Tea tasting anyone?

I’ve been a bad girl – blogging from work in the morning!  Well I upload the pictures at home and then write a little somethin’ somethin’ here at work.  Hope you guys aren’t too bored!  I’m not very clever before my morning coffee 😉

Speaking of coffee… well, tea actually.  Tina was nice enough to email me and let me know about a Tea Tasting and Pairings Event that Starbucks is hosting for all media/bloggers here in Boston.  They originally were going to host it at 11am on January 29th (a Thursday) but I think they may switch it to a brunch spot so maybe an noon on January 31st (Saturday).  It will be held at 755 Boylston St.  Do any of you Boston bloggers want to join me for this?  I would love to meet some of you in person!!  Please let me know if any of you plan on going… I’m being shy and don’t want to go by myself. :)

Onto food… this is going to be quick!


It’s really a tie between an awesome risotto and no pudge brownies with dried cherries (I just added about 1/2 cup into the batter).  I had 2 of these babies as they came out of the oven.  I wanted even more but got a hold of myself :)

No pudge brownie with dried cherries

Now the risotto with porcini mushrooms and mascarpone… I came across this recipe on Kelly’s The Pink Apron blog and it sounded right up my alley.  I immediately put it on my to-make list and last night was the night to execute this beauty.  Risottos are a little work intensive because you have to constantly stir them to make them creamy.  Also, for some reason, mine always take more broth that the recipe calls for (like double!) so it takes that much longer.  The result, though, was well worth it!  It was absolutely incredible!!  My serving (I went back for a little more after finishing this):

risotto with porcini mushrooms and mascarpone

A few modifications on my part… I used vegetable broth instead of beef, because we had a box open.  I think beef would be really nice here, though, so when I make it again I’ll use beef.  Also as mentioned I used like double the broth (just keep adding 1/2 cup at a time until it’s nice and creamy… read: not crunchy).  Lastly I didn’t use shallots, because of my onion aversion 😀  Last comment on this: Cooking Light nutritional info says a serving is under 200 calories, but that’s definitely wrong.  I did a quick and dirty calculation and it’s at least 280.  Still amazing for such an indulgent tasting dish!  Oh, and the mascarpone is really key here.  It instantly made this risotto super creamy! 


Kashi heart 2 heart waffles with 1/2 banana + barney butter

hummus/turkey/cucumber/mustard sandwich + yellow carrots & 1 orange

sandwich closeup

Mojo mountain mix bar

Total calories for the day: 1475


I took a great Stability Ball class (bootcamp type class, using the bosu, stability ball and medicine balls) and then finished off with another 30 minutes on the elliptical.  I think I finally stretched all those muscles!! 😀

Off to work!  “See” you later 😉

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16 comments to Tea tasting anyone?

  • wow, I dunno dried cherry no-pudge brownies sounded amazing, but then I saw your risotto – which looks amazing by the way! I never try to make it at home since it is so labor-intensive. I also love your banana-waffle sammie =) If I was from the Boston area, I would have loved to come along with you to your tea party – but its a long hike from DC, haha. have a great day!

  • i’ve never tried risotto cause they always make it seem so hard on tv…but it looks delicious

  • Katie

    I would definitely do a tea tasting with you but Mike and I will be in NYC that weekend – boo! Let me know how it is…

  • K

    Cute waffle-wich!! If I were in Boston I’d so join you :(

  • Oh no, I wish I was in Boston for the tea event! I love tea!!
    Anyways, great eats like always!
    Brownies.. mmmm

  • Elina I may be going to NY that weekend but if I’m not I would love to join you for the tea tasting! It’d be great to meet you and that sounds like something really fun to do! I’ll let you know closer to the time- is it something you have to sign up for in advance?

    ps- everytime i read your blog my mouth waters- all your eats look so delicious!

  • Elina

    Sounds like next weekend is a popular one to go to NY 😉

    Inna, I think they are trying to gage how many people will show up, so please email Bjorn at Bjorn.Trowery@edelman.com if you can make it. Hope to see you there!

  • sister inna

    mmm where can i get risotto for lunch? why do you always do this to me
    i want some yum yum yum

  • wow, so many great lookin eats!

    i’d totally be in for the tea tasting, shoot me an email tri2cook [at] blogspot [dot] com if you want to meet up or whatnot. i’m also doing this from work and will try to remember to come back here for the details…

  • I’ve come to the definitive conclusion that the way to go with the No Pudge is definitely making the whole batch at once. I’m assuming that is what you did, because yours actually look like delicious brownies and when I tried the individual portion it got rubbery and weird. Also do you use plain nonfat yogurt or vanilla? Any other tips or tricks are welcome, I think I’m going to use the rest of my box up in one batch!
    Everything today looks amazing but the breakfast-waffle sandwich is staring at me!!

  • Elina

    Hehe, you guys are lucky I didn’t include close-ups of the waffle sandwich. I was drooling over the pics myself but decided to spare you 😉

    Lara, I definitely think that making the No Pudge brownies all in one batch is the way to go! This time I used the same yogurt I usually eat (TJ’s nonfat european style yogurt) but I’ve used other plain or vanilla nonfat yogurts in the past and they always came out delicious. If I use plain yogurt then I always add a tsp of vanilla (like the box recommends). I even used greek yogurt a few times and they were still good, although I think a bit different in texture. They are harder to mix if you use the thicker yogurts so I went back to using regular ones. The one downside to making a whole batch is that you may eat more than one (like I did last night and today already) but they are so good (and not that bad for you) that it’s totally worth it, I think! :)

  • Great eats today! Yummy no pudge brownie and risotto! I love that Mountain Mix bar!

  • Your blogger event at Starbucks sounds so fun! Wish I were there. 😀

  • Elina- I forgot to tell you but 75 Chestnut has a cool event I was thinking of trying out if you want to do it with me. On Tuesday nights they’re doing this cookie night thing that sounds really cool- basically they’re looking for “the best cookie recipe ever.” They do cookie tastings and then if you have a cookie recipe you like they tell you to bring it in and they’ll put it to the test and make it for you to taste! How cool does that sound? Plus the best recipe they say will win a dinner for two at the restaurant! Interested?

  • Elina

    Oh I totally forgot about their cookie tasting… now I remember from the Phantom Gourmet. I don’t have any great cookie recipes but I’d love to go try/eat cookies! :) Yes, let’s set up a date sometime in the future. 😀

  • […] 1/2 tablespoon of mascarpone (because it worked beautifully in the mushroom/mascarpone risotto I made a few weeks ago).  The oats took only 2 cups of broth to get super creamy.  This recipe is another winner!  Oh, […]


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