Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Sea Bass Skewers + Blackbeard Cocktails #FoodieFootballFans

Note: This post is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by the National Football League (NFL) or any of its teams. All opinions and views expressed on our blogs are our own, not that of the NFL and/or any of its 32 teams. Any team names, logos or other symbols referenced are properties of their respective organizations. We are just big fans — and we want to share our love for our teams, the game and the food that brings us all together on game day.

With the official start of football season around the corner, it’s time to tailgate! In celebration, I’ve joined a group of bloggers from all over the country — all of whom are big football fans! — to bring you a multitude of tailgating recipe ideas for a terrific football party. Read on....

Okay, my friends and (regular) followers, you may pick yourself up from the floor when you've finished laughing that I am posting a recipe for a football-themed event. Actually, I'm posting three. This is just the first one. #FoodieFootballFans will be posting again in October and finally in January for the Superbowl.

A group of Foodie Football Fans has an incredible event lined up and they were short one California food blogger. That's where I come into the picture. One of their bloggers recommended me and I was up for the adventure.

So, I may not be an avid football fan, but I can cook to any theme and I do have an affinity for Oakland. It's right next to Berkeley where I lived for five years. And, my family and I love to eat in the East Bay. If you're ever in the area, the Rockridge Food Tour is fun, informative, and filling. If you aren't up for a full tour, a stop at Market Hall Cheese Shop is always on our list of to-dos in Oakland. Well, that and the Oaktown Spice Shop. Back to the task at hand. Football food.

So, I did what I always do when I'm in need of recipe inspiration: I put the question out on social media. Then, friends and family rang in. I received suggestions from Soul Food to a spin on 'oak' with acorn squash. But the answer that I settled on was: "Sebastian Janikowski, their kicker, nicknamed seabass. But could work as a non-meat alternative...." Thanks, Seth!

I did some reading about Sebastian Janikowski who is nearing two decades as an NFL kicker. That's practically football royalty.

Here we go...
The #FoodieFootballFans Line-Up

Spicy Mexican Cheese Dip by 2 Cookin Mamas
Salsa Verde by A Dish of Daily Life
Slow Cooker Sausage Corn Dip by A Joyfully Mad Kitchen
Sausage, Peppers + Onions Pigs in a Blanket by A Little Gathering
Grilled Jalapeno Poppers by A Mind Full Mom
Beer & Brats Bake by A Simpler Grace
Black Bottom Maple Pecan Pie Bars by An Oregon Cottage
Crispy Baked Buffalo Wings by And She Cooks
Blackberry BBQ Sticky Wings by Around My Family Table
Cheesy Pull Apart Garlic Bread by Beer Girl Cooks
Black Bean & Corn Salsa by Body Rebooted
Roasted Garlic BBQ Chicken Wings Recipe by Bread Booze Bacon
Smoky Jalapeno Poppers by Brunch-n-Bites
Loaded Sweet Potato Nachos by Bucket List Tummy
Deconstructed Smoked Chicken Chile Relleno by Cafe Terra
Chicken Spinach & Artichoke Dip French Bread by Cake 'n Knife
Cuban Sandwich Quesadillas by Casa de Crews
Grilled Asparagus Spears by Celebrating Family
Sweet and Salty Blueberry Popcorn by Club Narwhal
Buffalo Chicken Poppers by Coffee Love Travel
Sea Bass Skewers + Blackbeard Cocktails by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Buffalo Chicken Poppers by Dash of Herbs
Easy Chicken Roll Ups with Cream Cheese and Veggies by Family Food on the Table
Bottled Tailgate Cocktails by Feast + West
Smoked Brisket Texas Style by Foodal
Loaded Guacamole by foodbyjonister
Cincinnati Nachos by Foodtastic Mom
Cajun Red Beans and Andouille Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms by For the Love of Food
Grilled Shrimp Pizza by Glisten and Grace
Mini Bell Pepper Nachos by Hello Little Home
Slow Cooker Sweet Spicy Meatballs by Honey & Birch
BBQ Chicken Wontons by Lauren's Kitchen
Loaded Tailgate Tots by Life's Ambrosia
Ricotta & Fig Bites by Living Well Kitchen
Tailgate Tacos by Lizzy is Dizzy
Nashville Hot Chicken Wings by Loaves & Dishes
Cincinnati Chili Dip by Love & Flour
{Slow Cooker} BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwiches by Love Bakes Good Cakes
Tailgate Bloody Marys by Loves Food, Loves to Eat
Sweet Korean Chicken Wings by Macheesmo
Bacon Wrapped Tater Tots by Me and My Pink Mixer
Beer Sangria by Mixplorology
Crab Pretzels by Mom's Messy Miracles
Hot Bacon Dip by Nik Snacks
Build Your Own Bloody Mary Bar by Off the Eaten Path
Chowder Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers by Order in the Kitchen
Old Fashioned Sweet by Peanut Blossom
Baked Mac and Cheese Cups by Polka Dotted Blue Jay
Texas Toothpicks with Buttermilk Ranch by See Aimee Cook
Pretzel Turkey Meatballs (GF, DF, SF) by Shaws Simple Swaps
Hearty Vegetable Chili by Simple and Savory
Focaccia Pizza by Simplify, Live, Love
Sweet Potato Skins Stuffed with BBQ Ranch Pulled Pork by Sustaining the Powers
Bacon-Wrapped Cheeseburger Bites by The BakerMama
Buffalo Chicken Pasta Salad by The Creative Bite
German Potato Skins by The Crumby Cupcake
Old Bay Trail Mix by The Culinary Compass
Meat Lover's Pizza Bites by The Life Jolie
Raspberry Chipotle Black Bean Dip by The Mexitalian
Grilled Asian Chicken Wings & Shishito Peppers by The Secret Ingredient Is
Blackened Shrimp Tacos by The Speckled Palate
Honeydew Melon Refresher by Two Places at Once
Grilled Sauerkraut Stuffed Brats by West via Midwest
Sausage Apple and Sage Hand Pies by What A Girl Eats

And what I made...
Sea Bass Skewers

I ended up needing to augment my sea bass as the fish monger only had half a pound left when I made it to the market. So, I also used half a pound of swordfish. I figured that still fit the pirate/raider/swashbuckling kinda theme. Feel free to use whatever firm white fish you can get your hands on.


  • 8 ounces sea bass, cut into large cubes
  • 8 ounces swordfish, cut into large cubes
  • 3 T olive oil + more for grilling
  • 3 T mirin (rice cooking wine)
  • 1 T coconut aminos
  • 1 T gluten-free tamari
  • 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • 1 t grated ginger or ginger paste
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • baby potatoes, parboiled and halved
  • Also needed: skewers

Place fish cubes in a medium mixing bowl with olive oil, mirin, coconut aminos, gluten-free tamari, vinegar, and grated ginger. Stir in salt and pepper. Cover and let marinate for at least 10 minutes.

When you're ready to start cooking heat your grill or grill pan. Place the fish on the grill and cook, approximately 1 to 2 minutes on each side. Place the potatoes, cut-side down on the grill, to get nice char marks. Once the fish is cooked firm and has nice grill marks, remove them from the grill and assemble your skewers.

I did fish, potato, fish, and potato as the cut side of the potato was a more stable surface than the fish.

Blackbeard Cocktails

I wanted to create a black cocktail and started with another version of the Blackbeard that included Fernet Branca, an Italian aromatic spirit. I swapped in some absinthe instead. But I love the dark, spiced rum, stout beer, and the amazingly dark cuttlefish ink.

Ingredients makes 1 cocktail
  • 1 ounce spiced rum (I used Kraken)
  • 1/2 ounce absinthe
  • 1/8 t cuttlefish ink
  • 1/2 ounce stout beer (I used Old Rasputin)
  • Also needed: ice, cocktail shaker and strainer

Fill your shaker with ice. Pour in the rum and absinthe.

Add in the cuttlefish in. Cover and shake vigorously for a full 30 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass

Top with stout. Serve immediately.

We'll be back in October with team-themed recipes. Stay tuned!

PREVIEW: Volcanic Wine, Sicily, and Campania for #ItalianFWT

When I extended an invitation to the #ItalianFWT bloggers last month, I wasn't sure what I planned to uncork and pair as we talked about scorched terroir, volcanic wines, Sicily, and Campania. So. Many. Possibilities. 

Here's what the group has in store for you...

The #ItalianFWT Crew Presents...
listed alphabetically by blog name

Live #ItalianFWT Twitter Chat September 3, 11 a.m. ET: Participating bloggers and others interested in the subject will connect via a live Twitter chat. It's a nice bring way to bring in others interested in the subject who didn't get a chance to share a blog post. You can definitely still join the blog event if you're not available for the live chat.

And if you'd still like to join us with a post, it's not too late. Just drop me a line: constantmotioncamilla[at]gmail[dot]com. Cin cin!

Pop-Up Brunch with Chef Kendra Baker

This past weekend I got to attend the Westside farmers market pop-up brunch (click for the pop-up brunch series) by Chef Kendra Baker of the Penny Ice Creamery, Picnic Basket, and Assembly. I've worked with the Santa Cruz Farmers' Markets before, photographing their events. So when they asked, I said, "Absolutely!" In fact, as they are finishing up their fourth full season, we realized that I was at the inaugural event in 2012.

And though we make the Penny a regular destination - at Valentines, at Halloween, and whenever we get anywhere close to Capitola or Santa Cruz - I had never met Chef Kendra.

She is delightful, makes amazing food, and looks as though she's having fun doing it. Those are all necessary for success in the food world. The gal has it all! Yep, she's a regular food guru serving varied palates all over the Santa Cruz area.

I had thought this would be a great date. Unfortunately, Jake was wrapped up with the house remodel and under the gun with his deadline. So, he didn't get to come with me. Instead, I brought my littlest kitchen elf as my date. He loved it.

Here's what we ate...

Homemade Yogurt and Olive Oil Granola
with Homemade Apricot Jam

Seasonal Fresh Fruit and Assembly's Fresh Bread and Salty Butter

Kale and Farro with Dried Apricots and Toasted Coconut

Grilled Summer Squash, Pickled Green Beans, and Sweet Corn with a Fine Herb Aioli

Peak Summer Quiche with Cherry Tomatoes, Almonds, Basil, and Garden Variety cheese

Crispy Potatoes with Sweet Onions and Chili Jam

Assembly's Sticky Buns with Strawberries and Chocolate

Sparkling Wine Courtesy of Equinox Wine

D brought a book to read between courses and while I worked. It's such a relief that he's mostly self-sufficient. He's reading, or maybe it's re-reading, one of the Lord of the Rings books.

What a morning! Now I can't wait to check out Assembly and the Picnic Basket. Soon!

{Gluten-Free} Pasta All'Amatriciana + Abalone #VirtualSagra

Have you ever had one of those weekends when all the meals you planned were completely derailed? That was my weekend last weekend. I had planned to make Pasta All'Amatriciana for dinner on Friday night. But I was interviewing a chef and a brewer and the interview ran late. Then they wouldn't let me leave without a bag full of food. 

"You're not going to cook tonight," the chef declared. While I was grateful for the bounty - and not having to go home to cook while the boys stared hungrily at me - I really did want to make this dish. 

Saturday I had to make another dish I had planned because there was timing and black truffles involved. I knew my pasta dish would keep, but I was delayed again.

And, on the final day of the weekend, my son's birthday party lunch turned into almost dinner, so we weren't hungry for dinner at all on Sunday. Darn it! So, here we are at the beginning of the new week and I am late on posting this.

This past weekend would've been the 50th Amatriciana Festival in Amatrice, which obviously did not happen due to the massive and tragic earthquake last week. So a few bloggers in a group I'm in decided to cook up a big pot of Amatriciana, and, most importantly, donate to earthquake relief.

Mike from Undiscovered Italy posted this. It includes links to several sites if you wish to make a donation. I opted for Save the Children who, in coordination with the Italian Civil Protection from Lazio Region, has set up a child-friendly space where kids can play, socialize, learn, and express themselves as they recover from this trauma.

Pasta All'Amatriciana is named for the town of Amatrice, about an hour east of Rome. I love that it's a simple dish but has so much flavor! Just think: tomatoes are fried in the rendered fat from guanciale and tossed together with some cheese and pasta. Done.

A quick note about guanciale - I have seen it here and I know I've purchased it in San Francisco - but I was striking out as my deadline loomed. So, I ended up with a chunk of pancetta instead. I'll definitely remake this once I get my hands on some guanciale! Guanciale is cured pork jowl or cheek; its name is derived from guancia, which means 'cheek' in Italian.

Oh, and about the abalone, it is definitely not traditional...but it was one of those meals that I was supposed to make over the weekend and didn't. So, I put it on top of the Pasta All'Amatriciana. The family was split. Two of us thought it was fine. The other two said it didn't belong there.

Sauce (can be made ahead of time)
  • 3 T olive oil
  • 1 T butter
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 to 2 pounds ripe tomatoes
  • 1 to 2 T fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 t fresh oregano, chopped
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 C olive oil
  • 8 ounces guanciale or pancetta
  • 1 yellow or white onion, peeled and diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
  • 1 t hot red pepper flakes
  • 2 C sauce
  • 1/2 C diced fresh tomatoes
  • 1 pound pasta (I used a gluten-free spaghetti)
For Serving
  • parmigiano reggiano for serving
  • Meunière-Style Monterey Bay Abalone (click for my recipe), optional

Melt butter in olive oil over low heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until softened but not browned, approximately 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes (and their juices). Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes have melted down and the sauce has thickened, approximately 25-30 minutes.

Add herbs and season to taste with salt and pepper, as needed.

In a large pot, bring water to a boil and add a dash of salt and a splash of oil

In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, combine the olive oil, guanciale, onion, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Over low to medium heat, cook until the onion is softened and the guanciale has rendered much of its fat, approximately 12 to 15 minutes.

Add in the fresh tomatoes and cook until slightly softened. Pour in the tomato sauce and raise the heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and allow to simmer for 5 to 6 minutes.

While the sauce simmers, cook the pasta in the boiling water for a minute less than the package instructs. You want the pasta slightly more than al dente. Drain.

Add the pasta to the simmering sauce and toss until fully coated. It should be in the simmering sauce for at least another minute to finish cooking. Scoop the pasta into individual serving bowls and serve immediately, topped with grated cheese and abalone, if using. Allow diners to grate more cheese, if desired.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Berry Shrubs + A Cocktail #SundaySupper

As the end of summer approaches, gardens overflow with tomatoes and zucchini and berry bush boughs are overloaded with sweet fruit. This week's Sunday Supper Movement event is all about preserving the summer harvest to keep a taste of summer going all year long! Sue Lau of A Palatable Pastime is hosting. Thanks, Sue.

How to Harvest Summer Recipes
Main dishes

Cold-Process Fruit Shrub

I was introduced to shrubs when I met Lauren DeVine while working on my piece Commonwealth Wednesday Debut in Carmel, that was published on the Edible Monterey Bay blog in October of 2014.

What are shrubs? Shrubs are essentially fruit preserved with sugar and vinegar. They add a certain je ne sais quo to your cocktails and can be mixed with sparkling water for a refreshing homemade soda. You can make shrubs through a cooked process or a cold process; I do the latter.

This can be done with any fruit. And the more ripe, the better. This is a great way to preserve the fruit flavor even if the fruit itself is too far gone to really enjoy. Just don't use any fruit with mold, okay? As I think this is a great way to bottle up the taste of a season, I used some late summer strawberries from our CSA farm and some blueberries from the farmers' market.

  • 1 C fruit, cubed
  • 1/3 C organic granulated sugar
  • 3/4 C vinegar

Put the fruit and sugar in a pint-size mason jar. Put the lid on the jar and shake around to coat the fruit completely with sugar. Place the jar in the fridge and allow to macerate, at least, overnight; I usually leave it for a day or two.

Add the vinegar to the jar and agitate with a wooden spoon or chopstick to dissolve most of the sugar. Return it to the fridge for three to five to allow the flavors to develop.

After three to five days, strain the fruit out of the jar and transfer the flavored vinegar to a clean bottle. Shrubs should be refrigerated, but will last for several months. Unless, like us, you drink it all within a week!

For a non-alcoholic libation, fill a pint glass with ice. Add 2 T shrub to the glass and top with sparkling water. Stir to incorporate, add a cute straw and enjoy! Now for the grown-ups, here's one of my favorite things to do with a berry shrub...

Smashed Berry Shrub Bourbon Cocktail

  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • 1/2 ounce smashed berry shrub
  • 1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice
  • 2 dashes of bitters
  • 2 ounces sparkling water
  • organic flower for garnish

Add bourbon, shrub, citrus juice and bitters to a shaker filled with ice and give it a good shake.

Strain beverage into the glass. Add ice and top with sparkling water. Garnish with a flower. Cheers!

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest boardWould you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Marinated Squid Salad

Our CSF (that's community supported fishery) pick-up days is one of my favorite dinner days of the week. We love Real Good Fish for the quality, the freshness, and the philosophy! Today, Real Good Fish delivered to all of its members fresh market squid that was pulled up yesterday. Talk about fresh...

I wanted to make something simple that really highlighted the squid. Since we couldn't agree, I made two recipes. This was the first.

  • 1/2 to 3/4 lb fresh market squid, cleaned
  • 1 C organic heirloom cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4 C thinly sliced organic red onion
  • 3 T capers
  • 3 to 4 T olive oil
  • 1 to 2 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 to 2 T balsamic vinegar
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 to 2 T fresh parsley, minced

Place squid tubes and tentacles in a large pot. Cover them with water. Make sure they are submerged by at least 1" of water. Bring the water to a boil. As soon as the water boils, drain the squid. Once they are cool enough to handle, slice the tubes into rings. Place them in a large mixing bowl.

Add in the cherry tomatoes, sliced onions, and capers. Pour in the oil, lemon juice, and vinegar, starting with 3 T oil and 1 T each of the lemon juice and vinegar.

Fold in the parsley and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Adjust seasoning before serving. If you prefer it more tart, you may need more balsamic vinegar and lemon juice. I did!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Codorniz en Mole Poblano (Quail in Mole Poblano)

Yesterday I went to a mole making class with a bunch of friends. Click for that post which includes the recipe for Mole Poblano

We has so much fun and ended up with lots of leftover sauce. So, for dinner tonight I decided to use some quail to make Codorniz en Mole Poblano (Quail in Mole Poblano). This is so easy and so tasty...thanks to the delicious sauce from our class.

Ingredients serves 4 

  • 4 semi-deboned quail (I order mine from D'Artagnan, they are approximately 4 ounces each)
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 t fresh parsley, minced
  • mole poblano

Place quail on a platter. While the grill or grill pan heats, sprinkle with sea salt, pepper, and parsey. Drizzle with olive oil. Warm the mole sauce in a small skillet and keep warm.

When the pan is hot. Place the quail flat and cook them for 4 to 6 minutes. Check on them once or twice to make sure that they are not browning too quickly. Spoon some mole sauce on them and flip them over. Cook on the other side for 4 to 6 minutes. If they are still not cooked through, flip and cook for another few minutes.

To serve, ladle 1/4 C of mole poblano on each plate. Set the grilled quail on top of the sauce. Serve with more sauce on the side. Sprinkle with more salt and pepper, if desired.