in my cupboard: burrata cheese

Burrata cheese is quickly rising to the top of my “Favorite Cheese List” – and I mean quickly. This was only my third time having it, which may seem a bit premature but it is deeeelish! My first experience was at Mozza Mia and then most recently at my cousins house in LA. I’m obsessed.

Burrata is a fresh Italian cheese, made from mozzarella and cream. The outer shell is solid mozzarella while the inside contains both mozzarella and cream, giving it an unusual, soft texture. It is usually served fresh, at room temperature. The name “burrata” means “buttered” in Italian.  (Source)

It’s creamy, soft and totally melts in your mouth. Simple is best – some olive oil, sea salt and cracked pepper with toasted crostini is all it really needs. I served it alongside some Italian cured meats as well.

I tried two versions – a $5 Trader Joe’s version and a $15 version from Surdyk’s (local cheese shop) and I really think it is worth the extra $10 – so buy high quality if available. With that said the TJ’s Burrata was very good as well so it is a great choice for budget shoppers. They were also a bit different. The Trader Joe’s Burrata had a formed outer shell, with a soft, runny center (doesn’t it look like a poached egg?) and the other version was very soft throughout, and didn’t have two separate textures.

tijuana dogs

Every spring I get these bizarre cravings for hot dogs. I’m not sure if it is the constant grilling fumes, wafting into our apartment or the constant Brewers that grace our computers during the summer. (I swear the Brewers play 7 games a week.) Baseball = hot dogs, right?

I say bizarre because hot dogs just really aren’t my thing. But for some reason I’ve got to have at least one a year. I won’t settle for a plain hot dog though – last year we topped our dogs with peppers, tomatoes, cabbage, etc but this year I opted for something a little different. The ever-popular Tijuana Dog. Tijuana Dogs are typically wrapped in bacon and then topped with a variety of toppings, similar to what you would see on a taco. I know that bacon-wrapped hot dogs sounds ridiculously un-healthy but in reality, the bacon adds 35 calories. I can handle that. :)

I even went so far as to make my own buns. They didn’t turn out (operator error of the mixer, no fault to the recipe) so I ate mine sans bun, but to be honest, I’m not a huge bun fan so I was happy with dog + toppings.

I loved this twist on hot dogs – I might even have to fit them into the menu again this summer.

Tijuana Dogs - 4 servings – inspired by Serious Eats

  • 4 hot dogs (kosher or grass-fed beef are best in my mind)
  • 4 slices bacon
  • 4 hot dog buns (I made my own from Annie’s Eats recipe)
  • toppings: caramelized onions, tomatoes, pickled jalapenos, queso fresca

Wrap hot dogs with bacon on the diagonal, overlapping if necessary.

Grill until bacon is cooked through.

Prepare toppings and top as desired!