Monday, February 9, 2015

Sausage (or not) Stuffed Mushrooms

I feel like most people either LOVE or HATE mushrooms and I definitely used to be one of the haters. Over the years, I have experimented with recipes and find that I like them more and more. Will I eat raw mushrooms? No. Will I eat sautéed mushrooms in a balsamic glaze? Of course. I will also eat these little guys too...stuffed with sausage or not. 

This was my last minute Super Bowl appetizer and I think everyone liked it. I wanted to please the masses, so I made some stuffed with sausage and some vegetarian. There were even some anti-mushroom eaters that seemed to enjoy them too. I mean...it is healthy, right? 

Sausage (or not) Stuffed Mushrooms 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

24-30 white mushrooms (approx. two boxes)
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons of olive oil
2 links of Italian sausage (casing removed) 
2 cups of fresh spinach, chopped
3 ounces of Gruyère cheese, shredded (I used Trader Joe's Cheddar Gruyère Cheese)
red pepper flakes to taste
salt and pepper to taste 

- Pop the stems off the mushrooms and place cavity side up on a baking sheet. Bake until mushroom caps are tender, 8-10 minutes. Chop half the mushroom stems and reserve. 
- Cook the sausage on the stovetop until brown. Set aside in a separate bowl.
- Add oil, garlic, onion and the mushrooms stems to the pan. Sauté until tender, 3-5 minutes. 
IF cooking vegetarian, add the oil to a separate pan and cook accordingly. 
- Add spinach, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Mix in the pan until spinach is wilted. 
- Remove filling from the heat and start adding to your mushroom caps. Fill each mushroom and top of the cheese. 
- Bake for another 8-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted. 

Share with all your friends and enjoy! 

Saturday, January 31, 2015

A Benedict to Remember at Olympic Provisions

Why has it taken me this long to have brunch at Olympic Provisions? I know I have told you about the SE location for dinner but now it is time to tell you about the NW location for brunch. One of my goals this year is to walk more...anywhere and everywhere. Sunday seems to be the easiest day for me to do this. I decided to head towards Industrial NW Portland and just happened to be passing Olympic Provisions. Coincidence they opened at the EXACT moment I walked by? I don't think so. Brunch was my destiny for the day. 

I was the first one in the restaurant but that didn't last long. The server was great, super helpful and offered great recommendations. She said all the Benedicts were great but specifically called out the traditional and the prime rib. Since it was my first time, I went for the traditional. HELLO...delicious. Honestly, my new favorite in Portland. The hollandaise sauce was flavorful but was not too rich. The ham was sweet with a little crisp and the eggs were poached to perfection. Oh and the potatoes...yeah, those are special. A layered potato situation made in an onion reduction...Chef's speciality. Similar to a gratin, with the layer potatoes, but just so much better. 


I think Olympic Provisions is a Portland staple and consistently I leave satisfied. Next time I am trying those chilaquiles...for sure. My server was kind enough to let me run back to the kitchen for a photo (my apologies to the patron waiting for their food...had to get the shot, duh.)

Also, a nice spot to visit solo because there is bar seating and seating near the window suitable for the "one top." It was a gloomy day so I don't have any beautiful views to report, but it was nice to have a window seat.

If you are feeling fancy after brunch, walk over to Steven Smith Tea for a yummy tea tasting too.

1632 NW Thurman Street
Portland, Oregon
503-894-8136 
open mon 11am - 3pm | tues- fri 11am - 10pm | sat & sun 10am brunch! 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Flax Seed Banana Bread


My weekday morning routine usually consists of a green smoothie and a "healthy" muffin or yummy bread. Let's be honest, I could eat a buttery almond croissant every morning but I try to save those for special occasions. You know, like the weekend. :)

One of my all time favorite recipes is this Banana Almond Muffin recipe but when I want to do something different with my ripe bananas, I go for a more traditional banana bread. This recipe is great because it is made with coconut oil and maple syrup. I even add greek yogurt for some protein. The yogurt is an alternative to a banana so, if you don't have the greek yogurt, just add in another ripe banana instead.

Flax Seed Banana Bread
adopted from my fav, Smitten Kitchen

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2 large ripe bananas
1/3 cup greek yogurt
1 large egg
1/3 cup coconut oil, warmed until it liquefies
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp table salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1/4 cup flax seed

- Grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan with some of your coconut oil and set aside.
- In a bowl (I used my KitchenAid stand mixer), mash up the bananas and then mix in the yogurt.
- Whisk in egg, coconut oil, brown sugar, maple syrup and vanilla.
- Add baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and still until combined.
- Still in flour (1/2 cup at a time if you are using the mixer) and the flax seed.

Pour mixture into your prepared loaf pan and bake for 50 minutes or until your toothpick comes out clean when you test it.

Note: Let the bread cool in the pan before you remove it. I have no patience so I usually pull my bread out too early and haven't allowed it enough time to cool and finish baking in the warm pan. It is easier to slice if it is cooled too.

Enjoy! 

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Good Vibes at Cooper's Hall

This was my third trip to Cooper's Hall and it won't be my last. I like the ambiance and the "good feel" this place has. Every time we go, my girlfriend and I daydream about how stunning a wedding reception would be. It is just so lovely.

Cooper's Hall is a working winery and taproom, so it is very industrial, which I love. All their house wine is served from the tap and we all know how crazy I am for this. Remember when I discovered Vancouver Urban Winery in B.C.? It reminds me a lot of that place. Of course, they have beer on tap and craft cocktails to please the masses, but I always go for the wine.

The first two times I visited CH was just for wine at the bar but I couldn't help but notice all the great food coming from the kitchen. At first, I didn't think it was really a place to order food, but I was dead wrong. Since I have no self control, I decided this time I would try the house stew - green chili pork with white bean and hominy. Yeah...I will be emailing for the recipe. Oh, and let's add some crème fraîche and serve with bread too. So good.


I can always count on a great night with great company at CH. This visit, I decided on their white wine flight so I could try their Gewurztraminer, Riesling, Chardonnay and Cascadia White. My favorite was the Cascadia White because it was crisp and refreshing. 

You can visit Cooper's Hall on a cold winter night for the warm and cozy vibe or check it out in the summer when they have all the rolling garage doors open. You won't be disappointed! 

404 SE 6th Ave
Portland, Oregon
503.719.7000
open mon-thu 4pm - 10pm | fri-sat 4pm - 12am 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Welcome 2015!

I am having post-holiday blues, but also, really looking forward to an exciting new year. It is amazing how liberating it feels to say good bye to one year and welcome another . In the past, I haven't really put much thought to my resolutions or goals for the year, but I think that is about to change. My biggest goal this year is to give Endless Eats a much needed makeover and more attention in general. Here are a few things to look forward to:

(heck, now that I am publishing them, then you can all hold me more accountable)
  • Work on my food photography. I got this beauty as a Christmas/birthday present and looking forward to taking it everywhere with me.
via Amazon
  • New blog design. It is time for a refresh and an update. Here are some great ones on Etsy but also, I love how simple the Spook Fork Bacon logo is. 
via Spoon Fork Bacon
  • Start a series or two. Would love to have monthly posts that might include themes like best takeout spots, restaurants with outdoor seating, cocktail of the month etc. I am open to requests too! Please share your ideas with me! 

Cheers to a brand new year filled with lots of eating and drinking!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Finally...P.R.E.A.M at Ned Ludd

I have to say...Ned Ludd has been on my list for a long time but I never found a huge desire to get to their restaurant, until....Pizza Monday. I heard about PREAM from a friend and figured I would check it out eventually, because yes, pizza rules everything around me. 

Ned Ludd has been bringing in red and white checkered table clothes and playing the awesome throwback R&B tunes for about a year now. PREAM makes Portland Mondays a little bit better. 

There was no wait and we got a table quickly. The menu is simple with a few salads, pizzas and recently added...pasta! We went for a spinach mushroom pasta and a sausage pizza with a béchamel sauce and chile oil. Not your traditional pizza, but definitely delicious. The popular pizza was the traditional Margherita and I WISH we would have gotten it. Gah...it looked so fabulous. Shocking...I wanted basil, tomatoes and mozzarella. 

If you have a larger group, don't worry because they also serve pizza in their private space, Elder Hall, right next door! 

It is a great spot and the perfect way to start your week. Ned Ludd is cozy with a visible wood fire oven and rustic ambiance. Their team brings out your order as it is ready so a fun place to go for sharing. You all know me...I LOVE sharing. 


               
               

3925 NE MLK Blvd 
Portland, Oregon 
503.288.6900
pizza monday | 5pm - close
open tues - sun 5pm - close | sun brunch 9am - 2pm


*Check out this article about PREAM - you might not have to wait until Mondays anymore. New space opening in SE Portland dedicated to pizza.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Astoria Day Trip for Beers & Baked Goods

One of the best things about living in Portland is the ability to take day trips at the drop of a hat. This includes day trips to the Oregon Coast, Mt. Hood, The Gorge or Wine Country. My brother recruited me to join him and his girlfriend on a drive up the coast to Astoria. Oh my gosh...what a day it turned out to be. It was an incredible November day. Look at those blue skies! 


Naturally, I center most my adventures around food but we needed to work up an appetite first! We decided to explore the Peter Iredale shipwreck and Fort Stevens State Park. I haven't been there since I was a kid so it was neat to read about the history this time. But of course, we still acted like kids and took turns climbing it like a jungle gym. 

Next stop, Fort George Brewery & Public House. This is probably one of the most well-known places in Astoria, except for the my recent discovery of Bowpicker Fish & Chips. Do you like food trucks? Well, this place is a food boat. Simple menu with fish and chips served on land from the bow of a boat. Anyway...back to Fort George. We did the tasting flight which offered over a dozen samples! Good thing we shared. I really liked their Oatmeal Pale Ale and their seasonal, Java the Hop. It is like this coffee, chocolate, smooth IPA. It is not dark like a stout and easy to drink. Oh and if you are feeling crazy but don't want beer, they have a Wasabi Ginger Ale. Yes, woah.


Next stop, Blue Scorcher Bakery & Cafe. Why? Because we needed a cookie after all those savory beers. It also helped that it was in the same building as Fort George. We sampled a Swedish Limpa bread...who has tried this? It was a first for me and such a nice treat with flavors of orange and fall spices. I tasted the anise seed instantly but was told their was fennel in it too. Delish! This is not their recipe, but I imagine this is similar to what I ate. We walked out with a large chocolate ginger molasses cookie and that poor cookie didn't make it a block. We devoured it on our walk to Buoy Beer Company.


Buoy Beer Company was neat, I wished I took more photos. Their taproom is right on the water so there are great views of the ocean and all the ships coming in and out. We went for clam chowder and sweet potato fries. The best kind of comfort food on a crisp, fall day at the coast. There was an incredible rainbow over the ocean that captured most of the patrons attention. We will have to visit again when we can spend more time sampling all the beers. The rain was coming, so we wanted to get on the road quickly.


We hit the jackpot in Astoria and I was pleasantly surprised with how far this little coastal town has come. Next visit will call for an overnight stay because I want to try the pre-Prohibition cocktails at Albatross.

all open seven days a week