My Café Dream List

Weigh Less For Life

Through out my coffee adventures my appreciation of the diversity of the bean and the art that goes into making it a delicious sip has only grown. And so had my list of “If I was to open a café it will have…” 

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Celebrating National Peanut Butter Lovers’ Day at Something Sweet Dessert Cafe

The Hudson Valley Foodie

VSCO Cam-3     March 1st, 2016 was National Peanut Butter Lovers’ Day but in this house it could be every day because we’re nuts for peanut butter! Apparently we are not alone because Americans spend almost 800 million dollars a year on peanut butter. Aside from being delicious there are actually some pretty good reasons to love it. Peanut butter is high in protein and is a good source of potassium. It also.contains fiber, healthy fats, magnesium, Vitamin E,Vitamin B 6 and antioxidants.Research shows that eating peanuts or peanut butter can decrease your risk of heart disease, reduces bad cholesterol , protects healthy brain function and may even help protect against certain types of cancer. Now you can see why it’s something to celebrate!

     After giving it the careful consideration it deserves I decided that the best place to celebrate this pseudo holiday would be Something Sweet Dessert Cafe. I have it…

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Words Crush Wednesday – Nigella Lawson Edition

Eat, Play, Clove

When I first started cooking six years ago, I relied solely on recipes and taste buds. I am definitely not a chef, nor have I had any kind of formal training, but there’s something special about feeling ones way through a recipe, adjusting and adding according to what feels right, as opposed to what one was taught. I have deep respect and admiration for actual chefs, oh how I would love to pick their brains, but I am also in awe of people who make beautiful dishes based solely on their gut feeling. Regardless of formalities, food is to be enjoyed, savoured and celebrated, however that dish was created, and by whomever created it!

Nigella 2

Please go to Rebirth of Lisa for more delicious quotes!

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Food Is Meant To Be Shared.


My entire life has revolved around food in one capacity or another. When I was a kid growing up, my family sat down to dinner every night. Some  nights we would sit around the table chatting away about each others day. Other nights would end in smashing dishes and yelling. (All of us Cutten men are very short tempered. Especially when hungry) Either way it was around a table filled with food.

I was lucky enough to have a wonderful Sunday filled with great food and laughter. We took a trek to the mountains and prepared a wonderful brunch accompanied by mimosas. The meal was a french toast with a red current syrup and mascarpone. I am usually not one for sweet heavy breakfasts but, this one hit the spot. The way the mascarpone melted into the sweet and bitter syrup was simply divine.

The real treat was after brunch…

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My Journey Begins

Finding Mis en Place

Ever since I was a kid I’ve been in the kitchen. It wasn’t that I was helping since I didn’t even make my first Top Ramen until the age of 12 but I’ve always found home where the food happened to be. I remember getting kicked out of the kitchen before Christmas dinner for stealing Pillsbury crescent rolls before my grandmother could put them out. I began to cook as a means for surviving long summers when my parents were at work because we were sadly bereft of Lunchables and other instantly satisfying foodstuffs. Besides, ramen was cheap and easy for my brother and I so we liked it. We eventually got more daring and broke out the Betty Crocker Kids Cookbook but it would be long before I found myself studying the complex tastes of world cuisine and the knife skills of Morimoto. I had simple beginnings and I…

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Guest Blogger Mike Barbaro’s review of Rock ‘n’ Joe

Mindful Pittsburgh Foodie

rocknjoe01Rock ‘n’ Joe Coffee Bar, located in downtown Pittsburgh’s Cultural District.

Mike & I have been following each other for a few years now on Twitter. He is a hard-working Web Designer, with an appetite for exploring new foodie spots around the ‘burgh! Here is his bio and review:

Mike Barbarois the founder and chief designer at Web CanvasPittsburgh Website Design, and a foodie who is a member of the Millenial generation. He loves how many new, unique restaurants have been popping up all over Pittsburgh and is on a quest to try them all!

For a coffee connoisseur like myself, I get a little over excited when I hear that a new coffee shop is coming into town!  As a Downtown Pittsburgh resident, I have several options close by to explore. Too often Starbucks and other corporate chains get boring, not to mention over-crowded in large cities…

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Review: Stonewell frying pans


I love to cook, I have no idea where the urge or enjoyment comes from I just love to cook and for those of you who also love to cook then you would understand the importance of having good appliances and cooking utensils, which is why I am doing a review on my favourite frying pans.

Stone Well frying pans have been mentioned on infomercials and can be found at your local warehouse or even Mitre 10. My love for them started in 2015 when I got my first one for my birthday (yes I know I got a frying pan for my birthday present), however they are pricey and range from $50NZD upto $120NZD. The first one I received was just a small one so suitable for frying eggs and a few strips of bacon. When I first tried it, it was just like on TV non-stick and so…

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Urban Street (World’s Best Streetfood)


Thanks to a balikbayan uncle, we found ourselves in Marikina and had the chance to grab some merienda (afternoon snack) at Urban Street.

The Urban Street concept plays up Philippine streetfood to a cozy, 20-seater dining spot that’s awesome for just hanging out. Interiors are great and prices are very friendly.

I didn’t try streetfood, however (I know, why not, right?). But we just had a big lunch at a local seafood place nearby and was really so full. However, dessert was in order.

street food menu

My cousin prodded me to try their Frozen Salted Caramel Cheesecake. It’s quite unique and I love the Himalayan salt on the side. It gives you control of how much salt you want in each bite, to create that sweet and salty mix just right for you 🙂 And you can even ask for more! At P110, that salted caramel cheesecake is quite…

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Snack and drink in South Bombay

Indian Streetfood

There’s a reason why ‘townies’ are infamous for not going anywhere outside of ‘town’ for anything. Well, can’t blame them, can you! Whether it is a 9-5-office-goer or a college student, one can find great food in the hidden by-lanes of Ballard Pier to the open beachfront of Chowpatty. Let’s look at the various street food options available for the townies and the townies at heart.

Bhel near Chowpatty

Sahir Khan has been selling bhel for 12-13 years. Look for an Aarey Stall at the above location and you will Sahir work his magic on the spicy, tangy bhel for just Rs.20.

chinagateRecommendation: Bhel
Landmark: Opposite Bachelor’s, Near Chowpatty, Girgaum

Chana Chaat near Chowpatty

If you’re looking for a healthier fix, then try Ishraa Ali’s Chickpeas or Chana Chaat opposite Bachelorr’s near Chowpatty, Girgaum. This lip-smacking combination of chana, ginger-garlic paste, tomatoes, onions and some chillies is not only delicious…

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CHICHA – Ceviche Heaven

it's raining flamingos & foxes

This amazing little Peruvian street food pearl has grown to become one of our absolute favourite restaurants in Berlin. Always friendly, always fun and always impeccably tasty. Except from the permanent menu where the flagship courses can be found (like the various types of ceviche, yuca and plantain) they also present special daily dishes – which in our opinion, is where the real tasting experience happens – simply delicious! Favourites among these have been broiled tuna and different variations of oysters just to mention a few. Not that we need to convince you any further, but this place also serves the best Pisco Sour in town.

CHICHA_collage_croppedScreen Shot 2016-02-25 at 23.37.53

Area: Neukölln
Friedelstraße 34, 12047 Berlin
U-bahn: Schönleinstraße (U8)

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Molecular gastronomy at delish


This week Corey and I are going to a master class in molecular gastronomy this week.

We can’t wait to learn more about how to make savoury ice creams, raspberries that literally burst in your mouth and pasta made from herbs.

Our imagination knows no limits, and with a little knowledge of the science behind it all, some fantastic combinations have emerged.

Most of us have heard of Heston Blumenthal and his crazy creations, I wonder what will be the next big thing to come out of this new and exciting method of cooking.

I will keep you abreast of what we learn……

For now dream up a creation, we would love to give them a try for you


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New Master Chef Program- Tuesdays 4/23@6:30pm – YOU CAN STILL JOIN!


It is always an exciting time for me.  I start a new Master Chef Program and on Day 1, I find out what my students are wanting to achieve at the Culinary Classroom.  One of my Students, Solange, is Brazilian and French.  She has been cooking as a Private Chef for years.  She knows that the knowledge I will give her during the next 18 weeks will make her a better cook.  As I tell all of my students, you never stop learning.

That is one of the wonderful things about teaching.  The Culinary Classroom is celebrating it’s 10th year in business and I am teaching my students more now compared to what I was teaching before I even opened the Culinary Classroom.  Whether you are a budding professional or just want to broaden your culinary horizons at home, you will never stop learning.  It is one of the fantastic…

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Eating out in Italy: Florence and its Cuisine

Fashion Dress Up

Florence does not simply regard itself as home to the greatest of Italian regional culinary traditions, but as the birthplace of Western cookery alltogether. Florentines will tell you with pride that it was Catherine de Medici who taught the French to cook by taking a team of Tuscan chefs with her when she moved to France to marry the Duke of Orleans, later to become King Henry II..

While it is hard to tell if the above is true or false, there is no doubt Florence can reward the wise traveler in search for good local food, especially if he/she manages to get off the beaten track. The key is to find a place that looks as though it’s popular with locals. If you find such a place, you’re probably onto a winner, both price and taste wise. As in most cities, the cheapest eating places can be found in…

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Cooking Competition Finale; A Millet And Sorghum Show-Off

Chocolaty Prints




Happy feast-season everyone, I’m certain you’re in the middle of planning for your office parties, end of year events or just planning to take leave!

This has to be my favorite time of the year, mainly because there are several events I get to attend. Which brings me to the Cooking Competition which you might remember I told you all about here. Being the reliable food-journalist, I was on time at the Golf Course Hotel to report in lengthy detail, what transpired.

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Baking Experiment: Meringue


I have been trying to use my Kitchen Aid as much as I can. And Stephen gave me the perfect opportunity. He works for Americorps in the Columbus City Schools and there is a big event at his elementary school this Thursday. Last time there was an event like this they had a chili cook off and I got to use my crockpot for the first time. Now they are having a baking competition and I’m making meringue cookies!

How delicious does that sound? I did some research and found a really simple recipe HERE. I’ve never made meringue before and I have always thought of them as really fancy desserts. But it’s not hard to make. And they are so yummy!


So I decided to do a test run before making the meringues for Stephen’s event. Tomorrow is a running day so when we get out of work…

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#SupahChef – Fruit cheesy shots



Supah Chef cooking contest was organised by Capricorn Productions &Solution Limited in association with cook food and sponsored by Fortun, Ambrosia Resturant Thane.

After going through few elimination rounds I managed to reach in finalealongwith really talented wonderful 40  contestant.

My semifinals round recipes is already posted which took me to finale check that here Chessy Pocket pizza paratha

Now for finale we got a theme to cook a starter with fruits along with a cocktail and a mocktail…

And I choose to cook

fruit cheesy shots


Green Apple 1(grated)

Raw banana -2-3 (Boiled and mashed properly )

chesse cubes(small pieces)


red chillie powder


garam masala

green coriander leaves

Dry mango powder

white til

oilto deep fry


Take grated apple remove excess water and mix well ingredients (remember for quantity to mix as we are going to put same in raw banana too) salt, garam masala…

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Reading Analogically: Ideas From René Redzepi’s “A Work In Progress”



“We’re always searching for an association that allows the dish to make sense on a fundamental level–a connection we can build the finishing elements on.”

“We made a dish with no reference points in the past nor in other lands.”

Examining in depth a single ingredient.

Mapping ingredients and creating a knowledge bank.

“It’s almost as if our intuition wants more than our mind is capable of understanding. But from that moment, you subconsciously start gathering the tools for it to make sense down the line.”

“A new tool for us, a way of creating brightness…a way to sharpen anything, really.”

“Creativity is the ability to store the special moments, big or small, that occur throughout your life, then being able to see how they connect to the moment you’re in. When past and present merge, something new happens.”

“Gut reactions are just as important in discarding an idea as…

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Favorite Mid-East Cookbooks: the link to a distant past.

Slices of Quince

Version 2

My family’s women were preoccupied with food and cooking.

Lebanon was the crossroads of civilization and it’s cuisine reflected it. My mother and grandmother’s culinary repertoire was mostly Levantine with hints of Greek, Egyptian, Iraqi and Armenian. There were no written recipes or records, files or cookbooks, yet there were endless conversations about the latest failures and successes in the kitchen. The spontaneous barrage of questions, detailed comparisons of methods and styles between friends and relatives would lead you to believe that this close-knit community was about to produce a thesis on comparative cookery.

The women I knew were immersed in complex relationships of subliminal competition or undisclosed complicity. Pride bordered on arrogance, admiration was only a diplomatic façade, and praise was a cover for envy. However, it would have been unthinkable not to share one’s tips and secrets. Recipes were handed down from mother to daughter and, each generation, by…

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Exotic in Tangerang: Reptiles On Your Plate

Catatan Si Ave


The more the day was getting darker, the more there were food tends scattered across the street especially while visiting Paramount modern market at Gading Serpong, South Tangerang. As tenda Mahkota Cobra offered exotic food consisting of reptile meats, I and my friends dared to experience how they would be served on the plates.

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Hormone Reset

The Paisley Kitchen

Hi, there!  Happy Sunday!

How’s the weather for you?!  Erie is experiencing a weird mid-winter warm up after we were hit by a ton of snow earlier this week.  I’m not complaining though!  I’m counting down the days til summer.

I’ve been a tiny bit down in the dumps lately when it comes to my food and weight relationship.  I feel I am honestly eating the healthiest I have ever been eating in my entire life.  A lot of my “down time” is in the kitchen prepping meals and planning what we enjoy throughout the week.  So, it saddens me to think I am eating some of the best food choices I can and I continue to hold onto unwanted weight.

I have been a raw foodie, vegetarian, omnivore, low carb, no carb, and just about everything in between.  My goal for this year was to completely transition to veganism…

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Anthony Bourdain: from Chef to World Traveller and Author

chef kev & co.

Anthony Bourdain Anthony Bourdain

How do you go from being a chef deep in the kitchen grime to a world traveller and author?

I don’t even think Anthony Bourdain knew how he did it. After reading some of the gruelling stories in Kitchen Confidential and watching his various TV-streaming programs like The Layover, there is hope that one day the grind will slow down. But, for now, Chef Kev is off to learn all that he needs to know about slicing, chopping, braising and all-round shenanigan-ing.

Watch Bourdain speak at a book signing in Toronto in 2010 as he spills a couple secrets of what it’s like to be an aspiring chef:

(Kev wasn’t at the book signing.)

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PART ONE: Choosing a Whetstone

Tools for The Discriminating Chef

Whetstones are often considered to be one of the best ways to sharpen a knife because the user has the most control over the angle and grit used. Once this method of sharpening is mastered, it can be both very effective and gentle. A whetstone is a sharpening method that uses natural stone or synthetic materials to sharpen a knife using friction. The first thing you have to do is choose the type of whetstone you want to use.

Choosing a Whetstone

There is a wide range of whetstones on the market, which can make the process of choosing one quite confusing. The four (4) most common types of whetstones are ceramic stones, diamond stones, oil stones and water stones.

Item41998 copy

Quick Cut Combo Stone (Item#41998 Canada/ Item# 41998 USA)

900.2002.21 copy

Water Stone with Stand (Item# 900.2002.21 Canada/Item #900.2002.21 USA)

The four types of stones…

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Where Food and History Meet: Michael W. Twitty’s Culinary Journey at Afroculinaria


At Afroculinaria, Michael W. Twitty serves up his own recipe of food blogging. The African American-Jewish culinary historian writes about African American foodways, the food culture and history of the American South, and the exploration of identity through cooking. His forthcoming book, The Cooking Gene, chronicles his search for a culinary homeland, retracing the steps of his family’s journey from Africa to America and from slavery to freedom, using food as his lens.

Michael — who was named a TED2016 Fellow and is speaking this week at TED2016: Dream in Vancouver, Canada — talks about his research and balancing his efforts for both his blog and his book.

Afroculinaria is a food blog, yet it’s so much more than that. It documents your personal culinary journey, the intersections of Africa and America, and food and history. Can you expand a bit on what you blog about?

There are food…

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Guest Interview: Estela D. Martinez

Arugula & Rocket

Estella Martinez SquareToday’s guest interview features the awe-inspiring Estela D. Martinez from Liberated Foods.

Estela is a self-taught cook who specialises in gluten-free and allergen-free cooking and baking. Since the birth of her now 14 year old daughter, who was born with over 50 different food allergies (eek!), Estela has become an expert in sourcing ingredients and creating recipes that not only avoid allergens, but also taste every bit as delicious as the “real” thing – and receive the approval of her three allergy-free children!!!

In case you missed it, you can find Estela’s Recipe for Gluten-Free Scones on our blog.

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Michael Gibney – Sous Chef (2014)

Katie Writes Stuff

18142414Continuing with my love of food writing I picked up Michael Gibney’s Sous Chef and liked it almost immediately. Gibney blends his journalistic style of writing into the Anthony Bourdain-world of being a chef that Gibney inhabits. This is by no means the first account of what it’s like to work in a kitchen of a restaurant, nor do I think it will be the last, but Gibney presents his story in a creative way telling the story in the form of “24-hours on the line.”

Gibney takes the reader through every stage of his day from ordering food to kitchen prep to staff tastings and finally closing and after work activities, giving a glimpse into the effect that the job can, and does have, on his personal life. Working such insane and unpredictable hours make it difficult to maintain friendships with people who don’t work in the industry. As…

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Why you should switch to olive oil


If you’re like me, you love butter. And why wouldn’t you? It’s tasty, convenient, and probably sitting on your kitchen counter right now. But today, I’m going to tell you why you should drop the butter, and make the switch to olive oil.

Andrea Consoli, professional chef and owner of Cooking Classes in Rome, uses olive oil in almost all of the dishes he serves.

“We call it here the Green Gold. Green because of its color, and gold because of its importance to the Italian cooking”


The tile outside Andrea Consoli’s kitchen represents the business he has created with his wife. To the right, his kitchen is bustling with guests cutting fresh bread for bruschetta and rolling handmade gnocchi.

Today, he told me, there are nearly 500 different types of olive trees.And if that doesn’t shock you, each type, he says, has an undeniably distinct taste according…

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