Monday, February 13, 2012

Intoxicate your Valentine this year with a few of our favorite Love Potion recipes below:
Death In The Afternoon Cocktail
Love in the Afternoon: A Yumology variation on the famed Death In The Afternoon, we've sweetened this drink up a bit by adding a splash of grenadine. Made up of two alcoholic aphrodisiacs (1.5 oz absinthe and 4.5 oz champagne + splash of grenadine) this is a great drink to get the evening off to a fun, flirty start.

Between The Sheets Cocktail
Between the Sheets: Light and citrusy flavors contribute to this fresh and sexy drink. (1oz cognac, 1oz triple sec, 1oz light run, .25oz fresh lemon juice and a lemon or orange peel garnish, add all but peel to a shaker, shake and serve)

Last-Minute Love Potions
The Rose: Unlike a bouquet this Rose comes without thorns or a week long lifespan. (2oz French dry vermouth, 1oz cherry brandy, 1tsp raspberry syrup, garnish with maraschino cherry, add all but cherry to a shaker, shake and pour)

The Dove Cocktail recipe
The Dove:  Let your love fly to new heights with this unlikely Valentine's Day tequila based drink. (.75oz tequila blanco, .75oz Grand Marnier, .5ox fresh lemon juice, 1oz grapefruit juice, 1 dash orange bitters, champagne to top)


Stolen Kiss: Drink enough of these and stealing a kiss will be easy as pie! (1.5oz gin, 1.5oz green chartreuse, 1tsp simple syrup, 1 egg white, add to shaker, shake and pour)

Friday, February 10, 2012

Valentine's Day is for couples; two people who have come together to form a beautiful symphony of love, laughter and life. While we may often wonder where we would be without our soul mate, our better half, our ying or yang, so the same fondness applies to certain food pairings. There are reasons why certain foods are consistently served together; like a good couple, they're just better that way!


Peanut Butter and Jelly


Bacon and Eggs


Bagels and Cream Cheese


Spaghetti and Meatballs


Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese Sandwiches


Hummus and Pita Bread


Buffalo Wings and Blue Cheese


Pancakes and Maple Syrup


Macaroni and Cheese


Biscuits and Gravy


Mint and Chocolate


Milk and Cookies


Coffee and Donuts


Sausage and Peppers

Most Valentines will spend the evening of February 14th wrapped around a small, intimate, dimly lit table at one of their local "fancy" restaurants.  They'll look deeply into each other's eyes reminiscing about the many fond memories they have of their relationship, or perhaps making new memories in a relationship that has yet to fully blossom. They'll splurge on wine, decadent main courses and extravagant desserts, and they'll top the evening off with a bill that's sure to deflate any romance.

The average couple spends $120 on their Valentine's Day meal which ends up counteracting the intended romance of the evening by causing even more stress on a day that's based purely on performance. Not necessarily performance in the bedroom, although that's typically on the docket, but performance in proving just how important their significant other is to them.

Yumology has a better idea - instead of showing your Valentine love and devotion through whipping out your VISA card, take the time to do the work yourself, throw on an apron and get cooking! Studies show that men who cook for Valentine's Day are typically happier in their relationships and these relationships are built on strong mutual respect for each partner.

If you're a novice in the kitchen and the idea of browning butter and marinating steak is a foreign concept, all the better! Exiting your comfort zone and taking on a challenge in the name of love is one of the most romantic things a guy can do. The 1800s had dueling pistols and sword fights, we've got husbands v. the Cuisinart, just as exciting with the same potential for a tragic outcome.

Here are a few helpful tips to get you started as you prepare your Valentine's Day meal.

1.  Keep it Sexy but Keep it Light.
Think about something fellas, when was the last time your lady felt like crawling between the sheets right after downing a huge tray of pasta or a cheesy bean burrito? If you want to make it to the Valentine's Day Mamba you'll avoid heavy, greasy foods. Nothing fried, as few carbs as possible and small portions. Remember if you work up an appetite later that's what leftovers are for, so be sure to store some in the fridge.

2.  Spices to a Minimum
The results from cooking with too much garlic, onion or spice can be disastrous on any evening , let alone on Valentine's Day. Nothing kills romance faster than funky breath or, even worse, funky butt! Keep the exotic flavors to a minimum, you'll thank us later!

3.  Steer Clear of Beer
We know that beer is the go-to brew for many boys nights out, but this is Valentine's Day - class it up! There's something insanely sexy about a bottle and glass of wine. Make your lady feel special, sophisticated and sexy by picking out the perfect wine to accompany your meal. Wine is also an aphrodisiac, guaranteed to break the ice and warm up the sheets!

4. Speaking of Aphrodisiacs
Throw a few into the menu! So many of nature's bounties have been used to encourage fertility and sexual stimuli: Oysters, Chocolate, Anise Seeds, Avocado, Saffron, Basil, Nutmeg, Honey, Truffles and Red Pepper Flakes (keep to minimum though - remember #2) are all at your disposal to make the most of. Red meat is also thought to have sexual stimulants within it, so throw a steak on the grill, whip up some basil butter and an avocado salad. End the night with a dark chocolate dessert and watch the magic unfold.

5.  It's the Thought that Counts
At the end of the day if you and your kitchen just can't get along the fact that you even attempted such a monumental expression of love will be enough. Keep some take out and a box of dark chocolates on hand just in case.

Go get 'em boys!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Image and recipe courtesy of My Yellow Umbrella

Okay, let's be honest, anyone who grew up eating traditional sopapillas like we did will know that this is not an "authentic" sopapilla recipe. That being said the flavors, texture, spirit and simplicity of this dish makes us believe our traditionalists will zip the lip and forgive the slip!

Sopapilla Cheesecake

2 tubes of crescent roll dough
2 8oz bricks of cream cheese
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup melted butter
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp of sugar

  • Unroll and spread the first tube of crescent dough along the bottom of an un-greased baking dish. Make sure the pastry lies flat and do not separate it into individual portions, keep is as one large sheet.
  • Combine the softened cream cheese, 1 cup of sugar and vanilla extract and mix together until smooth.
  • Spread the cream cheese mixture over the flattened crescent dough.
  • Layer the second tube of crescent dough over the top of the cream cheese mixture so that it covers it completely as one large piece of pastry.
  • Spread the melted butter over the top of the pastry and sprinkle generously with cinnamon and sugar.
  • Bake in the oven at 350 for 20-30 minutes or until pastry is golden brown and sugar and cinnamon have formed a crunchy top.
55000 Cupcake

It's February, which means many men the world over are at their wits-end trying to devise the most romantic way to convey to their significant other just how much they love them.

For a large percentage of men Valentine's Day also holds the added pressure of a proposal. That's right, popping the question has become somewhat of a Valentine's Day tradition, and oddly enough, this monumental question of whether or not you'll decide to spend the rest of your life with someone is often accompanied with food. Bribery? Sedative? Perhaps...or it could be that food offers a certain level of comfort to ease both parties into the scenario, a certain level of celebration as well if the answer proves favorable.

In an effort to simplify shopping duties for the groom-to-be, a Philadelphia based bakery, Cupcake Gourmet, has concocted a $55,000 cupcake complete with an 8 carat engagement ring from a local jeweler. The cupcake is red velvet with traditional cream cheese frosting, and while it looks delicious enough to devour in under 2 minutes we suggest carefully monitoring the dessert course in this situation.

Cupcake Gourmet is not the first bakery to create a dish specifically for engaging couples. Many restaurants, bakeries and shops will have items and specials devoted to encouraging monogamy this month. Buyers and diners beware, if you're in a serious relationship and are expecting a proposal any day now you may want to take your time with every bite this Valentine's Day, oh and pay attention to your champagne glasses too!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

February is officially American Heart month. Many of you will notice numerous advertisements, events and campaigns taking place in your cities courtesy of the American Heart Association and other local groups who are hoping to build awareness of heart disease.

In an effort to contribute to this cause Yumology would like to bring your attention to a few dietary changes you can make towards bettering your heart health. The following foods are rich in Omega 3s which can reduce the risk of arrythmias, slow plaque build-up within arteries, lower cholesterol and lower blood pressure:


SALMON


OLIVE OIL


NUTS


FRESH BERRIES


OATMEAL


SOY


DARK CHOCOLATE


POPCORN (MINUS THE BUTTER)


TOMATOES


SEAWEED


POTATOES (BAKED OR BOILED)


COFFEE


WINE

We were just as suprised as you are to find that foods like popcorn, dark chocolate, wine and even coffee made this list of nutritious snacks. Looks like being heart-healthy wont be such a chore after all!

Monday, February 6, 2012

It is just us? Or should Superbowl Sunday be renamed the Supperbowl? After all why should the boys on the field get all the credit? Brady and Manning only had to suit up for four, 20 minute quarters, whereas our kitchen appliances and chefs battled through eight hours of hard fought preparation and cooking, all in the name of game-day-deliciousness. 

If there were a trophy for the best game-day meals we're certain yesterday's spread would have been considered a champion. Our Yumologists managed to pack flavor, health and do-it-yourself fun into a Superbowl feast fit for a Giant!  Here are two of the winning chili recipes we're nominating for the Yumology Hall of Fame:


Carnitas and Tomatillo Chili

From the kitchen of one of our all time favorite Yumologists, Guy Fieri, comes this beauty of a bowl that you and your team mates will love sinkin' your teeth into.

4 lb cubed pork
1 lb roasted tomatillos
4 anaheim chiles
4 chopped yellow onions
2 minced jalapenos
4 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp oregano
1 tbsp black pepper
1 tbsp salt
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1 cup chicken broth
3 tbsp olive oil

  • Add the olive oil to the bottom of a large pot or dutch oven and let it heat.
  • Add the onion, garlic, jalapenos and anaheim chiles to the pot and cook until onions are translucent and soft.
  • Remove the vegetable mix from the pot and add the pork.
  • Add the seasonings to the pork and coat each piece while it browns.
  • After the pork has browned reintriduced the vegetables to the pot and deglaze with the white wine, vinegar and chicken stock.
  • After the chile is hot add the tomatillos to the pot and let them dissolve.
  • Cook on low heat for 3-4 hours.


Beef & Orange Chili

A thick and hearty favorite gets a zesty kick when you add some citrus to this traditional meaty chile.

3 lb ground beef
3 minced garlic cloves
2 tins of black beans
1 tin of diced tomatoes
1 small tin of tomato paste
2 tbsp chile powder
1 tbsp cumin
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 cups of orange juice (heavy pulp recommended)

  • Cook the meat in a skillet with the garlic until it is fully browned.
  • Drain the excess grease from the pan.
  • Add the tomatoes and tomato paste to the meat and stir until coated.
  • Add the spices to the meat mixture and mix well.
  • Transfer the mixture to a crock pot and add the orange juice and black beans.
  • Let cook in crock pot for 1 hour before serving.
  • If it tends to dry out add another cup of orange juice as needed.