Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Cooking From My Cookbooks - 30 Minute Vegan

My cookbook collection has gotten pretty large over the years. So big in fact, there are some books that never get much attention. I thought I'd roll a few goals into one ongoing project: cooking something from all of my cookbooks, eating healthier by greatly reducing my use of processed food and eating out less. I may be a big old food geek, but I'm pretty excited about it.

I'm starting off by going alphabetically, but who knows how it will go. The first book I opened up was The 30-Minute Vegan by Mark Reinfeld and Jennifer Murray. This book was a gift from my lovely friend Julie. She is one of the most thoughtful people. She never forgets a birthday or any other holiday for that matter. I need to cook for her more often for sure. I think this gift may have been her hint to me.

I've been a bit lazy and not wanting to heat up the kitchen, so anything that required turning on the oven was a big no! I had some fresh spinach in the crisper and a hankering for greens. Fred always loves pasta, but is a self proclaimed "red sauce guy", so I wasn't sure this would be his thing. I opted for the Pasta Florentine (page 221). It wasn't red sauce, but how can you turn down a dinner you didn't have to make? I am not a huge fan of faux cheeses, so I left out the mozzarella. I did however slice up and brown some of Julie Hasson's Italian Sausages that I had made last weekend. They were yummy on this fairly simple pasta dish. I think without them it may have been a little boring. But it was a nice filling and quick week night dinner.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Weekend Sunny Breakfast (or brunch if you like to sleep in)

When I go to the farmers market or the grocery store, I always go overboard buying fresh organic produce. I always have things on the edge (and sometimes over the edge) of going bad. I hate to waste produce. Last weekend was another one of those days. So I decided to make a very vegiful healthy breakfast.

I had a rainbow of fresh veggies. The heat is starting to stress my fresh herbs so I cut a bunch of them to sue as well. This colorful scramble is full of antioxidants and nutrients. Most of all it is full of fresh herb flavor. I recommend slicing, dicing and chopping before you get started cooking to make things go easy peasy. So if you wake up tomorrow morning and want the sun to shine in your mouth, this might just be the recipe for you! Feel free to sub veggies you need to use up in your fridge.

Sunny Day Rainbow Scramble

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup thinly sliced cremini mushrooms
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
1 small zucchini, quartered and thinly sliced
1 medium tomato, diced
2 cups kale, stems removed torn into bite sized pieces
1 tablespoon minced fresh sage leaves*
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary*
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme*
1/2 teaspoon tumeric
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 1/2 teaspoon Braggs liquide aminos or low sodium tamari
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
1-12 oz package extra firm tofu, water squeezed out

In a 12 inch iron skillet or non stick pan over medium heat add olive oil. Let warm for about 30 seconds. Add onion and garlic and sauté until onions are slightly softened, about 2-3 minutes. Add mushrooms and yellow bell pepper and sauté for about 3-4 more minutes until mushrooms start to release their liquid. Add zucchini, tomato and kale. Saute until kale is wilted, about 3-5 minutes. Add sage, rosemary and thyme. Saute until herbs start to become fragrant, about 30 seconds. Crumble tofu into vegetable mixture. Sprinkle with turmeric, nutritional yeast, Braggs, salt and pepper. Gently stir until well combined. Cook, stirring occasionally to make sure nothing burns to the bottom, until tofu is heated through, about 3 minutes. Serve immediately. This also reheats well.

*measured after mincing

Friday, July 4, 2014

4th of Jul-fry! Fry Me Up Some Dinnah!

I don't know what it is about holidays, but they always make me want to stuff my face with indulgent things I wouldn't often make. Today was no exception. While I was working I was very well behaved. I made a very healthy juice with farm fresh carrots, cucumbers and beets from the garden and some other alkalizing veggies. Then I signed off and all sensibility left me.

I had some really beautiful baby portobello mushrooms. Not the tiny ones that are all different shapes and sizes, but the bigger ones that were gorgeous and pretty uniform in size. I thought about stuffing them or maybe even just sautéing them with a little thyme, salt and pepper. Then something happened. My inner fried food demon popped out and it was on! I whipped up a quick batter, heated up some oil in my trusty skillet and made a quick sauce for dipping'

The mushrooms were meaty and gorgeous sticking out of the perfectly golden and crispy coating. I tried one dipping sauce that just wasn't doing those 'shrooms justice. I regrouped and came up with what I thing is the perfect compliment to my golden beauties. The hint of lemon and the sweet tarragon in the sauce paired beautifully with the earthy mushies and the slightly smoky crust. These were pretty darn quick to make too. I made so many and couldn't stop eating them. It ended up being my entire dinner. Hee hee.

Golden Beauty Fried Mushrooms with Cheater Béarnaise

I recommend making the sauce ahead of time to let the flavors develop.

12 large baby bella mushrooms, stems removed and reserved

3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup corn starch (Rapunzel's is GMO free)
1/3 cup panko bread crumbs
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup soy milk

Oil for frying (I used grape seed)

1 recipe Cheater Béarnaise (recipe below)

Add oil to iron skillet or other heavy bottomed skillet to a depth of at least 1 inch. Heat oil to 375.

Line a large plate with a paper bag topped with paper towels to drain mushrooms.

While oil is heating make batter. Add flour, corn starch, bread crumbs, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika and salt. Combine well. Whisk in soy milk until a fairly thick batter is formed. If batter seems too thick to coat the mushrooms, add a touch more soy milk.

Using a fork or a toothpick, dip the mushroom in batter and coat completely. Gently tap off excess. Carefully place mushroom into hot oil, using an additional fork to slide it gently off of the fork or pick into the oil. Repeat with each mushroom, cooking in batches. Make sure not to crowd the pan. Fry until golden on one side (about 3-5 minutes). Carefully turn over and fry for about 3 more minutes. Remove from oil and place on prepared plate to drain. These babies are very hot, so please let them cool for a bit lest you burn your poor tongue. Serve with Cheater Béarnaise.

Cheater Bearnaise

Makes 1/2 cup

1/2 cup Veganaisse or other vegan mayo
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon or 1/2 teaspoon fresh, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
Dash Tabasco

In a small bowl, stir all ingredients until well combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least and hour. Will last several days in the fridge.

Monday, June 23, 2014

A Cool Appetizer for the Hot Summer

Summer is in full force. It's that time of year when turning on the oven is much akin to shoving splinters under your nails. When the temps heat up, I crave cool and easy dishes.

The other night, I needed a quick and easy appetizer to take to a potluck after work. It was my first time bringing food to this group, so I wanted it to be impressive, but also follow my mood for keeping cool. We have started getting some really nice big cucumbers. I knew those had to be a part of the plan. I plunked around Pintrest and found some very cute cucumber appetizers. One of my favorites was a cucumber-hummus cupcake. But I felt with the heat, even hummus might not hold up.

Then I went to the pantry and fridge to see what I could see. I had a few left over fresh shiitake mushrooms that were about at the end of their viable life. The pantry had some soba noodles and that did it for me. I was inspired to make a cool, asian inspired, easy to eat with your hands appetizer.

Soba and Shiitake Cucumber Cups

4 large cucumbers (about 2-2 1/2 inches wide)

Dressing ingredients

1 tablespoon red miso
2 tablespoons brown rice vinegar
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon low sodium tamari or soy sauce
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated or finely minced

Filling ingredients

2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1/2 cup diced fresh shiitake mushrooms
1 red jalapeño or fresno pepper minced
1 tablespoon finely diced sweet onion
1 large clove garlic minced
4 oz. soba noodles, broken in half and cooked according to package directions*

Black and/or white sesame seeds for garnish
Thinly sliced green onion tops for garnish (optional)

*IMPORTANT NOTE: make sure to rinse noodles under very cold water until completely cooled or they will get very gummy.

Peel cucumbers. Score the cucumber lengthwise with a fork all the way around. Slice into inch slices keeping thickness as even as possible. Using a small melon baller or small paring knife, carefully scoop out most of the seeds and flesh of cucumber to create a little bowl. Make sure to leave a little cucumber on the bottom for the bowl. Place in a single layer on serving platter and set aside.

In a small bowl whisk dressing ingredients together and set aside.

In a 10 inch iron skillet or sauté pan over medium heat. Heat sesame oil until just warm and not smoking. Add shiitake mushrooms, jalapeños and onion. Saute until shiitake mushrooms are softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté until garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds. Remove from heat.

In a medium mixing bowl gently combine the chilled soba noodles, dressing and mushroom mixture.

Using a fork, twirl soba noodles to make a small and fairly tight "nest" of noodles**. Carefully place the "nest"inside the cucumber bowls. Repeat with remaining cucumber bowls and noodles.

Sprinkle each cute little bowl with sesame seeds and green onion for garnish. Serve immediately or they can be refrigerated for an hour or two before serving.

**NOTE: The mushroom mixture may fall out while twirling the noodles. Use a small spoon or your fingers to sprinkle some of the mixture on top of filled cucumbers.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Annual Chili and Beer War Submission for 2014

The 8th Annual Connell Chili and Beer War was yet another unqualified success. A great time was had by all. Every time I go, I make new friends and feel so welcome and happy. I told my lovely hostess this is one of those events where I sometimes lament about not eating meat. As I look around at all of the simmering creations in the crock pots, I am amazed at all of the creative culinary definitions of chili. My friend and hostess was so considerate. She made a vegan chile so that we could experience more than one of the entries. It was really awesome, chunks of hearty vegetables, beans and soooooo much flavor.

Mr. Host is a beer aficionado. He has probably done the beer tour at OC many times. He shared some fun brews with the crowd by serving tastings of several unique microbrews. I was pleasantly surprised by a pumpkin ale he offered. Nothing better than excellent beer with hot chile!

Our chili was pretty well received. The flavor was rich and smokey. When I discussed it with the prior year's champion (and third place winner this year), she suggested that while it had very good flavor, it needed more texture. I concur, so I made some slight adjustment in the recipe below to add beans for more texture.  I used the DePuy or French lentils because A) I had a small amount left in the pantry and B) they are the type of lentils that stay more firm when cooked for long periods of time. I love the smokiness of the paprika and chipotle in this. I hope you do to! This a a pretty spicy chili. If you are more delicate, reduce the amount of jalapeños by half and use a milder chile powder.

Smoky Red Hot Chili

1 cup french lentils (DePuy)
2 1/4 cup water
1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 large pasilla chile pepper, diced
3 medium jalapeños, minced
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon hot chile powder
1 tablespoon oregano
1/2 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1teaspoon chipotle powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegan brown or red ale beer
1-15 oz. can fired roasted crushed tomatoes
1-15 oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes
1-8 oz can El Pato Salsa de Chile Fresco
1-6 oz can tomato paste
3 cups vegetable broth
2 bay leaves
1 cup organic textured vegetable protein (TVP)
1 - 15 oz can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

In a medium sized saucepan add lentils and water. Bring to a boil. Turn heat to low and simmer for 25-35 minutes until lentils are tender (they will still be somewhat firm).

In a large stock pot over medium heat add oil then onions and fresh peppers. Saute until softened and onions are translucent, about 7-10 minutes. If mixture starts to stick, add a little water Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add chile powder, oregano, cocoa, smoked paprika, cumin, chipotle powder and salt. Sauté until just fragrant, about 1 minute. Deglaze with beer and simmer for about 2 more minutes. Add crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, El Pato, tomato paste, vegetable broth and bay leaves. Combine well. Stir in TVP and beans. Let simmer for at least and hour to let those flavors develop.

Serve with diced green onions and vegan sour cream if desired. Oh and corn bread is a natural for this chili!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Tonapah Rob's Vegetable Farm and Bonus Recipe

The one thing I love about having a blog is that you can really write about whatever you want and whatever you love. Sometimes I write about things I think other people will like, sometimes I find some cool new restaurant, ingredient or cooking technique. This post is about something that makes me feel good about so many things: clean local food, environmentally friendliness and just good people.

A couple of weeks ago Fred, some of our friends and I took a drive out to Tonapah Rob's Farm located about 50 miles outside of Phoenix. My dear friend Jackie (who is my kindred spirit when it comes to cooking awesome food) booked a tour of the farm for our little group. She knows how passionate I am about organic and truly natural food, so she knew this field trip would make me a little giddy.

We arrived early so we could by some of the super freshly picked, pesticide, herbicide and GMO free vegetables from Rob's farm stand. There were beautiful carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, fennel, greens, onions and more. After hanging out for a while, we were ready for the tour. Rob started this farm about 18 years ago. It was originally 5 acres, but he has been able to recently purchase 4 more acres. He is passionate about growing chemical free and in synch with the local climate and critters. He is an advocate of continual learning and teaching on the farm. Nature is an incredible teacher. Over the years he has learned how to work with everything from beneficial bugs to crop rotation to the typical wind patterns of the area.

As we toured the property, I noticed that he is also big into repurposing. He found an old abandoned washing machine which now served as a salad/greens spinner!

He has unique methods of composting. He showed us a new technique he has learned over the past few years (compost tea). He showed us a comparison of artichoke plants living near the compost tea run off and farther away. The plants getting the compost tea were huge! It was amazing as you can see below.

He has green houses where he starts many of his plants. Which brings me to another very important part of his method. All of his employees must be drug and tobacco free. He is adamant about this policy. He also insists that visitors to the farm stand that are smokers not tour the property. He doesn't do this to be a hard-core anti-smoking guy. He has lost crops to the quick spreading tobacco mosaic virus because someone he hired lied about their smoking habits.

Many of us have heard the claims from biotech companies that genetically modified and pesticide laden crops are the only way to feed the world. Apparently, they haven't met the likes of Tonapah Rob and his dedicated crew. His farm has a sizable CSA following and he brings a lot of produce to a few selected markets in Phoenix. He has produced well over 1500 pounds of produce in weekend before he expanded to 9 acres without genetically modifying or using any chemicals, so I am sure the yield is even higher now. I'm thrilled to see the success of his crops, his farm stand and his CSA. Below are some shots of the healthy plants growing. The cabbage heads were amazing!!!

Our little group had lots of questions as we all do some of our own organic gardening. Rob took extra time to answer our questions and to provide some great advice to help our gardens flourish. We were grateful for his time and knowledge.

His website has all the details on his CSA (which is a great deal), the markets where you can find his produce, the farm stand and a little history about Rob and the farm. The home page lists the upcoming week's food offereings. There are also some recipes in case you need ideas on how to use all of those spectacular veggies. Speaking of recipes, I created a recipe using the veggies I bought on my last trip to the farm. It's a nutrient rich and toothsome dish that is great for dinner or reheated for lunch. The fresh fennel gives the tempeh that "Italian sausage" flavor.

Wild Rice with Roasted Vegetables and Tempeh Sausage Crumbles

6 -8 servings as a side dish 4 main dish servings

1 cup wild rice, rinsed
3 cups vegetable broth

2 cups fresh cauliflower florets
2 cups fresh broccoli florets
4 oz. small whole cremini mushrooms (or large ones halved)
3 cloves garlic, crushed (do not mince, keep clove intact)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
pinch black pepper

8 oz. package non-gmo tempeh, crumbled
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cup fresh fennel, bulb only sliced thinly
1/2 cup sliced oil packed sun dried tomatoes (or rehydrated non-oil packed)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons tomato paste
3 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon Bragg's liquid amino or soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke.

Preheat oven to 375.

In a medium sized saucepan over med-high heat, add wild rice and broth. Bring mixture to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover pan and let simmer for 45-50 minutes until wild rice puffs open. Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes the fluff with fork.

While rice is cooking, prepare roasted vegetables and "sausage".

Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Place cauliflower, broccoli, mushrooms and garlic cloves on sheet. Sprinkle with paprika, salt and pepper. Add olive oil and toss to coat. Roast mixture for 15 minutes.

In large iron skillet or sauté pan over medium-low heat, sauté crumbled tempeh in olive oil until slightly browned, about 5-7 minutes. Add fresh fennel and sun-dried tomatoes and sauté until fennel is softened, about 10-15 minutes. If mixture becomes to dry, add a touch of water. Add crushed red pepper and salt. Saute for about 1 more minute. In a small bowl or measuring cup, combine tomato paste, water, Bragg's liquid amines and liquid smoke. Pour mixture into pan. Cook until liquid is gone and mixture is almost dry. Stir in cooked wild rice and roasted vegetables. Serve immediately.

NOTE: Reheats very well!

I have been eating lots of the veggies raw with some hummus as a snack too. Look how beautiful that purple cauliflower is!

Below is information on the Farm Stand and location of the farm (information directly from

Make sure to go to the website for more detailed information on the CSA. Going to the farm and taking the tour is a lot of fun for a group of people or a family…very educational.

Note to my vegan readers: the farm is not vegan.

Tonopah Rob’s Vegetable Farm

Address: 35838 W. Buckeye Rd.  Tonopah, AZ 85354
Market hours:  Open every Saturday from 8 to noon.  Summer hours: 7 to 11 a.m.  The farm stand opens November 2, 2013.
To visit Tonopah Rob’s Vegetable Farm and if you are coming from the Phoenix area:
The Farm Stand will open the first weekend of November 3, 2013.
  • Take Interstate 10 west to exit 103 – 339th Avenue
  • Turn left – heading south
  • Drive 1.9 miles
  • To Buckeye Road
  • Turn right – heading west
  • Drive 2.3 miles – you will pass through a stop sign at 355th Ave (about one half mile west of 355th Ave.)
  • Farm Stand is on the right – look for the big yellow sign
Address is: 35838 W. Buckeye Rd. Tonopah, Arizona
My farm is only about 30 minutes from the I-10 and 101 Loop intersection. Be careful following online mapping services including Google, Yahoo Maps, and Map quest as they often direct you to turn on Van Buren – this is a mistake that will have you on the wrong street with no easy access to my farm! Telephone: 623-386-3033

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Restaurant Review - Nosh Arizona

I hate to use trite phrases, but Nosh Arizona is truly a hidden neighborhood gem. The intimate space located just north of Ray Road on McClintock in Chandler,  is owned by husband and wife team Stacey and Mark Carson. Stacey, a 17 year restaurant industry veteran (she started out as a dishwasher and worked her way up) and certified chef, always dreamed of opening her own restaurant. Her dream was about to come true when the economy took it's plunge in 2008. She wisely decided the time was not right to open a restaurant. Instead of giving up on her dream, she enrolled in culinary school to gain even more valuable experience before opening the doors to Nosh in New Year's Eve 2012.

Stacey is a chef who demands quality in ingredients and presentations for all of the dishes at Nosh. The magic happens with her incredible culinary team. Chef Robert Perry, who developed his culinary chops at BLT Steakhouse, heads up the kitchen with a calm confidence. He and his crew: Jim, Ramon and Riley cook together like a well oiled machine. This can be challenging enough for a relatively new team, but they also have to perform in an open kitchen.

Which brings me to one of my favorite features of Nosh's space: the seating in front of the display kitchen. I love the option to watch the magic happen in the kitchen. The first time we sat there, I was truly impressed by the professionalism of the kitchen staff. Equally impressive is the cleanliness of the kitchen. The high back chairs in the front seating area are cozy, making you feel relaxed and calm. The brick walls lend a welcome rustic feel to the room.

I have been here several times with friends and with my honey. Each time we have been here, the service has been friendly, attentive and efficient. We are always welcomed by at least one employee as we walk through the door, even on busy nights. The servers we have had have been very knowledgable about the menu. If there is something they don't know, they will find a way to get you an answer.

Ah the menu and the food. This is my true love as you well know. The menu is relatively small, but there are some very tantalizing options for vegans and carnivores alike. To keep things interesting they change the menu about every three months.

It can be very challenging to find "foodie" grade vegan eats in the East Valley. I am thrilled to report that they do exist. While there are only a few items on the menu are inherently vegan (Side of Bread and Warm Olives), the chefs willingly and easily can "veganize" many of the dishes.

I have to stop for a minute and tell you that the bread and the pizza crust (both vegan) alone are worth the trip. The breads are Chef Stacey's original recipes. The are made fresh on site every day. They are probably one of the best (maybe even THE best) I have experienced. The toasted french bread is perfectly chewy on the outside and light on the inside. The pizza crust has the perfect amount of crunch and stays crispy even with the generous amount of toppings on the pizzettes.

Side of Bread may not sound like anything special, but when it is Nosh's bread, take notice. It comes with garlic and fresh herb infused olive oil dipping sauce. The fresh herbs make the difference. The infusion gives the olive oil incredible flavor. The simplicity and deliciousness of the dish took me back to some of my favorite gastronomical experiences in Spain.

The Bruschetta on the menu is not inherently vegan, but with a few tweaks by the chefs, we were able to enjoy the Bruschetta Trio. The version we had on our most recent visit was vegan AND gluten free by substituting the french bread with polenta triangles. The polenta had the firm texture to hold up to the toppings, but it did not have much flavor. It needed a little salt and pepper, maybe some garlic. I'm not sure, but it is certainly something that can be easily remedied. What I did love about their bruschetta is the toppings are piled high with delicious options. Our trio selections are described below:

  • Cauliflower and Sun Dried Tomato - I never used to be a huge fan of cauliflower, but I adore it roasted as it was for this topping. Sun dried tomatoes lend such a wonderful depth of flavor and I would have welcomed even more of them. 
  • Olive Tepanade with Capers - I'm a huge fan of olives and capers. I loved the piquant and salty tepanade with the mild polenta. 
  • Garlic with Yellow and Green Squash - The squash was bright, fresh and beautiful. The first bite I took of this selection seemed to lack flavor (a little more salt would have done the trick for bite number 1). However, the next bite included rich roasted garlic that turned it into something special. 

Word or warning: if you get the gluten free version on polenta, it may be tricky to pick it up with your hands. Forks may be required (small price to pay for delicious gluten free fare).

The Baked Pear Salad over Arugula normally comes with gorgonzola cheese. The vegan option obviously does not include this creamy component. Mixed field greens can be requested and I recommend this option for the vegan version. I love arugula, but in this case the chef's suggestion to substitute was right on. The acidic notes in the champagne vinaigrette were a perfect complement to the crunchy candied pecans and sweet creamy pear. I could have eaten a bowl of the pecans all by themselves, they were that good.

We couldn't go without having one of Nosh's "pizzettes". It is their answer to the popular flatbread craze. We were not disappointed! We had the Vegetarian, hold the cheese. They use grilled seasonal vegetables on top of a tomatoey pizza sauce all served up on the incredible pizza dough. The pizza is presented on a wooden cutting board. I particularly loved the portobello mushrooms. The marinade made their flavor pop. The veggies were so plentiful, it was hard to keep them on the pizza. So often when we order pizza with a lot of veggie toppings, the crust turns into a white hot mushy mess. Not so with this one. We were chatting it up with the chefs, so the last couple of pieces actually sat there for quite a while before we finally ate them.  The crust was crisply until the end. 

The new menu just came out this month. They offer a Taro Taco Trio. The Chimi Vegetable taco is vegan! We didn't get to try it, but plan to in the near future. 

I do want to mention the portion sizes. So many restaurants deliver monster sized portions of mediocre food and processed foods. They don't call our way of eating the SAD (standard American diet) for nothing. Nosh's portions are not gigantic. I found them to be just right in size. Their prices are in line with the quality and similar establishments (wine bars and upscale pubs). 

I'm sad to report that at the current time there are no vegan dessert offerings. The good news is, Mark makes all of their ice creams and he is looking into developing some vegan options. Yay! We honestly couldn't have fit one in on our most recent visit anyway as we had so many courses. 

Speaking of Mark, he is the creative force behind the bar. Mark crafts a crazy array of specialty cocktails. He is also a winemaker. The restaurant features two of his hand crafted wines on the menu. Look for the Hugo name on the list and you will find his creations. He makes one white and one red each year (somewhere between 120 and 150 gallons). Most of the grapes he uses in his wines are from the Napa Valley region of California. He started making wine about 10 years ago from kits he purchased online. Over the years he has learned a lot about the art from other wine makers. We didn't have room or time to imbibe in any adult beverages this trip, but we intend to make a point of leaving room on our next visit. The wine list is not huge, but there is a good variety. They also serve over 25 craft beers and the selections change periodically, so you can try all sorts of different styles.

Nosh is a breath of fresh air in the corporate chain and sports bar saturated Chandler/Tempe area. It is so great to have a cute, independently owned hang out in the neighborhood. It is even better that the food is so delicious. Make sure you stop by and get a seat by the kitchen! 

Nosh Arizona
4080 W Ray Rd #26
Chandler AZ 85226
(480) 838-NOSH or (480) 838-6674
Monday            Closed
Tuesday           4pm to 10pm - Special 1/2 price beer
Wednesday     4pm to 10pm - Special 1/2 price wine bottles and Sangria
Thursday        4pm to 10pm - Special Free Glass Nosh Select Wine w/Entree
Friday (Lunch/Dinner) 11am to 11pm - 1/2 price dessert after 9pm
Saturday          4pm to 11pm - 1/2 price dessert after 9pm 
Sunday (Brunch) 9am to 2pm - Featuring $2.00 Mimosas and Bloody Mary bar.