Save Your Fingers (Forks/Spoons)

Heres the thing with Camp Pinecliffe: There are many many common bonds and memories between the different generations of campers, be it the songs, the Mainbunk, the endurance test…but the strongest traditions probably revolve around the food. Turkey dinner, pizza night with soda cap bracelets, Brookside, the Gazebo, lobster, cookouts, sugar and butter, peanut butter, corn night, milk and cookies…I mean really the list goes on and on and on.

Honestly, it’s probably a miracle that my parents sent my sisters and I away and each summer when we came back our clothes were even baggier on us than when we left. (I guess as active 8 year olds anything is possible. We have Landsports and Crystal Lake to thank for that).

This weekend was obviously no different.  We packed the car on Friday and made sure that the NY Trash was conveniently placed for easy access. By the way, thank you, Mom, for supplying the entire camp with enough NY Trash for 95 years!! Before we even arrived at camp, we had to stop for lobster and Brookside. Thanks to the girls at Brookside, we had the most incredible (and by the way, mayo-free) lobster roll at Ken’s Cove. I have to admit, we stopped at The Lobster Pound first, but they weren’t serving food that early in the day. The lobster roll from Ken’s was refreshing and delicious.

The logical next choice was, of course, Brookside. Although Brookside no longer has Moose Tracks or Gifford’s ice cream, I’m certain that everyone was enjoying the coffee heath bar and Maine Survivor flavors. Years later, and we were happy to hear that the Pinecliffe campers haven’t changed…we all still ask 47029347207 questions about the different flavors. AND Julie finally learned why our favorite ice cream placed is named Brookside!

Once at camp the eating obviously didn’t stop. We had turkey dinner, lobster, corn, sticky buns, milk and cookies, and of course…more Brookside. With each meal, as we recounted our many Pinecliffe memories, the laughing never stopped. These meals and the associated Pinecliffe traditions confirm that food brings people together (maybe not in these excess amounts…). You might not be able to make artwork with your corn cobs, or feast on Angelo’s cookies in Mainbunk as you watch every single Camp Pinecliffe video…but if you do ever find yourself in or around 04040 make sure to make your way to Ken’s and Brookside. And in the meantime, enjoy good food with the people you love!

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Neon Cake

Last Thursday was my best friends birthday so I obviously had to bake something exciting. I scrolled through my Pinterest, but I ultimately settled with making an absurdly large and ridiculously bright birthday cake. Side note: I also made a batch of pretzel and nutella brownies because you can’t just take a slice out of a cake to try it, and I knew if I baked everyone would want to snack on something sweet.

My college kitchen was not outfitted with the baking tools to make anything elaborate so I managed to make this cake very simple. I used boxed cake mixes (2 boxes of white vanilla cake mix), vanilla frosting (3 containers), neon food coloring, and lots of candy.  Here are some pictures of the cake! Thanks to Brittany and Adina for helping me and a HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO HAYLEY!!

Sunday Nights Food Crawl

I am very lucky to have friends who seek out and appreciate food adventures just as much as I do. On Sunday night Rachel and I tried Ippudo in NYC. Ippudo is a Japanese ramen noodle restaurant in NYC’s East Village that has been written up several times as being the best place for Japanese style noodles in the city. Rachel is my go-to foodie for everything. We originally tried Momofuku Noodle Bar together so there was no way either one of us was going to Ippudo without the other. Rachel, being the great person she is, put our name down at Ippudo and waited over an hour for our table…I had the easy job of just showing up. We both planned ahead and were good girls and got our workout in on Sunday so we could stuff our faces in the evening (so thank you Jenny for killing me on Sunday…always love when I feel like I am going to die 30 seconds into your spin class and have the pleasure of experiencing it for an additional 45 minutes).

We couldn’t stop commenting on the restaurants atmosphere. We loved sitting at a large communal table, but even more we LOVED the food. We asked our waitress what the best and most popular dishes were, and without any hesitation ordered whatever she said (a very risky move considering I don’t eat “weird” or raw meats). The ordering was a major success. This is what we had (and I would suggest you order the same):

Yamitsuki Goma Kyuri: Japanese cucumber seasoned with Ippudo’s original sesame oil sauce

Hirata Buns (Pork): Steamed buns filled with either pork, chicken, or eggplant & eringi mushrooms served with Ippudo’s original spicy buns sauce

Miso Ramen: Soy bean paste flavored noodle in the original “Tonkotsu” (pork) based soup with pork chashu, cabbage, menma, ginger, and scallions

Akamaru Modern:
The original silky “Tonkotsu” (pork) soup noodles topped with Ippudo’s secret “Umami Dama” miso paste, pork chashu, cabage, sesame kikurage mushrooms, scallions, and fragrant garlic oil

We left feeling so full (logical) but our food adventure wasn’t over (also logical). Rachel mentioned that she had heard of a great ice cream place around the corner. That to me was an obvious next stop. With all the intentions in the world to just try a few flavors we headed one block east to Sundaes and Cones. After sampling the corn, sesame, green tea, and pistachio flavors (I told you I love sampling every flavor possible) we decided we could squish a little something sweet into our stuffed stomachs. We split a scoop of the pistachio. I mean it was the creamiest most delicious ice cream ever! I have plans to return and try more flavors in the near future with Miranda (my other foodie adventurer and connoisseur).

My fat Sunday was delicious and fun! There are many more foodie adventures ahead but between now and the Sports Bra Challenge I guess I need to keep them to a minimum 🙂

Ithaca Farmers Market

Happy May!!

The best thing about Ithaca in May is that the Farmers Market is open Saturdays AND Sundays (okay and maybe also the weather changes a bit). The Ithaca Farmers Market is very different from other farmers markets…although there are plenty of produce stands, the market has tons and tons of prepared food that is absolutely delicious. Year after year between August-November and April-May, I make a point to spend my weekend mornings browsing and eating my way through the Ithaca Farmers Market.

My favorite stands are Macro Mamas, Silver Spoon, and Solaz.

Macro Mamas

Macro Mamas is run by a group of women. They consistently prepare amazingly delicious food using in season, fresh, and local foods. The corn fritters and peanut lime noodles are delicious as well as the many baked goods; however, my favorite is the sampler platter. This past weekend the sampler platter included field greens with lemon poppy seed dressing, peanut lime noodles, pressed cabbage with chives and parsley, kale with sweet onions sherry vinegar and walnuts, baked cauliflower with remoulade and herbed bread crumbs, nishimi rutabaga carrot parsnip and purple onion, asparagus with licorice radish dressing, and polenta with herbs de provence. ABSOLUTLEY FANTASTIC!!!

Silver Spoon

Robert is the chef in my sorority house, which makes me love visiting his stand every time I am at the farmers market. I am especially fond of Roberts’s vegetarian soups, but his granola, ice cream, and mac and cheese are also to die for!  I recently tried is white bean and cabbage soup…SO GOOD!

Solaz

Solaz is the burrito stand at the market. Their specialty is the breakfast burrito with cheese, eggs, beans, and salsa. There is also a special burrito that includes home fries, sausage, and cream cheese. I unfortunately have not tried the special burrito because I have a slight (or extreme) fear of cream cheese. There are also chicken burrito and vegetable burrito options. I have tried many many times to replicate the breakfast burrito and have failed many many times. It is absolutely irresistible.

I am going to miss the farmers market when I graduate, but I am happy to have taken full advantage of it over the last 4 years. If anyone reading this has not had the chance to go yet, I will be more than happy to entertain you on the necessary eating tour!

Nobu in Ithaca

My sincerest apologies to you if you have a keen fondness for or an emotional attachment towards Media Monday, because this Monday you are getting a dose of Tasty Tuesday.

Last night I attended an incredible event at the Hotel School organized and hosted by several friends and classmates. Chef Matt Hoyle from Nobu 57 in NYC prepared an Asian fusion meal, utilizing students as his sous chefs. My friends enrolled in the Guest Chefs class either played a back-of-house or front-of-house role. They spent the past few days (and months) slaving away in the kitchen, designing the space, and organizing and coordinating the event logistics.

The event started at 6pm with a cocktail hour in the Hotel School’s Beck Center. The hors d’oeuvres included king crab tacos, short ribs with onion salsa, salmon shiitake with yuzu soy garlic, and cauliflower and asparagus yasai zuke. With the exception of the salmon, that I didn’t try (I don’t eat raw or smoked fish), the hors d’oeuvres were delicious. The short ribs were phenomenal!

After cocktail hour we took our seats in the Park Atrium which had been transformed from a school into a beautiful dining atmosphere. Over the next 3 hours, we enjoyed several courses. The menu paired classic Nobu flavors with several white and red wines. Here is the menu from the meal.

Although this was not my first time eating Chef Hoyle’s food, I was still captivated by his ability to take simple proteins and enhance the flavor of the food with his combination of sauces. The wasabi sauce on the lobster was delicious as well as the caramel on the dessert (it was brought in from Japan for the chef to use). Each wine pairing enhanced the flavor of the course. The only wine I did not enjoy was the second chardonnay served with the lobster. It was too sweet.

All in all it was a great event with great people and food. Maybe Drew Nieporent should consider Ithaca for his next Nobu…

Family Line Baking

In the last couple of weeks I have come to realize that everything I do is prefaced with  “this is the last time _____”. One of my favorite activities every semester is baking with my family line for our sorority bakesale. We have two bakesales every year: the first is Trick or TrΣΔΤ during Halloween weekend, and the second is ΣΔΤ All Day on April 20th. Last Thursday my family line got together one last time and baked up a storm. I forced us to choose recipes from my baking to do list. As usual, our baked goods were among the first to sell out…I am VERY VERY PROUD!!!

We are not the type of family to just bake a batch of cookies or brownies (however, we do always make a batch of cookie-brownies just for fun). We like to get creative to ensure that we have the best time (and the best goodies). No baking playdate is complete without the rest of us yelling at Sofie and Carly for ruining everything they touch (my nickname “Kitchen Bitch” is 100% justifiable). We have made cupcake cones, tie-dye brownies, candy corn rice krispies, candy corn chocolate strawberries, rice krispie treats, and tombstone brownies.

This past Thursday we made the peanut-butter pretzel bars and the garbage brownies. Both were absolutely delicious! I enjoyed the peanut-butter pretzel bars more because I love the combination of sweet with salty, and I’m not a HUGE chocolate dessert lover. To make the garbage brownies super simple, we used store-bought cookie dough and fudge brownie mix. To make things more delicious we substituted regular Oreos for double-stuffed. Super yummy and super easy! I can’t wait to try more recipes on my dessert to do list!

Steph, Sofie, and Marissa: you three were missed! Can’t wait for Sofie and Marissa to get back from abroad…baking date in NYC please!?

Bake Up. Eat Up.