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Monday, November 18, 2013

Sweet Corn and Smokey Bacon Chowder

This past week I made a large batch of sweet and smokey corn chowder, perfect for a cozy night in. I found the recipe online from the Barefoot Contessa's collection on the Food Network. I followed the recipe loosely, adding my own personal touch. For example, instead of using baking potatoes I choose to use the healthier sweet potato as a substitute. Instead of sprinkling bacon bits on top of the soup, I combined the bacon into the soup. I used smokey bacon ends from Trader Joe's to add a deep smokey flavor to pair with my sweet corn and potatoes. Lastly, I added carrots to the recipe for an extra element of texture and flavor. This soup is rich and elegant, you could easily serve the soup as a main dish with an accompanied salad and/or french bread. Don't forget to freeze any leftover soup for future enjoyment! 

Check out the Barefood Contessa's recipe by clicking on the link below:

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Chimborazo Restaurant

On Monday, I had the pleasure of dining at Chimborazo, an Ecuadorian restaurant on 28th and Central in Northeast Minneapolis. The restaurant is small and quaint with a handful of tables, colorful walls, and a pea-sized kitchen. It was clear to me after eating at Chimborazo that chef and owner, Marcos Pinguil prepares each dish to order with fresh, homemade ingredients. The cuisine is authentically Ecuadorian and features many traditional ingredients such as hominy, potatoes, and plantains. The atmosphere is casual and cheery, a perfect lunch spot. For lunch, my group shared the Churrasco with chicken, Enconcado with shrimp and Llapingachos con chorizo. My favorite dish was by far the Enconcado, shrimp stewed in a fragrant coconut sauce. The sauce is rich and sweet, almost like a curry cream. Plates are garnished with fresh, acidic red onion salads to cut the heaviness of most dishes. On the side, they serve a green sauce which is a fantastic condiment to most everything we ate. The sauce is made by blending cilantro, garlic and olive oil. The chorizo and potato pancake dish (llapingachos) was also very tasty. The chorizo was flavorful yet not overly spicy. The pancakes were fluffy and moist, packed with cheese inside. Another great sauce which accompanied the chorizo was a rich peanut sauce not to be missed. Lastly, the chicken and bean dish (churrasco) was just OK. The chicken was a tad bland, yet I enjoyed the beans and plantains served on the side. I would highly recommend this tiny gem! Prices are low and food is worth the drive out to Northeast ;)

Check out their recipe by clicking HERE