All posts filed under: Gourmet Cooking & Recipes

Food: Dinner Tonight – Quinoa Salad

I cooked quinoa last night – but it was too warm to make a salad out of it just yet. So I switched gears and went with sliders for dinner with a side of home-made coleslaw. But tonight, we are having quinoa salad with a side dish – open-faced grilled cheese baguette. Since this is my first attempt at quinoa salad, I found a recipe here to try. Except I realize, I should not have boiled the spinach leaves. May have to go to the grocers and pick up a fresh bag of spinach leaves. Ingredients For the Dressing: 1/4 cup olive oil 1 clove minced garlic 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1 large lemon 1 tablespoon golden balsamic vinegar or champagne vinegar 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup or honey Kosher salt and black pepper to taste For the Salad: 2 cups cold cooked quinoa 2 cups fresh spinach leaves chopped 1 cup chopped cucumber 1 cup halved grape or cherry tomatoes 1 large avocado pitted, peeled, and chopped 2 green onions sliced Kosher salt and black pepper to taste  {more} {recipe and image source}

Food: Holiday Series – What To Bring for Potluck

I was over the moon when I found this recipe online. A reminder of my childhood days, during the holidays when my mother and aunts got together to bake and make holiday desserts for a family gathering. I always helped in the kitchen, but only because I wanted to taste all the goodies being whipped together across the kitchen counters all the way to the dinning table – where the women gathered to share secrets to their version of the same old recipe, and laugh out loud at all the fun being poked about this and that. I loved every minute of it. So, since potluck is the sharing of the responsibilities of the hostess – here’s a great recipe for a unique dessert – chocolate salame – that’s been tried and tested by our extended families, eons ago, somewhere in a Mediterranean kitchen: Ingredients 100 g di biscuits like digestives or similar 100 g of butter at room temperature 150 g of sugar 100 g of good quality unsweetened cocoa powder 2 eggs Icing sugar Butcher’s twine Instructions Break the biscuits coarsely with your hands: do …

Food: Marble Pound Cake

When I was a child, there was a tradition established where relatives – mostly the women – visit one another on a particular date each month. The date was determined based on a symbolic event for that certain family – such as a birthday or a wedding date.  The hostess would bake a cake or two or make brioche and other wonderful baked goods, fresh lemonade in the summer and cinnamon spiced tea in the winter and sometimes even ice cream or jello would be added – for the kids that behaved during the visit. I don’t recall behaving until the cake and ice cream was served and then I had to glance over to my mother to make sure I was entitled to getting my share. So in light of traditions, and hosting a tea party or Sunday brunch or even a simple get-together just because, I share with you this wonderful old-world, easy marble cake recipe, just like the ones my mother and aunts made – right  here: Ingredients 3 eggs about 210 g 210 g of cane …

Food: Dinner Tonight – Eggplants and Italian Sausage

I found this recipe, and decided since I am aiming to Keto my way through life – to change one ingredient to fit my dietary needs.  Instead of breadcrumbs I am going to add Italian spicy sausage from Trader Joe  to personalize the already perfect recipe. Simple as that. Ingredients 1 eggplant or 4 thin and long ones 3 tablespoons of breadcrumbs 2 tablespoons of grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Pecorino Romano 1 tablespoon of finely chopped parsley 1 tablespoon of finely chopped capers either brined or in salt 1 clove of garlic 4 tablespoons of water 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil plus more for drizzling A few turns of black pepper Salt {more from the original recipe}

Food: Dinner Tonight – Korean Grilled Steak

For fourth of July or anytime, this recipe is an amazing variation to a grilled steak dinner. INGREDIENTS 1 cup low sodium soy sauce or tamari 2 tablespoons honey 1-2 tablespoons Gochujang (Korean chili paste) 1 inch fresh ginger, grated 4 cloves garlic, grated 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil 2 pounds skirt or flank steak CHIMICHURRI 1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped 4 green onions, chopped 1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped 2 tablespoons rice vinegar 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil juice of 1 lime kosher salt 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds {more}   {photo source}

Food: Summer After Dinner Treat

I get it – some parts of the bay area as well as cities around the world – the weather is warming up. Not so much in San Francisco – as you may or not know – we experience winter-like weather during the summer months here and actually the locals wear coats, and ankle boots and sometimes even woolly scarves. Not exaggerating. But if you happen to be in a much warmer climate and crave a dessert now and again – the healthier version that is – consider this refreshing recipe: INGREDIENTS: 12 oz mixed frozen organic berries 1 Tbsp lucuma 1 Tbsp cold-pressed sunflower lecithin powder (hexane-free) 2 Tbsp hemp seeds 1 Tbsp goji berries 4 dropperfuls Dragon Herbs goji & schizandra drops ½ tsp pearl powder 1 tsp tremella powder 1 Tbsp grass-fed ghee 1 Tbsp C-8 caprylic acid MCT oil 1 dropperful liquid stevia DIRECTIONS: Blend all ingredients on high while strongly pounding with the VitaMix plunger until smooth. Enjoy! {more}

Food: Dinner Tonight – Roasted Cauliflower and Halloumi Cheese Tacos

Last March I visited a friend in England and she introduced me to Halloumi cheese dish served in a Mediterranean restaurant in London. Since then I have included this amazing cheese in salads, and simply served fried with a bit of tomato sauce for dipping – kind of like mozzarella sticks in a restaurant without the batter.  You see the cheese has the best elasticity and even melted holds together very well – so you can actually use it in variety of appetizers and as a side dish. So, guess what happened to me when I saw this recipe for roasted Cauliflower and Halloumi cheese tacos!!!!!!!!!  With a beer of your choice to wash it down of course. My mouth is watering as I settle into my kitchen to duplicate the recipe: INGREDIENTS 1 large, or 2 small, heads cauliflower, cut into florets 2 tablespoons sesame or olive oil 2 teaspoons smoked paprika 1 teaspoon chili powder 1 teaspoon cumin 1 teaspoon kosher salt and pepper 1 (14 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed 8 ounces halloumi cheese, sliced 1 cucumber or zucchini, shredded SPICY AVOCADO BASIL GUACAMOLE 1 avocado, halved …

Food: Dinner Tonight – Chicken, Chickpeas and Sweet Potato

A simple take on the old recipe with chicken. A funny story I had been turned-off of chicken recently, mostly craving beef instead for my protein intake. But I am back to serving meals with chicken in mind – and here’s a great one for dinner tonight: INGREDIENTS 1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken breasts or thighs 1/4 cup olive oil plus, more for drizzling 2 lemons, juice and zest from 1 + 1 sliced 2 tablespoons Harissa seasoning 1 tablespoon honey kosher salt and black pepper 2 medium sweet potatoes, cut into 1 inch chunks 1 sweet onion, sliced 1 can (14 ounces) chickpeas, drained 1/2 cup crumbled feta 1/3 cup green olives, smashed plain greek yogurt and fresh mint or cilantro, for serving {more}

Romantic Dinner Prepared By You

Going out to dinner on Valentine’s Day is over-rated and simply too expensive and less personal. I mean the idea of sharing a romantic dinner with 50-75 other couples, all dressed up in like colors, in the past had me giggling the second my loved-one and I were ushered to our table. I think the most romantic is making dinner for him or for her. Send the kids off to the grandparents and take the afternoon off to make the perfect dinner for the special person in your life. And if cooking is unobtainable, then order in – with a bottle of his or her favorite wine. In case you choose to make dinner, there is a list of 25 romantic recipes to help with the process. Here’s what I’m going for. Please cross your fingers. I don’t like to mix alcohol – but the plan is – start with a good bottle of wine – in this case, I’ve chosen a bottle of Chateau St. Jean 2013 and since this variation is my first …