Spicy Black-Bean Soup

IMG_6173.jpg

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 medium white onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 fresh jalapeño (2 inches), seeded and minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 (19-ounces) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 Turkish or 1/2 California bay leaf
  • Accompaniments: chopped cilantro; lime wedges; chopped white onion

    1. Heat oil in a 4-to 5-quart heavy pot over medium-high heat until it shimmers, then sauté onion, garlic, and jalapeño with chili powder, cumin, oregano, and 1/2 teaspoon salt until onion is beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Add beans, water, and bay leaf and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until soup has thickened slightly, about 15 minutes.
    2. Transfer about 2 cups soup to a blender and purée (use caution when blending hot liquids). Return to pot and reheat over medium-low heat, stirring frequently. Discard bay leaf. Season with salt.

Poblano Cream Soup

IMG_5921.jpg

* – from Gourmet Magazine

INGREDIENTS

    • 1 1/2 pounds fresh poblano chiles (8 large)
    • 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
    • 1 whole clove or 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
    • 4 whole allspice or 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
    • 1/4 cup mild olive oil
    • 1 medium white onion, chopped (1 cup)
    • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
    • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
    • 3 to 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
    • 1 cup heavy cream

PREPARATION

  1. Roast chiles:
    1. Roast chiles on their sides on racks of gas burners, 1 or 2 per burner, on medium-high (or on rack of a broiler pan about 2 inches from heat), turning with tongs, until skins are blackened all over, 4 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl, then cover and let stand 20 minutes. Peel chiles, then stem, seed, devein, and coarsely chop.
  2. Make soup:
    1. Heat spices in oil in a large heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring, until fragrant and oil begins to simmer, 1 to 2 minutes. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add roasted chiles and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and cook, stirring, 1 minute.
    2. Purée chile mixture with cilantro and 3 cups broth (total) in 2 or 3 batches in a blender until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids), about 2 minutes per batch.
    3. Return mixture to cleaned saucepan and add cream. Bring to a simmer, adding more broth to thin if necessary, and season with salt.

IMG_5914

IMG_5917

IMG_5919

City Tavern Restaurant

DSC04910

“Most genteel tavern in America” – John Adams

This is one of my favorite stops in Philadelphia. The City Tavern is a restaurant that serves gourmet cuisine using authentic 18th-century recipes inside of a historic 18th-century building. This spot was a favorite meeting spot of the Founding Fathers and of many members of the First Continental Congress after long days at Carpenters’ Hall. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Richard Henry Lee and Peyton Randolph were some of the regulars. It was built in 1773 and was the location of the first Fourth of July Celebration in 1777. The building was partially destroyed by fire in 1834, demolished in 1854, and rebuilt in time for the 1976 United States Bicentennial. It is owned by Emmy Award winning TV host and James Beard-nominated Chef Walter Staib. He has a cooking show called A Taste of History that explores America’s culinary beginnings by getting to know the Founders through the food that they ate. The City Tavern building has five levels and includes kitchens, a bar room, two coffee rooms, and three dining rooms. Servers and staff members dress in colonial costumes that reflect the times of old. You can order a flight and sample the four main beers that are named after the founding fathers themselves. Research was done to recreate these drinks. I ordered their delicious Colonial Turkey Pot Pie and a Thomas Jefferson’s 1774 Tavern Ale for dinner. This flaky pot pie is filled with chunks of turkey, mushrooms, early peas, red potatoes, sherry cream sauce and baked in a pewter casserole. It was fantastic and I enjoyed my beer as well. This was such an amazing experience for me as I am a huge history buff and this place gave me an opportunity to have a taste of history.

DSC04904

DSC04905

DSC04906

DSC04907

DSC04909

DSC04915

Thomas Jefferson’s 1774 Tavern Ale

IMG_2147

Colonial Turkey Pot Pit

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

My first visit in 2009

In 2009, I visited Philadelphia for the first time while touring the East Coast and discovered the City Tavern after going on a ghost tour. It was a cold rainy night and I ended up having a Brawler from Yards Brewing Co. It was such a fun first experience for me knowing that our Founding Fathers used to hang out in this spot and drink brews. I noticed that they sell a cookbook of some of their popular dishes. I hope to pick it up someday.

tavern

City Tavern Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

S’mores

So I have a friend that made these amazing treats for a fundraiser. I want to eventually feature her on my blog because she makes amazing pasties – so I am giving a sneak preview of one of her awesome creations. These are s’mores that she modified from a Pinterest recipe. I told her she has gotten me the itching to cook again and that I look forward to cooking a gourmet meal alongside her amazing desserts someday.

What is a Foodie?

From Wikipedia…

Foodie is an informal term for a particular class of aficionado of food and drink. The word was coined in 1981 by Paul Levy and Ann Barr, who used it in the title of their 1984 book The Official Foodie Handbook.

Distinguished from gourmet. Although the two terms are sometimes used interchangeably, foodies differ from gourmets in that gourmets are epicures of refined taste , whereas foodies are amateurs who simply love food for consumption, study, preparation, and news. Gourmets simply want to eat the best food, whereas foodies want to learn everything about food, both the best and the ordinary, and about the science, industry, and personalities surrounding food.

Pursuits. Foodies are a distinct hobbyist group. Typical foodie interests and activities include the food industry, wineries and wine tasting, breweries and beer sampling, food science, following restaurant openings and closings, food distribution, food fads, health fads, and nutrition, and restaurant management. A foodie might develop a particular interest in a specific item, such as the best egg cream or burrito. Many publications have food columns that cater to foodies. Interest by foodies in the 1980s and 1990s gave rise to the Food Network and other specialized food programming, popular films and television shows about food such as Top Chef and Iron Chef, a renaissance in specialized cookbooks, specialized periodicals such as Gourmet Magazine and Cook’s Illustrated, growing popularity of farmers’ markets, food-oriented websites like Zagat’s and Yelp, publishing and reading food blogs (a number of people photograph and post on the Internet every meal they ever make or consume), specialized kitchenware stores like William-Sonoma and Sur La Table, and the institution of the celebrity chef.