Dinner, Fall, Holiday, Video, Summer

Dinnergeddon 7

Dinnergeddon, I shall miss you. This was the seventh incarnation and by far our largest gathering. As usual the menu was Paleo friendly: tamarind-citrus chicken, poblano plantains and cilantro-jicama slaw. With the new TechStars teams in attendance we reached full capacity and spilled out onto the patio. Thankfully Boulder held back her Springtime tears and rained down only perfect sunshine and clear skies.

This will be my last dinnergeddon for a while; I’m moving back to New York in a few days. I want to send hearty thanks to Andrew Hyde for letting me cook and bringing me into his fold. Dinnergeddon will always be one of my favorite memories of this past year in Boulder. I am lucky to have met so many people through these parties, and I’ll miss the laughs.

Cheers to all!

Dessert, Dinner, Fall, Holiday

Dinnergeddon, Western Style

First thing Andrew Hyde said to me last night?

“Hold on, I’m shaving a dirty ‘stache.”
And thus began Dinnergeddon 4.

This time the dinner party had a theme, inspired by the anonymous delivery of a life sized John Wayne cutout to Casa Hyde. Andrew requested a Western motif, which was music to my ears. This boy loves a good theme party.

So. Let’s get down to it.

The menu:
Braised Chipotle Chili
Vegetarian Chipotle Bean Chili
Salt and Pepper Cornbread
Raspberry Peach Cobbler

As usual, everything was gluten free and dairy free. Because this is how rockstars eat.

This may have been my favorite Dinnergeddon menu to date. Smokey, meaty, sweet and salty-this food filled all my cravings. By Andrew’s calculations we served 30-35 people, a new record for Dinnergeddon!

Thanks to all who came, conquered and dressed in their western best.

I cannot wait for the next one.

Enjoy some pics of the food being cooked. And some pictures of some special guests. Extra special.


Holiday, Fall, Dinner

Thanksgiving 2009 Part 1


The biggest American gustatory holiday.


So what happens when we take Renegade Kitchen out of Colorado and drop it in New York?

This is what happens.

Now in addition to making everything free of gluten, dairy and processed sugar, this meal had to be prepped between two different kitchens. Yeah. And we’re not talking large, modern, crisp kitchens.

These are New York kitchens.

Small, cramped, old appliances, older smells.

But that’s what makes this a Renegade Thanksgiving, right?

The prep. began in Manhattan, where my parents have a place. I tried to get as much done there as possible, because the final destination (my sister’s apt.) is even smaller in the kitchen. Working in a different kitchen was like wearing someone else’s dress to prom. Everything turned out fine, but “getting dressed” was a trip.

With the prep. list split between two kitchens (one in Brooklyn, one in Manhattan), my sister and I had the Herculean task of synchronizing shopping lists.

Which mostly worked.

And also made for days of two and three trips to Fairway.


Plan of action?

Anything that can be made ahead of time MUST be made ahead of time.

I started with dessert (it should always come first). Our menu planning had determined we’d definitely be needing multiples of everything. 13 people were coming to this feast. With that in mind I knew one tart would never be enough (is it ever?). The Caramelized Apple Tart would be lovely and seasonal and someone was bringing a pumpkin pie, which really just left a gaping hole in the dessert train that could only be plugged with chocolate.

Thinking it would be easiest to double the tart crust recipe and figure out another fruit filling, I set to work.

And this is what happens when you work in a tiny kitchen with ovens made in 1965.

Everything started out perfectly.

And then the crusts went in the oven.

It seems that the oven in my parent’s apartment is fueled by neither electricity nor gas, but rather, the raging fires of Hades. The tart shells burned from raw to ash in about 7 minutes (they normally cook for 15-20).

Obviously there was no way I could serve tart crusts forged in the Inferno, so I started over, scrapping the ash and moving forward with a wary eye on my new friend, the ancient, uncalibrated oven. Next up? Duh. Filling. The apple tart was set, frangipane, caramelized apples, beautiful.

But what to do with the other tart shell?

Obviously it needed chocolate, but what else?

I pretended I’d be seasonal for a hot second and then, after debates with my mother, realized that I wanted little more than chocolate and bananas (dressed up of course, this is a holiday). So, I took my regular frangipane recipe and replaced the almonds with hazelnuts, and added dark chocolate to the mix, blending together a heavenly spread to fill the other tart shell.

I topped the chocolate hazelnut tart with sauteed bananas. It was spectacular. You’ll get the recipe soon enough.

Want to see more? Check back for the next installation of our Thanksgiving Special. I’m hungry now. So I’m turning off the computer and turning on the stove.

I’ll try not to burn anything.