I recently discovered this great new recipe website Gojee. It’s pretty genius because they allow you to type in what ingredients you have and then they offer a number of recipes using those ingredients. But honestly, what I really like about it is the amazing imagery. I pretty much have been choosing what to cook based on the prettiest pictures.. how amaz do these clams look.. I think I will make this tonight!


When the Moon Hits your Eye…

The best pizza we had in Italy had a super thin crust and was topped with cheese and arugula. Thats it. No sauce, no meat.. just cheese and arugula. That’s AMORE. Of course this can not be replicated for many reasons.

  1. We are not in Italy
  2. You probably don’t own a pizza oven
  3. Who knows how many different kinds of cheese they threw on that bad boy

But below is an easy recipe for a similar pizza (which im sure won’t even compare):

Three-Cheese Pizza with Onion, Sage, and Arugula


  • frozen pre-made pizza dough (since I am sure your not that ambitious)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 lb Italian Fontina cut into 1/2-inch pieces (2/3 cup)
  • 2 oz Gorgonzola dolce, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion (1 medium)
  • 6 large fresh sage leaves, thinly sliced crosswise (1 tablespoon)
  • 1/2 oz finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (1/4 cup)
  • 1/4 lb loosely packed baby arugula leaves (4 cups)
  • Special equipment: a pizza stone

Preheat oven to 500°F. The trick is to preheat the pizza stone in the over for an hour.

Coat a round baking sheet with ample amounts of both flour and cornmeal (enough so dough won’t stick and can easily slide off). Holding one edge of dough in the air with both hands, carefully and quickly move hands around edge of dough, allowing weight of dough to stretch round to roughly 10 inches. Lay dough flat on baking sheet. Continue to work edge of dough with your fingers, stretching it into a 14-inch round.

Brush dough with oil, then scatter Fontina and Gorgonzola over dough. Scatter onion and sage leaves over cheese. Sprinkle pizza with Parmigiano-Reggiano. Carefully (with oven mits!) line up far edge of baking sheet with far edge of stone in oven and tilt gently to start pizza moving until it is transferred completely to the stone. Bake until crust is golden and cheese is bubbling, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove pizza from oven, then top with arugula.

Smooth Sailing

I have been pretending its summer for a few weeks now. My favorite breakfast in the summer is a smoothie. So basically I have been on the hunt around Manhattan to find the best smoothie.. I haven’t yet, but below is a delish recipe for a raspberry peach smoothie (one of my fav combos).

Nicole’s Raspberry Peach Smoothie


(serves 1 very hungry person or 2 normal people)

  • 2 ripe peaches, pitted and cut into wedges
  • 1 cup milk (or water)
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar (or 1 tbsp honey)
  • 1/8 teaspoon almond or vanilla extract

The trick is to freeze the peaches in a zip lock bag for a few hours. Blend peaches with remaining ingredients in a blender until smooth. Thin with more water if necessary. You can play with any of the amounts or kinds of ingredients and it will still come out great.. thats my favorite part about smoothies!

Wafles & Dinges

Food trucks are the latest obsession in NYC and my absolute favorite is the Wafles & Dinges truck. Their specialty is the Liège waffle which they call the “other” Belgian waffle. Its crispy on the outside and with a chewy center.  The secret ingredient is pearl sugar. The pearls burst and caramelize when the dough hits the waffle iron, resulting in a dense, sugary waffle that’s rich in flavor.. yum.

I usually get vanilla ice cream and strawberries as my topping but they also offer this special Spekuloos spread that tastes like gram crackers – amazing.

You can locate them by clicking here.

My Favorite Cocktails

Pear Crisp: Vanilla Infused Rum, Pear Purée, Lemon, Prosecco

I typically like anything made with Absolute Vanilla, but I had never tried Vanilla Rum. Rouge Tomate specializes in creative cocktails.. my favorite being their Pear Crisp. It’s naturally sweet from the pears and vanilla rum but very light and fresh because of the lemon and prosecco. I’m not sure of the exact measurements but I’m sure any combination of the below ingredients would turn out delish! This should be shaken, not stirred.

Cranberry Flower: Hendrick’s Gin, Muddled Cranberry Compote, Lemon Juice

Beauty and Essex is so chic and fun.. and on top of it they have delicious cocktails made with fresh ingredients. I am typically a gin and tonic girl in the summer and love cranberry vodkas in the winter. They came up with the PERFECT combo. The Cranberry Flower is light and refreshing like and gin and tonic but has the bitter bite from the cranberries.. they also dropped in whole cranberries that were soaked in syrup.. a nice touch. This should be shaken, not stirred. Here is a nice recipe for Cranberry Comopote.

On a side note, if you haven’t been to Beauty and Essex I highly recommend stopping by.. you have to go through a pawn shop and there’s a back door that opens to a three level restaurant/lounge. It’s absolutely gorgeous inside, the food is really fun and the best part is they serve free campaign in the women’s bathroom.. score.

Roast Beet, Goat Cheese & Arugula Salad.. yumm

My favorite lunch lately has been a goat cheese and beet salad. Its filling, healthy and has a fair share of sodium (which I crave in every meal). Below is an amazing recipe, it calls for roasting your own beets.. but honestly I am usually lazy and just buy pre-roasted beets.

Roast Beet and Fresh Arugula Salad with Goat Cheese and Balsamic Glaze

Ingredients (serves 6 as a side dish):

3      Large red beets

3      Large golden beets

8     Ounces crumbled goat cheese +/- (or if using sliced goat cheese, as served at Alici’s, use 12 oz round)

3      Cups washed, small, tender leaves of arugula (you may substitute mesclun or any baby greens)

3      Teaspoons champagne vinegar

3      Teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

3      Teaspoons olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

2     Tablespoons balsamic vinegar glaze (purchase pre-made from a grocery store)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash and wrap each beet in aluminum foil. Set in a roasting pan lined with aluminum foil. Roast for one hour.

In meantime, whisk together the champagne vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Toss together with the arugula and arrange on a serving platter. Set aside.

After one hour, remove the beets from oven and check with a fork for doneness. If tender when prodded with a fork, allow beets to cool in the pan atop the stove, still covered with the foil, for 15-20 minutes. Open the the foil and cool for a five more minutes, then peel and slice the beets into 1/4 inch rounds. Arrange beets on the platter, atop the arugula. Crumble goat cheese on top of the beets and drizzle with balsamic glaze. Serve warm with a chilled, dry prosecco.

Recipe Source: http://www.thegardenerseden.com

Crosby Street Hotel’s Carrot Soup

We went to the Crosby Street Hotel yesterday for lunch and I had the most DELISH carrot soup of my life.. and trust me.. I am a carrot soup connoisseur. Their version is described as “Carrot, lemongrass, toasted coconut soup”. I obviously can’t find that exact recipe but I have posted below one that seems similar:

Curry Carrot-Ginger Soup

Servings: Serves 6


* 2 Tbsp. olive oil

* 1 stalk lemongrass

* 1 medium onion , chopped

* 2 stalks celery , chopped (1/2 cup)

* 2 cloves garlic , minced

* 1 piece (2 inches) fresh gingerroot , peeled and finely chopped

* 10 to 12 carrots (about 2 1/2 pounds), scrubbed and sliced into 1/2-inch pieces

* 1 Tbsp. curry powder

* 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock

* 1/2 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk

* Salt

* Freshly ground pepper

* 3/4 cup shredded (unsweetened or sweetened) coconut , toasted (optional)


In a large, heavy saucepan or stockpot, heat oil over medium heat. Smash bottom end of lemongrass (about 3 inches) with handle end of a knife. Add lemongrass, onion, celery, garlic, and ginger. Sauté until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add carrots and curry powder and stir to coat vegetables. Add stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 25 minutes, or until carrots are very tender. Skim foam and fat from top.

Transfer from heat. Remove lemongrass and discard. Puree soup in batches in a food processor or blender (or puree in the pot with a hand blender). Return to pan and stir in coconut milk. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon into bowls and garnish with toasted coconut, if desired.

If you don’t like carrot soup.. I would still highly recommend the Crosby Street Hotel’s restaurant.. even if it’s just to see the whimsical decor: