Tag Archives: foodie

The Best Chicken Soup

This chicken soup that (I hope) you are about to make is the BEST. It is so flavorful and does the body and soul good. And by the time you read this, we’ll be feeling like winter again AND maybe it’ll be close to the weekend so it gives you time to buy all the ingredients because…well…there is something about a hot bowl of soup on Sunday. I actually used up a lot of ingredients hanging out in the fridge to make this baby. I don’t know about you, but I never really feel like cooking on Sunday, but I do it. This soup simmering on the stove for all of 45 minutes makes it okay. And full disclosure…this recipe is inspired from Ambitious Kitchen’s Best Chicken Soup You’ll Ever Eat. It actually pops up FIRST when you type in the words “best chicken soup.” Everything I’ve ever made by Monique has been delightful so TRUST. I made a couple of modifications to add a bright lemony flavor to it but the OG stands on its own just splendidly.

Here’s how you make it.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil. I actually next leveled and used duck fat (yum)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, grated
  • 1/2 sweet or yellow onion, diced finely
  • 1-2 celery stalks plus leaves, chopped (we chop very finely because my people don’t want to crunch it)
  • 2 carrots, sliced thinly
  • 1 TBS fresh grated ginger plus it’s juices
  • 1TBS fresh grated turmeric (you can use 1 teaspoon ground turmeric). You want the color!
  • Juice of one lemon plus its zest (zest it first)
  • 4-6 cups chicken broth or stock
  • 1 pound (or about 4) boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme, leaves only OR you can use a mix of dried herbs as I did here (1/2 tsp. of what you love, taste and adjust at the end)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup pearl or Israeli couscous, or tiny pasta like pastina
  • 2/3 cup frozen peas to be tossed in at the end
  • 1 parmesan rind (scrape the stamp off with a knife)

In a large pot, get the olive oil or fat shimmering. Add the onions and the celery and saute about 3 minutes until softened. Add carrots and garlic and continue to cook until the garlic is fragrant. Add the ginger and turmeric, lemon zest and lemon juice, parm rind, and bay leaf. Add the chicken thighs to bottom of the pan and pour the broth over it all. The thighs should be submerged. Add the herbs and salt and pepper and bring to a good simmer. Cook for about 20-25 minutes until the thighs are tender.

Remove the thighs from the broth and shred with two forks. Add the chicken back to the pot then add the couscous. Cook for an additional 8-10 minutes until the couscous or pasta is done. Add the frozen peas and cook until heated through. Taste for seasoning, Top with fresh herbs.
First person to find the parm rind can eat it. It’s delicious.

NOTE:
You may want to add more broth depending on how “soupy” you like your soup. If you don’t have fresh herbs, use dried (which I did a mixture of fresh and dried on this day). You could also add beans instead of couscous, lentils, gnocchi, or quinoa. This will affect your cooking time, however. As a matter of fact, you can see on my instagram reel and maybe can tell in the photos that I used a Harvest Grain blend that I love from Trader Joe’s since there’s pearl couscous in this blend. There’s also quinoa, lentils, orzo. You might call this soup day a fridge purge day (it was).

I hope you make this Chicken Soup. It really is for the soul and when you do, tag me or let me know and let Ambitious Kitchen know too…because she really gets the credit here.

Triadfoodies Favorite Things & Holiday Gift Guide

Happy Ho-Ho-Holidays, foodies. It’s our absolute favorite time of year and we are back once again to share with you so many of our favorite things and drop them all into our annual Holiday Gift Guide of Glorious Deliciousness. I forget how many years we’ve done this, but we are thrilled to be back with our favorites of 2022. We hope this guide inspires you to grab a an item or two for a loved one’s stocking or re-create this guide and be more popular than Santa himself. Everything you see here is available at local markets and of course, online. And we are happy to be giving away this basket to a lucky winner. Keep reading to find out how to win.

sippin SNAX

Our newest discovery! When it comes to noshing, a little snack mix can’t be beat. Have you ever sat at the bar, drink in hand and found yourself munching away at the salty bar snack? Melissa Wallace definitely had her eureka moment when she thought of sippin SNAX, a selection of crunchable goodies that specifically pair with wine, beer, and cocktails. With seasoned pretzels or peanuts for beer and red wine, the choices are quite fun. sippin SNAX, like all of our gift guide items, make great stocking stuffers, but they are the perfect housewarming gift. If you know a realtor, tell them about these treats for their client baskets, or you can be the star of the gift giving when you arrive with your bountiful selection. We highly encourage the sampler pack which can be delivered right to your door. We find ours at Deep Roots Market in Greensboro and sippinsnax.com

Whole Hive Honey

Your breakfast biscuit just leveled up…literally. From up here in the High Country, Whole Hive Honey has enjoyed several years of popularity and if you’re a visitor to the Boone area, you’ll see their honey on many shelves. The Hive recently released “Sweet Heat,” a hot honey that is incredible. Enjoy it on toast or biscuits, but I highly encourage you to add it to homemade dressings and sauces to add the slightest kick. Its side kicks are the maple flavored honey that is spectacular in its own right and great in a glaze for roasted chicken or your holiday ham or on a biscuit with a little sprinkling of salt, and the Better than Butter biscuit honey is a newbie as well. You’ll be reaching for these sweeties again and again. wholehivehoney.com 

Gorilla Grains

My love for the Gorilla runs long and strong. We are rarely without our favorite granola in our home. I’m pretty sure that a long, long time ago, Gorilla Grains was one of our first published “favorite things,” and so he makes his return for 2022. This year’s holiday spice tastes like a Moravian Sugar Spice cookie so we encourage you to seek that out online or in stores like Buie’s Market and the Greensboro Farmers Curb Market, Saxapahaw General Store, or buy online. I am telling you, this granola…it’s righteous…Its crispy, buttery goodness is unforgettable. There is absolutely no other granola like it. gorillagrains.com

Spicewalla Spice Blend Buxton Chicken Rub

If you’ve been to Asheville’s Buxton Hall, you know the flavors of smoking and grilling and Southern goodness abound. If you’ve been to Meherwan Irani’s Chai Pani then you know why it’s a James Beard Award winner. Irani’s spice company, Spicewalla, has created Buxton’s Chicken Rub and let me tell you, you will use it on all the things. Yes, chicken, but also roasted potatoes, veggies, pork chops, steak, next year’s turkey. It is wonderful. You can order Spicewalla online or you can find it in some local stores but do not deny yourself a trip to the spicewallabrand.com where the choices and flavors are seemingly endless. 

Fisher’s Christmas Whiskey

I feel like I’d be remiss if I didn’t add a spirit to our holiday gift guide. Fainting Goat Spirits Christmas whiskey can be a bit hard to find once it’s released. This infusion of cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg and orange peel is bottled in limited quantities at the distillery for a short time. And if by the time you read this, the ship has sailed, let not your heart be troubled. Look for it again next year. It’s best to get on their email list. The winner gets a bottle of this incredibly popular spirit. Check out FaintingGoatSpirits.com for more information or visit the distillery in downtown Greensboro.

Batistini Farms Vanishing Grape Balsamic

From dressings on salad (ahem, toss some pickles in it…ahem) to drizzles on risotto, this white grape balsamic from Clemmons’ Batistini Farms is liquid gold in my house. It is tangy and sweet and will forever have a place in our pantry and in our gift guide. Find it b-farms.com.  

Black Mountain Chocolate Fruit Cake

She’s the living Queen of our Favorite Things. Take her to a party and be the “popular one.” Pair it with some sipping SNAX for a salty sweet treat. Pick up more than one as she freezes great. Enjoy her all season long and find her at Black Mountain Chocolate in Winston-Salem. blackmountainchocolate.com

Now you have your list, no need to check twice. So go out and support local small businesses. We will be giving the entire contents of the holiday gift guide to a lucky winner. Follow YES! Weekly on Facebook leave a comment on the gift guide post about what you’re most excited to try. We will announce the winner on Friday, December 9, and the winner can collect their basket on or after December 14. 

Everything Bagel Mac & Cheese

For our final #sausagesunday collaboration with BFR Meats, it was implored upon my son to make his favorite mac & cheese of all time, Everything Bagel Mac & Cheese. This recipe is inspired by Lindsay of The Hunger Diaries, who came up with this “hack” for her YouTube Channel. There are several meatless Everything Bagel macs on the interwebs and her hack includes sausage to give it that “breakfasty” kick. I had to make a few changes since she uses feta but it’s a close tribute to her recipe and it’s so so good. And I’m absolutely shocked that my son loves this mac so much because he typically refuses to eat anything that’s everything. I mean, has he ever in his little life tried an everything bagel, everything pretzels, everything seasoning? That’s a hard no. Go figure.

BFR Meats has gotten into the pork business lately and I love their pork products, especially this breakfast sausage. It’s not too fatty and has great flavor.

So when the little man said it was the best mac & cheese he’s ever tasted and one of the top 5 meals of his life AND he asked for it for his birthday, well it went down in the history books (after I was wiped up from the floor). If you give this recipe a try be sure to tell me what you think and share it on the socials!

Ingredients: 

1 8oz block cream cheese at room temperature
1 lb pasta (short, spirally like cavatappi and be sure it can handle the stirring)
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp white cheddar
1 cup shredded gruyere (you can also add or sub asiago)
½ cup freshly grated pecorino romano cheese or parmegianno
6 cups whole milk 
1 turn (about 1/4 cup) heavy cream (optional)
6 cloves garlic, minced 
Salt/Pepper 
Drizzle of EVOO 
1 lb. breakfast sausage, crumbled and browned
2-3 tbs. everything but the bagel seasoning

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350-degrees.

Place cream cheese in the center of a large round casserole or a 13-inch baking dish. 

Spread the uncooked pasta and cheeses around the cream cheese, pour milk around the center, add garlic, and salt. Mix it in lightly around the exterior and try to cover the pasta as much as you can but leave the cream cheese in the middle. Add freshly cracked black pepper to the top and drizzle the cream cheese with some olive oil.

 Bake at 350 for 55 min. Give it a good mix about halfway through baking.

Meanwhile in a medium size skillet, crumble and brown up your sausage and set aside.

Once the mac & cheese is bubbly, remove from oven and stir in the sausage. It should be creamy and cheesy. If it’s not quite ready, gritty or needs more creaminess, add some milk and return to the oven for a few more minutes. You can even top with more cheese here if you wish and bake another 20 minutes. If you look closely, my cream cheese did not get entirely creamy but I was running out of time since we were headed to the movies ;).

Before the mix-ins

Top the finished mac with everything bagel chips, everything but the bagel seasoning, and chives or parley for some color (you’ll see I didn’t do that since a certain someone won’t eat it if I add something green). Enjoy!

This mac & cheese reheats well with a little bit of cream to loosen it up and fresh crushed bagel chips on top.

Beef Short Rib Bo Ssam w/ BFR Meats

Slow cook Sundays are our current collaboration for the month of February with our friends at BFR Meats. You can find BFR’s meats including steaks, ground beef, sausages, ribs. pork, jerky. Check them out online and on High Country Food Hub.

My family and I recently enjoyeda beef short rib version of Bo Ssam, traditionally a pulled pork dish served with all kinds of toppings and sides and has been made famous by Momofuko’s David Chang. Ssam, is Korean for “wrap” and butter or bib lettuce is used as a vessel to hold decadent and unctious pork shoulder that’s been cooked for hours and hours. It’s paired with kimchi, toppings and sauces. While we are no strangers in NC to a great fall off the bone pork butt, I wanted to try it with BFR Meats Beef Short Ribs and the result was fantastic. It still takes a few hours so, let’s put your slow cooker to use. Ssam is great fun with family and friends who can choose to wrap or make a plate or bowl. Try out all the flavor combos and just go to town. 

Ingredients
4lbs. beef short ribs
4 cups stock
1/3 cup soy sauce or tamari
1 tbs. turbinado or coconut palm sugar (white sugar will do)
5 tbs. brown sugar
1 tbs. salt

Ssam Accompaniments 
Bib lettuce
Kimchi
Ssam sauce (Momofuko inspired recipe below)
Ginger scallion sauce (Momofuko inspired recipe below)
Carrots, Scallions, Cilantro, Micro greens for toppings (optional)
Rice

Marinade
3 tbs. tamari
3 spring onions, sliced
1 tbs. rice wine vinegar
2 tbs. sesame oil 
4 tbs. Gochujang sauce or sambal oelek
1 inch knob fresh ginger, grated or sliced (you can use jarred)
3 cloves garlic smashed or minced
Salt/Pepper

Directions: 
Generously salt and pepper short ribs. In a bowl mix the marinade and pour over the ribs. Work it in well. Conversely, place ribs in a plastic bag and pour over, giving it a good massage. Let marinate overnight or at least 2 hours. 

When ready to cook, remove ribs and place in your slow cooker. Add the 1/2 cup soy sauce or tamari, 1 tbs. of turbinado or coconut sugar, and stock to just cover the ribs. Cook on low for 8 hours. Check after 6 hours to see if the ribs pull apart from the bones. Once the meat is cooked and very tender, remove from the liquid and then remove the meat from the bones, roughly shred, and place on a foil lined pan. ***Note***At this point, you may choose to remove some of the connective tissue from the meat, as it makes for a more enjoyable and visually appealing eating experience. It’s not entirely necessary but we do it.  It won’t take long if the meat is cooked until tender.  Save and strain the cooking liquid for later. 

Mix the brown sugar and the tbs. of salt in a small bowl. Spread the shredded meat on the pan and sprinkle with the brown sugar and salt mixture. If it looks a little dry, drizzle a bit of the cooking liquid onto the meat. Bake at 500 degrees for 10-15 minutes until the meat is caramelized with some crispy edges. 

Ginger Scallion Sauce inspired by Momofuko
Ingredients: 
1 bunch thinly spring onions, white and green part
splash soy sauce 
1/4 cup freshly minced ginger (I use jarred)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tsp sherry vinegar
salt to taste

While the meat cooks, mix together ingredients for Ginger Scallion Sauce, adjust seasonings to taste. 

Ssam Sauce inspired by Momofuko
Note: Here’s where I had to modify as I don’t have access to the suggested recipe’s ssamjang. 2 tbs. ssamjang or fermented bean &n chili paste. I used 2 tbs. gochujang (found with Asian sauces)
2 tbs. tbs. chili garlic paste or sambal oelek
1/2 cup sherry vinegar
1/2 cup neutral oil

Mix the sauces and vinegar and slowly add oil until desired consistency. Adjust for taste. 

Once the short rib meat is caramelized and the sauces are made, place on a platter and surround it with your ssam sauces and toppings. Serve with rice and have fun making the different combinations. 

This is the meat mixture with kimchi, all the sauces on rice

This is the meat mixture in the bib lettuce “ssam”

Oven method:
Follow the marinade recipe as instructed. Drizzle the bottom of a braiser or dutch oven with oil and place the ribs in a single layer as much as possible.  Add stock, soy/tamari, tbs. of sugar, pop the lid on and cook 300 degrees for 3 hours. Continue with the rest of the recipe above. 

Triadfoodies Chef’s Table Recap: Cille & Scoe

As the sun set on a popular restaurant in downtown Greensboro, a new concept emerged. Forged from a childhood spent with grandparents on an urban farm. a dream was being woven and a little boy learned how to grow his own food each season, harvest it, and prepare it for dinner. That lifelong love and learning of a true farm to table experience has brought to life a restaurant, that calls itself “Southern, redefined.”

Roscoe and Lucille Reaves

Lucille and Roscoe Reaves taught Chef Sean Reaves so much of everything that he knows, that the namesakes and their passion for growing their own food are at the heart of ‘Cille & ‘Scoe, affectionately adopting the nicknames of the two people who’ve impacted him the most.

I usually don’t inundate (haha) a new restaurant with one of our events so soon, but to know Sean and his wife, Tara, is to love them, and I couldn’t wait to show them off a little bit. I strongly encourage you to listen to my podcast as we interviewed this beautiful couple about their life, Sean’s career, their family and this new “baby” they’re nurturing.  Speaking of babies, the Reaves already have two very little “littles” and another one on the way. Yes. They’ve been busy. 

Open for about a month in the location that once was 1618 Downtown, we enjoyed a November Chef’s Table at ‘Cille & ‘Scoe where our sold out “small group” of 25 shared multiple courses family-style. The place was jumping, no question about that and what goodness it was to our eyes to see this early on.  Let’s take a look at the courses, shall we? 

Course One: Charcuterie

Course 2: Shrimp & Grit Cakes

Course 3: 4-Day Chicken (this chicken has been brined, dry rubbed over then coure of 4 days, then roasted)

Course 4: The R & R, Rabbit Ravioli

Course 5:

Beef & Beet (Beef with homemade spaetzle and beet consomme)

It was so nice to meet Sean and Tara and I know our guests enjoyed talking to him toward the conclusion of the evening.

We think ‘Cille & ‘Scoe have a successful road ahead. As many restaurants that are new and young, the Reaves are working out some of those early kinks with execution and getting things to the table quickly. And some dishes are so popular, they’ve sold out of them on some nights. The love affair with local is real and you can see the passion in Sean’s and Tara’s eyes. If you attended our Chef’s Table, we thank you so much for supporting our local chefs. We’ll see you again at the table in the new year!

Wanna go?
‘Cille & ‘Scoe is located at 312 S. Elm Street, Greensboro
336-522-6592
cilleandscoe.com