Category Archives: Nibbles
Thank You so much to Castello for sponsoring this post! As always, all opinions are my own.
Hello! Happy Spring!
I am so excited for a new season, and to share this post with you today. In the last month I’ve admittedly gotten lost in a few projects here in Florida, and spent many hours wandering with my camera in tow, and visiting with family and friends. The sunshine has of course been nice too.
If you follow me on Instagram, then you might know that the wine nights have been prevalent and that the marble board shown in these photos has gotten a lot of use as well (See here and here). It seemed like the perfect time then to partner with Castello, and show you how I have been able to entertain on the fly, and indulge in a few of my favorite cheeses and sips.
Like many people who are passionate about food, Alice Waters is one of my culinary heroes; for her pioneering local, organic, and sustainable food sources in the U.S., as the chef behind the renowned Chez Panisse, and especially on account of her work in developing The Edible Schoolyard Project.
On the project, she says: “We’re trying to bring children into a new relationship with food where they have an opportunity to work in a garden. They know what it is to plant the seeds and pick the weeds and they’re learning about what it takes to cook the food. … We’ve been separated from this experience through a kind of fast-food indoctrination that’s been going on for the last 50 years. So we need to really come back to our senses and really understand, like most every other country in the world, that food is something precious.” – via NPR
I am into every single thing about that.
I am also very into all of Waters’ books. I reach for one of them every time I am stumped on a basic idea or need an easy but elegant recipe. While Le Grand Aioli is a classic Provencal concept, I first learned about it while flipping through The Art of Simple Food, which is the connection here.
Aioli at its core is eggs, olive oil, and garlic whisked into a homemade mayonnaise. For the record, it’s nothing like the standard mayonnaise we buy in a jar. Aioli is smooth and creamy (not gloppy!) and makes an excellent dip for vegetables and poached seafood. I attempted infusing this one with a bit of beet flavor, but quickly realized that because aioli is meant to be somewhat tangy, the beet was just too earthy. It was another good reminder, that simple is always best.
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I wasn’t sure what to title this post when I was putting it together, mostly because this recipe is a bunch of different things! It includes a whole lot of veggies (Potatoes, lentils, radishes, kale, watercress, jalapeño peppers…You get the idea!). Those items are all piled together nacho style, but the nacho chips here are homemade potato chips. The homemade part is a non-negotiable in my book, as unlike a store-bought version, these chips have a crunchy/little bit chewy texture, and they taste extra-spud-sy. So, this platter is almost like a gigantic loaded baked potato too. The lentils are cooked down with spices, fresh rosemary, tomato paste, and Woodbridge Wines Chardonnay, and as such, pair perfectly with a glass (Or two!) of it!
What this recipe also represents is the perfect game day food! As you might know, this weekend promises to be pretty exciting in the world of football, and following that, we will all be celebrating the biggest “Big Game” of the year! Keeping in mind that the 2016 version of that game is going to be played for the 50th time (AKA, the Golden Anniversary!) in San Francisco, I set up this party plan with a nod to all things gold, and The City by the Bay.