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Video: November 2018 Recipes

To prepare you for Thanksgiving, we tried out cranberry sauce recipes, a roasted veggie side dish (but we’re bougie and gay so we turned it into an appetizer), and the cover recipe, Pumpkin Bread Trifle. Recipes from the November 2018 issue of Better Homes & Gardens. Rob’s signature cocktail is a cranberry orange bourbon smash. Chef Tim checks in from Provincetown with his comments. Basically, one of these recipes is a MUST-DO for Thanksgiving! Listen to the full November episode for more Turkey Day fun. Music: Bensound.com.

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The November 2018 Episode

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In our November 2018 episode, we switch things up and hang out at J’s house, where green is a neutral. We tried hard but we could not find many tags for hate in this issue of Better Homes & Gardens magazine! Maybe it’s because we both love Thanksgiving so much. Maybe it’s because the issue was mostly about the food (though we did do a fun recipe tasting at J’s house–watch it soon on this site)! Never fear, we managed to find plenty to talk about: more white walls and big art, pumpkins of all sizes and shapes (#phrasing), trends we actually like for once, and dramatic facelifts (the furniture kind, not ours). But how will Rob, aka Mr. Tablescape, react to the big tablescaping how-to feature? Make sure to listen all the way through for a special announcement about our first-ever LIVE event! Signature cocktail: a bourbon orange-cran smash. Recipe prep by Chef Tim Lawton and J. Dewey. Music by Bensound.com.

Cranberry pear quince sauce toasts
Here’s J.’s version of the cranberry pear quince sauce…made with guava paste instead of quince paste. He turned it into an appetizer by toasting baguette slices and spreading on a layer of cream cheese and goat cheese.

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J. also tried turning Carla Hall’s roasted vegetables into an appetizer too.

bourbon cocktails and cranberry sauce
Rob’s bourbon orange cran smash cocktails, made with some of Chef Tim’s cranberry sauce (made correctly with quince paste, unlike J’s).

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Chef Tim tried the cover recipe: pumpkin bread trifle.

Pumpkin bread trifle
Pumpkin bread trifle with bourbon whipped cream. To die for! Tim skipped the pomegranate arils but did make candied pecans.

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Yum.

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Video: October 2018 Recipe Tastings

This month we sample paella, delicata squash rings with an herb buttermilk dip, scones, and poached pears–plus our signature cocktail, of course!

Chef Tim got busy (especially for a Thursday night) with four recipes from the October 2018 issue of Better Homes & Gardens: the delicata squash rings with an herb buttermilk dip, chicken and pork paella, poached pears, and classic scones. Rob paired these with a new cocktail, which we’ve dubbed a Pum-mosa: cava (Freixenet in this case, because it’s easy to find) and Roundhouse Pumpkin King Cordial. It’s an autumnal take on a mimosa…but it’s also very similar to hard cider. So if you’re a fan on that…

Watch and see our reactions to each dish, and stay for the playful banter between Chef Tim and cohost Rob.

Recipe prep: Tim Lawton. Squash from Clarke’s Family Farm. Camerawork by Michael Hall. Edited by J. Dewey. All music by Bensound.com.

 

 

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Video: September 2018 Recipe Tasting

Could Be Better’s Rob Conlon and J. Dewey sample the coconut-chia oat crisp recipe from the September 2018 issue of Better Homes & Gardens magazine, and Rob creates a signature cocktail inspired by the global flavors and colors throughout the issue and the special feature about chocolate.

If you don’t have the magazine, you can find the recipe on the BHG website here.

Once again, Tim Lawton did an excellent job with the recipe. He also tried the French chocolate mousse recipe, but we seriously think there was something off about that recipe because it didn’t turn out quite like we all thought it would. We may try it again and see how we can do better.

Camerawork by Michael Hall. Music by Bensound.com.

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Video: Our August 2018 Recipe Testing

A new video episode is here! We test out recipes from the August 2018 issue of Better Homes & Gardens magazine. Our signature cocktail for the month is a Salty Be-otch, Rob’s inspired take on a Salty Dog. Join us for all the fun on our August 2018 episode, now available on the Could Be Better Podcast feed or here on CouldBeBetterPodcast.com. Recipe prep by Tim Lawton, Music by Bensound.com. Peaches provided by Clarke’s Family Farm.

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August Recipe Tasting

Summer foods are all about fresh fruits and vegetables and the August issue of BH&G is full of fresh-from-the-farm recipes. Before our podcast taping, Chef Tim whipped up three iterations of inspired creations from the magazine’s pages.

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Top: Spinach Dutch Baby. Middle: chilled corn soup. Bottom: crostini topped with gruyere and garlic-onion jam.

First up: quick garlic-onion jam served on toasts with gruyere cheese for some contrast. Tim said it was incredibly easy and his favorite thing this session. How else can you use it, besides on these appetizers? We quickly decided it could be used almost anywhere–on burgers, BLTs, other sandwiches, a roast beef and horseradish French dip…it’s a very versatile (power vers!) condiment.

Next: a chilled corn soup topped with lots of mix-ins: feta, more corn, lemon zest, dill. We both agreed that it’s light, summery and would make a perfect cocktail shooter soup. It’s made with yogurt, not cream, so it’s not as heavy as you would expect, and not as overtly corny as imagined, either. Tim served it in the family’s vintage Currier & Ives china bowls but the blue-and-white pattern works perfectly for a summer’s afternoon.

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Chef Tim plating our Spinach Dutch Baby through the pass-through window. What service!

Tim whipped up a last-minute addition: the Spinach Dutch Baby. This is also a fairly simple recipe, with an egg dough pancake cradling fresh spinach and farmer’s market tomatoes. It would make a wonderful weekend lunch with a salad, or even a light weeknight dinner. Plus it looks impressive (it’s a grower) enough to serve to company.

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The Salty Be-otch: peach puree, rosemary simple syrup, Tito’s, a pink Hawaiian sea salt rim, and rosemary for garnish.

As for our signature cocktail, the magazine left us thirsty (only one beverage recipe–for iced tea, and iced tea cocktails are so 2010) so Rob invented something original: a take on a Salty Dog. He swapped in a fresh peach puree (made from fruits provided by Clarkes Family Farm) for the customary grapefruit, and called it a Salty Be-otch. A rosemary-infused simple syrup melded nicely with a scoop of peach sorbet, and plenty of Tito’s Vodka gave it a kick. J. licked off his salty rim job right away but others in the group said that you can take or leave the salt rim (Rob used pink Hawaiian sea salt for color).

Check out our YouTube channel for videos of these tastings and tune in to our August podcast episode coming soon!