Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Cooking: Spaghetti Squash

Well, with all this eating and over-indulging that I've been doing, I've had to consider some new alternatives to eating pasta when at home.  A coworker suggested that I give spagetti squash a try and so I thought, why not?

Although its more widely available during the Fall, you can usually find spaghetti squash all year round.  I went to Whole Foods and picked a nice bright yellow one out for my dinner.

Spaghetti Squash!
The three most popular ways to cook spaghetti squash are to (1) bake it in the oven (2) boil it (3) microwave it.  In the interest of time (oven takes 60+ minutes and boiling takes about 30-40 minutes), I decided to microwave it. 

Many people say to split the squash in half lengthwise to cut the cooking time, but I could barely get my knife through the squash.  So I'll just skip that step and take the extra cook time lol.

Microwaving Spaghetti Squash:
Step 1: Take a fork and poked holes all over the squash (otherwise you will have exploded squash all over your microwave from the pressure).

Poke holes all over the squash

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Maison Kayser

Last summer, I had read about a new bakery opening on the UES.  Similar to Laduree, Maison Kayser is a well-regarded French bakery/cafe with branches around the world and they've finally opened a NYC branch.  If you need to know anything about me, its my love for bread and baked goods (mostly bread though heee).  So of course I was super interested in scoping out this new bakery known for its bread.

A friend suggested we meet for dinner at Maison Kayser and I was super surprised to find out that they offer full meals at the cafe!

As I rolled myself in, I was immediately greeted with a beautiful display of tarts, pastries, desserts, breads, rolls, croissants, and all sorts of goodies. 

Front area with bakery goods on display
Then when I looked to the right, I saw the large and spacious dining area:

Cafe and dining area
As I dragged myself away from the display cases, my attention was next attracted to the big windows showing the bakery in the back.  Where bread is born!!!  Fresh baguettes were still coming out of the oven even at 6:30pm.  

Windows in the back of the dining area showing the bakery areas

Monday, March 4, 2013

Empellon Taqueria

I'm baaaaaaack!  Did you guys miss me?  I know I know... I've been MIA for a bit, but its been hectic the last couple weeks.  I'm excited to be back in action though!

Last week, I met up with two former coworkers for dinner at Empellon Taqueria in the West Village.  I love exploring the West Village but I always get so confused trying to find my way around! Empellon Taqueria is such a cute gem in the West Village but if you don't look closely, you could walk right past its nearly unmarked door (as I did...twice).   

Outside of Empellon Taqueria
When you walk in, you'll find a colorful and awsome looking bar area on the right.  On the left, you'll find a cozy dining area with exposed brick walls, great lighting, and well placed art/fixtures that create a fantastic atmosphere.

Awsome bar with a colorful background and fully stocked bottles