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Shiso Overload

9 Sep

The sun shines bright on shiso-basil pesto.

We’ve been getting the most delicious produce ever from Alegría Farms, a vertical hydroponic farm that popped up in Laguna Canyon. Twice a week we get a beautiful bouquet of lettuces, chard, kale, collard greens and plenty of herbs. (And the tomatoes. OH the tomatoes! The taste is so good you could faint.) The Husband loved their green smoothies so much that he bought me a Vitamix, which means I’m a very happy girl. Continue reading

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Chocolate Caramel Brownies

1 Sep

Caramel and chocolate—a close second to peanut butter and chocolate!

I meant to post this last weekend, but it was a crazy few days filled with boring Quickbooks data entry, a visit to an awesome vertical farm in Laguna Canyon, drinks with my parents, two kids’ parties, a run around Lido Island and a stop at the Newport Beach farmer’s market.

You might be wondering how my paleo-style diet’s going, seeing as how these brownies are not on the menu at all, and I’m happy to say it’s going well. I made the brownies for the Laguna Beach Public Works Department, as they rescued my iPhone from certain death in a storm drain. Yes, I managed to drop my iPhone during a run which, combined with some unfortunate timing, bounced off my foot and straight down a storm drain. Continue reading

Triple-Green Zucchini Pasta With Broccoli-Arugula Pesto

15 Aug

I think I already mentioned that I’d taken a blood test to finally figure out what my food sensitivities are. It turns out that all grains are off the menu, as are soy, beans, legumes and dairy. Well, we knew about dairy already, so no surprises there.

But it made me think seriously about my diet. Beans, legumes (i.e. lentils, my absolute FAVES) and soy are some of the first things I reach for when I’m going for a vegetarian or vegan alternative. Er, those are out the window. Basically I’ve found out that my diet falls under the “Paleo” title, which makes it easier as there’s some cookbooks out there to inspire me.

Now, please don’t think that I’ve fallen for this whole “pre-agriculture everyone was healthy and that’s how we should eat now to avoid every ailment” theory. I know it’s not scientifically accurate, but that’s not what was bothering me. It was reintroducing meat into my diet.

Continue reading

Potato, Edamame and Mushroom Caribbean Curry

12 May

I was starting to get a little worried about keeping up with the Virtual Vegan Potluck (the brainchild of the wonderful Ann, a fellow blogger with a site “An Unrefined Vegan”. Brilliant idea!). When was I going to have time to whip up a new vegan recipe? And one that isn’t full of gluten, which I’m trying to avoid right now, plus one that The Husband was going to like. He’s not that fussy, but there are a few ingredients I need to work around.

And then I happened to make a mushroom risotto and a curry two nights in a row, both vegan, both delicious—well, that’s the opinion of yours truly and The Husband. I can’t vouch for anyone else’s tastebuds!

I’ve decided to post the curry because frankly, I’m a little obsessed. I’d probably eat just about anything if it was curried. My 11 years in London got me well and truly addicted to those spices and flavors that make up “curry”. I get a little annoyed—okay, A LOT annoyed—with people who say they “don’t like curry”. Continue reading

In Like a Lamb, Out Like a Lion: Lamb Shank in Adobo Sauce

7 Apr

I know that they say spring comes in like a lion, and out like a lamb, but this recipe will make it the opposite. It is so super flavorful that you could literally put this sauce on anything and make it delicious.

VEGANS/VEGETARIANS: Please have a look at this sauce! It’s totally vegan and SO delicious! I can’t wait to use it on tofu, tempeh or jackfruit for tacos! Just ignore the stuff about the lamb. Please.

And this one goes out to Girl in a Food Frenzy, because I know she’s “down under” and likes lamb as much as I do. I also think my friends in the UK will love this too (well, Tracey won’t love the lamb part). I’m not sure if they’ll be able to get all the special dried chiles over there unless they order them from the Internet… Continue reading

Vietnamese Garlic Black Pepper Sauce

5 Apr

The Husband was away last weekend on a trip with his friend, so I took the opportunity to make something with tofu. My friends in the blogosphere have come up with so many tantalizing recipes frankly I was overwhelmed with choice. Plus I knew I had a bunch of Asian veggies in the fridge that needed to be used up, so it seemed to make sense to throw together a stir fry.

I didn’t feel like making a Chinese sauce, and I remembered the garlic sauce from Thai Bros. around the corner that I had tasted just a week or so prior. I had a hankering for it, and thought I could probably whip it up myself if I had a guide. Continue reading

Chive and Spinach Pesto

25 Mar

Quinoa pasta with chive-spinach pesto

When I lived in London, I was able to grow the following on a fifth-story balcony: blueberries, radishes, green onions, tomatoes, thyme and rosemary. When I lived in Santa Barbara, I had a 10′ x 12′ garden full of everything from corn to potatoes to zucchini. In my “backyard” in Laguna Beach? I can barely grow anything. I’m not sure why Laguna Beach has turned by green thumb brown, but I’m not happy.

But there’s one thing that grows like crazy in the back—chives. Continue reading