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McKinney & Doyle presents, for your perusal, our newsletter archive. This iteration of our newsletter began in the Fall of 2011 with Becky McKinney, Shannon's daughter, at the helm. All of the newsletters are and will be archived on this page. You can follow the story and history of McKinney & Doyle from the beginning. Becky has been there from the beginning and will give interesting stories, tips and insights.

Shannon and Becky
Shannon and Becky – Dad and Daughter

"When people learn that my family owns a restaurant and bakery, the first thing they say is "You are SO lucky!" Those who are close to me know that I agree with them. Not only am I lucky enough to be the daughter of chef and restaurant owner, but I am lucky enough to have worked at McKinney and Doyle since I was 12 years old. Now that I have graduated College, Shannon McKinney, aka Dad to my brother and I, continues to give me the opportunity to practice my public relations skills by means of a monthly newsletter. Even better, he's giving me the freedom to choose all of the content, including a personalized opinion column that I'm calling "Food for Thought." I'm thrilled to have this opportunity and look forward to your feedback!"

— Becky McKinney

The current newsletter will be on the top of the page. You can follow the thread by using the links above and at the end of each month's piece. Enjoy!

Shannon with others

Food For Thought

We all over indulge on Thanksgiving Day. It's our right and responsibility. But my family almost always repeats the indulgence the very next day. No, not with leftovers, but with a whole new offering prepared by Mom. The day after Thanksgiving is one of the very few days of the year that my brother and I are both still at home with our parents. So we take advantage of that and have a nice old fashioned family dinner.

This year, after watching my mom work so hard on Thanksgiving Day, I wanted to help out with our Friday Family Meal. My dad had asked me to make a banana cream pie anyway so I figured I would go all out and make an abundance of desserts for my family to try. I have been getting really into baking and cooking and am always looking for willing taste testers.

Banana Cream Pie

I spent about an hour browsing my Pinterest boards until I settled on three winners.

  1. Banana Cream Pie (for Dad)
  2. Oreo Truffles (for my brother, Ryan)
  3. Nutella & Strawberry Fried Wontons (Mom's request)

I obviously was tasting as I baked, so was my nephew, when Ryan wasn't paying attention, and I thought everything came out delicious. I was excited to serve my family dessert after my Mom's incredibly delicious (my all time favorite actually) homemade pasta and meat sauce. I even made extra so I could bring a platter to my boyfriend's house the next day.

After dinner and dessert I went out for a few hours. When I came home I went to put a platter of leftover dessert together for the next day. All I found were crumbs. Apparently, my brother was craving a late night snack and polished off ALL of the truffles, ALL of the wontons, and 75% of the banana pie. I later learned that he finished off the last 25% for breakfast Saturday morning.

So, while Matt's family did not get to taste any of my desserts, at least I know they are well received!

I've listed the basic ingredients for each dessert below, just to show you how simple they are to make. If you are interested in the full recipe and process for any of them, please feel free to reach out to me! I am happy to share!

Banana Cream Pie

  • Bananas
  • 'Nilla Wafers
  • Caramel
  • Sugar and Brown Sugar
  • Vanilla Pudding

Oreo Truffles

  • Oreos
  • Cream Cheese
  • Chocolate Chips

Wontons

  • Wonton wrappers
  • Nutella
  • Fresh Strawberries

Traditions are what makes the holiday season so special don't you think? What are your favorite family traditions this time of year? Feel free to share with me! Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com.

December 2013

December News

Thanksgiving came and went in a flash didn't it?! Now I only have about three weeks to drive Matt crazy with Christmas music! I'm already pestering him about when we have to go get our tree (this Christmas ornamentsweek if you were wondering). I have all of the decorations out and ready to go, which means I know what I'll be doing every evening after work - turning our apartment into a winter wonderland. I am giddy with excitement.

This month in Food for Thought I'll be sharing a few new sweet treat recipes that are perfect for holiday gatherings. I'll also share a little behind the scenes information about the Danish dough the M&D bakers make and use to create some of their sweet treats. In the bakery section, look out for information about holiday orders and seasonal offerings. Lastly, you'll find some restaurant schedule updates and important times to note.

As usual, enjoy this month and keep in touch! Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery Updates

I hope that those of you who placed a Thanksgiving Holiday Order enjoyed all of your goodies! I know it seems quick but since Thanksgiving came so late this year we only have three weeks until Christmas!

Check back on our website within the next week or so for the December holiday order forms! Or you can always pick one up in the bakery.

Please keep in mind that all December holiday orders must be placed by Sunday, December 22, 7 PM.

Also, remember that the bakery will close at 4 PM on Christmas Eve and will be closed Christmas Day. So be sure to pick up your orders in time!

Winter Exterior

Restaurant Updates

The holiday season means more than pumpkin martinis and pretty lights in the restaurant. It means extra brunch shifts!

I don't have the final details yet but if you like our weekend brunch menu, keep your eyes peeled for an email explaining our holiday brunch schedule.

I'll also be sending out an email in the upcoming weeks about a few schedule changes for Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve.

Danish Dough

This month I wanted to share some details on our homemade Danish Dough. The dough the bakers Danish Doughuse to make many of the M&D danish in the bakery including cheese danish, bearclaws, bowties (YUM), and cinnamon rolls.

The dough is made in house. The guys start with a slightly sweet fresh yeast dough rolled out into a large rectangle. Then, 2/3 of that rectangle of dough is coated in pure sweet butter (cue the drooling). Next, the final third is folded over 1/3 of the buttered section before 1/3 of the remaining buttered piece is folded back over the plain section. You still with me? We're at three layers of dough and two layers of butter.

The dough is left to rest for a while before the baker rolls it out yet again to repeat the process. This is repeated over and over again until there are 135 alternating layers of dough and butter. The final version is then rolled out super thin and made into the various danish shapes on the morning lineup. After all is said done, the entire process takes 2 days because of the resting periods.

135 layers! That explains the flaky, buttery bites you get!

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Food For Thought

The beginning of November is the beginning of the holiday season, which means food, family, celebration, and tradition. I know I'm not alone when I say that I love tradition. Growing up in a tight knit family, we have a TON.

For example, when my parents host Christmas, we have a "Pajama Christmas" where everyone who comes over wears their pajamas or sweats or whatever they're most comfortable in. Pajama Christmas is all about being cozy. This all started when one year we were hit with a HUGE snowstorm on Christmas Day (my dream come true by the way). All of our family members were stuck at our house for the night, so we turned it into a fun theme. The fire was going, all of the cousins were playing with our new toys, the eggnog was flowing, and eventually, us kids all fell asleep on the living room floor in front of the tree and the fireplace. It was, to this day, my very favorite Christmas celebration.

Now that Thanksgiving is right around the corner I'm excited for its traditions. Aside from overeating at dinner in the early afternoon and going in for round two and then three as the night progresses, there are other things to expect as well.

I know some people like to experiment with their Thanksgiving turkey; remember the deep fried turkey fad? Do people still do that? I heard a lot of stories about how that went horribly wrong for some. Anyway, we don't mess around with that kind of stuff. Every year my mother roasts the perfect turkey (usually given to us from our neighbors up the street), filled with her chestnut stuffing, in her oven, in a big brown paper bag. She starts cooking it while we all eat breakfast and discuss how we probably should have skipped the big breakfast since we will be feasting in about three hours when the rest of the family arrives. We say this every year, and yet every year we go for a big breakfast.

Everyone else arrives between one and two. There are always tons of snacks before the main event and again, we all discuss how we should probably take it slow. We never take it slow. Finally, around three or four, we all sit around the dining room table - which is reserved for holiday meals. I seriously cannot remember the last time I ate a meal at that table when it wasn't Thanksgiving or Christmas.

Then the real fun begins. My Grandpa Forbes, whom any of you that frequent the bakery have most definitely seen and probably chatted with, HATES, and I mean HATES, vegetables. "Nothing green for me," are the first words out of his mouth when the plates start getting passed around. No, he won't even eat greenbean casserole with all its cheesy, bread crumby goodness. But you want to know what he loves? His oyster casserole.

Unfortunately, not a single other person in the family shares his enthusiasm for the dish. We all politely decline, some more politely than others, every single year. That's a tradition in itself. We will never have a Thanksgiving without
Grandpa's oyster casserole. But in recent years, as siblings and cousins have started bringing significant others to significant holidays, we've started a new tradition. First timers MUST have a serving of Grandpa's oyster casserole. Finishing it is not a requirement, but tasting it is. It always makes for good conversation and a few laughs.

Traditions are what makes the holiday season so special don't you think? What are your favorite family traditions this time of year? Feel free to share with me! Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com.

November 2013

November News

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Can you imagine me singing? Ok, I know that's technically a Christmas song but the holiday season really is the most wonderful time of the year! I may be getting ahead of myself but I've already started Christmas shopping. It just makes me so
happy!

Anyway, with the holidays right around the corner there is always SO much to do to prepare. Don't let yourself get too stressed planning the holiday meals and family get togethers. Make sure you take some time for yourself to relax, have fun, and take it easy. In the spirit of relaxation, in the "In the Restaurant" section of this month's newsletter you'll find updates to our Tuesday night Pub Menu as well as some new wine additions. And what better way to relax than with a fabulous glass of wine?

In the spirit of having fun, the "In the Bakery" section reveals this year's winner of the Pumpkin Carving Contest along with a photo of the work.

Does your family have any special holiday traditions? Mine has a ton and I've shared some of them with you in "Food for Thought" this month.

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving and will hopefully see some of you during my visit to New York this month.

Bourbon on-the-rocksLastly, look out for updates on an upcoming Single-Malt and Bourbon tasting scheduled for November 21. Guests will enjoy a number of different spirits as well as passed appetizers in a casual yet interactive atmosphere. I'll send out all of the details as soon as they are finalized.

 

 

As usual, enjoy this month and keep in touch! Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery Updates

First of all, I'd like to congratulate the winner of this year's Pumpkin Carving Contest!

Congratulations Ferrol Lynch! What a creative and skillfully carved pumpkin!

Now that our Halloween fun is over, it's time to focus on Thanksgiving. You can find our specialty holiday order forms on the McKinney & Doyle website here.

I will definitely be shoving my healthy eating habits in the corner for a pack of those soft sweet butter rolls. My plate at Thanksgiving will be covered in them. Yum!

Remember, Thanksgiving holiday orders MUST be received by 5 PM on Monday, November 25. You can pick up your orders through the end of the day
(9PM) on Wednesday, November 27.

The bakery and restaurant are both CLOSED on Thanksgiving Day.

Servers

Restaurant and Bar Updates

As many of you may have seen on our Facebook page, the Tuesday night Pub Menu has gone through some renovations. If you enjoy pub night, stop by on a Tuesday and try one of the following new additions:

  • Pork Belly Flatbread
    with creamy béchamel, red onion, and gouda
  • Shannon's Winter Chili
    made with tender beef and savory beans and topped with cheddar and onion
  • Hudson Valley Pork Schnitzel
    breaded pork filets with fresh apples and brown sugar vinegar sauce
  • Baby Clams Fagioli
    with garlic steamed clams over braised cannaneli beans tossed with smoked bacon and tomato

On top of the recent menu changes, Andrew has added some new wines to the collection, all of which have been rated over 90 points!

Check out the short description below and feel free to ask Andrew or any of the bartenders for their recommendations:

  • 2008 Barolo, Casa E. di Mirafiore, Piedmonte
  • 2010 Shiraz, Mitolo "Jester", California
  • 2009 Syrah, Reininger, Walla Walla
  • 2011 Malbec, Torino "Finca la Maravilla #6", Salta
  • 2010 Tempranillo, Dominio de Pingus "PSI", Ribera del Duero
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Food For Thought

Happy birthday to my darling nephew Jacob! He turned one at the end of September and I really just can't get over it. It's crazy how time flies.

Anyway, everybody knows that the best part about a child's first birthday party is letting them go nuts with the cake. My brother had been talking about making a miniature cake for Jacob for his 1st birthday since he was a newborn so of course I didn't want to get in the way of that.

Nephew Jacob

However, as the only aunt, it is my duty, my responsibility, and my right to spoil him to the extremes. I usually do this with trendy overpriced outfits that he will outgrow in a week, fancy toys, and great shoes (that his chubby, perfect feet can't even squeeze into). So, I found all these fun cake ideas for Jacob and as a next day birthday bonus, made him a cupcake. After all, I celebrate my birthday for weeks, the least I can do is help him celebrate his for an entire weekend.

So I found myself in my kitchen in Delaware trying to decide between chocolate and vanilla, homemade icing or canned, rainbow colors or plain. I debated for maybe an hour before I told myself how ridiculous I was being. "He's a year old and has never had cake before - what difference does it make?" I opted for my favorite because when you are madly in love with your nephew/godson that you have to travel six hours to see - you take whatever form of a bonding moment that you can!

In case you were wondering, he's not much different than any other kid - he loves sugar!

October 2013

Full Frontal Foliage

I'm in a a full fall frenzy. My apartment smells like cinnamon apples, I'm drinking a pumpkin latte, and my crock pot is being used almost daily. The only thing that's missing is a fire in the wood burning stove. But then again, I don't want to rush into the winter season too quickly.

Fall in Dutchess County

This month I'll be sharing a very special birthday celebration with you all - no, not my own. We'll also touch on some upcoming fall fun activities in the bakery and of course discuss some seasonal changes in the restaurant.

I hope you are all enjoying the start of autumn as much as I am. If you have any favorite crock pot recipes please send them my way! There is nothing better than coming home after a long day at work and having dinner ready to go and the whole apartment smelling edible.

Enjoy this month and keep in touch! Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery

First of all - congratulations to the bakery staff on being named the Best Old Fashioned Bakery in the Hudson Valley again this year!

Yet again! Best of Huson Valley 2013

That being said, have you had a hot apple cider yet? What about a decadent homemade hot chocolate? Pumpkin pie latte? The bakery is offering all of my favorite cool weather treats and I cannot wait to spend some weekends home in New York so I can treat myself. I only hope you're doing the same!

While you're picking up a warm drink, ask the girls about our annual pumpkin carving contest. We've had a ton of fun with it the past few years and are looking forward to seeing everyone's submissions this month! Keep your eyes open as I'll be sending out a detailed announcement on the event next week! In the meantime, start getting creative and thinking of your pumpkin carving creation!

And The Restaurant

Andrew has done it again. In fact, I think he said this cocktail menu is his favorite as of yet! So now you KNOW you have to get yourself a seat at the bar and try some of his new prescription libations. I can't wait to get home and do just that! I'll go over a few of your new options here, but believe me, there's much more to see and taste when you get a chance to stop by.

Blood & Smoke
Roasted beet and pink peppercorn infused mezcal,walnut liqueur, Boston citrus bittahs and ginger beer

Devil Wears Cacao
Dos Anejo Tequila, fresh lime, creme de cacao, mole bitters, and a house made fig soda

Hudsons Apple Mule
I think this one will become a fall favorite!
Brown butter infused Calvados, cinnamon bark, and brown sugar syrup all topped with dry cider

Like I said, there are several more cocktails that Andrew has come up with for the season and if I've learned anything about his inventions, it's that they are all worth trying one, two, three, (you get my point) times.

If you get in to M&D before I do, I'm very open to recommendations and I'd love to hear about your favorites!


Dinner Menu Changes

YAY the fall/winter menu is here! Which means my all time favorite meal, the Maine lobster risotto is back! It's hearty, creamy, decadent, and absolutely fantastic.

We also welcome some new additions this season including:

Mustard and Maple Rubbed Berkshire Pork Chop
Served with giardinera relish and corn breadust

Coffee Spice Crusted Duck Breast
With caramel sauce and wild rice apricot pilaf

and

Butternut Squash Ravioli
served with toasted hazelnut cream sauce

There are plenty more new items to try on this season's dinner menu too!

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Food For Thought

he "health kick" continues. My sweet tooth tried to get the best of me, but thanks to Pinterest (of course), I was able to find ways to trick it without breaking too many rules. I have to say, it's easier to do this living in Delaware, three and a half hours south of M&D, aka Sweet Lovers Heaven.

My friends once told me that if I had a doll made after me that spoke when you pulled a string in her back, the only things she would say is "I want something sweet." Apparently that's a common phrase for me. My sweet tooth usually strikes at about 8 o'clock at night, after dinner has settled. Like clockwork, I am craving ice cream, or cookies, or a brownie sundae. I turned to the Internet to find out ways to satisfy this craving without kicking all my hard work to the curb.

I think I hit the jackpot. My refrigerator is now stocked with sweet treats minus the guilt. Ice cream made 100 percent from bananas, stuffed strawberries, and homemade frozen yogurt. Before you assume that they taste like the typical low sugar, "diet" desserts, I highly recommend you try at least one of them (click the above links to get to the exact recipes). I swear I'm being honest, I loved each one and will happily be recreating them over and over again. But, the ice cream made from bananas is easily my number one.

This dessert could not be more simple to make. There isn't even really a "recipe." Are you ready? All you do is peel and slice up a few bananas, depending on how much ice cream you want. This stores really well in your freezer so feel free to make a big batch, I always do. Anyway, freeze the sliced bananas for an hour or two. Next, blend them in a food processor or regular blender. I had taken my food processor apart to clean and cannot for the life of me get it back together properly. Some daughter of a chef I am, huh? I used the regular blender and it worked just fine.

At first, the frozen pieces will look like they are just breaking apart, but don't give up. Soon you'll see a creamy texture start to form. Blend out any lumps and you're done. Seriously, that's it! No sugar added, nothing. Just pure bananas. No it doesn't taste like baby food, it tastes like rich, creamy, banana flavored ice cream. I love it just like this. Matt loves it with some peanut butter stirred in at the end. My friend Lara likes to add a little dark chocolate. You can add anything you want to enhance the flavor and make it your own.

Regardless, it tastes like ice cream that was made with a ton of heavy cream and buttery goodness. But it's not. Seriously, try it. The first time I made it, Matt and I ate the entire quart. At least it was all fruit, right? We seriously need to work on our portion sizes. Whoops!

September 2013

Fall Fun

September is my favorite month of the entire year! And it has everything to do with the fact that it's my birthday month! I have no shame in admitting how much I LOVE my birthday! Birthday means a fantastic meal and all the sweets I want, which you'll realize is very important to me if you check out Food for Thought in this newsletter.

Summer may be
coming to an end, but fall is so fantastic. Soon we'll be immersed in apple and pumpkin picking, seasonal treats, and beautiful colors. Are you ready?

Aside from my addiction to sweets, this month we'll talk about some local vendors and welcome back some fall favorites in the bakery.

I'll end this month with some great news. M&D won an award with Tripadvisor called The certificate of Excellence! This award is given to hospitality businesses that have consistently received high praise in their customer reviews. A restaurant must have a constant rating of 4 out of 5 stars or better to be considered. Congratulations to all the staff!

Enjoy this month and keep in touch! Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery

You know how they say you can't wear white after Labor Day? Well I say no pumpkin
before
Labor Day. Lucky for me, the girls in the bakery agree.

Starting mid month, you can start ordering Pumpkin Spice Lattes (with our homemade pumpkin syrup) as well as some flavored hot chocolates. My favorite is the salted caramel, but peppermint is also really popular, especially once we head into late fall and early winter. Keep your eyes peeled for a new flavor addition as well.

And what says fall better than hot apple cider? You'll soon be able to add that to your morning commute too.

Lastly, you still have some time, but start thinking about a creative pumpkin carving idea! Next month the bakery will be hosting its annual pumpkin carving contest. More details to come.

Summer in the Hudson Valley

I've said it before and I'll say it again; everyone at M&D has a firm belief in supporting other local businesses. The partnerships that exist among small businesses throughout Pawling help to make this town as wonderful as it is.

It just so happens that our friendships with local businesses and suppliers go hand in hand with our devotion to high quality and fresh ingredients. For example, the M&D family has been working with Dykeman Farm for as long as I can remember. During the summer months we get all of our corn, tomatoes, peppers, and zucchini from the Dykeman's. I speak for all of us at M&D when I say that we think their sweet corn is the best on the planet! It's amazing to do business with a local farm and it's even more amazing to hold the family that runs it near and dear to our hearts.

Dykeman's Veggies

Anyone from the town of Pawling knows how great Dykeman's is. What may come as a shock though is what I like to call our "surprising supplier." Jimmy, from Diversified Services, affectionately known as "Jimmy the phone guy," (he installed the phone system in the bakery and restaurant) maintains an absolutely gorgeous, 100 percent organic garden at his home, Keltic Crossings Farm. Because we tend to become friendly with our vendors and suppliers, we have been lucky enough to receive some of Jimmy's absolutely gorgeous Brandywine Heirloom Tomatoes this summer as well as his home grown Red Butter Lettuce. Jimmy's passion for his vegetables is evident in his eagerness to share them. Take a look at some of the goodies he's given us recently!

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Food For Thought

I go through a major health kick every summer. I think a lot of people do. It only takes one beach day for anyone to say to themselves, "Ok, I need to get myself together." I literally said those exact words to Matt at the start of my health kick and I added "and if I have to eat healthier, so do you." This is really just a fact. I cook dinner most of the time, therefore, if he wants to eat, he'll eat the healthy meals I prepare. Easy enough.

Anyway, determined to eat well and control my grocery store binge shopping trips, I began planning out dinners for every night of the week. As a side note, this is a great way to save money at the grocery store. Lesson learned.

Some of my healthy options flopped, but others were a huge success including One Pot Wonder Pasta, black bean enchiladas, and vegetable medley quinoa. You can check out the recipes for each by clicking what sounds most intriguing to you, but I'd like to focus on the One Pot Wonder.

When I first found this recipe, I mainly wanted to try it to see if it really worked. It was just a pleasant surprise when it not only worked, but was delicious enough to send both of us back for seconds, and then thirds (which kind of took the healthy out of the meal, but hey, ya win some ya lose some).

Food in pot

No joke, you literally put all of the ingredients, including the uncooked pasta, in one pot together, at the same time, and wait. The recipe says it takes about 15-20 minutes. It ended up taking me about 35-40, but that's because I'm working with a stove that basically coughs in protest when you try to turn the heat above medium low. You'll probably have a much quicker turnover time.

I looked over the recipe, which you can find over to the right and towards the bottom of this newsletter, a few times in disbelief. Then I just shrugged and decided to go for it.

In one large pot, I dumped raw, whole wheat spaghetti, tons of garlic, basil, stewed tomatoes, vegetable broth, and red pepper flakes (spicy is always welcome in my kitchen), an onion, and some olive oil. Then I turned on the stove and sat down to watch TV while I waited. My house quickly started to smell incredible, like I had been making sauce from scratch all day long. What's better than that? The easiest meal to prepare, EVER, and it smells like you slaved all day? Done.

When we finally sat down to eat, I was a little nervous. But after realizing that three bowls each had been inhaled and zero words exchanged, I concluded that this recipe was a success. Try it yourself, you won't be disappointed.

August 2013

August News

This month read about the most decadent chocolate shake you can find, a healthy idea that went a bit overboard, and another amazing cocktail story. I'd also like to remind you all about a simple way to break up your week.

I hope you are all enjoying your summer. This summer has been all about new recipes for me so if you have a favorite summer meal that you'd like to share, please reach out to me!

Enjoy this month and keep in touch! Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery

Summer is always a great season for the bakery because of all the delicious fruits that come into season.

Now that juicy plums and peaches are thriving, you'll find a ton of delectable plum almond and peach almond tartes for sale in the cake case. My suggestion? Grab one of each for your next BBQ, picnic, birthday party, Tuesday night - whatever, and enjoy with friends - or keep it all for yourself, either way works for me! Nothing says summer time like a rich and creamy milkshake. The best advice I can offer to you this summer, especially since it feels extraordinarily hotter than usual, is to stop by the soda fountain in the bakery and try one of the new Double Chocolate Shakes.

Remember the ultra chocolatey, velvety smooth hot chocolate you had over the winter? The bakery girls take that decadent mixture and add it to Hershey's chocolate ice cream to make what is now the best chocolate shake I have ever tasted.

And the Restaurant

What could be better than a midweek bottle of wine with your friends?

Don't forget about our Wednesday night deal: Half off any bottle of wine on our wine list. No exceptions!

My favorite way to enjoy half off wine bottles is to pair it with the evening's bar taco. I always say I'll stick with one but somehow end up with at least two.

What's your favorite M&D tradition?

Recipe of the Month: One Pot Wonder Tomato Basil Pasta

  • 12 ounces linguine pasta
  • 1 can (15 ounces) diced tomatoes with liquid ( I used zesty red pepper flavor)
  • 1 large sweet onion, cut in julienne strips
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
  • 2 large sprigs basil, chopped
  • 4 1/2 cups vegetable broth (regular broth and NOT low sodium)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Parmesan cheese for garnish

Place pasta, tomatoes, onion, garlic, basil, in a large stock pot. Pour in vegetable broth. Sprinkle on top the pepper flakes and oregano. Drizzle top with oil.
Cover pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a low simmer and keep covered and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring every 2 minutes or so. Cook until almost all liquid has evaporated - I left about an inch of liquid in the bottom of the pot - but you can reduce as desired .

Season to taste with salt and pepper, stirring pasta several times to distribute the liquid in the bottom of the pot. Serve garnished with Parmesan cheese."

*Note that this was adopted from Apron Strings blog and it isn't the only fantastic recipe! Go check them out and let me know what you try!

NOLA - Tales of the Cocktail

Tales of the Cocktail is one of the world's premier gatherings for all things liquor related. Think of it as a five day high class cocktail conference. For the past 11 years, attendees experienced over 200 seminars, tasting rooms, competitions, and special dinners. Tales of the Cocktail brings in some of the world's top bartenders, mixologists, and media. Guess who got to go this year? Our very own Andrew.

Andrew Chatting

Since Andrew recently received his certification as a specialist of spirits, he got involved in the Paleo Cocktail Conference and helped to educate on the history and evolution of cocktails. Additionally, he was able to sit in on some amazing seminars discussing flavor extracts, the history and influence of ice, and the history of spirits in Latin America.

Of all the incredible experiences, Andrew's favorite was when he worked the Diageo World Class Happy Hour, set at the first ever U.S. Mint in New Orleans. The event was themed around a cruise ship, giving "passports" to all guests. As they roamed the event, they "docked" at each "port" bar, each designated to a different region. They were then served a specific spirit created with the inspiration of that region. Cool, right?!

Andrew headed the JW Black Scotch bar at the Indian Ocean Port. His drink was called "Sri Lanka's Secret," and featured JW Black, vanilla liqueur, batavia arrack, mango nectar, and habanero shrub. Sounds incredible doesn't it? A self proclaimed "liquid geek," Andrew says that he loves to create drinks that tell a story of culture and history.

Once again, I must announce how proud I am of my dear friend and how lucky we all feel to have him at M&D.

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Food For Thought

Fourth of July barbeques are a summer staple. And while they are always enjoyable and fun, they can seem a bit repetitive. You typically see the same types of food at each: hot dogs, burgers, potato salad, fruit salad, you get the gist.

I'll be hosting a 4th of July BBQ this year and I wanted to introduce some new ideas to my guests. While last months grilled lemonade will definitely make an appearance, as well as some chorizo burgers (SO delicious), my sweet tooth is on a rampage right now so I'd like to focus more on my dessert ideas that I found on Pinterest.

Everyone loves a good fruit salad on a hot summer day. Nobody loves to carry around a fork and bowl while they are mingling. So how about a fruit kabob? Take it to a festive level and make them with bananas, strawberries, and blueberries and arrange them like the picture below.

For those looking for something a little more decadent than fruit, you can actually make cakes that look like American flags inside when sliced. I've never tried this before so I'll let you know how it turns out, but the recipe/instructions (as well as a picture of what it should turn out like) can be found in the Recipe of the Month section.napkin, knife and fork

Last, but certainly not least, my S'mores addiction is still in full swing. But in the spirit of tweaking ideas - how about adding sliced grilled bananas into the mix? I have a feeling these are going to become a regular summer treat for me.

July 2013

July News

I can't believe it's already July! I hope you are all enjoying your summer so far. This month we have a ton of great stuff going on including some new lunch menu items and seasonal bakery treats. We'll continue with the Recipe of the Month trend and also take some time to really understand the difference between wild versus farm-raised salmon. A lot of people have some false ideas about the two!

Food for Thought will focus on some new and improved 4th of July BBQ ideas that were pulled from my favorite site, Pinterest, of course. Let me know what you think of them and if you utilize any in your Independence Day celebrations.

Enjoy this month and keep in touch! Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery

Summer Fruit Postcard

Summer is always a great season for the bakery because of all the delicious fruits that come into season.

Now that juicy plums and peaches are thriving, you'll find a ton of delectable plum almond and peach almond tartes for sale in the cake case. My suggestion? Grab one of each for your next BBQ, picnic, birthday party, Tuesday night - whatever, and enjoy with friends - or keep it all for yourself, either way works for me!

 

 

And the Restaurant

I know that typically I only have dinner menu changes to announce, which is why I'm so excited to tell you about some of the new lunch menu items you can enjoy this summer.

Strawberry Fields Salad
(Already a favorite among the M&D staff) Grilled shrimp over organic greens with endive, goat cheese, candied walnuts and fresh strawberries tossed with a honey poppyseed vinaigrette

New York Strip Steak Fajitas
These are pretty self explanatory but I cannot express my excitement over them. Can you ever go wrong with fajitas? I think not.

Pizza Margherita
A grilled thin crust pizza with tomato, sweet basil and homemade mozzarella cheese.

Chrissy's Cheesy Chicken
A favorite from our Monday Night Grind days. Grilled chicken breast, Vermont cheddar, red onion, and BBQ sauce

Pork Milanese Sandwich
Breaded pork tenderloin, fresh avocado, sliced red onion and citrus mayonnaise

 

Recipe of the Month: Fourth of July Flag Cake

Happy Independence Day Postcard

Please note that the following recipe originates from a blog called Plain Chicken

  • What you need:
    Two boxes of white cake mix (and the ingredients listed on the box)
  • Red & Blue food coloring
  • Icing (Or make your own!)

While I copied the recipe here for you, feel free to check out the blog from which it came!

  1. Grease two 8" cake pans
  2. Prepare one box of cake mix, color it red, and divide equally into the pans
  3. Bake as instructed, let cool, and remove from pans
  4. Grease pans again and prepare remaining cake mix
  5. Pour half into one pan, color the remaining half blue, and pour into second pan
  6. Bake as instructed, let cool, and remove from pans
  7. Using a serrated knife, slice red and white layers in half horizontally and set one white and two red pieces aside (they will be the bottom three stripes)
  8. Use a 4" cookie cutter to cut a circle out of the remaining white and red layers as well as a circle in the middle of the blue layer
  9. Frost the bottom three layers of cake together - uncut red layer, uncut white layer, uncut red layer and top with frosting
  10. Set blue cake ring on top and place the white inner circle on top of uncut red layer, inside the ring of blue
    Frost and top with red inner circle
  11. Frost entire cake and decorate as desired
Salmon: Wild vs. Farm Raised

Map of the Feroe Islands

As more and more foodies are born, more and more questions have been raised about where restaurant's and grocery stores get their ingredients. This, of course, is a fair question. Everybody deserves to know what exactly they are eating. The questions of wild versus farm raised seafood comes into play more frequently than not and it's important to know details about both.

There are a lot of people out there that will tell you that farm raised salmon is the wrong way to go. They say that there are high levels of mercury and other chemicals in the food that is fed to the salmon before it ends up on your plate. BUT, as with all stereotypes, this is unfair. Not all farm raised salmon is like that.

On the other side of the debate - wild caught salmon is not from some guy who went out with his fishing pole and caught your dinner. Most wild caught salmon are captured in trawling nets that scrape the sea floor and pick up around 8 pounds of other marine life and debris for every 2 pounds of salmon caught.

M&D is proud to say that we serve Farmed Salmon from the Feroe Islands in the North Atlantic. The Feroe Islands are located between Scotland and Iceland and produce some of the best salmon in the world. They are 100% antibiotic free and raised in all natural sea pens with strong currents and icy cold water.

If you want more information you can check out their full story here.

Let me know at rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

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Food For Thought

As I mentioned last month, Matt and I recently moved into a new apartment. We have it set up and decorated and feel completely at home. But there was just one thing missing. Now that we have a deck, we realized we definitely needed a grill.

And so we went and got one. As a side note, never will I ever opt out of delivery and set up again. What a pain. Mainly for Matt, but, I sympathize.

Anyway, I love to cook. Matt loves to grill. So it was a wonderful treat when he came up with the idea to do a themed, all grilled, three course dinner. Every course had to have a grilled aspect to it. Since he's the grill master, he was in charge. He even found a cocktail that met the criteria!

We started with grilled tomato bruschetta. Matt charred halved cherry tomatoes on the grill before mixing them with fresh garlic, red wine vinegar, red pepper flakes, and fresh basil. Then, he scooped spoonfuls of the mixture onto grilled slices of rustic country bread. So. Good.

I could have filled up on our appetizer, but I'm glad I didn't, because Matt proceeded to serve up perfectly grilled filet mignon with roasted sweet potatoes and asparagus. Such a treat.

SmoresSpeaking of treats. Dessert might have been my favorite. I have a major sweet tooth. S'mores made on the grill. Does that even need a description? I should go make one right now.

On top of a truly delicious meal, Matt found a recipe for, get this, grilled lemonade. Matt sliced lemons in half and dipped them in sugar before grilling them for just over five minutes. As they were cooling, he heated sugar, honey, and rosemary into a syrup. Then, I watched as he squeezed the grilled lemons into a pitcher, added the infused syrup and water, and then added just a touch of my favorite spirit, Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey. Our tall glasses were garnished with a lemon slice and a sprig of rosemary and we literally had a grilled cocktail to round out our grilled dinner.

June 2013

June News

Happy summer! As usual, a new season brings a new menu in the restaurant. Check out the restaurant section of this newsletter for a sneak peak at just a few of the new, and returning items on our summer dinner menu.There will also be two special events this month in the bar involving our cocktail menu so keep an eye on your inbox for upcoming invitations.

The summer months are the perfect time to take full advantage of our traditional soda fountain. Last month we welcomed some new additions to that menu as well so be sure to check them out if you haven't already!

My Food for Thought this month revolves around the new grill that Matt and I just got for the new apartment. It inspired us to go with a theme dinner that was definitely the highlight of our Monday last week.

Read on to find one of my favorite, and very useful recipes for summer, or any season for that matter, and to find out whose turn it is to receive a very special congratulations!

Enjoy this month and keep in touch!

Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery

Aside from stopping by the soda fountain to check out our new additions, or to pick up and old favorite, the bakery will be your best friend for many more reasons this summer. The hot weather has started early this year, which means so will the BBQs. Whether or not you believe in arriving fashionably late, everyone should believe in contributing to the feast.

Logo Cutting BoardThe deli case changes regularly offering perfect BBQ sides that will make you the perfect guest. Choose from a variety of different types of salads including mixed green house, fruit, chick pea, tomato & mozzarella, roasted potato, summer sweet corn, the list goes on and on.

Fellow sweet tooth? What's a BBQ without dessert? Pick up a fruit tart or a platter of cookies to complete the meal at your destination. If you find yourself torn, the staff is always willing to help you create the perfect mix of items.

And the Restaurant

Come and try our new summer dinner menu!

This season, welcome back some seasonal favorites, like our Caribbean Surf & Turf (crisp pork tenderloin topped with shrimp in a mango lime margarita sauce) and Maine Scallop and Lump Crab Ceviche (with melon lime jalepeno marinade). But also embrace our newest additions including:

Ginger Duck Breast - with "Poor Man's Pad Thai" noodles (remember those from last month's newsletter?!)

Grilled Scallops - with sweet creamed corn, pancetta, & fresh asparagus

&

Penne "Semi" Alfredo - with English peas, yellow squash, sundried tomato, lemon, and parmesan

There's plenty more to try on the new menu too so grab a friend and your appetite and come over!

Also, keep your eyes peeled for some fun events coming up soon in the bar! I'll be sending you email notifications as we get closer. Think free, delicious cocktails and decide if you're interested ...


 

Recipe of the Month: M&D's Dijon VinaigretteSalad Dressing

Tastes great on greens, pasta salad or makes a fantastic marinade for grilled meats. Not hard to make either!

32 oz extra virgin olive oil
12 oz apple cider vinegar
6 oz Dijon mustard
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground white pepper
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
2 cloves of minced garlic
1 oz sugar

Combine all ingredients except for the oil and mix well. Slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking until incorporated. Enjoy!

We use this in the restaurant on the house salad complete with mixed field greens, diced pears, crumbled Stilton Bleu Cheese, and spiced pecans. But after recently making it at home, it really does mix well with pasta salad, especially if you are going to an outdoor summer party where a mayo base dressing wouldn't quite last, and make a great meat marinade - try it with grilled chicken!

Another VERY Special Congratulations!

Bar Scene

"After months of scouring the country and searching for America's top talent behind the bar, the United States Bartenders' Guild and Diageo World Class U.S. proudly announce the 20 individuals selected to compete in the second World Class U.S. Finale."

That quote was taken directly from the United States Bartenders Guild website, sponsored by Diageo. Guess who one of those top 20 finalists are. Our very own Andrew Sarubbi.

He will be mid competition in New York City the day this newsletter is sent out, and a couple days following as well so think positive, winning thoughts for our beloved Andrew. And CONGRATULATIONS for making it this far!

Let me know at rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

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Food For Thought

After I graduated college, I landed a job with a relocation company in Delaware. I still can't get over the fact that graduation was a year ago, but I digress.

Anyway, every day at work I learn something new about the proper way to move. How to pack electronics, how to properly wrap stemware, things to remember before your move, etc. My boyfriend, Matt, and I moved to a new apartment this past month and I was more than confident that I was on top of my game in terms of preparation.

As irritating as I'm sure I was to Matt, dictating how things should be packed and labeled, our move was incredibly easy. Every box was labeled with exactly what it contained and which room it belonged in. After only a couple days, we were almost 100 percent unpacked and settled.

I was ready to pat myself on the back and pride myself on everything I learned at work until dinner time rolled around on moving day.

Our refrigerator was nothing short of depressing. Luckily, my favorite website, Pinterest, came to the rescue yet again.

In what Matt and I have started calling "Poor Man's Pad Thai," the two of us were still able to have a delicious dinner out on our new deck on our first night in the new place.

"Poor Man's Pad Thai," for anyone who finds themselves in our situation or has their interest peaked by the recipe I'm about to share, is incredibly easy to make and is by far my favorite way to eat Ramen Noodles.

Make one pack of chicken flavored Ramen as the packaged directs, except drain out most of the water. Add a tablespoon of peanut butter, two tablespoons of soy sauce (we had some extra packets), and one to two teaspoons of Sriracha Chili Sauce (depending on how much you like spicy food). Top with some crushed peanuts and chopped green onion and voila!

Believe me, I understand your hesitancy. Being the daughter of a chef, Ramen Noodles have never been too high on my list of desired meals. But I promise you, this is different. If you're ever feeling lazy and don't want to spend too much time in your kitchen, or don't feel like food shopping, this really is delicious.

June 2013

May News

I'm going to go ahead and say we are officially done with the winter weather. Does this sunshine have anyone else smiling like a fool the same way it has me doing so? There's just something about the spring.

Anyway, with the warm weather comes new additions to the Soda Fountain and the return of some of our summer favorites in both the bakery and the restaurant. We'll also take a behind the scenes peak at another one of our beloved suppliers and I'll tell you a story about how Matt and I turned Ramen into something worth writing home about.

I hope you're all sneaking some time away from work to get outside for at least a few minutes every day!

Enjoy this month and keep in touch!

Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery

We may not be experiencing that summer heat quite yet, but that doesn't mean you can't stop by and pick something up from the Soda Fountain. Chrissy tells me we have some great new additions to the menu!

"NOLA Nectar" Soda
Based on a New Orleans soda fountain classic, this drink combines a homemade vanilla bean, almond, & orange infused syrup with seltzer from our fountain.

New & Improved Egg Cream
Made with a homemade vanilla bean syrup, you get the taste of a bubbly vanilla milkshake without all the extra calories

Coffee Egg Cream
Homemade coffee syrup combined with milk & seltzer for a fresh twist on one of our favorite classics

Blended Ice Cream Soda
Traditionally called a "Yip," you choose you favorite flavor of ice cream and soda syrup and the girls will blend them together with seltzer to create a light, bubbly alternative to a milkshake

And for those of you who were wondering, the frozen lemonade will also be making its return this season.

And the Restaurant

I've been waiting all year to hear this news - it is officially Summer White Sangria Season! Andrew informed me that he just made his first batch the other day. I am not exaggerating when I say that this stuff sells faster than it can be made. Get in and try it.

Keep a look out towards the end of this month for our new dinner menu as well. It's still in the works right now so I don't have any secrets to share, but feel free to contact me once it's out and let me know your new favorites.

 

Huntley Farms: Much More Than Maple Syrup

All of our vendors and suppliers are very important to us. We love supporting fellow family businesses and we love to share their stories.

The following story is one that goes back several generations. It is a true product of entrepreneurship and passion for a quality product. It is the story of the maple service we serve with your Strawberry Cream Cheese pancakes, or Belgian Waffle.

I was lucky enough to chat with Dan Huntley, owner of Huntley Farms, for a few minutes on the phone last weekend. After hearing bits and pieces of the tale behind the farm and the syrup, Dan told me that he would be happy to write the story up and send it to me. Because Dan's story is rich in history and wonderful detail, I thought it would be best to share it with you in his words. Read an excerpt from his story, in his words, below, or click the link at the bottom of this article to read the whole thing (highly recommended)

"My Father and Grandfather would tell stories of going to the barn early mornings with lanterns, and milking the cows by hand.

The stories of the most interest to me were during the depression years, this was a time in our Northern NY region prior to electricity and today's modern conveniences. Survival for most farm homesteads were living self-sufficient by living off the land. Little income came from cows, pigs, and eggs from chicken.

Additional income came from knitting wear and maple syrup. Most farms in this region of the Adirondack foothills had a dairy and woods for maple production. During this time, all maple sap was collected by bucket and transported by horses. The evaporation arches were fired with wood and syrup was stored and distributed in metal cans."

Dan's story, read about the history of Hunt Rarm Maple Syrup: Huntley Farm Maple Syrup Story

Dan's wife, Chris, was nice enough to send me some great pictures. You see Dan Huntley, his wife, their two kids, and Dan's mother. Check out the picture below to see the evaporator mentioned in Dan's story.

Huntley Farm Maple Syrup

If you're ever in the market for some real, rich, delicious maple syrup (and who isn't just about every Sunday morning?), give the Huntley Farms a call at 315-386-2336

A VERY Special Congratulations!

Shannon McKinney - Best Chefs of America

I would like to take a moment to say congratulations to Mr. Shannon McKinney, aka Dad, for being listed in a new book entitled Best Chefs in America!

This book, just recently published, lists chefs by state and region that have been highly recommended by fellow chefs around the nation. Take a look at this excerpt from the book:

"Chefs know best. Better than food writers, or any type of Internet survey, chefs know who are the "best chefs" in their hardworking, demanding, and creative profession. With this in mind, we set out to call chefs across the United States, and conduct thousands of one-on-one confidential interviews to find out who chefs considered to be the 'best' among their peers."

I could not be more proud of my father. Oh wait, did I mention that less than 1% of all chefs and professional cooks in America made the book. Ok, NOW I could not be more proud!

Let me know at rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

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Food For Thought

A lot of my friends around here have spring and summer birthdays. I happen to be a huge fan of birthdays, whether it be my own, or a good friends'. I tend to go a bit overboard with sweet treats and little gifts. This spring however, Matt and I are moving to a new apartment. With the cost of moving as well as a looming security and pet deposit and a couple months rent up front, my budget doesn't leave much room for gifts. So, I decided to go with baked goods and homemade goodies for my friends instead. Lollipop Bouquet

I still wanted these treats to be unique and fun though, so I did not go the ordinary cupcake or ice cream cake route. Instead, I used my favorite tool, Pinterest, to get ideas.

For my one friend, I decided to go with a sparkles theme. Pinterest enlightened me with the fact that you can buy edible glitter. Cupcakes just got kicked up a notch with hot pink glitter covering the homemade cream cheese frosting.

My other April birthday friend is not a fan of baked goods. That kind of put a damper on my baking spree until I found the idea of a lollipop bouquet. Done and done.

June 2013

April News

Happy Spring! I hope everyone enjoyed their holiday. I think I am still full from Easter Dinner.Thank you to all ofthose who emailed me with their Easter traditions. I cannot wait to share them with my nephew in the coming years.

Sun FlowerThis month, it is my honor to fill all of you in on what my wonderful friend Andrew has been up to outside of McKinney and Doyle. His mixology talents have taken him further than I even knew possible. Read the section titled "The Calvados Nouvelle Vogue Competition" for all the details. As a quick side note, Calvados is an apple brandy from the French region of lower Normandy. Keep that in mind as you read his story.

The bakery is in full spring mode with beautiful sprinkled cookies and a well stocked soda fountain.

Check out Food for Thought for some fun spring birthday treat ideas on a budget.

This month's newsletter will also share a short insight into the who, what, when, where, and how we get the seafood for our dinner specials.

Enjoy this month and keep in touch!

Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery

Soda Jerk Shannon

I love springtime in the bakery. Sprinkled tulip shaped sugar cookies are the perfect lunch time or after work pick me up. Plus, as the weather gets nicer, it feels more appropriate to take advantage of the soda fountain.

A nice chocolate malt or hot fudge sundae makes the perfect ending to a long week.

The Calvados Nouvelle Vogue Competition

I am beyond excited to announce that our very own Andrew Sarubbi competed in the 17th annual Calvados Calvados Nouvelle Vogue LogoNouvelle Vogue Competition! This year was the first in all 17 years that the United States was even able to participate in this cocktail competition so you can imagine our excitement over the fact that Andrew not only competed, but made it to the final five competitors!Andrew the Mixologist

We all know how talented Andrew is with his mixology skills. But let me outline the details of this particular competition. All participants had to design an original cocktail using Calvados as the only liquor and a maximum of six ingredients total, including the garnish. House made syrups and infusions were prohibited for all.

Andrew submitted his recipe back in February. It was comprised of fresh kumquats, Calvados, Fire Cider (a New England style tonic using apple cider vinegar, organic horseradish root, honey, lemon, oranges, ginger, and habanero), Jerry Thomas Decanter Bitters, agave nectar, and Fever Tree Bitter Lemon Soda. He called it The Calvados Switchel, based on the first ever known recipe printed in the Savoy Cocktail Book of 1930. Are you impressed yet? I was.

All contestants submitted their recipes to The Calvados Council in France. Next, only the top five were selected to compete in New York. As I mentioned, Andrew's recipe was among those five.

Andrew, accompanied by my dad, arrived at the Intercontinental New York Barclay on the day of the competition at 12:30. The final five were given one hour to set up and make 30 one ounce pours of their cocktails for the press. I can only imagine the chaos in the air.

Next, each participant was given an opportunity to present aloud their concoction. Andrew had two minutes to discuss the history of Calvados and how it intergrated into his ingredients to create the best cocktail. He then had a total of seven minutes to prepare four full drinks in front of the judges. He was scored on technique, skill, presentation, following specific guidelines and of course, flavor.

An hour after all contestants presented, the judges had decided on a winner who would be sent to Normandy to compete internationally. Though Andrew did not win this opportunity, it was a huge accomplishment to make it to the final five. We could not be more proud of him and we know he will have many more opportunities in the future.

 

Just for the Halibut

It has always been important for people to know where the food they eat comes from. But now, more than ever, people are curious about where and how restaurants get their main ingredients, specifically seafood.

Halibut and Cruz CabanasWell, we can answer that. M&D gets our seafood from Select Seafood. More specifically from a supplier turned friend known as "Jimmy Fish."

Jimmy arrives at the fish market at around 1 am every morning to check out the daily catch. He then gives us a call and fills us in on what looks good. Jimmy's recommendations help my dad and the other chefs decide on the specials for the restaurant. After that early morning discussion, Jimmy has the day's catch delivered to the kitchen by 10am.

Our head chef, Cruz Cabanas, is holding a 45 pound North Atlantic Halibut provided by Jimmy Fish. It was caught off the Nova Scotia Peninsula near Cape Breton Island.

Do you have any other fun DIY birthday treat ideas?

Let me know at rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

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Food For Thought

This month, I decided to go in a bit of a different direction for Food for Thought. Back in September, my extremely adorable and perfect (biased alert) nephew, Jacob, was born. I instantly fell in love with him and have since been planning fun activities that I can do with him as his only Aunt.

Though Jacob is too young right now to participate in the following activities, I thought it would be nice to share them with those of you who have children, nieces or nephews, or grandchildren that are of the right age.

Easter Eggs
One of my favorite things to do as a kid was decorate Easter eggs. My mom and dad would always set me up at our kitchen table with a bowl of hard boiled eggs and a PAAS set. My eggs always came out the same: sloppy with too many colors dripping together. But my parents would still display them proudly at Easter Dinner.

When Jacob is old enough, I want him to experience the same tradition. But as I started to look into it, I learned about some other ideas too! Maybe we can share old traditions and make some new ones.

I found this article that offers 9 unique Easter Egg decorating ideas. I highly suggest giving it a skim. I will definitely be teaching Jacob to make baby bird and bunny Easter Eggs!

Baking cookies is always a great holiday tradition as well. After years of babysitting I know for a fact that little kids LOVE to bake and decorate cookies. I also know that there aren't many households that have the tools to decorate a cookie. Luckily, I have mastered creating piping bags out of every day objects.

Do you have a Ziplock bag and a pair of scissors? Then you have a piping bag. Fill the baggie with frosting, cut the corner, and voila! Piping bag. Now you can draw faces, outline shapes, write messages, whatever you want! I can't wait to help Jacob make a mess with this.

What Easter traditions do you have with the children in your life?

March 2013

March News

March 11-24: My favorite two weeks of the year ... Hudson Valley Restaurant Week! Read the restaurant section of this month's newsletter for details on how we'll be participating. You can also check out what other restaurants are participating here!

March is also a great month for the bakery. Not only is it the most popular month for our famous Irish Soda Bread, but this year, we also get to bake our Easter cookies a little early. Easter is March 31, and we are ready! Read the bakery section to find out how we've prepared for both holidays.

I'll also be taking Food for Thought in a different direction. Check it out under the Restaurant Week Dinner Menu.

Enjoy this month and keep in touch!

Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

In The Bakery

Easter LogoThis year we get to celebrate St. Patrick's Day and Easter just two weeks apart. The Easter holiday order form/menu is available online and in the store now.Shamrock

The best part about St. Patrick's Day? The Irish Soda Bread of course! Stop by and pick up whatever version you'd like: Traditional with caraway seeds and raisins, raisins but no seeds, seeds no raisins, whole wheat, and golden raisins. You name it, we've got it!

The bakery is already stocked with our Easter chocolate bunnies, and speckled chocolate malt ball "eggs."

Aside from the holiday specials, the bakery is now carrying items from "Fred & Friends" for your kitchen. Look on our shelves for their unique products that bring a little fun to your daily tasks. The products will change regularly so keep checking back!

You can also find some new jams, jellies, and marmalade on the shelves. These new additions are all hand crafted in small batches from Winding Drive Jams in Woodbury, Connecticut. Nothing like homemade jam on an English Muffin on a Sunday morning.

Restaurant Week • March 11-24, 2013

Click here to view the Restaurant Week Menu

It's impossible not to enjoy Hudson Valley Restaurant Week. Even if you ate out for every meal, every day of the two weeks, you still wouldn't hit all of your options!

Take a look at the 2013 Hudson VAlley Restaruant Week Menu If you decide to dine with us during Restaurant Week, you can enjoy our regular menu OR choose the pre-fixed menu at a set price.

We'll have our Restaurant Week lunch menu available during our regular lunch hours. For $20.95 you can choose three courses.

We'll have our Restaurant Week lunch menu available during our regular dinner hours between March 11-24. You will have the option of selecting a three course pre-fixed meal between 5 and 9 pm on Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday for just $29.95.
Click here to have a look at the Hudson Valley Restaurant lunch and dinner menu.

Do you have any other fun DIY birthday treat ideas?

Let me know at rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

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Food For Thought

I spent this past weekend with my friend Cassie. Our boyfriends were both losing all of their money in Las Vegas so we decided to lose ours too. However, we spent our money at the mall and one other place - an organic grocery store.

Cassie was telling me about the Paleo Diet that she has been following for the past several months. Basically, she doesn't eat any dairy or grains. The focus is on protein, fruits, and vegetables. At first I was skeptical - being that I absolutely adore pasta and bread - but I decided to give it a try.

We made delicious omelets and spicy stir fry, but my very favorite was the sundae we were able to make with coconut milk ice cream. After roaming every isle in the organic grocery store we both left with bags full of Paleo friendly snacks - including the chocolate coconut milk ice cream that I really think you should all go out and try. It Trader Joe's Chocolate Frozen Yogurtwas creamy, rich, dairy free, and absolutely amazing. Coming from the biggest sweet tooth of all time, you should take that very seriously.

While I enjoyed the Paleo recipes Cassie shared with me, when Super Bowl Sunday rolled around, I had to go with what I knew. Fried, spicy, and the opposite of healthy.

My friend Alana had a small get together to watch the game, which was really an excuse for the girls to get together, pig out, laugh at the commercials and envy Beyonce during halftime.

We each brought something to snack on. I decided on buffalo chicken wonton tacos. Spicy breaded chicken, sauteed onions, and blue cheese.

Cassie helped me put these together and after a few failed attempts with the wonton wrappers, we finally got it down to a science.

From dairy free to junk food overload, I had a great Super Bowl weekend with Cassie.

Febuary 2013

February News

M&D Logo Valentines DayI hope everyone is staying nice and warm this winter! I cannot wait for spring. I've been passing the time in the kitchen, trying out a TON of new recipes. This month I'll take some time to fill you in on my experience with the Paleo Diet that has been gaining popularity this year. Then we'll travel to the opposite end of the spectrum to discuss the Super Bowl diet I tried out on game day.

You know those coffee commercials that show a man hand picking beans in an exotic jungle? While the process for producing high quality coffee is not quite so adventurous these days, there is a very noble story behind our favorite coffee bean provider, Noble Coffee Roasters (pun intended).

I hope you all had a fun Super Bowl Sunday! Feel free to contact me with some of your favorite football snacks. I'm always looking for something new to cook up in the kitchen!

Enjoy this month and keep in touch!

Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

Bakery & Restaurant News

February is always nice in the bakery and restaurant. The bakery is constantly making heart shaped sugar cookies with vibrant icing and chocolate "love notes" written on top. The restaurant is full of first dates, anniversary dinners, and longtime loves celebrating their umpteenth Valentine's Day together.

Treat your loved one to a box of tasty treats and personalized cookies professing your love from the bakery. Or bringCocktail them into the bar for some handcrafted cocktails.

The restaurant tends to book up on Valentine's Day so if you are unable to reserve a table, consider going out just one night early to enjoy the third of four Winter Locations Wine Series Dinners. On February 13, the menu will bring you flavors and wine varieties from regions of France.

Call or email Andrew for information on reservations at 845-855-3875 or Andrew@McKinneyandDoyle.com

Behind the Scenes:

Our Family at Noble Coffee Roasters

Noble Coffee Roasters Small businesses, specifically family businesses truly value their relationship with vendors. It is a special relationship, especially when the vendor is another family business. This is why I wanted to highlight Noble Coffee Roasters this month.

Like McKinney and Doyle, Noble opened up in 1986. My dad has been doing business with Jack Deckaj and his family for over 25 years now. Last week, I had the pleasure of speaking with Jack's son, Robert - who now runs the operations with his brother Paul.

When I called, Robert was downstairs roasting coffee beans. It was that fact that lead me to asking about how exactly he goes about making the product most of us can't go a day without.

Robert was the one who laughed and explained that it isn't quite as exotic as one may picture. But he admits that quality is of utmost importance to him and his family. The beans are constantly tasted to ensure high quality and consistent flavor. That, combined with constant customer feedback in their in house working cafe keeps Noble Coffee the best it can be and the only coffee ever served at McKinney and Doyle.

Their working cafe is not only a place for clients and patrons to relax with a hot cup of special roast coffee, but also a place to try different flavor cCoffee Dropsombinations to possibly provide to customers in THEIR business. What a great idea, right?!

Somewhere along this 25 year partnership, the business relationship became a friendship. Then that friendship turned into family as both Noble Coffee and McKinney and Doyle have truly grown up together. My dad even catered Paul's wedding!

If you're interested in trying out Noble's in house cafe, you can do so Monday through Saturday. Sit back, relax, and enjoy a classic roast or a new blend. You'll see why these guys have become like family.

Visit the Noble Roasters website.

Let me know at rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

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Food For Thought

I think it's safe to say that most of us have certain holiday traditions that we look forward to every year. Well this year was the first that I wasn't home with my family for an extended period of time during the holidays. I was disappointed at first, knowing that I would only get to spend a few days with them, but then I thought - what a perfect reason to start some new traditions.

Matt and I decided to have a pre-Christmas celebration at our apartment before we each traveled home to our families. So, for the first time, he and I chopped down our own tree and decorated it according to both of our family styles.

We hung lights and stockings and covered our windows in fake snow. We then decided that "our" Christmas would take place on December 20. It was close enough to the actual day so that we didn't feel like we were cheating, yet too soon for us to take off of work and drive home. Naturally, I wanted
a perfect meal to compliment our perfect apartment celebration.

The meal needed to be special and delicious. Lucky for me, I had two petite filet mignons in the freezer. (Ok, so it wasn't a coincidence, so what?) I decided to make my version of surf and turf. Garlic rubbed filet mignon topped with crumbled Gorgonzola and crispy fried onions and spicy grilled shrimp and vegetable kabobs.

I was excited. In fact, I had planned this meal back in November (hence the "lucky" find of frozen steak in the freezer).

Now, I need to be 100% honest here. I have the exact recipe for what I was planning on making for dinner that night. But Christmas is my very favorite holiday. I am giddy with excitement the moment Thanksgiving dinner is placed on the table.

So you can only imagine how anxious I was to exchange gifts by our very first Christmas tree. My excitement got the best of me and I didn't cook a thing. Instead, I called Mrs. Robino's Restaurant, an amazing Italian restaurant down the street, and ordered take out from salad to dessert.

And you know what? It was perfect.

January 2013

Happy New Year!

Friends CelebratingThis year, my New Year's Resolution is to indulge more. That's probably the opposite of what you are all used to hearing, but I'm sticking with it. I vow to never order just a salad when I am out to eat and to stop feeling guilty when I use real butter to cook. What do you want to do this year?

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season and are relaxed and rested now that it is all over. This month in Food for Thought I'll share with you my first Christmas celebration in my apartment. I learned that sometimes missing out on old traditions is really just the perfect time to create some new ones.

I'll also fill you in on what the bakery and restaurant are up to in early 2013. We'll also go behind the scenes in the bakery so I can tell you a little about two VERY dear friends of mine and irreplaceable components to McKinney and Doyle, the Vanturini sisters.

Enjoy this month and keep in touch!

Rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

– Best wishes, Becky McKinney

Bakery & Restaurant News

With the ever so common healthy living New Year's Resolution, you may be under the impression that you should avoid the bakery. But before you are quick to avert your eyes and keep moving, think about our deli case. On these long, cold, and dreary winter days, cooking isn't always the first thing we want to do when we get home. Swing by the bakery and pick up a quart of soup and a house salad. Easy, healthy, delicious. What more could you ask for?

Everybody knows diets go on hold for football Sundays. We have you covered there too with homemade chili, chips, and guacamole. Just something to think about.

Wine Stained MapsAs for the restaurant. There are a lot of great things coming up to help start your New Year off right! Andrew has put together four wine tasting events, each specific to a different region, with a five small course meal to compliment the wines. Each event will cover the region as a whole and will highlight the different grape varietals and region blends.

  • Wednesday, January 16 - Spanish
  • Wednesday, January 30 - Italian
  • Wednesday, February 13 - French
  • Wednesday, February 27 - New World

Each dinner will begin at 6:30 PM and costs $85 per person. Contact Andrew at the restaurant (845-855-3875) or via email (Andrew@mckinneyanddoyle.com) for reservations or questions.
Click here for more wine tasting dinner details.

Behind the Scenes:

Meet the Vanturini Sisters

Venturi SistersIt is no secret that the staff at McKinney and Doyle is close.
You can find many employees spending their days off together and their days on laughing and sharing jokes behind the counter. In past months you have learned a little bit about the history of Tony, Cruz, Andrew, and Chrissy. This month, I'd like to take some time to talk about two girls that are very near and dear to both my heart, and the heart of the bakery: Vicki and Christine Vanturini.

My family has known the Vanturini sisters for as long as I can remember. My parents got to know them through the Pawling Youth Hockey program as their brother, Dan played on a team with my brother, Ryan. Later on, I played on a team myself with both Christine and Vicki. Needless to say, our families are quite close.

When Christine, affectionately known as Chris, turned 14, my dad asked her mother if Chris could work in the bakery. She agreed and Chris has been a valuable and much loved employee for over 10 years. All through high school and part time through college, and today, Chris has helped to set the standard for our bakery girls.

Several years after Chris started in the bakery, her younger sister, Vicki was drafted as well. Today, Vicki is an assistant manager so it's obvious that her work is extremely valued as well.

My dad smiled fondly as he recalled carrying Vicki around the ice hockey rink as her mom volunteered in the snack shack. These two girls who are amazing friends, but feel more like my own sisters (in fact, Vicki and I are often confused for each other), have grown up in the bakery and restaurant right beside me and the entire staff at M&D is lucky to work with them.

Vicki's daughter, Avery, isn't even three years old yet and is already loved dearly by the entire staff and many loyal customers. Maybe we can luck out a third time and recruit her down the road!

Let me know at rebecca@mckinneyanddoyle.com

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To contact McKinney & Doyle, click here | 10 Charles Colman Boulevard | Pawling, New York 12564 | Bakery: 845-855-3707 | Cafe: 845-855-3875