Thursday, April 2, 2009

J.P. Licks Customer Appreciation Day!

It's Thanksgiving in April! As a "thank you" to customers...and to celebrate the Red Sox Home Opener, stop by any J.P. Licks on Monday, April 6 between noon and 9:00 p.m. for ice cream and fro-yo for $1/scoop.

While not The Diva's favorite, Brigham's "Curse Reversed," J.P. Licks has some fun flavors named after our hometown team:
  • Peanut Beckett and Jelly
  • Very Berry Ellsbury Frozen Yogurt
  • Pedroia's Passion Fruit Sorbet
  • rice DICE Kream
  • Green Monster Tea
  • One Sweet World Series
  • Cherry Ortiz
The Diva likes both ice cream and the Red Sox, go figure! Unfortunately, she gets more ice cream than tickets to games, but what can you do, right?

Oh wait, J.P. Licks has taken care of that too! You can enter to win free Red Sox tickets on their web site. And if you win, of course, you'll take The Diva, right? RIGHT!?!?

Fabulous Feasting,
The Diva.

A little foolin' around

Okay, yesterday's post may have been a little April Fool's hyperbole, but a girl can dream, right?

On to business. For an upcoming series on the blog, I'm looking for people out there that have signed up for full and half shares of CSAs or farm shares for the Summer season (preferably local to MA, but I'll take anywhere) and would be interested in participating in a little project (with little time commitment to you). If you fit the bill and have interest, comment on this post or The Diva an email and I'll fill you in on the details.

For the rest of you, you'll just have to wait and see what's coming up!

Fabulous Feasting,
The Diva.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Diva Heads to Primetime

Foodies, after many weeks of sporadic posts and blogger neglect, I'm finally able to tell you all about something very exciting in the works for The Diva of Dining. Thanks to some savvy networking, friends in high places and a lucky introduction, your Diva is soon to be headed to NYC to film a pilot for a new Food Network show!

While I can't give you a ton of information now (for fear of the legal gods casting wrath upon me), look for more details to come and a drastic redesign of to fit with the new show!

Fabulous Feasting,
The Diva.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

First, there was Aquanet, then cometh pancake batter in a can???

Not too long ago, The Diva's daytime alter-ego and her office-mate -- both strong advocates for a hearty breakfast -- came across the mildly amusing demo video of a company peddling organic pancake batter. Organic pancake batter in a can, that is.

Intrigued, The Diva and her office-mate launched on an expedition of sorts to find out exactly where one could find Batter Blaster, the lazy man's breakfast food. At the time, it was not available in the Boston-area, and after an unsuccessful attempt to have a colleague shuttle it back from a trip from California, The Diva got her hands on a can from Connecticut (for Batter Blaster with less mileage, visit the company Website for a search by zip code).

Saturday's pancake breakfast started out with the usual coffee, hot griddle pan and a can. It all appeared very promising...until Picky Eater caught wind of this break from the usual pancake routine.

Lets just say he was a little skeptical of pancakes from a can.

Coming out of the, can, Batter Blaster seemed to work well. It was easy to pour (spray?) into the pan and make each pancake a uniform size. After the customary burnt first pancake, the rest of them cooked up pretty easily and looked like your normal pancake. The batter also held up well when faced with a handful of frozen blueberries.

Time to talk taste. Right out of the hot pan, Batter Blaster's pancakes were good. They were light, fluffy and tasted like your average pancake. As soon as they started to cool off though, they weren't so fabulous...and got a little more than rubbery. Usually, if there are a few leftover cakes, we'll throw them in foil and toss them in the fridge for a snack or the next day's breakfast. Nuking pancakes in a damp paper towel typically brings them back to life, but our Batter Blaster leftovers didn't pass the Picky Eater smell test.

The verdict? Batter Blaster is a novel food item that would be great for entertaining the kiddies, who are just going to smother them in syrup anyway. For the weekend pancake connoisseur, however, The Diva (and her Picky Eater) recommend sticking to your tried and true methods and recipes for your pancake breakfast.

Fabulous Feasting,
The Diva.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Not your same old bird.

The Diva understands that chicken is for many the go-to weeknight meal: its cheap, cooks fast and tastes like, well...chicken. But it can get boring very fast. The routine is the same: thaw out a breast or thigh, sprinkle with salt and pepper, then bake or grill until cooked. If you're feeling particularly ambitious, maybe a side of broccoli or Minute rice.

Don't deny it, we've all been there. Snore.

Well boys and girls, it's time for a variation on a theme...and you can still go wild with the side of broccoli.

Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts

2 chicken breasts (or cutlets)
4 ounces goat cheese, at room temperature
1 small onion, sliced thin
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped fine
salt and pepper to taste
butcher's twine or toothpicks

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small saute pan, heat butter and 1 tablespoon of oil over low heat until melted. Add onion, salt and pepper and, stirring occasionally, cook on low until onions turn translucent and begin to caramelize. This can take anywhere from 10-15 minutes depending on the heat of your stove. Remove from heat.

If using chicken breasts, place each between layers of plastic wrap and pound them out (using a meat tenderizer, rolling pin, whatever) to approximately 1/4 inch thick (If using cutlets, just make sure they are even in thickness!).

In a small bowl, combine onions, parsley and goat cheese and mix well. Be sure to taste this mixture and add additional salt and pepper as needed.

To assemble, divide the onion mixture between each chicken breast and spread it out evenly. Slowly roll up the chicken breast and fasten with toothpicks or butcher's twine. Season the outside of the chicken with salt and pepper.

In the same saute pan you used for the onions, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil over medium high heat. Sear the chicken on each side. Don't rush this step! The chicken will let you know when it's time to flip, and release easily from the pan. If it's giving you trouble, just relax and give it another minute before trying again.

If you're using a stainless steel or oven safe pan, transfer the pan to the oven and let the chicken cook through. Cooking time will depend on the size of your breasts (insert snickering giggles know you want to). Ahem, er...if you have a meat thermometer, feel free to use it.

When the chicken is cooked through, slice and enjoy!

Fabulous Feasting,
The Diva.