Tomatillo-Cilantro-Avocado Sauce

I made a black bean and chorizo dish yesterday, and wanted to add a “fresh” component to it. My husband and I have both used tomatillos in dishes we’ve cooked recently, because it’s an ingredient we’d never used before and we challenged ourselves to do so. This sauce would be good on just about any…

Dried Black Beans

Inspired by my Rick Bayless cookbook on Mexican cooking, I decided to make a black bean and chorizo dish (see previous post on making chorizo!). While most recipes work just fine using canned black beans that have been drained and rinsed, I wanted to make my own from dried beans. While many (most?) recipes suggest…

Easy, Make Your Own Chorizo

I wanted to use chorizo in a black bean dish this weekend, and all I could find was the dried kind; the kind that you slice like pepperoni. I wanted fresher chorizo, so I decided to make my own (minus the casings!)  In doing a little research, I learned that there are distinct differences between…

Pistachio Parmigiano Basil Pesto

We love a good pesto. Inspired today by a stroll through a great local farmer’s market, and because we were able to buy a HUGE bunch of fresh basil for $2.00, I decided to make some pesto today. I have had a delicious pesto made by a local “Pesto Diva” that included pistachios rather than the…

Pantry Raid

A well-stocked pantry is a thing of beauty. Grant and I love to whip up dishes with no recipe, using what we have on hand to guide us. Having a well-stocked source of ingredients certainly lends itself to creativity in the kitchen! I hunted for a few online resources for a list of components for…

Johnnie Walker Gold Label, 18 yo., $70

Johnnie Walker produces some of the world’s best and most acclaimed blended Scotches.  The Black Label is the world’s top selling blended Scotch, and for about $40 per bottle, offers a nice every day dram on par with many single malts (review to come).  The Gold Label was created to celebrate the centenary of the…

Jim Beam White, $10

  The bottle crows “the world’s finest bourbon.” Since this is only the second bourbon I’ve reviewed, the smart money would bet that I don’t have enough experience to dispute such a claim.  Dead wrong. Unfortunately my first Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey was Evan Williams Black, a staggeringly complex drink for the price.  Jim Beam…