All posts filed under: gourmet cooking

Food: Tuscan Beef and Lentil Soup

I miss my kitchen while in England or perhaps just the cooking. My grandmother used to say while I watched her extensive meal preps over the summers I spent with her in Montreal, the best meals are the ones you make in your own kitchen. So with that in mind, I am gathering up recipes, and preparing my grocery list for a dozen recipe I want try out this week. First up, Tuscan Beef and Lentil soup. SOUP 1-2 Tbsp neutral oil (such as avocado oil) 1/2 large white or yellow onion, diced 1/2 tsp each sea salt and black pepper, DIVIDED plus more to taste 6 cloves garlic, minced 1/4 tsp red pepper flake (omit for less heat) 1 lb. ground beef or bison (grass-fed, organic, pasture-raised whenever possible // if vegan, omit and double amount of beans listed below) 3 Tbsp tomato paste (plus more to taste) 1 15-oz can diced tomatoes (with salt, add with juices) 1 quart chicken broth (or sub beef // sub vegetable broth if vegan // 1 quart = 4 cups) 1 Tbsp dried basil (or sub fresh to taste) 1 Tbsp dried oregano (or sub fresh to taste) 1 15-oz can white beans or lentils*, slightly drained (double amount if …

Holiday Series: Gathering Up The Week Long Celebration Menu

I’m hosting many guests over the holiday week, and finding just the right recipe is probably the funnest task I embark on, because you see, I love a good dinner party, and a conversations, and even followed by a board game. So, here are some of the dishes I intend to make this week: What are your favorite recipes? Here’s a fun article about how to feed your hungriest house guests 

Food: Dinner Tonight – Mexican Shredded Chicken

I have been on a Mexican food crave this week, which is about right – before the holidays I crave Mexican or Asian cuisine. So Mexican shredded chicken it is for that soft taco meal we’ll be having, except for my mum, who prefers a pita bread to any other variation. I can see her now, stuffing fork full of the chicken inside the pita bread, and spreading yogurt for flavor instead of the guacamole or sour cream the rest of the family insists upon: CHICKEN 1/2 tsp sea salt, divided 1 tsp ground cumin, divided 1 tsp smoked paprika, divided 1 tsp chili powder, divided (NOT cayenne or just ground chilies — see notes*) 1 Tbsp avocado oil (or other neutral oil, or sub water) 2 (~8 ounce) chicken breasts*, boneless skinless (and organic, pasture-raised when possible) 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (omit or reduce for less heat) 1/4 cup vegetable or chicken broth 2 Tbsp lime juice {more} On another note – love this suggestion on how to stock your pantry for beginners to healthy cooking 

Holiday Series: Thanksgiving Preliminary Prep

I start out with one menu – and then shift it throughout the week leading to Thanksgiving, so with that mindset, here’s what I am considering for the holiday, perhaps even leading to smaller dinner parties up to New Year’s eve. {featured source and inspiration for this blog post}

Food: Pumpkin Black Bean Soup

Another easy recipe for the family – and to also satisfy my cravings for chili – this variation is for dinner tonight: CHICKEN optional One 8-ounce chicken breast (boneless, skinless, organic, and pasture-raised when possible)  SOUP 2 tsp avocado oil (or sub water) 1 ½ cups diced white or yellow onion (or sub shallot or red onion) 3 cloves garlic (minced) 1 tsp fresh minced ginger 1 medium jalapeño, minced (seeds and stem removed) 1 small sweet potato, diced (skin on) 1 15-ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes with green chilies 1-2 cups vegetable or chicken broth 1 ½-2 tsp ground cumin 1 tsp chili powder (or add more to taste) 1/4 tsp ground coriander (optional) 1 14-oz can light coconut milk (or sub full fat for a creamier soup) 1 cup canned pumpkin pureé (or add more for more pronounced pumpkin flavor) 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained {more} {photo and recipe credit} On another note – what’s your plans for the weekend? And what has made you tear up recently? 

Let’s Start With Recipes

For the love of baking season, I could not help but share some of my favorite recipes – you know – to try out before taking a batch to an upcoming party or get-together. Oh and by the way, I booked myself a tiny trip to this place and although I normally work while on vacation, the views from my hotel room help make up for the fact that I do.  I’ll share more shortly {featured image source for inspiration}

Food: Thai Chicken and Noodles

I love Asian fusion or simply Asian inspired food and this recipe for Thai Chicken and Noodles is something worth sharing in today’s ONLY Food series: INGREDIENTS 8 ounces wide rice noodles 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce or liquid aminos 3 tablespoons oyster sauce 1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce 2 teaspoons honey or maple 2 tablespoons sesame oil or extra virgin olive oil 1/2 pound boneless chicken breast, cut into strips (optional) 2 shallots, thinly sliced 3 cloves garlic, minced or grated 1-2 red Fresno peppers or jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped 4 green onions, chopped 1 medium zucchini, cut into ribbons or chopped 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced 2 carrots, cut into ribbons or chopped 1 cup fresh Thai basil or regular basil, roughly chopped {more} What’s your favorite Asian Dish?

Food: Dinner Tonight – Salad with Chickpea, Corn, Tomato, Avocado

Ingredients that go way back in my culture, are now coming to light – in all sorts of ways. But the only difference in this case, is that we used to eat roasted lightly salted chickpeas as a snack (instead of candy) and never have considered it in salad. 🙂 So, since I am on the verge of converting to plant-based ‘not-diet’ – I figured I’d give this salad a try – with the feta cheese. Because…I have trouble letting-go of cheese. INGREDIENTS 1/2 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, and or parsley, roughly chopped 1 tablespoon fresh chopped chives 1 can (14 ounce) chickpeas, drained 4 ears grilled or steamed corn, kernels removed 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved 2 Persian cucumbers, diced 1 cup cubed feta cheese 1 avocado, diced SHALLOT VINAIGRETTE 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil 1 shallot, finely chopped 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice + the zest of 1 lemon 2 teaspoons honey 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar 1 pinch crushed red peppers flakes kosher salt and black pepper {more} On another note, what films have you seen lately and recommend? yes, I did go..and..see…Hobbs and Shaw

Food: Panna Cotta and a Story

When I was a child living in the middle east, my cousin, who was much older, 20plus years older, left our homeland to live in Paris so he could be a student of Le Cordon Bleu. Now, just in case you are not familiar with the culinary school, it is one of the best, was the best pack a century ago. I cried the day he left, not sure why, but I was only six and I hated seeing anyone in our extended family leave. Years later, we crossed paths in the states, and he invited our family for dinner. On the menu was  Panna Cotta adorned with fresh cherries he’d soaked in Grand Marnier, or a variation almost Panna Cotta, he’d learned to prepare at the very culinary school. Being a grown up and appreciating much of the finer things in cuisine, I ate one and then asked for a second serving and then stood in the kitchen afterwards discussing the ingredients he used to create the best dessert I have ever had. So …

Food: For the 4th of July Picnic Or Just Because

San Francisco doesn’t have the best weather for July 4th – Independence Day, where the highlight of the holiday is the fireworks celebrating our independence. So you can imagine most city folk travel hours to get away from the foggy cost and set up camp or a picnic somewhere to watch the fireworks.  Food is a big part of July 4th – come to think of it – food is a big part of anything we do in the states 🙂 But that doesn’t mean you cannot organize a picnic between now and then – and most anywhere in the world. Grab your loved ones or dear friends, a blanket, your pets and head out to a sprawling greenery or lakeside view location and just enjoy a day of eating and solid interaction. For recipes go here {For more recipes go here} {featured image source} where are you spending July 4th? And what is your favorite dish?