There is an eloquent tale about the difference between Heaven and Hell. It is said that in both places, the occupants are presented with opulent tables laden with exotic foods and given four-foot long utensils with which to eat. In Hell, people are miserable and starving because they cannot imagine how to get food to their mouths with such long forks. In Heaven, the people are joyful and well fed. They use the same forks to feed each other.
- Epilogue from Leo Buscaglia's "Love Cookbook"

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

                             Fruit & Vegetable Delivery!

My first shipment of local fruit and vegetables came to my doorstep last night!  Perfect timing.....triathlon season is just starting!  My dear friend Rose gave me a great idea.  Since the deliveries will be made up with whatever is fresh, good, and plentiful in our area.......I will always be surprised by what's in the box.  And to me, nothing is more fun than making up new healthy recipes!

The first thing I noticed was an odd shaped root vegetable.  I researched online and it turned out to be a jerusalem artichoke (or often called a sunchoke).  It looks like this:

Here's a photo......if you look closely, don't you see animals?  I see a little pig, a turtle, a cow, a pug!  Ok I'm losing it.  Anyway, I worked with what I have in the kitchen.  I scrubbed them clean, sliced them on a mandoline, tossed them in about 2 tbsp. of walnut oil, 1 tsp. smoked salt, 1 tsp. pepper, a small handful of chopped walnuts and 1/4 cup fresh snipped parsley.  Roast in the oven (about 425 degrees) and keep an eye on them, turning often.  Probably 30 minutes of total roasting.  Here's what you'll get:

Gorgeous!  Looks like apples, doesn't it?  This dish was delicious.  So happy to be introduced to sunchokes!  I sure hope they are in the box again next time....

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Naples, Florida

Naples.  Gorgeous sunsets.  Perfect weather.  Incredible shopping and restaurants.  Endless retired people living well.  Each morning except one, I ran a few miles, but a daily run nevertheless.  And one pilates class.  My inspiration in the kitchen after this trip would have to be minestrone soup.  My lovely Italian relatives cook well, and that's what I'm cooking up.  Recipe in the works!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Thursdays are spin class.  I bring my bike in the gym, and spin on the trainer.  Always a fantastic hour, and social, too.  I didn't feel as strong as usual today, but I know there are days like that.  I am so looking forward to triathlon season starting March 3rd.

Came home and made this beautiful salad, my reward for a great workout.  Power greens, avocado, tomato, and fresh fennel sliced thin on the mandoline.  I dressed it with the most amazing Meyer Lemon Olive Oil from , my favorite winery in Sonoma.  Also with their California Champagne Vinegar, spanish flor de sal, and cracked pepper.  One of the best salads I've ever made!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

I had an epiphany while kneading bread the other day.  I ground the wheat berries, combined the fresh & healthy ingredients, and started kneading.  I have always loved kneading.

So I realized half way through my 10 minutes, that I was lost in "bliss".  Completely without worries, and not thinking of anything except for the joy I was in at that minute, making bread.  Call me crazy.  But it made me blissfully happy.  And isn't that what life should be?  A series of happy moments....dosed of course with the not so happy moments?  "You have to take the good with the bad" my mama always says.  I have gotten off track so many times in my life where I'm either living in the past or the present.

And this time, I was simply kneading bread.  But this little thing was MY joy.  And to serve the bread to my family is further joy.  It' the simple things.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Chia Ginger Snaps (a.k.a. cow patties)

Yup....these cookies look like cow patties!  Well my playful recipe invention this morning tastes much, much better than it looks.  Ginger snaps are close to my heart and must go in the cookbook I'm working on.  They are my dear dad's favorite cookie, and mine, too.  However this morning I tried to make up an unusual recipe.  I used coconut oil.  I also tried almond flour mixed with oat flour instead of any wheat flour.  And I rolled the dough balls into chia seeds vs. sugar before baking.  I was in an adventurous mood, so there you go......the good news is that despite their appearance, these really do taste good.  No official recipe taster here.  In fact my blog will serve as my partner in learning what works, what doesn't.  So I'm a cookbook writer in-progress, and forgive me if I write any stinkers for recipes.  I'm evolving :)

1 and 1/2 cups almond flour
1 cup oat flour
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cloves

Beat together all of the wet ingredients first.  Then slowly add the dry ingredients (except for the chia seeds).  Make sure it is the right consistency. You should be able to scoop out a dough ball the size of a ping pong ball or smaller.  Roll each ball in the chia seeds.  Place on baking sheet and bake for approximately 8 minutes or until the edges look brown and crispy.

Cool completely.  Enjoy.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Italian Wine Tasting Party

The party is over!  Months of preparation, cooking, planning.....and now what?  Our Italian Christmas Wine Tasting party last night was a wonderful success, but now am left with a house full of left over food and feeling a bit of a let down.  Freezing what I can, time to think of the next event.  

Christmas Eve of the Seven Fishes, and then New Year's Day Polar Bear Dip in the lake & brunch.  It's creative thinking time!