quinn patricia poer

quinn patricia poer

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

new york city!


i've been blabbing about wanting to go back here for ages.  specifically, during the fall.  

i went once when i was about 13 years old with my parents, which was a completely different experience.  my mom is a huge fan of seeing every fancy hotel in every city that we go to...so, i saw a lot of hotel lobbies and bathrooms the first time i went to nyc.  i do remember really enjoying the city when i was younger and pretty much coming to a lofty/kooky understanding that that is where all young ladies like myself would grow up and move to in their twenties.  

yes, solely based on the many, many movies set in new york city that i've watched in my life, i thought that we'd all grow up and move to a big city like this and live in a gorgeous brownstone and speed walk to our high-power jobs in our big coats, carrying our to-go coffee cups, briefcases, and a stack of very important documents. 

anyhoo, i've been obsessively watching movies that take place in new york city for the past few years (good thing i've got a ton of options to choose from, because i would shamelessly watch you've got mail, sleepless in seattle, the devil wears prada, and sex and the city on repeat if you let me.  for serious and for real. 
[sidenote: sleepless in seattle is my go-to rainy day flick (which i noticed recently got removed from the netflix romance section.....whyyy, whyyyy, netflix!?!?!).  it takes place not only in my very own fantastic city of seattle, but also the beloved city of my day dreams, new york.]

also, i have a very specific concept of "new york music" in my head.  this is like, a song that probably plays during a movie that partially takes place in nyc, or liiike ella fitzgerald/louis armstrong/frank sinatra style music, or liiiike the elf soundtrack, i suppose.   i've been in moods in the last few years where i want to only listen to "new york music," a genre that i made up in my head, but i know it when i hear it.  however, i think that people would understand what i mean when i refer to "new york music."  anything that you can prance or mosey down a bustling city sidewalk to year-round, really.
[i classify alicia keys and jay z's empire state of mind in this category, too.  along with billy joel.  its an eclectic genre, indeed.]

i finally packed up my suitcase and my good friend whitney and we jetted off to the big apple a couple of weeks ago!  we had a jam-packed, fun, and food-filled three days.  somehow we really managed to do most of the things we went there to do, so that was awesome.  there is never enough time during a trip, though.  i could have easily spent three more days wandering the streets, checking stuff out, and eating more delicious food.

i took way too many photos, of everything.  its just what i do.  please enjoy.
[click the "read more" button below]

Sunday, October 25, 2015

30-minute almond & pumpkin seed chocolate bars with sea salt.

october has been so fabulous!

it continues with these fantastic and simple chocolate bars, studded with pumpkin seeds and almonds.  these are so easy to make, and taste amaaaaaazing.

i used a mixture of dark chocolate and a little bit of milk chocolate with almonds.

i bought a big ol' bag of pumpkin seeds in the bulk section with no intentions of what i'd use them for. 

turns out, these little pepitas are super versatile and you can throw them into oodles of different things.

i've been putting them on top of yogurt & fruit, salads, aaaaand into delicious chocolate bars.

by the way, that persimmon has nothing to do with this recipe.  it was just sitting on the table looking all orange and cute, so i threw it into the photos for some extra fall vibes.

chop the almonds into medium/coarse bits, not too fine.  chop up the chocolate, too!

all ya hafta do here is melt the chocolate over a double boiler, and add your pumpkin seeds and chopped almonds.

i stirred just a touch of coconut oil into the chocolate to keep it moist.  i didn't know if it would dry out at all once all the seeds and nuts were stirred in.

mix it all up!

  freeze it all up!

after about ten minutes in the freezer, sprinkle some sea salt over the top of the chocolate while it is still a little bit tacky.

i sprinkled a touch of pumpkin pie spice to one half of the chocolate, just to see how it would taste.  it's not necessary.  i think i like the plain side better, but the pumpkin pie spice just adds a little somethin' extra.

stick the pan back in the freezer until the chocolate is completely hardened.  i gave mine about 15 more minutes before cutting it up.

chop the chocolate into various sized chunks, mostly bite-sized.


the sea salt really takes the cake!  it adds a lot of oomph and really rounds out the flavor balance of this delectable treat.

this sea salt came from pete's parents that they just got for us in hawaii :)

they also gave us a black sea salt and a pink sea salt that i'm excited to find uses for.

this could be a good easy dessert to bring to a party or as some sort of gift.  i think if you wrapped it up in parchment in a tin it would be easy to transport without getting too melty.  i'm keeping mine in the fridge just in case.

hey hey heyyyyy...talk about a thanksgiving gift for the dinner host!

these are pretty rich and satisfying.  pete and i each ate one piece and were ready to put them away.

they are sooooooooooo yummy, but rich!

p.s.  peter said, "they are perfect!"
...but then he said, "the salt is too coarse."  ugh. whatever man.  i suppose i could have used a tiiiiiny bit less of the coarse sea salt.

good thing, because i could eat one piece of this every day for the rest o my life, i do declare!

30-Minute Almond & Pumpkin Seed Chocolate Bars
Store in airtight container in freezer or refrigerator

  • 7 oz. dark chocolate (I used Lindt 70% cocoa - 2 chocolate bars)
  • 4 oz. milk chocolate with almonds (I used Hershey's with almonds - 1/2 a "giant" bar)
  • 1 cup pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • 3/4 cup almonds, chopped
  • 1 tsp. coconut oil
  • sea salt
  • pumpkin pie spice (optional)

Boil 2-3 inches of water in a large pot.  Reduce heat to simmer, and place a heat-proof or glass bowl into the pot.  You don't want the water to touch the bowl.  

Coarsely chop all the chocolate with a large knife.  Place into the heat-proof bowl and let the chocolate melt.  Add about 1 teaspoon of coconut oil for extra moisture.  Continue to stir the chocolate with a spatula (about 1-2 minutes), just until melted.  Remove from heat and let cool a few minutes.

Coarsely chop the almonds.  Add chopped almonds and pumpkin seeds to the bowl of chocolate. Mix well.

Line a 9x6 or 8x8 baking pan with parchment or wax paper.  Pour the chocolate & nut mixture into the pan and spread/shake evenly into all the corners until the chocolate is flat and even.

Freeze for about 10 minutes, just until tacky.  Remove from freezer and sprinkle sea salt over the top. Sprinkle a touch of pumpkin pie spice, if desired.  Return to freezer and let harden completely, about 10-20 more minutes.

Lift entire parchment out of baking pan onto a cutting board.  Chop the chocolate up into various sized chunks.

Store in airtight container in refrigerator or freezer.



Thursday, October 15, 2015

ricotta toasts, three ways.

it allllllll started when this piece o' bread convinced me it was a donut.

this rustic campagnolo bread (the brown one below) seriously takes on donut-like properties when toasted and buttered.  the key here is butter.  it was the wildest thing.  i honestly felt like i was eating a donut, on two separate occasions.

i put these cherry preserves (thanks greg & rebecca!) on this buttered slice of grand central bakery's campagnolo toast, aaaaaand it was so mega delicious and mysteriously donut-like.  later... i made a regular ol grilled cheese sandwich with the same bread...and it tasted like a donut, too!  like whaaaaaa!? 

i began researching this magical bread straight away.  all i know is that its made with honey and yellow polenta, so maybe thats where it gets its sweeter characteristics.

howeverrrrr, when not buttered, the campagnolo bread does not take on donut-like properties.   its very earthy and more like a rye when plain...

rye bread and donuts do not go hand in hand for me...

its all so puzzling.

sooo, then i went on a toast making spree!

here's how it all went down.

grand central baking company campagnolo on the left, a plump baby loaf of pugliese on the right.

the pugliese is most delightful and seems like a middle of the road bread, somewhere between the likes of sourdough and white as far as texture and flavor.

sometime a few years ago, i was seriously pondering how badly i just wanted there to be a place where i could get a good piece o toast in the morning with a fun topping......

fast forward to 2015, and its alllllllllll about the damn toasts with fun toppings.

uggghhh, why didn't i execute?!? 

nobody wants to shut up about avocado toasts or ricotta toasts right now.  i'm personally very into these types of toast because they are scrumptious.  so i won't shut up about it either!

so anyway.  here you have ricotta toasts.  in three different variations.

campagnolo toasted well, buttered (!!!), ricotta, cherry preserves, topped with fine espresso powder

the espresso powder was such a lovely addition!  it just boosted up the flavor of the cherry.

[ps. i don't even usually like cherry flavored things at all... so apparently i dont like the classics, according to my last post about grape flavors.  but i DO like these cherry preserves that peter's friends made and gave to us]

i don't know what it was, y'all.  but it really tasted like some sort of fruity donut!!!

i don't get it either.  just believe me.  it was a toasty miracle.

now here's "the classic" in the trendy toast trends.

pugliese with ricotta cheese, avocado, fried egg, black pepper, & red chili flakes

last, but not least, is the ricotta + nutella and raspberries.

pugliese with ricotta cheese, nutella, & raspberries
[i would switch it up with whatever fruit you see fit, like nanners.]

toast toast toast toast toast toast everyboddddyyyy.

all three toasts are delicious and flavorful in their own special ways.

mmmmmm! good mooooorrrrrning, toast lovvahhhs.