1 08 2013

My work wife Emily and I went to a hip SF Mission restaurant this week. It’s called Commonwealth. We did the Chef’s Tasting Menu. We didn’t regret it.

View from the front.

Tasting menu.

Kettle chips with seaweed and malt vinegar dipping foam.

Poached salmon.

Salad wreath.


Prosciutto-wrapped Melon

1 08 2013


No… this isn’t that amazingly creative.  Nor does it take that much work.  But if you want to show up to a party and have everybody rave, make this.  But here’s the catch… you need to use Italian cantaloupe.  It’s not hard to find anymore, and it can be named Tuscan.  But the sweetness puts that old traditional cantaloupe to shame.


You can either dice the cantaloupe like I have done, or just leave in big slices.  I prefer a high proscuitto-to-cantaloupe ratio,




I’m Back!!

19 01 2011

Remember me??  It’s been over a year since I updated this crazy thing… and then when I went back a few months ago my Domain (url address) was gone!!  I was so busy with work that I ignored it and figured I’d make it happen later.  Well now is later.  And all I had to do was give WordPress $12 and it was back up.

So… I’ve been working a new job this past year and have had the chance to travel the world eating great foods.  But since I was so distracted with work, I never wrote about it.  Luckily I’m going on the same world tour again this year.  What does that mean????

World Foods!!!!!  I am very excited to eat and write about it.

So stay tuned.  I’ll be back shortly with some great stories, great foods, and great pictures.



Will – January 2011

Caramelized Onion and Sausage Pizza

16 09 2009


Hey everyone, remember me?  For those that didn’t know… I moved back to San Francisco the last few weeks.  I loved Austin of course, but San Francisco is my home and I’m glad to be back.  So to celebrate, I made an amazing pizza!

The first time I tried a carmelized onion pizza was when I was in Rome.  It was so simple… just a crisp crust and sweet onions.  That was it.  And I couldn’t get enough of it.  So I finally decided to try my hand at it.  I was in for a surprise though.  To carmelize the onions took much longer than I thought….


I started with three very large onions.


Cut the onions into half-rings.


Sauté the onions in a big pot with olive oil.


Keep cooking the onions until they take on a brown color. And become thick.


And then keep cooking at a low heat until the onions dry out and get really caramelized and sweet.  It takes a LONG time!  Like 40 minutes or longer.


I decided it would be good to add some spicy sausage to my pizza too.


For the dough… dissolve yeast in warm water and sugar.


Add flour…


Use a dough hook to knead the dough.  It’s much easier than doing it by hand.


And finally… I added a balsamic vinegar reduction to the top of the pizza.  It’s really easy to make, but it will make your kitchen STINK!  So open the windows and doors.


You can eat the pizza with or without arugula on top.

Caramelized Onion and Sausage Pizza

Serves 8


3 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

3 large onions. thinly sliced

Salt and pepper

2 teaspoons sugar

1 lb spicy Italian sausage

1 c balsamic vinegar

8 oz buffalo mozzarella (sliced)

3 c arugula


1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast

1 cup warm water

2 cups bread flour

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons white sugar


  1. In a large skillet, melt the butter in the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper, and cook, stirring constantly, until the onions begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in the sugar and cook, scraping the browned bits off the bottom of the pan frequently, until the onions are golden brown, about 20 minutes.
  3. While onions are cooking, brown sausage in a shallow frying pan.
  4. Cook balsamic vinegar on med-high in small saucepan until reduced by half of volume.
  5. Pizza Dough: In a mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
  6. Add 2 cups bread flour, olive oil, salt, white sugar to the yeast mixture; blend with paddle attachment to combine.
  7. Replace paddle attachment with dough hook and beat well until a stiff dough has formed. Cover and rise until doubled in volume, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  8. Turn dough out onto a well floured surface. Form dough into a round and roll out into a pizza crust shape.
  9. Add caramelized onions, sausage, and sliced mozzarella to the top of pizza.
  10. Cook in oven for approximately 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and crust is brown.
  11. Top pizza with arugula and drizzle balsamic reduction over pizza.

Fresh Raspberry Ice Cream

12 08 2009


Being a boy from Utah, there are a few things that spell summer to me.  1) The 4th of July’s Stadium of Fire in Provo (which always includes at least one Osmond), 2) a hike to Donut Falls in Millcreek canyon, 3) camping in the Uinta mountains, and 4) fresh raspberry ice cream and shakes in Bear Lake.  So, when I got my new Kitchen Aid Ice Cream Attachment (so freaking excited) I knew raspberry ice cream had to be the maiden voyage.


Ice cream is actually pretty simple to make.  Milk, cream, eggs, sugar.  Done!  Then you can add some flavor… or just vanilla.


For me though, the secret to great ice cream is to make a custard out of the eggs.  Some people either use raw eggs, or omit them all together.  But to me, there are few things more delicious than an egg custard.  It just creates this rich full flavor that makes it so French!

All you do is heat the milk and cream.


Add egg yolks to a mixing bowl.


Add sugar and beat the yolks until they are light yellow.  And add the hot milk/cream slowly while the egg/sugar mixture is beating.  Return to the pan and heat until thick.


Strain to remove any cooked egg yolk.  And there, you’re done.  You’ve just made an egg custard.  It’s so simple and really good.

Then you are ready to add your flavoring…


I… of course chose fresh raspberries.


Just throw them into a food processer, make a puree…


You can add raspberry flavor (I chose Framboise)… or vanilla.  NOTE: Framboise is a liqueur but has the same alcohol amount as vanilla.  So… if you only use 2 teaspoons of Framboise, it’s basically the same alcohol content as using 2 teaspoons of vanilla.  That’s my justification. 🙂


Strain the puree through a fine mesh sieve to get out all the seeds.


Crush a small amount with a fork so you can have a few chunks in your ice cream…


Add your egg custard to the puree and chill until very cold…


Then add to the ice cream maker until it’s thick and ice creamy.  This one takes a bit of time, but if you have kids they will LOVE doing this with you.  Don’t forget to add the fresh raspberry chunks during the final 1-2 minutes of freezing or you’ll have frozen raspberries gumming up your paddles.

This is SO GOOD and tastes fresh and light (even though it’s technically not light at all).

Fresh Raspberry Ice Cream

Serves 16


2 1/2 c half-and-half

8 egg yolks

1 c sugar

2 1/2 c whipping cream

1/8 t salt

3 pints fresh raspberries

2 t Framboise


  1. In medium saucepan, heat half-and-half until very hot but not boiling, stirring often.  Remove from heat; set aside.
  2. Place egg yolks and sugar in mixer bowl.  Mix about 2 minutes until well blended and slightly thickened.
  3. Gradually add hot half-and-half until blended.  Return mixture to saucepan and cook over medium heat until small bubbles form around edge and mixture is steamy stirring constantly.  Take off heat and transfer to large bowl stirring in whipping cream and salt.
  4. Add 2 1/2 pints of raspberries (reserving 1/2 pint in a bowl) and Framboise to a food processor.  Pulse until berries are completely pureed.
  5. Strain puree through a fine mesh strainer.  Add to milk mixture to create your ice cream base.
  6. Place ice cream base in refrigerator and chill overnight (8 hours).
  7. Freeze according to ice cream maker instructions.
  8. Mash remaining raspberries in bowl.  Add to ice cream maker 1-2 minutes before freezing is complete.

Good luck and good eating!

Sun Dried Tomato Pesto

30 07 2009


I had some friends over the other night for dinner.  I was tired of offering everyone my traditional appetizer… cheese and crackers.  So I peered into my fridge and found some sun dried tomatoes that I’d used for cous cous a few weeks ago.  I thought I’d try my hand at pesto.


The problem is I only had a few ingredients handy.  I was missing pine nuts and basil.  But I thought I’d try it anyway and see how it turned out.  The secret to pesto is creating a thick emulsion with olive oil.  Normally you create this with basil and pine nuts, garlic, and cheese, then in a food processer you slowly add olive oil until it’s thick.  In this case I used sun dried tomatoes, Parmigiano Reggiano, garlic, and olive oil.  That’s it!


Cut up a french baguette, brush with olive oil, and cook in a 350-degree oven until toasted (about 5 minutes on each side).  Make sure you set a timer so it doesn’t burn.


The final product is delicious and garlicy.  And the sun dried tomatoes are concentrated, so it has a very sweet flavor.  It’s easy and delicious.

Sun Dried Tomato Pesto

Serves 8


8-10 sun dried tomatoes

3 cloves of garlic

4-6 oz Parmigiano Reggiano

1/2 c olive oil

1/2 t cayenne pepper (optional)

1 loaf French baguette


  1. Place Parmigiano Reggiano in chunks into food processer and pulse until the cheese resembles small crumbs.
  2. Add sun dried tomatoes and peeled garlic to the food processer and pulse until finely chopped.
  3. Pour olive oil in thin stream from top of food processer while running.
  4. Slice up baguette in 1/2-inch pieces. Brush top and bottom of bread slices with olive oil.
  5. In 350-degree oven, toast bread until crispy.
  6. Serve in dipping bowl, or spread pesto on each toast individually.

New Blog Name

17 07 2009

I’m getting even more and more into my blog.  So, I decided it’s time to invest in a URL.  Sadly, Social Food is already taken and would have cost me over $3000 to buy it.  And not be available for three years!!  

So, I decided that since my last name is pretty clever, I’d play off that… and get my own URL.

So welcome to the all new…

Spendlove on Food (  

It’s a little play on words since I’ll be talking about foods, and spending my love on food too.  Clever, eh?

I’ll be cooking tomorrow and so will have some great recipes to share in the next few days.

Good luck and good cooking!


Spendlove on Food