Queen Bee Eats for a Day

baby girl’s ice lolly July 12, 2010

Filed under: Food Adventures,Ice Cream — haleyhoneybee @ 12:12 am
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Frozen fruit or ice cream pops have been all the rage this summer, and for good reason. There is something so quintessentially summer about licking that frozen bar of goodness… and best of all, its on a stick. Frozen ice pops, better known as popsicles are enjoyed around the world. Actually, Popsicle is a brand name for this type of frozen ice dessert, and the most popular type of such. I think I am a fan of the UK pseudonym… ice lolly – like an ice cream lollipop. That is what it is in deed.

While visiting home (Florida) this summer we stopped into a new little gourmet popsicle shop in St. Augustine. They offered a variety of popsicles in delicious fruit flavors. I couldn’t think of a better moment for a popsicle, either. Hot summer day; sticky with humidity. There was a nice selection, so we chose banilla vanana (banana vanilla), strawberries n’ creme, and key lime. The were all yummy – the key lime tasted just like a slice of key lime pie. (Which by the way you can also get frozen and on a stick in Key West, but that is another story for another day).

We all enjoyed, but by far the youngest member of our party was most delighted. First a hesitant lick… then chomp!

We decided to take the memory home with us. Here’s how we made our baby girl’s simple banana popsicles: 1 cup whole milk vanilla yogurt and three ripe bananas. Combine and blend. Pour/scoop into molds and freeze overnight. Best enjoyed outside in the sun.

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Independently Simple July 7, 2010

Filed under: Cooking Adventures,Drinks,Recipes & How-Tos — queenbeeeatsforaday @ 5:00 am
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Over the years I’ve seen plenty of recipes for homemade beverages and yummy cocktails that have called for simple syrup that’s I’ve simply avoided because I was afraid. Afraid of the simplicity of it, I suppose. Until now…until the 4th of July!

Independence Day 2010 included not only fireworks and simple syrup but plans with some Brooklyn-based friends who love good food, good times, and good drinks. They were doing the fantastic menu (corn salad, potatoes, tomato & mozzarella, coffee rubbed steak, and brownies for dessert) so we offered to bring the cocktails. Then I got to thinking, what’s the best outdoor, summery drink for the 4th of July?

Mojitos. Of course!

It was the perfect solution. They’re cool, refreshing, fruity, and sweet. They go down easy. And some recipes require simple syrup so I bit the bullet, pulled out my saucepans, sugar, and water.

I’m going to tell you a secret. They don’t call it “simple syrup” for nothing.

Here’s what you need – 1 part sugar, 1 part water, a stove, and a pot. That’s it!

Here’s what you do – Put the water and sugar into the saucepan and bring it to a boil. You can stir it once or twice, but just keep an eye on it until the sugar is completely dissolved.  Then, remove it from the heat, let it cool, and refrigerate for later use.

Here’s a hint or two – You know you’re on the right track as the liquid in the saucepan thickens and drips off your spoon or whisk in a stream. If it acts like syrup you’ve done good! For sweeter syrup, you can do 1 part water, 2 parts sugar. Oh, and simple syrup usually stays good for about a month in the fridge.

You can flavor the syrup with a couple of pieces of peeled ginger, lemon zest, or just about anything else to give it an extra kick.

That’s it. Super simple. Simple syrup.

Keep your eyes out for the upcoming post, Mojito Madness, to get your drink on.

 

This ones’s for you, Cupcake July 2, 2010

Filed under: Cakes — haleyhoneybee @ 1:00 am
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Mama B. can’t eat wheat, actually she can’t eat any gluten. It happens… and as a creative cook (well really just of eggs, doctored Amy’s Pizza, chopped liver, and a mean GF banana bread) and restaurant go-er she has grown to find more and more options to satisfy her taste buds. But some things you just miss. Case in point: a cupcake at the beach.
I first realized that the most delicious location for a moist cupcake was seaside while visiting our besties some years ago in St. Augustine, Florida.

The other day my hubby and I went to our local Sprinkles cupcake shop and noticed something new and inclusive to all. They now carry the popular red velvet cupcake in both vegan and gluten free options. (now I must pause for a moment and add that I am really a fan of Sprinkles and I know many people have varying preferences… I have tried Magnolia in NYC, Crumbs in Beverly Hills, Suzie Cakes in Costa Mesa, Luli’s in St. Augustine just to name a few. And I am really a fan of Sprinkles, not too much frosting and a moist delicious cupcake. But that does not mean that I am not in favor of the others, I just really happen to enjoy a Sprinkles cupcake, hype and all.)

So we did a taste test comparison of both the GF and regular red velvet. And although the GF had a ever so slightly different aftertaste (of maybe…mmm…garbanzo bean flour), it was a nearly perfect match. And for someone that hasn’t had a red velvet cup cake in years, it would be a piece of heaven. And so… when Mama B. was visiting last, we swung by Sprinkles, grabbed a few cupcakes and head to Crystal Cove for a hike down the cliff to sit by the tide pools.

This one’s for you, Cupcake…the pictures surely show how much she enjoyed!

 

Mermaids, Bees, and Nachos June 28, 2010

Filed under: Food Adventures,Restaurants — queenbeeeatsforaday @ 4:00 am
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Bumblebee Ride at Coney Island

What a strange title for a post, right?  But that’s exactly what we experienced last weekend!

June 19th marked the annual Mermaid Parade at Coney Island, which is an experience to say the least.  Sand, surf, sun, mermaids, and everything else in between!  The parade includes anyone who wants to participate – little girls’ birthday parties, groups making a statement (think “boycott BP” for this year), mermaids-at-heart.  It’s Coney Island at its best.

If you haven’t been to Coney Island, let me describe it to you. Imagine a carnival, sideshow, boardwalk, amusement park, and beach all mixed into one.  It can be fantastic or a little too much, depending on your mood.  It is also very loud.  Coney Island is home to the infamous Cyclone (a rollercoaster that’s been there since 1927) and Nathan’s Famous (origin – 1916) hot dogs.

The idea of a hot dog, a quintessential New York snack, was much more appealing to us than the Cyclone, but that’s just me.

After an hour on the train with some crazies dressed as pirates (did I not mention that pirates are also common to the parade?) We arrived in time to see the last half of the parade and then eagerly headed over to the site of Nathan’s, right off the boardwalk, along Surf Avenue.  Then we saw the line…maybe 150 people long.  It was hot and we were hungry, so we decided to save Nathan’s for another post which brings us to the nachos…

San Loco Ballpark Nachos

We still wanted something to eat that fit in with the theme of the day – fun, campy, not-entirely-healthy – so we stopped off at San Loco in the Lower East Side.  San Loco’s self-proclaimed Gringo-Mex menu is great!  Ordered a

couple of taco locos, Pacificos, and the star of the show – a small order ($2.60) of the Ballpark Nachos, complete with tortilla chips, squeezee cheezee nachco cheese sauce, sour cream, fresh jalapenos, taco sauce, and ground beef.   Totally bad but oh-so-good.  Yummm.

End of the Mermaid Parade 2010

It was the perfect punctuation to a day spent in the summer sun, mish-mashing with mermaids, pirates, and rollercoasters.   We’ll be heading back to Nathan’s on a less crowded day.

 

Tweet Tweet Twitter June 27, 2010

Filed under: Welcome — queenbeeeatsforaday @ 1:47 pm
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Do you hear tweeting?  Are you twittering?

Yes, that’s right, we’re now on Twitter!

Go ahead and follow us and join in the fun.  You can find us at http://twitter.com/queenbeeeats or @queenbeeeats.  You can also click the Twitter button in our sidebar.

Happy eating!

QB

 

The Cutest Ice Cream Shop Ad EVER! June 23, 2010

As I wait for our “official” blog photographer to send pictures over for what was scheduled as the next post (keep your eyes peeled for “Mermaids, Bees, and Nachos”) I came across this advertisement.  And since it also happens to be the cutest ice cream shop ad EVER, we had to share it.  Check it out:

After watching this absolutely brilliant ad, I had to find out more about this Lake Street Creamery.  The first thing I noticed on their site was that they

“don’t just sell ice cream. [They] are dedicated artisans bringing you unique flavors in ice creams, gelatos, sorbets and the floats made thereof.”

They also claim their ice cream will turn you into a god.  Mmmmm!  I love everything about it so far.

From the looks of their menu they’ve got innovative and exciting flavors like Donut, Earl Grey, and California Zephyr (Tahitian vanilla, Meyer lemon, and fresh mint!)  With fresh ingredients and small batches changing everyday, I can’t wait to try them!  And with reasonable prices (about $4 for a scoop), there’s no reason not to.

Aside from their smart marketing and fun campy content on their site, they are in Los Angeles!  Which means that our other resident bee can check them out immediately (or wait for me to get there in August – which I might add would be the bee-utiful thing to do…)

Oh, and I should probably mention that this isn’t really an ice cream parlor in the traditional sense of the word.  Lake Street Creamery is a mobile unit that posts their daily locations via Twitter and their site and can apparently be booked for special events.  How fun!

We will let you know when we’ve tried this.  In the meantime, has anyone had the experience of cute kittens and Lake Street Creamery?

 

Thai Toddy June 19, 2010

Filed under: Coffee — haleyhoneybee @ 12:23 am
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The concept: The Cold brew or Toddy Style said to be the best way to make iced coffee. This style makes a less acidic and bitter version of brewing coffee. Interestingly, it was developed by a chemical engineering student at Cornell University.

The chemistry:  Coffee contains many fatty acids and certain oils which are only soluble at a high temperature, this is what gives coffee its characteristic bitter or acidic ‘bite’. Because you aren’t exposing the beans to high temperature these fatty acids and oils are not released. Cold brewing is approximately 67% less acidic than hot brewing methods.

picture taken before I went to sleep

The technique: Cold brew process (Toddy Style)

  • 13 hours before you want drink the coffee
  • coarsely grind coffee beans, letting the ground coffee bloom (or sit) for 1 hr
  • place grinds into french press (this process is usually on the strong side, but you dilute it later)
  • for more flavor you can add a pinch each of cardamom and cinnamon, and a piece orange rind, if you want
  • fill with cold water, pouring a circular motion will help get all grinds get wet
  • don’t stir, but you may nee to tap the grinds to make sure they ‘re all wet
  • leave plunger up, letting the coffee grinds sit in the water overnight

The cool thing with cold brewing is that the coffee stays good for a up to two weeks when stored on the fridge, so you could use your biggest size french press. If storing, you’ll want to transfer the coffee concentrate into another container and discard the ground coffee. You can use this for feeding you garden, acidic loving plants adore coffee.

picture taken the next morning

The variations:

  • For iced coffee drink: 1 part coffee to 3 parts water milk or cream
  • For thai coffee : add one tablespoon of sweetened condensed milk for each 8 oz. of iced coffee
  • This process can also be followed for making iced tea.

the final press