TNFlavors-HomePageImage

The “Tennessee Flavors”, a benefit for the Culinary Arts Program at Nashville State Community College, is coming up soon! With over 50 local food and drink artisans (see below) already signed on to prepare  “Homegrown Tennessee Products”, this is certainly a tasting event you don’t want to miss.

What:
Tennessee Flavors

When:
Thursday, March 12, 2015
5:30 – 8:30 pm

Where:
Nashville State Community College
120 White Bridge Road
Student Services building

Cost:
$50/person

$150 for VIP tickets

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.tnflavors.org or call the Nashville State Community College Foundation at 615-353-3222.

Participants:

8 Lavender Lane Catering & Events
55 South
1808 Grille
Amber Falls Winery
Amerigo Italian Restaurant
Arrington Vineyards
Bacon & Caviar BBQ
Beachaven Vineyard and Winery
Cabana/Midtown Café
Cielo Tequila
City House
Cork & Cow
Corner Market Catering Company
Corsair Distillery
Cumberland Cask
Eastland Café
Edible Nashville
Etch
Fido
Gaylord Opryland Hotel
George Dickel
Germantown Café
Goo Goo Cluster
Heroes Vodka
Hidden Jewel Wines
Holland House Bar & Refuge
Jack Daniels
Kickin Coffee and Tea
Lonely Cow Vineyards
Loews Vanderbilt Plaza Hotel
Margot Café & Bar
Martin’s BBQ Joint
McConnell House
MistaDale’s Specialty Foods
Music City Center
Napa Smith Brewery
Nicoletto’s Pasta Co.
Noble Springs Dairy
Nola Snacks
Noshville
Old Hickory Whiskey
Pick Tennessee Products
Popcorn Sutton Moonshine
Prichards
Provence Breads & Café
Puckett’s
Puckett’s Boat House
Rainforest Café
Randy Rayburn School of Culinary Arts
Red Eye Bloody Mary Mix
Red Pony
Renaissance Nashville Hotel
Ruth’s Chris
Saturday Night Red
Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee
Short Mountain Distillery
Stonehaus Winery
Strategic Hospitality (The Patterson House, Merchant’s Pinewood Social, Catbird Seat)

 

So now that you’ve seen that impressive vendor list, you want to go– right?!?! Well, as luck would have it, I’ve got a set of tickets to give away!

 

~Giveaway~

Contest Closed

The Winner is….

#7 Jess

 

To enter, all you have to do is this:

Mandatory

1. Leave a comment with your favorite memory or story about any of the participating food and drink artisans listed above.

Optional

For up to 2 additional entries, you can do either or both of the following. Note: You must leave a separate comment for each optional entry.

2. Follow me on Twitter (@betheats) and tweet “Get a taste of @TennesseeFlavor by winning a set of tickets to the event from @betheats! Enter here: http://bit.ly/1zHxXEV” then leave a comment telling me you’ve done so.

3. Like Eat. Drink. Smile. on Facebook and come back and tell me you did so (or just tell me you already do if that’s the case!)

Contest ends on Tuesday, March 3rd at noon CST. Once the winner is chosen, I’ll make contact via email and post the name here on the blog. If that person doesn’t respond within 48 hours, I’ll be forced to choose another, so be sure to check your email!

 

 

freekeh-brussels-sprouts-cherries-pecans

 

Get your freekeh, get your freekeh.  Yes, it’s pronounced freak – uh, and I’m channeling Missy Elliot as I sing that over and over in my head.

Never heard of freekeh? It wouldn’t surprise me. Until I participated in Whole Grains Sampling Day last spring and was sent a bag, I’d never actually used it myself. I’d seen it on a few food blogs here and there, but none of the recipes I’d seen excited me enough to run out to the store and buy it.

So thank goodness for that free sample because now I’m a huge fan!

Higher in protein and fiber than quinoa, it’s my new favorite super grain. Nutty and earthy in flavor, freekeh is a bit chewy (in a good way) — almost meaty — so for me, it makes a great ingredient in Meatless Monday dishes.

This particular recipe was created for our recent Nashville Food Bloggers post-holiday potluck and was quite a hit. I had just enough left over that I was able to eat it again a couple of days later for lunch, and I’m happy to say that it holds up well and tastes great even after being in the fridge a few days.

 

Print

Freekeh with Brussels Sprouts, Apples, Cranberries, Cherries and Pecans

Serves 8. Adapted from Food Wanderings.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup wholegrain Freekeh
1 lb Brussels sprouts, outer leaves peeled, stemmed and halved
4 Tbsp oil
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup dried cherries
1 medium onion, diced
1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and diced
Juice of 1/2 medium lemon
2 Tbsp honey
1/8 tsp salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/3 cup parsley, finely chopped
1/4 tsp salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup toasted pecans

Directions:

In a small saucepan, place 1/2 cup of freekeh and 1 1/2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Stir, reduce heat to simmer. Cover and cook for time noted on freekeh package. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Drain any remaining water.

Pre-heat the oven to 400. Toss 2 tablespoons of oil with the Brussels sprouts, spread on cookie sheet and roast for 25-30 minutes while turning once with a spatula at the 15 minute mark. Remove from oven and sprinkled with a little sea salt. Set aside.

In a small bowl, soak the cranberries and cherries in hot water for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.

On low/medium heat add 2 tablespoons oil into a large sauté pan. Add the onions and sauté for a few minutes until the onions are soft and translucent. Do not caramelize onions. Add the diced apple and lemon juice to the onions and continue sautéing for a few minutes longer until the apples are soft but not mushy. Add the honey, 1/8 teaspoon of salt and some freshly ground black pepper and continue sautéing for a couple of minutes longer.

Remove from heat and, in a large bowl, add the freekeh, brussels sprouts, apple mixture, dried cranberries, cherries, and parsley. Mix and adjust for salt and black pepper. Add toasted pecans. Serve warm or at room temperature.

 

Note:

The brand of freekeh that I have used is Freekehlicious. It is available at Harris Teeter stores nationwide. I’ve also seen freekeh at our local Whole Foods as well.

snake-handler-nashville

 

Snake Handler Week-Long Celebration

Tuesday February 10th – Saturday, February 14th, 2015

This week Good People Brewing Co of Birmingham, AL launches their most iconic and sought after beer, “Snake Handler”, here in Nashville with a week-long celebration at various establishments around town.

All events start at 5pm:

  • Tuesday, 2/10: Good People Tap Takeover at 12 South Tap Room.  Snake Handler on draft as well as other Good People brews: Bearded Lady, Fatso, Pale Ale, IPA, and the Coffee Oatmeal Stout.
  • Thursday, 2/12:
    • Beer dinner at Rudie’s Seafood and Sausage, including seven different food + Good People beer pairings.
    • Brewhouse Midtown will be offering a pint glass giveaway and three Good People beers on tap.
  • Friday 2/13: Good People Tap Takeover at Flying Saucer featuring Snake Handler and four other Good People beers.
  • Beginning Friday 2/13, 3 Crow Bar and Five Points Pizza will offer Snake Handler on draft.

 

 

masons

James Beard House ‘Nourishing Past’ Preview Dinner

Saturday, February 14th, 2015
Seatings at 6:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.

Mason’s at Loews Vanderbilt Hotel
2100 West End Avenue
Nashville, TN 37203

Cost: $75 per person plus tax and gratuity. Wine pairings included. Reservations are required and can be made by calling (615) 321-1990.

 

I don’t typically post Valentine’s Day specific menus because pretty much every restaurant has one. However, this one is a little different, so I wanted to highlight. Chef Brandon Frohne of Mason’s has been invited back to the acclaimed James Beard House in New York to cook on February 21st (his second visit there) and he’ll be making a very special meal that draws on his family heritage.

The ‘Nourishing Past’ dinner tells his grandparents’ love story, and those of us here in Nashville can experience it ourselves on Valentine’s Day when Chef Frohne hosts a special preview of the dinner at Mason’s!

 

STORY BEHIND THE MENU:

The dinner will explore Frohne’s grandparents’ European roots and the story of their journey through Germany, Sicily, Bulgaria, Switzerland and Canada, which ultimately shaped his family’s food heritage and influenced Frohne’s approach to Southern cooking.

The tasting menu takes diners on a journey, starting with his grandfather’s experiences in WWII of repeatedly escaping enemy capture and caring for his mother in war-torn Germany, continuing with his grandmother’s childhood in Bulgaria and early adult life running a bed and breakfast in Switzerland, and ending with their own love story of meeting in Canada and falling in love over pie and coffee dates.

MENU:           

Escape Artist & the Sea (Tunisia/Sicily 1938)

Djerba-Style Prawns with Harissa, Preserved Lemons, Tomatoes, Mediterranean Sea Water

Pfifferlinge & Pflaumen (Germany 1940)

Semmelknodel with Chanterelles, Plums, Pancetta, Herbs

Handshakes & Gypsum (Bulgaria 1943)

Lamb Guvech with Labneh, Okra, Mint

Rustico (Switzerland 1945)

Luganeca Piacenza Sausage with Floriani Red Flint Polenta, Blistered Grapes, Pickled Fennel, Crispy Hen Egg

Toronto Love Story (Canada 1954)

Apple Hand Pie with Messmör, Powdered Apple Streusel, Rosemary-Coffee Semifreddo, Roasted Coffee Beans

 

 

flip-burger

Richard Blais Book Signing

Tuesday, February 17th, 2015   To Be Rescheduled Due to Inclement Weather – stay tuned!
5 – 7 pm

Flip Burger Boutique
4111 Charlotte Avenue
Nashville, TN 37209

As most of you know, FLIP burger boutique opened here in Nashville recently. I haven’t had a chance to go yet, but plan to very soon. In fact, I’m going to try to get over there next Tuesday, as Richard Blais, the concept chef (and Top Chef alum) behind the restaurant, will be visiting to socialize with guests and sign copies of his James Beard Award-nominated cookbook, Try This at Home: Recipes from My Head to Your Plate.

Copies of Try This at Home will be available to purchase for $30.

 

 

regsitetop

Wined Up!

Friday, February 27th, 2015

6- 9  pm
6 pm Silent Auction, Wine Tasting, Bites
8 pm Live Auction and Live Music

The Rosewall
1207 McGavock Street
Nashville, TN 37203

Cost: $125 per person ($90 is tax deductible)

The Thursday Private Vintner’s Dinner and the Saturday Pairings event sold out quickly, but there is still time to get tickets to Friday night’s Wined Up! event. Party with the vintners and sample delicious bites from Kayne Prime, Saint Anejo, Moto, Tavern, Virago, and Whiskey Kitchen while sipping fabulous wines.

For a list of featured wineries, click here and to purchase tickets, click here.

 

 

Food-for-thought-2015

Food for Thought

Friday, March 6, 2015
6:30 – 9:30 pm

Nashville Farmers’ Market
900 Rosa L. Parks Blvd
Nashville, TN 37208

Cost: $50

Note: This is a 21 and over event.

I know it’s February, and typically I only post events one month at a time, but this one is happening in early March and I want to make sure you have plenty of time to get it on your calendar. Food for Thought, a “culinary celebration” fundraiser, will feature Margot Cafe and Bar, Riffs Fine Street Food, Edley’s BBQ, Monell’s, Catering by Suzette, Fabulous Wings, Dough Works, Buttercake Babe, Bosses Burgers, Galen’s Gluten Free Donuts and more!

The event will also feature live entertainment and a silent auction. Proceeds will benefit Benton Hall Academy, where teachers are dedicated to educating students in grades 3 – 12 who learn differently*.

To purchase tickets, click here.

 

* About Benton Hall

Benton Hall Academy offers students a learning environment that is as individual as they are.Founded in 1977 in Franklin, Tenn., the teachers and administration of BHA understand and celebrate that all human beings are different: in the ways they perceive the world, express feelings, relate to others and have distinct learning styles.Benton Hall Academy is accredited by SACS (Southern Association of Colleges and Schools) and approved by the State of Tennessee, serving approximately 80 students in grades 3-12.For more information, please visit: http://www.BentonHallAcademy.org.

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The first time I walked into Prima, I was immediately struck by the stunning light installations. Truly breathtaking.

I knew instantly they were the work of Bruce Munro. Did any of you see his exhibit at Cheekwood a couple of years ago? Beautiful.

Located on the ground floor of the Terrazzo on 12th Avenue South in the Gulch, the sleek dining space has extremely high ceilings, giving it the potential to feel cavernous, but the gorgeous LED sculptures warm the space and certainly made me fall in love. Okay, so maybe that’s not all that I’ve fallen in love with. After three visits, in which I’ve sampled much of the menu, the cuisine is really what sealed the deal and secured Prima a spot on my favorites list.

 

prima-octopus

Prima Octopus
corona beans, olives, orange zest

Oh, but wait. I should also mention the service. This is definitely a fancy place, so one would probably expect the service to be great — and it is. What tickles me is that the servers are attentive without being over-the-top. I have to admit that I’m not always a big fan of fancy-schmancy places, and it’s usually because the servers are dry and even a bit snooty on occasion. Not like that here…at least from what I’ve experienced. The staff I’ve encountered have had great personalities and are knowledgeable without being pretentious.

They also score high points for offering a choice of white or black napkin. It’s the small things!

 

prima-lobster-gnochetti

Prima Lobster semolina gnocchetti with cashew lemon cream sauce

 

Now back to the most important topic– the food! Described as a Contemporary American restaurant, the menu really has something for everyone. I’ve dined at Prima with vegetarians, pescetarians, meat-loving carnivores, picky eaters and adventurous eaters, and every single one of them has left there happy. Every one.

The kitchen is led by executive chef Salvador Avila, who, in the past, has spent time at 360 Bistro, Burger Up and City House. I have to admit, I didn’t know of the chef before he started at Prima, but man, oh man, I’m impressed. He is definitely one to watch in this town.

photo 3

Prima’s endive salad, house made chorizo and salmon

Most menu offerings at Prima are meant to be shared, which (as you may know) is my favorite way to eat. The flavors in many of Chef Avila’s dishes are inspired by his Latin American heritage, adding a little spice and heat when you least expect it. Again, just one more reason that I’m enamored with this place.

Of everything I’ve eaten at Prima so far, the lobster gnocchetti with cashew lemon cream sauce is probably the one I’m most obsessed with. It is so incredibly delicious, and the textures so unique, that there is just no way that I could go there and not order it.

 

prima-arugula-salad

Prima Arugula Salad – turnips, grana, herb vinaigrette

Other standouts include the duck breast; the foie gras home fries with garlic mayo; oyster mushrooms in a beef fat vinaigrette; the octopus; the endive salad; and the charred cabbage with field peas, garlic bread crumbs and pork fat/mustard dressing.

I know, that’s a lot of items I just listed off, but honest to goodness, there is just SO much on the menu that I’ve been impressed by!

 

prima-duck

Prima’s BBQ Duck Breast

Somehow I’ve managed to leave room for dessert on a couple of visits too, and would recommend you do the same. If you like coffee and chocolate, order the affogato and you’ll enjoy the unexpected surprise you get when you cut into it. Trust me.

photo 2

Desserts at Prima

Last but certainly not least, the bar offerings. They’ve got an extensive wine list (and a 3,000 bottle wine cave), so if you’re into wine, they’ve definitely got you covered. For those of you that prefer a good cocktail (me!), you’re in luck too, because the cocktails at Prima are excellent!

While Prima is certainly at the top of my list of places to go when celebrating a special occasion, I also suggest that you not overlook it for a simpler meal, or just a place to relax and grab a drink.

Drop by for an after-work drink and spend a little time at the bar. Heck, just grab a bite to eat right there. Sometimes we don’t feel like a multi-course meal that takes two hours to get through. Believe me, I get it. Sitting at the bar, you’re still a part of the beautiful space, you’re getting great service, but you can order something as simple as a burger. Well, I probably shouldn’t describe their burger as simple. Weighing in at a half pound, and topped with mushrooms and Swiss cheese on a house made onion bun and finished with foie gras butter, it sounds a bit decadent. But seriously, swoon. I need it.

 

prima-bar

The bar at Prima
image courtesy of Prima’s Facebook page

Prima

700 12th Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203
(615) 873-4232

Sun – Thurs: 5p – 10p
bar open until 11p

Fri – Sat: 5p – 11p
bar open until 12a

~Giveaway~

Contest Closed

The Winner is….

#92 Cash

Do my words and photos have you itching to go check out Prima now? I hope so. I’m even going to help one of you experience it without putting a very big dent in your pocketbook!

The fine folks at Prima have given me a $100 gift card to give away to one lucky reader!

To enter, all you have to do is this:

 

Mandatory

1. Leave a comment telling me what dish at Prima you’re most excited to try. You can take a peek at their menu if you want a few more ideas than what I’ve provided already. Or if you’ve already been, share your favorites!

For up to 2 additional entries, you can do either or both of the following. Note: You must leave a separate comment for each optional entry.

2. Follow me on Twitter (@betheats) and tweet “I really want to eat @PrimaNashville and @betheats has a $100 gift certificate to give away! http://bit.ly/1tXZX9Y”, then leave a comment telling me you’ve done so.

3. Like Prima on Facebook and come back and tell me you did so (or just tell me you already have if that’s the case!)

 

Contest ends on Sunday, February 8th at noon Central. Once the winner is chosen, I’ll make contact via email and post the name here on the blog. If they don’t respond within 48 hours, I’ll be forced to choose another, so be sure to check your email!

nashville-originals-restaurant-week-2015

Nashville Originals Restaurant Week

January 19th – 25th, 2015

Sorry that I’m a little late notifying you of this one. Nashville Originals Restaurant Week is happening right now, so be sure to get out and support our locally owned restaurants this week! For a full list of everyone participating and a peek at the menus, click here.

 

 

taco-trip-smoke-et-al

Nashville on the Cooking Channel’s Taco Trip

Tuesday, January 20th, 2015
8:30 pm

Celebrity chef Aaron Sanchez came to Nashville a while back to tape his “Taco Trip” show for the Cooking Channel. While here, he visited Mas Tacos Por Favor, Smoke Et Al, Delta Bound and Taco Mamacita. My friend Tabitha and I were there to eat Smoke Et Al’s House-Smoked Pork Belly and BLT Taco, so be sure to tune in tonight to see if I had food stuck in my teeth while talking on camera! (that is, if I even made the cut and appear on screen!)

 

 

flip-burger

Flip Burger Opening

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015

Flip Burger Boutique
4111 Charlotte Avenue
Nashville, TN 37209

Tomorrow the Nashville Flip Burger Boutique opens! This is one restaurant that I know many of you have been excited about since we heard the news they were coming to town. I’ve eaten in the original location in Atlanta and loved it, so I can’t wait to get over there and order a big fat burger.

They’ll be serving lunch and dinner daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday-Sunday and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday.

 

biscuit-love-brunch

Biscuit Love Brunch Opening

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

Biscuit Love Brunch
316 11th Ave S
Nashville, TN 37203

Open Daily 7 am – 3 pm

If you haven’t already heard the news, one of my favorite food trucks, Biscuit Love, has a new brick-and-mortar location where they’ll be serving brunch 7 days a week! In addition to the sit down brunch service, there will also be a pastry counter and a ham bar with regional country hams. They’re speaking my language.

I was lucky enough to be invited to preview the new Biscuit Love Brunch this past weekend and am happy to report back that it’s just as awesome as I thought it would be! They open this Thursday, so go check them out as soon as you can.

 

wine-women-shoes

Wine, Women & Shoes

Saturday, January 24th, 2015
11 am – 3 pm

Omni Hotel
250 5th Ave S
Nashville, TN 37203

Cost: $125

For those of you looking for something to do this weekend, why not support a few great causes while shopping and drinking?

Wine Women and Shoes benefits the programs of the YWCA of Nashville & Middle Tennessee, including the Weaver Domestic Violence Center and Girls Inc. The event will have a marketplace selling designer goods, a fashion show featuring Leona by Lauren Leonard, live and silent auctions, more wine than you’ll ever need, and Chip Esten. Yes ladies, Deacon will be in the house as the special musical guest.

To learn more and purchase tickets, click here.

 

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Cured & Chopped Tasting Event & Viewing Party

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015
7 – 10 pm

Mason’s at Loews Vanderbilt Hotel
2100 West End Avenue
Nashville, TN 37203

Cost: FREE and open to the public

Wow. I just found out about this FREE event happening at Mason’s next week, and it looks awesome!  Locals are invited to the Cured & Chopped tasting event and viewing party, celebrating and featuring Mason’s Southern Gypsy Ham created by Bob Woods of The Hamery and chef Brandon Frohne. Attendees will be able to sample the ham as well several other local artisan products (see below) and everyone is encouraged to stick around until 9 p.m. to watch the premiere of ‘Chopped’ episode “Chopped, Again!” where Chef Frohne will be making his second appearance!

Featured Artisanal Goods: Southern Gypsy Ham from Bob Wood’s Hammery & Mason’s; Samples of Jams & Pepper Jelly from Nashville Jam Company; Famous Pimento Cheese & Cornbread from Miss Daisy King of Miss Daisy’s Kitchen; Biscuit Samples from Bluebird’s Biscuits; Samples of Kimchi, Relishes, Turnip Kraut from Chef Richard Jones of Green Door Gourmet; Cheese Samples from Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheese; samples of Spring Mountain Farms Chicken from Chef Jamie Watson/ Springer Mountain; Sample cocktails with their new Pristine Tonic from Jon & Lindsey Yeager of Pour Taste & E Harlow

 

 

wiseacrea-colorfull-logo

Wiseacre Beer Dinner

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Sinema
2600 Franklin Pike
Nashville, TN 37204

Next week, Sinema, one of my favorite restaurants, will host a special Wiseacre Beer event in their upstairs lounge. There are a couple of different levels of participation:

  • Private brewmaster dinner
    • VIP meet & greet
    • Seated four-course dinner with beer pairings
    • Entry to the Wiseacre Beer Bash
    • Tickets are $100, exclusive of tax and gratuity.
    • Reception at 6 p.m.; dinner at 7 p.m.
  • Wiseacre Beer Bash
    • Wiseacre beer samples
    • Passed appetizers from Chef Levitski
    • Tickets are $25, exclusive of tax and gratuity
    • Event begins at 8 p.m.

All tickets must be reserved in advance by calling 615-942-7746.

Now, there is so much I’d love for you to know about Wiseacre (including their relation to Sinema), but per usual, I don’t have much time to write, so I’m going to direct you over to my friend Chris at the Nashville Scene’s Bites blog, as he does a great job giving you the full  story!

 

GOO_GOO Shop Logo

Goo Goo Shop Grand Opening Celebration

Friday, January 30th & Saturday, January 31st, 2015
10:30 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Goo Goo Shop
116 3rd Ave S
Nashville, TN 37201

If you wonder why I haven’t been blogging as much recently, this is why. As the Director of Marketing for the Goo Goo Cluster brand, I already had a full plate. Now we’ve got a huge new retail store in downtown Nashville that I’m also managing the PR and Marketing of, and all I can say is… I’m exhausted! Totally exciting and thrilling to be a part of this Shop coming to life though, so it’s worth it.

Last summer we opened the Goo Goo Shop as smaller scale pop-up while undergoing construction on a larger space within the building. Well, that larger space has now been revealed and we have a confectionery kitchen where our new line of handmade Goo Goos are produced. These Premium Goo Goos are sold exclusively at the Shop and our chocolatier Lauren is continuously cranking out a variety of flavor combinations every day.

Next weekend we’re finally hosting a grand opening celebration and I would absolutely love for all of you to attend and taste some of the new Pemiums!

Here are some things we’ll have happening:

  • Friday, January 30th
    • 10:30 a.m. – Ribbon cutting with the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce
    • 10:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. Raffles, discounts, and samples of Premium Goo Goos throughout the day
    • 10:30 a.m. – First 25 customers to make a purchase receive a free Premium Goo Goo each month for a year
    • 10:30 a.m to 1:30 p.m. – Artist on hand to create fun caricatures of guests free of charge
  • Saturday, January 31st
    • 10:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. Raffles, discounts, and samples of Premium Goo Goos throughout the day
    • 10:30 a.m. – First 25 customers to make a purchase receive a free Premium Goo Goo each month for a year
    • Noon to 4 p.m. – Artist on hand to create fun caricatures of guests free of charge

 

 

googoopremium_02

Peanut Butter Pretzel Premium Goo Goo

photo credit: Hannah Messinger

 

 

 

bbq-meatballs

 

A new recipe from me! Can you believe it? Maybe you haven’t noticed since *hopefully* you come to me for more than recipes, but I haven’t posted a new recipe in a very long time. Like, OMG — August. Wow.

I’ll be honest. While I do cook at home on a regular basis, now that I have a toddler, my experimenting days are few and far between. Archer was a pretty good eater when he was smaller, but this past year he has become pickier and pickier, so our meals at home are usually very basic. As in – roasted vegetables, meat, starchy carb. There aren’t too many dishes that I prepare that are worth blogging about. Not to say they don’t taste good, they just don’t require much instruction, or there are already a million recipes floating around online for them.

But, every now and then I’m called on to prepare food for a party or gathering of friends, and that’s when I take some time to play around in the kitchen. Over the holidays I did just that as I prepared for a NYE party at a friend’s. The kiddo was away from home for a couple of days, and I had time off work, so instead of relaxing in front of the TV or going to get a massage, I cooked. Because honestly, that’s my therapy. Losing myself in food prep is good for my soul and while I was doing it last week, I realized how much I missed it.

Since I had time, I went a little crazy and volunteered to make several appetizers for the party. Some I’ve made many times before, like the Goat Cheese Stuffed Peppadew Peppers, Mini Chicken ‘n Waffles, and Prosciutto and Boursin Wrapped Asparagus. And then I had a brand new one: Ají Amarillo Dip served with plaintain chips (inspired by my visit to Tanta in Chicago). And an easy-to-prepare assorted cheese tray served with Simple & Crisp Dried Fruit Crisps to give a fairly basic party platter an interesting new twist.

But the dish I’m sharing the recipe for today is really special, as it’s actually one that my mom made and I ate throughout my entire childhood: BBQ Meatballs! Definitely a family favorite and requested often for potlucks back home, I’m not sure why I haven’t ever thought to make them before now. So happy I pulled out that tattered, handwritten (by my mom and aunts) recipe book last week and decided to give them a go, because they turned out to be a huge hit at the party. Not only did several people rave about them, but they wanted to know how they were made, what went in them, etc. So, here you go!

 

Print

BBQ Meatballs

Makes 24-30 meatballs

Ingredients:

Meatballs
2 lbs ground beef
1 small onion, diced
salt (to taste)
1/4 tsp red pepper
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 cup oats
1 cup tomato juice
1 egg

Sauce
3/4 cup ketchup
1 tsp vinegar
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1/4 tsp black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients for meatballs (ground beef through egg). Once all ingredients are thoroughly incorporated, shape into balls. Put just enough water in a 9 x 13 baking dish to cover the bottom*. Add meatballs to baking dish. Cook, uncovered, in oven for 1 hour.

While the meatballs are cooking, mix all ingredients for sauce in a small pan. Bring to a boil, then simmer on low heat.

Once the meatballs are done cooking, remove from oven and drain liquid from pan. Using a spoon, ladle sauce over the meatballs. Return to oven for 15 minutes.

*The water prevents the ground beef from sticking to the pan, helps to catch the grease, and keep the meatballs moist while baking.

Chauhan-Ale-Masala-House-building-front

 

Way back in the spring of 2013, I heard the news that a unique Indian concept was coming to town and I was ecstatic. Did you miss that post I wrote way back then? If so, you can click here to see for yourself just how ridiculously excited I was after speaking with celebrity Chef Maneet Chauhan regarding her new venture. Many looonnnngggg months later, Chauhan Ale & Masala House is finally open for business and the wait was worth it!

Located across the street from 12th and Porter in the the old Cafe 123/Rooster’s space (for those of you that are old enough to remember either of those), the shotgun room has been completely transformed into a beautifully inviting space. When I first stepped inside the doors, I was struck by the warmth of it all. For lack of a better term, it was comfortable. Not fussy, not busy, not stark. It was just right. The vibrant Indian palette mixes perfectly with exposed brick and wood, giving off a vibe that is perfect for both a date night or group outing with friends.

chauhan-beet-croquette-mussels

I know, I know. You don’t come to me to hear about decor, you want to hear about the food!

Well, let me first say that I haven’t even come close to trying everything on the menu, but believe me, that’s definitely a goal of mine. Actually, with New Year’s right around the corner, let’s make it a resolution!

Some favorites on my recent visit were the Kale Pakora Chaat, Mussels Tikka Masala, Gol Guppa Shots (a traditional Indian street food made with semolina puffs, black garbanzo beans, potato and mint-cilantro water), and the Beet Cauliflower Croquette.

Pictured above, clockwise:

 beet cauliflower croquette
cream of wheat crust, black eyed pea and collard green curry, beet chips

mussels tikka masala
tomato fenugreek sauce, artisan sourdough bread

kale pakora chaat
kale chips, spicy garbanzo, tamarind, mint, yogurt

I could seriously eat my weight in the kale pakora chaat. Seriously. For those of you that don’t know, pakora means fried snack. But hey, kale is a green and greens are healthy! Add that to my new year’s resolutions too — eat more kale pakora chaat. For my health, of course.

Oh gosh, I can’t forget to talk about the drinks! You know I love a good cocktail and this bar has them. Not just good, but really interesting, complex concoctions. Standouts for me were the Falling Star (vodka, muddled orange, coconut milk foam, orange blossom water, pink peppercorn and star anise) and the Rye Humor (rye, amaro, Licor 43, orange and old fashioned bitters and clove). So many more cocktails I still want to try, but I also have to make some time for their Indian spice-infused brews crafted by Maneet and Cool Springs Brewery. Cardamom Ale? Yep, I need to get on that.

Chauhan-dessert-chai-service

Bhapa Dohi Pot de crème and Chai Tea Service at Chauhan Ale & Masala House

Now to the last part of our evening, the part where I was so very thankful that I was wearing stretchy leggings and not silly skinny jeans. Already stuffed beyond my stuffing point, I somehow needed to make room for dessert and chai!

And not just any chai. Specifically, Chai Tea Service. Oh my. I love, love, love this. (one small little glitch and word of warning — the mugs are metal, which means they get hot when the hot chai hits them. Which means you need to let them cool a bit or you’re going to scorch your lips. I may have almost done that, but all is forgiven because those mugs and that teapot are just so darn cute I can’t bear the thought of not getting them again!)

The delightful Bhapa Dohi Pot de crème, a steamed honey and vanilla yogurt with hibiscus jelly, candied ginger and nan khatai (cookies) has since been replaced on the menu by a more seasonal Spiced Maple Jaggery Pot de Crème, which I have no doubt is also fantastic. Maple and cardamom custard, jaggery crumble, seasonal compote, and nan khatai — yep, I’ll be ordering that. Another new year’s resolution? Visit Chauhan Ale & Masala House again stat.

 

Chauhan Ale & Masala House

123 12th Avenue North
Nashville, TN 37203
(615) 779-3770

Mon – Sun 5- 11 pm

~Giveaway~

Contest Closed

The Winner is….

#75 Traci

Now that I’ve shared my experience with you, who would like to go experience Chauhan Ale & Masala House for themselves– for free?!?

They have very generously offered up a 3-course customized Chef’s Tasting for 2, featuring Chauhan favorites and off-the-menu creations. In addition, Maneet is also going to throw in a personalized autographed copy of her book, Flavors of My World!

To enter, all you have to do is this:

 

Mandatory

1. Leave a comment telling me what Chauhan dish or drink you’re most excited about trying. You can take a peek at the menu if you want more ideas than what I’ve provided.

For up to 2 additional entries, you can do either or both of the following. Note: You must leave a separate comment for each optional entry.

2. Follow me on Twitter (@betheats) and tweet “Spice it up! @betheats is giving away Dinner for 2 at @eatatchauhan. Enter here: http://bit.ly/1CS85fa”, then leave a comment telling me you’ve done so.

3. Sign up for the Chauhan Ale & Masala House newsletter and come back and tell me you did so (or just tell me you already have if that’s the case!)

 

Contest ends on Saturday, January 3rd at noon CST. Once the winner is chosen, I’ll make contact via email and post the name here on the blog. If they don’t respond within 48 hours, I’ll be forced to choose another, so be sure to check your email!

Archer Santa

I’m taking a few days off to be with family, unwind, and hopefully recharge, so before doing so, I wanted to wish you all a wonderful Christmas! May it be as magical for you as it is for my *almost* three-year-old munchkin!