Happy Thanksgiving!

by Irvin on November 27, 2014 · 1 comment

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Happy Thanksgiving! From www.eatthelove.com

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Photo Essay: A Food tour of the Mission with Negra Modelo and Rick Bayless. Photo by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love. I’ll fully admit that I’m not a huge beer drinker. In fact, I’m not a huge drinker of alcohol. But that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate a good beer, especially when it’s paired with awesome food. So when Negra Modelo reached out to me for a food tour of the San Francisco Mission (my neighborhood) I jumped at the chance! It helped that there were tons of awesome people also going, including Rick Bayless, one of the leading authority on Mexican food. How could I miss out?

A group of food bloggers on a tour of the Mission. Photo courtesy of Negra Modelo.

Photo courtesy of Negra Modelo.

The first stop with a Mexicatessan in the deep Mission district. I had actually not been there before, which was great because now I have a new place to frequent! The bloggers crowded into the tiny kitchen in back as we watched the cooks make huaraches an oblong fried dough similar to sopes, but a different shape. Stuffed with cactus, we sampled the fabulous food as they explained to use how all their food was made completely from scratch, as they cook and grind their own masa (ground dried corn with lime and water).

Making huarache at La Palma Mexitessan in the Mission neighborhood of San Francisco. Photo by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

Making huarache at La Palma Mexitessan in the Mission neighborhood of San Francisco. Photo by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love. [click to continue…]

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Roasted Rainbow Carrots with Rosemary and Honey Glaze. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

My mom is obsessed with the sweet earthy carrots that I make every Thanksgiving. I often offer to give her the recipe but she always just waves her hands, saying that she’d rather have me make them for her. It’s something to look forward to each year. But the years roll by and every time I place them in front of her, she lights up and takes a heaping amount. I usually send her home with the leftovers and I can just see the glee in her eyes with the idea that she can enjoy them for a few more days. So when Anolon asked me to come up with a signature side dish using their Vesta 9 x 13 baking dish, I knew I had to make these roasted rainbow carrots. I know my mom probably won’t make them for herself, but if she ever wants to, she can finally get the recipe over at Anolon!

I’m teaming up with Anolon for the next six weeks to create recipes for their site for the holidays! And follow their hashtag #holidayhosting for more holiday recipes and fun! A special thanks to Anolon for sponsoring this post. I was compensated for developing the recipe on their site as well as this post and all Anolon products were provided by them. However all opinions above are totally my own and are not endorsed by Anolon.

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This easy recipe for mocha hot chocolate adds a touch of rich Kahlúa to the drink and the whipped cream for the best mocha you’ve ever had.

Mocha Hot Chocolate Recipe with Kahlúa Especial. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

In former life, when I was still living in the Midwest, I was a bookseller at a small independent bookstore. It’s still in existence (which is more than can be said about other bookstores) and I have fond memories of working there. But the one skill that I can take from that period of my life, that I still use, was how to make a good coffee drink. See, when I wasn’t hand selling books that magically won the Oprah Book Club lottery, I was also working at the bookstore coffee shop, learning how to make espresso drinks and generally drinking my body weight in coffee, mochas and hot chocolate. So trust me when I tell you that this mocha hot chocolate recipe with Kahlúa Especial is what you need in your life. (Jump directly to the recipe.)

Mocha Drink Recipe with Kahlúa. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

The secret to a good hot chocolate or mocha is to “bloom” the cocoa powder in the hot coffee or liquid. By mixing the cocoa powder with the hot chocolate you get a darker deeper chocolate flavor something you can’t get from pre-made chocolate syrup. The syrup has a sweetness that is too sharp and overpowering for my taste. I liked a smoother, more subtle bit of sweet in my mochas and using unsweetened cocoa powder means I can control the sweetness. That way the sugar doesn’t overpower the tang of the coffee or the earthiness of the chocolate.

Mocha Hot Chocolate with Kahlúa. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love. [click to continue…]

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This easy Moroccan Spiced Chicken with vegetables is bursting with flavor but quick enough to make that you can serve on a weeknight.

Moroccan Spice Chicken. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of  Eat the Love.

Honestly it took me awhile to really love cooking. Baking I get. I love to bake. I love to throw things into a bowl, pour it into pans and stick it in a hot oven and magically have beautiful treats and sweets come out. When I bake, I’m doing it for other people. You almost never bake for yourself. But cooking? That’s a chore. That’s something you need to do because you have to eat. It wasn’t until I started making food with my partner AJ that I realized that cooking could be fun too. So when Lindsay Olives approached me about their Holiday Moment sweepstake (enter by using their hashtag #LindsayMoment on Twitter or Instagram) and working together around the theme of “making the moment” I realized that what really made the moment for me was cooking with my partner. So I grabbed a can of their large black olives, pulled my partner into the kitchen, and we made a Moroccan Spiced Chicken together. (Jump directly to the recipe.)

AJ is rubbing the Moroccan spices on the chicken. Photo by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

For me, the key is to split the tasks in half and find the things that each doesn’t mind doing. AJ isn’t the most fond of chopping and I actually find it pretty meditative to do the menial tasks like that. I’m not the sort of person that likes to stand there and stir constantly so AJ takes that task in hand. And honestly AJ has no issue with getting his hands dirty, so usually I have him do the rub on the meat. We try to keep it fun and enjoy ourselves in the kitchen. It also helps that I blast sassy pop music to keep it upbeat in the kitchen.

Chopping and prepping ingredients for the Moroccan Spiced Chicken. Photo by AJ Bates for Eat the Love. [click to continue…]

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Caramel Pumpkin Pie with Rosemary Crust [Sponsored Post]

November 15, 2014

“This tastes like Thanksgiving in a bite!” exclaimed my friend Kevin when I served him a slice of the Caramel Pumpkin Pie with Rosemary Crust that I made for Anolon. I was thrilled to team up with Anolon, as they make some of my favorite cookware but I was even more thrilled at Kevin’s response. […]

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How to Butterfly a Chicken

November 13, 2014

Wanna learn how to butterfly a chicken? Here are easy step-by-step instructions with photos on how to do it! Roasted chicken is one of the simple comfort food pleasures that most people love. But for those who don’t know how to do it, it can be intimidating. It’s why precooked rotisserie roasted chickens can be […]

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A bar and bite crawl with Time Out San Francisco [Sponsored Post]

November 10, 2014

“Did you guys order Mashed Potatoes?!” asked a fellow TimeOut San Francisco Night Out reveler. I was on a bar and bite crawl with a number of awesome folks and our third stop was an actual meal! Good thing too as we had been drinking for the past three hours with just some nibbly chicken […]

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Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies with Kahlúa Peppermint Mocha [Sponsored Post]

November 6, 2014

These beautiful peppermint cheesecake brownies are made with Kahlúa Peppermint mocha liqueur for an added depth of flavor! “I love chocolate, and I love mint, but I’m just not super fond of the combination…” said my partner AJ when I told him that I was making peppermint cheesecake brownies with Kahlúa Peppermint Mocha. There is […]

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Congo Bars Recipe

November 3, 2014

This fast and easy congo bars recipe is better than the average blondie bars because it uses brown butter and almond meal! I had totally planned on making my congo bars recipe for the Halloween potluck dinner. That is, until AJ informed me that the costume party we were going to was actually a sit […]

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Candied Pumpkin Seeds

October 27, 2014

These addictive spiced candied pumpkin seeds made with cinnamon, ginger and other spices only take 5 minutes to make! The long thick green vines started to grown along the side of my childhood home in the late summer heading into Autumn. As a kid I didn’t really know what it was. My parents had certainly […]

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Pumpkin Spice Eclairs with Chocolate Beer Pastry Cream and Ganache

October 20, 2014

This pumpkin eclairs recipe with step-by-step photos use carrot juice and pumpkin spice in the dough and beer in the chocolate filling & glaze! Not that I pay much attention to sports in general (football utterly baffles me) but when your original hometown (St. Louis) and your adopted hometown (San Francisco) battle it out in […]

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The smores cocktail aka The S’mores Crunch [Sponsored Post]

October 17, 2014

This smores cocktail recipe that I call The S’mores Crunch is like a nostalgic campfire treat for adults. I have numerous friends who are cinephiles, obsessed with the latest auteur films. They worship at the altar of Scorsese, breathe Tarantino and drop everything for the Coen Brothers. These are the people who closely follow the […]

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Pumpkin Monkey Bread with Chocolate

October 13, 2014
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This pumpkin monkey bread also has chocolate dough mixed in for a crazy looking fun treat that easy to make! I stared at the last three chunks of pumpkin chocolate monkey bread and they did NOT look appealing. I hadn’t been expecting us to eat ALL the monkey bread that I made but AJ pretty […]

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Mediterranean meatballs: a lamb meatball recipe with Tunisian spices

October 6, 2014
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These Mediterranean meatballs are a lamb meatball made with Tunisian spices. They are easy enough to make for a quick tasty weeknight meal! “What do you think about me making Mediterranean meatballs for dinner?” I asked my partner AJ. He looked at me as if I had just grown a second head and with wide eyes replied […]

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Almond Biscotti made with Kahlúa Pumpkin Spice and Dipped in Chocolate [Sponsored Post]

October 2, 2014
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These Kahlúa pumpkin spice almond biscotti are the perfect treat for the Fall season. October is here and that means I can finally allow pumpkin spice to take over my world. I’ve been fighting it for the past month or two, with the explosion of pumpkin spice EVERYTHING starting to appear in August. But I […]

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Guinness Beef Stew Recipe

September 29, 2014
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This easy and comforting Guinness beef stew recipe is perfect to warm you up in a cool brisk evening. As much as I am in denial about it, summer is gone and autumn is here. Having gone up to Oregon for the Feast Portland event made me realize it. Fall fruit like pears and apples […]

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