Tag Archives: Sangria

Cilantro for days…

Outside of work stuff, summer is a really busy season for me so I’m always looking for quick and creative food ideas.  Last year I came across a recipe on Pinterest that I really liked.  It looked really easy and seemed flavorful based on the ingredients, but it took forever to find some reasonably priced crabmeat.  I mean the one good thing about living in Baltimore is that crab and oysters are always at your beck and call, but sometimes they get a little pricey.  Anyhoo, fast forward, I made the dish…it was amazing and easy and quick.  I decided it would now be one of my summer staples.

I hope you’re good at following a storyline here, because I’m always all over the place.  Maybe a month or so ago Whole Foods had their “One Day Deal” on jumbo lump crabmeat.  At $15/lb it was a steal and I got like 5 things.  So I made some crab cakes and added some crab to my vodka sauce and then it was 85 degrees and I didnt feel like cutting my stove on.  Re-enter the cilantro lime crab salad recipe.  I got home late, had to mow the lawn and before I knew it, it was 9pm.  I whipped this up in less than 10 minutes.  Check out the recipe:

  • 1/2 cup (8 oz.) lump crab meat
  • 3 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/3 cup red onion, diced finely
  • 1-2 tsp jalapeño, diced finely (optional)
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • Juice from 1/2 a lime
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
  • Dash of cumin
  • 1 avocado, cut in half, pit removed

Here’s where the story changes pace again…I went to the market on Tuesday and they had a sale on cilantro.  2 bunches for $1…another steal!  I swear I bought all the cilantro.  So now I have like 5 more bunches at home and nothing to do with them.  I was sitting at my desk thinking, “I wonder what else I could make with cilantro…” and I came across a recipe for Coconut Shrimp Salad With Spicy Mango & Cilantro Salsa at Food Republic.  Its an oven recipe, but its baked and healthy and has that fresh mango salsa.  Its going to go great with the white sangria I’m making this weekend and you guys got a twofer today.  Have a great weekend!

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Just call me Sangria San Juan

That kinda sounds like a strippers name, and although it was hot and muggy enough to make you want to strip when we arrived in Puerto Rico, I can assure you that I had on more clothes than Rihanna wore in her last three concerts combined.  The past few weeks leading up to the trip, I did nothing but research restaurants and dream up fictious Puerto Rican food concoctions.  While I had things that I definitely wanted to try, I came across several things that I hadn’t even thought about…hadn’t even imagined.  I figured this post would be a good follow up to Lindsey’s “Thirsty Thursdays”.  We’ll call this Sweet Sippin’ Saturdays!

Upon arriving at La Concha and looking around a bit, we were eager to get out and do some sightseeing.  Unfortunately, we weren’t visiting during the dry season and were caught in the middle of a 45 minute torrential downpour.  So we decided to eat at one of the restaurants at the hotel…this was our “go to” for the remainder of the trip.  We were greeted by a very attentive and gracious staff and they were willing to suggest or caution against certain items on the menu.  …Too bad Amanda kept getting that tough a** chicken sandwich!

Anyhow, our waiter David (pronounced Dah-veed) was enthusiastic in his recommendation the Chambord Sangria.  And while I’m no red wine connoisseur, I said what the hell and went for it…went for it so much that I ended up spending $60 on a pitcher.  La Chambord SangriaThis was a novel idea!  Why had I not heard of this in the US before???  It only makes sense to add a fruit based liqueur to a fruit based drink.  Pineapple was not only used as a garnish but it was soaked with Chambord, which made for a delish snack while drinking.  The raspberry sweetness added to the somewhat muted flavor of the wine.  You got all of the Chambord, but on the back end, you could taste the wine and the fruit.  IM HOOKED!  This became our staple drink for the duration of the trip…for meals…poolside…and in place of water when we needed hydration.

I then proceeded to dive into several pitchers in hopes to figure out the ratio of ingredients.  I think I may have it, but I’m gonna throw a curveball by using white wine as a base instead.  After driving around Baltimore for forever and realizing no one sells a normal sized bottle of Chambord, I was ready to get this sangria crackin’!  The mini bottle actually worked perfect for this.  Find the recipe below…it makes one pitcher (but keep in mind to make this at least one, but no more than 5 days in advance if you’re adding fruit):The ingredients

ͽ  2 bottles of Spanish white wine (it can be inexpensive, you’ll be sweetening this later)

ͽ  1/5 of a fifth of Brandy

ͽ  ½ cup of orange liqueur (I like to use a Spanish one, Torres, but Grand Marnier works just fine)

ͽ  375ml Chambord

ͽ  1 c of orange juice, sans pulp!

ͽ  1 apple sliced very thin (you can add or substitute any light fruit…peaches, white grapes and pineapple work well)

ͽ  simple syrup, to taste (to make, boil equal parts sugar and water and let cool first)

Let it marinate!

Mix well and let sit overnight, at least.

PS:  Also, this recipe does produce a slightly strong (not a watered down restaurant) version, so all ingredients can be adjusted to suite your personal taste.  Gypsy says, bottoms up!


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