fall getaway @ brooklyn, new york

 

hello brooklyn! to kick off october, justin & i spent a week in new york city. it was the perfect fall getaway, even though the weather was in the high summer temps (i guess we just have to go back for round two of fall in the city). we seriously had the best time, i can't wait to visit again! it was justin's first trip to new york city & my first trip to brooklyn. we (ok.. i) decided to road trip up (which was an 8 hour drive) because i wanted justin to expereince the best of a new york state road trip. a pit stop for breakfast at cracker barrel, lunch at paneras & a scenic drive throughout pennsylvania/new jersey where we caught the start of the fall foliage. how can anyone not love this time of year?

we stayed at the hoxton hotel in williamsburg, brooklyn & it was so beautiful! i am in love with every little detail of the hotel. the interiors are stunning & the restaurant serves up a delicious brunch. the hoxton is london based, which makes the style so unique to new york. when you enter, there is a cafe serving up amazing baked goods, fancy coffee & fresh pressed juices. to the other side of the entry is the restaurant called klein's, which has a large outdoor patio. we enjoyed a few brunches here which i managed to photograph! the traditional english breakfast was a favourite (look at that tater tot). plus, each morning the hoxton delivers breakfast in a bag to your door which includes an overnight oats, orange juice & banana. we will call it first breakfast because on vacation the food never really stops.

we spent our first day exploring williamsburg (brooklyn) & east village (manhattan). i got to visit my favourite online shops in person! bird brooklyn, 7115 by szeki & caron callahan to name a few. i was fortunate enough to meet caron callahan herself (i think justin was fangirling more then me) who is one of the best designers i know. we had dinner at pies 'n' thighs, which served up some amazing fried chicken + waffles. the next day we walked over the williamsburg bridge & explored just about all of manhattan. we had coffee in the streets next to the flat iron building (which was one of the highlights of the trip), saw the empire state building, went through times square, radio city music hall, rockefeller center & central park. on the way home justin wanted to check out grand central station & we came across urbanspace vanderbilt. urbanspace brings over 20 artisanal + chef-driven food concepts to one space. it was so hard to choose a vendor, but we both settled on mian kitchen which served up some amazing bao, fried dumplings & popcorn chicken. justin said it was the "best popcorn chicken he's ever had".

the next day was the hottest day of them all, so we stayed in brooklyn & explored the greenpoint neighbourhood. it reminded me of toronto's queen west, where justin & i previously lived. such a quaint & artsy neighbourhood! we had coffee at homecoming, walked around the historic brownstones, shopped at home of the brave, ate lunch at fornino pizza & relaxed by the waterfront. i was hoping to see the brownstones in park slope as well, but because of the heat we decided to stay close to the hotel. our next two days were spent with red star yeast & the feed feed celebrating the launch of the new platinum instant sourdough yeast. more about this in my next blog post! for now, i will link to some of my favourite shops, cafes & restaurants below.

until next time new york! xo

cafes: partners coffee, homecoming, depanneur , dominique ansel bakery & oslo coffee roasters

shops: caron callahan, 7115 by szeki, bird brooklyn, home of the brave & wolves within.

restaurants: klein's (hoxton), pies 'n' thighs, chez ma tante, mian kitchen, fornino & chelsea market.

hotels: the hoxton, williamsburg

warm spiced pumpkin + tomato dip

 

FINALLY, real fall weather. we just got back from a trip to new york city & it was so hot. although i wish the trip would have lasted longer (i'll be sharing a post all about it this week), i am excited to return home to cooler temperatures so i can soak up all things fall. i spent my first day back home baking up a variety of homemade breads & this cozy pumpkin + tomato dip. it is the perfect recipe to welcome fall!

the dip has a middle eastern vibe as it is spiced with cumin, coriander & tumeric. the base of it is tomato, so it is important to use quality tomatoes such as pomi usa. pomi's tomatoes are fresh & 100% italian. in this recipe i used a mix of the strained tomatoes for smoothness & the chopped tomatoes for texture. the addition of pumpkin puree adds an extra kick of fall flavour & silkiness. i paired the dish with a variety of colourful vegetables to serve as an appetizer, but serving the dip with various breads & pita works too (similar to fondue).

happy october! xo

ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 cup low sodium chicken stock
  • 1 can POMI chopped tomatoes (400 grams)
  • 1/2 cup POMI strained tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree, fresh or canned
  • pumpkin seeds, to garnish
  • fresh cilantro or parsely, to garnish
  • crumbled feta, to garnish
  • crunchy vegetables, for serving

directions

  • in a saucepan over medium heat sautee the olive oil, garlic & shallots. season with salt & pepper. cook until the shallots begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
  • add the cumin, coriander, turmeric & red pepper flakes.
  • whisk in the chicken stock, chopped tomatoes, tomato puree & pumpkin puree. season with salt & pepper.
  • simmer over low heat (covered) for an hour, until the sauce has cooked down.
  • garnish with pumpkin seeds, cilantro & feta. serve warm with crunchy vegetables for dipping!

wild mushroom, kale + sausage pinwheels

 

there is something about pizza pinwheels that screams back to school season! i haven't been in school for years, but it is still so nostalgic this time of year. these pizza pinwheels are not the same pinwheels of your childhood. they are a fancy pants version filled with sweet sausage, wild mushrooms, kale & grueyere cheese. i used california olive ranch's mild & butter extra virgin olive oil as the base to the pizza rolls instead of traditional pizza sauce (kind of like a white pizza) & served them with a side of marinara for dipping. the mild & buttery olive oil is california olive ranch's mildest extra virgin olive oil. it has a subtle buttery flavour which makes it ideal for baking. i like to drizzle the fresh from the oven pinwheels with a touch of the olive oil before serving too, because i can't get enough of that fresh olive oil flavour. maybe it is the italian in me, but there is no such thing as too much olive oil.

these rolls have so many amazing flavours happening, justin couldn't get enough of them. they are great for an after school (or after work) snack & to pack for lunch. i made the dough from scratch using my favourite pizza dough recipe, but if making dough isn't your thing (or you are strapped for time) a store bought version will work! whenever i don't have time to make dough from scratch, i go to a local bakery to purchase the dough directly from them. bakeries & pizza shops make for the best "store bought" dough, as it is prepared from scratch anyways. enjoy!

ingredients

for the pizza dough

for the pinwheels

  • 1 batch of pizza dough (see recipe)
  • 2 tablespoons + 1/4 cup california olive ranch's mild & buttery olive oil
  • 150 grams sweet sausage, casing removed
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups wild mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups fresh kale, torn into pieces
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 2 cups grated gruyere cheese
  • marinara sauce, to serve

directions

for the pizza dough

  • in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment add the water & yeast. let stand for 5 minutes to allow the yeast to activate.
  • once activated, whisk in the olive oil & salt. turn the mixer to low speed & add the flour 1/2 cup at a time.
  • when the dough comes together, turn the mixer to medium speed & knead for 5 minutes.
  • shape dough into a ball & transfer to a greased bowl. cover with a towel & let rise for 2 hours, or until it doubles in size.

for the pinwheels

  • line two baking sheets with parchment paper. set aside.
  • heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. add the sausage & cook until browned, about 5 minutes.
  • using a slotted spoon, transfer sausage to a small bowl. in the same skillet add the garlic & onion, cook until translucent.
  • add the mushrooms & sautee until soft, about 5 minutes. stir in the kale & cook until wilted. season with salt, pepper & chili flakes.
  • remove from heat & let cool for 15 minutes.
  • as the mixture cools, roll out dough on a floured surface as if you were making cinnamon rolls (approximately an 10 x 15 inch rectangle).
  • brush with remaining olive oil, salt & pepper. evenly spread the cheese across the surface of the dough, followed by the mushroom filling.
  • roll dough carefully into a log & pinch ends to close. cut into 10 even slices & transfer to prepared baking sheets.
  • bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, or until golden brown on top. when ready to serve, drizzle with additional olive oil & a side of marinara sauce for dipping.