I basically think brunch was invented to mask the plague of the hangover though Anthony Bourdain would argue that it was invented for restaurants to rid themselves of about to go bad ingredients. Whatever the case may be, most brunches consist of some type of libation often referred to as “the hair of the dog.” Like many phrases in modern language, I don’t think half the people tossing them out have any idea what they even mean. So, I’m here to drop some knowledge on your weekend.
The hair of the dog isn’t nearly as sexy as you might hope. What it stems from is the treatment of a rabid dog bite. They placed hair from the rabid dog into the wound to prevent evil consequences. I bet that worked like a dream. Now it has come to mean treating a hangover with more of the liquid devil responsible for your throbbing frontal lobe and Saturday shakes.
In honor of the fact that my dog has a better life than most humans (have you seen his Instagram?) and the fact that I may or may not have passed out last night with a Dove bar hanging halfway out of my mouth on the couch in Amagansett, here are some favorite hairs of dogs drink recipes.
Red Little Havana
- 1-1/2 ounces Effen Cucumber Vodka
- 5 ounces Green Bloody Mary Mix
Green Bloody Mary Mix
- 1 gallon green vegetable juice (Garces used cucumbers, tomatillos, kale, and spinach)
- 1 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 1 cup lemon juice
- 1/3 cup hot sauce
- 1 cup horseradish
- 1/2 cup celery salt
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- Natural green food coloring as needed (to make it super green)
First, mix up a big batch of the Green Bloody Mary MIx.
Next, combine the ingredients for the Red Little Havana in a mixing glass. Add ice and shake lightly. Transfer to a highball glass and garnish with a medley of colorful vegetable sticks, i.e. celery, carrots, bell peppers, etc.
- 1 oz. gin
- 1 oz. Campari
- 1 oz. sweet vermouth
- Ice cubes
- Tools: mixing glass, barspoon, strainer
- Glass: cocktail or double rocks
- Garnish: orange twist
Stir ingredients in a mixing glass, strain into a chilled cocktail glass (or ice-filled double rocks glass) and garnish.
1 1/2 oz. gin
3/4 oz. fresh lemon juice
1 oz. simple syrup (1:1)
1 to 2 oz. club soda
Tools: shaker, strainer
Combine all ingredients, except club soda, and shake with ice. Strain into an ice-filled glass and top with soda.
There are two things about Valentine’s Day that go hand in hand… hearts and chocolate. Personally, I’m a fan of both, so I’m happy to share a way for you to combine them and delight yourself and those around you… okay, so maybe not your thighs. When home visiting my mom, we decided to whip up this tasty treat and to justify making fudge in mid January, I prefaced it by saying my readers would love this recipe and then came up with the brilliant idea of ditching the standard squares for happy little hearts. And if you think about it… this recipe could go on and on and on… bunnies for Easter, trees for Christmas, initials for engagements… If there’s a cookie cutter, there’s a way.
- 2/3 cup evaporated milk
- 1 1/2 sticks butter
- 3 cups sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 5 cups mini marshmallows
- 12 oz (1 bag) semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Combine sugar, salt, butter, and evaporated milk.
- Bring to a rolling boil.
- Cook five minutes stirring constantly.
- Remove from heat.
- Add marshmallows, chocolate chips, and vanilla.
- Stir until smooth.
- Pour (with the help of a spatula) into a butter 9 x 13 inch pan.
- Smooth evenly and allow to cool.
- Use 1 inch heart shaped cookie cutter (eat your mistakes).
Now go fudge yourself.
One day while chatting with one of my best gal pals, I went MIA (no, not like the middle finger wielding MIA). I had to apologize and tell her that I had gone ahead and whipped up some lemon bars on a whim. She laughed and asked when the mini van was coming. I assured her NEVER and explained that it all started with this tree. That, my fine friends, is a Meyer’s lemon tree and it’s happily growing in our back yard. Not only does it look pretty, but it yields a very deliciously sweet version of a lemon. Lately, it’s been yielding a lot of lemons and rather than just let them drop to the ground and rot, I figured I need to put these lovely lemons to work.
My mom mentioned that her best gal pal had a really delightful recipe from Barefoot Contessa and so I decided to give it a go. Now, I must warn you… this recipe is a labor of love. It is well worth all of the effort though.
- 1/2 lb unsalted butter (room temperature)
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 cups all purpose flower
- 1/8 tbs kosher salt
- 6 extra large eggs (room temperature)
- 3 cups granulated sugar
- 2 tbs lemon zest (4 to 6 lemons)
- 1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- confectioner’s sugar for dusting
- Preheat oven to 350
- For crust: cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Combine flour and salt and add to the butter until just mixed.
- Dump dough onto well floured board and gather into a ball, flatten the dough w/ floured hands and press into a 9x13x2 inch baking sheet, building up a ½ inch edge on all sides.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until very lightly browned.
- Let cool on wire rack.
- Leave oven on.
- For the Filling: Whisk together eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour.
- Pour over the crust and bake for 30 to 35 minutes until the filling is set.
- Let cool to room temp.
- Cut into triangles and dust with confectioner’s sugar.
- Store in the fridge.
Make lemon bars.
Now that we are through cheersing all the celebs, it’s time to celebrate someone else. Someone you might know. Someone like… ME! It is officially my “birthday week” and I’m ready to put on my party shoes only to kick them right back off. Other than a killer outfit and some fun friends to celebrate with, a girl has got to have a signature cocktail. Luckily for me, I have one made… just for me.
Alright, alright… so maybe this cocktail wasn’t made “especially” for me, but I like to pretend that it was. This pretty pink drink has several variations- each one delicious, bubbly, and sweet (like me). Below are the recipes for a classic kir, kir royale, and kir imperial. Enjoy and celebrate with me!
Cheers (to me).
Okay, so many of you have probably vowed to spend 2012 in the gym working off all those winter pounds you acquired while hibernating… and while that’s all good and fine, let’s be serious. You will probably last at the gym for about a week (two tops) before going back to your old ways. And well, that’s okay. Promises are made to be broken, right? Okay, okay. You should keep your promises, but if you happen to have a cheat day and are craving a bit of comfort food, I have the perfect little place (and recipe) to do just that.
The Meatball Shop with three locations in New York, is exactly what it sounds like. A restaurant serving up meatballs with little fuss and lots of flavor. With a straightforward menu (checboxes included), there are plenty of options without being overwhelming. While I opted for a classic meatball hoagie, you could order anything from naked balls, to sliders, to spaghetti with meatballs. There is something to to please everyone’s palate. A small venue that doesn’t take reservations draws in celebrities and locals alike.
Can’t make it into the shop? Here’s a recipe to make your own balls. (Their cookbook is now also available for purchase here):
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 4 tbs unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup Franks Redhot Sauce (or your favorite hot sauce)
- 1 lb ground chicken (preferably thigh meat)
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 celery stalk, minced
- 3/4 cup bread crumbs
- 1 tsp salt
- Preheat the oven to 450. Drizzle the olive oil into a 9×13 inch baking dish and use your hands to evenly coat the entire surface. Set aside.
- Combine the butter and hot sauce in a small saucepan, and cook over low heat, whisking until the butter is melted and fully incorporated. Remove from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for 10 minutes.
- Combine the ground chicken, hot sauce mixture, egg, celery, bread crumbs, and salt in a large mixing bowl and mix by hand until thoroughly incorporated.
- Roll the mixture into round, 3/4 inch balls, making sure to pack the meat firmly. Place the balls in the prepared baking dish, being careful to line them up snugly and in even rows vertically and horizontally to form a grid. The meatballs should be touching one another.
- Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the meatballs are firm and cooked through. A meat thermometer inserted into the center of a meatball should read 165 degrees.
- Allow the meatballs to cool for 5 minutes in the baking dish before serving.
- Serve with blue cheese (or ranch) dressing.