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Dec 20, 2014
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Tweet Beat: The week’s best tweets from #STL foodies

Friday, December 19th, 2014

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Crushing deconstructed Pho Ga @MaiLeeSTL @PhoKingQui

First customer! @SeoulTaco @SeoulQSTL #number1 pic.twitter.com/xDiDAScDFm

What an interesting promo RT @McDo_PH: Tomorrow, WHITE VEHICLES get a FREE BACON CHEESEBURGER at McDo Drive Thru!

i don’t like the way cold medicine makes me feel, so i made chicken ‘n’ dumplings with tabasco instead.

Cheeseburgers taste better after 1AM. That’s scientific fact.

Something is up.. A millennial just used cash at the grocery store. I saw it.

Yup, that’s an olive loaf @BolyardsMeat

Okay, tried a Bulletproof-style coffee this morning. How long til IQ points start rising?

Adult w/o kid using miniature customer-in-training cart at Schnucks. Creepy or whimsical? (THE FORMER.)


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By the Book: Gina Homolka’s Shrimp and Grits

Saturday, December 13th, 2014



I hate winter, but I do love the holiday season. It’s a wonderful excuse to get together with your favorite people to eat and drink delicious things until you’re fit to burst. I did exactly that at my first Thanksgiving of the year (Yes, there was a first Thanksgiving. There was also a second Thanksgiving, and a third, too.), and I definitely gained five pounds after that one day.

I regret nothing, but I have unsuccessfully attempted to detox ever since. I limited myself to only whole-grain carbs; that lasted one day. I tried to sub a meal a day for green juice; that lasted two days. I even tried going vegan; that lasted one meal. So I hoped The Skinnytaste Cookbook by blogger Gina Homolka – with its light on calories, big on flavor claims – would help me stay on the straight and narrow.




Each recipe in the book includes the serving size, calorie count and nutritional information, which is helpful for the health-conscious. I also liked that the recipes don’t necessarily sound like diet food. Chicken enchiladas or Mongolian beef and broccoli don’t sound like diet dinners – they sound like something I want to eat. I had nearly everything I needed at home to make Homolka’s Kiss My (Shrimp and) Grits, and I was curious to see if her healthier version could stand up to a buttery favorite. Her recipe calls for ingredients with big flavors like Old Bay, bay leaf and a little bit of ham, all of which go in the sauce with the shrimp. The grits had a little added creaminess and saltiness from the single ounce of Harvati cheese.




Unsurprisingly, the limited use of fat and salt was restrictive. Only 1 teaspoon of oil to sear a whole pound of shrimp? It’s hard to get good color on them with so little fat. Also, the recipe uses ½ tablespoon of butter in for the entire four servings of grits… Let’s be honest, I use that much on a piece of toast. In the end, the dish lacked the richness one expects with shrimp and grits, but at only 311 calories per serving, it did help assuage my triple-Thanksgiving guilt.




Kiss My (Shrimp and) Grits
4 servings

2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1¼ cups fat-free milk
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 cup quick-cooking grits (not instant)
½ Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 oz. Havarti cheese, shredded (1/3 cup)
1 Tbsp. grated Pecorino Romano cheese

24 (about 1 lb.) peeled and deveined jumbo shrimp
1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning
1½ tsp. olive oil
2 oz. lean smoked ham steak, finely chopped
¼ cup minced shallots
½ cup caned fire-roasted diced tomatoes with green chiles, drained (I recommend Muir Glen)
2/3 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 bay leaf
Freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
1 lemon wedge
3 Tbsp. sliced scallions, for garnish

• For the grits: In a medium pot, combine ¼ cup water, the chicken broth, milk and salt and bring to a boil over medium heat. Slowly stir in the grits. Return to a boil, reduce the heat to the lowest setting, cover with a fitted lid, and simmer, stirring every 5 minutes or so to prevent the grits from sticking to the bottom, adding more water if necessary, until smooth like cream of wheat, 28 to 30 minutes. Stir in the butter and cheeses, remove the pan from the heat, and keep warm.
• For the shrimp: Sprinkle the shrimp with Old Bay. Heat a large saute pan over high heat. Add 1 teaspoon of the olive oil and the shrimp and cook until browned, about 1 minute. Flip the shrimp and cook 1 more minute or until opaque. Transfer the shrimp to a plate.
• Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the remaining ½ teaspoon oil and the ham. Cook until slightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the shallots and cook, stirring, until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the drained tomatoes, chicken broth, bay leaf, and black pepper to taste. Increase the heat to medium and simmer until the sauce thickens and reduces slightly, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, add the shrimp and parsley, and finish with a squeeze of lemon juice. Stir well and discard the bay leaf.
• Divide the grits among 4 serving plates and spoon the shrimp and sauce over the top of each. Sprinkle with scallions and serve.

Reprinted with permission from Clarkson Potter Publishers

What healthy twists do you put on your favorite dishes to lighten them up at home? Tell us in the comments below for a chance to win a copy of The Skinnytaste Cookbook.

Tweet Beat: The week’s best tweets from #STL foodies

Friday, December 12th, 2014

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Thank you @SeoulTaco ! #STL 

I feel like I might put on my bad decision jeans, drink another glass of wine, and listen to #serialpodcast.

Whenever I drink wine, I start singing Beyonce’s 7/11 song and I’m not even going to apologize for that

I just dropped/spilled half a jar of @LUXARDOUSA cherries. A sadder day have never happened. #taps

“Good banks… I mean really good banks… Always have gumball machines.” – my youngest

This is the coolest US made thing to come out of Missouri in a long time. #foeders

Still thinking about the killer @saucedonwheels bona fide burger from @4HandsBrewery last night. That stout ketchup was next level!

what a pleasure. rabbit ala moutarde personally served by chef. @SAUCEmag @RestaurantSTL @ilovebuvette


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Eat This: Il Bel Lago’s Fettuccine Alfredo

Sunday, December 7th, 2014


During winter’s onslaught, there’s nothing we crave more than a bowl of rich fettuccine Alfredo from Il Bel Lago. Twirl the toothsome noodles around your fork, coating them in a decadent sauce of cream, butter and Parmesan. It’s an old-school Italian-American classic that will warm you even in the face of another polar vortex.

11631 Olive Blvd., Creve Coeur, 314.994.1080, bellagostl.com

-photo by Carmen Troesser

Tweet Beat: The week’s best tweets from #STL foodies

Friday, December 5th, 2014

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Naughty Elf…

Just saw this blurb on Carlos from @RestaurantSTL ! I must say he is the best waiter all-around in STL! @SAUCEmag pic.twitter.com/Mrkl3o110K

Imagine: a gluten free, vegan crossfitter. You’d never get a word in edgewise.

nothing tastes better than contraband cheese.

Adelaide, you’re cut off! @ Rhinegeist

Rudolf should be very nervous here…#Helsinki

Don’t buy a box of @strangedonuts after you’ve been drinking. I have no idea what that delicious thing was I just ate.

My dinner: fruit snacks and ibuprofen. This day can suck it.


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Tweet Beat: The week’s best tweets from #STL foodies

Friday, November 21st, 2014

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I believe that Crown Candy in St. Louis overdoes it by putting 2 lettuce leaves on its legendary BLT. One is plenty.

Bucket list moment: meeting this culinary giant. @ruhlman, come back to #STL when it’s time to talk #howtobraise. https://twitter.com/LigayaFigueras/status/535418409258070016/photo/1

i woke up from a dream in which i was baking pound cake at a bakery called “Pound Town”. wow. thanks, brain. “Welcome to Pound Town”

Milk Punch time! @Bigbadchef @4RosesBourbon #snowday #sundayfunday https://twitter.com/bmox/status/534110609739366400/photo/1

A first tonight: Saw my name appended to my seat on the restaurant’s computer seating chart. Should’ve worn my giant-sandwich disguise.

Can you even imagine how fresh the rangoons must be in China?

Move over Cronut (trademark symbol), at Pastaria were making Geloni!! https://twitter.com/CroyAnne/status/535512400649142273/photo/1

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Tweet Beat: The week’s best tweets from #STL foodies

Friday, November 14th, 2014

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Sooo he’s not happy with his impulsive booze BUCKET purchase. @ Venice Cafe St. Louis http://instagram.com/p/vKLCOSMyMC/ 

I love how the @PerennialBeer announcements are made. Abraxas Release. #Beer

This is good! https://twitter.com/StoneBrewNate/status/533095982729543680/photo/1

Beer cocktail with @Schlafly TIPA and Kölsch makes a lovely intermezzo @FSStLouis from Craft-Mixologist-Somm-Jorie. https://twitter.com/schlaflybrewer/status/533082416555257856/photo/1

Buying baby shower gifts is the perfect time for me to secretly buy baby food for myself… #keepinitweird #thisiswhyimsingle

Sometimes your phone autocorrects cranberries to cranbroritos.

I love watching little kids sass Gordon Ramsey. “Can you leave now? I’m trying to concentrate.” #masterchefjr


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By the Book: Yotam Ottolenghi’s Sprouting Broccoli with Sweet Tahini

Saturday, November 8th, 2014



I am always on the hunt for a good salad – preferably one that’s inventive and full of vegetables, because there’s nothing that leaves me hungrier than a bowlful of lettuce. So I made Yotam Ottolenghi’s Sprouting Broccoli with Sweet Tahini from his newest book, Plenty More. Make no mistake: this salad is delicious, a hearty combination of broccolini, haricot vert and snow peas with a dressing of tahini, honey, garlic and soy. There’s a heaping 1½ cups of cilantro too, which Ottolenghi says is one of his favorite ingredients (sorry, cilantro haters). The dish – especially the dressing – offers a multitude of flavors, from sweet to salty to spicy, the last thanks to raw garlic.

What I love about this book, though, is that it’s composed of vegetarian dishes for any audience. There’s something for everyone, from his tagliatelle with walnuts and lemon – an updated version of your fettuccine alfredo – to his fried upma with poached egg, a dressed-up version of the South Indian breakfast staple. (I’ll be making that next!)






Sprouting Broccoli with Sweet Tahini
Serves 4

10½ oz./300 g. purple sprouting broccoli or 9 oz./250 g. broccolini
4 oz./120 g. haricot vert, trimmed
6½ oz./180 g. snow peas, trimmed
1 Tbsp. peanut oil
1½ cups/20 g. cilantro leaves
2½ Tbsp. sesame seeds, toasted
1 tsp. nigella seeds

For the sauce:
About 3½ Tbsp./50 g. tahini paste
About 2 Tbsp. water
1 small clove garlic, crushed
½ tsp. tamari soy sauce
1½ tsp. honey
1 Tbsp. cider vinegar
½ tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste

In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients for the sauce along with the salt. You want the consistency to be smooth and thick but pourable, a bit like honey; add a tiny bit of extra water or tahini paste if needed and whisk well.

Trim off the broccoli leaves. If the stems are thick, cut them lengthwise in half or in quarters so you are left with long, thinner stems, similar in proportion to the haricot vert.

Bring a pot filled with plenty of unsalted water to a boil. Blanch the haricot vert for about 4 minutes, until just cooked but still retaining a bite. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the haricot vert to a colander, run under plenty of cold water, and then dry well with a tea towel. In the same water, blanch the snow peas for 2 minutes. Use the slotted spoon to remove them from the water, then refresh and dry as before. Repeat the same process with the broccoli, blanching it for 2 to 3 minutes.

Once all the vegetables are cooked and dry, mix them together in a bowl with the oil. You can now serve the salad in two ways. Mix most of the cilantro and seeds with the vegetables and pile up on a serving dish. Pour the sauce on top and finish with the remaining cilantro and seeds. Alternatively, pile the vegetables on a serving plate, dotting them with cilantro leaves and sprinkling with seeds as you go, and serve the sauce in a bowl on the side.

What’s your most creative vegetarian dish? Tell us about it in the comments section below for a chance to win a copy of Plenty More. We’ll announce the winner in next week’s By the Book column.

Tweet Beat: The week’s best tweets from #STL foodies

Friday, October 31st, 2014

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October 30, 2014: the day I saw a squirrel eating an entire slice of pizza in my backyard pic.twitter.com/8Ufs78qPgh

I’m crouched in your hallway, glaring at you from behind my mask.

Gimme candy. https://twitter.com/thummprints/status/528182329722691584/photo/1

We stopped buying butter @nichestlouis, and now purchase cream from a Missouri dairy. Quality much better #buttah pic.twitter.com/KZA1Un5UPX

St Louis style @Mariobatali @hseanbrock @PappySmokehouse @mattduckor   Awesome pic.twitter.com/yjEKAZ6ET7

Channeling my inner @Cory_King_ in the brewhouse today. And by that, I mean I’m eating directly out of a bag of brown sugar.

The best #bread in #stl. Hands down. @CompanionBaker pic.twitter.com/8IqdltuvSM

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Tweet Beat: The week’s best tweets from #STL foodies

Friday, October 17th, 2014

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Man what I wouldn’t give for a @Schlafly #beer to go with this. #NYC


someones asian food smells far better than my pbj #starving and now i am craving bahn mi so #A4 #currytofu #amazing #vegan

let’s all congratulate @jonathanmoxey on his promotion to the position of train conductor for @PerennialBeer!

Phil Marshall headed to @beardfoundation house for @cookingkid @thelibertinestl dinner on Fri. He’s such an insider. http://www.saucemagazine.com/blog/?p=35238 

“…like a fat kid loves cake.”  @Chouquettestl @SimoneFaure https://twitter.com/SeanCollinsSTL/status/522417180814479360/photo/1

Everyday at 4 pm cst; @nichestlouis we taste the whole entire menu. #thecarnage show far https://twitter.com/nhereford/status/522134564546695168/photo/1

R&D night at @thegoodpiestl with @jayeedoubleeff . Down the rabbit hole we go.

“This is my third chicken of the day. I’ve been eating chicken since I walked through the door. Look at me! I look like a chicken!” #chefben

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