Posts filed under 'Lifestyle'
It’s almost here! My Holiday Extravaganza & Open House is back this year and all set for Saturday, December 14th from 11:00 am – 7:00 pm! There’ll be goodies to buy and samples to try!
We’re opening the doors to my Food Studios once again for all your holiday foodie gift needs. We’ll have all sorts of things to nibble and sip on from tasty bites from my latest book D’Lish Deviled Eggs to samples of hot buttered rum and other delectable items.
There’ll be plenty of goods to grab to stuff your favorite foodies stocking from our own 5130 Honey to Dish D’Lish specialty products: seasoning salts, cocktail mixers and limited-edition preserves. For the bar enthusiast we’ll have our Liquid Kitchen Golden Era Bitters, and cocktail kits. As well as our house-made Jingle Bell “Cheese Balls” spiked with Hennessy Cognac.
The Holiday Extravaganza isn’t complete without our “Over 21” Real Fruit Cake made with Maker’s Mark. So get there early as these fly out the door faster than Santa’s reindeer!
1 lb loaf of holiday goodness!
So make sure to mark your calendars:
Kathy Casey Food Studios Holiday Open House
Saturday December 14th 11:00 am – 7:00 pm
5130 Ballard Ave NW
Seattle, WA 98107
I hope to see you soon for some holiday cheer! – Kathy
November 7th, 2013
Cha-cha-cha-CHIA! Yes, that is what we think of when we say chia. Those funny terra cotta heads sprouting green hair. Until now! Chia seeds are everywhere these days and have been sweeping the nation as an up-and-coming nutritional ingredient.
Who remembers these commercials?
Chock full of fiber and omega-3’s, these little seeds can be added to almost anything from juices, baked into muffins or even toasted and sprinkled on a salad! They digest quickly, hydrate your body better than sports drinks, and provide long-lasting energy. Athletes love them!
When soaked in a liquid, they become gel-like and are virtually tasteless. In Mexico, they are added in a drink called Chia Fresca made with fruit juice and chia seeds which have been plumped in water – sounds so refreshing! I love a plumped spoonful spooned over a margarita for fun texture!
I have also used them plumped then blended in a low-fat salad dressing – they work as a natural thickener so you can use less oil, and who doesn’t love that!? If you’re looking to add chia seeds to your diet, check out stores like Whole Foods, PCC, and in the “Natural Foods section” of most grocers to buy them or try them in a fun chia beverage.
And check out this chia seed post from Wellness Mama for more tricks and tips on what to do with them, including her recipe for healthy homemade pudding.
So try something new and get your Cha-cha-cha-CHIA on! – Kathy
To plump chia seeds: Soak 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds with 1 1/2 cups HOT water. Let sit for 1 hour then store refrigerated for up to 2-3 days.
October 25th, 2013
Twelve year old super foodie Carter McCarroll is our guest blogger today. I asked him to share his culinary adventures on his first trip to Japan this past summer (I’m jealous as I’ve never been there except for layovers in the Delta lounge!). Here’s part 1 of this young man’s trip.
Hello, my name Is Carter McCarroll. I am a twelve year old boy with a thirst for adventure. I live in Hinsdale, Illinois and I just started going to Hinsdale Middle School. My dad works for Kerry, a company that supplies food and beverage ingredients.
One of the main reasons I wanted to go to Japan was the food, but there are many reasons why I love food. Foods from around the world have so much rich history, different textures, and techniques for cooking certain foods. There’s just a whole variety of them! I especially like Japanese food. I just love the intense flavor of sushi when It’s dipped in soy sauce (with bits of wasabi in it) and topped with ginger. I also admire the Japanese udon noodle bowl. Noodles have always been my favorite food and I thought it couldn’t get any better until I tried the Japanese noodle bowl – in Japan! Which I will get into more detail later. That pretty much sums up why I love food, especially Japanese food.
We left for Japan on July 21 (a day that I’ll always remember). My dad and I planned that moment for such a long time and the day was finally there and it would just be the two of us flying! I was overwhelmed with excitement. I knew that I’d miss the rest of my family while I was away, since I had never been away from them for so long, nevertheless I couldn’t wait to fly to Japan.
When the plane landed, my dad and I felt an urge to eat noodles (even though It was 3 AM in Illinois). So after nearly four hours of train rides from Narita airport to Tokyo, we finally arrived at the hotel. There were a few Japanese restaurants nearby, so we decided to go to one of them. Luckily for us, our waitress could speak a little English. I ordered a beef noodle bowl that came with a side of rice and tempura. After we ordered, I felt so tired that I could just fall asleep sitting right there (It was 7 AM in Hinsdale and I still hadn’t slept – not even on the plane). I was just about to fall asleep when the waitress placed our food on the table. Even though I was literally half asleep, I dug into my food until there was nothing left. Even the rice was about 5 times better than I usually have back in the U.S. I loved the broth for the noodles. The mixture of everything was almost perfect…… then it was back to the hotel… of course we fell asleep almost immediately.
Our hotel room’s view of Tokyo
The next day was officially my 12th birthday. We were planning to do a whole lot of exploring that day, but kept it more low-key thanks to jet-lag. After a long day and a nap, we went to a local outdoor restaurant. I still wasn’t very hungry, but I ate something anyway. The best fried rice I ever had! It had the perfect warmth, mixture, and balanced flavor.
I felt a lot better the next day. We started off with breakfast in the hotel (which was fantastic!). There was sausages, eggs, noodles, miso soup, steamed rice with many toppings, a whole selection of breads, and so much more. After breakfast we took a cab to see some temples. Then we walked to Shibuya crossing, the busiest street crossing in the world!
Waiting our turn to cross at the busiest intersection in Tokyo!
After some more exploring, we headed back to the hotel to have a snack. We decided to share a small pizza at an Italian restaurant down the street from the hotel. We were actually surprised by how good that pizza was. This pizza was just a margherita. I’m not going to go into much detail about this, but let me just tell you – if you ever travel to Tokyo, stay in the Westin Hotel, and then if you’re In the mood for pizza, go there – its right in front of the hotel.
One of the best pizzas that I’ve ever had!
That night, we ate at a fancy Michelin star sushi restaurant. When our taxi dropped us off, it took us a while to find the entrance, but eventually we did. The first thing that caught my eye when we walked in was that this was actually a sushi bar. No tables anywhere and everyone looked so sophisticated. We sat down next to an elderly Japanese couple and right away, the waitress came and asked us what we would like…in Japanese. She was expecting us to instantly know what we were getting, but without an English-translated menu. I’m guessing that the people that come here are mostly regulars.
Me in front of the “hidden” entrance
My dad finally worked up the nerve to order with some finger pointing and limited Japanese. Our first course came ….it was a mushroom thing and some other seaweed stuff.
I didn’t even dare to try some. Especially after my dad did and said he didn’t like it at all. Next came some nicely cut raw tuna. Finally something that I could eat! It was magnificent! This tender, delicate delight was a perfectly cut juicy piece of tuna that I will never forget.
After that, we ordered some tempura. What came as a surprise was they also had fried corn! It was wonderfully sweet and savory at the same time! That was one of the best things I’ve ever eaten in my whole entire life. I think my dad liked it better than I did – he kept on talking about how brilliant it was.
Finally, we finished off with some miso soup – which was even better than the miso we had at the hotel. It was perfect blend of warm flavors. After that fabulous meal, we called it a day.
After 2 days of being In Tokyo, it was time to go to Kyoto. This used to be the capital city of the country. There are loads of very old temples with many mountains surrounding it and it’s the culinary capitol of Japan. To be continued…. – Carter McCarroll
October 15th, 2013
Do you have a sweet tooth? I know I do! And I have found some great new books to help you make your favorite local goodies right in your own kitchen!
“Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream”, recipes from the local beloved ice cream emporium, features sweet seasonal recipes for ice creams, sorbets and toppings made with local ingredients. I really want to try the recipe for Gingerbread and Cinnamon Ice Cream Sandwiches – Yum!
The new cookbook “Cutie Pies” is written by Dani Cone, the owner of Capitol Hill’s High 5 Pie. This book focuses on their signature miniature pies and has great tips for crusts, fillings and toppings. Her Cranberry Nut Cutie Pies would be perfect for your next holiday party!
Top Pot Doughnut fans can bake up some fun with their book “Hand Forged Doughnuts”. They reveal secrets and recipes so you can whip up the famed Valley Girl Lemon and Pink Feather Boa doughnuts at home.
And then there is liquid dessert… Autumn Martin, the founder of Ballard’s Hot Cakes has a new book: “Malts & Milkshakes: 60 Recipes for Frosty, Creamy Frozen Treats”. Can you say Chocolate Espresso Whisky Malt – YES please!
So check out these decadent books and give’em a try! -Kathy
October 11th, 2013
If you are a crafty person and love to make things with your hands whether it’s quilts, jewelry, cake decorating, etc., do I have the website for you! Check out Craftsy, a fantastic online learning center for all sorts of crafts!
My friend Cynthia Nims is teaching a cooking series all about French Home Cooking: The Essential Techniques! Her class is already one of the top sellers today, which is very cool. Cynthia’s classes tie into her cooking school roots at La Varenne cooking school in France. She shares many of those basic core French cooking techniques in her lessons, which are great building blocks for you to learn and become creative with! Lessons include vinaigrette and salade verte, beef & mushroom stew, fish chowder, cheese soufflé, a couple potato dishes and homemade rich vanilla bean ice cream. Yum!
She’s even shared a link for 25% off her class price. Her entire lesson covers over 2 1/2 hours of instruction with lifetime access!
Cynthia has so much wonderful and delicious knowledge to share. I hope you will sign up for her classes!
October 11th, 2013
Guest blogger and Food Studio Associate Chef Cameon Orel shares her fondest of memories about fall and watching her Nana cook up wonderful meals.
I love this time of year. The long days of summer have now faded, and the bbq is no longer the main source of cooking equipment. Fall is crisp filled with the promise of a new year. Kids dressed for the school bus, trees turning to the jeweled colors of autumn and I am magically transported to my Grandmother’s kitchen. My Grandmother, let’s call her Nana, any other name would not be right. She had the ability to transform the simplest of foods in to a feast.
During this time of year I would find her surrounded by the harvest of the garden. She was a year round gardener. Her garden supplied our family and many other families in the neighborhood with a year round basket of magic. She would mindfully fill baskets with kale, chard, winter lettuces, squashes, zucchini, radishes, and the late round of beans-CSA before it was cool. I always enjoyed watching her out my bedroom window with her apron held up to hold the three types of apples soon to be turned in to a crisp for our dinner that night. Often she would sit with various cookbooks and clippings planning the next few weeks’ meals. As I write about this I am mesmerized by how effortless she made it all seem. At any given moment she could have a cake in the oven, cow’s tongue on the stove, cucumbers pickling to be put up, dark chocolate and vanilla pudding setting for a snack and my favorite cookies in the freezer ready to bake.
My most memorable meals in her home involved very few ingredients; a Hubbard squash that she made in to a curry spiced soup, green apple and winter kale salad with dried fruits and nuts, braised Ox-tail served with homemade pork sausage and braised small heads of romaine, potatoes still musky from the dirt slowly roasted with hand churn butter. These foods may not sound like a young girls dream but it was what I knew, I grew up smelling the simmering pots, the steaming vapor’s of a freshly opened oven. I held the jars as my Nana pickled and stewed pumpkin for her famous pumpkin apple spice cake.
Nana’s cookbook and notes – perfect for inspiring fall meals.
So as the trees begin to change, the light dims, and the sun glistens on the dew filled spider webs. I am blissfully happy to know that it is time to pull out my Nana’s cookbooks, filled with her notes of lower the salt, great with a touch of nutmeg, great recipe and must make this for Aunt Betty, exchanged recipes from dear friends. I thumb through these ear marked and yellowed pages I am inspired to fall in love again with the cycle of cooking. I am reminded of a woman who many years ago knew that the best food comes from the earth.
– Cameon Orel
October 10th, 2013
I LOVE Dim Sum! A traditional Chinese way of preparing food, dim sum items are usually bite or individual-sized portions and typically enjoyed for breakfast or lunch.
Going for dim sum with friends or family is a great outing. If you’re not familiar with this style of food, dim sum dishes are typically wheeled around on carts within the restaurant. Diners can then pick and choose what they would like to try. The portions are small so you can be adventurous!
Tasty dim sum offerings!
(Photo from Seattle Magazine.)
I usually go for the steamed stuff like Shumai: small dumplings filled with pork and shrimp in a thin wheat flour wrapper. My faves are Har Gow shrimp dumplings and Char Sui Bao, which are fluffy steamed buns filled with BBQ pork filling. And then there is the Chinese Broccoli with Oyster Sauce and Salt and Pepper Squid –yum! Oh and there’s also chicken feet – not so much for me, but there is something for all taste adventurers.
Seattle’s International District has a lot of places to choose from. One of my favorites is Sun Ya. On the east side, check out Bellevue’s Noble Court. And for a fun day trip, head north over the border to Richmond, BC, which has an amazing array of places – Sun Sui Wah is a MUST!
Go with friends and have fun at dim sum. And don’t forget to tell me some of your fave places to try. – Kathy
September 19th, 2013
This time of year vegetables are piled high and looking beautiful at the farmers market – perfect to get cooking with for Vegetarian Awareness Week!
Going meatless once a week may help reduce your risk of health problems like cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. It can also help reduce your carbon footprint and save on precious resources like fresh water and fossil fuels.
Local cookbook author and food writer Kim O’Donnel is known as a champion of the Meatless Mondays movement. Her books “The Meat Lover’s Meatless Cookbook” and “The Meat Lover’s Meatless Celebrations” feature a ton of great recipes for vegetarians and carnivores alike!
One of my favorite hearty recipes teeming with veggies is Roasted Eggplant Caponata – so great to incorporate all those late summer veggies. Made with roasted eggplant, peppers and squash in a garlicky tomato sauce. Serve it with crusty French bread, cous cous or tossed in with whole wheat pasta. I love it scattered with torn basil and goat cheese if you’re so inclined!
So grab those fresh veggies and make your next meal meatless! – Kathy
Roasted Eggplant Caponata
This can be made up to three days ahead: reheat or bring to room temperature right before serving.
Makes 6 cups and serves 10 – 15.
1 medium eggplant (about 14 oz.), trimmed and sliced crosswise 1/2-inch thick
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons coarse (Kosher) salt
1 medium yellow squash
1 medium zucchini
5 medium white mushrooms, diced 1/4-inch
1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons dry red wine
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 jar (6 oz.) marinated artichoke hearts, chopped, liquid reserved
1 large tomato, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup tomato sauce
1/4 cup finely diced roasted red pepper
1 tablespoon drained capers
2 tablespoons minced Calamata olives or black olives
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Spread the eggplant slices on a baking sheet and drizzle or brush with 2 tablespoons of the oil. Season with 1 teaspoon of the salt. Bake for 25 minutes. Let cool slightly, then chop and set aside.
Meanwhile, slice the yellow squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the squash seed pulp and discard or reserve for another use. Cut the squash into 1/2-inch dice. Repeat with the zucchini. Set aside.
In a large, heavy saucepan, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over moderately high heat until hot. Add the mushrooms, onions, diced yellow squash and zucchini. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to brown lightly, about 4 – 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring for 1 minute.
Stir in the red wine, vinegar and artichoke liquid. Add the tomato, crushed red pepper, black pepper and the remaining 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring until the tomato softens, about 3 – 4 minutes.
Stir in the artichoke hearts, tomato sauce, roasted red pepper, capers, olives, basil, parsley and the reserved eggplant. Reduce heat to moderately low and cook for 3 minutes or until thickened. Serve warm.
Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.
September 5th, 2013