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Kelly Spitzer

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  • Favorite foods: I love eggplant. And Thai food, especially a good red curry. New Mexican cooking is the ultimate. I'm a green chile girl all the way. I like to drink Guiness beer and red wine. I also eat a lot of salad.

Caring for Cast Iron

I scrub my cast iron with coarse salt and hot water. Never use soap. Before each use, I rub a little oil over it with a paper towel. That's all there is to it! The more you use it, the better seasoned it will become.

Santa Fe Recommendations

SantaCafé. Definitely. Skip Tomasitas. I know it's uber popular, but why???

Talk Up Your Hometown!

Durango, Colorado. It's a pretty well known tourist town. Lots of outdoor activities, a famous steam train, and plenty of Native American culture. Celebrities love it. Which is all great for the restaurant industry. There are a ton of restaurants, and a lot of good restaurants. My favorites are Cypress Cafe (organic Mediterranean) , East by Southwest (sushi with a southwest flair), Seasons (until they burned down, but they'll be back), Raider Ridge Cafe (breakfast burritos and smoothies). There's a newish Mexican restaurant there that's pretty good--No Way Jose's. Really, just way too many to list!

Kelly
Flavor a Deux

Summer Mango Fire Salad with Grilled Shrimp

Balsamic Tomato & Basil Salad

Huh. I tried that before and it just gave me the picture again. But it works now! Love your blog. I'll bookmark it.

Balsamic Tomato & Basil Salad

Yum! Do you have a food blog where this recipe is posted?

Thanks.

Kelly
Flavor a Deux

cooking sites

Hey, thanks, Brownie and suthungirl!

Yes, Heidi Swanson's 101 Cookbooks is very good. Healthy food, too!

I didn't know Michael Chiarello had a blog. Woohoo!

Kelly
Flavor a Deux

Outdoor Wedding Reception Ideas

We held a sit down dinner outside after our ceremony. We served appetizers beforehand. The full menu looked something like this:

Roast beef with shiitake mushroom sauce
Honey and pineapple glazed ham
Caeser salad
pasta salad
smoked salmon
shrimp
rolls and assorted bread
assorted cheeses
assorted crackers
assorted fruit
tapenade
chocolate truffles
angel food cake with strawberries and whipped cream
punches; alcoholic and non
beer, wine
coffee

Is your friend having this catered, or preparing the food herself?

Kelly
Flavor a Deux

cooking sites

Food blogs! There are hundreds out there, many of which are fantastic. Some of my favorites are Simply Recipes, Bitchin Camero, Coconut and Lime, and Smitten Kitchen. And that's just to name a few. I have a lot of links on my site that you can check out. My site is Flavor a Deux.

Margarita Mix

For large parties we always buy the Jose Cuervo pre-mixed. All you gotta do is fill a glass with ice and pour. No need to add tequila or anything. They come in two sizes (not sure if they are half gallon and gallon, or what), and if you plan on having a lot of drinking guests, you can buy a box for about $70. Super easy. Set out fresh lime slices for those who like it.

Kelly
Flavor A Deux

Best ways to add fiber?

You can buy bran in nearly every supermarket. I don't do this personally, but I know people who add bran or wheat germ to their every day cereal. Or just eat oatmeal for breakfast! :) Also, adding beans to meals is an excellent way to get fiber. Add them to salads, or make them for a side dish. They have tons of fiber!!! The most of anything I can think of... Eating fruits and veggies for a snack will help, too.

Kelly
flavor a deux

Easy Curry Recipe

Here's my recipe for a Red Curry. It's not Indian, but it's pretty tasty!

Thai Red Curry.

Kelly
flavor a deux

Project Food Blog Cook-Off

I'll check your blogs out. Thanks! Redhead--I've already chosen the recipes for April, but I'd like to continue the cook-off in forthcoming months.

Going organic in a large family - advice needed!

I'd start by buying organic milk. If you use soy milk, buying organic soy products is especially important as conventional soy beans carry a lot of pesticides. Any fruit where you eat the peel, I'd buy organic. However, I find organic bananas are much tastier. I like to buy organic meats, too, as the producers don't use hormones, but this can be very expensive. If you have a Trader Joe's in your area, you can find tremendous deals on organics there, however.

Kelly

_________ gives me heartburn

This is random, but chocolate chip cookies.

Corn syrup-is it really that bad? Replacements?

Has anyone tried brown rice syrup?

Your Worst Meal Ever

Hmmm. I've made my share of lousy meals, I'm sure. I can't think of any off the top of my head, but my husband once fixed me a spaghetti dinner. He was so proud of his homemade tomato sauce. It contained every type of sweetner in the house--white sugar, brown sugar, honey... It was, um, awful. But he was so proud and so excited that he cooked ME dinner. I ate it. He hasn't been allowed to touch tomato sauce since...

Kelly

Sandwich Lover? Let's build!

Mmmm. Sandwiches. I'm drooling over some of these.

I recently made a Veggie Italian Sandwich that features a tangy tapenade. You can check it out here. Click!

In general, I love sandwiches with tons of fresh ingredients.

Kelly

Confess Your Kitchen Catastrophes!

I did this again just last night-- instead of defrosting my chicken breasts, I microwaved them. I should have learned the first time what that Chicken/Fish button does on my new microwave, but I just cannot fathom that anyone would actully cook chicken or fish in the microwave, so I assumed (again) that it was defrost. Sigh.

Kelly

Do you have THE BEST goat cheese spread recipe ever?

This recipe looks fantastic, nicolep! Sundried tomatoes seem to naturally go with goat cheese, and the unusual combination of dill and cashews sounds delightful! Thanks for sharing.

Kelly

What foods do restaurants most often mess-up?

Oh, you want beverages, too! Let me go on a rant here. Maybe I am a coffee snob, but I truly loathe Starbucks. Their coffee is not coffee. For one thing, they rarely serve it hot. Even if you ask for it extra hot, it is never hot. When I say hot, I mean: it-should-be illegal-to drink-for-twelve-minutes-hot. Not: take-it-home-and-nuke-it-if-you-want-it-hot. Aarrrrggh. Also, the ratio of actual coffee to milk is atrocious. What is it, three quarters milk to one quarter espresso? G-R-O-S-S.

What foods do restaurants most often mess-up?

Eggplant Parmesan. It's always an oily, soggy mess.

Kelly

My Seven Go-To Foods for the New Year: What Are Yours?

Almonds. Trader Joes has a great variety. My favorite is the (unsalted) Dry Roasted Almonds. They don't come in individual servings, but a handful works for me.

apples (if I'm extra hungry, I'll add a few slices of cheese)

Trail Mix. Trader Joes actually does have a bag that is portioned into individual servings.

Yogurt is great. I like fat free, and I try to buy the brand with less sugar.

Buy a large container of salad greens and pre-portion them into individual serving containers. I do this, along with small containers of dressing, for my husband's lunch. I also cut up a variety of veggies and put them in a big bowl. Radiches, carrots, broccoli, red and green peppers. He takes a baggie full with him everyday.

a slice (or two) of whole grain toast with apple butter

Hmmm. These are mostly snack ideas... For full meals, a lean protein such as chicken or fish, steamed veggies, and brown rice. You can cook the brown rice with flavorings, such as ginger and garlic, maybe a splash of soy sauce.

Oh, and stay off soda pop. I know many people who lost ten pounds but cutting it out of their diet. They did nothing else, and lost ten pounds. Diet is worse than regular. There are studies about this.

Good luck!

Favourite Pizza toppings?

There are so many pizza styles I love, but to answer your question specifically:

I'd order a pepperoni and fresh garlic thin crust from our locally owned and operated pizza joint.

Dream pizza? I'm not really sure, actually. I really love fresh garlic on pizza, however. Roasted garlic, too. How about something like roasted vegetables--onion, zucchini, red pepper, mushrooms, garlic--with several cheeses. Mozzarella, Parmesan, a sprinkling of feta or chevre. Sun-dried tomatoes. Walnuts. That'd work for me.

I also run a Pizza Night column on my food blog, if anyone is interested...

Kelly
flavor a deux

Favorite healthy cookbooks?

Any Moosewood, but especially, as Erika points out, Moosewood Lo-Fat.

Food Allergies

What are you allergic to and how do you avoid it? The only thing I have a known problem with is pineapple. Since this is not a common ingredient, I'm pretty safe, but I do find it added to a lot of mango based salsas and glazes. Also, in tropical alcoholic drinks.

Kelly
flavor a deux

Project Food Blog Cook-Off

I'm starting a project called Food Blog Cook-Off, where I cook eight recipes from eight different food blogs in a month. (For more details, visit my site, flavor a deux.) Let me know if you have recipes you recommend, or if you want to join in. Should be fun!

Favorite Wines?

What wines do you return to again and again? I buy Yellowtail Shiraz quite often, but I really dig Sebastiani's Merlot and Ponzi's Pinot Noir Reserve.

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