Sunday, December 28, 2008

Recipe: Fabulous Mustard Chicken

Easy Mustard Chicken

You will love this! It is simple and quick to make, and delicious!!

2 chicken breasts
1 small sweet onion (Vidalia, etc.), finely chopped
salt, pepper
fresh rosemary
garlic, chopped
white wine (1 C)
olive oil
Dijon mustard (3 TB)

-Saute onion and garlic in olive oil for a few minutes. Add chicken sprinkled with salt and pepper on each side. Cook for one minute on each side, until white. Add white wine and some water. After a few minutes, add mustard, and stir together. Cook about 20 minutes, until sauce is condenced and meat is cooked.

When serving, stir with steamed red potato chunks if desired.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Recipe: Fabulous Morning Cocktails!!

A new take on the famous Catherine Beermosa.

Morning Glory
-Red Stripe beer
-Trader Joe's sparkling blueberry juice

Original Beermosa
-orange juice

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Hidden Beer Garden in Brooklyn

Franklin Park

Check out this great outdoor space for cocktails in Brooklyn!! With tons of beers on tap, special cocktails, and a large outdoor space with lots of seating, you will be sure to have a great finish to your Brooklyn evening! I know you will be excited to find caipirinhas on the menu, but don't bother to order here! (too strong, not enough lime...) You are best off ordering a pint of beer, or a glass of red wine. Make sure you bring cash - they don't take credit cards!!

618 St. Johns Place (bt. Franklin Ave & Classon Ave)
Brooklyn (near Botanic Gardens)
(718) 975-0196

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Ivy Hour Alumni Events in San Diego

Ivy Hour

Want to connect with other professionals in San Diego?? Join the Ivy Hour group for tons of exciting events each month. Young professionals in the area take turns hosting events from casino fundraiser nights, to Padres game excursions, to wine tastings to good old-fashioned cocktail hours. Reconnect with and meet other people from other Ivy League schools in this fun (yet exclusive!) environment!! Make the most of your San Diego existenstence!

Sexy Lingerie Destination in Los Angeles

Faire Frou Frou

Come to this sensual destination for all things sexy, sensual, decadent and fabulous! You will love the collection of beautiful, glorious items for home, yourself, and intimate encounters - in the sexiest, most luxurious assortment. You can even shop online if you are in a rush or not in the area! The website is extremely user-friendly and easy to navigate, with great images. The line is superbly edited and will provide you with anything you may want or desire.

13017A Ventura Boulevard
Studio City, CA 91604
(818) 783-4970

Custom Jewelry in Los Angeles

Charlotte's Fine Jewelry

Pick up a fabulous piece of fine jewelery or have your own design created here! This talented artisan has been creating custom keepsakes for my family for years! You will love the attention to detail, and sensitivity to design in each and every piece created by Charlotte in this fantastic space in Southern California for years. Anything you can dream up, she can create!

40 N. Baldwin Ave
Sierra Madre, CA 91024
Ph: (626) 355-2818

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Make Paper in NYC!!

Dieu Donne Papermill

Get into it - cover yourself with paper pulp! Create a masterpiece!

Check out this crazy, super art oriented destination for anything imaginable in PAPER! Yes! Blue jeans, linen, cotton... anything with pulp and fiber can be cooked, mascerated and churned into pulp that you can destine for your own fine art works! Create something meaningful for your mom, your significant other, or your own wall at this amazing fine-tuned industrial/production orientented/art obsessed locale. Check out class schedules and make your own artistic appointment.

315 W 36th St
New York, NY 10018

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Recipe: Nicoise Inspired Rice Salad

Rice Salad

-1 cup rice, cooked
-1 can tuna, drained
-1 onion, diced
-3 small shallots, diced
-several (about 5) radishes, thinly sliced
-2 handfuls fresh basil, leaves thinly sliced
-several hard boiled eggs, sliced in wedges
-2 small tomatos, sliced in wedges
-olives (if desired)

-olive oil
-red wine vinegar
-juice of 1 lemon
-2TB Dijon mustard
-dried oregano

-In a large bowl, combine radishes, onions, shallots, olives (if using), basil and mix together. Add tuna (break apart). Add rice and mix together.

-In a smaller bowl, combine olive oil, vinegar, mustard, lemon juice, oregano, salt and pepper. Mix well with a fork. Pour over rice mixture.

-Transfer to a serving dish. Layer slices of egg and tomato on top. Sprinkle with basil. Serve at room temperature.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Recipe: Easy Mango Salsa

Mango Salsa

-1 mango, not too ripe
-2 green onions - green & white parts thinly sliced
-2 small, fresh shallets, chopped
-spoonful, local raw honey
-some salsa (from a jar is OK)
-red wine vinegar
-juice of 1/2 to 1 lime
-salt, pepper
-dried red chili pepper flakes

-Peel mango, and cut flesh into chunks. Place in bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients (to taste) and mix together.

Delicious on a quesedilla, or over brown rice & black beans or even scrambled eggs! Add a dollop of sour cream, if desired.

Recipe: Sweet Beet Salad

Beet Salad

-bunch small beets, roasted and peeled
-non-fat plain Greek yogurt
-raw local honey
-soft goat's cheese
-raw walnuts

-Cut off greens from beets (save to cook as a side dish). Wrap tightly in tin-foil, and roast in hot (400 degree) oven for about 1 hr, until soft. Let cool a bit, then rub off skins. Refrigerate.

-Mix spoonful of honey in with yogurt.

-Slice beets, and arrange on plate(s). Drizzle with yogurt sauce. Crumble goat cheese on top. Finish with walnuts.

You will love this!!

Tip: Saute greens in olive oil, sprinkle with salt and red wine vinegar, and serve on side with meal.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Weekend Drinks - Afternoon (Chelsea Galleries)

Trestle on Tenth

So you had a fabulous brunch in the Meatpacking, and now your mimosas have worn off after long hours of dutifully walking all the galleries in Chelsea, taking in ALL the new art! Relax, take a seat along the red cushioned bench by the bar and order a delicious, refreshing cocktail to calm down and get your energy back! Hey you never know who you will run into either! (Last time - Francisco Costa!)

Trestle on Tenth
242 10th Ave
New York, NY 10001
(212) 645-5659

Recipe: Fabulous Summer Ginger Iced Tea!!

Ginger Tea

Delightful Summer Elixor!

-small piece of ginger, peeled and sliced
-fresh lime juice (or lemon)
-sliced fresh mint leaves

Place in a large mug or a tea pot. Pour boiling water over, and let sit 10 minutes.

Drink hot or over ice. If over ice, top of with seltzer water.

Very refreshing!

Recipe: Zucchini Flower Omelet

Zucchini Flower Omelet

-3 eggs from the Farmer's Market, slightly beaten
-10 zucchini flowers, stamen removed, rinsed
-3 small white onions, thinly sliced
-vegetable oil / olive oil
-salt / pepper
-sliced tomato from the Farmer's Market, sprinkle with salt / pepper
-sliced baguette or toast
-soy or regular mayonnaise
-sprinkle of fresh lemon juice

Saute onions for several minutes in vegetable oil in a pan until translucent. Add flowers for several seconds until soft.

Add salt and pepper to beaten eggs. Add onions / flowers. Heat olive oil in small pan with sloped sides.

Cook, lifting sides for uncooked egg to slip through. Place plate on top of pan and flip. Place back in pan and cook other side.

Place half of omelet on plate. Garnish with toast with thin spread of soy mayonnaise, slices of fresh tomatos, and wild arugula.


Sunday, June 15, 2008

Drinks Outside Grand Central

Campbell Apartment

Fantastic old-fashioned drinks, wines by the glass and fresh, hot popcorn!! Conveniently located to meet friends after work and before, perhaps catching a train to Westchester or Connecticut - Sit outside and enjoy the newly warm weather!

Campbell Apartment
Grand Central Terminal
15 Vanderbilt Avenue (near 43rd St)
(212) 953-0409

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Watch Films Here

Stephanie Swinton How to be Fabulous

Film Forum

Come here to watch old, foreign or artsy films...Amazing selection! You will love the old-fashioned atmosphere, from the concessions stand (chemical-free popcorn!, with your choice of flavorings --sea salt, honey, etc.) to the velvet seats in the small theaters.

Try buying tickets online, for ease of ordering (pick up at the box office.) Or, come on a week day when the lines are not too long.

Film Forum
209 W Houston Street, NYC 10014
(212) 727-8110

Monday, April 21, 2008

Recipe: Stephanie's Goulash!


-1/2 - 1 lb. bison (or beef) --organic, from the farmer's market, cubed
-6 roma tomatoes, chopped (with seeds)
-3 vidalia onions, chopped
-2 yellow onions, chopped
-6 potatoes, peeled and cubed
-6 cloves of garlic, minced
-1 parsnip, chopped
-2 large carrots, peeled, coarsely grated
-2 large bell peppers, sliced to match-sticks
-2 ribs celery, chopped
-1 1/2 tsp caraway seeds
-6 tbs Hungarian Sweet Paprika
-salt, pepper
-fresh butter
-organic olive oil
-organic broth, or water
-parsley, chopped

-Heat butter and olive oil in large pot. Toast caraway seeds. Add onions, and cook until brown. Add potatoes, parsnips and carrots. Cook until soft. Add celery, garlic, bell pepper and tomatoes. Add paprika, salt and pepper.

-In a separate iron pan, brown bison (or beef).

-Add meat to pot, and add water or broth to cover. Cook for serveral hours. Check flavoring, and adjust. Cook until meat is falling apart. Break meat apart with fork. Cook longer.

-Serve with spatzle (from Germany!) Cook spatzle in boiling water, 16-18 minutes, until very soft. Add butter and chopped parsley.

-Yum, yum!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Italian on the Upper East Side


Check out this tiny hidden restaurant on the Upper East Side for delicious Roman Italian dishes in a romantic, cozy setting. Order any of the fresh pastas which are perfectly cooked. Try Linguine alla Vongole (with clams) or Farfalle Rughetta (with cream, peas, pancetta and mushrooms) and for an appetizer, try the sauteed artichokes. Make sure to listen to the specials of the day, which ususally include interesting fish choices. The short wine list has decent selections, all from Italy.

347 E 85th Street (bt 1 & 2 Ave)
(212) 517-3118

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Hungarian Strudel

Andres Cafe

This tiny Upper East Side cafe is equally amazing for a strong espresso and hot, fresh strudel (apple and cheese/cherry are great selections!) as well as delicious delicate dinner crepes and spatzle! How to decide when to come--whatever your mood, and I suppose, what time of day you find yourself in the area...

Try mail-order when you are out of town.

Andres Cafe
1631 2nd Avenue (bt 84th & 85th)
(212) 327-1105

Dine in This Shrine to Cheese!


Get lucky and score the "chef's table" in the cheese cave, at this great elegant (yet casual) French bistro devoted to cheese (with over 160 different cheeses to choose from!!)

The French onion soup was one of the most decadent and delightful (if not exactly expected flavor) I have ever had (here, or in France!)

Try the fondue, where you can order whatever sorts of dipping delicacies you desire (from beef tips to apple slices). Also try the beet salad with goat cheese and the croque monsieur, bien sur! Don't skip the chocolate fondue for dessert!! This decadent creation comes in an elegant copper pot atop a small flame, accompanied by homemade marshmallows, dried apricots, delicate Madeline cookies, fresh strawberries and sliced bananas.

Party to go? Call Artisanal for "to-go" versions of their fondues for special gatherings outside the restaurant.

2 Park Ave (@ 33rd St)
New York, NY 10016
(212) 725-8585

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Eat German

Schaller & Weber

Visit this fabulous old-fashioned German market on the Upper East Side for all of your German food needs. With over four types of spatzle (from Germany!), homemade sauerkraut, fresh bread from Orwasher's and a fantastic meat counter you will be able to craft the meal of your dreams. High quality meat, knowledgeable butchers and homemade sausages are a key draw at this market. You can also stock up on pretty painted beer steins, as well as spices, European chocolates and candies. If you don't live in NYC, check their website for mailorder!

For a traditional, quick meal: pick up weiners, rolls, dijon mustuard and (purple) sauerkraut. Cook weiners and serve on buns with condiments!

Schaller & Weber
1654 Second Ave (@86th St.)
(212) 879-3047
(Closed Sunday)

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Recipe: Perogies With Chicken and Spinach

-1 package freshly made or frozen perogies
-3 cipollini onions, cut in half, and then cut in half again
-1 organic chicken breast, cut into cubes
-2 cloves garlic, chopped
-2 roma tomatos, diced
-handful fresh spinach leaves
-organic olive oil
-organic balsamic vinegar
-water, if needed
-organic, low-fat sour cream

In a large pan over high heat, sautee onions and garlic in olive oil until onions begin to carmelize. Add chicken. Flip to brown on all sides. Add diced tomato. Add several tablespoons of vinegar. Let reduce and add perogies. Stir. Lower heat, and cover with lid. If pan becomes dry, add some water. Cook 5-10 minutes until done. Turn off heat and stir in spinach. Serve with a dollop of sour cream.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Recipe: Delicious Spanish Frittata

-6 eggs, whisked
-4 potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
-3 onions, sliced (1 yellow onion and 2 Vidalia onions is a nice combination--the Vidalia onion gives sweetness to the final frittata)
-lemon wedges
-fresh bread
-2 roma tomatoes, diced
-2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
-organic olive oil
-salt and pepper
-flat parsley, chopped, for garnish

-In large pan, cook potatoe slices, turning frequently, until soft and brown on edges (about 15 minutes). Remove slices to bowl as they are finished cooking. Once potatoes have finished, add onions to pan and cook until caramelized. Add to bowl with potatoes. Add whisked eggs to bowl and mix together. Wipe out pan. Add more olive oil, and pour in egg mixture. Cook for 8-10 minutes, until set. Invert onto plate (or use special frittata pan!), return to pan and cook other side another 8-10 minutes until done.

-Combine tomatoes, olive oil and garlic. Toast bread in toaster or under broiler until very crispy, and just beginning to turn black on edges. Remove from heat. Scoop tomatoes onto bread.

-Serve with parsley, and lemon wedges.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Divine Wine (Only 5 Days Left!!)

Divine Bar East

I am SO sad that Divine Bar is closing! You have probably heard that due to the rent doubling for their space, they must go... Of course the west side location will remain open, but the big bland Times Square-ish spot is not my favorite. However, until March 29, you can pop in to the cute, cozy east side location, and enjoy the "Liquidate Our Liquids" Happy Hour from 5-7 (wine by the glass, $6 or beer, $3).

To snack on:
-Crostini (served with red pepper, white bean and spinach spreads - mmm condiments!!)
-Baked Brie in Warm Puff Pastry (my favorite here!) - select with honey walnuts and dates, served with sliced apples
-Cheese platters are always nice, with a variety of cheeses to choose from
-Sesame Crusted Chicken Satay

Divine Bar East
244 E 51st St (bt 2 & 3 Ave)
(212) 319-9463

Divine Bar West
236 W 54th St (bt Bwy & 8 Ave)
(212) 265-9463

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Check Out the Opera!! - Met Opera NYC

Stephanie Swinton How to be Fabulous

Metropolitan Opera

I love going to the opera! I love the combination of music, an enticing story, great costumes and captivating vocals. Check out the schedule online, and find a few stories that sound interesting to you. If it is an opera you really want to see, splurge for seats in the orchestra or close to the front. If, on the other hand, you are going by yourself, for entertainment or for educational purposes, check out the "Family Circle" tickets. On week nights, they are only $15!! The drawback is that you cannot see faces clearly, so for a large cast of characters (like War and Peace, or beginning scenes from Carmen) it is difficult to know which character is singing!!

DO NOT waste your attention reading subtitles for operas in other languages! Read the story beforehand while you wait for the theater to go dark, and turn off translating screens while you enjoy the music. Your purpuse at the opera is to already know the story, and to connect with the emotional impact of the music and scenery as you watch the story unfold!

Metropolitan Opera
62-65th St (bt Columbus & Amsterdam Aves)
(212) 546-2656

Note: Keep up to date with all the latest news and events by adding the Met to your contacts in Facebook.

DON'T CLOSE, Florent!!!


How will I ever survive without our favorite, flambouyant-waiter-staffed, 24-hour, quirky, Frenchie-fantastic delicious diner?? The Meatpacking district and $50,000 per month rent current realities don't neccessarily translate to success for all businesses...and I am so sad because of that! Of course, it appears that no one knows the official closing date, so go there soon and enjoy!

I like to visit for brunch (after a long night out, even say in CT!!) and, as you must realize brunch in NYC can be any time between 11am (quite early!) and 5pm!! Mimosas are superb, and waiters are amazing (even if they might playfully tease you for your hangover state lack of fast powered brains!) The goats cheese wrap, onion soup, poached egg dishes and anything with french fries are key items to order!

69 Gansevoort Street
(212) 989-5779

Somewhere Besides Blue Ribbon?

Ditch Plains

OK, Well I know it is not possible to ever tire of Blue Ribbon, but say you desire some variety for a Sunday morning brunch (or otherwise) outing...

Try the dark blue space right across the street!! You will love the intimate atmosphere, good strong coffee, nice waiters and completely adequete menu. And, no waiting like at Blue Ribbon!! That is amazing, and rewards the needs of instant gratification! Mmmm...

Try ordering French toast, a grilled chicked sandwich, or any of the egg specialities on the brunch menu.

Ditch Plains
29 Bedford St
New York, NY 10014
(212) 633-0202

Celebrate the Irish!

Molly's Snug and Molly Pitcher's Ale House

Stop in to Molly's Snug to toss back a couple of pints of Guinness with some old, drunk Irish patrons. You will feel like you are in the UK!!! After you have enjoyed drinking beer with the old-timers, walk through the doorway to Molly Pitcher's Ale House, whice is much larger, less stuffy and full of young people (probably all from the UES). At this down-to-earth bar, grab a table, order a Harp beer, and split a fish and chips (make sure to ask for malt vinegar!) You will be sure to have a lovely Irish style evening!

Molly Pitcher's Ale House
1641 2nd Avenue (@85th St)
(212) 249-3068

Recipe: Stephanie's Fabulous Lamb Stew

I couldn't find a recipe to encompass all the flavors, textures and ingredients in this recipe, so I had to invent it!

Marinate Lamb:
-lamb, cut into 1" cubes (preferably fresh, from a farmer's market)
-3 cloves of garlic, sliced
-1 large shallot, thinly sliced
-juice of 1 lemon
-5 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
-3 cloves garlic, whole
-organic olive oil
-fresh ground pepper
-cayenne pepper
-ground ginger

-4 roma tomatos (seeds removed), diced
-1/2 bottle red wine
-1 carton organic vegetable stock
-4 medium-large potatos (yellow skin)
-3 cloves garlic, sliced
-4 large carrots, peeled and cut into small chunks
-2 celery ribs, cut in half, and then cut into small strips
-3 small yellow onions, diced
-black raisins, soaked in hot water and drained
-dried tarragon
-ground ginger
-1TB dried peppercorns
-1/2 bag brown dry lentils
-grated lemon peel (from squeezed lemon used in marinade)

-Chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

-Place lamb in shallow dish. Cover with slices of 3 cloves of garlic, slices of 1 shallot, juice of 1 lemon, salt, pepper, some cayenne pepper, paprika, cumin, and olive oil. Turn to coat. Place in refrigerator for 2 hours, turning once.

-Place potatos in glass dish. Stir with sliced garlic, olive oil and salt, pepper and tarragon. Roast at 350 degrees for 1 hr. Remove from heat and set aside.

-In a large frying pan, sauté carrots, garlic, celery and onions in some olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

-Heat 2 TB of olive oil in large stewing pot. When hot, add lamb. Brown on all sides. Add red wine. After 10 minutes, add vegetable stock. Simmer 30 minutes, then add tomatos. Add all spices and salt and pepper.

-After 1 hour, add all cooked vegetables, and add lentils. Also add grated lemon peel, 3 whole cloves garlic, and left over lemon peels. You can also add whole pepper corns. Cook for another hour.

-When vegetables are soft, stew is thick and lamb is falling apart, you may stop cooking. Add raisins.

-Ladle stew into bowls. Top with parsley. Serve with heated whole wheat pitas, topped with a bit of olive oil and garlic (if desired) if you wish.

Eat Austrian Food, Feel Like You Are in Europe (Check Out Some Art)

Cafe Sabarsky

If you have never been to the Neue Gallery, take a walk around and look at the art and amazingly beautiful architecture of the building.

Whether you go to look at the art or not, the Cafe Sabarsky on the first floor is a fantastic place to have lunch, or coffee and dessert. The breakfast looks amazing, but you must arrive before 11am! I recommend the superb beef goulash with spatzle. Choose a strong coffee, or esspresso with whipped cream, interesting pots of tea, or syrup flavored waters from the drink menu.

Cafe Sabarsky
85th St @ 5th Ave
(212) 628-6200

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Recipe: Yellow Split Pea Soup

This is a simple, great weekend dish that you can start in the morning, leave on the stove all day, and find your home full of the delicious aroma when you are ready for dinner. Serve with crusty bread and mild cheese (like a farmer's cheese) or a simple salad.

-1 bag yellow split peas
-2 yellow onions, quartered then sliced
-4 celery stalks, roughly chopped
-1 big carrot or handful of baby carrots, roughly chopped
-2 cartons of organic vegetable stalk
-2 TB butter or olive oil
-1 TB cumin
-salt, pepper

Sort through and rinse peas.

Heat butter or olive oil in large pot. Add onions, cook for 5 minutes. Add celery and carrots, cook for 15 minutes on low heat, until onions are clear (do not brown.) Add cumin, salt pepper. Add peas and one carton of vegetable stalk. Add more stalk, salt, pepper as the soup cooks. Cook on low heat all day.