Disclaimer: This is our honest and unbiased review of this product. We received product samples for our test tasting, samples to gift to a lucky reader and nothing else. 

As we mentioned in our BlogHer Food recap, we were introduced to some products we're excited to tell you about. The first is a sweet-tooth satisfying, chocolatey treat called Brownie Brittle, which one lucky reader will get shipped to them (read on for details)!

Do you know anyone who calls dibs on the crispy edges of homemade brownies? I'm that person (although, to be honest, I'd call dibs on any part of a brownie) and this product is snack food paradise in a pouch. A rich brownie taste and the crisp crunch of a cookie make it so hard to stop eating these.

Brownie Brittle comes in four varieties all of which we've tried and vouch for.  The mint chocolate chip ones have been added to my Mint Chocolate Obsession Pinterest board and Ethan may take to hiding the Salted Caramel and hoarding them for himself, but the Chocolate Chip and Toffee Crunch flavors are just as praiseworthy.

These snacks are great out of the bag but we also thought they would be a great addition to one of the crowd-pleasing desserts we're know for, Cannoli Cream Dip.  We usually serve it with cannoli shell chips but those aren't easy to come by, unlike Brownie Brittle (we've spotted them at our local chain grocery and drug stores).

After visiting Sicily last year, we've become cannoli cream purist. It's all about the quality of your ricotta cheese. We purchase farm fresh local ricotta at our grocery store (if I had access to the farm itself, I'd buy it direct!) and simply whip it with some superfine sugar and that's it! The most difficult thing you'll have to do is decide what flavor of Brownie Brittle you're going to dip into it.  We think that the classic chocolate chip and the salted caramel were the best, but there's really no going wrong.

The lovely folks at Brownie Brittle have offered to send one lucky Que Pasa NYC reader a 4-pack of the product to try for themselves so be sure to enter for your chance to win.  The sweepstakes ends at 11:59 pm PST on Sunday, July 27, 2014.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Jul 16, 2014 Posted in | , , , | 8 Comments »

I am a member of the Everywhere Society and Everywhere has provided me with compensation for this post. However, all thoughts and opinions expressed herein are my own.

It's the 4th of July and for so many of us the day's festivities will include firing up of the barbecues and getting our grill on. Last weekend I got some grilling inspiration by attending the Macy's Great American Grilling Guru #SizzleShowdown. Six semi-finalists, who won their spots by competing in regional competitions across the United States, gathered in New York's Herald Square on the steamy afternoon of June 28, 2014 to compete for the title of America's Greatest Grilling Guru and a prize of $10,000.

Macy's Culinary Council Hosted the America's Greatest Grilling Guru Showdown
 in Herald Square, New York City.

The competition was conducted under the watchful (and handsome) eyes of two Macy's Culinary Council Chefs, Johnny Iuzzini and Todd English. These guys epitomize the "bad boy" persona (especially Johnny) and are gastronomic phenoms to boot. During the 60 minutes that the contestants had to prepare their grill specialties, these guys paid close attention, looking for any new techniques or surprising techniques.

To distract the audience from the hunger induced by the enticing wafts of proteins and vegetables these skilled cooks were artfully preparing, the event host and chef judges posed trivia questions to test the audience's knowledge of Macy's, the Macy's Culinary Council, and Cooking. I was one of the many lucky winners and walked away with Todd English's cookbook Cooking in Everyday English: The ABCs of Great Flavor at Home. (So many recipes in here that I can't wait to prepare and they all look uncomplicated!)

As the competitors' 60 minutes came to an end, the judges were put to work, tasting and deconstructing each dish to determine who would be the winner. The submissions were an herb goat cheese and prosciutto stuffed chicken, pesto citrus prosciutto grilled shrimp, crab sliders with avocado tartar cream, pork and beef braids with charred apple-mango reduction, Thai lamb loin chops, and beef short ribs.

America's Greatest Grilling Guru Sherri W. of Crestview, FL.

When all was said and done, Sherri W.'s Grilled Thai Lamb Loin Chops reigned supreme. Sherrie walked away with the title, the cash prize, and a front row seat to next year's Macy's 4th of July Fireworks here in New York City! I walked away having had a great time, recipes in hand, and plans for some grilling of my own. Are you a grilling guru? If you are, you've got about a year to start perfecting your best recipe. Maybe you can be the next winner!

If you need a little inspiration to get started, visit the Macy's Culinary Council website for great seasonal recipes: macys.com/culinarycouncil

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Jul 4, 2014 Posted in | , , , , , | 2 Comments »

If you follow me on Twitter (@latina_sweetie) you may have seen my celebratory tweets about Chile's victory over Spain yesterday. I don't watch futbol (soccer if you prefer) nearly as much as I did when my dad, papi, was alive but I can't stay away from the excitement of the World Cup and I love the memories it conjures of happy times with him and my mom for that matter.

The World Cup was an event not just in our house but for our entire family, both mami and papi's sides. Schedules were adjusted to accommodate match times. If there was a game at 6 pm, we'd be eating dinner at 5 so that mami could be freed up in time to focus. If there was a match on while papi was at work, someone had to be home at the ready to record the game so he could watch it when he got home. [Before the days of programmable VCRs and DVRs my friends].

The team affinities were also clearly defined and I pretty much still abide by them today.

Round 1: You root for Chile and Peru because that's where papi and mami came from, respectively. You also root for the USA because that's our home country, it's where mami and papi met and where my sister and I were born and raised.  Lastly, if you loved mami, you also rooted for Brasil because, music lover that she was, she loved how they seemed to dance a samba with the ball.

Round 2 and Beyond: We continued to cheer on our 3 teams, but generally assumed we wouldn't have that option. So, when our 3 teams didn't move on we typically still had Brasil to cheer for. In the 90s, however, I became enamored with a footballer named Roberto Baggio, and thus was born my love affair with Italy.

So fast forward to #Brasil2014 (or #Brazil2014). I'm convinced that, in heaven, Papi was celebrating Chile's second win and seemingly secure advancement to the next round. Having no Peruvian team to support and a Brazilian team that's not at the top of their game, mami's probably hooting and hollering for Chile too. I can't help but be giddy at the though of it and am looking forward to the rest of the ride.

Papi playing for the Copihues Rojas (Amateur Chilean team out of Queens) in the 70s.

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Jun 19, 2014 Posted in | , , , , | 0 Comments »

It took us a while to digest all that we learned at BlogHer Food in Miami and boil it down to what we feel were the key takeaways that we think you'll find of interest, whether you're more interested in the blogging lessons or the food insights. We've already written one post about the food scene in Miami and we'll post a follow-up soon, so here we'll focus on those things inherent to attending the actual conference.

Que Pasa NYC's BlogHer Food '14 Top Five List

5. LOCATION - MIAMI: Neither Ethan nor I had been to Miami in the last decade so it was great to go back. We both walked away with far better experiences than our last trips there. Our highlight was exploring the neighborhood of Wynwood. A former warehouse district, it's now home to endless street murals that make it an urban outdoor gallery. Couple that with the fact that it also boasts a great food and drink scene and you'll understand why we'd recommend it for a weekend away even if you're not into the usual draw of the Miami nightlife scene.

4. TIPS: From creative writing exercises to photography pointers, our brains were bursting with new info. For example: need steam for your food pic? Stick a water soaked tampon in the microwave for about a minute, then hide it behind your plate. VOILĂ€!

3. BRANDS: We love discovering new products, especially food related ones - and BlogHer Food did not disappoint in this area. We were able to connect with representatives from some of our favorites (e.g. Lactaid and Applegate Farms) and were introduced to some new ones, some of which we can't wait to give you a chance to try, so stay tuned!

2. INSPIRATION: From so many people! We write about the things we love because it's fulfilling to capture the memories and to extend them by sharing them with our readers. If what we write helps even one person recall or create a joyful moment of their own, then that's satisfaction enough. Thanks to the BlogHer Food cheerleaders like Ruby of GUB Life and Xenia of Raised By Culture for keeping us motivated!

1. FRIENDS: Whether it's reconnecting with existing ones or meeting people you know will be friends moving forward, the connections made are the most valuable take away. Among our new foodie friends were Rashmi of The Primlani Kitchen, who introduced us to some fantastic eats in Miami and has us planning a return visit to Florida so that she can grace us with her cooking! We also had the pleasure of meeting Adriana Martin of  Adriana's Best Recipes, whose recipes get my mouth watering! I can't wait to try her Passion Fruit Agua Fresca Recipe.

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May 28, 2014 Posted in | , , , , | 0 Comments »

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