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Recipe: Ashley Christensen’s Pimento Cheese

Recipe: Ashley Christensen’s Pimento Cheese

Posted by on Jun 21, 2017 in Eat | 0 comments

Blog originally posted on visitRaleigh.com. Since the opening of Poole’s Diner in 2007, Raleigh, N.C., passionate mind and James Beard Award-winning chef Ashley Christensen has transformed the restaurant scene in the City of Oaks. Christensen released her first cookbook in Sept. 2016, Poole’s: Recipes and Stories from a Modern Diner. Full of beautiful photography, inspiring messages and secrets to delicious meals, Christensen’s cookbook tells the story of the downtown diner that tugs on the heartstrings of many folks in the capital city. We’ve published a quintessential Southern recipe and its story from the book below: Ashley’s pimento cheese! You can purchase a signed copy of the book here or at retailers like Amazon, Barnes & Noble and more. Story Behind the Recipe “In the South, pimento cheese is a little bit like barbecue: everyone swears theirs is the best. But pimento cheese didn’t originate in the South; it has roots in the industrial food revolution in New York. Sometime around the 1950s, Southerners claimed it, giving pimento cheese its now-permanent residence below the Mason-Dixon Line. The Poole’s version of pimento cheese is based on the recipe of my “grand-godmother”—my godmother’s mother, Marge France. Marge was the wife of Forest “Bud” France, a decorated army lieutenant colonel and a train master for the B&O Railroad (he was the one who kept the trains running on time). Their only child, my godmother, Suzette, had no children, and Bud and Marge took on the role of grandparents to me and my brother, Zak. We called them Uncle Bud and Aunt Marge, and in many ways I felt closer to them than to my biological grandparents. Uncle Bud was an avid golfer and often took me out with him, armed with two sets of clubs and a tiny cooler of homemade pimento cheese sandwiches packed by Aunt Marge. Halfway through a day on the links, Uncle Bud would pull the golf cart under a shade tree where we’d eat the sandwiches. For me, pimento cheese is inextricably linked with the memory of the salty South Carolina summer heat, the smell of the freshly cut grass and the outlines of my small fingers impressed in the cool white bread. Marge’s pimento cheese...

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Pesto & Asiago Tortellini Parla Pasta Recipe

Pesto & Asiago Tortellini Parla Pasta Recipe

Posted by on Sep 15, 2016 in Eat | 0 comments

Always running around on weeknights? Parla Pasta is my new solution to a fast, delicious meal.  Parla Pasta is made in High Point, North Carolina by Rick and Simone Drake. The Drake family has been crafting small-batch pasta since 1985 for restaurants and specialty stores that stake their reputation on quality Italian food. The pasta is made with all-natural ingredients and Parla Pasta guarantees there are no artificial preservatives.  Parla Pasta is available at your local Harris Teeter, Publix, Lowes Foods and Fresh Market. Make sure to check the freezer section for a variety of options like Cheese Ravioli, Chicken and Spinach Florentine Ravioli, Four Cheese Manicotti and more. I decided on the Asiago Tortellini so I could make a delicious pesto sauce to accompany the pasta. Below is my quick and easy go-to pesto recipe adapted from the Food Network Kitchen. Basil Pesto Recipe Ingredients 2 cups packed basil leaves 2 cloves garlic 1/4 cup pine nuts 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided Pink Himalayan sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste 1/2 cup freshly greated Peccorino cheese Directions  Combine basil, garlic and pine nuts in a food processor and pulse until coarsley chopped. Add 1/2 cup of olive oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Add remaining oil and pulse until smooth. Transfer pesto to a large mixing bowl and mix with the cheese. Simply boil the Asiago Tortellini Parla Pasta for about 7 minutes and top with the freshly made pesto. How easy was...

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An Evening for Italy: Dine at Il Palio to Raise Support for Earthquake Victims

Posted by on Aug 26, 2016 in Eat | 0 comments

Il Palio and Chef Teddy Diggs invite you for evening of dining to raise funds for the victims of the earthquake that recently shook central Italy. On Thursday, September 1, all profits from the bar and dining room will be donated to the Italian Red Cross to support the relief efforts. The evening’s menu will feature an array of special dishes hailing from the regions in Italy affected by the earthquake, like the classic pasta Amatriciana from Matrice. Guests will be able to enjoy Il Palio’s regional Italian favorites along with wine pairings that were selected for the occasion. Bacco Selections will also offer wine tastings, and 100 percent of Bacco Selections wine sales will support the Italian Red Cross. Come for dinner in the restaurant or drop by for drinks and appetizers at the bar from 5:30-9pm. Reservations are available at ilpalio.com or by calling 919-918-2545. Il Palio is located at 1505 E. Franklin Street, Chapel Hill,...

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3 Daughters Brewing: Making Waves in the Florida Craft Beer Community

3 Daughters Brewing: Making Waves in the Florida Craft Beer Community

Posted by on Aug 25, 2016 in Drink, Travel | 0 comments

Giant Jenga pieces crash to the floor and patrons sip on craft beers ranging from the St. Pete Blonde Ale to the Stern Line Stout. Not only is 3 Daughters Brewing an adult playground filled with life-sized versions of your favorite childhood games, but the brewery serves as owners Mike and Leigh Harting’s playful outlet to dream up exciting new craft beers with head brewer Ty Weaver. With 14 beers on tap, there’s truly a craft beer style for every palate, as well as plenty of games, live entertainment, food trucks and more to entice even the non-drinkers and children to join in on the fun at 3 Daughters Brewing. 3 Daughters Brewing all started with Mike Harting’s wish to create a special beer-battered fish recipe for his former St. Pete Italian restaurant, Bella Brava. Soon, Mike was offering his chef’s homebrew beer on tap as the perfect pairing. Chef Ty Weaver’s small homebrew operation escalated to brewing upwards of three times a week for Bella Brava, and this beer quickly became the number one beer on tap at the restaurant. Discovering their passion for creating innovative craft beer, Ty and Mike decided to take things to the next level and thus, 3 Daughters Brewing was born. Mike and Leigh are passionate about family; they often joked as the brewery was being built, “how many beers do we have to sell to put 3 Daughters through college?” (Hence the name!) When Swig visited 3 Daughters Brewing, Leigh stressed the importance of her family as well as the greater Florida community. 3 Daughters Brewing is a leader in the Florida craft beer scene and serves as a sponsor for the University of South Florida St. Petersburg College of Arts and Sciences’ Brewing Arts Program. This program provides students with the foundational knowledge and training for a successful career in the fast growing industry of craft brewing. 3 Daughters Brewing has a laboratory at the brewery that runs tests on craft beer and gives interns with the Brewing Arts Program hands-on experience. The St. Petersburg, Florida craft beer scene is booming and 3 Daughters Brewing supports their neighboring breweries and businesses.3 Daughters Brewing recently expanded their operation to include new a new...

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Cackalacky Introduces Beer-B-QT Seasoned Snack Peanuts

Cackalacky Introduces Beer-B-QT Seasoned Snack Peanuts

Posted by on Aug 23, 2016 in Eat | 1 comment

My friends over at Cackalacky, Inc. recently added Beer-B-Q™ Seasoned Snack Peanuts to its lineup of Southern lifestyle product offerings. Cackalacky® Beer-B-Q™ Seasoned Snack Peanuts are super extra-large kiln-roasted NC-grown peanuts that are flavored with dried beer and Cackalacky’s secret blend of Famously Original™ barbecue spices. Beer-B-Q’s slightly sweet, lightly hoppy, and tangy barbecue seasoning flavor profile paired with roasted peanuts is a delightful celebration of “all things Cackalacky” as well as a savory contrast to the brand’s much more fiery Cackalacky® Spiced Snack Peanuts. Originally launched as a grill seasoning and barbecue rub in 2004, the company first debuted its BEER-B-Q™ flavor on the national stage in 2005 on Food Network’s “BBQ with Bobby Flay.” Headquartered in Siler City, North Carolina and now celebrating its fifteenth year in business, Cackalacky, Inc. is a Southern lifestyle brand specializing in Cackalacky® branded and licensed sauces, flavored snacks, and craft beer as well as Cackalacky® brand apparel and outdoor sporting wares. Cackalacky products are available in grocery stores and specialty shops throughout the U.S. as well as via the company’s website at...

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