Happy Easter! I hope the Easter bunny brought you some chocolate almonds (Piedras de Chocolate from Spain). They came all the way from Wegmans in our case. (If not, malted chocolate eggs will probably work okay, too.) Pair them with a Twisted Sidecar by the fire (as it was snowing today!) for a relaxing and elegant ending to your Easter.
1 1/2 ounces Pierre Ferrand Ambre cognac
3/4 ounce Cointrau
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
1/4 ounce fresh orange juice
Demerara sugar for rim
Run a lemon wedge around the top of your glass, then dip it in a small amount of Demerara sugar to coat the rim. In a shaker over ice mix ingredients and shake well. Strain into glass and garnish with twists of lemon and orange (twisted together).
Pierre Ferrand Ambre Cognac is an awesome value. For $40 you’ll get a blended cognac aged, on average, 10 years. It’s smooth, light, and bright with flavors of vanilla, honey, oak, and a mix of citrus and flowers. It’s very nice on its own, and excellent in cocktails.
First off, happy St. Patrick’s Day! May the luck of the Irish be on your side today! Ya may be askin’ what Disney has to do with a nice, tall, shamrock-laden pint. Considering I had it in Epcot at the Rose and Crown pub…a lot!
Along with the beer, I had a Scotch egg. Between the pint, the egg and the pub, all 3 British Isles were covered.
The Scotch Egg. Yum.
The Rose & Crown Pub.
Weston captured me grabbing a quick iPhone shot.
The rest of this post is coming from all the way back in 2013. Yes, I have been that busy. No excuses, it’s just that the studio has been busier than ever. A big thank you to all who have made that happen.
Southwest direct flights. The best way to get from ROC to MCO.
Let’s hear it for free drink coupons!
Welcome to the All-Star Music Resort.
Let’s hit the parks!
Sunset in the Magic Kingdom.
Paper FastPasses, a thing of the past.
Gaston’s Tavern, a great place to relax.
Be Our Guest entrance.
The ballroom at Be Our Guest.
A princess and her princes.
Aladdin’s Magic Carpet ride.
Me and my girl chillin’ on the peoplemover.
Big Thunder Mountain.
Camden’s picture avoidance technique. And an ode to Spock.
Cinderella’s castle reflection.
Splash Mountain. The last time I’d ever see my Studio 2B hat.
On to a couple resorts and Epcot!
Mickey waffles at Chef Mickey’s.
Chef Donald and a bunch of goofballs.
Heading for the monorail.
Proof that there were once Kodak picture spots.
Epcot’s France pavilion. Go here for ice cream!
The spiked ice cream martini, with French Rum.
R.I.P. Polynesian waterfall.
Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom!
Sharing a frozen cocktail with my princess.
Tusker House, a hidden gem.
Goofy wouldn’t leave until he got a hug from Heather.
My lovely bride has published another book with her brother, the third installment in the José Picada series entitled Act of Abduction. During my private reading (yes, I am privileged), I learned that this book has a pivotal scene featuring the José Picada Margarita. Heather asked if I could come up with a recipe that would be appropriate for Chef Al. I did my best. I hope you enjoy the José Picada Margarita as much as I know you’ll enjoy the book. Salud!
The José Picada Margarita
2 oz. Casamigos reposado tequila
1 oz. fresh squeezed lime juice
1/2 oz. Ancho Reyes liqueur
1/2 oz. Grand Marnier
1/2 oz. agave nectar
Shake and pour over crushed ice. Garnish with jalapeño and lime.
Happy New Year’s Eve! I hope you all had a fabulous year and are looking forward to 2015! It was a busy end to the year here on 2eat2drink, and we are closing the year out with over 19,100 views! Wow, I’m not sure what to say other than thanks and I hope you are eagerly awaiting my next posts. I have 4 cocktails coming up soon. Here are previews of the photos…recipes to come. Be safe and cheers!
I like pho. Do you like pho? I bet you do. You just don’t know it yet. Pho is Vietnamese noodle soup. I wanted to make the authentic version, but figured it would take too long (who has three hours to make stock?), so enter… Thai culinary stock. Some recipes use a chicken stock, but I figured the Thai stock would have a flavor profile closer to Vietnamese. Or something like that.
I used this recipe as a rough guideline, but as usual, I changed a few things. I specifically liked the idea of pan searing some of the elements to add more flavor; thus the mini stir fry. Enjoy!
1medium onion, peeled, halved through root end
2 Thai chili peppers or ½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2garlic cloves, crushed
2star anise pods
11” piece ginger, peeled, chopped
8cups Thai culinary stock
1 lb. of peeled and deveined shrimp
2 cups baby bok choy, chopped
1 cup beech mushrooms
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
8ounces Thai Kitchen straight rice noodles
Mung bean sprouts, fresh cilantro leaves with tender stems, thinly sliced scallions, chopped unsalted, roasted peanuts, and lime wedges (for serving)
Heat a dry large cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Cook onion, cut side down, until lightly charred, about 5 minutes; transfer to a plate.
Add chiles (if using crushed red pepper flakes, add with fennel seeds), garlic, cinnamon stick, and star anise to skillet and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add fennel seeds and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 20 seconds (do not burn). Quickly transfer to a large saucepan (reserve skillet) and add onion, ginger, and broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until broth is flavorful.
Meanwhile, heat oil in reserved skillet over medium-high heat. Season shrimp with salt and pepper, toss in the skillet with baby bok choy and beech mushrooms. Stir fry for a minute or two until shrimp is cooked through.
Cook noodles according to package directions. Divide among bowls and add stir fry. Strain broth and ladle into bowls. Top pho with bean sprouts, cilantro, scallions, and peanuts and serve with lime wedges.
This was so easy, and so fabulous. Sautéed calamari is a frequently ordered item when Heather and I go out, but I’m kicking myself for not making it before. All in all, prep and cook time was 15 minutes or less. The recipe is below. As usual, I’m pretty vague with my portions (you just need to feel it). Make sure to do the cooking in portions, as the calamari must be cooked in a single layer. The sauté time is quick, so you need to make sure it gets cooked through. Enjoy!
1 pound cleaned calamari
2-4 garlic cloves chopped
crushed red pepper flakes
tri color grape tomatoes, halved
small bunch chopped oregano
small bunch chopped parsley
fresh cracked black pepper
Dry calamari with a paper towel and cut into 3/4″ rings. The tentacles can be left whole, unless very large.
Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat until smoking. Add butter (to taste), then only enough calamari to cover the pan surface. Add similar portions of garlic, tomatoes, oregano, and parsley to the pan, and season with salt, pepper, and pepper flakes. Cook, tossing frequently, until squid is opaque and cooked through, about 1 to 2 minutes. Make sure not to overcook. Repeat until all the calamari is cooked. Squeeze lemon over squid, toss and serve.
Every time I passed the sushi case, the octopus was there, daring me to step up and order some. Yesterday, I finally did. Have you had it before? You just have to get past the fact that it’s covered in suckers. The texture is not nearly as chewy as you may think. Heather described it as almost crunchy, like a soft water chestnut. It has a mild flavor and is truly excellent.
It was too beautiful not to photograph the whole leg, but we served it diced up into bite-sized pieces, along with finely diced ginger and scallions, and drizzled with teriyaki sauce.