Steak Frites: Recreating a French Classic

Just back from a trip to Washington, D.C., I wanted to post about a quintessential French brasserie favorite which had been right under my nose for several years… a dish called Steak Frites. A snow storm kept me in the Capital for an extra day, which led to a second meal at Le Diplomate, the town’s new and very French eatery on 14th street. Never having ordered Steak Frites before (though it is an oft offered menu item in many places), I was completely bowled over by the great pleasure I had eating this extremely simple dish: steak with fries, accompanied with compound butter and aioli. This was the stuff of simple pleasures, the embodiment of steak and potatoes.

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Free Cooking Class on 3/26/14: Garden to Table Cooking at Yorba Linda Public Library

Wednesday March 26th 2014 at the Yorba Linda Public Library!
Wednesday March 26th 2014 at the Yorba Linda Public Library!

Don’t forget! This Wednesday, OurLocaltopia is teaching another free cooking class at the Yorba Linda Public Library, as part of the “Food For Thought” series. This week’s class focuses on Garden to Table Cooking and will cover how to make the most out of your backyard edible garden or your weekly farmers market spoils. The Jonathans will provide up close demonstrations of at least four unique dishes, with samples and recipes available to the audience. Class will be held in the Library’s downstairs community room and will run from 7pm to about 8:30pm. Bring your friends, and enjoy a free night of delicious culinary education! See ya there!

~ OurLocaltopia

Elegant Strawberry Conserve

Once sufficently cooled, place your finsihed conserve in a glass jar. We suggest Weck jars. It's that easy... Enjoy!
Strawberry Conserves.

Strawberry season comes early in Southern California and is just around the corner for the rest of the country! We wanted to post about this AMAZINGLY EASY Strawberry Conserve recipe, inspired by one of our go-to books, Canal House Cooks Everyday. Continue reading “Elegant Strawberry Conserve”

Seaside Supper: A Curated Dinner & Demo in Ventura County

OurLocaltopia headed to Ventura County to cook for an ocean front retreat!

This week, OurLocaltopia was invited to a seaside vacation home in Ventura county to curate a meal for the Sew n’ Sews, a group of avid quilters who take this yearly retreat to work on projects and bond with their friends. We were thrilled to be cooking in a gorgeous kitchen that  had panoramic coastal and ocean views. The menu for the night featured a variety of locally sourced produce, including delicious Ventura County strawberries and included a demonstration of the prep and execution of Fritto Misto. Below is our recap of the evening, including photos and recipes. If you are interested in having a similar event at your next getaway, party or gathering, don’t hesitate to contact us! Continue reading “Seaside Supper: A Curated Dinner & Demo in Ventura County”

Sweet and Savory: Rosemary Pine-Nut Cookies

Perfect Rosemary Pinenut cookies, fresh from the oven. An essential sweet & savory dessert!

Back from a recent dinner at Pizzeria Mozza in Newport Beach, we were stuffed with blessed satisfaction from too many great dishes on the menu.  To top off the amazing salume, antipasto, salads and pizza we enjoyed, was their signature Butterscotch Budino, served with delectable tiny cookies on the side, a salty accompaniment to the sweet custard.  As full as we were, the cookies caught our attention!  The cookies sported a base of sweet-salty polenta shortbread, topped with a pine nut nougat studded with vanilla beans, and perfumed with needles of fresh rosemary.

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Late Winter Gardening for the Southern California “Homestead”

These beets are ready for harvest!

The Southern Californian winter garden is a delicious one. Cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and kale, carrots, beets, and radishes, onions and leeks, and an astounding array of lettuces can all be pulled from your garden’s soil. The winter is starting to come to a close but there remain plenty of options for the winter gardener. The time for tomatoes, peppers, squash and cucumber is just around the corner. A post on the summer vegetable garden is soon to come. But today’s late-winter gardener should focus on crops that grow quickly (to make room for soon-to-be-planted summer crops) and on planting fruit trees. Continue reading “Late Winter Gardening for the Southern California “Homestead””