m obsessed with PW) that Martha Stewart would be making an appearance at Guild Hall -“A Conversation with Martha Stewart”. Who was I to pass up this opportunity with the one and only Martha Stewart? And for $15?! Yeah…

My friend and I snuck in a couple minutes late (don’t get me started on parking) and although we only snagged seats in the back, we could still see her clear as day.

Florence Fabricant, a critic for the NY Times, was casually talking to Martha over a cup of coffee as if 200 eyes weren’t hanging on each tip she gave. I whipped out my phone so I wouldn’t miss any of it, and could share it first hand with all of you. In fact, she gave so much information I didn’t want to overload you with it. The second post on Martha’s holiday tips will be coming out in a couple of weeks. But now, to get you through the last few weeks of summer…

Martha’s seafood tips

  • The best lobster: The best time to buy and cook a lobster is right after they molt (shed their shell). You can tell when the time is right because they are a much brighter red than the rest. This is when the shells are the softest and the meat is the sweetest.
  • Cooking clams: Forget about boiling water, it’s much simpler than that. Get a big skillet and spread the clams in one layer on the bottom. Grind some black pepper over the top of them and cover. Cook on medium heat until they open, anywhere from 5-10 minutes.
  • Want to make some crab meat salad? Peking crab meat is the sweetest, and in her opinion, the best.
  • Her favorite pasta dish to make includes bottarga (salted fish ro from mullet or tuna). Buy the bottarga pressed so you can shave it over the pasta noodle of your choice. For the sauce, combine breadcrumbs, parsley, chopped onions, and capers.

On Martha:

  • Her favorite kind food is Japanese.  (Fun fact: Although it may seem simple to prep, the ingredients take years to cure. Seafood for instance can take up to 24 months to dry.) If you’re ever in the NYC area, her favorite sushi restaurants are Sushi Nakazawa and Ichimura.
  • Her favorite dish, however, is her mother’s perogies.
  • On health: sadly her sister recently passed away from a brain aneurysm. Martha was adamant about taking care of yourself, no matter how hectic your schedule. “Exercise everyday, get regular doctor check ups, and drink green juice.”

I always admired Martha Stewart because she was “Martha Stewart!”. However during this conversation, you could see she’s more than just the brand. She exudes passion for everything she does; from sustainable farming, family recipes, to living a healthy lifestyle.

Stay tuned for Martha’s holiday tips!

Martha and me

Happy Eating, XO.

For those nights you just really can’t deal

Listen up here, I know this title may be shocking to some of you as this is a blog about recipes, but we all have those moments that we are just too tired or bored with our go-to meals that we need a little help from the outsiders. Below are some suggestions for the times where we can’t be bothered with grocery lists, grocery store lines, and just the whole thinking of how and what to make.

Blue Apron First batter up is, Blue Apron – Their claim to fame is: “A better way to cook. Fresh ingredients, great recipes  delivered weekly to your home”.

PlatedOur second contender (by the way this is in no specific order, definitely not in terms of preference either) is Plated – which is similar to the above in that they want you to: “Cook something extraordinary tonight. Chef-designed recipes & fresh ingredients delivered to your door”.

Fresh 20Last is this little gem that I referenced in my weeknight dinner recipe. It somehow got buried in the rambling of my blog post, Fresh 20 – means shopping for 20 Ingredients in 20 Minutes to prep the entire week’s meals. It takes an hour at the start of your week to save you valuable time during busy weeknights.

I don’t want to hear any of you ever sigh and say “I just can’t”. Good food doesn’t have to be a pain in the butt. Get your A game on and check out one of these sites to help you eat well with minimal effort.

Happy Eating, XO.

Flies and Swims

Doctors say in order to keep your cholesterol in check, one should maintain a diet of proteins that either fly or swim. That means no red meat (get it: cows graze whereas fish swims, turkey flies). This is a healthier way of living and will still get you the nutrients of non-vegetarian food (aka the good protein intake). Since I have already shared a salmon recipe, I figured a nice tilapia is just what I needed. This will help to keep us all in our trim, spring break mind set, while still enjoying what we eat. No thanks on the tofu, even if it is deep fried (that’s right Chinese take out, I am talking to you. Don’t act like we don’t all see it there stuffed under our lo mein. No, not that any of us are eating lo mein. Healthy eating…must stay on topic…on diet…flies and swims).

  • 1.5 tsp. Lemon Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1.5 tsp. garlic (granulated)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 tsp. dried dill (if you don’t like dill, dried basil could work)
  • 1.5 tsp. minced onion (I did the bottle stuff on this as well)
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil (I feel like 2 is enough, but eye ball it)
  • 6 Tilapia Fillets
  • 2.5 Tablespoons lime juice (real stuff if you can)

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Preheat oven to 400 degrees F In the meantime, combine the dry spices with olive oil and create a paste. Set aside. Foil the baking sheet and lay out tilapia fillets. Coat the fish with the lime juice and paste. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the tops look golden brown. Enjoy! (oh and, think “swims” next time you need a dinner idea. Swims = swimsuit, eat healthy, eat more fish. Preaching over, the end).

Happy Eating, XO.

4 ingredient fix

Let’s get back to the basics here. Summer is just 90 days away, we need to start eating right. I don’t know what this Paleo stuff is, I mean I have a vague idea…Its a throwback meal plan in which you eat twigs & berries? FALSE. Its actually a legit lifestyle change and although I may have bought a box of green tea and convinced myself I will make it to the gym at least 2x this week. Let’s be real. Unless it tastes good, I am not going to be sticking to it. Oh and it can’t waste a ton of my precious time either so ya, there’s those stipulations as well 🙂 Anyway, I found the best fit. Quick enough for my whiney tired self to use no excuse not to make (double negative folks, stay with me), as well as, the fact it uses trendy stuff like kale and is gluten free (Shout out to a miss Caitlin Matt, lovely GF blog follower). Tell me you don’t love the fact its 4 ingredients and takes 20 minutes to make. Stop with the excuses & try this puppy out…

  • 1 pound sausage (I did Turkey vs. Pork and I also made sure it was hot Italian so the fennel seeds & other spices were already in there).
  • 1 bunch organic kale (1/2 the bag)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
  • (I added a lil bit of minced garlic. Technically not needed since the sausage was mixed with spices, but I like to jazz stuff up).

Remove sausage from its casing and brown in a large pan. Add the diced onion and continue cooking on medium until the onions are soft. Remove the spine from the kale and chop into bite size pieces. (In order to avoid this work, because god forbid I don’t take short cuts, I bought the pre chopped & washed stuff from Trader Joe’s, its in the salad section). Then, add the kale to the pan with the sausage and onions and stir and cook until it turns bright green and softens to your taste. (Between 5-10 minutes) Remove sausage and kale mixture from the heat, stir in the chopped red bell pepper. Serve warm & feel proud of the fact you are so chic that you are eating kale, are gluten free, and partaking in a Paleo diet. Every single food buzz word for 2014, way to be a grade A trendsetter for the day.

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Happy Eating, XO.

Crab Mushroom Caps

I can’t even begin to tell you how much fun I am having researching Super bowl snack ideas. I wanted to be different, fancy, yet still healthy. I’d rather waste my caloric intake on beers vs. food for a change. I have a pot luck party to go to so why not show off a little instead of bringing the blasé, typical healthy option of veggies and dip?! This recipe is just as good for you, I mean 5 mushrooms are only 79 calories!!! AND as if you needed more convincing, it takes 10 whole minutes to throw together. How much more fab can these get? Comment below on your thoughts, twists, ideas.
  • 20 large white button or cremini mushrooms with the stems pulled out
  • 3 oz. lump crab meat (I upped it to 4 oz. because I ADORE crab).
  • 1 stick low-fat string cheese (shred through the garlic press)
  • 1/4 cup plain chobani yogurt (I used 0% fat)
  • 2 tbsp. cream cheese (you can use low-fat or fat-free but I refuse to)
  • 2 cloves of fresh minced garlic
  • pinch of black pepper
  • 1 tsp. of tony cacere’s (no salt since the seasoning already has salt).
  • pinch of dried parsley flakes (again I love the freshness a little green adds to a dish).
Mix all ingredients well and pop off the stems to the mushrooms. Fill caps and bake at 375 degrees for 15-20 min or until tops are crisped brown.
Happy Eating, XO.