NYC Hot Sauce Expo 2017

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Turkey Bolognese with Smokehaus Blues

Pin It Turkey Bolognese with Born to Hula Smokehaus Blues Hot Sauce

Turkey Bolognese with Born to Hula Smokehaus Blues Hot Sauce
I love making a hearty bolognese and for this quick, under 30 minute bolognese dinner, I use organic ground turkey since it is lean and tastes great when infused with the right amount of spices. I had 2 tablespoons left of Born to Hula Smokehaus Blues Hot Sauce, and added it to my sauce. The pleasant yet medium heat of Smokehaus Blues highlights the bolognese, and adds a welcome touch of smokey flavor that does not overpower. Smokehaus Blues ingredients are: diced tomatoes (diced, tomato juice, salt), distilled vinegar, cayenne pepper, roasted garlic, Chipotle Chile, onion and lime juice. The fresh taste of Smokehaus Blues compliments the robust flavor profile, and with each bite you get a zesty kick from the Chipotle that lingers and makes you crave more. Smokehaus Blues is a versatile sauce and works great as an addition to many recipes. Allen consumed most of the bottle on pizza, eggs, turkey burgers, and breakfast burritos. Two Frys highly recommend Born to Hula Smokehaus Blues Hot Sauce so see link below to order a bottle or two or three.

Turkey Bolognese and Garlic Bread

Ingredients
1 lb. Organic Ground Turkey

1 lb. Spaghetti (I use Barilla Spaghetti)

1 24 oz. Pasta Sauce Jar (I use Barilla or make homemade if you have time)

1 teaspoon Tomato Paste

2 tablespoons Born to Hula Smokehaus Blues Hot Sauce

3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 Yellow Onion, chopped

4-5 Garlic Cloves, minced

Coarse Salt

Cracked Black Pepper

1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning

Bunch fresh Parsley, roughly chopped

1 Bay Leaf

1 cup Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

Grated Parmesan Cheese

Ground Turkey cooking

Directions
Roughly chop a bunch of parsley; set aside.

With a skillet on medium heat, add 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil and when hot add ground turkey, season with salt, pepper and Italian seasoning; add onions and bay leaf.

Cover and cook for about 7 minutes stirring often, and then add garlic. Continue cooking.

After 5 minutes add pasta sauce, tomato paste, and Born to Hula Smokehaus Blues Hot Sauce. Stir, cover, and simmer on low heat for about 10 minutes.

Sauce simmering
To make the spaghetti bring a large pot of water to boil.

Once the water boils add coarse salt and 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil.

Add the spaghetti and cook to Al Dente, according to box directions.

Before draining spaghetti, reserve about 3/4 cup of starchy pasta water.

Drain spaghetti and return to pot.

Adding Born to Hula Smokehaus Blue to my sauce
Remove bay leaf and add turkey bolognese in skillet to pasta pot, then the reserved pasta water, and stir.

Add shredded Mozzarella cheese and grated Parmesan cheese and combine.

Add parsley and combine.

Add more Parmesan cheese over the top and serve with garlic bread if desired.

To order Born to Hula Smokehaus Blues Hot Sauce and other fine products, visit:
http://borntohula.com/

"Like" Born to Hula Hot Sauce on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/BTH52

-Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Olón - Atlantic City Restaurant Week

Pin It Olón - Atlantic City Restaurant Week

Allen with his pork sandwich and fries
I am loving the decor
Menu for Atlantic City Restaurant Week
Chef Jose Garces grand opening of Olón was March 4, and we were there for lunch a few days later, March 7 to experience the Atlantic City Restaurant Week lunch menu. The name Olón (pronounced Ō-lon) is inspired by the beach town of Olón, Ecuador. This predominantly seafood oriented restaurant featuring Chef Garces' family recipes is an inviting beach-like experience with gorgeous decor, and cabanas (see picture) and out the windows, a sweeping view of the ocean and the Atlantic City boardwalk.

Guacamole with Plantain and Taro Chips
Close-up of Guacamole
Close-up of Plantain and Taro Chips
My Sofrito Salsa with Plantain and Taro Chips
As you enter Olón, there is a ceviche bar and lounge that is spectacular. The restaurant is large and the natural light and warm and open design concept brings you to the beach. There is even an outdoor deck with views of the beach to dine in once warm weather arrives.

My fish sandwich and fries
Close-up of my fish sandwich and slaw
My fries - yummy!

The lunch menu featured the following:
(Choose 1)
Guacamole - Avocado, Roasted Jalapeño, Cojita Cheese, Taro Chips

Sofrito Salsa - Plantain and Taro Chips

Cheese Empanada - Ricotta, Mozzarella

(Choose 1)
Chicken Sandwich - Gilled chicken, Bacon, Avocado, Huancaina Sauce, Tomato

Pork Sandwich - Pickled Jalapeño, Roasted Onions, Cilantro Mayo

Fish Sandwich - Yuzu Tartar Sauce, Butter Lettuce, Cabbage & Red Onion Slaw

(Choose 1)
Coconut Parfait - Mango Pearls, Pistachio Cream

Flan - Spiced Caramel Custard

Allen's pork sandwich and fries
Close-up of Allen's pork sandwich
Allen ordered the guacamole, pork sandwich and coconut parfait for dessert. The guacamole was spicy and so fresh tasting and the gourmet plantain and taro chips were thinly sliced and complimented the guacamole. The pork sandwich was tasty and the kick from the pickled jalapeños brought all the flavors together into a superb sandwich. The cilantro mayo complimented the bold pork seasoning. The coconut parfait brought you to the beach with lovely summer flavors of mango and coconut.

My flan
Allen's lovely coconut parfait
Close-up of Allen's coconut parfait
I ordered the sofrito salsa, fish sandwich and flan. The sofrito salsa was seasoned beautifully, and I loved the crunch of the plantain and taro chips. Each bite of the fish sandwich was super yummy with a crunch from the cabbage and red onion slaw, and a flavorful and creamy yuzu tartar sauce to top it off. The fries were seasoned and sliced thin and fried to perfection. The flan was refreshing and complimented the spiced caramel sauce laden over the top and all around the sides of the plate.

Nice restaurant logo
Decor is so nice and inviting
Love the cabana style dining area and the floors
This was a wonderful eating experience and everything we ate was superb. The flavors were bold, bright and the ingredients meshed perfectly. The food was a sublime symmetry of ingredients laden with the right amount of spices and flavors. The staff and waitress were friendly, and two managers came to our table and asked us how we were enjoying the food. We plan to return for dinner, and hope to dine outside in the deck next time we visit Tropicana.

Beachy feel, pretty chairs and tables
Cool floors

For further information, please visit:
Olón -
http://olonrestaurant.com/

Olón at Tropicana -
https://tropicana.net/dining/fine-dining/olon/

-Sophia and Allen/Two Frys

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Buca di Beppo - Atlantic City Restaurant Week

Pin It Buca di Beppo - Atlantic City Restaurant Week

Allen with his Spaghetti and Meatballs
Me with my Spaghetti and Meatballs
Allen and I went to Atlantic City a few days for restaurant week, and to getaway from concrete city for some fun and relaxation. On Monday, March 6, we had lunch at Bally's Italian restaurant, Buca di Beppo. This Italian family food style restaurant featuring Jersey native Chef Edwin Neris, offers a diverse menu and everything looks so yummy. For restaurant week, participating restaurants offer select menu items with lunch costing $15.17 and dinner $33.17 per person. It is a real value and a great way to try different restaurants in Atlantic City.

Buca di Beppo Restaurant Week Menu
Warm bread and for dipping, balsamic vinegar and olive oil
Caesar Salad

The menu offered the following to select from:
Appetizers (choice of one)
Caesar Salad - Romaine hearts tossed in our signature Caesar dressing with roasted garlic croutons and Parmesan

Spaghetti and Meatballs
Check out this meatball, pure perfection!
Entrees (choice of one)
Prosciutto Stuffed Chicken - Stuffed with mozzarella and prosciutto, served with our homemade marinara and pesto cream sauces and spaghetti marinara

Salmon Sorrento - Lemon butter sauce, tomatoes and capers, served with broccoli

Spaghetti with Meatballs - Our famous half-pound meatballs and spaghetti with homemade marinara sauce

Cannoli's

Dessert
Mini Chocolate Chip Cannoli's - Crispy shells stuffed to order with a sweet, cannoli cream filling mixed with chocolate chips, served over a drizzle of our chocolate sauce.

Buca di Beppo
We both ordered the same thing, caesar salad, spaghetti with meatballs, and mini chocolate chip cannoli's and loved everything we ate. We were first brought a warm bread basket with olive oil and balsamic vinegar to dip into, and I had to control myself from eating it all since I love bread so much. The dinning room features an open concept dining space, very clean and nice decor on the walls, ample sized dining tables and comfortable seating. The staff and waiter were all friendly and professional.

Allen pictured by a cool Buca di Beppo cans display
The caesar salad was tasty and just the right size, and the spaghetti and meatballs was so satisfying with al dente pasta just as we prefer it. The 1/2 pound meatball was tender and full of flavor, and one of the best we ever had. The marinara sauce was so good, a little sweet and savory. This was the perfect balance of a traditionally prepared Italian dish and we appreciate that. The cannoli's were great with the perfect crunch and a rich creamy center with mini chocolate chips, and a delectable culmination to an amazing meal.

We really loved the food and overall had a wonderful experience eating here, and will return to Buca di Beppo next time we visit Atlantic City.

For further information, please visit:
Buca di Beppo:
http://www.bucadibeppo.com/restaurants/nj/atlantic-city/

Buca di Beppo, Bally's page:
https://www.caesars.com/ballys-ac/restaurants/buca-di-beppo#.WMVUNtQrKt8

-Sophia and Allen/Two Frys

Monday, February 20, 2017

Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Pin It Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
I baked a Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting for Allen on Valentine's Day. I came across the recipe on Pinterest (see link below) and wanted to try a different recipe than the red velvet one I have been making for several years. I am so glad I tried a new recipe because this cake is so amazing. It is moist and has a soft crumb and the combo of buttermilk, oil, vinegar, vanilla and cocoa powder make it the special cake it is. The cream cheese frosting is so great, and I fully recommend this recipe. If you love red velvet cake, you should give this recipe a try. I did not change a thing, and followed the recipe as directed. Read all the tips in the original recipe as they are very informative.

Perfect slice of Red Velvet Cake 
Yummy slice

Ingredients
Cake
3 cups Cake Flour

1 teaspoon Baking Soda

2 tablespoons Unsweetened Cocoa Powder

1/2 teaspoon Coarse Salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) Unsalted Butter, softened

2 cups Granulated Sugar

1 cup Vegetable Oil

4 large Eggs, separated

1 and 1/2 tablespoons Pure Vanilla Extract

1 teaspoon Distilled White Vinegar

AmeriColor Gel Paste Food Color, Super Red

1 cup Buttermilk

Slice and cake in background
Heart-shaped Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Cream Cheese Frosting
16 ounces Cream Cheese, softened

1/2 cup Unsalted Butter, softened

4 cups Confectioners'/Powdered Sugar

1/2 teaspoon Coarse Salt

2-3 tablespoons Whole Milk

2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract

Cake perfection
Cake batter in heart-shaped pans ready to go in oven

Directions
Heat oven to 350°F.

Spray cake pans or lighlty butter/flour 2, 9" cake pans. I used 2 Wilton heart-shape pans; set aside.

Separate eggs: yolks in one bowl, and egg whites in another bowl; set aside.

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cocoa powder, and salt together with a whisk; set aside.

Using a hand held or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute.

Add sugar and beat on high speed, 2 minutes.

Scrape sides of bowl with a spatula and mix again, 5-10 seconds.

Add vegetable oil and beat on high, 2 minutes.

Add egg yolks, and vanilla extract and combine on medium speed just until incorporated.

Scrape sides of bowl and mix for 5-10 seconds.

On low speed, add distilled white vinegar, and super red gel paste food color (add a little at a time until you reach desired color).

With mixer on low speed, add flour mixture alternating with the buttermilk until incorporated.

Whisk or beat egg whites until thick and foamy, 2-3 minutes and fold into cake batter with spatula until incorporated.

Pour batter into cake pans, 2/3 full.

Bake for 30-32 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. My cake baked in 30 minutes.

Remove from oven and cool in pans for 30 minutes, and then invert onto a wire rack to cool completely.

While the cake is cooling make the cream cheese frosting.

Cake just baked, cooling on wire rack
Cake crumbs to decorate over frosting
On medium speed using a hand held or stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and butter until smooth, about 2 minutes.

Add the confectioners’ sugar, salt, and 2 tablespoons of milk and beat for 2 minutes.

On high speed, add vanilla extract and 1 more tablespoon of milk if needed to thin out, and beat on high for 1 minute.

Slice the tops of the cakes with a serrated knife to even each layer, and to use as crumbs to decorate over the frosting.

Place first cake layer on cake stand or plate, and cover with cream cheese frosting.

Add second cake layer on top and frost cake, and add crumbs as desired.

Place cake in fridge to set.

Cover and keep in fridge covered for 5-7 days.

For the Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe visit, Sally's Baking Addiction:
http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2015/02/09/red-velvet-layer-cake-with-cream-cheese-frosting/

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies

Pin It Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies with pretty sugar decorations
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
This past weekend was full of  hearts, literally in cookie form. Two days after decorating cookies with my sister-in-law, I baked dark chocolate sugar cookies for Valentine's Day gifts, and spent the day decorating them all. The cookies taste so rich from the dark chocolate, and have a light crisp texture when you first bite into them, and the inside is soft and chewy. The cookies are pure decadence! The important thing for this recipe is to purchase a quality dark chocolate cocoa powder because it really brings out the richness of the chocolate flavor. I ordered an imported one from France on Amazon, and it was expensive but spending a few extra bucks paid off.

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies - love the XO and love cutters 
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Yield: 5 1/2 Dozen Cookies (depending on size)

Ingredients
6 cups King Arthur All Purpose Flour, sifted

1 1/4 cups Dark Cocoa Powder

2 cups Granulated Sugar

1 cup Light Brown Sugar, lightly packed

1 teaspoon Coarse Salt

2 cups (4 sticks) Unsalted Butter, softened

3 Eggs, cold

2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Directions
Whisk together flour, cocoa powder and salt; set aside.

Cream butter and sugars in a hand held mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment on medium speed; 1-2 minutes. Do not overmix.

Scrape sides of bowl with spatula and mix for 5 seconds.

Add eggs one at a time, mix until incorporated. Scrape sides of bowl and mix for 5 seconds.

Add vanilla extract and mix on low until incorporated, about 10-15 seconds.

With mixer on low speed, slowly add flour mixture and incorporate. Place a kitchen towel or paper towel over the mixer and hold it to prevent flour going all over your counter.

The dough is ready when it begins to clump around paddle attachment.

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Cut in half and roll dough into 2 balls, cover with plastic wrap, and chill in fridge for 1-2 hours or overnight.

Take half of the dough at a time to roll, leaving unused dough covered with plastic wrap in fridge until ready to use.

Heat oven to 325° F.

Use two sheets of parchment paper with dough in between and roll with rolling pin until desired thickness is reached. You do not have to add cocoa powder to work surface or cookie cutters using this rolling technique.

In fact, too much cocoa powder can result in a dry cookie so do not use it.

Make shapes with cutters and place onto cookies sheets lined with parchment paper.

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Place cookie sheets in freezer for 10-15 minutes. The cookies hold their shape when you do this.

Bake 12-15 minutes or until the edges have slightly browned. My cookies baked in 13 minutes.

Wait 5 minutes before transferring cookies on cooling racks to complete cooling.

Decorate once cookies cool completely.

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies - still learning marbling technique
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies

Large Batch Royal Icing
Ingredients
8 Egg Whites

8 teaspoons Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed

12 cups Powdered/Confectioners' Sugar, sifted

1 tablespoon Clear Vanilla Extract

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies - Pretty Mini Hearts
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies

Directions
In a large bowl, sift powdered sugar, set aside.

In a bowl, add egg whites.

In a bowl, whisk together the egg whites and lemon juice.

Transfer to stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment and mix on high for 1-2 minutes.

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Add vanilla extract and mix for 5-10 seconds.

With mixer speed on low, slowly add sifted sugar and beat on low until smooth.

If needed, you may add 1 teaspoon of water at a time until you reach the right consistency. Watch the Joy of Baking (link at the end) video for both Flooding Consistency and Piping Consistency Royal Icing. If you prefer a recipe using Meringue Powder, it is also available at this link.

I separated the icing in plastic containers with lids according to how many different colors needed for tinting.

I used AmeriColor Soft Gel Paste Food Color in Super White, Super Red, Super Black, and Pink. Use 1-2 drops at a time until you reach the color desired.

Keep the containers covered until you are ready to color.

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies
I transferred the icing immediately into squeeze bottles using a funnel to prevent spilling.

If the royal icing hardens due to air exposure, use a spray bottle filled with room temperature water, and spray once or twice and shake bottle well holding the tip with your finger. Test the icing consistency on a paper towel before decorating the cookie.

I outlined the cookies first, waited 1/2 hour and then filled them one at a time.

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies - Pretty little hearts all over the cookies
Use a paintbrush or cookie stick to reach edges, and use tip of cookie stick or a toothpick to pop any air bubbles.

Add sprinkles, confetti, sugar pearls, dragees, etc... over wet icing. I also used some pretty hearts and xo decorations on some of the cookies.

If you want to write over the royal icing, let it dry first and then apply over the icing.

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies

Dark Chocolate Heart Cookies - Heart and XO sugar decorations
I used Wilton's Scribe Tool to make the hearts and marbling designs on the cookies.

Let cookies dry overnight. This is essential so the icing does not stick together when you stack them or place in cookie tins for gifts.

If you are baking and it is humid, you may need more time for the cookies to dry.

For the Dark Chocolate Sugar Cookie Recipe, visit Sweetapolita:
http://sweetapolita.com/2012/11/the-perfect-dark-chocolate-sugar-cookies/

For the Royal Icing Recipe and Video Tutorial, visit Joy of Baking:
http://www.joyofbaking.com/RoyalIcing.html

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys