Easy Make-Ahead Margaritas

Easy Margaritas - Mediterranean Baby (6)

My mom loves a classic, frozen, salted margarita.  So, in honor of her upcoming birthday, I wanted to post these easy make-ahead margaritas to help everyone get ready for warm weather and outdoor happy hours at last! I played around with this recipe after studying ingredient lists for other margarita recipes all over the web.  Once I figured out which flavor combos I liked, it was all a matter of portions.  (Personally, I can’t stand how sweet and artificial the store-bought margarita mixes taste.)

The end result will yield you a little over 4 cups of homemade margarita mix that you can make well in advance of your get together and either serve on the rocks or crush with ice in a blender.  That may not sound like a lot, but the recipe is mostly alcohol, so a little bit of these can go a long way (wink, wink, Grammy Lobaugh).  Plus, you can easily double or triple the recipe for larger parties.  For a party of four adults, figuring each person will imbibe roughly 2 drinks, you’re covered with this recipe. Cheers!

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Food Revolution Day 2014

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Mediterraneanbaby supports Food Revolution Pittsburgh Cooking Club

I wanted to introduce this fantastic program the great people at Bar Marco connected me with- The 2nd Annual Food Revolution Day Pittsburgh is happening on May 16 at Obama Academy for International Studies.

Food Revolution Day is a global day of action for people to make a stand for good food and essential cooking skills. It’s a chance for people to come together within their homes, schools, workplaces and communities to cook and share their kitchen skills, food knowledge and resources. Food Revolution Day aims to raise awareness about the importance of good food and better food education for everyone by focusing on three simple actions – cook it, share it, live it. (more…)

Vegetable Lasagna

Vegetable Lasagna - Mediterranean Baby (9)

This vegetable lasagna is hearty and satisfying when you’re trying to bypass meat in your Mediterranean diet.   It’s full of veggies like zucchini, squash, red bell peppers, and mushrooms and still pays homage to the melted cheeses we love in traditional lasagna.  My whole family loves this recipe and it’s a great way to get my little ones to eat their vegetables!! (more…)

Koulourakia: Greek Easter Cookies

Koulourakia - Greek Easter Cookies - Mediterranean Baby (17)

This recipe for Greek Easter Cookies, or Koulourakia as we call them in Greek, comes from my Thea (aunt) Aleka’s kitchen.   Among her many talents, Thea Aleka is the most talented baker.  She is always inventing and reinventing family recipes from her birthplace in Zakynthos, Greece. (more…)

Review: Bar Marco, Pittsburgh

bar marco logoWe had the opportunity to dine at Bar Marco’s Wine Room a few weekends ago.  It was an absolute treat! Not only was the wine room private and secluded, but it was the most personal dining experience I’ve ever had in Pittsburgh.  The Wine Room seats only ten people, tickets must be purchased in advance, and the menu is created specifically for each seating.  Nestled deep in the heart of the Strip District of Pittsburgh, this treasure is complete only because of its talented, innovative Chef Jamilka Borges and her lovely, informative, and well versed wine director, Sarah Thomas, who both walk you through the pairings of the evening.

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Easy Roasted Artichokes

Easy Roasted Artichokes - Mediterranean Baby (24)

There are few foods I love more than artichokes.  Each year, as we draw nearer to Easter, I try to find new ways to enjoy them.   Over the past year, I have also made Fried Artichoke Hearts and Baked Artichokes w/Lemon Sauce. This year, I simply roasted them with fresh garlic cloves stuffed into the leaves.  I also drizzled white wine and olive oil over the tops with a sprinkle of sea salt.  As a finishing touch, I added a slice of Meyer lemon on each artichoke, wrapped them in foil, and roasted them for  90 minutes.  This is the easiest way I’ve ever prepared artichokes, but they were still just as delicious!    (more…)

Slow Cooker Three Pepper Tortellini Soup

Three Pepper Tortellini Soup - Mediterranean Baby (11)

I used the stock reserved from my Corned Beef recipe for this Three Pepper Tortellini Soup and it was super flavorful.  I’m sure it would be equally as good using any other stock you have in your pantry, but it felt good not to waste that great corned beef stock.  In any event, this soup is chalk full of veggies.  From yellow, green, and red bell peppers to zucchini and corn, this is a veggie lovers delight.  Although I added ground meat to my version, you certainly don’t have to do so.  In fact, you could omit the meat and use veggie stock, making the perfect vegetarian soup!  Enjoy! (more…)

Corned Beef and Uncle Pete’s HOT Mustard

Corned Beef and Hot Mustard - Mediterranean Baby (36)

Growing up, one of my favorite meals was my Thea (aunt) Jeane’s Corned Beef.  Albeit a far cry from our usual Mediterranean fare, variety is the spice of life!  My Thea made it as a homage to my Uncle Pete’s Irish heritage and he always accompanied it with his original hot mustard.  As a kid, just catching a whiff of the mustard would make my eyes water, but to my Uncle, retired from the U.S. Air Force, it was nothing.  That being said, the mustard is of course, optional with this recipe.  :)

This is the perfect family meal and makes plenty of leftovers for corned beef sandwiches the next day!

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