Blended Bone Broth

 

I've been enjoying snowy days snuggled up at home more than almost anything. Watching the snow fall while a good meal is simmering away may be my favorite thing in the entire world. Enter bone broth. Aside from the health benefits of bone broth (especially when veggies are involved) this recipe is absolutely delicious. The umami is on point and it is oh-so filling. 

We live just a mile from a local butcher, so when I need bones, that's where I look first. The owner recommended I do a mixture of beef bone and pigs foot and ohhhhh man was it a good combination. This recipe is veggie heavy and yields a deliciously flavorful and complex broth.

 
 

Blended Broth

 

Ingredients

beef bone
pigs foot
1 leek, cleaned and halved
 1 white onion, halved
8 cloves garlic
6 dried shitake mushrooms
parmesan rind (optional)
3 carrots, cut into 3 chunks
3 celery stalks, halved
1/2 bunch parsley
1" ginger, sliced
water
2T chopped parsley
salt + pepper

Instructions

  1. Place all in ingredients *except for parsley* in slow cooker. Cover with water and let simmer on low for 18-24 hours. Add in parsley for last 2 hours.
  2. Strain broth into a large bowl, reserving beef bone for future use. and separating out onion, mushroom, garlic cloves and carrots. 
  3. once slightly cooled, place broth in high powered blender with reserved veggies. Blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper as needed and top with chopped fresh parsley before serving. 
 

Food-ventures in Patagonia

 

Our trip to Chilean and Argentinian Patagonia was filled with a few bumps and some detours, but each hiccup lead to wonderful experiences we hadn't expected or planned. Our flight out was delayed due to Denver's first snow storm of the season (thanks denvy), which made us miss all of our connections. After hours on the phone with United, we had a new game plan, flying out the following day and spending three unplanned days in Santiago before continuing on to Punta Arenas. 

We knew that regions surrounding Santiago were famous for their vineyards and wine, so we hopped on a bus to do a little exploration for ourselves. Our first stop was Bodegas Re, an amazing little vineyard with some kick butt wine blends. They invent their own blends such as Chardonnoir, Pinotel, Cabergnan, etc. By chance, we met another couple from the states on this tour, who kindly invited us to tag along to another vineyard, lunch by the sea, and exploring Vina del Mar and Valparaiso on the way. 

 
 

Our lunch by the ocean consisted of some of the freshest sea food and of course, more wine.

Southern Chile is known for its lamb and BBQ. Lamb is smoked in small rooms within the restaurant, surrounded by glass windows, giving patrons a front row seat to the process. One of my favorite meals was Pichanga, an appetizer of olives, pickled vegetables, tomato, egg, cured meat and cheese. We ordered it at multiple restaurants and it we loved seeing each region's take on the dish. 

One of the regions most famous drinks is a Calafate Sour. Similar to a pisco sour, it is made with Calafate berries, which grow like wildfire throughout Patagonia. It was a sweet & sour frothy drink that paired perfectly with the carnita tacos and pile of fries ;).

Our backpacking trek consisted of freeze dried meals, peanut butter, and water, fresh from the glacial runoff that tears its way through the national park. It's so clean that it doesn't need to be filtered or purified in order to drink it. 

After backpacking, we enjoyed hot bevvies, more PICHANGA, and some whiskey. 

A couple that worked at the Hostel in Puerto Natalaes were kind enough to make us a delicious dinner after our trek: a heaping bowl of pasta with avocado sauce and artichoke hearts.

Bread is generally served with house-made salsa or garlic aioli. And as you can see, portion sizes are BIG. 

In El Calafate, we stumbled upon the small storefront of Helmich, a distillery founded by a man, whose family had immigrated to Argentina from Germany in the early 1900s. The spirits were amazing and he recommended that we dine at La Zaina, a restaurant just up the block. 

We enjoyed one of my favorite meals of the trip, accompanied by good wine and a $22 pour of whiskey from Argentina's first single malt. The mushroom pasta and trout risotto were rich, delicious and so filling.  

We killed time at numerous coffee shops and cafes throughout the trip, reading and talking about what we were looking forward to in 2017. Our trip was a combinations of successes and blunders, and I wouldn't have had it any other way.

Bubbly Bar

 

New Years Eve is right around the corner, and there is no better way to celebrate than with a new kind of bubbly. While sparkling like champagne, Prosecco is specifically produced in Italy, with fruit forward notes and a sweeter flavor profile. It’s perfect for dressing up with slices of fresh fruit, a few drops of liqueur, flavored simple syrup or with a sweet sugar rim. The possibilities are endless. Want to go alcohol free? We have a bright citrus mocktail that’s perfect for the occasion.

 
 

 

Prosecco Bar Tips

Fresh Fruit 
I used raspberries and lemon slices, but you can really use anything! Sliced strawberries, fresh pineapple and blueberries are all great options.

Frozen Green Grapes
Frozen grapes are a great way to keep drinks cold without the risk of watering it down as guests chat it up at your party.

Fruit Liqueur
I used a berry liqueur which added a lovely amount of color to the prosecco, but you could add in an herbal or other fruit liquor to provide options.

Flavored Simple Syrup
Mint or Orange (recipes below) are great base for salting the rim of a glass, or adding a little touch of flavor to your drink.

Sugar Rim
have an area where guests can sugar the rim of their glass, or go the extra mile and do it beforehand. You can use flavored simple syrups or lemon juice as the base.

Fresh Herbs
Mint, rosemary, or thyme are a great addition to a glass to engage all of your senses and add just a touch of flavor.

Juice
Orange, lemonade, cranberry, pomegranate, you name it. Prosecco’s bright and sparkling nature lends itself perfectly to mixing with fruit juice.

 
 

 

Citrus Mocktail

 
 

Ingredients

4oz Sprouts Limoncello Mocktail
1.5oz Orange Simple Syrup (recipe below)
Sprig of Mint
Ice
Splash of Club Soda

Instructions

  1. Combine Limoncello Mocktail and simple syrup and stir well.
  2. Add ice, sprig of mint, and float a bit of club soda on top.
 
 

 

Simple Syrup

These twists on the classic simple syrup are bright, delicious and perfect for loads of other cocktails. 

 
 

Orange Simple Syrup

Ingredients

1c water
scant cup sugar
juice from one orange
zest from ½ orange peel

Instructions

  1. Combine water and sugar, orange juice and zest in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer and stir until all of the sugar has dissolved.
  2. Chill in the fridge until ready to use.

Mint Simple Syrup

Ingredients

1c water
scant cup sugar
handful of fresh mint

Instructions

  1. Combine water and sugar, and mint in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer and stir until all  all of the sugar has dissolved. Reduce to low and let simmer gently for 5 minutes longer.
  2. Strain out mint and chill in the fridge until ready to use.