Overnight Oatmeal- don’t judge me

As I’ve widely established, breakfast isn’t my thing. But, as hunger is also not a good look on me (glaring, anger, hatred, passive aggression, aggressive aggression), I have learned that I have to eat something pretty hearty in the morning to avoid homicide and heartbreak. Like a true celeb (or person who likes to have good digestion), I start the day with lemon water. Also don’t judge me for this, it works! I’ve even started putting in some apple cider vinegar because I’ve been really yoga-ing it up lately. Anyway, after my hippie juice is finished, I eat breakfast, and lately it’s been overnight oats.

Why? Firstly, oatmeal is awesome and can even be savory and secondly it keeps me FULL until lunch, so I don’t start finishing jars of artichokes and 5-pound sirloin equivalents of beef jerky at 11:30.

The night before, I use this recipe from Buzzfeed (I know), and, as my mother likes to say, “Bob’s your uncle and Fanny’s your aunt”. Which, from my understanding, means and there you have it.

Tart Cherry Overnight Oats
Makes 1 serving

INGREDIENTS

⅓ cup rolled oats (Men: ½ cup rolled oats)
¾ cup plain, 2% Greek yogurt (Men: 1 cup plain, 2% Greek yogurt) [0% Fage works for me]
⅓ cup unsweetened almond milk
1 teaspoon honey [I skip this and use Maple Syrup because Hello…]
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon dried tart cherries (no sugar added)
10 raw almonds (Men: 20 almonds), chopped [nixed this because I’m already nutty HA]

PREPARATION

Combine all ingredients except the almonds in a small airtight container. Stir together, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
When the oats are ready, garnish with the chopped almonds [if you want to], and serve cold.

Birthday Season = Cake Season


When it comes to birthdays, a homemade cake is non-negotiable. With my brother and sister-in-law’s days of birth arriving in rapid succession, I spent some quality time with the hand mixer. I let my sister in law choose her flavor (red velvet), as my brother has had the same favorite cake since…forever. Interesting fun fact about my brother’s cake, it’s an orange cake from a family cookbook we’ve had sine the 1970s (my dad gave it to my mum back back back in the day.) I had to convert everything into standard measurement, but as usual, it was worth it. I remember my mum making this cake all throughout my childhood, and I love baking it today.

Orange Cream Gâteau from the Hamlyn All Colour Cookbook, 1978 Edition
*note: I’m doubling the recipe, because I found that it was not enough for 2 9-inch cakes
1 cup flour
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup white sugar
4 eggs, lightly beaten
2 oranges
For Buttercream:
1 cup butter
2 cup confectioner’s sugar, sifted

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cream fat and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Stir the flour, baking powder and salt together, then grate the rind from the orange, and fold in with the dry ingredient. [Combine the wet and dry ingredients–this step is missing in the original recipe!] Divide mixture evenly between 2 well greased [9-inch baking rounds]. Bake in the center of the oven for 25-30 minutes. Turn out and cool on a wire tray.

Make the buttercream: Beat the butter until soft and creamy. Add the sifted confectioner’s sugar a little at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the juice from the orange before all of the sugar has been incorporated.
Sandwich the cake together with the buttercream. Coat the sides and top, swirling decoratively.

I chose to decorate with some yellow sprinkles and chocolate pieces, all in the letter “I” for my brother!

My sister in law is a chocoholic, so I was pretty surprised when she requested red velvet cake. I used a New York Times recipe I’d just seen, and it came out pretty perfect. They paired the cake with an Ermine icing, but I just went with regular buttercream. The yellow sprinkles look a little weird here…

  • ½ cup /113 grams butter, at room temperature, plus 2 tablespoons to prepare pans
  • 3 tablespoons/22 grams cocoa powder, divided
  • 1 ½ cups/300 grams sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons/10 milliliters vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons/30 milliliters red food coloring
  • 1 teaspoon/6 grams salt
  • 1 teaspoon/5 grams baking soda
  • 2 ½ cups/320 grams flour, sifted
  • 1 cup/236 milliliters whole buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon/15 milliliters vinegar
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare three 9-inch cake pans by buttering lightly and sprinkling with 1 tablespoon sifted cocoa powder, tapping pans to coat and discarding extra cocoa.
  2. Cream butter and sugar together. Add eggs one at a time and beat vigorously until each is incorporated. Mix in vanilla.
  3. In a separate bowl, make a paste of the remaining 2 tablespoons cocoa and the food coloring. Blend into butter mixture.
  4. Sift together remaining dry ingredients. Alternating in 2 batches each, add dry ingredients and buttermilk to the butter mixture. In the last batch of buttermilk, mix in the vinegar before adding to the batter. Mix until blended.
  5. Divide batter among 3 pans and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes. Cool on a rack completely. (Can also be made in 2 cake pans.)
  6. To assemble, remove 1 cake from its pan and place flat side down on a serving platter. Drop about 1 cup of icing onto cake and, using a flat spatula, spread evenly over top. Remove the second cake from its pan. Place flat side down on top of first layer. Use remaining frosting to cover top and sides of cake.

A First Timer’s Pasta Night

Some pretty exciting things have happened to those closest to me, so I wanted to celebrate by using our brand-new hand crank pasta maker. Embarrassingly enough, this was my first time making pasta, and after one egg-yolk eggsplosion (apparently when you make a well in the flour, it’s got to go deep), it was actually relatively smooth sailing. As per the Frankie’s Spuntino book, I kneaded the dough for 8 minutes straight (whew!), then let it rest before rolling it out.

We cranked and cranked, and produced some pretty decent (albeit very thin) noodles. After some time unfurling the noodles, I whipped them up with a favorite River Café recipe of peas, prosciutto and lots of butter and Parmesan. Now, to resist the urge for homemade pasta every weeknight.

Lunch at Momofuku CCDC

As a longtime East Village resident, I’m no stranger to David Chang’s Momofuku empire. I’ve had rotisserie duck lunches at Ssam bar many a time, ramen at noodle bar, LOTS of corn cookies at Milk Bar and drinks at Booker & Dax and Ma Pêche. In my DC hiatus, I haven’t visited newly minted Fuku and Nishi, but I did get to try David Chang’s new Momofuku empire here in Washington.

The shrimp Louie is a must get (we actually ordered two).The thin slices of jalapeño cut through the richness of the Russian dressing. 

I’d only had the Momofuku pork buns before, but the mushroom version certainly delivered a lovely hit of umami. 

We also ordered the shrimp buns–a thick patty coated with a spicy-creamy sauce in their fluffy buns. I actually preferred the mushroom, strangely enough, but the shrimp was terrific as well.

The chilled spicy noodles were studded with Szechuan sausage and crunchy candied cashews. I found them a tad over-oily, but the noodles were springy and satisfying nonetheless.

A repeat visit will be necessary, for sure, before I move back to the home of the Momo empire!

Momofuku CCDC
1090 I Street
Washington, DC 20001

Tewari Bros, Mumbai

I’m not sure if I’ve admitted this on here yet, but Indian food isn’t really my thing. If i have admitted it before, let’s pretend that this is a totally new admission and you’re both shocked and intrigued. “But why?” you think, “how can a food writer who thinks all day–almost entirely–about eating reject the culinary stylings of her ancestors?” Firstly, don’t put me in a box, but secondly, it’s complicated. (I’m aware that sounded like a breakup.)

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