Archive | April, 2014

More on the Grill: Lamb + Homemade Tzatziki

21 Apr

Give up red meat for Lent? Well, with the passing of Easter yesterday you can now thoroughly enjoy this recipe guilt-free.  I’m a huge lamb fan, and it’s surprisingly hard to come by in your average grocery store.  When the craving hit, I knew I was going to have to bite the bullet and walk to the Whole Foods meat department.  To my delight, they were having a sale and I bought a pound of butterflied lamb leg for $8.99 (Score!).

Beautiful, isn’t it?

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Set the oven to 350 degrees in preparation for the brussel sprouts.  Thoroughly season the lamb with salt, pepper, garlic, and any other grill seasoning mix you have on hand.  Throw on the grill on high heat.  While your lamb is sizzling, whip up this super easy tzatziki recipe.  I found this one in a recipe book given to me a while back. All you need is 1 single size 2% plain greek yogurt, a cucumber, minced garlic, lemon juice, and fresh mint.

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I’m anti-measuring and like to mix things to taste, adding here and there.  I started with half a cucumber (diced), a heaping spoonful of minced garlic, the juice from two lemon wedges, and probably 1.5 tablespoons of finely chopped mint.  Feel free to start with less, mix together and add as needed.  You want the resulting spoonful to have a cohesive flavor profile of all ingredients.  Set aside the tzatziki and bring out your brussel sprouts.  Slice in half, drizzle with olive oil, and bake for 15-20 minutes.  The first time I did this, I admittedly did NOT slice the sprouts in half and they didn’t cook all the way through #bummer.  But they sure do look nice and crispy on the outside!

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After your lamb has cooked to the temperature of your liking, assemble your plate and don the meat with a few heaping spoonfuls of tzatziki.  I like mine medium-rare and confess to being a huge snob about it.

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There you have it! A deliciously healthy way to enjoy your post-Lent dinners!

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Grill Season! Tuna & Tortellini

14 Apr

How phenomenal was the weather in DC this past weekend?! Everyone get to be outside I hope? See the cherry blossoms before they’re past their prime? Solid sunshine for the entire weekend allowed me to do one of my absolute favorite things- fire up the grill on my deck and cook a delicious, healthy, and affordable springtime meal (or should I say summer already?). A recent roommate trip to Giant left me fully equipped; I had a nice piece of fresh tuna, a package of spinach tortellini, and some summery wheat beer to enjoy.  As I’m sure you’re aware, Giant is a preferable alternative to Whole Foods or Harris Teeter from a financial standpoint because the quality (i.e. fresh seafood) is still great.  The tuna was $4.99 a piece, so I spent roughly $15 including the beer.  My kind of dinner price point on a Friday evening in the District!

I made sure to be a good DC resident and document the blossoms during their peak moments, something I’ve been remiss in doing the past two years (oops).

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On the grill– seasoned with tons of garlic powder, salt, pepper, and a secret spice mix.  Cook on high for 4-5 minutes per side, depending on how you like it.

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My bottle of Oberon, spinach tortellini loaded with Parmesan cheese and lemon pepper, and the tuna with Dijon mustard for even more flavor.

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As a self-dubbed Grillmaster, you can be sure there will be a ton of grill posts to come!

Nommin’ Out: U Street Treats

7 Apr

I love living in Shaw for many reasons.  I live right next to LeDroit Park and can hear bubbly children running after the ice cream truck on the weekends.  A community garden is near my house where Shaw residents work together on their veggie plots.  Howard University hospital and dorms are a stone’s throw away.  My neighbors are always stoop chillin’ with a smile on their faces.  Add all of that to the fact that I can walk just a few short blocks to some of the hottest new bars and restaurants in NW, and it starts to make sense why I never leave this area.  Two of the most recent additions to my favorite hood, both of which have already been acclaimed by the Washington Post, are Right Proper Brewery Company and El Rey.

Right Proper Brewery Company

Right around the corner from the Shaw/Howard Metro and next to Howard Theater on T street, this spot opened in December and has been literally packed ever since.  They offer several beers that are brewed in house, along with several other domestic items like DC Brau, all of which are shockingly low-priced between $4 and $5. Beer aside, the food is phenomenal.  I have eaten there several times, and can definitely attest to Right Proper’s undying popularity.  Below are some of my faves:

Chilled Avocado Snack & Bacon-Fried Kale Side

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Eight-hour Lamb French Dip (amazeballs)

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All Beef Chili

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check out the full menu here 

 

El Rey

The brains behind the Brixton, American Ice Company, and Satellite Room opened a fourth U Street gem also back in December- El Rey.  It’s located directly next to Dodge City and you definitely can’t miss the cool construction.  The taqueria is made entirely out of shipping containers and has a retractable roof for those beautiful summer nights.  I’ve already enjoyed several margaritas and some delicious tacos.  My favorite was the al Pastor taco, filled with pork shoulder, pineapple, and chipotle sauce.  Also convenient for U Street, the takeout window is open until 4am on weekend nights to fill your grumbling tummies after a late-night dance sesh.

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Pictured above: The al Pastor, the Carne Asada, and the Pescado.  Menu here!

Hit up one or both of these spots for a weekday date night or a weekend hangout.  Whether it be a Tuesday at 7pm or a Saturday at midnight, I can guarantee you will be pleased.

thewinelifestyle

So close to wine

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Discovering new Foodventures with each bite

A Stairway To Fashion

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Madison Sheffer

a creative communicator

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