Posts Tagged ‘Trader Joe’s’

5779!

Tuesday, September 11th, 2018

ChezHelvetica celebrated Rosh Hashanah with joy and excitement for the New Year, surrounded by treasured gifts and love from family and friends. Hand-painted Jewish Star candlesticks from sister Abby and Rosenthal China with Georg Jensen Cactus Sterling Silver from my parents adorned the table. With a nod to traditional holiday foods, this evening’s menu circled the globe presenting delicious gourmet dishes. Our first course included Noe Valley Bakery Challah and Fuji and Honeycrisp Apples with O Organics Honey along House of Bagels Lox nested in Basil leaves with Campari Tomatoes and Trader Joe’s Greek Medley Olives, served with luscious HOB Cream Cheese. Incredible Matzo Ball Soup made by my dear friend Joan was a kaleidoscope of orange, yellow and purple Carrots, Rutabaga and Ginger. Our main course featured a triptych of Middle Eastern entrées: Cinnamon-scented TJ’s Israeli Couscous (made with Pine Nuts, Shallots and Raisins), Honey Dijon Garlic Chicken Breasts and Eggplant with Tomatoes, topped by Pomegranate Seeds. Jewish legend professes Pomegranates are symbols of righteousness with the seeds holding luck and wisdom. Viñas Chilenas Rosario Estate Reserva Merlot added even more happiness to the occasion. The wonderful desserts for this sweet holiday were Rugelach and Fruit Tarts. L’Shanah Tova! A good year to all!

            

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A Family Tapestry

Tuesday, August 14th, 2018

ChezHelvetica wove interlacing culinary patterns into a warm hug for visiting family. Grilled White Peaches from the VA Farmers Market with choice of (Brown Sugar & Cinnamon, Maple Syrup or Haagen Dazs Carmel Cone Ice Cream) toppings was Friday night’s arrival dessert. Saturday’s dinner Soiree’ delighted guests as fresh Pine Nut Pesto doused frilly ‘Gigli’ Pasta, accompanied by grilled Zucchini and Aidell’s Italian Style Chicken Sausage, warm Baguette and Greek Olive Medley. La Crema Chardonnay from Sonoma’s North Coast added bright Citrus, Apricot and Honeydew scents. Finally, Trader Joe’s Crispy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies completed the heartwarming meal. A classic Sunday Brunch featuring Lox and ‘Everything’ Bagels from the House of Bagels, Deviled Eggs, Early Girl Tomatoes and Red Onion ended this reunion with Big Dreams for the next!

          

 

 

 

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The Meyer Lemon Curd Solution

Friday, July 20th, 2018

ChezHelvetica’s birthday tribute to a Father who loved Lemon Meringue Pie turned out to be homemade Lemon Curd, thanks to a gift of beautiful, fragrant Meyer Lemons picked in Tamalpais Valley and the perfect easy recipe (with video!) from Ina Garten. Dollops of the curd frosted Trader Joe’s Crispy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies for dessert on The Day. Then the sweet, tangy Meyer Lemon curd transformed a breakfast of Open Nature Maple Pecan Granola, Fage Yogurt and Organic Blueberries the next morning. It’s all about zest, be it the deep love for a wonderful Dad or a meal with delicious Lemon Curd!

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From OSU to SFO

Saturday, December 2nd, 2017

ChezHelvetica regaled a dear friend from college with a Welcome Dinner amidst hugs, kisses and conversation that picked up where we left off years earlier. Our first course: Heartwarming Broccoli Cauliflower Soup accented with freshly picked Oregano, Thyme, Basil and Sage, plus a kick of Cayenne, accompanied by Delallo Jumbo Kalamata Olives and Pepperidge Farm Goldfish. Then the fest! Mouthwatering Crab Cakes composed of Dungeness Crab (one from the Seafood Center in San Francisco and another from Bolinas) and delicious Boudin Sourdough Bread, served on inner leaves of Romaine and dressed with Lemon Vinaigrette, along with Sweet Potato Fries. Jordan Russian River Chardonnay was the perfect pairing, both because of its creamy taste and its name, that of Nina’s son. For dessert we delighted in Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter Ice Cream and World’s Finest Chocolate Mint Meltaways while discussing next days plans to see Gustav Klimt at the Legion, Teotihuacan at the deYoung and hear U.K. band Stereophonics at The Fillmore and Seal at Davies Symphony HallExcitement reigned!

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When Winter Is Summer

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

Spanish TortillaThe duplicity of the season for ChezHelvetica inspires dishes made with relative ease and some warmth, a nod to lazier days and the ever-present chilling fog. Crunchy Celery and Chickpea Salad and creamy Corn Chowder (both recipes from The New York Times) fulfilled these needs. With fresh produce from the VA Farmers’ Market and Trader Joe’s, jewel-like Yellow and White Corn Kernels, Red Pearl Tomatoes, Green Celery and Italian Parsley decorated the kitchen like confetti. Yukon Gold Potatoes and Green Onions sautéed in Extra Virgin Olive Oil, combined with Organic Eggs, created a delicious, sizzling Spanish Tortilla. Then, Marqués de Cáceres, a velvety smooth Rosé from Spain’s famed Rioja region, delivered that extra excitement! 

 

Corn chowder   ChickpeaCelerySalad

 

 

 

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Until ~~~

Monday, May 23rd, 2016

FrittataUntil softened, until the tomatoes burst, until the eggs just begin to set, until the guests arrive … Welcome to ChezHelvetica’s Spring Vegetable Frittata dinner. Beautiful pencil-thin Asparagus spears, gloriousFrittataSlice Broccoli florets and jewel-like, multi-colored Cherry Tomatoes (from the VA Farmers Market) starred in this delicious Frittata, seasoned with Kosher Salt and Pepper, followed by a sprinkling of velvety Goat Cheese. Watercress, dressed with Sherry Vinegar (made from Balsamic Vinegar and Sherry) and Extra Virgin Olive Oil, freshly baked Trader Joe’s Ciabatta and Kalamata Olives completed the savory course. The sweetest, ruby-red Strawberries á la Mode then crowned this fun evening. Until we meet again ~~~

FrittataTable

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Fare Trade

Wednesday, April 6th, 2016

CobbNanci Q. How to thank a dear friend for an exquisite painting? A. work of art for a work of art – fare trade! While ChezHelvetica’s centerpiece Cobb Salad doesn’t match the effort taken to create the beautiful canvas, the overture was heartfelt. Robert Cobb’s classic Brown Derby recipe received a new coat of culinary paint with the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market‘s freshly-picked Romaine Hearts, Curly Endive, Rotisserie Chicken and award-winning Point Reyes Farmstead Blue Cheese. Safeway‘s Farmer John thick-sliced Bacon, Open Nature Cage-Free Eggs, Kalamata Olives, and Trader Joe’s Avocado and Pearl Tomatoes completed the platter – all dressed in Stonehouse Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Balsamic Vinegar, Dijon Mustard and a touch of Organic Cane Sugar. (Sadly, I found the perfect Chives purchased to garnish the Salad untouched in the refrigerator the next day…) Wild Mountain Raw Honey showered Medina Farms Blackberries, Strawberries and Tory Farms Oranges, also sweetening Mighty Leaf Ginger Tea, as confidantes shared exciting secrets in the new chapters of their lives!NanciPainting2

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Monet Meets Cava V

Tuesday, January 26th, 2016

CaveCupcakesChezHelvetica shared stories, pictures and the amazing flavors experienced Down Under with a group of very creative, special friends (the exclusive members of Cava V). With inspiration from meals at Middle Eastern Maha Halloumi SaladRestaurant in Melbourne and the Amora Jamison Hotel in Sydney, a Grilled Halloumi and Eggplant Arugula Salad opened the celebration. Halloumi is a traditional cheese from Cyprus, and when grilled, has a sensational savory taste. Yotam Ottlenghi’s Burnt Eggplant, Wild Rocket Arugula and Pomegranate Lemon Dressing completed the dish, accompanied by Pita, Flatbread and Kalamata Olives. Velvety Marqués de Cáceres Rosé from Rioja accompanied this course, soon followed by delicious Gloria Ferrer Sonoma Brut to pair with Dungeness Crab Cakes and Sweet Chili Sauce, a recipe learned at The Culinary Arts Center aboard the Noordam. Washington state Crab Meat mixed with Celery, Onion, Chives, Lemon, Egg, Worcestershire and Tobasco Sauces, Garlic, Thyme and Panko Bread CrumbsCavaCrabcakes bathed in a luscious Sauce comprised of Butter, Cream, Sherry (instead of Sake), Lime Juice, Ginger and Sweet Chili Sauce. Then the art project sparked by Mini-Monet Cupcakes seen at The Flats in Sydney . . . ChezHelvetica’s Chocolate Ganache and Vanilla Bean Mini Cupcakes decorated like colorful fireworks by the Cava V with assorted frostings, sprinkles and toppings. Simply Spectacular!

Cava5table

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Joy, Sorrow, Champagne and Tea

Sunday, January 10th, 2016

Champagne TeaBeachwood High School > The Ohio State University > California Bay Area. Longtime friends with intersecting life journeys shared laughter and tears at ChezHelvetica’s Champagne Tea as very private stories were revealed. Scottish Smoked Salmon with Green Onion Cream Cheese on Everything Bagels, drizzled with Honey and Truffle Oil, brought both comfort and delight. The juxtaposing flavors of Deviled Eggs, Blue Stilton, Brie, Blueberries and Tangerines delivered even more happiness, as did those sips of bubbly, golden Champagne and Darjeeling Tea. Special friends reset your compass to New Horizons!CT Flowers

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Strata

Saturday, October 24th, 2015

MichaelStrataFor some Strata defines a level or class, at ChezHelvetica this means a delicious breakfast. Behold Apple French Toast Strata. The evening before serving, preparation for this French toast bake was almost done with the exception of the Sliced Almonds added just before going into the oven. Sautéed Trader Joe’s Organic Honey Crisp Apples andMichaelBreakfast Safeway’s 15-Grain Whole Wheat Bread soaked in Eggs, Milk and Half & Half, then scented by fragrant Spice Ace Organic Ground Nutmeg, Vietnamese Cinnamon and Sonoma Syrup Co’s Madagascar Bourbon Organic Vanilla Extract. Imagine the aroma when baking in the morning along with freshly brewed coffee. Juicy Strawberries and Blackberries from the VA Farmers Market and Dark Amber Maple Syrup from Quebec’s Beauce-Appalache region sent this down-to-earth meal straight into the Stratosphere . . .

MichaelFruit      MichaelSlice      MichaelCenter

 

 

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