Beef & Lamb

It All Begins Here

Rosemary Onion Roll-Duo Dishes

Where does a good burger begin and end?  Everyone likes their burger in so many different ways.  It’s like the BLT, which we pondered on for a while as well.  You may not have asked us yet, but we will tell you what makes a good burger: tender, flavorful meat and an awesome bun.  You may think that both halves of the Duo love the same things, but it’s not true.  Not in the least.  Amir is not a fan of bread.  He cannot fathom eating bread as is.  He sees bread as a vessel, a carrier of other good eats.  On the other hand, Chrystal has a slight obsession.  Give her a baguette, some butter and maybe a sprinkle of salt, and she will be a happy camper.  If you’re not on an Atkins diet, you have to admit that a great burger must sit on delicious bread.  A terrible bun can ruin a burger.  So that’s where we’ll start.
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Starters

Maureen’s Test Kitchen

It’s that time!  We present another spectacular dish from this month’s guest blogger, our friend and co-worker Maureen.  And as Mo demonstrates, there’s nothing quite like a roasted vegetable.  Pick a vegetable, any vegetable.  Add some salt, pepper, oil, throw in a hot oven and…Boom.  Bam.  Bomb.  So good!  We’re so elated she picked this particular one to feature.

We were just reminiscing about the delicious roasted brussels sprouts served at the Foodbuzz Blogger Festival evening dinner. Brussels sprouts get a bad rap.  When you hear about this green, miniature, cabbage-shaped, bulb-thingy, images of your 12-year-old self come to mind, screaming in agony at the pain your parents inflicted on you by forcing you to eat said green thingy.  Now that your taste buds have matured—and your mind is open—try revisiting the spout.  You’ll be glad you did.   Tell us why Maureen…

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Poultry & Pork

Happiest Thanksgiving to All

Many of you are getting ready to celebrate Thanksgiving with your friends and family. We are both doing just that on opposite sides of the coast, but this past weekend, we had the chance to eat a pre-Thanksgiving meal with friends here in Los Angeles. One of the things we had to do when we moved to Los Angeles was create a sense of family amongst friends. We’ve both spent different holidays away from our blood relatives, and it’s nice to know that there are people around to be with you when you can’t go home. Enjoy the holiday however you’re spending it. Whether you’re with friends, family or your pet Fido, make it a good one.
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Poultry & Pork

One Last Round

Pumpkin and sausage lasagna-Duo Dishes

For a while, there were a lot of pumpkins bouncing around this blog. Usually the most frequent bright orange ingredient you’ll find here is a sweet potato, but it is pumpkin season, and we’ve been using the big fruit a lot. This may be one of, if not the final, pumpkin recipe you’ll see here until the need to overdose on pumpkin returns. Although it can be applied to recipes in a great way, there comes a time when you have to say ‘No more!’ Maybe you haven’t boarded the train to See You Laterville yet, but we may just be ready to bid adieu to pumpkin after this.
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Vegetarian

Loading Up on Good Stuff

Couscous and Pesto Vegetables-Duo Dishes

We all know the benefits of healthier eating, so we won’t bore you with the blah, blah, blah.  We will say that there is a completely different satisfaction that comes from eating healthier.  We love our cheesey pizzas, fluffy cakes, buttery cookies, crispy calzones, and ketchup dipped French fries as much, if not more, than you, but usually those meals and snacks can leave you feeling empty.  Sounds odd that heavy, high calorie foods can do that, but it’s true.  A belly full of empty calories affects you immediately (hello, sugar high or deathly stomachaches!), but a belly full of the good stuff leaves you vibrant, satisfied and guiltless.  It’s nice to have those types of meals to remind you that eating smart can still taste good.  Might as well squeeze a few healthy meals in between those pizza slices and French fries when you can.

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Special Events

A Big ‘Ol Win

Sweet Potato Cheesecake Pie 1-Duo Dishes
Sweet Potato Cheesecake Pie sliced for the judges.

Waking up early on a Saturday morning to bake is actually an enjoyable activity during the fall. It’s very soothing to do it while listening to KCRW-FM, our Santa Monica-based public radio station. At 10:00 am, there’s Ira Glass’ This American Life, and right at 11:00 am, Evan Kleiman, Chef & Owner of Angeli Caffe, comes on with Good Food. One morning this summer, Evan announced her Pie a Day project. She would make a pie every day for three months. That’s a lot of pie! Somewhere along the line, an announcement hit the airwaves that she would host KCRW’s 1st Annual Good Food Pie Contest in honor of Evan’s efforts. We were so in.

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Cakes, Pies & Tarts

Why You Love Fall Mornings

Pear Walnut Coffee Cake - Duo Dishes

Well good morning.  How are you?  We have coffee cake.  Surely you want some?  Surely.  Somewhere up there with fluffy biscuits, creamy vegetable tarts, and Southern shrimp and grits, there’s coffee cake as one of the most desirable breakfast dishes.  Imagine waking up to this on a cool morning.  Brew up a mug of coffee, tea or hot chocolate, and you’re ready to eat.  This was actually made for a dinner party where the theme was ‘breakfast’.  Breakfast for dinner.  Let’s all just admit that breakfast for dinner is always a great idea.  Why do you think people love going to Ihop for pancakes late at night?  For this dinner party, everyone had to supply a traditional morning platter, and this is something that rides the line between bread and dessert.  We sat down to an asparagus and potato frittata, roasted potatoes speckled with hearty turkey sausage and fresh watermelon and pineapple with cream.  This coffee cake was a great way to end it all, but there’s no reason why it won’t be baked again for a future fall morning.

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