Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Using Up All Those Cucumbers

This time of year, piles upon piles of them stare you down and seemingly multiply like Gremlins when you turn your back for a second. Today we're all about cucumbers, and we have a few ideas about how to make an abundance of cukes a more appealing situation this summer.

We have a bunch from our family's Concord Farms sitting on the counter this morning, and we're going to go with quick pickles and maple cucumber lemonade! Check out today's WKNO radio interview with and article for more cucumber dishes you can check off your list this season. Jennifer Chandler, cookbook author and host of The Weekly Dish, was kind enough to ask for our favorite cucumber recipes this week.

(And if you've never made summer salad, you have to try our version!)

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Thank you, Memphis!

We were overjoyed to see the response to our pop-up restaurant at Iris Etc. today. We had to close up early at 4:00 after running out of most of the dishes by 3:00. Thank you to all who supported us today! We will be working on a recap post with recipes for next week.

Friday, July 10, 2015

TCV + Iris Etc. Pop-Up: The Prep & Set-Up

Now on to what you can expect on Saturday! Our first pop-up restaurant on 7.11.15 at Iris Etc. (62 S. Cooper in midtown Memphis) is cash only and happens from 11 a.m. until we run out of food. See the menu HERE; everything is $5 so that it's easy to try a bunch of stuff. We hope you can stop by and thought we'd give you some background about the event and let you know what to expect.

Here goes…

When it comes to planning an event, we think about the food first and then start picturing the atmosphere and the way things are going to work. When we throw a party at home, we try to think through what we want the experience to be like for our guests. So for this Saturday's TCV pop-up restaurant, we want the vibe to match the menu: summery, casual, and lighthearted. We lucked out because Iris Etc. is quite a beautiful canvas. We're dreaming of black-and-white gingham, bright flowers, and an inside-outside party set-up. We might even tote our record player to the space and play some old-school country and Memphis classics for you.

Today we wanted to give you a peek at the place so you can look forward to checking it out and enjoying some TCV summer favorites this Saturday. You're going to grab a sushi-style menu, check off what you'd like to order, hand your menu back to the girl (most likely Amy!) behind the desk up front, and hang out with a drink while your food is put together, and then your name is called and your order is handed to you.

We'll have a few seats and tables here and there, but this isn't your usual sit down, order, and converse politely at the table for hours type of thing; it's more like a food truck experience. You get to walk around and mingle and are not stuck in one spot. You decide what works for you -- pick up a few items and go do all your Saturday stuff or stick around for a while catching up with friends and ordering a couple of items here and there at your leisure. We've hosted planned-out dinners with courses and structure and the like, and this is designed to be the total opposite of that. The very reasonable prices -- everything's priced at $5 -- reflect the informality because we want you to be able to try lots of stuff.

So excited to see you on Saturday and share some of our favorite dishes with you. This is another first for us, and it's going to be great to see you right there with us as we give our pop-up all we've got!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Menu for the Chubby Veg + Iris Etc. Pop-Up this Saturday, 7.11.15 at Iris Etc.

Tomato and Pimento Cheese Pie
Summer tomatoes served with lemon-zest-and-thyme pimento cheese and topped with puff pastry

Carrot Corn Dog
Organic carrot encased in our jalapeño and smoked cheddar cornbread, our cookbook’s cover star, and served with Creole mustard sauce

Cabbage Kimchi Dumplings (V)
That kimchi we always make stuffed into wonton wrappers and served with peanuts and white soy sauce

Smoked Shiitake Mushroom Tamale (V)
One of our most-requested dishes made from local corn and mushrooms and topped with charred corn salsa. This one’ll likely surprise the most staunch tamale purist...

Andouille Eggplant Po Boy + Tabasco Pickles
French bread with grilled, spiced Japanese eggplant “sausage” and house-made pickles from cucumbers from our family farm, Concord Farms; dressed with lettuce, tomatoes, mayo, and mustard (V if you ask for it minus the mayo) 

Smoked Fig Jam with a Waffle Iron Grilled Cheese
Our vegetarian take on smoky bacon and onion jam: whole wheat with cheddar and mozzarella

Baked Cauliflower Wings with Black-and-Blue Dressing
Local cauliflower florets tossed in Crazy Good Hot Sauce and served with carrot sticks, celery, and black pepper and blue cheese dressing (V if you ask for it minus the dressing)

Stuffed Squash Blossom and Creole Squash
Tempura-fried squash blossom stuffed with roasted carrot puree and soft cheese served atop spicy squash and zucchini from our family farm, Concord Farms

Grilled Watermelon Salad with Goat Cheese, Jewel Tomatoes, and Honey-Lime Vinaigrette
Watermelon changes from sweet to savory on the grill; we highlight this amazing transformation with our spicy, salty take on this Southern favorite

Banana Ice Cream Sandwich with Oatmeal Ginger ‘Power’ cookies (V)
A healthified ice cream sandwich with raisins, cranberries, walnuts, and coconut; vegan, free of refined sugar, and 101% amazing

Roasted Peach Shortcake with Lavender Cream
Our beloved gluten-free almond biscuits served with the season’s best fruit and herbaceous whipped cream

Rosemary Lemonade With Ripe Stone Fruit (V)
Lemons and herbs from our garden sweetened with maple syrup and infused with the flavors of summer


Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Flower Crown Pre-Orders for Saturday's TCV + Iris Etc. Pop-Up Restaurant

This morning through Friday at 10 a.m., you may pre-order your very own *BEAUTIFUL CROWN* to be picked up at the TCV / Iris Etc. Pop-Up Restaurant on Saturday! (See more about the event HERE and HERE.) Grown-up and children's crowns will be made ahead by Jill Forrester of Whitton Farms, and pre-ordering (from right now until 10 a.m. on Friday) at our Square link below guarantees your crown will be ready for you on Saturday.

Grown-up flower crown: $15
Child's flower crown: $10
Child's greenery crown: $7

(Know that the pop-up event is cash only, but we're thrilled to be able to offer a few things ahead of time on our Square site! We also have signed, personalized books available for pre-order at the same link above.)

Monday, July 6, 2015

The TCV + Iris Etc. Pop-Up Restaurant this Saturday, July 11!

Come enjoy our favorite summertime TCV recipes at Iris Etc. on Overton Square in Midtown this Saturday for lunch or dinner! It's going to be casual, fun, and a la carte, and you don't need a reservation. Check out more details HERE (including some of the featured vegetarian dishes) and stop by 62 South Cooper from 11-8. Keep up with us this week as we share how it's going along with a surprise or two along the way. Hope to see you there!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

A Backyard Fire Pit Cookout: Carrot Dogs with Slaw + A S'mores Bar for IHA's Inspired Home Blog

We are excited to have been selected by the International Housewares Association to contribute to their Inspired Home blog. We've been compensated for our time, but our opinions are, of course, our own. 

We'd NEVER before cooked over a backyard fire pit, so we gave it a shot and ended up making some great food this past Sunday evening! Thanks to the International Housewares Association, we had a few great new tools to make it all go smoothly. The carrot dogs we roasted with our guest turned out awesome; also, it's been on our minds for a while now to put together a make-your-own-s'mores bar, so we finally did it!

Go check out the IHA Inspired Home blog for the full story and see what you can do with some open-flame cooking this Fourth of July weekend! Have a beautiful holiday!