willandmegan

"Stuart rose from the ditch, climbed into his car, and started up the road that led toward the north…. As he peeked ahead into the great land that stretched before him, the way seemed long. But the sky was bright, and he somehow felt he was headed in the right direction." (from Stuart Little by E.B. White)


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SHAKE IT UP – Organic Shamrock Shake Recipe

shamrock presentation edit

On Saturday March 9th we spent the day still basking in the pride of a successful homemade wine tasting from the night before. By one o’clock our hunger brought us to Wegmans for food items, mint leaves and coconuts. After the sadness of realizing organic coffee was $11.00 finally subsided, we decided to pass on that purchase. With the fridge stocked heavily Meg and I brushed off the lack of french press and became excited for the preplanned frozen treat that was in store.

Items you will need:

dye. flavor. ice cream

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup Organic Almond Milk
  • 1 cup Organic Vanilla Ice Cream
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoonNatural Mint Extract
  • Tru Whip Natural Whipped Topping (optional)
  • 4 drops Green Food Coloring (optional)
  • Alter Eco Mint Chocolate Bar (optional)
  • Mint Leaf Garnish (optional)
  • Organic Cane Sugar (optional for rim of glass)

Directions:

1- Prepare rim of glass ahead of time by dipping in water and then in a bowl of green colored sugar. Wait for milkshake.

2- Mix ice cream, milk, extract, and green food coloring in blender. (1/2 a bar of Alter Ego Dark Mint Chocolate for delicious, crunchy affect).  Mix until creamy.

3- Pour into glass carefully to avoid ruining the rim

4-Place a few dollops of whip cream in the center.

5-Shave off a fair amount of Alter Ego Dark Mint Chocolate on top of the whip cream.

6-Add mint leaf for garnish.

alter eco mint display edit

Cheers,

willandmegan

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Tocoti Micro-Batch Chocolate Tasting

tocoti display watermark

On Valentine’s Day, Meg and I stopped into Joe Bean Coffee Roasters for their S’more special. The marshmallows and gram crackers were provided by a local company and made with natural ingredients .  Also, the dining arrangement included chocolate by Tocoti! We were intrigued by the packaging, excited they were a new and local chocolate roaster, and happy to hear they are small-batch artisan roasters. Several days later Meg put in an order and it was delivered to our door!

Single Origin Tocoti Chocolates.

Walworth, NY.

Tocoti Website

Dominican Republic 79% Cocao

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Meg: Freeze-pop juice, pineapple

Will: Spicy wood oil aroma, dried raspberry, almonds, minerals, dried dates

Wild Bolivian “Jungle Love” 77% Cocao

jungle love edit

Meg:Peanuts

Will: black pepper corn, wheat, oats, bread

Venezuelan 74% Cacao

venezuelan edit

Meg:Pepperoni pizza, sandalwood, coriander

Will: Floral, pollen aroma, marshmallow, caramelized sugar, wild flowers

Taste Preference Rating:

  1. Dominican Republic
  2. Venezuelan
  3. Bolivian

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Enjoy! willandmegan


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Winter Sake Wonderland

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William and I have this sushi place in downtown Rochester we really enjoy, Max Sushi & Noodles. They just opened on Main Street East in the beginning of the winter. We just accidentally stumbled into it one evening. The first time, we ordered a few rolls, some were seared in front of us with a torch. Some had smokey salt on top. Some noodle dishes had delicious salmon. The second time, we got Sake. And I am glad we did. Typically, for me, Sake all tastes the same. But like anything else we are learning, when you intentionally consume it side by side with other counterparts, each one takes on their own unique personality. We bought two Sake flights. It was a good time. Have you tried any of these?

Hakkaisan Tokubetsu Junmai

Aromatics- N/A

  • Flavor- Fleshy, candied apple

Draft Nigori Kikusui “Perfect Snow”

Aromatics- N/A

  • Flavor-Creamy, sediment, fruit pulp. Don’t. Do. It.

Junmai Daiginjo

Aromatics- Honey, floral nectar, berries, fruit punch

  • Flavor-Minerals, white zinfindale

Nama Sake

Aromatics- coconut water

  • Flavor-Lemon peel, plant root, fruit rind

Oze No Yukidoke

Aromatics-Sage, basil

  • Flavor-“Bullyhill-type wine”

Funaguchi

Aromatics- Pool water

  • Flavor- N/A

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Cheers to Sake in the winter!

xoxo,

willandmegan


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Water tower (25)

creme oakfield edit

“Creme Oak”

Located off Stevens St. in Oakfield, NY

Characteristics: Tan,beige in coloration and small in diameter. Four legs extending down to the base, off-white panels on the tank offset the black bold text (OAKFIELD NEW YORK) Top of the tank is flat with metal hardware above.

Details: Take I-90 West to Exit 48 toward Batavia. Keep right toward Albion and turn right onto Rt-98. Turn left onto Batavia-Elba Townline Rd. Turn right onto Lewiston Rd then turn left onto South Pearl St. then right onto Stevens St. Stevens St. will wind through a small neighborhood and bring you to a dead end near a series of factory/storage buildings. At this point you will clearly see the tower nestled among them.

 

 


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Water tower (24)

oakfield edit 1

“Plain Oak”

Located on Gary Cemetery Rd. in Oakfield, NY

Characteristics: Tall, thin, metal structure with four legs and standard faded teal coloration. Rust and pitting on base and legs. Conical top with capitalized text reading (OAKFIELD)

Details: Take I-90 West to Exit 48 toward Batavia. Keep right toward Albion and turn right onto Rt-98. Turn left onto Batavia-Elba Townline Rd. Turn right onto Lewiston Rd then turn left on Maple Ave. Turn right onto Gary Cemetery Lane from Maple Ave and you will see the tower on the right.


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Dandelion Small – Batch Chocolate Tasting

Yesterday afternoon we both had the pleasure of sampling three wonderful chocolate bars from Dandelion Small-Batch Chocolate. They are a new factory located in the Mission District of San Francisco and took honors as a Good Food Award finalist for 2012. As a fresh business with an awesome bean-to-bar approach, they won our taste buds over in the past and we couldn’t pass up a side by side sampling.

dandelion bundle edit

Our first observation upon splaying out the bars was evidence of lustrous and elegant wrapping. The appearance of delicate gold-foil like designs create the impression of an antique gift. The next examination we made was based on a clear presentation of cacao origin. Included as a part of the packaging text was also a note of recognizable flavor characteristics made by the roasters from Dandelion. Personalized initials on the back side really emphasized the sense of Small – Batch as it erased the possibility of mass production. In this we concluded that comparatively it felt more intimate to be tasting chocolate from a young company with smaller output vs. an international company such as Lindt, Godiva who mass produce their “chocolate”.

3 bar series edit

dandelion vertical edit

dandelion package edit

dandelion bar edit

So, let’s talk taste! While Will & I definitely have very different interpretations of the chocolate during our tasting experience, I will share them all. (Note that mine are probably less refined and slightly more obnoxious) 🙂

Rio Caribe-

Aromatics-cane, oats, mud

Flavor-pine needles, smoke, s’mores, cedar, woodoil, bread

Elvesia-

Aromatics-soil

Flavor-fruit punch, sour patch kids, cheap wine coolers, plum, raisan, tangy finish

Ambanja-

Aromatics-N/A

Flavor-malts, beer, dates, fig

These, honestly, were the most incredible chocolates we have ever had. The intense spectrum of flavors challenged our ability to define taste using specific raw foods we had experienced. We were sad to see them slowly (not really) disappear. So, grab some online. It’s WORTH IT!

http://www.dandelionchocolate.com/store/

 

 


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Lemon Chili Chocolate Pasta

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The other night, I decided to dig out the pasta I had bought from my trip to Venice two summers ago. It had sat there, not for lack of want or even because it was a novelty, but because I could not figure out what to do with it. I mean, let’s be honest. If you read “Chocolate Pasta” what sauce comes to your mind?! Red sauce, gross. Alfredo, weird? Oil and butter, boring. So…apparently I needed two years to mull it over in my head. And then I just thought… spicy and sour! And it was delicious!

Ingredients

  • .5 pound of chocolate pasta (local stores/online/or use it as an excuse to travel to Venice!)
  • 2-3 tbs Butter
  • 1 lemon
  • Local and organic honey
  • 2 1/2 whole, dried chilis
  • 100% unsweetened natural cocoa powder (I use Scharffen Bergen)
  • Asparagus

Directions

  1. Bring water to a boil
  2. While water is heating up, start the base for sauce. Begin melting 2-3 tbs of butter in a pan.
  3. Slice 2 slices off of the lemon before using it for juice. Set aside to garnish dish for later.
  4. Combine 2 tbs honey, 1/4 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice, and 2-3 tbs of honey.
  5. Warm up and mix. Take 1/2 dried chili and crunch between your fingers. Allow some (but not a lot) of the seeds to drop into the sauce. You will want more of the outside chili.
  6. Add some lemon zest from the squeezed lemon and a teaspoon of cocoa powder. Save some lemon zest to place on top of the dish.
  7. Mix and let sit for another 3 minutes.
  8. When the pasta is finished, place some sauce on the bottom of the plate. Add pasta to dish and sauce on top.
  9. Place 2 slices of lemon and 2 whole dried chilis on the side of the plate for garnish.
  10. Sprinkle some cocoa powder on top.
  11. Pair with some lightly steamed asparagus and enjoy!

Will and I decided it tastes like a spicy lemon head! Let us know what you think.

xoxo,

willandmegan

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