sacramento connect » Food & Wine sacramento blogs & community news around sacramento california Sat, 25 Apr 2015 13:21:25 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Marionberry Swirl Pancakes Sat, 25 Apr 2015 10:00:18 +0000 You guys. It’s Saturday. That means it’s PANCAKE time!! Have you ever heard of a marionberry? No? You’re not alone. Until I visited Harry & David last year I had no idea either. A marionberry is a kind of blackberry that grows in Oregon and it makes AMAZING jams and preserves. Also? It makes amazing pancakes. […]

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Double Chocolate Funfetti Cookies Sat, 25 Apr 2015 08:36:06 +0000 {continue reading}]]> 0 Gluten Free/Grain Free Bean Pie Recipe Sat, 25 Apr 2015 03:55:44 +0000 0 The Center for the Arts presents: A Very Special SOLO Evening with Joan Armatrading Fri, 24 Apr 2015 13:25:09 +0000 0 Dining News: ‘Great Pancakes’ at Bacon & Butter Fri, 24 Apr 2015 04:16:55 +0000 0 Japanese antique lights at Kodo Arts Show on May 2-10 Thu, 23 Apr 2015 17:27:11 +0000 0 Farro Salad Thu, 23 Apr 2015 17:04:00 +0000 0 How To Mess Up A Recipe, Badly: #Recipe Thu, 23 Apr 2015 11:00:39 +0000 How to mess up a recipe? Well, that’s easy.  Just don’t follow some simple rules. The thought for this post started when I was working a very simple recipe for my homemade crepes. I thought I had it down pat. I made a mess of it instead.  It’s no secret that I love playing around […]

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Easy Tiramisu Mousse Thu, 23 Apr 2015 10:00:23 +0000 mThis Easy Tiramisu Mousse contains my favorite part of the Tiramisu: the mousse! I’m all about the mousse (no cake). Watching a group of food/dessert bloggers eat dessert at a restaurant is like watching vultures attack. It’s hysterical. But I digress. If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen that I was in […]

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Clean Strawberry Poppy Seed Crumble Thu, 23 Apr 2015 07:42:50 +0000 {continue reading}]]> 0 Dining News: Kru to Cohabitate with OBO’ Italian by Selland’s Thu, 23 Apr 2015 05:17:56 +0000 0 Wine Wednesday: Consumer Wine Awards Tasting Wed, 22 Apr 2015 19:54:19 +0000 I’m definitely not the wine drinker that can discern a bottle of 88-point wine from one that is far off the radar of any wine rating agency, but I definitely do know what I like and don’t like. And that’s how I found myself sitting in a large convention hall staring at glasses of wine at 8am on a quiet Saturday morning.    I signed up to be a taster for the Consumer Wine Awards, an annual competition that has normal non-professional wine enthusiasts judge wines on their drinkability rather than a 100-point scale. Signing up for the event was a breeze. I went to the website, took the “My Vinotype” test, and then filled out a small form where I chose what wines I’d be interested in tasting (Roses, Ports & Fruity whites please!). I received an email a few weeks later stating that I had been selected for a morning panel, and I paid $25 in support of the event to secure my tasting spot. Then all I had to do was show up, sip (not drink) 20 glasses of wine, and share my thoughts using a simple 8-point scale!   The judging formula was simple. Take a taste […]

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Happy Hump Day! Sock Animal Mania! Wed, 22 Apr 2015 16:32:30 +0000 I just thought I’d share some pictures with you to brighten your day today with these cuties~ Laurel spent hours making these for her high school senior project. She wanted to donate them to somewhere that benefits kids, so she is donating them to Lilu to sell at their annual fashion bag show on May 2. (Laurel has also enjoyed being a member of Lilu, a teen-run non-profit that meets throughout the year to create and sew one-of-a-kind handbags to sell at their annual fundraiser for the Wind Youth Service Center. The Wind Youth Service Center provides outreach, social services, and emergency shelter for homeless youth, ages 12-24.) Laurel and Quill will be writing name and description tags for each of these animals, so stay tuned and I will update this post with their bios! ]]> 0 Dining News: About a Bite Bakery Coming to K Street Wed, 22 Apr 2015 05:03:56 +0000 0 6 Tips for a Successful Spring Detox [Lean Up Soup Recipe] Wed, 22 Apr 2015 00:40:12 +0000 Ahhh, wake up! Spring is here. It’s time to get moving! I don’t know about you, but during winter, I seem to hibernate in my house. Usually around 6 pm every night, I put my pajamas on and just stay in for the night. Nothing can get me out of the house when it’s freezing! So when spring arrives, I [...]

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]]> 0 Earth Day Eats Wed, 22 Apr 2015 00:23:19 +0000 0 15 Most Popular Cowtown Eats Posts of March 2015 Tue, 21 Apr 2015 20:00:00 +0000 0 Gooey Butter Bars Tue, 21 Apr 2015 13:53:34 +0000 Continue reading ]]> 0 Chocolate Granola Bark Tue, 21 Apr 2015 10:00:13 +0000 If you make a candy out of chocolate and granola that means it’s healthy, right? I’ve discovered a new love: Barre classes. Have you ever done them? It’s kind of like pilates but a lot of the class uses a ballet bar. Guess what? It’s freaking amazing. I leave and I feel all glowy and stretchy and…happy. […]

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Peanut Butter & Jam Thumbprint Cookies Tue, 21 Apr 2015 07:18:52 +0000 {continue reading}]]> 0 Dining News: What You’ll Pay to Drink at the IMAX Tue, 21 Apr 2015 06:20:06 +0000 ]]> 0 Giveaway!! Get Gluten Free Delivered Right to Your Door with Send Me Gluten FREE! Tue, 21 Apr 2015 04:28:08 +0000 ]]> 0 Win Free Tickets to Fairytale Town’s Dessert & Wine Tasting Fundraiser on Thursday Mon, 20 Apr 2015 20:00:00 +0000 0 IKEA Mon, 20 Apr 2015 07:02:00 +0000 People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) was able to convince them to leave out all animal-based ingredients.

I stopped in at IKEA in West Sacramento over the weekend to see if they were available yet. Sure enough, a sign over the hot food section said "Vegetable Balls." I waited in line, noticing that there was also an asparagus salad that appeared to be vegan, but I held out for the vegetable balls. They were served ten to the plate in a sweet potato and cauliflower sauce, along with mixed vegetables consisting of squash, eggplant, and red bell pepper. A smaller serving is available on their kids' menu.

The veggie balls were actually pretty tasty, especially with the delicious sauce. They weren't a nondescript brown mass like most meatballs are (vegan or otherwise), but had whole peas, corn kernels, and other vegetable bits rolled into them. I ate every bite. Now if they'd only start serving a vegan dessert!

Eventually, IKEA will offer these Grönsaksbullar in their frozen food section, but they didn't have them yet when I was there. I don't know if they'll sell that wonderful sweet potato and cauliflower sauce to go with them or not.

More information about IKEA's restaurant is available at

Ikea Restaurant on Urbanspoon]]> 0
Dining News: Proposed Bill to Allow Alcohol on ‘Bike Buses’ Mon, 20 Apr 2015 05:02:18 +0000 0 Carrot Cake Bran Muffins Mon, 20 Apr 2015 04:35:36 +0000 {continue reading}]]> 0 Chile-Garlic Broiled Salmon with Ginger Yogurt Sauce Sun, 19 Apr 2015 23:09:00 +0000

Last night, Mr.S and I had dinner at a small restaurant in the SOMA district of San Francisco, called Fringale.  I had dined there about 5-6 years ago with my friend Grace and had really enjoyed my meal there, so I talked Mr.S. into going back there to dine.  I had had a shitstorm of a week, seriously of epic proportions- my mom passed away, some horrid delinquent went through my neighborhood slashing tires and keying cars (my car was one of the ones that got hit) and to top it off- in the middle of the night, some jerk did a major hit and run on my rental car.  Like I said, shitstorm of epic proportions.  I was beginning to feel a lot like Job.  Anyhow in an effort to clear my mind and calm my nerves, I thought Fringale would be a nice place to grab a pleasant meal of French comfort food. WRONG.

The gentleman behind the bar, that greeted us when we arrived, seemed very friendly and sat us at a nice 2-top by the window.  We had a foie with quince jam appetizer that was okay (Mulvaney's does it better) and a calamari la plancha dish, which was nice but not as memorable as when I had it during my last visit.  It really needed seasoning.  Anyhow, things were fine until we got our entrees.  Both of us ordered the sea bass, which was supposed to be served over a potato puree with artichokes. What we ended up with was potato puree sloppily plopped in a bowl with bits of artichoke and some kind of red broth (hard to tell if it was a tomato or red pepper based broth). On top was a piece of sea bass about  1.5 inches wide and 5 inches long.  This is THE most overcooked piece of fish I have ever eaten. It was dry as the Sahara and tough. Mr.S. gacked on his too but he hates to send things back. So he cut his up and tried to have it absorb some of the red liquid it was swimming in. I had had such a craptastic week that I couldn't deal with it. I very politely signaled the waiter over and explained what the situation was.  His response was to ask Mr.S if his fish too was overly dry.  Mr.S. advised him it was. So he took (only) my plate back to the kitchen.  What? Anyhow, a few minutes later he returned, handed me a menu and brusquely advised me that, "the chef always prepares the fish that way and no one has ever complained." He then informed me that I should choose something else.  At this point I'm a bit perturbed. After the horrible week I'd had, the LAST thing I needed was this snooty French waiter being a dick to me.  I really wanted to tell him that if that's how his chef ALWAYS cooks his fish, overdone to the point that it was not consumable, then that was a sad testament to his skills.  However, at the risk of ruining Mr.S's night too, I ordered the mussels.  I mean really...who can f*ck up mussels, right? The mussels arrived and they were fine. We opted to have dessert elsewhere and I mentally crossed Fringale off my list of restaurants to return to or recommend,

Anyhow, I thought I'd share a fish recipe that we make at our house often.  I ran across it by happenstance-- one of those emailed recipes from Tasting Table.  It's quite good, tasty with or without the ginger yogurt sauce and very hard to screw up (take note, Mr. Fringale chef).

Chile-Garlic Broiled Salmon with Ginger Yogurt Salmon (from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen)

Nonstick cooking spray
Four 6-ounce salmon fillets
1 tablespoon chile-garlic paste ( sambal oelek)
1 tablespoon white miso paste
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon maple syrup
For Sauce:
¼ cup reduced-fat plain Greek yogurt
½ teaspoon chile-garlic sauce ( sambal oelek)
½ teaspoon low-sodium soy sauce 
½ teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1 scallion, thinly sliced on a bias
1. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly coat the foil with cooking spray. Place the salmon fillets on top. 
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the chile-garlic sauce, miso and maple syrup. Divide the mixture over the top of each salmon fillet, spreading it to coat the tops and sides easily.
3. Adjust the oven rack so it is 5 inches from the broiler element and heat the broiler to high. Broil the salmon until the tops of the fillets are browned and sizzling and the center of each fillet gives slightly to firm pressure, 8½ to 9 minutes. (The sauce gets a crispy, dark look to it as it caramelizes.)  Remove from the oven and set aside to rest.
4. While the salmon cooks, make the sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, chile-garlic sauce, soy sauce and ginger.
5. Place 1 salmon fillet on each plate and serve with a dollop of the ginger yogurt sauce and sprinkled with scallions.
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CATS’ “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet” is a ‘must-see’ local production Sun, 19 Apr 2015 15:31:40 +0000 0 Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio: #Wine Sun, 19 Apr 2015 11:00:34 +0000 Spring arrived much too early in Northern California this year. It was another year of little rain and a drought that seems without end. Regardless, life goes on and we spent the weekend setting up our patio. It’s a place we greatly enjoy on warm spring and summer nights. After all the work was complete, […]

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Giant Strawberry Cinnamon Roll Cake Sun, 19 Apr 2015 10:00:29 +0000 Sometimes you want a showstopper breakfast. This Giant Strawberry Cinnamon Roll Cake is that recipe! Before we talk about the recipe, let’s talk about something serious. #Youshouldbeusedtothatbynow This week, April 19-26, 2015, is National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW). Many of you may have read my infertility story (and thank you for reading!) but I wanted to […]

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Reese’s Pieces Cookies Sat, 18 Apr 2015 10:00:33 +0000 Happy Saturday! I hope you’re having a good weekend. Weekends are better with cookies, don’t you think? Do you ever just get a total craving for something? Like, say, brownies? Or cake? Or maybe banana muffins? Or COOKIES? Unfortunately, I get these cravings all the time. Even though I’m constantly surrounded by a plethora of dessert, […]

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Skinny Peanut Butter Banana Seven Layer Bars Sat, 18 Apr 2015 04:19:08 +0000 {continue reading}]]> 0 Happy Hour at Cask & Barrel Fri, 17 Apr 2015 20:00:00 +0000 0 Exclusive: Popular Las Katarinas restaurant to reopen in Alta Sierra Fri, 17 Apr 2015 18:15:31 +0000 0 Skillet Cocoa Brownies Fri, 17 Apr 2015 13:45:33 +0000 Continue reading ]]> 0 Dining News: Empress Tavern 3 to 5 Weeks From Opening Fri, 17 Apr 2015 04:16:31 +0000 0 Three Forks releases “Endangered Ale” to support SYRCL’s efforts to restore wild salmon Fri, 17 Apr 2015 01:36:44 +0000 0 Free Pizza at Blaze Fast Fire’d Pizza on Friday in Davis Thu, 16 Apr 2015 20:00:00 +0000 0 Jenny’s Crumb Cake Thu, 16 Apr 2015 12:00:38 +0000 A few weekends ago I went to see my friend Jenny in Vermont. I had been looking so forward to going to her house to see her garden. Even in the dead of winter, you can tell that amazing things happen in there. Jenny is the most incredible gardener and I drool over her Instagram feed [...]

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Old Fashioned Yeast Rolls: #Recipe Thu, 16 Apr 2015 11:00:00 +0000 Why Old Fashioned Yeast Rolls? Let me explain. We were visiting our family last Thanksgiving, relishing in the fact that we weren’t responsible for the feast. While staying out of the way and witnessing all that was going on in the kitchen, I was fascinated as I watched my stepdaughter prepare these old-fashioned yeast rolls. It was […]

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