Share Our Strength's Taste Of The Nation 2013

Share Our Strength's Taste of the Nation 2013

Share Our Strength's Taste of The Nation is the nation's premier culinary benefit dedicated to eradicating childhood hunger. The funds raised at Taste of the Nation events, which are held in nearly 40 cities across the country, support Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry campaign. The campaign helps to end childhood hunger in America by building public awareness about the issue as well as the solution, increasing participation in public nutrition programs, and teaching families to cook healthy, affordable meals through the Cooking Matters program.


Taste Of Columbus Hospitality Group

Last week I attended The Taste of Columbus Hospitality Group at Mistral. The event showcased the restaurants in the Columbus Hospitality Group, which include Mistral, as well as L'Andana, Mooo...., Sorellina, and Teatro. I'd already been to Mistral, L'Andana, and Sorellina and looked forward to trying bites from those restaurants as well as the two I haven't yet been to.


Dinner At Redd's In Rozzie, Roslindale, Mass.

Redd's in Rozzie, Roslindale, Mass.

After reading and commenting on each other's blogs for months, Colleen from What's Baking in the Barbershop?! and I figured out that we live relatively close and decided to get together for dinner. We chose to meet at Redd's in Rozzie, a small restaurant in Roslindale Village that neither of us had been to before. Part of what inspired me to go there was reading about Redd's commitment to being a responsible local business on its website. This means they work with local farms, brewers, fishermen, and bakeries; source food and wine that is seasonal and responsibly raised; use antibiotic- and hormone-free meats; and recycle and compost three-fourths of their waste. That sounded good to me and so did the menu.


Italian-Style Grilled Cheese Sandwiches With Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend

Italian-style grilled cheese sandwiches

It's National Grilled Cheese Month, and I was invited to participate in Kitchen Play's 30 Days of Grilled Cheese, an event sponsored by Land O’Lakes. The way the event works is that each day throughout the month a different blogger posts a grilled cheese sandwich made with Land O Lakes® Deli American Cheese or 4 Cheese Italian Blend, and today happens to be my day!


Boston, A Place I Call Home

It's hard to come up with words, but it doesn't feel right to not say anything, so here's my attempt...

As many of you know, I live in West Roxbury, which is part of Boston. I've lived in the Boston area for the past seven years. I never imagined anything like what happened Monday happening in a place I call home.

On Monday morning, I was disappointed that I was heading to work and not off to celebrate Patriots' Day, the Red Sox, and the marathoners. On Monday afternoon, I sat at my desk, listening to sirens -- incessant sirens -- and helicopters and just knew that something was wrong. During the Boston Marathon, it's not unusual to hear sirens -- running injuries and heat exhaustion are likely -- but it is unusual to hear sirens that just don't stop. So I turned to Twitter and stared in disbelief at tweet after tweet about explosions at the marathon finish line.

I immediately thought of Jeff who had been watching the Red Sox game at Fenway and who I knew would be along the marathon route watching. I checked in to make sure he was safe. Luckily, I was able to reach him and he was. Then I thought about other people I knew who were running and watching the marathon and hoped they were safe as well. And then I answered texts and messages from family and friends who were checking in to make sure I was safe.

Today I continue to think about everyone who was affected -- those injured or killed and their families and friends, those runners who trained all year and never got to cross the finish line, those of us who live here who now feel that our city has lost its innocence.

And then I think about everyone out there supporting us, all the good deeds, the acts of kindness, the selflessness, the bravery, the coming together in a time of tragedy. It helps to know that in the midst of all the bad there is so much good.

Monday was life changing. Patriots' Day will never be the same. The Boston Marathon will never be the same. Walking down Boylston Street will never feel the same. But as President Obama said, "Boston is a tough and resilient town. So are its people. I’m supremely confident that Bostonians will pull together, take care of each other, and move forward as one proud city." And while this will take time, I know we will.

One small way to help and show your support is to dine at any of the Boston-area restaurants on this list tonight. They will be donating a portion of their proceeds (10%-50%) to the Greg Hill Foundation. All donations will go directly to the victims injured during the Boston Marathon Bombings.


Wedding Glimpse: Food And Drink

It should come as no shock that the food was very important to me when planning our wedding -- it was right behind the groom and the dress. I really wanted in-season food at my wedding, not just some year-round banquet meal. That and my vision for the wedding had us checking out farms and barns for our venue. The venue we ended up picking, The Estate at Moraine Farm in Beverly, Massachusetts, is part of the Webber Restaurant Group, which also includes Gibbet Hill Grill and Fireside Catering.


A Light Dinner At B&G Oysters

After my friend and I took a City Wine Tour in the South End, we wanted to get a bite to eat before joining our husbands at Jillian's for their annual softball team bowling party. (Bar food is just the thing sometimes, but neither of us were feeling it right then.) Once my friend realized I'd never been to B&G Oysters, it was decided that that's where we'd go. B&G is part of the Barbara Lynch Gruppo, a collection of restaurants I've barely made a dent in checking out, with visits to only Drink and The Butcher Shop. I was excited to check another off my list.


Shake Shack, Chestnut Hill, Mass.

Shake Shack, Chestnut Hill, Mass.

Well, we did it. We went to the new Shake Shack in Chestnut Hill one week after it opened and stood in line for 45 minutes, waiting to try the iconic burgers. The line felt like it kept moving (albeit slowly) and when we got to the front of the restaurant, staff members were lighting heat lamps to keep us warm, so it wasn't too bad. (But it was nearly 8 p.m. by the time we got inside.)


On Eggplant And Ottolenghi, Plus Burnt Eggplant Soup With Israeli Couscous

A couple of months ago Yotam Ottolenghi (author of Ottolenghi, Plenty, and Jerusalem -- along with Sami Tamimi) was in town, and he graciously stopped by my work to give a brief talk, answer all our questions, sign our cookbooks, and join us for lunch. When I got up to him with my books, I gushed about how grateful I was for his interesting eggplant recipes. Before his books, I'd make eggplant Parmesan and put eggplant on pizza but not much else.


Sausage Pizza Egg Rolls

Sausage pizza egg rolls

I have an awesome party dish for you guys today. One of my co-workers posted on The Feed a recipe for homemade pizza rolls -- like those frozen pizza rolls from Totino's. You may not know this about me, but Totino's pizza rolls were my post-bar staple during my early 20s. My friend and I would come home from the bar; head to her place, which was right next door to mine; and throw a batch of pizza rolls in the oven. (This even came up during her bridesmaid speech at our rehearsal dinner.) Of course, I never would have made homemade ones then (2 a.m. is not a great time for such projects), but the idea certainly intrigues me now.