Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Watermelon Gazpacho

Purchased a mediocre watermelons so, I decided to make watermelon gazpacho. This dish reminds me of My dear friend, Karen, who first introduced me to the recipe.

• 8 cups (6 lbs) of cubed watermelon
• 1 medium cubed cucumber (remove skin and seeds)
• 1/2 diced bell pepper
• 1 tbsp minced shallots
• 1/4 cup parsley
• 1/4 cup green onions (optional, I just had extra greens to use)
• 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
• 2 tbsp EVOO
• salt and pepper to taste

• Combine all ingredients
• Place 1/3 cup at a time into blender. Blend until your desired consistency.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Purple Kale Chips

• purple kale, seasonal
• sea salt

• preheat oven to 350 degrees
• wash and pat dry kale, then remove the stem by cutting an upside down "v" along the parameter of the stem.
• drizzle EVOO and sprinkle sea salt
• bake for 10 min or until they are crisp and brown

Stone Fruit Kale Salad

• kale
• sliced stone fruit (I used plums)

• 2 tbsp EVOO
• 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
• 1 tbsp honey (add more if you like it sweet)
• 1 tbsp fresh squeezed orange juice
• orange zest
• salt and pepper

• Toss and eat!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Grilled Heirloom Tomatoes with Polenta

• sliced heirloom tomatoes
• grated cheddar cheese (you can use any cheese really)
• sliced polenta (I used the Trader Joe's brand)
• butter
• olive oil
• salt and pepper

• Grill polenta until brown, then the tomatoes briefly (20 seconds).
• Place polenta on the bottom, then later the cheese and tomatoes. Drizzle evoo and add salt and pepper for flavor.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Summer Sweet Slaw

Summer Sweet Slaw

  • 1/2 head of cabbage (sliced thinly) or a package of coldslaw mix
  • 1 cup apples (matchsticks)
  • 1/2 cup fresh corn
  • 1/4 cup pineapple juice
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup mayonaise
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  1. Combine the cabbage or coleslaw mix, apples, and corn in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk together the pineapple juice, sugar, mayonaise, and salt in a medium bowl; blend thoroughly. Pour dressing mixture over coleslaw mix and toss to coat. Chill at least 2 hours before serving.

Fried Chicken Recipe for the 4th!

Buttermilk Fried Chicken and
Leftover Fried Chicken Sandwich

Nothing says 4th of July quite like fried chicken.  Or better yet, a day- after cold fried chicken sandwich.  The sweetness of the potato bread really makes the sandwich, but you can use Hawaiian buns too.  

Recipe serves 10

2 whole chickens, 8 pc cut
2 quarts buttermilk
4 cups all purpose flour
1 large bunch of thyme
1 bunch rosemary
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
3 lemons, zested
2 tablespoons salt, divided
2 tablespoons black pepper, divided
1 loaf potato bread, or 1 package Hawaiian buns
1 lb. bacon, fried and cooled or room temperature
1/2 lb. cheddar cheese
dijon mustard
mayonnaise (optional)

Season chicken with salt and pepper.  Soak chicken overnight in buttermilk, thyme, and rosemary.  

Combine flour, lemon zest, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper.  Dredge chicken through dry mixture and set aside.  Dip in buttermilk mixture again and dredge in dry mixture a second time.  

Fry in vegetable oil at 350 degrees until chicken is golden brown.  If internal temperature of chicken has not yet reached 165 degrees, finish in oven.  

Cool fried chicken on a cooling rack.  Paper towels make the chicken soggy and are unsafe around hot oil.  

Enjoy warm as a main dish or make a cold sandwich with the leftovers of sliced chicken, bacon, cheddar cheese, dijon mustard, and mayonnaise if you're feeling really indulgent.  

Happy 4th of July!  

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Strawberry Black Kale Salad with Pork Chops

Strawberry Black Kale Salad 

  • 1 bundle of black kale
  • strawberries (as many as you like)
  1. Wash kale and pat dry.
  2. Remove stem, role each leaf like a cigar and do a rough chop through the kale. Confused? See demo below.
  3. Cut strawberries into quarters.

Vinaigrette Dressing

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Honey
  • 1 tsp Lemon/lime juice
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Northwoods Fire Pork Chops

  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp chipotle pepper
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 cup bbq sauce
  • 6 lean pork chops
  1. Mix the first 8 ingredients-- this is your dry rub into a large bowl. 
  2. Season pork chops.
  3. Place pork chops in a large ziplock bag, along with 1 cup of bbq sauce.
  4. Let it marinade for 1-2 hours.
  5. Grill each side for approximately 6 minutes.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Couple Cooking Class (CCC)

This north downtown neighborhood was completely desolated as we entered a Manhattan-styled loft for our first cooking class. A completely open space with the kitchen as its center piece, we spent the next 3 hours learning, cooking, and eating!

Kabocha Squash Soup with Crispy Prosciutto


Kabocha Squash
yellow onion, diced
garlic, crushed
olive oil
thin prosciutto, julienned
chicken or vegetable stock


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut Squash in half and remove seeds. Rub with olive
oil and salt and place flesh down on a roasting sheet. Roast until tender, about 30

Heat a large stock pot on medium. Add olive oil and saute the onions and garlic, about
5 minutes until lightly browned. Add stock and continue to cook onions and garlic in

Heat a medium skillet, add olive oil and fry pancetta until crispy. Set aside.

When squash is cooked, cool slightly and scoop out flesh into the warm stock. Cook
another 10 minutes until well incorporated into the broth. Puree and season to taste
with salt and pepper.

Berry Good Smoothie

Now that I have Vitamix, I've gotten really into smoothies!

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 4 fresh/ frozen strawberries
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup coconut water
  • 1 tbsp flaxseed oil
  • tsp fresh lime juice
  • handful of dried goji berries


  • Blend all ingredients!

Homemade Horchata

Homemade Horchata (vegan, gluten free, soy free)
Makes about 7 cups

1 cup raw cashews (or use raw or blanched almonds)
2/3 cup white rice (medium or long-grain preferred)
2 1/2 cups water + 3 cups water
one 3-inch cinnamon stick
2/3 cup sugar, or to taste*
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (increase to 1 teaspoon, or to taste, if you love vanilla)

In a large blender canister, Vita-Mix canister, or large bowl combine cashews, rice, 2 1/2 cups warm tap water, cinnamon stick, cover and place in the refrigerator for 8 to 12 hours. Remove canister from the refrigerator, remove the cinnamon stick, and blend the mixture for 2 to 3 minutes on high speed, or until blended as smoothly as possible. Then add sugar (to taste), vanilla extract, 3 cups more water and blend again for 2 more minutes, or until mixture is as smooth as possible. If desired, strain horchata through a sieve or cheesecloth (I did not find it necessary as the cashews blended incredibly smoothly in my Vita-Mix).

Serve immediately as is, over ice, or refrigerate and serve chilled, shaking before if mixture has separated. Horchata will keep in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days; use common sense.

Special thanks to Dolores for sharing this with me!