Thanksgiving update


In light of the unnecessary stress imposed upon us before Thanksgiving, this will be an unusually short message. Next week we’ll be back to our normal mode of delicious recipes and more detailed updates on December’s events.

1. HAPA Fusion event: Thank you for all of those who came! Your involvement and support means a lot to us, especially during this busy month of November. All of the events we catered could not have been successful with you!   The event was a great success; pictures should be up soon.

2. This week’s meeting is cancelled, due to, well, Thanksgiving break.

3. New Amsterdam Market: It happens roughly once a month and if you haven’t been yet, you MUST go to the next one on Dec. 20th. The best vendors in NY. I checked it out today and some highlights include: Sullivan St. Bakery, Porchetta (selling the famous porchetta sandwich), Luke’s Lobster (yes, they sell amazing lobster rolls), Taza Chocolate, The Bent Spoon (yummy artisan ice cream), Basis (butternut squash soup and the moistest pumpkin bread served with local yogurt and honey), and The Redhead (the last restaurant reviewed by Frank Bruni in the NYTimes, they were selling the raved bacon peanut brittle). And if there’s another incentive, you can practically eat an entire delicious meal from sampling around the entire market!

4. If you’re looking for a Sunday relax and unwind event, head down to Aroma Kitchen and Winebar:

Every Sunday from 5pm til midnight, Aroma Kitchen & Winebar (36 E. 4th St b/t Bowery & Lafayette) is offering four different food and wine specials at four different price points: For $10: Select from 10-12 of Aroma?s appetizers and light bites, including stuffed calamari, chatham cod ravioli, and warm beet salad, all for $10 and under. For $15: Sunday flight: 3 generous tastings of wine. For $25: 3 course prix-fixe menu including appetizer, main and dessert. For $40: 3-course prix fixe menu + Sunday flight.

This is it for tonight! Again, we’ll be back with a better edition next time, I promise =)

Have a good night and eat well on Thanksgiving!


Rustic Apple Tarts

Hi all, here’s the recipe for the rustic apple tarts we made for Earl Jam!

All Butter Crust:

(adapted from

This recipe makes 1 pâte brisée crust, enough for one tart. If you are making a pie with a bottom and top crust, double this recipe and form two discs of dough instead of one.


  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 8 Tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, very-cold, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar (increase to 1 1/2 teaspoons if for a sweet recipe)
  • 2 to 4 Tbsp ice water, very cold

1 Start by cutting the sticks of butter into 1/2-inch cubes and placing in the freezer for at least 15 minutes (preferably longer) so that they become thoroughly chilled.

2 In a food processor, combine flour, salt, and sugar, pulse to mix. Add butter and pulse 6 to 8 times, until mixture resembles coarse meal, with pea size pieces of butter. Add water 1 Tablespoon at a time, pulsing until mixture just begins to clump together. If you pinch some of the crumbly dough and it holds together, it’s ready, if not, add a little more water and pulse again.

3 Remove dough from machine and place on a clean surface. Carefully shape into a discs. Do not over-knead the dough! You should still be able to see little bits of butter in the dough. These bits of butter are what will allow the result crust to be flaky. Sprinkle the disc with a little flour on all sides. Wrap the disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour.

4 Remove the crust disk from the refrigerator. Let sit at room temperature for 5-10 minutes. Sprinkle some flour on top of the disk.

Apple Walnut Filling:


  • 1 Pâte Brisée (tart dough) for a 10-inch tart (see all butter crust recipe) or 1 packaged, flat pie crust
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped, or 1/2 teaspoon dried (we actually completely forgot to add the thyme, but it turned out great without it!)
  • 2 large granny smith apples (or other good cooking apples such as jonagold or fuji), peeled, cored, chopped
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice (optional)
  • Goat Cheese to crumble on top (optional)
  • 1 egg, water for egg wash.


1 Toss the walnuts, thyme, chopped apples, and sugar together in a medium size bowl. As you are working with the apples (chopping them, mixing them in with the other ingredients), if you want, you can squeeze a little lemon juice on them to help keep them from discoloring. Cover the mixture with plastic wrap while you prepare the crust.

2 Preheat oven to 350°F. Roll out pastry dough to 1/8th in thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut small circles in the dough. Roll out the circles once more to get them a little thinner, so that you can pinch up the edges, but not so thin that it wont hold the filling. Place a small amount of filling directly in the center of the dough, fold up edges in a circular motion and pinch together, leaving the top open, and the filling exposed. Whip 1 egg with a few tablespoons of water and brush over the edges.


3 Bake for 45 minutes to an hour, until crust is nicely browned. If at any time it looks like the walnuts are getting a little burnt, you can lightly tent a piece of aluminum foil over the center.

4 Remove from oven. Immediately crumble goat cheese over the top, and serve warm!


Greenborough Dinner

Hi Foodies!

So The Culinary Society is at it again! We have been invited to cater an intimate dinner for some people at Greenborough. We will be working Friday (11/13) on a completely vegetarian and organic dinner complete with dessert and two drinks. Here’s what’s on the menu:

Wassail (an old-fashioned cider)

Savory Lemonade (with lavender, rosemary, and thyme)

French Breakfast Radishes with Butter and Sea Salt

Buttery Sweet Potato Knot Rolls

Chilled Beet and caramelized Onion Salad with Feta Cheese

Creamy Carrot Ginger Bisque

Pomegranite Kale with Pan-Roasted Pecans

Brown Sugar Baked Sweet Potatos and Acorn Squash

Moroccan Spiced Spaghetti Squash

Ginger Butter Cake with Poached Pears

We got the dinner covered, but we’re looking into a little after-cooking party. Maybe milkshakes and burgers? (To celebrate the fact that we are all gluttonous carnivores!) We’ll also be discussing the HAPA Fusion event.

Ginger Tea Recipe

This seemed to be a popular recipe at our tea event, so here it is!

Ginger Tea:


3 1/4 C ginger, 1/2 C fresh chopped ginger, cinnamon stick, 4 tbsp. loose black tea leaves (I like my tea dark), 1/2 C milk, 1/2 C condensed milk


1. Bring water and ginger to a boil. Stir in tea and cinnamon and cover. Let steep 5 minutes.

2. Stir in the two milks. Then pour through a sieve into a blender.

3. Blend until foamy and pour into mugs. (Careful hot liquids expand in the blender) May be sweetened with more condensed milk. It’s really good over ice too!

Earl Jam Thursday!

Earl Jam is today!  We’ll be catering with a $350 budget, which means awesome food like chocolate covered strawberries, brownies with mascarpone frosting, savory apple tarts, macaroons, and more.  If you’d like to help cook we’ll be in the Lerner kitchens from noon all the way until showtime.

Here’s the description from the Facebook event:

Jazz and Dessert with Community Impact!

Community Impact invites you to its 5th Annual EARL JAM featuring Corey King’s band Rocklike

Earl Jam will take place on Thursday, November 5, 2009, from 9:30pm-11pm at Lerner Party Space.

King, a graduate from The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York City, has played with Mos Def, Lauren Hill and Wyclef Jean, Jason Moran, Dave Binney, Bilal, Elizabeth and the Catapult, The Mettawee River Theater company under Ralph Lee, and has recorded for Mark Ronson. Corey has also performed with rap artist Ludacris on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Saturday Night Live, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live! and The David Letterman Show.

* Come enjoy great music with fellow Columbians

* Free Dessert (provided by the Culinary Society) and giveaways

* Learn more about CI’s 25 different volunteer service programs

* Dress to impress

Food and Wine Show

I was lucky enough to be able to snag a ticket to the 2nd annual Food and Wine Show this year, so I’m gonna give everyone a quick run-through of the big Food Network personalities.

Giada de Laurentis: Genuinely fantastic and a beautiful lady. We talked about Zeppole and dorm life. She also gave me a high-five :)

Paula Deen: Great with crowds, not so much one-on-one… unless you’re Southern.

Rachel Ray: Despite what everyone says, I like her. She was really nice and she called everybody “sweetie.”

Chef Duff and Mary Alice: Genuinely the coolest people at the show. And they knew it!

Bobby Flay: I’ve always thought he was mean and I was right! Now I have a reason to dislike him.

Susie: Judge from the Next Food Network Star and Head of Marketing, she was actually the nicest person there.

I also attended a Mario Batali event (Sorry no pictures). He spoke on food and the restaurant business. His latest work? Working on a grocery store (to be located on 23rd and 7th) which will feature mini-restaurants for each department (i.e. bread, poultry, fish…)

White Wine Sorbet Recipe

Here’s a fantastic recipe I created :) I also made a red wine ice cream, but I didn’t particularly like it, although it did taste like Taro. I’ll work on that one. Meanwhile, here’s the recipe for White Wine Sorbet


1 bottle riesling white wine, sugar to taste (I used about 1 cup), 1 C water, 8 black peppercorns, 1 T whole cloves, 1 T whole allspice, 2 sticks cinnamon, rind of one lemon, and juice of one lemon.


Combine all ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. (This is to cook the alcohol to reduce the freezing temperature.) Cover with a lid and let it sit, off of the heat, for thirty minutes.

Prepare an ice bath in a large bowl. Get a bowl that is smaller than the ice bath bowl and a fine sieve. Pour the sorbet liquid through the sieve into the small bowl and place the small bowl atop the ice bath. Let cool for 30 minutes.

Transfer to a ice cream processor and process according to directions.

Freeze for 5 hours and eat!!

Amazing Cakes!

So I’m a pastry chef from San Diego and I find time to cook whenever I’m not going to class… I also happen to be part of the Columbia Culinary Society, which is amazing!! Haha! Here are some of my latest installments:

1. My Fourth of July Cake – A Coconut Rum Cake with fruit “fireworks”

2. My Mile-High Chocolate Cake with homemade chocolate mint lollipops

3. Felix and my Queen of Sheeba Cake with sugar thread

For recipes, add a comment and I’ll tell you :)