Friday, October 30, 2015

#FlavCraze Atlanta Blogger Competition

When I was first approached to be a part of the organicgirl #FlavCraze Atlanta Blogger Competition, I knew I wanted to participate, so when my box of greens and dressings arrived, I dove right in and started tasting! I have to say that I absolutely love the new products, and I'm not just saying that because they gave them to me to try, I genuinely adore them! 

I am a longtime fan of pea shoots, as you know if you read this blog regularly, I love them in pasta and stir-fried pea shoots are one of my favorite things to order at dim sum, so the new sweet pea blend caught my attention immediately. When I started tasting it with each of their four new dressings, it was delicious with all of them, but I had an ah-ha moment when I tasted it with the lemon agave, it was the perfect combination of sweet and tart and I knew I had the beginnings of a fantastic dish. 

Living in Atlanta, I have tons of great restaurants to choose from, representing cuisines from all over the globe. While it is hard to choose just one favorite, I frequently find myself craving the light, bright flavors of South East Asia, which is why I decided to use my new bounty to do my own take on Vietnamese summer rolls. 

Shrimp & Pea Shoot Summer Rolls

1/2 lb cooked shrimp
2 c organicgirl sweet pea greens
1 bell pepper, cut into matchsticks
1/4 c organicgirl lemon agave dressing
4 sheets rice paper

Dipping sauce
1/4 c organicgirl lemon agave dressing
1/4 c crunchy peanut butter

This is one of those recipes that you really need to have all of your ingredients prepped and ready to go, because once you start working with rice paper, you have a finite window to get each roll made. First make your dipping sauce by whisking together the 1/4 c organicgirl lemon agave dressing and 1/4 c crunchy peanut butter until combined. Next, take the 2 c organicgirl sweet pea greens, bell pepper and 1/4 c organicgirl lemon agave dressing and toss lightly. Fill a large shallow bowl with hot water, from the tap is fine, it doesn't have to be boiling. Take 1 sheet of rice paper and submerge it in the water for 5 seconds. It will still feel stiff when you pull it out, but it will continue to hydrate and soften. Place it on your work surface and form a line of shrimp across the edge closest to you. Top that with a quarter of the greens/pepper mixture and begin to roll your rice paper. Try to keep the rice paper as tight as possible to make the summer rolls easy to cut and eat. Repeat with remaining sheets of rice paper and filling. Cut in half and serve with dipping sauce.

Tip: Don't try to do more than one at a time as the rice paper turns into a fragile, sticky mess really quickly!

For more ways to use all of the new organicgirl products, follow them here:
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Pinterest: organicgirl

Where to Find organicgirl Products
organicgirl products are available at grocery stores and natural food markets nationwide, including Whole Foods, Publix, Natures Garden Express and many neighborhood markets in Atlanta. To request availability at your local store, print and submit this product request form to your produce manager:

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Taste of Atlanta Barcraft Semi-Finals 2015

Competitors and Judges
If you are one of my loyal readers, despite my infrequency in posting, you probably already know about the Barcraft Competition at Taste of Atlanta, mostly because I wrote about it here. This year's competition was a little different, because instead of having 3 rounds of competition at different bars around Atlanta, they decided to have one big mix-off at Graveyard Tavern

What made this year's contest fun was that it was really well attended, with 13 competitors, plus their friends and supporters, it was kind of like attending a family reunion. As we chowed down on chicken wings and fingers, fries and tots, plus some healthy vegetable looking things that I ignored, we caught up with each other and visited before the competition started.

This year's winner was none other than the Spitfire herself, Paige Lane, Bar Manager at Lady Bird Grove & Mess Hall. She was the very first to compete and made a lasting impression with the City Slicker, her strawberry rhubarb cocktail. I'm not going to lie, it was my favorite too, especially the Fernet-Branca pickled strawberries she used as a garnish, I could have eaten the entire jar! The other component of her win is that Paige has raised her competition game so much over the past year or so. Even though this is a fairly informal competition, she took the time to arrange all of her mise on slate tiles, and even had her glasses set on mirrored coasters on another larger slate tile, an incredibly attractive and professional presentation.

Another of my favorites was called something that I'm not listing here, because I try to be family friendly, but it had Kahlua and a shaved white & milk chocolate dusted rim. Now that I think about it, that was a missed opportunity, if I had combined Paige's strawberries and Ari's chocolate...

Arianne Fielder's fall inspired apple cocktail, go get one at The Butcher, The Baker

If you want to support Paige or cheer on any of the other finalists, you need to buy a VIP ticket for Taste of Atlanta on Saturday, September 26, as the Semi-Finals will take place in the VIP Grand Tasting Experience with Beer and Wine by Hop City tent from 12:30P-2:00P. Finals will be held at The Chef's Table on Sunday, September 27 at 3:00P.