December 16, 2013 by Dana
Ok, so it’s been a couple of
days weeks months since I promised you a recap of the amazing time I had as the NYC Wine and Food Festival. And while I may be a procrastinator, I’m no liar… so today’s the day I deliver! (…part one, anyway.)
But before anything, I have to give a big THANK YOU to ShopRite for sponsoring me at the event! They did such a great job organizing, planning, and setting up great workshops and events for me and the other ShopRite Potluck Bloggers so that we could share our experiences with all of you! (If you’d like to see what the other bloggers had to say about the event, go to the ShopRite Potluck Blog to link to their individual blogs).
Back to business: My experience started out with a Blogger Dinner, which featured an amazing dinner prepared by the lovely Judith Choate. The dinner took place at the De Gustibus Cooking School, which is an awesome venue that is located in Macy’s in Herald Square.
Who knew that there was a cooking school tucked away on the 8th floor? Not me for sure, but anyone interested in cooking should check it out, because over the years so many great chefs have graced the stage there, including huge names such as Julia Child, Mario Batali, Martha Stewart, Tom Colicchio, Emeril Lagasse, and Daniel Boloud, just to name a few!
Judith Choate is an amazing chef, whose experience includes owning her own restaurant and catering business in NYC, developing several cookbooks, and working as a consultant for menu, product, and restaurant development. Her knack for creating amazing menus was clear from the great menu she put together for our dinner.
Amuse: Quinoa Fritters with Yogurt Dipping Sauce
1st Course: Sweet Potato Quinoa Soup
2nd Course: Salad of Heart of Palm and Avocado with Tomato Dressing
Main Course: Pancetta-Wrapped Beef Tenderloin with Chimichurri Sauce and Crispy Potatoes
Dessert: Panettone Trifle with Hazelnut Spread
Every course was seriously DELICIOUS, but my favorite was the Sweet Potato Quinoa Soup. So much so, that I made it the very next day (with enough for leftovers) and Jake and I ate it all week!
And now you can enjoy it, too! Here’s the recipe for you to try while you wait on the edge of your seat for Part 2 of my NYC Wine and Food Festival Recap!
Sweet Potato-‐Quinoa Soup
1 tablespoon olive oil
7oz pancetta, cut into fine cubes (I used 8oz italian turkey sausage instead)
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
6 cups chicken stock
13⁄4 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 jalapeño chili, stemmed, seeded, and minced or to taste 1 cup quinoa, soaked and drained
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups baby spinach leaves
Nonfat yogurt for garnish, optional
Cilantro leaves for garnish, optional
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-‐high heat. Add the pancetta (or turkey sausage removed from casing) and fry, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes or until golden brown. Add the garlic and onion and continue to fry for another 5 minutes or until the onion has sweat its liquid and begun to color.
Stir in the chicken stock along with the sweet potato and chili and bring to a boil. Add the quinoa and again bring to a boil. Season with salt and pepper, lower the heat, and cook at a gentle simmer for about 15 minutes or until the potato and the quinoa are thoroughly cooked.
Add the spinach leaves and stir to combine. Taste and, if necessary, adjust the seasoning.
Ladle into serving bowls and garnish with a spoonful of nonfat yogurt and a few cilantro leaves.