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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

The Hangry Bison

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It was an unbelievable surprise when my daughter showed up at my job on Tuesday. It turns out, my co-workers knew she was coming. When I saw her face come through those doors my heart just filled up!

One of our long-time family traditions was to go out to dinner and a movie once a week. We are keeping that tradition going.

We’d eaten dinner earlier in the evening but had some time to kill before seeing a movie called The Upside. We headed over to the Winter Park Village in Winter Park we noticed just across from the Regal Cinema this place, The Hangry Bison. We decided to pop in to have a cocktail while passing a little time until the start of the movie.

We walked up to the bar and there we were greeted by this sweet bartender named Eileen. Melissa and I were curious and started asking questions like how long had they been open and what were they best known for. She talked about their hand-built burgers, fine bourbon, and craft beers.

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First, here’s a quick peek of The Hangry Bison.

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Here’s a look at their menu.

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Besides chatting it up with Eileen, who made us feel as though we’d know her forever, are the Jack Daniel’s Whiskey Churro Doughnuts. What?

Well, Melissa was glancing over the menu and noticed a dessert called Jack Daniel’s Whiskey Churro Doughnuts. Eileen told us they were out of this world, with that said, we definitely had to try them. Drizzled with dark chocolate, a Jack Daniel’s Whiskey Caramel, and a light sprinkling of powdered sugar these Jack Daniel’s Whiskey Churro Doughnuts are a roller coaster for your taste buds. Just look!

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For more information about The Hangry Bison, just visit their website at www.thehangrybison.com.

 

 

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Whole Foods

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I was strolling through the Whole Foods market when this display wheel of Parmigiano-Reggiano caught my eye. Oh yeah, the “on sale” sign too!

Right behind the Parmigiano-Reggiano wheel is an enormous wall of cheeses from around the world, I mean that literally! There are cheeses from all over the world, and I’m planning on trying a few of them in the very near future.

 

The most amazing moment was watching the process of opening of an eighty pound Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese wheel.

 

It turns out, this is a pretty big undertaking, and definitely takes some time to complete. Once that wheel is cracked open, it’s pretty awesome! I bought myself a couple of big wedges. When I returned home from the store, I placed one in the freezer and one in the frig. I think it’s going to be a pasta night!

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A Ladies Luncheon At Lynn’s

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My very good friend Lynn asked me if I would have a cooking class/ luncheon at her home. Without hesitation, I said yes! Her home is located in the Historic district of Orlando. This was the perfect place for Lynn and her friends, Marian, Jean, Diane, Gloria, and Sandy to spend some quality time together. I thought it would be a great idea to put a menu together. Show the girls some tips, and cooking techniques that they could take home and use when they’re cooking for their families.

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Earlier in the week, Lynn and I met to iron out all the details. We came up with a plan and set it in motion. Gifts for the girls, a tablescape that would compliment the Italian theme, and then, of course, the menu. The day before the luncheon, I went shopping and found some great seasonal ingredients at the local farmers market in town. I wanted the centerpiece for the table to also echo a few of the ingredients I was using. A large rustic bowl filled with pink grapefruits, lemons, fennel fronds, and fresh bay leaves.

Menu:
Peach Bellinis
Cheese Board, Parmesan, Parmigiano- Reggiano, and Grana Padano
Fennel Salad With Grapefruit, Red Onion and Shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese garnished with edible flowers
Kale And White Bean Soup
Homemade croutons
Eton Mess By Way Of Italy (menu category -desserts)
Peach And Fresh Mint Iced Tea

I set up a small cheese board filled with shards of different types of Parmesan cheeses. The saltiness of the cheeses paired really well with the cocktail I made. I chose to serve Peach Bellinis  Fresh peach puree mixed with Prosecco sparkling wine, garnished with a strawberry. A traditional cocktail that originated in Venice, Italy.

I went through the steps for each course step by step. The ladies were taking notes which made me feel pretty special. They asked great questions and I think they went away realizing that when you use fresh and seasonal ingredients, cooking can be fun as well as delicious. I want to say that these were some of the sweetest ladies and I hope that we’ll be able to get together again in the near future. Lynn, I can’t thank you enough for the opportunity to help you with this amazing luncheon.

Yields: 6 servings
2 heavy bottom soup pots
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time 35-40 minutes

Recipe For Kale And White Bean Soup:
All ingredients divided evenly into two 6 quart heavy bottom pots

2 bunches of fresh kale, stems and center rib removed coarsely chopped
4-15 ounce cans of white Cannellini beans -drained and rinsed
4 tablespoons of olive oil
4 stalks of celery diced halved and coarsely chopped
2 large onions coarsely chopped
8 carrots peeled and 1/2 inch diced
4 cloves of minced garlic
2 teaspoons of grated fresh nutmeg
2 Fresno chilis seeded and minced
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
2 quarts of unsalted chicken stock
8 cups of water (amount of water may vary slightly)
2-2 inch pieces of Parmigiano-Reggiano rinds
2 tablespoons of Kosher salt (1 tablespoon per pot)
1 teaspoon of fresh cracked black pepper (1/2 teaspoon per pot)
2 fresh bay leaves ( dried are fine)
2 teaspoons of fresh chopped rosemary leaves
grated Parmesan cheese for garnish
E.V.O.O drizzle (drizzle in the finished soup)
Accompaniment: homemade croutons

Note: smoked sausage is an option to add to this soup (slice crosswise 1/4 inch thick pieces)

Directions:
Turn the burners on to a moderate heat allowing the two heavy bottom pot to heat up. Remember that all the ingredients will be evenly divided into the two pots. Once the pots have come up to temperature, adjust the temperature to medium heat. Add in the olive oil, diced onions, minced Fresno chili, celery, diced carrots, and tomato paste. Stir all the ingredients together and allow to start softening. Make sure to season as you go by adding a sprinkling of  Kosher salt, black pepper.

Add the minced garlic, bay leaves, and fresh chopped rosemary leaves. Continue to stir. About 3-5 minutes in, add in the unsalted chicken stock, cheese rinds. Slowly add in the half of the chopped kale leaves to each pot. Using a spoon, start to submerge the leaves into the liquid. Next, slowly add in the water and the rest of the chopped kale. This is the point is where you’ll be able to see if you have enough liquid, ( refer to the pictures above) allowing 3 inches of space at the top of each pot.

The kale will wilt as it cooks, and most of the ingredients will also release their water. Not to worry, (cooking soup uncovered) as the soup comes up to a boil, water will also evaporate as the soup cooks. Now, the drained Cannellini beans. Next, it’s time to add the 1 tablespoon of Kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper, and the freshly grated nutmeg to each pot. Stir all the ingredients together. Bring the soup up to a boil, reduce the temperature and simmer for 35-40 minutes or until the kale and carrots are tender. Once finished, cover the soup pots until ready to serve.

Serve in big soup bowls with grated Parmesan cheese, croutons, and a drizzle of good E.V.O.O.

The dessert you see in the pictures above, “Eton Mess By Way Of Italy”  and “Homemade Croutons” recipes can be found by clicking on the links below.

Eton Mess By Way Of Italy

 

Homemade Ciabatta Croutons

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ENO Wine Bar, San Francisco

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I would have to say there is nothing better than a delicious meal accompanied by a great glass of wine. If you in the San Francisco area, Union Square, stop in here. Melissa sent these pics to me to share with my readers, giving you a glimpse of what’s inside. ENO wine bar is located at 320 Geary St. San Francisco, CA. 94102.

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Melissa sampled different wines and was given some background on each one.

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This picture in itself is artwork, wouldn’t you agree?

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Wine tastings and pairings are available in a contemporary atmosphere.  A diverse 300 bottle selection, and close to 50 are available by the glass. A variety of cheeses, chocolates, and wines showcased from local merchants. Supporting local businesses is something they are proud of. Hope if you live in the Bay area, or plan on visiting, you will visit the ENO Wine Bar or at www.enowinerooms.com

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