Archive for July, 2011
Since the sun has decided to appear this summer…a little bit (in the Northwest!)…and there is nothing better than a great burger grilled in the back yard, let’s chat burgers! Burgers are hot these days – from Seattle to New York, there seems to be gourmet burger places popping up everywhere. You can certainly find some hip burger combos around the city with some unusual combinations, such as peanut butter and bacon, pimento cheese and pickled peppers or even a “shee shee” croquet madam version topped with a fried egg, ham and a sprinkle of crispy julienned truffle fries. These are not your typical meat-on-a-bun burgers!
How about hosting a DIY burger bash – you provide the burgers , buns and toppings and then ask your guests to bring a fun salad or delectable dessert, and you’ve got the city’s hottest new gourmet burger bar right in your own backyard! This is a great way to let family and friends build their own dream burger with the only limit being their imagination!
Pick up some artisan buns from one of our fab local bakeries like Macrina or Essential for a tasty base to your burger masterpiece and use different types of patties and meats; local grass-fed beef, lamb, salmon, turkey and even portabella add a little flair to the classic burger.
Offering a variety of spreads and toppings is another fantastic way to jazz up a burger; pestos, mayo jazzed up with fresh herbs mixed in, chipotle ketchup, unique mustards. On the cheese side of things, you could put out soft chevre goat cheese, sliced fresh mozzarella, aged gruyere, white cheddar…get creative! You’re not limited to just pickles, either. I love to mix it up with sliced cornichons, pepperoncini, pickled daikon or even kim chee. From the market, pick up local heirloom tomatoes, crisp arugula, and fresh cucumbers for crunch – the possibilities are boundless.
Here is one of my favorite gourmet burgers – my Italian inspired Bruschetta, Pesto and Arugula Burger, topped with delicious fresh mozzarella, sweet onions and a luscious drizzle of balsamic glaze.
So whether you’re hosting a hungry crowd or just making dinner interesting, go forth and grill up some gourmet burger goodness! Cheers! – Kathy
Tomato Bruschetta, Pesto and Arugula Burgers
Makes 6 half-pound burgers
3 lbs. lean ground beef
1 tsp Kosher salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 Tbsp soy sauce
4 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp chopped garlic
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
1 1/2 tsp minced garlic
3 large vine ripe tomatoes, sliced
salt and pepper to taste
sliced fresh mozzarella
sliced sweet onion
fresh arugula, washed and dried
balsamic glaze, available at well-stocked grocery and specialty stores
6 artisanal buns
To make the burgers: Mix meat, salt, pepper, soy sauce, Worcestershire and garlic until thoroughly combined. Shape beef into 6 equal patties, about 5 inches in diameter.
To make the Tomato Bruschetta: In a medium bowl, combine all the bruschetta ingredients. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
To grill: Heat charcoal or gas grill until very hot. Set patties apart on grill, turning when first side is browned. Top with with cheese and cook to desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side and until the cheese is melted, depending on your heat. Split buns and toast lightly.
To serve, spread a generous portion of pesto on the top and bottom buns. Place the burgers on buns, top with bruschetta tomatoes, sweet onions and a generous helping of fresh arugula, drizzled with balsamic glaze, top and serve.
Recipe © 2011 Kathy Casey Food Studios
July 29th, 2011
Don’t miss Q13’s Mornings with Kaci this Friday, July 29th! I’ll be chatting with Kaci at my Food Studios all about summer herbs and mix up some refreshing herb cocktails and non-alcoholic summer sippers live on-air at 7:20, 8:20 and 9:20 AM.
Make sure you tune-in! We’ll be shaking up the garden-fresh Tuscan Rosemary Lemon Drop, a refreshing Cherry Basil Collins and a bright and bubbly (and non-alcoholic!) Ultimate Lemon Lavender Soda. Cheers! -Kathy
Tuscan Rosemary Lemon Drop
A DIY Rosemary Sugar rim adds a great herbal note to this ever popular cocktail!
For a demo on how to make this drink, go to Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen.
Makes 1 drink
Rosemary Sugar (recipe follows)
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 1/2 ounces Moon Mountain Organic Vodka
1/2 ounce limoncello
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
1/2 ounce Simple Syrup*
Garnish: small rosemary sprig
Rim a large martini glass with rosemary sugar and set aside.
Bend 1 rosemary sprig and drop into a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice. Measure in the vodka, limoncello, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Cap and shake vigorously. Strain into the sugar-rimmed glass. Float a rosemary sprig in the drink for garnish.
Makes 1 cup
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves, coarsely chopped
1 cup superfine or baker’s sugar
Mix the rosemary and sugar together, and spread the mixture on a rimmed baking sheet. Set in a warm dry place for about 4 days, until the rosemary is completely dried. Process in a Vita Mix blender until finely ground. Store in a tightly sealed container for up to one month at room temperature.
*Simple Syrup: combine 2 cups sugar with 2 cups water in a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil then immediately remove from heat. Cool and store refrigerated.
Recipe adapted from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books
Cherry Basil Collins
Fresh Washington cherries pair well with fresh basil in this tasty drink. Check out an episode of this drink on Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen.
Makes 1 cocktail
3 – 5 fresh cherries
1 – 2 basil leaves
1 1/2 ounces Purity Vodka
3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice
3/4 ounce simple syrup
2 ounces soda water, chilled
Garnish: fresh lemon wedge, fresh cherry and a small basil leaf
Drop the cherries and basil into a mixing glass. Press with a muddler to release the juices. Measure in the Purity Vodka, lemon juice and simple syrup. Fill with ice. Cap and shake vigorously. Add a big splash of soda water. Strain into a Collins glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish.
Recipe by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen™
Ultimate Lemon Lavender Soda
You can also muddle in fresh Lemon Balm if you have it growing in the yard. If you want to add a spirit I like to make it with Voyager Gin made in Woodinville, Washington.
1 1/2 ounces fresh-squeezed Paramount Citrus lemon juice
2 ounces Zesty Lemon Lavender Syrup (recipe follows)
3 ounces chilled soda water
Garnish: long fresh lemon zest twist
Fill a large tall glass with ice. Add the lemon juice and the Zesty Lemon Lavender Syrup. Add soda water and stir. Garnish with lemon zest.
Zesty Lemon Lavender Syrup
Makes 2 1/4 cups
3 Tbsps. finely minced lemon zest (with no white pith)
4 – 5 fresh lavender flowers
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
Combine the zest, flowers, sugar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a quick boil over high heat. Boil for 1 minute then remove from heat and let cool. Let lavender steep in the syrup until it is cool, then remove and discard flowers. Store refrigerated for up to 3 weeks.
Recipe by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen™
July 28th, 2011
I’m shaking it up again — Season 2 of Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen™
I am so excited to have just completed shooting the second season of my cocktail show Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen with Small Screen Network! Keep your eye out for these tasty cocktail episodes, which air every Tuesday!
A sneak peek at my Envy cocktail!
If you’ve seen my recent tweets then you saw some of the inside scoop while in mid-filming. This season is full of great cocktail recipes from inspired classics to fun & inventive cocktails, including a DIY raspberry syrup that I use in a Clover Thyme Club as well as a Whole Fruit Strawberry Daiquiri and a Cherry Chocolate Bourbon Spirited Milkshake! To kick-off the first season, I invited world-renowned mixologist Charlotte Voisey to show us how to make her Port of Mischief Punch. Special episodes also include a fun trip to Eastern Washington and Oregon where I demystify the maraschino cherry and take you on a tour of how they’re made from orchard to jar. I hope you will tune in weekly for some Liquid Kitchen inspiration. Cheers!
If you’re a cocktail enthusiast, then check out these must-have new books! Food & Wine just published their Food & Wine: Cocktails 2011 and is available now. I penned the vodka chapter which is loaded with recipes from myself as well as guest mixologists Anu Apte from the Seattle’s Rob Roy and H. Joseph Ehrmann of San Francisco’s Elixir. Some of my faves for summer include my Tea’Thyme and Pineapple Pico cocktails.
Spirit Industry icon Gary Regan recently published his Annual Manual for Bartenders, 2011. After careful research and testing, “Gaz” picked his top 101 mixologists recipes! It’s an amazing book for any mixologist or budding bartender – I’m honored to have my Bollywood cocktail recipe included. If you love cocktails, make sure to sign up for Gaz’s Ardent Spirit newsletter – it’s one of my faves!
More Cocktails at the Manhattan Cocktail Classic
In May, I traveled to New York and imbibed with some of the best mixologists, bartenders and cocktail enthusiasts at the Manhattan Cocktail Classic! Along with famed mixologists Charlotte Voisey and Jamie Boudreau, we led an informative and interesting seminar called “Three Mixologists, Three Cocktails, Three Ways or Cocktail Menage a Trois!” We each took three classic cocktails and put our special spin to them. You can see a video of our demonstrations on Small Screen Network.
IACP—International Association of Culinary Professionals
This past June my Culinary Associate Heather Jones and I traveled south to Austin, Texas for this annual conference. This is a worldwide industry event inviting culinary experts from all areas (chefs, restaurateurs, photographers, etc.) to come together, attend seminars and dish out tasty offerings. This year I led a specialty seminar called “Better to be Bitter.” People loved the hands-on a tasting and learning just what bitters are as well as how to use them… it really is better to be bitter!
The IACP cookbook awards are always a must attend event. I am so excited for chef pal Lisa Dupar whose cookbook Fried Chicken & Champagne won Best First Book – a great honor! Congrats Lisa!
After a week of seminars by legends like Shirley Corriher (making her famous lighter-than-air biscuits and teaching us all about baking science) to some fine Texas cuisine demos by luminary Chef Stephan Pyles, it was time to check out Austin’s food trailers (trucks) with chef gal friends Danielle Custer and Lisa Dupar.
My new friend, a Texas Armadillo!
Lisa Dupar and Danielle Custer checking out the East Side King Food during our Austin food trailer foray!
The Local Yolk food trailer … so cute!
The temperature was HOT for these NW gals … but we trekked on to taste quite a few of the city’s best street grub.
Gourdough’s was my fave — and the naughtiest! Giant doughnuts topped with crazy and oh-so-tasty things! Funky Monkey: grilled bananas and cream cheese icing. Porkey’s: Canadian bacon, cream cheese & jalapeño jelly. Mother Clucker: fried chicken and honey butter. Yes, quite a gut bomb, but oh-so-good!
Gourdough’s BIG FAT DONUTS!
Other food venders ranged from Korean barbecue to fish and chips with curry sauce to killer Texas-style BBQ. I’m full just thinking about it!
Tales of the Cocktail
Tales of the Cocktail is probably the biggest of the cocktail events this year. Every July, mixologists, spirit producers and enthusiasts from all over the world convene for a week of amazing parties, liquor tastings, spirited dinners and seminars. This year I did a seminar with internationally renowned Modern Mixologist Tony Abou-Ganim on H2O Cocktails. We discussed the how’s and why’s of water–based cocktails using flavor–infused waters with complex–character vodka. Master Distiller Thomas Kuuttanen from Purity Vodka joined us to answer all those geeky questions that we couldn’t. TOTC is open to the public so you don’t need to be a pro to party with the professionals. Stay tuned for my next newsletter to hear all the imbibing details. In the meantime, check out an episode of Kathy Casey’s Liquid Kitchen to see how to make a Purity Watermelon Habanero H2O Cocktail — so perfect for summer sippin’!
On-Air with Kathy Casey! Dishing with Kathy Casey on KOMO New Radio
I’m excited to announce that you can catch me on Seattle’s KOMO News Radio AM 1000/97.7 FM! Art Sanders will be Dishing it up with me every weekend. I’ll cover what’s hot in Seattle from seasonal treats (cherry mojitos, anyone?), new restaurants and festivals (check out this lavender lemon soda) to entertaining at home. Catch me throughout the day and evening every weekend on KOMO!
Buzzin’ Around Town
As the summer months take over, I’m happy to announce that my bees are back with the addition of another hive! That’s right, I have two hives now! The bees love zooming around our urban garden and deliciously feed off the wild fennel blossoms and blooming edibles. I can’t wait to taste this year’s batch of yummy honey. You too can have a taste for yourself and order yourself a jar of my special Liquid Kitchen 5130 Honey!
Don’t forget to check my column D’lish with DList Magazine, my posts on Amazon’s Al Dente blog and keep your eye out for my upcoming column in in the new Sip Northwest Magazine, where I’ll be covering the newest NW Spirits and Bars!
I’ll be headed out California soon for the Flavor Experience then off to Canada for the Canadian Club Whiskey distillery tour! Stay tuned with my tasty tweets.
Wishing you a wonderful and d’licious summer! – Kathy
Be sure to follow me on Twitter (@KathyCaseyChef), Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog or find Sips & Apps on Facebook for all my tasty travel tidbits.
If you haven’t signed up for my Newsletter, you can sign up here.
July 26th, 2011
One of my super faboo friends from Secret Handshake, Dena Hysell, produced an independent film that is opening in theaters tomorrow, July 22nd! A Little Help stars Jenna Fischer (from The Office!) and Chris O’Donnell. It’s a movie for everyone who’s felt that life threw them a curveball out of nowhere and how to cope with it.
Here’s a post from Dena about why independent movies need our support.
Check here to see where this delightful movie is playing near you!
July 21st, 2011
This week, I’m heading south to The Big Easy – it’s time for Tales of the Cocktail, a spirited gathering of cocktail enthusiasts and talented mixologists from around the world! What better place to hold an event like this than New Orleans, a city known for its party-town attitude and great foods and drinks and of course the birthplace of the cocktail as we know it.
Speaking of its libatious history, the French Quarter circa 1830 set the stage for apothecary Antoine Peychaud, a Creole immigrant, to create the famous Peychaud’s Bitters. Bitters had long been used for medicinal purposes, said to cure everything from indigestion to jaundice and “hysteria” in women, but Peychaud’s secret family recipe, mixed with brandy was the concoction he delighted his friends with after hours. As if he wasn’t making enough of a contribution to mixology as we know it, he served his guests from eggcups, known as ‘coquetiers’ (pronounced ko-ke-tays), which evolved into the word cocktail. Good thinking, Antoine.
The drink caught on, particularly at The Sazerac Coffeehouse where it earned its name, made the switch from brandy to rye and gained a dash of absinthe. The rest is history!
And speaking of bitters – a lot of people ask me what the heck to do with bitters. I consider them the salt and pepper of cocktails. When a drink just needs that little extra something, throw in a dash of bitters. They add complexity and depth of flavor … I can’t imagine that Sazerac without them!
So, wherever you might be this week, raise a glass with me to magical New Orleans, the Sazerac, and the pioneers of cocktail creation like Antoine Peychaud and all my friends at Tales of the Cocktail!
Makes 1 cocktail
1/4 oz Ricard or absinthe
2 oz rye
1/4 oz Simple Syrup
4 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
Garnish: Wide lemon disk
Rinse a chilled Old Fashioned glass with Ricard or absinthe; set aside. In a mixing glass, measure in the rye, syrup and bitters. Fill mixing glass 3/4 full with ice and stir swiftly for 20 seconds. Strain into liqueur-rinsed glass without ice. Squeeze lemon disk over top of drink then drop in.
July 21st, 2011
With its ambience firmly rooted in the classic train
stations of Europe, stepping into Chef Michael Mina’s newest endeavor, RN74, is the perfect respite from the bustle of downtown Seattle. Mina has come home to Washington and his culinary roots to lead us on a gastronomic tour along ‘Route Nationale 74’, the main thoroughfare through France’s Burgundy region and the restaurant’s namesake. The bar, booths and the gentle clack of the flipping “Last Bottle” list, styled after retro train arrival and departure boards, all unite to leave you thinking your train will be arriving just as soon as you finish your glass of wine. And indeed, wine is a big part of the concept at this new hotspot; Mina has teamed up with Wine Director Rajat Parr to shine the spotlight on red and white Burgundy wines as well as local wine producers and various New World offerings. Of course, great wine needs great food and RN74 has absolutely no shortage of that. Elegant but unpretentious, Mina offers up classic French fare made with locally-sourced Northwest ingredients and his signature California flare.
Continue reading on Amazon’s Al Dente Blog.
July 20th, 2011
Fresh cherries really signal summer! Plump, juicy cherries, icy cold, are my idea of the perfect snack. Just sitting around on a hot day popping them in one by one is the start of a wonderful summer.
How about a big bowl of cherries for dinner? Why not! When the season is ripe enjoy them from beverages to baked goods.
One of my favorite easy apps is Cherry Bings – so easy you don’t even need a recipe!
Pit big Bing cherries (and if you don’t have a pitter use one of those disposable to-go chopsticks – I know you have in your kitchen drawer – to just poke out the pit!) Enrobe in some goat cheese and then roll in some toasted almonds! My idea of the perfect summer appetizer with a great glass of Washington wine!
One of my favorite cocktails to serve up in the summertime when friends stop by is Cherry Mojitos for a Crowd – make this ultra-refreshing sip up to three days ahead of time for your next barbeque or picnic – it serves about ten!
And of course dessert ideas abound … you know shortcakes aren’t just for strawberries. Fresh, pitted cherries tossed with a little sugar and kirsch liqueur make an excellent shortcake filling. But if you’re in the baking mood try my recipe for Summer Cherry Triple-Ginger Upside Down Cake.
Here’s to a summer filled with cherry-licious times. – Kathy
Photo courtesy of Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table – Armstrong Photography
Cherry Mojitos for a Crowd
Makes about 10 servings
1 bunch fresh mint (about 1 1/2 cups sprigs)
3 cups Bacardi Limón rum
2 cups sugar
2 cups fresh lime juice
1/4 cup clear cherry liqueur, such as Maraska maraschino
3 cups pitted fresh sweet cherries (about 1 1/2 pounds)
Loads of ice for serving
Two 10-ounce bottles soda water
Garnishes: fresh mint sprigs, fresh cherries on the stem
In a large nonreactive container, such as a glass pitcher, combine the mint, rum, sugar, lime juice, liqueur, and pitted cherries. Stir well to dissolve the sugar. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
For each serving, fill a large rocks glass or tumbler with ice and measure in 6 ounces (3/4 cup) of the rum mixture (I like to use a ladle to do this), being sure to get some of the cherries into each glass. Top with 2 ounces (1/4 cup) of soda. Stir, then garnish with a mint sprig and a cherry.
Chef’s Note: You can make the cherry-rum mixture up to 3 days in advance and keep it refrigerated—the flavors will just get better and better.
Recipe from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table, Chronicle Books
Summer Cherry Triple-Ginger Upside Down Cake
Makes 1 cake
4 Tbsp (1/2 stick) butter
1/2 cup packed, brown sugar
1 pound fresh cherries, pitted (about 2 cups)
For the batter:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour1 1/2 tsp baking powder1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp very finely minced fresh ginger
1/4 cup very finely minced crystallized ginger
3/4 cup sugar
6 Tbsp (3/4 stick) butter, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
3/4 cup milk
Position a rack in center of oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9-inch cake pan, and reserve.
In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat then stir in brown sugar. Bring to a boil, and then immediately drizzle into the prepared pan. Use a rubber spatula to distribute sugar mixture. Place the pitted cherries evenly around on top of sugar mixture. Set aside.
To make the cake batter: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, ground ginger and salt, and set aside. In a large mixer bowl, beat together the fresh ginger, crystallized ginger, sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and eggs and beat well. Then add flour mixture and milk, alternately, in 2 batches, mixing at low speed after each addition until just combined. Do not over-mix.
Spoon batter evenly over cherries in the pan. Spread batter gently, being careful not to move the cherries around too much. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean, about 45 minutes.
Cool the cake in the pan on a rack 15 minutes. Run a small knife around edges of pan to loosen cake. Place a large platter or serving plate over cake and invert cake onto platter. Serve warm or at room temperature with lightly sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream if desired.
Recipe © Kathy Casey Food Studios
July 15th, 2011
Check out Liquor.com for a fun article that I did on H2O cocktails! I even include my recipes for a Berry Purity H2O and a Pineapple-Cilantro H2O and show two different methods in making these!
July 11th, 2011