Simone's Blog

Happy Belated New Year!

Happy Belated New Year!

January 30, 2015

I find myself apologizing for the lag in communication every time I write - so apologies again! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. Just as I’m sure it was for you, it was busy for us, capped by a quick, whirlwind trip to Europe with Simi for us to cook in Switzerland and eat in Firenze (see above wall painting discovered in our travels on Borgo Santi Apostoli in Florence). More on that next time!

It’s hard to believe that it’s already 2015. We’ve come so far this year and we’re loving every moment, especially those we get to spend with our amazing guests. We thank you for your support, honest feedback, and love.

Never one to slow down, below is our list of news and upcoming events and a recipe for DELICIOUS turkey & bean chili that my college friend Elaine Walters shared almost two decades ago. I have been making this ever since and it’s perfect for this hunker-down weather we’re having…oh, and for that big game on Sunday!

Hope to see you all soon! xoxox Joe

Simone’s News!

Wine Dinner. THIS MONDAY, 2February, we are proud to host the next event in our wine dinner series! Once again we are partnering with our friends at Grapes & Grains in Barrington to present the lovely wines of Tenuta Sant’Antonio from the Verona region of Italy.

Owner Armando Castagnedi will be on hand to ensure we have a most informative and fun evening! There are just a few seats left, so call the restaurant at 401-247-1200 to make a reservation and check out the menu here!

Valentine’s Day. We’re excited to celebrate our first Valentine’s Day with you this year! We will have two seatings – 6pm and 8:15pm – on Saturday 14 February, for a three-course prix fixe menu. The cost is $45 per person or $68 per person with wine parings. Details here!

Plate4Good. We are proud to announce the next beneficiary of our Plate4Good! Now through April, a portion of the proceeds from orders of Warm Eggplant Sformato with Divine Providence Cheese and Pommrola will be donated to the Warren Animal Shelter!

We are also proud to announce that we were able to raise more than $600 for our last recipient, Good Neighbors, the only soup kitchen and food pantry in the

East Bay

area serving hot meals five days a week. Thanks to everyone who supported us!

Recipe: Turkey & Bean Chili

This recipe was shared with me many years ago by my college friend, Elaine Walters.

2 lb ground turkey breast
1lb ground pork
2 cups diced onions ¼” dice
¼ cup olive oil
1tbsp oregano
¼ cup chile powder (or to taste)
2-3 tbsp ground cumin (to taste—I like lots)
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1 14 oz can tomato sauce
1 28 oz can whole peeled tomatoes (poured into a bowl and crushed with your hands)
2 cups or more chicken stock
Salt to taste
2 cans chickpeas—drained and rinsed
2 cans small white beans—drained and rinsed

  1. Add the olive oil and onions to a large pot, set over med-high heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the oregano, stir to combine and bloom the scent and then add the ground turkey and pork. Cook, stirring often and breaking up l lumps with back of spoon, until opaque—about 8-10 minutes.
  3. Add the chile powder, cumin, allspice and cinnamon, stir till the flavors bloom and then add the tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes with their juices and stock.
  4. Bring to a simmer and cook until the sauce has slightly thickened, about 15 minutes or so.
  5. Add the beans and chickpeas and continue simmering for 5-10 min. Remove from heat and check seasonings.

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