Monthly Archives: February 2010

FOOD - "The Delicious" - Homemade - Italian - Recipes

Chicken gorgonzola pasta with pine nuts

February 22, 2010

My mom will be so proud.

One of my New Years’ resolutions was to make more time for cooking. The other day, I was at the grocery store and didn’t have a recipe for dinner. I was famished and wanted to start off with something that wouldn’t take too much time to figure out. I remembered that I had downloaded a free Epicurious recipe app on my iPhone and browsed through. I came across a recipe for Pasta with chicken, sun-dried tomatoes, gorgonzola and pine nuts. With minor substitutions, here were the results!

I think it turned out pretty good. Gorgonzola is a strong cheese, and not everyone might be fans of it. I’m a cheese lover though, and the sun dried tomato addition made it taste really tangy.

Here’s the recipe (with my substitutions in brackets):

Pasta with Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Gorgonzola and Pine Nuts

* 1/ 2 cup chopped drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes (2 tablespoons oil reserved)
* 2 skinless boneless chicken breast halves (about 9 ounces total)
* 1 pound gnocchi pasta or medium shell pasta [I wish I could find gnocchi pasta at the grocery store! I settled for bow tie pasta]
* 4 garlic cloves, minced [I thought I had garlic at home but didn’t, so I used ground garlic instead]
* 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
* 1/2 cup canned low-salt chicken broth
* 1/2 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese (about 2 ounces)
* 1/4 cup chopped prosciutto [I didn’t use prosciutto!]
* 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted


Heat 1 tablespoon oil reserved from tomatoes in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to skillet and sauté until cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to plate and cool; do not clean skillet. Cut chicken into 1/2-inch pieces.

Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain pasta; transfer to large bowl.

Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 tablespoon tomato oil in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic; sauté until tender, about 1 minute. Add sun-dried tomatoes, chicken, basil, broth, cheese and prosciutto to skillet and bring to boil.

Add sauce to pasta and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Top with pine nuts and serve. The recipe says it serves 4, but I think it’s more like 2-3.

Have you tried a new recipe recently? Let me know your thoughts!


Beauty - "The Lovely" - Beauty on the Streets

Beauty on the Streets: Archana Ram

Archana Ram

Name: Archana Ram

Age: 24

Occupation: Magazine Journalist

Location: New York City

Website: (my blog about flexitarian eats)

“I was born in Queens, grew up in New Jersey, went to school in Chicago, spent 6 months in Australia and currently live in NYC. I believe that one can never wear too many sequins, do enough traveling or eat too much pizza.”

My favorite designer right now is: Basil Soda and Matthew Williamson

People usually compliment my: eyeliner

My favorite makeup tip: Use sunscreen!

Current beauty product obsession: is Ojon Rub-Out Dry Cleanser. No white residue and it smells great. A co-worker actually thought it was a new perfume I was wearing!

But I also can’t live without: Wet ‘n’ Wild Liquid Eyeliner. The expensive stuff doesn’t glide as smoothly as WW’s liquid liner. Three dollars (plus some change)? Amazing!

My favorite scent right now is: I don’t like perfume much because most are too strong for me, but I like Fresh Eau de Parfum in Mangosteen from time to time. I also like this jasmine-scented roll-on perfume that I picked up at Enfleurage, an aromatherapy boutique in the West Village.

I love wearing my hair: My hair is naturally curly but the curls are just not feeling New York. I think they miss Chicago. With that in mind, I like to blow out my hair, which, as long as I’ve gotten a recent trimming, is styled with long layers and side swept bangs. But I also keep nice headbands for lazy hair days, which occur quite often. I must admit, though, while I’m waiting for my hair to grow really long (Kim Kardashian style), I sometimes miss my Victoria Beckham-inspired bob from a few years ago.

My favorite hair product for my hair is: Heat protectant. Check yourself before you wreck yourself (and your hair)!

I don’t understand people who don’t like: Pizza. Bread and cheese – what’s not to like?

The restaurants I can never get tired of are: Too many to list! Singha’s Pizza with bell peppers, onions and mushrooms (no other pizza place puts that many veggies), Ess-a-Bagel’s sesame bagel (that dough is magical) and banana walnut pancakes at Clinton St. Baking Company (the pancakes are fluffy and their maple butter is to die for).

Though I can make a mean: Not-your-average veggie sandwich

For my skin: I’m a stickler about good skin care so here goes: I wash with Clearasil Cleanser,moisturize with an SPF moisturizer (like Murad’s Energizing Pomegranate Moisturizer with SPF 15) in the morning and Clinique’s Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion at night, and whatever eye cream I can get my hands on. I scrub my face 2-3 times a week with Ole Henriksen Walnut Complexion Scrub or even something as thrifty as St. Ives Elements Olive Scrub. And once every 1-2 weeks, I’ll apply a gentle face mask from Kiehl’s or L’Occitane.

People might be surprised to know: that I’m a huge sleep talker. Sometimes I even scream.

Who inspires me: World travelers

If you would like to be featured for an upcoming profile, please email with “Beauty on the Streets” in the subject line.

BATF Giveaways

PS! Smoky Eye Kit update

I have one giveaway winner who has not claimed her prize for the Smoky Eye Kit Giveaway, so just wanted to make sure my mail isn’t going straight to spam!

Would Desi please email me at ASAP to claim her prize by the end of the day?

Will be announcing the new winner soon if I don’t hear anything soon.


Dessert - FOOD - "The Delicious" - French

More reasons to go to the Creperie

I love the Creperie‘s sweet crepes, but their savory ones are fantastic too. I’ve mentioned a long time ago how this one goat cheese/sun dried tomatoes combo rocked my world. So I went back to the LES for more…because that’s what I do?

Savory crepe, goat cheese and sun dried tomatoes

Savory crepe, goat cheese and sun dried tomatoes $8

Afterwards, I got the Chocolate Lover’s Crepe ($10), which has chocolate brownie chunks with banana, ice cream, and whipped cream. It also normally comes with chocolate fudge, but I substituted with Nutella, because Nutella is the best thing ever in life.

Chocolate Lovers Crepe, $10

Chocolate Lovers Crepe, $10

Try either, and I think you’ll find it hard to be disappointed.

Restaurant Info:

135 Ludlow St.
btw Rivington and Stanton St.
New York, NY 10002


Bakery - Dessert - FOOD - "The Delicious"

Hot Chocolate Festival at the City Bakery

February 19, 2010

The City Bakery near Union Square is celebrating Chocolate month (you did know it was National Chocolate month, right?) all February through their Hot Chocolate Festival.

Chocolate Chip cookies

The City Bakery

Basically, every day, they have a different special hot chocolate they’re featuring. On their website,, you can check out what the hot chocolate of the day is each day for the whole month! I FINALLY went yesterday to check it out. The hot chocolate of the day: Darkest Dark Chocolate Hot Chocolate.

Darkest Hot Chocolate Dark Chocolate

It totally lived up to its name. It was rich, and thick, and really good. But again, so rich I could only down a fourth of a cup. It probably didn’t help that I ate it with the most delicious chocolate chip cookies ever — I mean the kind that tastes fresh out of the over, home baked sugary taste, with melted chocolate chips. Mmm.

You have 10 days left to try their hot chocolate of the day! There’s still some good ones coming up, including “Ode to the Polar Bear Hot Chocolate” on the 24th and “Shangri-La Hot Chocolate” on the 26th.

Oh, and call me if you go.

Restaurant Info:
The City Bakery

3 W 18th St.
Btwn 5th and 6th Ave
New York NY 10011
Union Square


Beauty - "The Lovely" - Nails

Blackberry Bling

This made me laugh.

Fellow beauty writer, Andrea Arterbery, explained to me that the reason she painted all her nails black except for the thumbs (which she chose a metallic silver for) was because that’s her ‘blackberry bling.’ Had to take a pic with my phone:

While she’s clicking away on her blackberry, her silver thumbs stand out.

Just had to share. What you think?