Wander Woman

Food & Cocktails

Breakfast Spaghetti

by Wander Woman on May.04, 2014, under Food & Cocktails


I dream about pasta every night.

Sometimes I’ll wake and make a plate of it for breakfast.

This latest version of Breakfast Spaghetti is easy: Just cook crumbled sausage, remove from skillet, then sautée lots of garlic (at least 5 cloves), chopped onion and tomato in the sausage-greased skillet. In a bowl, mix 3-4 eggs, half-and-half and a good amount of parmesan cheese. Meanwhile, you should be boiling water and cooking a gargantuan amount of spaghetti.

When the spaghetti is al dente, dump the pasta in the skillet and top with egg mixture. Add crumbled sausage back to the skillet, then toss the noodles thoroughly until egg is mostly cooked through (noodles should be glossy, not dry as a bucket of sand and cooked to death).

Sprinkle copious amounts of chopped basil over the top, and, just like that, you have a perfect, filling Sunday brunch pasta.

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Herb + Goat Cheese Souffle

by Wander Woman on Apr.16, 2014, under Food & Cocktails

I have always wanted to make a soufflé.

There’s something so elegant about a dish that intimidates even the most experienced chefs, takes forever to prepare, poufs up like a hot air balloon, and is so light and airy, it hardly puts a dent in your appetite. It’s a snooty, uncooperative dish, and after making it for the first time, I’m smitten.

I made Jacques Pépin’s savory Herb and Goat Cheese Soufflé, because my manpartner gave me his cookbook as a second-tri pregnancy gift forever ago and I hadn’t yet made anything from it. And because finding ways to shove more goat cheese in my diet is a daily priority (at least it should be).

After whipping eggs, chopping herbs, melting butter and goat cheese, carefully folding in ingredients, and baking it in the oven, here’s my thought: Soufflés are really not that difficult. This dish was herbacious, cheesy and all-around stunning… but did it pouf the way it was supposed to? Was it too soft in the center?

I have no idea since this is my first experience with a soufflé. But the consensus at the table was that it tasted good. Really, really good.

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The East Side

by Wander Woman on Mar.21, 2014, under Food & Cocktails

There are too many awesomely cool industrial-chic bars on the east side of Austin. By “too many” I mean Can’t decide which to go to because they’re all so damn lovely.

This joint, East Side Show Room, is one of them.

I heard the owner of the place, a certified welder, crafted every funky lighting fixture and piece of furniture in the resto-bar. In fact, she opened the bar mainly as a vehicle to showcase her art.

The cocktails at ESSR are pitch-perfect (I had a Japanese whiskey with Strega and lemon… mmm) and the food, though I’ve never tried it, is pretty good too.

Check it out if you’re ever on East Sixth Street.

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Barbecue Pilgrimage

by Wander Woman on Mar.11, 2014, under Food & Cocktails

A weekend ago, we trekked to the hallowed grounds of Franklin BBQ—a divey Austin restaurant that has made every single “Best Of” list in every major food publication since the moment it opened two years ago.

To have the privilege of noshing on this spiritual barbecue, we had to wake super early on a Saturday morning and stand in line for 5 hours (which is totally cray, because I wouldn’t stand in line for more than an hour to meet dead Johnny Cash himself).

It was pretty much a big tailgating/drinking party all morning, and by the time you got to the front of line, it wouldn’t have mattered if they fed us Goodyear tires or melt-in-your-mouth brisket—whatever they gave us was bound to taste heavenly.

Objectively, this truly is mind-blowing barbecue…

And the Bourbon-Banana Pie was seriously tasty.

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Supper Club

by Wander Woman on Mar.04, 2014, under Food & Cocktails, Other Lovelies

My all-time fave food truck threw an uber lovely supper party in a vintage rental warehouse…

Hearty, elegant food and all-you-can-drink libations set amidst glowing candles, weathered wood and whimsical, swoony furniture.

Plus, a souvenir shot as a parting gift…

A dreamy and delicious night.

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Pie Lovin’

by Wander Woman on Feb.25, 2014, under Food & Cocktails

I’m not a pizza lover, but this pizza made me grinny.

It’s a simple pie: Bacon marmalade, mozzarella, gorgonzola, topped with a pile of arugula, carried on a doughy-crispy sourdough crust.

The little rustic pizza den that made this pie (and also a pretty incredible banana cream pie) is our neighbor in the country. I think evening jogs with a quick pie pitstop are in our future…

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Plated

by Wander Woman on Feb.04, 2014, under Food & Cocktails

Sometimes really neat things happen at work.

This was one of those times.

My work team and I masterminded a photo shoot for some new dishes and sauces our company chef created for clients. After painstakingly styling and capturing each dish, we got to devour every last (albeit cold) bite!

These are just the quick and dirty shots taken on my iPhone. The profesh ones are a thousand times better, of course.

I always thought it’d be bad-ass to work for a gourmet food magazine or in Bobby Flay’s test kitchen.

A couple times a year, I get my wish…

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Champagne Wishes and Caviar Dreams

by Wander Woman on Dec.19, 2013, under Food & Cocktails, Other Lovelies


We hosted a lil’ Christmas shindig this past weekend, and my lovely aunt-in-law made these deliciously pretty Butter and Jam Thumbprints…

They’re not very sweet and, instead, nutty and butter, making them idyllic served with morning coffee or as a colorful companion to cheese, crudités and other apps.

I’m not sure which recipe (she said it was a quick, easy recipe she found in the newspaper), but here’s a recipe for Butter and Jam Thumbprints.

And are you loving the sparkly holiday festivities? Wine-filled parties, an antlered- or your-own-version-of-cozy home, dreamy dresses, the buzz of merriment in the air…

Mmm, coveting this holiday dress featured on Song of Style...

And the food! My holiday ambition is to eat oysters and caviar before year’s end. Preferably together, if I can find such an indulgence in Austin, Texas…

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Cheese Crush

by Wander Woman on Dec.11, 2013, under Food & Cocktails

Trader Joe’s finally came to Austin, and it has dramatically, dreamily improved my life.

Like any Californian, TJ’s was a mainstay of my existence. How else does one entertain without the cheeses, tasty crackers and charcuterie so generously, affordably, offered by Trader’s? Saying goodbye to TJ’s was one of the hardest parts about moving to Texas two years ago.

But now TJ’s is back in my life, and I’m endless grateful to the powers that be for allowing us to reunite.

On a recent trip to this cheap, sexy store, I discovered a rich wild mushroom-tinged triple creme brie. You have to love the taste of mushrooms, obviously. It’s a winner…

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