August 31

7th St - Washington, DC

August 30

M St - Washington, DC

August 29

National Arboretum - Washington, DC

(more photos here)

Shrimp and Grits

My mom came for a visit this weekend. We'd both been drooling over this recipe for a while and wanted to try it out.

Disclaimer: there is absolutely no health involved in this posting.

Coincidentally, I had shrimp and grits for the first time in Charleston with my mom. I'm digging the cute clothe bag these came in.

Cook up 1 cup of grits according to package directions. Season with a little salt and pepper. When done, stir in 3 tbsps of butter and 1 cup of grated cheddar cheese.

Meanwhile, cook 6 slices of bacon. Remove from pan but retain grease. Cook 1 lb shrimp in bacon grease until pink. Add in 1 minced large garlic clove, 1/2 C sliced scallions, 2 tbsp chopped parsley, 4 tsps lemon juice, and cooked bacon. Cook for 3 more minutes.

Spoon shrimp mixture over cheesy grits. Enjoy. Be comforted. Feel like you're in the south even though you're probably not.


Blueberry muffins!

Yum! Recipe here

I wish every morning started with blueberry muffins

August 27

Arlington, VA

August 26

Neighborhood Office - 4th St, Washington, DC

August 25

Old Dominion - Washington, DC

Jamie's Eggplant Bruschetta

Tonight I went to see Xavier Rudd and Rodrigo y Gabriela play at Wolftrap (AWESOME show!). We went early, staked out a good spot on the lawn, and set up a big picnic. 

Inspired by Smitten Kitchen, I wanted to make an eggplant bruschetta but not so Greek in flavor. Couldn't find a recipe I liked, so I winged it...

(excuse the cell phone pictures, no cameras allowed at Wolftrap...)

Eggplant Bruschetta

1 eggplant
2 vine tomatoes
1-2 handfuls fresh basil
2 cloves garlic
olive oil
salt and pepper

Heat oven to 400. Cut eggplant into 1/2" cubes. Toss in a bowl with olive oil (enough to coat), salt, and pepper. Spread on a greased and/or lined cookie sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes... until they look adequately roasted. Pull the pan out a few times throughout roasting to toss the cubes around. Meanwhile, chop tomatoes into cubes (remove the gooey parts), mince garlic, and finely chop the basil. When eggplant is done and has cooled, toss everything together, add a little more oil, and salt and pepper to taste. 

If I weren't at a park, I'd have toasted the bread and maaaybe rubbed it with garlic (...what? too fussy?). Delicious! 

Ryan agrees. And you can trust him.

August 23

Creature growing in the M St Kitchen - Washington, DC

(p.s. Happy Birthday to my big brother, Dan!!)
(p.p.s. big thanks to Kate for showing me how to update my layout and make pictures bigger!)


I can't believe it's been a month and I haven't posted a baked good! I guess oven temperatures in this CRAZY hot summer has kept me away from my favorite hobby.

If you know me at all, you know I love toffee. I was very excited the other night when I found toffee crumbles in the baking aisle of the grocery store. How long have these been hiding from me?! I decided to make some cookies with toffee and chunks of chocolate.

Chocolate Toffee Cookies
Recipe adapted from here

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 C unsalted butter, melted
1 C brown sugar, packed
1/2 C white sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 egg
1 egg yolk
Toffee bits*

Preheat oven to 325. Sift together flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. In another bowl, cream together butter and sugars (you should use an electric mixer, but I was lazy and did not). Mix in vanilla, egg, and egg yolk. Stir in chocolate and toffee. *I never measure add-ins to cookies, I use the "dump as much as seems appropriate method." Drop spoonfuls on greased or lined cookie sheets (I use a silpat). Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until edges are golden brown.

Disclaimer: I forgot to add in the white sugar... give me a break, it's the weekend. They taste fine, but are a little less sweet than you might expect a cookie.

Verdict: The toffee bits kind of melted into the batter while baking, making the flavor a little less prominent than I would have hoped. I was hoping for a toffee crunch. As for the cookie, this is one of my easy, go-to recipes, but not my favorite. Perhaps I'll test some more and post... Krishnan tells me of some pretentious NY Times recipe that could be coming to the M St Kitchen soon!

August 22

M Street - Washington, DC

Indian Dinner Night!

Krishnan made us an Indian feast tonight! On the plate are dal palak, aloo gobi, naan, and rice. It was delicious! I love roommate dinners...

M St - Washington, DC

August 20

Sunset over M St - Washington, DC

(Happy Birthday AMANDA!)

August 19

Wizards Court, Verizon Center - Washington, DC

August 18

Bar 7 - Washington, DC

August 17

Dinner - Washington, DC

Happy Birthday Krishnan!

Krishnan is finally old enough to vote today. To celebrate, we took him out for greasy meats, then had all the neighbors over for the household favorite dessert, apple dumplings. Check out Danielle's blog for the recipe!

M Street - Washington, DC

August 15 - Guest Post

Unfortunately, I was stuck on a bus for 6 hours yesterday with absolutely nothing interesting to photograph. I also was too tired to remember my camera the rest of the day. So August 15 will be the first guest post! Danielle captured this gem of Americana the other day. Where else can you get a bucket of cheese balls WITH a shovel other than the land of the free and home of the brave?!

Soon to be featured on ThisIsWhyYou'reFat - Washington, DC

August 13

Barnard College - New York, NY

August 13

Carl Schurz Park - New York, NY

August 12

Rainy Day - Arlington, VA

August 11

BGR - Washington, DC

Less Is More

This is the best tomato sauce. Really. And it's so simple... 3 ingredients.

This sauce is nothing new to the food blogging world. I first heard about it here. And it's been here, and here, and here, and here. You probably don't read as many food blogs as I do though...

Ok, so you take a 28 oz. can of whole peeled tomatoes (apparently San Marzano tomatoes are a big deal, but our local Safeway doesn't have such delicacies), 5 tablespoons of butter, a whole onion, peeled and chopped in half, and put it all in a pot. Cook it for 45 minutes. Take out and discard onion halves. That's it. I put it on top of thin spaghetti. SO GOOD.

August 9

Joe - McLean, VA
(this was a home run btw)

Breakfast in Pennsylvania

I ran home for a quick trip to visit Ryder and Matty yesterday:

It was so nice to see these little men!

This morning, I stopped in to visit Uncle Rich and my cousin Zach who were in town visiting my dad and checking out Musikfest. We made a big breakfast before I hit the road back home.

I couldn't find my favorite pancake recipe, but this one is pretty good too.

1 1/2 C flour
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1 1/4 C milk
1 egg
3 tbsp melted butter
(I added a dash of cinnamon and vanilla today for a kick)

Stir together dry ingredients, make a hole in the center and add in wet ingredients. Stir until smooth. Let sit for 10 minutes. Ladle onto skillet heated to 350°, when bubbles start to rise, flip, cook until golden brown.

Also on the plate: blueberry syrup (throw some fresh blueberries and maple syrup in a pot on medium-low heat while you're doing everything else). bacon (because what's breakfast without bacon?). and strawberries and blueberries (just because).

Also, Marley says hi :-)

August 8

Marley - Bethlehem, PA

August 7

Baby Feet - Bethlehem, PA

August 6

Bar - Arlington, VA

August 5

Miserable people on storm-induced delayed metro trains - Arlington, VA

August 4

Brasserie Beck - Washington, DC

August 3

Mall - Arlington, VA

August 2

Meet the Crystal City Bombers, my after school activity for the past 2 years:

Big W - TheBurbs, VA

August 1

My Room, Washington, DC

(p.s.... it's August?!)

Uncle Fran Salmon

Last night, we grilled a big dinner for friends. Tom brought over fresh home grown tomatoes and hand made mozzarella (what?? I want to make mozzarella!) Also on the menu: Uncle Fran Salmon

Uncle Fran was one of the all around best people I've ever known. He used to make us this salmon whenever we'd go to visit. Not only is it delicious, but I like to make it as a tribute to the best Uncle ever.

There's no real recipe, but you take equal(ish) parts of mayonnaise and dijon musturd, some squirts of fresh lemon juice, and chopped up fresh tarragon (or dried I suppose). Mix it all together and slather generously on both sides of the salmon, grill until flaky. Mmmm.

Also on the plate: grilled baby asparagus and Danielle's pesto pasta.