La Brea Bakery Brunch

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I live right down the street from the new La Brea Bakery (and cafe!) and had a lovely brunch there a few weeks ago. I ordered a vegetable frittata (cremini mushrooms, white cheddar, blue cheese, tomato, spinach, blue potatoes, grilled scallions) which was WAY too much food for my own good. But definitely delicious and flavorful.

The restaurant has a wood fired pizza oven with bar seating a la Pizzeria Mozza. It was almost torture having to watch them being made when I knew I wasn’t about to indulge in one.

My friend had the blueberry ricotta pancakes which were fluffy and light. Especially for pancakes. I’m not much of a pancake eater so I always wish I could just order one (which I probably could)! But I’m usually more of a savory breakfast person. I’ll definitely be back as their bakery selection is extensive/overwhelming/gigantic.

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Friendsgiving

Last weekend I hosted a Friendsgiving at my home. I’ve been wanting to do this for years an it was a great success. I highly recommend it for anyone who doesn’t go home for Thanksgiving – or in my case for the weekend after Thanksgiving when everyone comes home.

Lots of food, conversation, wine, punch and laughter with some of my closest friends. Complete with “Fireplace for your home” playing on my TV. It really does add some ambiance.

The menu was as follows:

Cheese plate

Charcuterie

Brussel Sprouts (made by my friend Luisa)

Butternut Squash Lasagna

Stuffing

Mashed Potatoes

Mushroom Gravy

Braised Turkey Legs

Pumpkin Pie (made by my friend Eileen)

Cranberry Bourbon Punch

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Farmer’s Market Soup

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It’s finally Fall in Los Angeles! Well, for a few days at least.

When I got home from work the other day I thought, I want soup! Thankfully I have lots of fresh vegetables from the farmer’s market and was able to throw something delicious together. Here’s what I threw together:

Franny’s Fresh Veggie & Chicken Soup for One

1 Chicken Thigh (boiled til almost done on the inside)
1/4 Zucchini Squash, chopped
2 medium Carrots, chopped
3 large Kale leaves, chopped or ripped into bite sized pieces
1 medium Heirloom Tomato, chopped
1/4 Onion, chopped
1/2 cup Mushrooms, chopped (I used oyster and crimini)
1 medium Clove Garlic, smashed or whole
3-4 Cups Chicken or Veggie Broth
Herbes de Provence
Fresh Dill
Salt & Pepper
3 tbsp. Olive Oil

 

1. Warm Olive Oil in Stock Pot. Add Carrots, Onion, and Tomato and cook for 5 minutes. Salt and Pepper, to taste.

2. Add squash and cook for 3 minutes, until slightly tender.

3. Stir in Broth, Mushrooms, Kale and Garlic. Bring to boil, stirring occasionally.

4. Add Chicken and Bring to Boil.

5. Add Garlic, Herbes de Provence and Dill.

4. Simmer for 10-15 minutes and serve.

Shakshuka!

My brother sent me this recipe/video from the NY Times and I had to make it! I was home visiting my mom for Mother’s Day and pulled together my own version of Shakshuka, a classic Middle Eastern dish. Boy was it delicious!

shakshuka

Ingredients:
– 1 chopped onion
– 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
– 1 teaspoon cumin
– 1 teaspoon paprika
– 1 teaspoon cayenne (or similar hot spice)
– 3 or 4 small chopped peppers
– 1 chopped medium tomato
– 1 small can tomato paste
– 1 small can tomato sauce
– Extra Virgin Olive Oil
– 8 eggs
– salt & pepper
– hot sauce (for serving)

Heat oven to 375 degrees.

Heat oil over medium/low heat, add onions and peppers and cook until soft. Add garlic and cook til tender, then add cumin, paprika and cayenne. Add tomatoes and tomato sauce and cook for 10-15 minutes. Season with Salt and Pepper.

Crack 6-8 eggs over tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Bake in oven for 7-10 minutes until eggs are set.

Serve with hot sauce and enjoy!

Bludso’s BBQ

Bludso’s BBQ opened up a location around the corner from me and I was there last week for their opening day. About 20 other BBQ loving people were lined up when they opened on President’s Day.

They serve all their meat by the pound (or by links) and we had a pound of ribs and 1/4 pound of brisket, which was way too much for 2 girls lol. For sides we had Potato Salad, Collard Greens and Mac N Cheese.

You have your choice of hot vs. regular BBQ sauce. I like spicy but not too spicy so I chose the regular sauce. Everything was cooked to perfection.ย They also serve a large selection of cocktails including mint julep on tap. I’m not quite sure what that means but they are STRONG. Their jackpot cocktail is also delicious.

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Dates.

Proscuitto Wrapped Dates. So easy to make and so delicious! Recipe below.

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ingredients:

pack of proscuitto

dates

almonds (or other nut if you prefer)

1. Remove the pits from the dates and replace with an almond, close up neatly.

2. Cut proscuitto into thin date – width slices.

3. Wrap proscuitto around each date

4. Bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes, until proscuitto is crispy

Don’t eat them all in one sitting! ๐Ÿ™‚