Monday, October 12, 2009


I know that I promised an update on our menu for the week and a plan for Miss Chasing Davies, but I'm sick. What started as exhaustion on Saturday has turned into a sore throat, runny nose and hacking cough. Even after sleeping most of yesterday and today, tonight I'm pretty sure that I have a fever.

So, my menu for this week is soup and rest. At least, until I get to feeling better.

Easy Weeknight Meal: Bierock Casserole

Growing up, if my parents needed to pick up a quick dinner in a pinch they would drive through the Bierock Kitchen, instead of stopping by Burger King or Pizza Hut. When I came across this recipe for a bierock casserole, it took me back to my childhood and the memories of eating a meat-filled pocket pastry when we were on the go. While the casserole isn't an exact replica of the German dish, it does feature the same hearty taste and flavor that everyone looks for on a cool Fall night.

Bierock Casserole
-1/2 cup chopped onion
-1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
-1 (16 oz.) can sauerkraut, drained
-2 (8 oz.) cans refrigerated crescent rolls
-1 (8 oz.) package shredded Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brown onion and ground beef in a large skillet over medium high heat; drain extra fat out of skillet, then stir in drained sauerkraut. Heat through and set aside.

Press 1 package of crescent roll dough into the bottom of a lightly greased 9x13 inch baking dish. Spread beef mixture on top, sprinkle cheese on top, then lay 2nd package of crescent roll dough over the top of the beef mixture. Press dough seams together. Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Menu Planning Update

So, a little over a week ago I posted this entry on how my goal for the fall is to plan our weekly meals out in advance. Let's review how that went:

Sunday: Planned on Wine, Cheese & Shrimp Cocktail. Delish!
Monday: Planned on Philly Cheesesteaks. We ate Philly Cheesesteaks. Win.
Tuesday: Planned Garlic Pork Chops with Savignon Beurre Blanc with mashed potatoes. We had Spicy Cajun Pork Chops with mashed potatoes. Close enough.
Wednesday: Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Pasta. Made it. Cooked it. Was.Not.Edible. I'm not sure what it was, but this dish was not good.
Thursday: Westside Local outing. Fantastic beer list. Wonderful wine. Yummy food. Restaurant review to come soon.
Friday: Planned Manale Shrimp. Ordered Sushi. It was a long week and neither one of us felt like cooking.

So, out of five nights of planned cooking we actually did cook four of those nights. Not too shabby, if I do say so myself. This week, however, is a different story. No menu planned + a busy workweek = little cooking, frozen food and takeout.

Next week, I'm back in the planning saddle and will not only be featuring the Warren weekly menu, but will also be coming up with some recipes for my lovely friend, Chasing Davies. Stay tuned!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Hummus among us...

I was fortunate enough to have a very diverse upbringing. My great-grandparents immigrated over from Lebanon before my Jidi was born and the Lebanese traditions, food, culture, and even what we called our grandparents (Jidi and Sitti) have been a huge part of my life. Some of my favorite memories are the time that I spent in the kitchen with my Sitti, learning how to make all of my favorite Lebanese dishes. 

I was raised in the Orthodox faith and each year, my hometown church holds an annual dinner that features the cuisines that my siblings and I all grew up with. This year is the 76th Annual celebration and will feature all of my childhood favorites: Kibba, Stuffed Grape Leaves, Roos and Yakhnee (Rice with Meat and Green Beans in a Tomato Sauce), Salad and Baklawa. While I won't get to be at home to enjoy the food and festivities, in honor of the annual dinner, I'd like to share one of my favorite Middle Eastern recipes-- hummus.

See, the thing is, you just can't go wrong with hummus. Whether serving as an appetizer at a dinner party, making it for a potluck dish or taking it to work for someone's birthday, I actually don't know if I have ever met a person who doesn't like hummus! The best thing about it is that you can make it your own. I prefer mine with a bit more tahini and a definitely more lemon juice. So, the lesson here is...feel free to use the guidelines below, but remember to make your own adjustments as necessary.

-2 cans chickpeas, drained
-2-3 tbsp. minced garlic

-1/2 c. tahini

-1/3 c. olive oil

-1/4 c. lemon juice

-Dash of kosher salt

-Dash of pepper

Combine the chickpeas, garlic and tahini in a food processor. While it’s pureeing, add equal parts of olive oil and lemon juice through the top thing on the food processor until it reaches a smooth consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Fabulous Fall Outfit!

This past weekend, I had a wedding to attend and the perfect fall dress to wear to it, an adorable orange-red silk number with a cut-out circle detail around the neckline. Paired with gold strappy sandals and fun chandelier earrings, it was a great option for the affair.

Unfortunately, mother nature had a different plan for me. See, there was a sudden change of temperature in Kansas City and a silk dress, strappy sandal combo wasn't going to work. That left me searching on Saturday for a new outfit that would not only be stylish but warm. While I was out shopping for a wedding gift, I just happened to stop by Banana Republic and found this adorable wrap dress. The best thing--it was on sale!

A new fall dress requires new fall shoes, right? Luckily, a month or so ago my good friend Chasing Davies posted a review of her trip to Payless to feature their latest shoe collection for the fall. The moment I saw the Koture Ruffle Peep-Toe heels on her blog...I had to have them! 

These beauties are available in both purple and black. While it was a hard decision, I went the practical route and picked up a pair in black to complete my outfit. Not only are they adorable, they're comfy too! I finished off the ensemble with a red, two-strand chunky necklace that added a pop of color for the night. As soon as I can find my camera cord, I'll post pics from the night so that you all can see the final product!

Thursday, October 8, 2009


Is anyone else watching this new ABC show? FlashForward is the only new show in this year's fall line-up that we've watched so far. Dave is enthralled by it and it's definitely growing on me. We really enjoy all of the twists and turns that it has brought to the table so far and we're looking forward to seeing where it will take us this year. What are your thoughts?

Restaurant Review: Georgie Porgie's

I usually try to have a positive attitude before judging any sort of restaurant that we decide to try. From the beginning, I had a bad impression of Georgie Porgie's and upon our arrival and dining at the place it just went downhill from there.

In order to save some money, I bought an Entertainment Book last spring. I originally noticed that there was a coupon for Georgie Porgie's and on Saturday when we were trying to decide on where to go for breakfast, I thought we could take advantage of the savings opportunity. When we got to the restaurant and I went to pull out the coupon, it said it was only valid for Lunch or Dinner. The place doesn't even serve dinner! Regardless of the fact, we still decided to give it a try. I wish we would have just turned around.

Upon our arrival, we stood in the non-existent waiting area and were told to pick a table. Once seated, we perused the menu and decided on a order of biscuits and gravy for me while Dave chose the Breakfast Special that included pancakes, two eggs, hashbrowns and bacon. While waiting for our orders, people came and went. But not all of those that arrived were served in a prompt manner. For a Saturday morning, the place was moderately busy but there were plenty of open tables. A party of three arrived and waited to be seated...the hostess greeted and informed them they would have to wait for a table because all that were available were those for large parties. What does it matter if there are only tables for large parties! Three people at a six-person table is not unreasonable. Not only did I feel bad for those people, but I was appauled by the way the hostess/waitress treated these people!

While not everything about the place is bad (they do have a good menu and reasonable prices), the food was just another thing that added to our poor experience at Georgie Porgie's. While nothing looks wrong with what we were served:

The taste of the food was another story. The eggs and hashbrowns were poorly seasoned and the pancakes were just so-so. The biscuits were a whole other story. Do you notice how first off, you can't even see the biscuits? They were also solid as a rock. The worst part was the gravy. FISH! It was almost like they had made clam chowder in the same pot the day before and it wasn't cleaned. EW. DISGUSTING. GROSS.

Needless to say, we won't be frequenting Georgie Porgie's ever again.