Dreaming of a Tropical New Year

Because you can always dream, right? This week’s alphatini called for something fit to a tee–and I began thinking Tangerine. Namely, the tangerine liqueur we picked up in Roatan on our last cruise (which has been far too far in the past). A Dreamsicle martini would be the easy route, but since I was thinking tropical, I figured the tangerine could use a few friends to make nice with in the glass. Tangerine Dream 1.5 oz Heavy Cream 1 oz Vanilla Vodka 1 oz Tangerine Liqueur 1/2 oz Pineapple Rum 1/4 oz Banana Liqueur garnish: citrus peel Combine all ingredients
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Tucson: My favorite foodie things – 2011

2011 wouldn’t be complete without a list of my favorite foodie things (in no particular order and I’m sure I’m forgetting some). Tucson Culinary Festival’s World Margarita  Championship – This is my favorite event during that four day culinary extravaganza. I love the margaritas and  food sampling, mingling and camaraderie among the  mixologists. Sullivan’s Steak House – Ate here for dinner and it was meaty memorable. Can we herald “dry aged?” Here the service was amazing and the steak  tasted like steak from my past. I give it a 10!  (even though it’s a chain) Elvira’s Mexican Restaurant – When
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More Appetizers Than You Can Shake a Skillet At

Have you ever sat down for a meal–with friends, family or even alone–even though you didn’t think you were all that hungry? But, somehow, after a few bites you realize you’re ravenous and finish a meal as usual? That is the power of the appetite. And appetizers exist to wake up that appetite and get you in the mood for food. As I’ve mentioned before, though, many night I’m quite happy to have lots of little things and variety over a single-entree meal. This can take some doing, however, as the preparation of many smaller bites usually outweighs the pleasure
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Santa is tired of cookies & milk

Santa is tired of cookies & milk Poor Santa, how many sugar cookies & glasses of milk can one jolly fat man actually stomach? Maybe if the milk is laced with some good bourbon or Kaluha, then the sugar cookies will be more palatable.  Or forget the sugar cookies. Maybe Rudolph and friends would like them providing the cookies don’t have xylitol. Raw carrots are suggested for the reindeer. I heard from one of the elves that not everyone serves Santa the same menu. In Britain and Australia, he is sometimes given sherry and mince pies instead. In Sweden and
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What a Way to End the Night!

Conventional wisdom suggests that Santa Claus is a devotee of milk (with cookies), hot cocoa and a certain red-canned cola. But if you ask me, after circumnavigating the globe in one night I’d want something a little stronger to take the edge off. Which is why we’re devoting the ‘S’ alphatini to the jolly dude in the red suit. Santa’s Nightcap 2 oz Vanilla Vodka 2 oz Cranberry Juice 1/2 oz  Buttershots 1/2 oz Grenadine 1/4 oz Goldschlager garnish of icing, coconut flakes and a mini-marshmallow To prepare your cocktail glass: paint the outer lip of your cocktail glass with
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Tucson: Holiday Food Gift Ideas

Foodie Gift Ideas It’s getting close and if you still don’t know what to get for some foodies on your list, consider these: Tucson Originals gift cards. One card and you can use it any of the 52 participating independent restaurants.  You can buy these cards at Feast or Pastiche. Many of the restaurants – Tucson Originals – and others have deals that when you buy $50 or $100 worth of gift cards, you also get a bonus of $20 for yourself. Can’t beat that. It pays to have a generosity of spirit. At Xoom Juice, when you buy a
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If You’re Looking for a Christmas Breakfast Idea…

This waffle recipe I was sent, recently, might be one to try. As it happens, I was making up my Christmas list when a recent submission came in and it got me to thinking: I love waffles but haven’t owned a waffle iron in years. (I think I gave Mom’s old waffle iron to my brother at least 5 years ago.) After reading Rose Levy Beranbaum’s “Orange Waffles with Burst of Cranberry Topping”, an iron went on my list. Normally I’m not one to pass along someone else’s recipe without testing it myself (especially since it’s in service of promoting an appliance/manufacturer
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Easy chicken soup recipe using Chimichurri rice

I wonder how many chicken soup recipes there are? I make a version of chicken soup almost every week in the winter and no two versions are ever the same. Routine is not my thing. For this particular version you will probably need to be near a Trader Joe’s because many of the products come from there and I don’t know where else to buy them, for instance, like the Chimichurri rice. Recipe 1 carton chicken broth 1 cup water 1 packet of chicken broth mix (the packet would make 1 cup) 3 chicken thighs (frozen or thawed) or whatever
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Noah’s Pudding

My writing takes me to the most amazing places. The Foundation for Inter-Cultural Dialogue – http://www.fid-az.org – invited me to be a judge at their Noah’s Pudding contest. I had never heard of Noah’s Pudding, also called Ashure. So I had to do a little research. Noah’s pudding gets its name from the dish Noah made when the Ark landed on Mt. Ararat after the Great Flood. There was very little food left, so everyone gathered together what they had and created a pudding: nuts, grains, beans, fruit….whatever was at hand. In modern times, in Turkey and throughout the Middle
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Slip Into Something More Raspberry

What, no one decided to take up the Quest cocktail challenge? That’s too bad! Maybe this week’s cocktail will be better suited for you, then, and we’ll keep it short and sweet, to boot! It’s the holidays, after all, and everyone seems to be in a hurry. Chefs love to tell stories–I don’t know, must come with the job–and our chefs at school were no exception. One (who also happened to be an English major before he became a chef) loved to tell us all the odd things they’d come up with to round out the usual cocktail and buffet offerings.
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