#SCBDExclusive: #NJWFF Grand Tasting Recap

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This past Saturday, I had the pleasure of attending of the Grand Tasting at the 5th Annual New Jersey Wine & Food Festival better known as NJWFF with my boyfriend, Jason. The NJWFF takes place at the Crystal Springs Resort in Hamburg, NJ.  The ride to Crystal Springs was breathless, even with the snow, which if anything made it more magical.

Jason & I at NJWFF

Jason & I at NJWFF

The event was huge and got a great crowd, each room filled with other foodies like us trying the best food and wine New Jersey offers. The amount of food we consumed was overwhelming and it was hard to take food pictures because it was so crowded and I couldn’t wait to get each sample in my stomach, but I still remember our favorites. Our favorite room was the Spanish charcuterie room that was just added on the weekend of the event. The men behind the charcuterie were awesome at answering at answering questions we had. Plus, the charcuterie was some of the best I’ve had.

Some of our favorite dishes we tasted were:

  1. Braised Short Rib from American Cut
  2. Bison Bruschetta from The Orange Squirrel Restaurant
  3. Filet Mignon with Truffle Creamed Spinach from Strip House
  4. Applewood Smoked Trout, with Compressed Apple, Pickled Breakfast Radish, and Celery Root Puree from Ho-Ho-Kus Inn

Those were just some dishes that stuck out to us at the tasting! It was great to see the chefs in their element! I definitely want to check out the restaurants mentioned above, since I haven’t. All of the dishes stood out to us because they were unique and memorable!

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Chef Jose Andres & I at NJWFF!

One of the highlights of the night, was meeting the chef of honor and legend, Chef Jose Andres. I even got a picture with him! He was so sweet and it was unexpected which made it that much better! After meeting Chef Jose we continued to explore the different food and wines a bit more, and catch some of the entertainment including a really talented tapper.

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It was definitely a night to remember and I would love to attend NJWFF again next year and try to stay at Crystal Springs if possible! We were both so proud to be from the great state of NJ with so many talented chefs!

Hope to see you at NJWFF next year!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

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#SCBDExclusive: Sara Monica, Founder of #SCBD on panel of Copy Crafting 101

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Having catchy copy if crucial to any successful blog, so I am honored to announce that I will be speaking at Copy Crafting 101 in NYC next month at Alley NYC. I’ll discussing the importance of having good, creative copy when it comes to social media and having constant site content!

To find out more details & RSVP, click here.

Crafting Copy NYC 4.3.13

Hope to see you there!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

SCBD’s Boyfriend #Budget #Friendly Recipes: Jay’s Big Deal Small Chic-ken Recipe

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My boyfriend & home chef, Jason!

Hey readers, it’s me Sara the founder of SCBD! So, I love the fact that my boyfriend Jason is a foodie like me! Weekends are always fun whether we are going out checking out a new spot or we’re cooking together. When we’re not cooking together, him and I take turns on who cooks. So every time he cooks I know I’m in for a treat and I love it, he’s my chef! He’s really good at cooking hearty, budget-friendly recipes. This weekend, along with many other delicious dishes he made this awesome chicken, better known as Jay’s Big Deal Small Chic-ken. He wanted me to share his awesome recipe with you all. I’m sure you will love it too!

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Jay’s Big Deal Small Chic-ken

–INGREDIENTS-

  • 1 chicken (halved)
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro (chopped)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley (chopped)
  • 3 Tbs. Fresh rosemary (chopped)
  • 1 lemon zest (shavings of 1 whole lemon skin)
  • 1 whole lemon (squeezed)
  • 1-3 garlic cloves (chopped) and according to taste
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup oil

   For heat add Jalapenos or crushed red pepper according to taste

Top Pic- The finished productLeft- MarinatingRight- When it came out of the oven

Top Pic- The finished product
Left- Marinating
Right- When it came out of the oven

–STEPS–

  1. Place halved chicken open side down in pan (be sure you buy a whole chicken and have it halved but NOT separated into two different pieces).
  2. Sprinkle salt and pepper over chicken. 
  3. Combine cilantro, parsley, rosemary, lemon zest, lemon, garlic, salt,  pepper, and oil to make the marinade.
  4. Once all ingredients are mixed, spread/pour marinade over top of the chicken (it is recommended that it marinate for 24-hours).

–COOKING–

(Recommended) 

  1. Turn grill on to medium-high heat.
  2. Place chicken open side down on grill for 15-20 minutes. (Do not dump marinade over top as it will cause your chicken to flame up.)
  3. GENTLY BASE THE CHICKEN WITH A BRUSH!
  4. Flip over and grill for another 15-20 minutes and your done!! 
  5. Let cool and enjoy!

OR

(Baking) “A healthier option!”

  1. Pre-heat oven to 415 degrees
  2. Place chicken in pan with marinade into oven for about 45 minutes or until a golden brown.
  3. Remove! Cool and enjoy!!!
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Our leftovers, even better the next day!

The recipe is definitely one of my new favorites and I hope he makes it again! The marinade is so delicious and compliments it so well! That’s the basic recipe but you can add cut red potatoes to the pan (in picture above) that make a great side & complete the meal! A huge plus is that you’ll definitely have leftovers to eat the next day, if they last that long!

Look out for more of Jason’s and my recipes up on the blog, as he has more to share with you and I’ll be taken pictures as always next time he cooks! 🙂

Stay tuned for more of SCBD’s Boyfriend #Budget #Friendly Recipes!

Happy Eating!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

#DealAlert Tacos & Tequila at Tenth Avenue Burrito

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This month, I’ve been going home every so often to clean my room since I’ve moved out since I have time, and to just get my thoughts together. Oh yeah, can’t forget of course spending time with friends & family. Last week, one of my best friend’s, Sam who is in graduate school was coming home for her spring break so we decided we’d hang out since I had time and didn’t mind coming down. I saw her earlier in the afternoon and had to pick a place for us to grab dinner that night along with our friend Katie.

 I was scrolling through Facebook that afternoon and saw that 10th Ave Burrito (which has been featured in Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives) had a $10 All You Can Eat (AYCE) Taco Special. That sounded great and since Christie granted the places that have their seasonal liquor license early since the Belmar St. Patrick’s Day parade was the week earlier, they had their liquor license. Going by the beach followed by tacos, tequila, and a three musketeer reunion (what my girls and I call ourselves), what could be better?

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Before we went to 10th Ave Burrito we wanted to see how Belmar looked since Sandy, it was devastating– the boardwalk was barely there. We saw what we wanted and were starving. When we first arrived we were seated immediately, we each took a look at the drink menu and ordered our tequila cocktails. I started off with The Oaxaca Old Fashioned which was served in a martini glass, it was really delicious and a deal for only $7. Katie & Sam each got the Tequila Sunrise ($6) which they loved!

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Next, we ordered our AYCE tacos– Katie & I started with steak tacos and Sam stuck with chicken the whole night. The way the AYCE tacos works at 10th Ave Burrito is that you start off with two tacos of your choice, when you feel your getting low and want to order your next round, you can (any kind of taco excluding shrimp). Sam stuck to chicken but I tried the chicken, fish, and chorizo. Katie tried the chorizo and chicken. We both liked steak best and Sam really enjoyed the chicken tacos. The three of us sort of had a contest of who could eat the most, Katie & I were close but I won.

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We got to the meet the owner of 10th Ave Burrito while we were there. He was incredibly friendly and is constantly making sure everyone is enjoying their meal there. Our waitress was very attentive and was always there when we were ready to order another round of tacos. The tequila cocktails are great and are reasonably priced for what you get. The tacos are delicious and you get a ton of food, especially if  you eat a lot for $10!

I had such a great experience and loved dinner so much that I definitely want to come back when I’m home again soon!

Cheers!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

10th Ave Burrito is located at 801 Belmar Plaza in Belmar, NJ

#SCBD takes on City Pizza Overnight!

There is nothing like a good piece of New York pizza. If you’ve seen Elizabeth‘s and Lauren‘s posts, you know that the SCBD team are always up for a good slice. Almost two weeks ago, on a Friday morning in my case I got my four pies delivered to my apartment from City Pizza Overnight. Unlike Lauren & Elizabeth I did not get any gluten-free pizzas but got to try a veggie thin crust, regular veggie, plain, and pepperoni!

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I was actually in the middle of cooking a late breakfast when mine were delivered so I decided why not just eat lunch so I popped in the plain pizza and put the rest in the freezer to eat over the weekend and the following week. It was incredibly easy to make, unwrap it, keep the cardboard circle (I almost didn’t but you can put it on it to serve after), pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees and once its ready, put the pizza in for 6-7 minutes. It was delicious and definitely some of the closest to New York style pizza I’ve tasted being it was shipped form Chicago!

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That night I decided to see if my roommate Leah was interested in having one of the pizzas so we got some beer and had a pizza party. We decided to eat some of the plain I had leftover and to try one of the veggie pies. We loved how full of veggies the pie was and the plain was great reheated in the oven again.

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To end the weekend, we decided to put in the pepperoni pie. My boyfriend was over so between the three of us — the pie was finished in no time. I loved how covered in peperoni it was and the thin crust was perfect. FYI: Thin crust is my favorite.

I’d highly recommend City Pizza Overnight for your next party because you get 3 pies sent to your doorstep and it’s definitely worth the money. Also, if you live far from the city and have never had New York style pizza, this is the perfect opportunity to try it! The ordering process is easy and user friendly and the owner, Adam is always giving the utmost customer support if you have any questions.

Happy Eating! 😀

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

#SCBDEvent: Burgerwood to Open in New Location in Englewood

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Now that I live in Bergen County, there are tons of places I want to try. Burgerwood, which is right next door to me in Englewood is one of them. Burgerwood is a local burger joint, that recently opened by local Bergen County young professionals. Now, this is the dish SCBD is all about so when I got word of their Grand Opening Party in their new location, 24 Van Brunt Street (right next to BergenPAC) I had to tell my readers, especially my Bergen County readers the details! Make sure you save the date– Friday, March 29th because you won’t want to miss it!

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Burgerwood, which was formerly located on Palisade Avenue, will now have a full bar, bigger space, outdoor seating, valet parking and more at the new location.  Delivery will  still be available and their number hasn’t changed so now you can still come to get the same great burger… and a beer!

Burgerwood‘s Grand Opening Party starts at 7:00 PM and goes until midnight, there will be a live dj providing music for the night and drink specials for those who show up with flyers. To find out more details and RSVP, check out the Facebook event, here.

Hope to see you there! Cheers!

Sara SCBD Logo Edited

Homemade Snickers Bars {careful- these are addictive!}

These homemade snickers bars might just be my new favorite thing. Store bought Snickers bars are all well and good- but these take it to a whole new level. They’re chocolaty and nutty and melt in your mouth- striking the perfect balance between salty and sweet. It looks like a lot of steps, and it is, but they come together pretty quickly and require minimal dexterity to execute. Either way- these bars are worth any amount of effort. Plan on eating one and then giving the rest to deserving friends, or you’ll risk eating the whole batch!

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Makes one 9×13 pan or roughly 12 medium size bars

Bottom Chocolate Layer

  • 1 bag milk chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter

Thoroughly grease you baking pan. Melt ingredients together in a saucepan over low heat, then pour into the baking dish and spread evenly. Let cool and harden completely. (I put mine in the freezer to speed up the process).

Nougat Peanut Layer

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 2 cups marshmallow fluff
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 2 cup salted peanuts chopped, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add in sugar and milk, stirring until dissolved, then bring to a boil. Allow the mixture to cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in fluff, peanut butter and vanilla, and whisk until smooth. Turn off the heat and fold in the peanuts, then pour over bottom chocolate layer. Let cool completely. (Again, you can use the freezer to speed it all up).

Caramel Layer

  • 1 14-ounce bag of caramels
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream

Combine ingredients in a saucepan over low heat. Allow the caramels to melt, whisking occasionally, until smooth – this took about 10 minutes for me. Pour over nougat layer and let cool completely.

Top Chocolate Layer

  • 1 bag milk chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter

Melt ingredients together in a saucepan or microwave, then pour over caramel and spread until even. Let cool and harden completely.

Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving, or freeze for a good 15 minutes, then cut as desired. These can stay good at room temperature, but they do get gooey. If you keep them in the fridge, allow them to warm up a bit before serving.

Adapted from the recipe on http://www.howsweeteats.com