July 31, 2014

spinach, strawberry & avocado salad

Make a very simple salad special by adding strawberries and pecans.
Strawberries in Colombia are irresistibly sweet. The markets are full with them year round so expect to see a lot of them in this space.

For this salad I used:
6 large strawberries quartered
10 ounces spinach leaves
1 Cup roasted pecans
1 medium avocado, peeled, pitted, cubed.

Make ahead and mix & toss with enough dressing to coat just before serving.

For the dressing: 
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. raw agave nectar
1 Tbsp. poppy seeds
Juice of 1 medium lime
Salt & Pepper

Whisk all ingredients in small bowl to blend. Season with salt & pepper.

July 30, 2014

roasted butternut squash and quinoa salad

Last night I made a not so traditional dish but one that still screams comfort food.
We arrived in Bogota last Sunday and even though it has not been raining, it is still cold and it feels like eating this kind of food.
My kids loved this dish! 

For this salad I used: 2 Cups of cooked quinoa, 3 Cups cubed roasted butternut squash, 1/4 Cup pine nuts, 1/3 Cup kalamata olives, 1/2 Cup caramelized onions, and a bunch of baby spinach.
Dressing: 2 Tbsp. olive oil, juice of 1 lemon, 1 Tbsp. honey.
Mix all the ingredients while the quinoa, butternut squash, and caramelized onions are still warm. Add the dressing and serve.

July 29, 2014

some things I liked at the flea market in Washington, DC

I usually get overwhelmed at flea markets and leave empty handed, but definitely it is
one of my favorite things to do on weekends. There are many flea markets in the Washington, DC area.
I like the Eastern Market, the Georgetown Flea Market, and the Arlington Flea Market. Check them out if you're in town!

July 28, 2014

steamed mussels in coconut milk

This dish is all about the main ingredient, mussels.
I steamed them in coconut milk with Thai basil, chopped tomato, garlic, and bacon.
It makes a great first course served with a baguette (or two!) and a glass of white wine.

Mussels are tasty and fun to eat year round.

July 21, 2014

nectarine & peach crisp

nothing like a good crisp!
This time I had some nectarines and peaches in the fridge.
I just sliced them and covered them with an oatmeal crumb
to make a delicious dessert. One the screams comfort food!

Truly delicious when eaten warm out of the oven and with vanilla ice cream.

July 19, 2014

slow roasted pear tomatoes

Seriously good with pasta!
Cut the pear tomatoes in half, sprinkle them with kosher salt, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, add your favorite fresh herbs (I used rosemary), and bake for 1-2 hours in a 300 degree oven.

June 28, 2014

chicken flautas

Chicken flautas are a great lunch or dinner to whip up if you don’t have a lot of time. They are perfect for kids! I love them with fresh guacamole and pico de gallo.

June 27, 2014

wild berries

Saw this wild berries on my morning walk.
They're not ready to eat yet, but so beautiful!

Would make lovely boutonnieres.

June 26, 2014

red quinoa

I love quinoa and simple recipes.

This salad is easy to make and delicious. Just mix cooked red quinoa, chickpeas, chopped sun dried tomatoes & parsley. Dress it up with olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt & pepper. I did not measure any of the ingredients, so don't worry! just mix, add, and taste until you are satisfied with the result.

June 19, 2014

spaghetti alla checca

2 pounds fresh cherry tomatoes
8 ounces fresh whole milk mozzarella cut in 1/4" pieces
1 pound spaghetti
1/2 Cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 Cup fresh chopped basil leaves
3 garlic cloves minced
Freshly ground black pepper
1.  Fill a pot for the pasta with about 6 quarts of water, place over high heat, and bring to a boil.
2.  Cut the tomatoes in half. Put the tomatoes in the serving bowl you’ll be serving the pasta in.
3.  Add about 2 tablespoons salt to the boiling pasta water, put in the spaghetti, and stir until all the strands are submerged.  Cook until al dente.
4.  While the pasta is cooking, add the olive oil, garlic, mozzarella, and basil to the tomatoes. Season with salt & pepper.
5.  When the pasta is done, drain well, and toss it with the ingredients in the serving bowl. Cover the bowl and let stand for about a minute to allow the cheese to melt a bit.  Uncover the bowl, toss one last time, and serve.