Remember to send a description of your own memorable meals to SporkPHS@gmail.com!
The best thing I ate this week was when I was a guest at my dad’s Princeton Adult School cooking class. I had seared sesame-crusted ahi tuna with bok choy stir fry. The fish was really fresh and had a mild flavor with a warm hoisin ginger sauce. It was a great Asian fusion dish. We also a jumbo lump crab canneloni. The crab was mixed into a ricotta and parmesean filling and stuffed into a crepe that was really sweet and savory. I also had warm homemade chocolate chip cookies where the chocolate was oozing out of the cookies–yum!

- Noelle Anglade
The best thing I ate this week was homemade pizza. We didn't have any tomato sauce or mozzarella, so we foraged through the fridge and came up with something amazing. First, we brushed the dough with garlic olive oil. Then, we topped it with caramelized onions, brie, and homemade balsamic syrup. The balsamic was cooked a little too long and became candy-like on the pizza. It wasn't your traditional pizza, but it was delicious nonetheless.


- Charlotte Gray
 
What's the best thing you ate this week? Spork readers respond! To see your entry featured on next week's blog post, send a few sentences describing the best thing you ate to SporkPHS@gmail.com.
The best thing I ate this week was a "Plain and Simple" dessert crepe from Crepes du Nord (located in Bridgewater Mall) with added extras of fresh strawberries, homemade whipped cream, and local ice cream. It ended up being bigger than expected and, much to my displeasure, I had to share it with two others. Oh my gosh, I'm still dreaming of its buttery goodness.

- Caleigh Dwyer
Monday night, we had Peking duck, with hoisin sauce and scallions, wrapped in homemade Mandarin pancakes, with a side of steamed sugar snap peas and red quinoa.  A fairly labor-intensive meal, but certainly worth it in the end, especially when it's your dad whose doing the 24-hour duck preparation!

- David Klinges
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David's Peking duck
 
This week's Link Love is for meat lovers! Photographer Dominic Episcopo creates art out of raw meat. Most notably, Episcopo carved a steak into the shape of each state in the US. Even more impressive, he eventually ate all the meat he photographed!

Check out his photos here:

http://meatamerica.com/index.php/category/allimages/
 
As the week ends, we have one important question. What's the best thing you ate this week? Here's what we were enjoying!
A beet gnocchi with a Meyer lemon pesto. Mild beet flavor blended into a delicious pasta, with a hint of lemon and basil.
- Dorothy Weiss
The best thing I ate this week was breakfast at a southern chain restaurant called Waffle House. My mom and I both ordered pecan waffles with sunny side up eggs and an order of hash browns. It was the ultimate southern breakfast experience,with a juke box when you walked in and wonderful hospitality by the servers.
- Cara Straus
Trader joe's Artichoke Asiago cheese dip! Best served warm and melty, and great on a few slices of baguette.
- Amara Leonard  
Did you eat something delicious this week? Will you eat something delicious next week? Tell us about it and you could be included in this weekly post! Email a short description of your food to SporkPHS@gmail.com. Pictures are appreciated!
 

by Emma Cohen

As Valentine’s Day approaches, choosing the right chocolatey treat for that special someone might be a bit overwhelming with the vast array of choices. Spork took six popular brands and pitted them against each other, considering overall taste, texture, appearance, variety of flavors, and price and giving each brand a final rating on a scale of ten. All of these chocolates, with the exception of the Thomas Sweet chocolate (bought at their storefront in Palmer Square), were easily purchased at Princeton’s very own Rite-Aid.

Thomas Sweet   –   9.5

Thomas Sweet is a Princeton favorite, and for good reason! Famous for it’s oversized chocolate bars in quirky shapes, Thomas Sweet offers the overall best Valentine’s Day chocolate options. I bought a simple milk chocolate heart for the fair price of $4.75. It was smooth, sweet, and satisfying without being overwhelming. The shape was cute, and it surprisingly didn’t flake or crumble when I bit into it. Though more expensive (over $10), they also offer a selection of variety packs, as well as the option to choose which specific chocolates you would like in a pack. With a great taste and large selection, you can’t go wrong with Thomas Sweet.

Hershey's   –   9

Who doesn’t love a classic Hershey kiss? The brand doesn’t offer many options in terms of Valentine’s Day chocolate, but I found a simple heart-shaped box of kisses for $1.19. A large bag of kisses can cost between three and five dollars, depending on the size of the bag. These kisses are not only cute, with pink wrappers for Valentine’s Day, but they have an appealing, familiar flavor and a convenient, bite-sized shape.

Russell Stover   –   8

Although the name might sound unfamiliar, these are the chocolates you see in every CVS and Rite Aid, and are surprisingly delicious. They have a wide variety of flavors, especially on their website if you want to go the extra mile, and the texture and taste of the chocolates is well-balanced. I bought a miniature variety box of chocolates for just $1.29, a perfect quantity for someone who enjoys chocolate but doesn’t want to be overwhelmed by it. The flavors I got, dark chocolate with nougat, milk with caramel, and milk with coconut shavings, were all sweet but too overpowering.  The only issue with Russell Stover was the somewhat cheap appearance of the package (most likely from rough handling) and the fact that the variety pack left me guessing what flavors I had received.

Lindt   –   9

Lindt chocolates are familiar to most Princetonians, with our own Lindt store right next to Palmer Square. A symbol of chocolate luxury for many, they are primarily known for their signature Lindor truffles. The orbs are filled with creamy chocolate ganache and come in several mouth-watering flavors. One standard bag of Lindor truffles is priced at $7, but the Valentine-themed package I tried was $11.99. As usual, the truffles didn’t fail to please. The shiny shells cracked softly, revealing the smooth, melt-in-your-mouth interior. The only problem? The chocolates are pretty pricey for a high school budget.

Dove   –   9

Dove chocolate’s advertising emphasizes the “bliss” of their chocolate-y products. And when I tried the Dove chocolates, I truly felt that bliss. The chocolates I bought were miniature, heart-shaped milk chocolates called “Silky Smooth Milk Chocolate Truffles” in a beautiful Valentine box. They were creamy and delicious, with a nougaty center. The only issue with this brand was the fact that the flavors are very limited, with only the typical dark, milk, and white varieties.

Ghirardelli   –   7

We all know of Ghirardelli chocolates, refined and smooth with a variety of fillings. Unfortunately, not all the chocolates I opened fit that standard. The package I bought for $4.91 was heart shaped, and included milk chocolate with caramel, dark chocolate with mint, and dark chocolate with raspberry. Disregarding the fact that I’m not a huge chocolate and mint fan, when I opened the mint and dark chocolate squares the filling had oozed out and was, well, unappetizing. The flavor of the mint square was overpowering, and I barely tasted the chocolate, making me wish I had bought a Peppermint Patty instead. But, the raspberry filled and caramel filled chocolates made up for the minty mess, as both had smooth textures and delicious fillings.

Best bang for your buck:

Hershey’s and Russell Stover. Both brands offered Valentine packages under two dollars, which, though small, offered flavor sure to satisfy!
 
We are pleased to introduce the "Link Love" series, to be published every Monday. The school week has started, procrastination has hit hard, and Facebook is already dull. Turn to Spork for your share of food related websites, blog posts, news articles, and other links to occupy a few minutes!

First up, a charming list of cooking tips and twists compiled on BuzzFeed:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/peggy/24-incredibly-simple-ways-to-make-your-food-taste

We're psyched to try #2, below.
 

Recipes contributed by Annie Prior and Dorothy Weiss

In the latest issue of Spork, we printed breakfast recipes for weekdays and weekends. Here are a few more we couldn't resist sharing! 

Bacon Egg Grilled Cheese

Adapted from Incredible Egg
Yield: 1 sandwich

This grilled cheese is a hearty (but not so heart-healthy) treat for when you have a few extra minutes to fry up bacon. If there is enough bacon grease left in the pan, using butter to grill the sandwich is unnecessary.

1 egg, prepared as desired (scrambled, fried, poached, etc)
2 tsp butter
2 slices bread (any type)
1 slice cheese (any type)
2 slices fully cooked bacon
coarse salt

1. In a medium sized saute pan, fry bacon until fully cooked.
2. Assemble sandwich by placing egg, cheese, and two strips of bacon between two slices of bread. Press together.
3. Heat 1 teaspoon of butter in the skillet until melted. Place sandwich in pan and grill until the side facing down is golden and toasted. Remove sandwich, melt remaining teaspoon of butter, and repeat with the other side of the sandwich. Make sure the cheese has melted (2-4 minutes) before removing sandwich.
4. Sprinkle with coarse salt, slice, and enjoy!

Customizable Granola Bars

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

These granola bars are beautifully customizable; you can make the recipe over and over again, with different add-ins every time. For our first batch, we threw in cashews, dried cherries, dark chocolate, and coconut flakes. Another test batch held white chocolate chips, pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, and dried fruit, and our most recent concoction was a chocolate-peanut butter bar with, of course, lots of chocolate, peanut butter, and peanuts!

2/3 cups quick rolled oats
2/3 cup finely ground rolled oats
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3 cups assorted dried fruit, nuts, chocolate chips, or other add-ins
6 tbsp melted butter or coconut oil
1/4 cup honey
2 tbsp light corn syrup
1 tbsp water

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8 x 8 or 9 x 13 inch pan with parchment paper, allowing it to go up two opposing sides. Grease with cooking spray.
2. Combine oats, ground oats, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and all add-ins. In a separate bowl, whisk together the remaining, wet ingredients. Pour wet into dry and mix evenly.
3. Spread mixture evenly into pan and press down with the backside of a measuring cup.
4. Bake for 25-30 minutes if in a 9 x 13 inch pan, 45-50 minutes if in an 8 x 8 inch pan. Allow to cool completely before cutting.
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Homemade chocolate-peanut butter granola bars
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Wrap in parchment paper and tie with a string for an adorable, edible package!

Avocado Baked Egg

Adapted from Knead to Cook
Yield: 2 servings


The avocado baked egg is savory, warm, and simple to whip up on a weekend. Plus, it comes with it's own bowl!

1 avocado
2 eggs
Optional toppings: Shredded cheese, chives, bacon pieces, tomato, crushed tortilla chips, or anything else!

1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. Slice the avocado in half and take out the pit. Place 1 raw egg in each half’s cavity. Sprinkle on toppings.
3. Place on a lined baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until egg is cooked to your personal preference.
 
Do you like pancakes? Flapjacks? Hot cakes? Griddlecakes? Short stacks? Tall stacks? Tender, homemade pancakes with unlimited toppings, enjoyed on a lazy Sunday morning with other friendly flapjack fans?

We thought so.

Come to Spork's first ever Pancake Breakfast to enjoy all of the above and more. Bring your friends! Bring your family! Bring your team, teddy bear, or goldfish! Fill up on pancakes, toppings, bacon and beverages for less than $10. All funds raised will help keep Spork in print.

Date: February 10, 2013
Time: 10 AM - 2 PM
Check out our Facebook event page for more details!