Garlic and Lime Skirt Steak

I love skirt steak. It’s not too expensive, it’s extremely versatile, and it can be as juicy, if done right, as a thick cut of meat.

Summer is all about fresh. And this hunk of meat is so delectable. I eat it on it’s own, but the way it is flavored, you can also use these steaks for tacos or a part of another dish.

Ingredients
10 ounces Skirt steak
1 cup chopped fresh parsley
10 garlic cloves, chopped
1 lime
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
olive oil
salt and pepper

To begin, start by chopping up your parsley and garlic into fine and medium pieces. I don’t want the rub to be entirely pulsed; it should have some body.

Juice the lime into a bowl and add the chopped parsley.

Next, add the garlic and red pepper flakes to the bowl. Add about 2 tbs olive oil. Stir everything together.

Get a skillet out and add a little olive oil. Get the pan hot, since we want to sear the steak and get it caramelized on the outside. Trust me, you want that crust! Salt and pepper your steak,  and then work the lime juice mixture into the meat (both sides). You will see the bright red color of the steak start to dull as the acid from the lime starts “cooking” the outer meat. This will help to seal in the juice.

Place the steaks onto the hot pan and add the leftover parsley and garlic from your cutting board. Cook on each side for about 4-5 minutes.

Once done, remove the steak and let it rest for 3 minutes on your cutting board. Slice and serve with whatever you have going on that night. For me, I paired it with my 5 Ingredient Kale Salad, which was just as fresh and delightful. My friend Kim from Fitness With Kim was over spending the evening with me, and we dined like queens while watching her film BRO‘ (ya…. she wrote it!). I have such amazing friends!!

Look out for me doing posts on her website once a month. Happy Eating!

Brody Approves :)

The Perfect 5 Ingredient Kale Salad

Summer is my favorite time of the year not only for the beach, the sun, and the hot weather, but the produce. I love summer fruits and vegetables. Nothing is better than fresh food with fresh ingredients. This salad only takes 5 ingredients, is lights, and is a great detoxifier for when you are feeling a lack of energy.

Ingredients
3 cups chopped, clean Kale
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup pine nuts
1 large lemon
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

This salad is so simple, because most of it is just putting things together. Once you have cleaned and chopped your kale, place it in a bowl. I love how leafy and organic Kale looks. It is really a beautiful green.

Next, add the cranberries and the pine nuts to the bowl.

Squeeze the lemon over the bowl and extract all it’s juices. Lastly, add the Olive Oil.

Salt and Pepper the salad to taste. If you think the greens are too acidic, add a little more olive oil.  The great thing about this recipe is since the Kale is a strong leafy green, you can make this and eat it later that day or the next day for lunch. The salad will not get soggy like a traditional salad would that has already been dressed.

I made my salad last night to accompany my lime and garlic rubbed skirt steak. It was a delicious meal, low calorie, and completely filling. I will be hosting monthly recipes on the website Fitness With Kim in a coalition to trying to merge food and healthy bodies. Remember; just because something is good for you, doesn’t mean it has to taste gross. Being healthy is all about moderating what you eat, and finding the balance between treating yourself in moderation, eating what is right for you, and exercise.

BRU Has, Krispy Kreme, and the Weekend

The beach always reminds me why I will never leave California…

My, my was my weekend full of food and exciting things to do. My mom was in town, which always means I am going to eat well. That woman can stock a fridge like no one I have ever seen. As long as you are in my mom’s house, you will never go hungry.

It started with a little bit of sad. My beautiful friend Jen is leaving sunny so-cal for her PhD at Stanford. She had a meet up for her departure this weekend at BRÜ Haus in Brentwood, which is always a Westside favorite. Along with an array of amazing beer, cocktails, and music, this pub has an amazing food selection. The place makes their own sausages and German food, which are exceptional. Here is just a list of their meats, but I suggest you check out the rest of the menu to see what else they have to offer.

DUCK & BACON 8.5
BOCKWURST 6.5
PAESANO SPICY ITALIAN 6.5
VEGAN SMOKED APPLE SAGE 6.5
TEQUILA HABANERO CHICKEN 7.5

I have had sausage here and it is amazing… but I come to BRÜ Haus for two things; their GIANT BAVARIAN PRETZEL with Cheese Sauce & Mustards and their SWEET POTATO TATER TOTS with Jalapeno Aoili. These two items are incredible. After a few drinks, we all got a giant soft pretzel and devoured it in a manner of minutes. I was really contemplating also getting the tots… but I didn’t want to look like a fatty in front of Jen’s guests. Honestly, why all Tater Tots are not made of sweet potato I will never know.

Saturday during the day, I headed to West Covina with my Graduate School class to hear a presentation on the new NFL Stadium being built in the Inland Empire, and also check out the Big League Dreams facility.

That’s when I saw it. Krispy Kreme… DRIVE THROUGH! The only KK drive through I know about it on the way to San Diego by Newport Beach. But right off the 60E to the City of Industry, there it sat in its delicious glory.

My classmate Federico is from Italy and has NEVER had Krispy Kreme. I took him to this fine American establishment and made him get the classic, a plain glazed donut. 10 seconds upon sitting down to eat this treat, the donut was gone. And he loved it. His American cuisine journey didn’t stop there. After class, starving and searching for lunch somewhere in the area I spotted a place I hadn’t been to in years, and I know Federico has never seen. Souplantation.

You have to be careful what you get here. Some of it is great, some of it sticks together like glue. But what you can’t beat is the huge salad bar that includes everything you could imagine. Surprisingly, Souplantation makes a great pre-made Cesar salad; lots of lemon, lots of garlic. They also have great soups. The pastas are not something I would always recommend. But again, its all you can eat for a 9 dollar price tag. Fed and I feasted, having a little bit of everything and leaving with a soft serve cone. I apologize in advance to his boyfriend Jason for the possible pounds Federico will be putting on soon.

It got chilly near the end of the day with the wind

Sunday day was spent at the beach. Main Street Santa Monica had their annual Summer Solstice festival, which included live music all night, food vendors, and a farmers market. One of my favorite things about living in So Cal is the fresh produce and the farmers markets. You find the most amazing fruits and veggies. But intermixed are usually bread companies, cheese, yogurt, ethnic foods, and vendors selling fresh goodies. It really is the perfect was to spend a Sunday.

The people watching is always great, but the food is even better. My mom and I always have to get one thing when we head to a major FM… Lula’s Tamales. The Green corn tamale with a pablano pepper is incredible. A little sweet, soft, tons of flavor. I always look out for a good lemonade too. Nothing can beat lemonade when you are strolling around on a sunny day.

Apparently we all got the hat memo

The day was glorious and ended in a lazy night in, feasting on cheese, meats, fruits, and everything else we collected on that morning’s shopping spree. Sunday’s should truly be a day of rest, and that is exactly what mamma and I did.

I hope you all had just as glorious of a weekend. The festival was also FULL of dogs (I wish I had brought my little man) but I took a photo of my favorite… a bulldog with a ginormous underbite!

Talk about a face you will never forget…

…like this one ; )

Brody mid lick and yawn

weihenstephan_logo

NBA Finals Game #5 At the Blue Dog

I know I talk about the Blue Dog Beer Tavern often, but I need to do it again.

So… who doesn’t love a good beer tasting menu with food? We all do. Don’t kid yourself. Recently, The Blue Dog has been doing pairing menus as specials on certain nights, and they are insane. Last night, I went to watch the Heat, unfortunately win the NBA Championship, with some friends at The Dog. We all got a mix of food, but did one order of the pairing to see what it was all about. Here is it…

The Blue Dog featured the beers from the Oldest Brewery in the world- Weihenstephaner.  A word from Paul Scrivano, owner:

This German Brewer has been perfecting its craft since 1040 A.D. and all the characteristics of a grand pedigree are evident- complexity, flavor, mouth feel, perfect effervescence, and smooth finish.  After visiting the brewery and experiencing the devotion they hold, it is easy to see why they have endured so long and continue to produce such a superior lineup of beers.

The Menu
Appetizer: Chicken and Sundried Tomato Sausage with mixed Cheeses, Crostini and fresh fruit paired with the Classic Weihenstephaner Hefe-Weis.
Main Course: A Wild Mushroom Burger with Arugula, Shaved Romano and Tapenade paired with the Dark, Bold Korbinian.
Dessert: Warm, Homemade Apple Streudel a la mode with the light, slightly sweet, slightly spicy Kristall Weissbier.

The sausage was one of the BEST items of meat I have ever eaten. It was so juicy, broiled, flavorful… just drool worthy. Pairing it with perfect toast, fruit, double creme brie, AND smoked Gouda… I died and went to heaven. I almost wanted that whole plate to myself for dinner. (Sidenote: If I could eat a cheese plate for dinner every night for the rest of my life, I would. Honestly.)

Not my Burger, but a picture of the Popper Burger

Now, I was so hungry… I forgot to take a photo of the burger! I KNOW!!! But, it was smothered in mushrooms and the cheese was a great salty compliment. The meat is always cooked perfectly, so no complaints there. Chef Luke really knows his stuff.

The beer? Delicious! The Korbinian was my favorite. It is the perfect beer for a non dark beer lover who wants to try a dark beer. The beer is a little sweet and has lots of caramel notes. It’s not like drinking a loaf of bread, like it is when having a Guinness. It also went fabulously with the burger’s saltiness.

Now… I know Apple Strudel was involved. BUT… when I come to the Blue Dog I have to get a giant ice cream sandwich. I mean, look at that thing!!! Warm cookies. Melty ice cream. Chocolate syrup. Your inner kid will smile when eating this.

Once again, The Blue Dog Beer Tavern stole my heart. Wedding invitations will be sent out soon ; )

Copa D’Oro

Photo from website http://www.copadoro.com/

There is this great bar in Santa Monica that I went to this past weekend called Copa d’Oro. I love places that get creative, and the drink menu at this place was amazing. So inventive and delicious. They also have a fabulous Happy Hour menu, which features a later time, starting at 5:30 and ending at 8, that gives us business people a chance to get out of work and make it to a great dinner without feeling pressed for time. Here is what they feature:

All Night Monday & 5:30-8pm Tuesday-Saturday

COCKTAILS

Bobby Burns

Scotch, Sweet Vermouth, Benedictine
Created in the 1920’s at the Savoy Hotel, London

Buck Fizz

Gin, Champagne, Fresh Orange Juice & Cherry Brandy
Created at the Buck’s Club in London in the ’20s

Dark & Stormy

Dark Rum, Fresh Lime Juice & Ginger beer
Bermuda’s National drink, originated mid 1800’s

Diablo

100% Agave Tequila, Crème de Cassis, Fresh Lime Juice, Ginger Ale
Origin Unknown… But First Appeared in Trader Vic’s Bartender Guide 1944

French 75

Gin, Fresh Lemon Juice, Topped With Champagne
Created in 1915 at the Paris Landmark Harry’s Bar

Gold Rush

Bourbon, Honey Syrup & Fresh Lemon Juice
Created somewhere in the U.S.A. in the late 1800’s

Manhattan

Bourbon, Sweet Vermouth, Angostura Bitters
Created at the Manhattan Club Early 1870’s

Mojito

Light Rum, Mint, Fresh Lime Juice, Soda
A Popular Drink Among the Cuban Working Class in the 1800’s

Moscow Mule

Vodka, Fresh Lime Juice, Ginger Beer
Cock ‘n Bull Restaurant, Hollywood 1941

Pisco Sour

Pisco, Fresh Lime Juice, Organic Pasteurized Egg White
Created Around 1920 The National Drink of Both Chile & Peru

Tommy’s Margarita

100% Agave Tequila, Fresh Lime Juice, Agave Syrup
Created by Julio Bermejo at Tommy’s Restaurant, Circa 1995

Ward Eight

Bourbon, Real Grenadine, Fresh Lemon & Orange Juice
Created in the Early 1900’s at Boston’s Ancient Locke-Ober Restaurant

BEER

Amstel Light
Dos Equis
Amstel
Cuauhtémoc Moctezuma

WINE

Lamarca N.V. Prosecco Veneto, Italy
2009 Paul Mas Sauvignon Blanc Languedoc, France
2006 Paul Mas Merlot Languedoc, France

FOOD

Lemon Artichoke Dip

House Made Lemon Artichoke Spread Made with Straus Dairy Organic Cream & Gorgonzola Dolce w/ Artisan Toast

Basil Pesto Dip

Puree of Chickpeas, Fresh Basil, Pine Nuts & Fresh Lemon Juice w/ Artisan Toast

Country Boy

Imported Baked Italian Parma Ham, French Cour Royalé Brie & Dijon Mustard

“Dealer’s Choice” Grilled Cheese

You pick from Either
Sierra Nevada’s Organic Raw Milk White Cheddar or BelGioioso Ricotta con Latte

Cassy, Danielle, Maret, Me, and Alyse celebrating Danielle graduating Nursing School.

I went later at night with my friends, and did not try any of the food. The cocktails though… delicious. There was about 15 of us, so I got to taste many of their special drinks. The bar also has another extensive food menu, which looks delicious. I plan on going back to try some dinner and tell you what it’s all about.

Kalamata Olive Goat Cheese Quesadillas with Dry Aged Salami

Yum. I love a good quesadilla. I served mine I ate last night with a simple cherry tomato salad. It was perfect.

Flour tortillas are universal and can be used with flavors outside of something spicy and Mexican. Which is why, when I was craving something crispy and buttery last night, I went with making a standard quesadilla. Remember the Green Chili Enchiladas I made? Well I luckily had leftover tortillas and got to inventing!

Yesterday’s meal was something you could easily make and place out as appetizers. All your friends will think you are so fancy. For me, I made 2 servings, so I was able to take the second one to lunch today. The men in my office are always jealous of what I am eating… I wonder why ; )

4 Fajita Size Flour Tortillas
4 ounces Sharp White Cheddar Cheese
3 ounces Kalamata Olive Goat Cheese
*Trader Joe’s has this. If you are without, mix 3 ounces goat cheese with 6 finely chopped Kalamata Olives
8 slices dry aged salami
2 shallots
1/2-1 cup spinach
2 tbs butter

To start, finely chop your shallots and set them aside. Lay two tortillas down and smear 1.5 ounces of the goat cheese on top of each. Next, evenly disperse the shallots between the two tortillas.

Next, lay 4 slices of salami per tortilla on top of the shallots.

Add the spinach next. Place 2 ounces of sliced cheddar (shredded is fine too) as the top layer of the quesadilla.

Add the tops to the quesadillas. Heat your skillet, to about medium low, and once it is hot, add 1 tbs of butter per quesadilla. Place the tortilla, cheddar side down, in the pan.

Once the side is browned up, carefully flip your quesadilla. The cheese should start to get melty. If it’s not, my trick it to place a bowl over the quesadilla, or a lid on the pan for a few seconds to trap the heat and help melt the cheese. When it is done, take the quesadilla out and let it rest a second before cutting it. Enjoy!

Mom, if you are going to give me a bath, at least give me a bit of quesadilla!!

Dodger Games Are For Dodger Dogs

Give me an invitation to a sporting event, and I am there (well, unless its a USC Trojan event…. and then I am there in Bruin Blue!). Give me an invitation to a Dodger game, and I am there with a wad of cash ready to buy Dodger Dogs and the other concessions that make game days so enjoyable.

Honestly, why does a hot dog and this American past time just go SO well together?

Dodger Dogs ($5, $6 for a Jumbo) are the perfect blend of hot dog. I have had other all beef hot dogs and just felt overwhelmed. These are juicy, and easy to eat. The salt ratio is also on point; the last thing you want is to feel overloaded with an intense salt flavor. My hot dog preference? Ketchup, onions, and a little bit of yellow mustard. There is also relish, mayo, and sauerkraut available for the dogs. Or for an extra dollar each you can get nacho cheese and jalapenos. The vessel for this meaty pup? A perfect hot dog bun. The bun is always soft, yet firm enough to handle the juicy hot dog smothered in condiments. I am getting hungry again just typing this…

Next to my hot dog, garlic fries. And not just any garlic fries, garlic fries from Gordon Biersch ($7). This brewery kills it in the fry department. Honestly, some of the best garlic fries I have ever had. Hot, crispy, plump fries smothered in this garlicky compote. And the serving size is more than enough to share with someone. It was the perfect accompaniment to my Dodger Dog and my beer. Andrew even got adventurous and topped his dog with some fries. I thought it was a dashing idea.

Andrew hogging all the popcorn

The last thing on the menu, something sweet… something addicting… Popcornopolis ($6). If you have never had this concession popcorn, you are missing out! It is unbelievable. The popcorn consists of fat full pieces of popcorn, no scraps and no extra kernels. Plus it has no trans fats and is gluten free, which makes everyone a happy camper. The Zebra popcorn, which is caramel corn covered in white and dark chocolate (ya… soak that in…. it’s oh k if you drool a little) is my favorite flavor. Unfortunately, they didn’t have any at this game, so we got the normal caramel popcorn. Which is equally as delicious. The caramel is the perfect blend of sweet with a hint of salty. Its rich, so I recommend sharing with someone.

I definitely tapped into my inner fat kid last night. And she was so happy.

What is better than good friends, good food, and a win for your Home-team! Nothing. Even if you don’t understand the game, or aren’t into sports, go for the ambiance. I am positive you will turn into a covert fan.

Reppin’ My Dodger Blue

For a Recap of the game, here is the summary from the Dodgers Website:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
LAA
0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 6 1
LAD
0 0 0 1 0 0 0 4 x 5 6 2

“One pitch after a two-out tying hit from Andre Ethier, who signed a five-year deal earlier in the day, Juan Rivera delivered a decisive three-run blast in the eighth off Jerome Wiliams to down his former team, ending the Angels’ 10-game road winning streak.”-MLB.com