I am so late to the game! First with the quinoa, now with the kale. I’ve always sauteed kale or put it in soups but only recently have I begun to eat it in raw salads. There’s a place near my office that does kale salad with an avocado (not caesar) dressing but whenever I eat it, I find myself sympathizing with cows. The chewing required is absurd and tedious. What I learned from making the Smitten Kitchen kale salad with pecorino and walnuts (substituting cranberries for raisins, now a requested favorite among my carnivorous extended family) is that the secret to kale salad is removing the ribs and thinly slicing the leaves. Over time, I’ve figured out a faster way of doing this–the leaves are so sturdy that you can pinch the bottom of the stem and zip your fingers along the stem and the leaves will come right off! Roll everything into a rough ball and chiffonade away… Read more…
We just got back from our belated honeymoon in Peru: a few days acclimating to the altitude in Cusco, 4 days/3 nights hiking the Inca Trail, a few days relaxing at a resort & spa in the Sacred Valley and then New Year’s Even and another few days eating my weight in ceviche in Lima.
I knew the Inca Trail would be a personal challenge but at no point did I ever hit a wall, as I often do while running. Hiking the Inca Trail was an amazing experience: it allowed me the time to reflect on my own life, learn about the history of the Quechua/Inca, practice my terrible Spanish, and take in some crazy views that I will probably never experience again in this lifetime. When we finally arrived to Machu Picchu, I never wanted to leave…except a beer, shower and clean bed (in that order) sounded pretty good. Read more…
Recipes from the Ad Hoc cookbook are fussy. Each recipe features a bunch of sub-recipes (for this one, you have to follow other recipes for pickled onions, a sachet, boiled chickpeas and dressing). Sure, they taste good but is it really worth it? I can never remember to soak my dried chickpeas the night before and even if I do, plans often change the following day and I end up with sprouted chickpeas that ultimately end up in the compost. Read more…
This is one of those recipes borne from avoiding waste that turned into something we will be eating more often this summer. I had 6 ears of corn, 3 spicy italian sausages and a bunch of parsley that was originally earmarked for a family dinner which was postponed. I didn’t want it to go bad so I pivoted and figured on a grilled corn salad and a parsley vinaigrette based on the more conventional cilantro-lime vinaigrette. I also didn’t have enough lime for the dressing so I supplemented with some lemon from the neighbor’s tree and wine vinegar. I’m sure any herb and any vinegar would do in a pinch. I also had cotija cheese in the drawer and chopped up some Mexican pickles (carrots, jalapenos and radish) for a little something extra. Work with what you have! Read more…
This weekend, I ordered a lobster and wild mushroom frittata at brunch. Though it was rather mediocre, it inspired me to steam my first lobster.
Later in the day, we stopped at the Asian seafood market and picked up a 2.5 lb lobster. When I got home, he went straight into the freezer for a nap while I looked up how to steam a lobster. I settled with 1-2 inches of water, a pile of salt, and a few slices of lime. When the water started to boil, I snipped off the rubber bands securing his claws, dropped him into the pot and put the lid on. The freezer treatment must have worked because he was a lot less feisty than the crabs that I don’t usually have enough space for. Read more…
As you can see, we’ve been eating a lot of salads lately. We roast a chicken on Sunday night which gives us both a few salads for lunch and dinner throughout the week. One of my favorite new dressings is a honey mustard vinaigrette. The honey is from the farmer’s market and everything else is already in my pantry.
I used an almost empty bottle of mustard to not waste the last bits stuck inside. It also doubled as serving and storage–resourcefulness learned from my mom. It is the little things like this that remind me of her and make me miss her every day.
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 3 Tbsps vinegar
- 2 Tbsps water
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup mustard
- 1/2 tsp dried basil
- 3/4 tsp salt
- black pepper to taste
Mix it all together and pour on top of your salad for a sweet and tangy dressing!
I try not to eat too much tuna these days due to excessive mercury levels but once in a while…
Yes, more arugula salad. This time with ahi tuna prepared two ways: simply seared with salt and pepper, and then poke (salt, chiles, sesame oil and seaweed). I added heirloom cherry tomatoes and roasted mushrooms and tomatoes and topped it all off with miso dressing.
We had this while watching football…a stark contrast to the type of stuff we ate while watching football in Chicago (like buffalo chicken dip).