Sunday Dinner: Italian Gravy

Italian Gravy before simmeringA few years ago, I took a trip to the east coast with my parents.  My dad was going to attend Thrillerfest in New York City, and we decided to make a week of it and stop in Philadelphia for a couple days first.  My boss recommended a few restaurants because she is from Pennsylvania, and we were well fed our whole trip.

The most memorable stop was Dante and Luigi’s, the oldest Italian restaurant in Philly.  They had a terrific lunch special with a choice of entree, salad, and an option for pasta with “gravy.”  Having never heard of this, I opted for something more safe, but my dad, not one to pass up gravy, went for it. It was easily the best thing on the table.  Basically, it was a rich, red tomato sauce with tons of meaty flavor, but no meat!   Continue reading

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Recipe Duo: Lemon Orzo with Tomato & Asparagus

Lemon Orzo Pasta Salad 1I love a good pasta salad, and this one is is a favorite of mine. There are a ton of variations of this particular salad floating around the food blogs, but the basic ingredients are orzo, grape tomatoes, asparagus, and lemon.  I add arugula for extra volume and a bitter bite.  But even though it is simple, this salad is special.

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Cheesy White Bean Dip

Cheesy White Bean Dip with CruditeAs promised, here is the recipe for the cheesy white bean dip that I served at my wine tasting party. During my research for the rosé taste-off, I found that this wine was easy to pair. I saw many suggestions for pairing rosé with hummus, but as a habitual hummus eater, I wanted something a little different. Continue reading

Chicken Salad Lettuce Wraps

Chicken Salad Lettuce WrapFor our wine tasting parties, I do extensive research to pair our wine choice with some delicious food. For our rosé taste-off, I was happy to find that this wine pairs with a variety of dishes.

Some specific tidbits I picked up about pairing rosé is that it likes creamy and it likes salty.  So, I decided that one of my dishes would be a creamy, crunchy chicken salad lettuce wrap. Continue reading

Wine Taste-off: Rosé

Wine Tasting 1Now that we’re grown-ups, my friends and I have become much more open to the drinking of wine.  We have also become much more snobbish about our wine.  Two Buck Chuck doesn’t cut it anymore.  But that doesn’t mean we are willing to drop all kinds of money on a bottle of wine either.  We strive to find as many affordable delicious wines as we can. As a result, I have started hosting wine taste-offs featuring mid-range priced wines. Continue reading