What’s Cooking: November

fall produce

We love this time of year because the produce is abundant and there are so many wonderful things to make! We’ve been spending our free time in the kitchen making large bowls of comforting pasta and soup, roasting our favorite fall veggies, and enjoying sweets with apple, pumpkin and cinnamon. In addition, we’ve been trying out some new recipes like these…

malaysian fried rice

 

A bunch of years back, Zak Pelaccio was cooking the most amazing Malaysian food at Fatty Crab in New York. I was at Fine Cooking magazine at the time, which gave me license to ask him for the recipe for his Malaysian Chicken and Rice (ha!). An eye-opening concoction of tender chicken pieces, crispy rice, fish sauce, ginger and green onions, its name belies its complexity and deliciousness. We still make it every little while, and darn if it isn’t as good as ever. Laurie, CEO + Founder

winter-squash-agrodolce

As a child, I hated squash but now I embrace it. There are so many things you can do with it whether it be roasting it with butter and sage, making a creamy squash soup or my favorite way: roasted and dressed with agridolce like this recipe here. Netanya, Social Media Manager

Now that it’s finally fall and whole lot cooler, I’m breaking out my pasta maker for some comforting bowls of pasta and homemade sauces. This Bolognese recipe is heavenly! Anna, Brand Strategist

Shameless plug, but I’ve been making my curried butternut squash soup on repeat. This soup is easy to throw together, forgiving, and versatile the best of kind of recipe. If I don’t have leeks on hand, I’ll use a yellow onion. If I’m in the mood for spice, I’ll add a tablespoon of red curry paste. Plus, this soup makes delicious leftovers! Edie, Account Manager

5 Things You Didn’t Know About…

Laurie Buckle

She is our constant go-to for new playlists,  a supportive boss who is always encouraging us to think bigger and a resource for all things food. Our #CookItCrew wouldn’t exist without her and we’re so happy to share 5 things you might have not known about her today!

  1. I’m a better eater than cook — a skill I learned when I worked at Bon Appétit, and we had to go to recipe testings twice a day. Each editor at the table had to describe in detail  what they liked or didn’t like about the dish, and how to fix it. The pressure!
  2. Bananas are the bain of my existence. I live in fear of finding them in smoothies, acai bowls, fruit salads, anywhere.
  3. Of all the apps on my phone, I love Shazam the best. I’m always making a playlist.
  4. Baking isn’t a strong suit, but I make one cake very well: Wolfgang Puck’s Gateau au Chocolat. It’s from his 1981 book, Modern French Cooking for the American Kitchen (I’ve made a mess of page 221!), and it never gets old.
  5. I spent 32 years in the corporate world before I realized I wanted to be an entrepreneur. Fancy that!

5 Things You Didn’t Know About…

Our #CookItCrew is made up of some amazing and talented brands & influencers, and today we’re chatting with Yumna of Feel Good Foodie. Her passion for the food industry and clean eating inspired her journey into blogging, and we’re so glad to learn five things we didn’t know about her today!

  1. I was born in Zaire (now the Republic of Congo) and grew up in Sierra Leone on the west coast of Africa until I was 11 years old. We left in 1993 when a civil war broke out, and we came to Dearborn, Michigan, where some of my dad’s relatives lived. 
  2. I’m obsessed with dark chocolate and have a piece every single day after dinner.
  3. My brother and I have the same name, but his name (Aiman) is the masculine version of my name (Yumna). My name means the right side, and I tell my husband it means I’m right and he’s wrong haha!
  4. I broke my left arm when I was 2 years old and became double jointed because of it.
  5. I was the Female Athlete of the Year in my graduating class of 400. I think it was mostly because all the best athletes just didn’t have the minimum 2.5 GPA to qualify for the award 😉

Road Food: Where We’re Eating

Being that our team is all over the country, we’re constantly sharing new restaurant recommendations with each other.  Here are some of the places we’ve been enjoying eating at lately.

Almost without fail, we do two things on Sunday mornings: Hit the Hollywood Farmers’ Market, and grab breakfast there at The Walrus and the Hedgehog. They get most all of their ingredients at the market, from bread to tomatoes, greens to eggs, which makes their food truly farm fresh and delicious! Laurie, CEO+ Founder

My husband and I recently spent the weekend in Aspen, Colorado. While every meal was memorable (and the backdrop equally impressive), my favorite lunch was at Spring Café. This bright, airy, and eco-friendly joint serves up feel good food: nutrient-dense smoothies, nourishing salads, hearty breakfast wraps, and the best dirty chai latte. Edie, Account Manager 

Since fall has finally arrived here in New York, I’ve had an urge to spend my weekends at farmers markets scouring all of the wonderful fall produce and in doing so, have discovered my new favorite bakery, She Wolf Bakery. Their rye bread is next level and their polenta loaf toasted with salted butter is my new treat and I don’t think it’s one I’m willing to share… Netanya, Social Media Manager

If you accuse me of rarely leaving the UES of NYC, then you’re not wrong. There’s almost everything you need in terms of cuisine from Italian to Szechuan to Indian. Which is why I was thrilled to find Blake Lane, the perfect healthy lunch spot that wasn’t Sweetgreen. Try the Poke or the Bibimbap. Anna, Brand Strategist

Last Sunday, we decided to drive out to Lookout Mountain to catch the sunset over the Rockies. It was beautiful— but as we took in the view, my stomach began to growl. I said— “Let’s get Thai!” When that cool air that swept through, that’s all I wanted— a hot bowl of Panang Curry at US Thai.  Jackie, Senior Account Manager

 

Photos: Walrus and the Hedgehog/ Spring Cafe / She Wolf Bakery/Blake Lane

 

 

What’s Cooking: September

corn salad

We’re making use of all the leftover summer produce we have laying around in our kitchens before we start dreaming of soups, stews and braised dishes. Here are our last-of-the-summer dishes we’ve been loving the last couple weeks.

I swear corn tastes sweeter when you know it’s signing off for the season soon. It’s also one of those ingredients that everyone (including the vegans, the vegetarians, the picky eaters and the meat eaters) in my family loves. So I’ve been on a mission to find the perfect raw corn salad. To date, this is the winner. Tonight, I’m trying this one. I’d love it if you sent me yours! Laurie, CEO + Founder

lemon curd

It’s not lemon season right now, but I do love a good lemon curd. I made this one and added it to yogurt, granola, and fresh berries. It’s the best breakfast treat! Netanya, Social Media Manager

pesto

By some miracle, my basil plant is still thriving indoor herbs and filtered sunlight for the win! Until I start craving all-things pumpkin spice, you can bet I’ll be adding basil to most of our dishes. Recently, I’ve been using our organic basil in this pesto spaghetti squash. As far as weeknight dinners are concerned, it’s a winner. Plus, I swear the ‘pasta’ tastes even better the next day. Edie, Account Manager

I’ve just learned the trick to a perfectly-seared salmon fillet—don’t take it out of the pan too early! If you can trust that it’s not burning and allow it to get that deep, golden-brown color, then you can look forward to a truly great meal. I’m obsessed. Obviously, we’ve been eating a lot of salmon lately, mostly paired with roasted cherry tomatoes and a drizzle of basil oil. It feels just right for the end of summer. Renae, Senior Brand Strategist

frittat
This past month has been a whirlwind with loads of travel. Which means I’m constantly cleaning out the fridge and throwing things together for meals. Something easy that I like to do is just throw together a frittata using up random ingredients. They’re also delish for any meal. It’s a win-win. Anna, Brand Strategist

Road Food: Where We’re Eating

milkflower pizza queens

Here at CookIt, we love discovering new restaurants and thought it would be fun to share a few of our favorite spots we’re loving right now!

Tucked behind Melrose Place in the heart of L.A., Croft Alley is a rundown-chic little spot that I love for lunch. If it’s sunny, grab one of the rickety tables on the alley; otherwise, settle in at the communal table in the indoor patio. First, order the turmeric lemonade. From there, you really can’t go wrong with anything on the innovative menu, but I have a soft spot for the risotto and the vermicelli (which are entirely unlike their more familiar renditions). Their most ‘grammed dish is the cauliflower grilled cheese, which hinges on a classic, indulgent bechamel sauce. Laurie, CEO+ Founder

I’m going to go out on a limb here and jump straight to the good stuff: Sweet Cooie’s. This place is unlike any other ice cream parlor I’ve ever been to. With patio lights and an old-timey feel, this quaint Denver establishment is where sweet tooth lovers rejoice. They serve delicious frozen treats (including horchata vegan ice cream!), homemade truffles, and the most insane ice cream sandwiches. The dog days of summer never tasted so sweet. Edie, Account Manager 

There’s one small spot in NYC that I go back to again and again, Cotenna. It’s a dark, intimate spot great for a wine lunch or dinner. You can’t go wrong with anything you pick here, though I swear by the grilled lamb chops, beef meatballs or any of the pasta dishes. Bring your friends, family or SO. It’s the best spot for everything, and tops my list of NYC restaurant recs. My only regret is that I don’t live down the street anymore. Anna, Brand Strategist

When I just want to dive into a big bowl of pasta without the to-do of dressing up or making a reservation, I go to Maccheroni Republic. It’s a casual, no-nonsense spot that does all the classic fresh pastas you could want and does them well. I’m partial to the boar ragu and the pumpkin ravioli. They do indeed have a full menu with appetizers and entrees. Sometimes I will get the octopus or the panzanella, which are both great. But I’m usually inclined to get right to the point: the pasta. Renae, Senior Brand Strategist

Whenever friends come to visit me in Queens, Milkflower is always on the itinerary. This wood-fired pizza joint was transformed from a former laundromat into a classic spot, complete with white-tiled counters and an Italian-built pizza oven. Pies are made with housemade mozzarella, alongside a plethora of classic and innovative toppings. One of my favorites is the St. The Ghost, made with coastal cheddar, mozzarella, parmigiano reggiano, and burnt honey. Nothing beats indulging in a slice and washing it down with a glass of beer. Netanya, Social Media Manager

 

 

 

 

5 Things You Didn’t Know About…

Anna

We work with amazing people everyday from brands to influencers and everything in between. We lovingly call them our #CookItCrew and today were checking in with our Brand Strategist, Anna Fatlowitz. We asked and she told us 5 things we didn’t know about her!

  1. I was born in Thailand and lived there until I was two. I’ve been lucky enough to go back a few times, and experience things outside of a tourist lense. I’m finally going back as an adult later this year and can’t wait!
  2. Because I grew up eating a ton of authentic Isaan (northeast region) Thai food, I am seriously so picky. Pad Thai is actually one of my least favorite dishes, and there are about two places in NYC I actually approve of: Somtum Der and Jaiya.
  3. For some reason I’ve never liked sweets, so I always skip dessert unless other people want it. I’ve even asked to replace the dessert course on prix fixe menus!
  4. My favorite cuisine is Japanese, from sushi to soba to kaiseki and everything in between. I think I started eating sushi around age five. My first omakase definitely changed my life.
  5. I’m obsessed with dogs and getting a dog. I probably follow 100+ dog accounts on Instagram.

What’s Cooking: August

chocolate chunk shortbread cookies

 

In the summertime, the last thing we want to do is turn on the oven. That said, there are some recipes we’ll gladly suffer for. These are some of our team’s favorites from the past few sultry weeks.

dining in cookbook

Well, currently my head and heart have been dedicated and devoted to Alison Roman’s Dining In. This week, I made two batches of the Salted Butter and Chocolate Chunk Shortbread, one because everyone was talking about them, and the second because…I get it, I get it, they are delicious! Jackie, Senior Account Manager

strawberry balsamic pie

There is something so quintessential about pie and summertime. Every year, I pull out Four & Twenty Blackbirds’ recipe for strawberry balsamic pie. It’s a perfect crowd pleaser! Netanya, Social Media Manager

fruit salad

I’ve been obsessed for a bit now with salads that combine fruit, tomatoes, cheese and avocado. And I have no intention of stopping. This excellent version from our girl Haley of Brewing Happiness knocked the idea out of the park by adding chunks of country bread for a new take on panzanella. Laurie, CEO + Founder

almond pesto

This time of year, basil grows like a weed in my backyard (how lucky am I?). So I’m making all sorts of pesto variations. I love Deliciously Ella’s take on pesto, made with almonds instead of pine nuts. It has a more delicate flavor than the traditional version—all the better for a light summer meal. Renae, Senior Brand Strategist

Poached Eggs

I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to learn and attempt to make poached eggs. This post and video by Lisa of Downshiftology is the perfect guide: It breaks down all the problems you could have and all the tips you’ll need. Now I can master brunch (in my pajamas)! Anna, Brand Strategist

mediterranean salmon

Salmon en papillote is a year-round staple (so easy and delicious), but we’ve been loving the Roasted Root’s Mediterranean twist. It’s incredibly flavorful and pairs well with leftover grains and leafy greens. Edie, Account Manager

 

 

5 Things You Don’t Know About…

Edie

Edie Horstman

Our #CookItCrew comprises staff, influencers, brands, agencies, designers, photographers – all the amazing people we work with. Today we’re checking in with our talented Account Manager, Edie Horstman. We asked what we don’t know about her!

5 Things You Don’t Know About Me

  1. I’m Mexican-food obsessed, and I credit my mom. In 2005, she opened a small taqueria in the Bay Area. Fast forward 13 years later, and she has five Mexican restaurants called LuLu’s. Talk about inspiring!
  2. My favorite late-night snack is a scoop (or two) of So Delicious ice cream. Any flavor.
  3. The one cookbook I’d save in a fire (God forbid!) is Oh She Glows Every Day — Angela’s recipes are delicious, satisfying, and encourage me to get creative with veggies!
  4. I love live video (weird, I know)! My secret is practicing beforehand. Notes are also key.
  5. The strangest thing in my pantry is Annie’s Cheddar Bunnies. What can I say? I’m a little kid at heart.

What’s Cooking: June 2018

tomatoes

Our favorite past time? Talking about food, of course! Our team is always discussing the latest recipe, restaurant or cookbook we’re into. Here’s our list for June…

What We’re Cooking:

  • Anything and everything that involves heirloom tomatoes.
  • Everything from Alison Roman’s “Dining In” Cookbook. Can’t get over her recipe for Crunchy Chili Oil. I put it on everything now!
  • Currently making the basil vinaigrette from What’s Gaby Cooking every week!
  • Peaches with burrata, heirloom tomatoes and basil… anything that doesn’t require the stove!
  • Soba noodles! I’m a lover of all noodles, but in the summer I prefer cold broths over hot. I love keeping it simple or adding edamame, chicken, and nori.

What We’re Into:

  • Summer herbs. For our wedding, we were gifted an herb garden seed kit from Williams Sonoma. Thankfully, my basil is flourishing. And I’ve recently potted chives, parsley, mint, and cilantro. Wish me luck!
  • Making pies! Love using all the beautiful market bounty like juicy peaches, perfectly tart cherries and plump berries.
  • Car picnics, especially before a concert at Red Rocks

Where We’re Eating:

  • Denver’s Barcelona Wine Bar. I’ve been an embarrassing number of times since they opened a few months ago — as in, the manager knows me by first and last name. Everything is amazing, including their white wine sangria and roasted cauliflower with romesco sauce.  
  • The LGBT sandwich (a Pride Month special) at The Walrus and the Hedgehog, a pop up in the Hollywood Farmer’s Market, and one of L.A.’s best caterers!