Category: Foodies

Noshing at Nosh Eatery & Wine Bar

Nosh Eatery & Wine BarWe had the pleasure of visiting Nosh Eatery & Wine Bar last week, which is the brand new iteration of the space formerly known as Betty’s Nosh, at 6685 N Beardsley Road, off the Loop 101 in Glendale, AZ. Nosh lacks the signature mushroom bar feature I loved when it was Betty’s, which is good news for the mushroom haters but bad news for us fungi enthusiasts. The good news for us all is the new owners still offer a great happy hour, and on Thursdays they still feature their complimentary wine tasting.

Last week Nosh’s wine tasting featured a Napa pinot gris from Three Pears, and while I don’t identify as a pinot gris fan, I found it to be delicious! The first sip might have been just okay, but the manager that night, Marty, already knew how biased I am against white wines and he coached me to pay attention to my second and third sips. It was so worth the investment in my patience!

The second choice that night, the red wine, was a Paso Robles cabernet sauvignon from Foxglove. It lacked the boldness of the big Napa cabs I’m used to, but it was well-rounded and certainly enjoyable.

When we taste new wines at a tasting, we get precious few sips and not much time to aerate them. Because of this I have a little broader range of what tastes acceptable enough to me to want to try again.  My litmus test is to ask myself after each sampling, “would I drink this again on purpose?” The answer for both of these wines is an absolute YES! Especially given such reasonable price points (~$20/bottle).

Nosh Eatery & Wine BarAs for the “nosh”, on this occasion I chose from the starter menu and enjoyed the shrimp eggrolls. With shrimp, cream cheese and jalapeño, it’s a little calorie splurge for me but they were so tasty and satisfying! My only disappointment of the evening was when I saw their famous mushroom bar is no longer. Angry Shrimp stuffed mushrooms, chicken Alfredo stuffed mushrooms, green chile chicken stuffed mushrooms, Byriani stuffed mushrooms… Sigh, I miss all those! Though Nosh no longer offers their virtual cornucopia of stuffed mushrooms, they do still have some mushrooms on the menu in the form of starters.

With atmosphere of a wine bar and patio seating, Nosh Eatery & Wine Bar is definitely worth checking out! Give them a try for your next business lunch, date night or girl’s night out. Keep calm and nosh on!

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Party Planning: Best Chip Dip Recipe Ever!

dip recipe

Much to George Costanza’s dismay, “double dipping” has indeed shown to increase germs in your bowl of dip by a factor of 1,000*. So long as that number doesn’t scare you, then boy, do I have a recipe for you!

*We’re guessing. Sounds about right. My degree is in Political Science, which means I’m practically a trustworthy scientist anyway.

Ripe, creamy avocado. That bite of fresh garlic. The savory spiciness of jalapeño sour cream. The brightness of the lime juice–yum! This cool but spicy avocado dip recipe is low in cost and makes party-sized quantities, plus is great for dipping chips, veggies, any bite-sized Mexican finger food and pairs great with the Mexican beer of your choice.

I used to make another version of this tasty dip, but since discovering Zesty Jalepeño Sour Cream from Shamrock Farms I am convinced this is the best iteration of my recipe so far! This dip is a new regular at all my parties, including my Super Bowl party and Cinco de Mayo extravaganza (to be honest, that may very well just consist of me, some taquitos and this dip recipe). This recipe is also my submission to the Shamrock Farms Football Food Face-Off Contest, and I encourage you to enter your own recipe for a chance to win too!

Toss all of this into your food processor and pulse for 20 seconds:

  1. Two avocados (avocado prep tip here)
  2. Two cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated on a microplane
  3. The juice of one lime (lime juicing tip here)
  4. Half of one bunch cilantro, or more if you love cilantro (some stems are fine)
  5. 2/3 of a container of Shamrock Farms Zesty Jalapeño Sour Cream
  6. A few pinches of kosher salt

Spicy Avocado Cilantro Jalapeno DipThese quantities are measured for a full sized food processor. If you have a half sized food processor, or one of those cute little choppers, of course reduce the quantity of ingredients and mix the batches together. I trust you. Do your thing.

The spice of this dip depends on Shamrock Farms Zesty Jalapeño Sour Cream. This adds a little spice to the dip, which is mild enough to please most people. If you’re like me and prefer super spicy food, feel free to add one half or one whole fresh jalapeño to the food processor with your other ingredients.

Enjoy!

dip recipe

 

Oreo Nutella Wine Cupcake Recipe!

No. Really. We have a recipe for Oreo Nutella Wine Cupcakes! This little gem came to us from Illumination PR and their client Nuvino. We tried to secure a sample of Nuvino, but one wasn’t available. We still think the recipe is pretty cool and would make for some good content… so here it is! This isn’t a paid endorsement or brand recommendation… so feel free to substitute with your favorite *red wine*!

Ingredients:
For the cupcakes:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup of your favorite Red Blend Wine
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup Nutella
  • 10 Oreos
For the filling:
  • ½ cup Nutella
  • 5 Oreos
For the frosting:
  • 1 cup red wine, any kind you like
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • salt, to taste

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Instructions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 10 muffin cups with cupcake liners. Set aside.
  2. The cupcakes: In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugars together until fluffy. Add the egg and beat to combine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla extract. Stir in Nutella and Nuvino’s Red Blend until evenly combined. Slowly add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Place an Oreo cookie on the bottom of each cupcake liner. Pour batter over each Oreo cookie and fill each cupcake liner about ¾ of the way full. Bake the cupcakes for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. The filling: In a ziplock bag, place the Oreos and use a mallet to crush the cookies into small pieces. In a small bowl, combine Nutella with crushed Oreos. Set aside.
  4. The frosting: In a small saucepan, combine Nuvino’s Red Blend and sugar. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until sugar dissolves and wine comes to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes (until the liquid is reduced to about ¼ cup or a light syrup texture). Let to cool.
  5. Beat the butter until until smooth and creamy. Slowly add in powdered sugar (1/2 cup at a time), vanilla, and ¼ cup of prepared wine syrup. Beat until no lumps remain. Taste the frosting and add salt to cut the sweetness, if you prefer.
  6. Assembling the cupcakes: Cut out the center of each cupcake with a sharp knife. Fill the cupcakes with Nutella & Oreo filling. Transfer the frosting to a piping bag fitted with a decorative tip. Pipe frosting into a swirl on each cupcake. Enjoy!

St. Francis Restaurant Phoenix

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Brunch at St. Francis in Central Phoenix is ridiculous. In an amazing kind of way! The portions are generous and the flavors are on point. We started our culinary adventure with the Cinnamon Roll and Caramel Sauce. WOW! It’s HUGE! We were digging in before I realized we hadn’t taken a picture of it! But trust me… It’s *delicious* and a must have!

We chased it down with a Bloody Mary. It’s not really Brunch if you don’t have a Bloody Mary! We ordered ours spicy and it didn’t disappoint! Made with Finlandia Vodka, a mix of house spices and fresh citrus… you can’t go wrong.

For our main Brunch course… I decided on the Housemade Biscuit- with Schreiner’s fennel sausage and fried eggs. It’s not my mama’s biscuits and gravy, but it was delicious in its own special way! I’m super picky when it comes to biscuits and gravy. I’m confident in saying that the Housemade Biscuit at St. Francis rivals any I’ve had. It’s rustic, yet refined. The sausage gravy was creamy. Decadent. Not greasy. And not overly salty, as you often find in this dish. I love this dish because it had everything I crave at breakfast- eggs, carbs, meat and creamy gravy as a bonus!

My counterpart ordered the Mushroom Omelette, but prefers all egg whites. That’s not a problem at St. Francis. Just ask! It comes smothered in a tasty combination of braised leeks, roasted mushrooms, thyme and goat cheese. It also comes with a nice piece of homemade bread. Yum! Let’s talk flavor. One word. Savory! If you enjoy eating on the lighter side but don’t want to miss out on flavor… this is your dish!

Before we left… we ordered the signature Brick Oven Baguette to go. At only $3- it’s a no brainer. We lightly warmed it up and enjoyed it with our dinner at home that evening!

St. Francis sources their ingredients from the local farming community. This is something we truly love about them. The food is fresh and we’re supporting our neighbors by eating local. The heart of St. Francis is their brick, wood burning oven. It’s this authentic method of cooking and freshly sourced ingredients, that keep us coming back to St. Francis. Try them!