Category Archives: recipes

Spanish Cauliflower Rice

One of the staples of a delicious Whole30 experience! I love cauliflower rice and if it is cooked with the correct pan it has little crispy bites in it. I use a flat griddle pan to cook mine. When you put the rice on the pan you spread it into a thin layer and the result will be crispy perfection.

I like to use colored cauliflower instead of white. The green or the orange make the prettiest faux rice blend.

You will need:

tools:

food processor, griddle pan

ingredients:

1 head cauliflower

2 TBSP. Ghee or olive oil

2 c. fresh Pico de Gallo , homemade or store-bought

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. red pepper flakes

Using a food processor fitted with the S blade:

Pull the cauliflower apart, breaking the florets from the stem.

Place the florets in the processor bowl but do not crowd them.

It is better to pulse a few batches then to accidentally make a puree!

Pulse the florets until they are coarsely chopped. It takes about 4-5 pulses. Be careful not to puree the pieces.

The florets will resemble grains of rice. Do this with all of the florets until all is riced!

Place the griddle pan over two burners and turn on medium -high heat.

Put in the oil or the ghee and let it melt all the way.

Make sure the bottom of the pan is coated with the oil or ghee.

Spread the pico de gallo over the bottom and let it cook for about three minutes.

Spread the cauliflower over the pico in a thin ,even layer .

Let it cook for about 4 minutes until it starts to brown turn it over in small batches and continue to let it cook, lifting and browning for about 5 minutes. it should still be slightly undercooked so it does not get mushy!

a delicious side dish to use again and again!

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Pasture Raised Eggs and other goodies on The Whole30

I grew up on a small farm in Northern California. I use the term farm loosely but we did have chickens, a garden and my beautiful  Quarter horses.

We grew( at various times and with various success) potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, melons etc……just enough to feed our large family of 8 kids and two adults.

My favorite breakfast was the delicious free range eggs our chickens provided us with. The yolks of a sunny side up egg looked like bright sunshine on the plate. I loved them scrambled with Vella dry jack cheese and chives from the garden.. makes me hungry to think about it. I still make scrambled eggs that way, just without the  Vella dry jack for now.

If you have to buy eggs at the farmers market or the store it can be very confusing..  Natural eggs?? aren’t they all natural? Organic Eggs? Again the confusion. Is the egg organic or the feed the chicken eats ?

free range?another one that’s really misleading… gets me thinking that the chickens are all running around and getting their pecking order on..but in reality they are probably moved from spot to spot in a portable pen on a small patch of ground.

Here is the deal.. buy pasture raised eggs if you can. That means that the chickens get to roam around freely in a pasture and eat grubs and stuff , as well as any organic feed they might be supplemented with.

But if you can, buy them from a farm that you have checked out yourself.. I get mine from a neighbor friend  who has chickens…. Illegally of course, but without the Rooster strutting around and looking for attention from the hens , it is a pretty quiet enterprise.

I also buy my pasture raised eggs at Whole Foods if I need to.  (like when the snooty neighbor who never eats, let alone an “OMG egg with butter!”, complained about my friends egg business and tried to shut it down)

Pictured is a great simple recipe for breakfast on the Whole30 or just because you want to start your day healthy and satisfied.

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 In order to make this the correct way you need to have Ghee or Clarified butter prepped. Here is the easy way to do that,

The night before... melt 4 sticks( 1 pound) of grass fed organic butter ( I love Strauss dairy) in a medium sauce pan on medium/high heat, let the butter melt completely and turn to simmer. Simmer for 8-10 minutes until it starts to crackle. This is the water evaporating out of the butter. The cream foam will rise to the surface( you may skim off if you like) and you will see the gold liquid start to separate on the bottom of the pan. It is okay to have some brown bits but do not let the butter burn.

note to self…..Do Not get sidetracked by your Instagram while melting the butter!

Turn off the heat and pour the liquid butter into a  small rectangular glass container with a lid. Let it chill overnight in the frig and then in the morning before you cook your breakfast, poke a large hole in the butter and pour off the milky liquid. These are the milk solids that cause burning when you use a pat of unclarified butter in a hot pan!

This clarified butter or simple ghee (There is a slight difference that you can research ) is now ready for the next weeks worth of cooking. I also refrigerate the clarified butter liquid it in a small ice cube tray so that I have  the proper portions already to go.  One cube is perfect for my big saute pan and is about a thumb size of good fat!

Back to the breakfast recipe:

Salsa  poached eggs with spinach and leeks

Ingredients for two servings:

2 portions of clarified butter

4  illegally raised pasture raised eggs

4 cups organic spinach

2 organic leeks, white part only, rinsed clean of sand

1 cup hot ,organic salsa of your choice, If store bought make sure it has no sugar!

salt and pepper to taste

prep the leeks .. cut them in half lengthwise and slice then thinly.

Using a large saute pan, turn on medium heat and pre heat the pan,

Add the butter and let it melt completely.

Add the leeks….. saute them until the start to get crispy edges.

Add the salsa and stir well.

Add the spinach and cook down. It will rapidly reduce in size and water will be created from the spinach leaves.

Crack your eggs over the  top of the spinach mix , sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Cover with a glass lid to poach the eggs with the steam.Poach the mix for approx. 5 minutes, Until  you see the egg white start to cook and become white.

When the white start to harden flip the mixture over gently.

Cook for three more minutes.

Devour and Have a delicious day!

Zucchini-Pineapple Bread with Cinnamon Chips

Have you ever had a flash of a childhood recipe that you loved? I had one yesterday as I was picking my garden zucchini.. We had a neighbor who had a gorgeous vegetable garden and loads of fruit trees. They lived on a small ranch next to our house and I used to stable my horses there when our pasture grass was being replanted. Mrs. Wright was the older lady who lived there with her husband. She made the best zucchini pineapple bread I have ever tasted.  It was studded with walnuts and fresh pineapple, which was exotic to me back then.The smell of her baking used to drift out to the barn and I would make up an excuse to go to her  kitchen door because I knew she would insist I eat something she was baking. I really think she used to bake for me, my sister and brothers because all of her kids were gone and she liked having us in her kitchen! One afternoon I spent the whole day baking with her and it is one of those memories that had stayed with me in my cooking career. She taught me the proper way to scoop and level flour and all sorts of baking techniques I still use today. In memory of this very sweet lady I baked this wonderful bread yesterday.  The recipe is adapted from what I remember she did.I hope you like it as much as we do… I use almond flour, coconut oil, cinnamon chips and raw sugar so if you do not have these wait until the next time you go to the market and pick them up so you will be ready.

This recipe makes 2 loaves of bread or 24 muffins.

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2 cups fresh zucchini, coarsely grated.

(put into a colander to drain as you prepare the rest of the bread batter.)

1 c. fresh pineapple, cut into 1/2 cubes

1 c. raw sugar

3 eggs, large

1 c. Coconut oil, liquefied

1 tsp. real vanilla extract

2 c. unbleached, organic white flour

1 c. almond flour( BOB’s Red Mill)

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

1 tsp. cardamon

1 bag cinnamon chips

2 c. walnut pieces

In a large bowl whisk the eggs and the coconut oil together. add the sugar and mix well. add the vanilla extract, grated zucchini and pineapple. Stir to coat the zucchini and pineapple.

In a separate bowl , using a large fork,blend the white flour and the almond flour to combine. add the baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt.

Combine the dry ingredients into the wet and mix until everything is moist and the ingredients are well incorporated.

Stir in the cinnamon chips and the walnuts.

well grease or line the pans with parchment paper. This bread is sticky and will need to set until it cools. If you try to cut it hot it will fall apart. You will be tempted but wait!!

Bake at 350 degrees for 60-70 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean when you insert it into the middle of the bread.

If you are making the muffins the baking time will be about 30 minutes.

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Pizza class tomorrow night

Doing some prep work for my class tomorrow night. Try this next time you want an authentic Napoli pizza!

Sauté 6 pieces bacon that gave been coarsley chopped. When crispy turn off the heat and add 4 cloves of garlic that have been mashed with 4 rinsed anchovy fillet. Stir well into the hot bacon and grease mixture. The smell is heavenly!!!
Top your par cooked pizza dough with this mixture, fresh basil and tomatoes. Add some fresh mozzarella and cook. Delish!

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Grandson in the Garden

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My grandson Jack loves the garden. 19 Months old and he picks herbs and veggies with me. Green juice is something he gulps down with a smile♥

It is never too early to nurture their love for all things yummy that come out of the garden!

Jack and I picked Japanese eggplant, zucchini, tarragon, basil, lemon basil, chives, Italian parsley and fennel flowers that were dripping with pollen. We had to interrupt the very busy bees that were harvesting all of the pollen. I wish I could find their honey hive….

 

Anyway the following recipe is for the fresh multi -herb pesto we made to marinate and grill the veggies with.

1/2 cup fresh basil leaves

1/2 cup  fresh lemon basil leaves

1/2 cup fresh tarragon leaves

2 Tsp. fresh Thyme leaves

1/2 c. Italian parsley

1/4 cup chopped chives

4 fennel flowers( if you have them)

4 cloves garlic, peeled

1 c. EVOO

1/2 tsp. coarse salt

1/2 c. toasted pine nuts

fresh seasonal vegetables

In the bowl of your food processor place the loosely packed herbs, garlic cloves and salt. Process with the pulse speed for 30 seconds, on and off. Add the toasted pine nuts and pulse for an additional 30 seconds, on and off to mix them together. The mixture should be pretty smooth by this time. Add the EVVO and mix for 45 seconds until blended together and no big pieces remain in the bowl. Add more olive oil to taste if you like a smoother consistency.

 

Cut your fresh eggplant and zucchini lengthwise and brush with the pesto mixture. Reserve the extra pesto.

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let this marinate for up to two hours. Place on the hot grill skin side down for 3 minutes, flip and char the other side. Total cooking time is about 7 minutes but watch the vegetables carefully. If you have a veggie basket for your grill then use that. It makes it really easy.

I like to toss up whole wheat pasta with the leftover pesto and grate some Asiago over it, maybe add some chopped garden fresh tomatoes. Delish!

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Homemade Sriracha Sauce

I stumbled upon a great blog that has great photos and  adventurous recipes. http://www.reclaimingprovincial.com.

Check out this blog and her recipe too!

I was goggling the type of hot peppers to use for sriracha sauce and her pictures were amazing so I decided to use her recipe with a few modifications.

The resulting sauce is still fermenting but in about three days I will let you know how it turns out. Right now it has the slightly smokey, earthy taste I love so much in the original sriracha but I still need to add the vinegar and cook it down. We will see… My garden jalapenos are still green so I swooped into Whole foods and bought up most of their red jalapenos!

Recipe as follows:

1 # red jalapeno peppers

4 oz. dried Thai chili peppers

8  large cloves garlic, peeled

1 Tbsp.coarse sea salt

4 Tbsp. raw cane sugar

 

Using the blade attachment on your food processor , snip off all of the stems on the peppers  but leave the  little green hats on…add them to your processor bowl with the garlic, salt and sugar. Process until finely ground , alternating between the pulse & puree settings.

Pour into a 32 ounce Mason Jar and loosely screw on the lid. Store in a dark dry spot

( mine is in my pantry) and check on it everyday. The fermentation typically starts after two days. Once you see bubbles starting to form on the bottom of the jar then it is magic time!

Stir the contents every day. it will rise in volume with the bubbles but decrease once you stir it. Once there is no increase in volume after you stir ( about 4 days) remove it from the jar and put the mixture into a medium sauce pan.

add: 1/4 cup Bragg’s apple cider vinegar and bring to a boil. Let it boil for about 5-10 minutes but be careful not to scorch the mixture. Turn it down to medium if you start to notice a burnt smell..

Your sauce should thicken nicely. Let it cool then store in in a glass jar with a tight fitting lid for up to 6 months.. Delish!

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Bumbling Along!

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Lord. teach me to pant the seeds that help meet the needs of others and to remember that it is You who blesses the work of my hands. Amen.

Just a small prayer to start the day, the next step was to water my garden and this very busy bee kept me company. I love the network of bugs and animals in the garden, Watching ladybugs eat the pests off of my tomatoes and seeing a bee like this one loaded down with pollen on his legs.. just an amazing ecosystem we have going here.. You start out planting to feed yourself and in the process so many others are in the cycle with you. Just like life , if you are living it right!

Today’s recipe is  my delicious hummus.. I cooked for an event on Thursday night and we filled hollowed out giant eggplant with the hummus.. it was so good. Everyone wanted the recipe so here you go.

The day before you want to serve the hummus…

2 cups dried organic garbanzo beans ( Whole Foods)

4 Cups water

cover the beans with the water and let them sit overnight.

The following day cover the drained, soaked beans with enough water to cover the beans plus three extra inches. Put in 1 TBSP kosher salt and bring to a boil. cover and simmer for approx. 4 hours or until they are soft..

Once they have cooled slip off the skins from the beans, this will make for very silky hummus!

with the blade attachment for your food processor..

Place the beans in the bowl and process with the pulse button until slightly broken up.

Add:

6 cloves peeled garlic

1/2 cup Tahini ( sesame paste)

Juice of two large lemons, freshly squeezed.

1 TBSP. Sirachia ( Rooster Sauce)

Process until smooth , about two  minutes.

with the motor running drizzle in one cup of EVOO ( extra virgin olive oli) through the feed tube.

add 1/2 cup fresh chopped parsley and 1 TBSP. salt. Process until very smooth. Adjust your seasonings to your taste buds.

hollow out an eggplant or artichoke, maybe a red bell pepper and use it as the hummus container.

hummus filled eggplant

Perfect Pizza Dough

I wish I could post the pictures of the dough process but I lost every photo on my iPhone due to a very weird freeze that happened on it! I am not happy that I failed to back up all of my photos but soon I will have many more.

Here is the perfect basic Pizza Dough, the recipes follows many trials and errors but now this is it!

I use Bob’s Red Mill Organic Flours, cornmeal,and grains for everything so try to find it in your market or health food store. Whole foods carries all of his products. I especially love the unsweetened flaked coconut, the best ever!

The first step takes 2 1/2 hours, two hours are the dough rising time.

Stir Together in the bowl of your stand mixer:

2 tsp. dry yeast

1/2 cup lukewarm water

add and mix well:

1/4 cup unbleached white flour

1/4 cup whole wheat flour

stir well to mix together and allow it to sit for 25-35 minutes until it is very bubbly, This activates the yeast for a light and chewy crust.

In a separate bowl mix :

3 1/2 c. unbleached white flour

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. mixed dry herbs ( optional)

Once the yeast mixture is ready stir the flour mix into the yeast. Use the dough hook attachment to mix.

add:

3/4 cup cold water and 1/4 c. olive oil (EVOO)

Mix for 8 minutes with the dough hook or until the dough is still soft but pulls away from the side of the bowl.If the dough looks to wet add  a bit more flour but only enough to form a soft , slightly sticky dough.

en the dough is ready put it into a large glass bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. The plastic wrap should touch the dough to keep the top from getting hard. cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel and let it rise for two hours in a warm place.

the dough will triple in size in the bowl. 

You are now ready to make your pizza crust. Pre heat the oven to 450 degrees. if you have a pizza stone shape the dough to fit the stone pressing the dough from the center out to stretch it gently across the round stone. If you are using a pan the same process applies.

I sprinkle fennel seed on the edges of my crust before I bake it.

Once it fits the pan let it rise for 15 minutes and the par-bake it for 12 minutes, remove it from the oven and top it with your favorite toppings:

Re-bake for 15-20 minutes until your cheese it melted and the bottom of the crusty is browned.

My family loves goat cheese, arugula, sun dried tomatoes, shaved fennel, mushroom etc.

pour a cold beer and enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

this recipe will make you feel better today!

Once again the hideous things that demented people do to innocent people threaten to unhinge our souls. The best remedy for me is to cook for those I love….. so today I am making Scott’s favorite dinner. A few years ago he bet me that I could not replicate the stock from Jack’s Shrimp in Newport Beach. It is a secret family recipe that many have tried to duplicate. But have no fear because not only did I make it, I made it better! Well at least my family thinks so. Here is the perfect recipe to fill your home with comforting smells. The hearty broth is best with grilled sourdough bread to mop it up . This dinner is meant to share with people who don’t mind getting their hands dirty while eating and I would uncork a good bottle of Shiraz to drink with it.

Ingredients: Feeds four with  big servings.

2 pounds jumbo RAW shrimp in the shell

1/2 cup grapeseed oil

1 stick unsalted butter

1 bottle white wine , such as a dry Riesling

6 cloves of garlic, crushed

1 lemon, sliced into four pieces

3 leeks

4 celery stalks, chopped into 1/4 inch dice

1 onion, chopped into 1/4 inch dice

1-16 ounce can Muir Glen Organic crushed tomatoes

2 cups Pacific Organic Vegetable broth

2 stems of fresh Rosemary, pull the fresh leaves off of the stem. about ! Tablespoon

pinch saffron threads

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp ground black pepper

½ tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste)

2 tsp. sweet paprika

2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

Peel the  shrimp and remove the dark vein from the spine. set the shells aside and the shrimp aside( in separate bowls). Refrigerate the peeled shrimp.

Heat the oil and butter in a large heavy skillet until the butter has melted. Add the leeks, celery, onion and garlic and sauté on medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onions are softened. add the shrimp shells and stir to coat with the stock vegetables.

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Stir in the thyme, rosemary, black pepper, cayenne pepper, paprika and sauté for another minute or two.Pour in the Worcestershire sauce,  two cups of the wine, stock,  tomatoes and lemon slices. Simmer for two hours very low.

Strain the broth through a Chinois if you have one or a large strainer  to remove the shells and vegetables.  Put the broth back into a smaller stockpot and add the saffron threads. Adjust the seasoning to please your taste buds.

I like to add a big pinch of red pepper flakes to spice it up even more.

Twenty minutes before you are ready to eat make a pot of white jasmine rice.

ten minutes before you eat add the raw shrimp to the broth and let them cook through,until they are pink.

In a large bowl serve  the shrimp broth over rice,  Have soft butter and crusty sourdough bread on the side for dipping.

What’s for dinner? Beets Me!

I love beets, especially raw beets that have been pickled or marinated. This last weekend I made a beet and celery root salad with avocados that was a stunner on the plate and delicious to the palate. Most people think you have to roast or boil beets to enjoy them but it just aint so.

Beets come in many colors so if you can find different colors buy them. The Chioggia beet  is a stunning magenta and white when you cut into it. Buy them if you find them!

The beets get their zing from this Tangerine & Pomegranate Vinegar Marinade.

In a Large 32 ounce mason jar with a lid combine:

1/2 cup Rice Vinegar

1 cup light EVOO

1/4 c. grated tangerine zest

2 cloves minced garlic

2 minced shallots

1/2 c. crushed pomegranate seeds

course salt and pepper to taste

Pu this all together in the jar and with the lid on give it a good shake and let sit while you prepare the beets.

if you have kitchen gloves wear them while you peel the beets to prevent stained fingers. If you don’t have gloves wash them in warm water and scrub your hands with coarse salt at the same time.

Cut the tops and tails off of the beets close to the root. Using a vegetable peeler, peel the outer tough skin off of the beets. If you have a mandolin slice the beets very thin or carefully cut the beets into thin rounds. Add these to the marinade in the jar and shake to coat them. Place in the refrigerator for 24 hours, shaking it occasionally to re- coat the beets and distribute the marinade evenly over them.

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Eat them with sliced avocados and Arugula for a refreshing & gorgeous salad. Toss in some tangerine segments if you have them.