August

Does it seem like time is flying by? Somehow it’s the middle of August and back to school shopping has commenced. I really hope we make it and there isn’t a state wide “oh shit” and we all end up in lockdown again…sigh.

Still plenty of pool days.

A few weeks back we had a blast at Boots in the Park. It was an all day country concert at Waterfront park with five artists/bands. Our seats were amazing, the view was amazing and the reason we went, Old Dominion, were AHmazing! So much fun.

The fountains were on until the sun went down, it provided a cool down when needed.

Ryan Griffin
Dustin Lynch
Scotty McCreery

I made a couple of my favorite recipes to make for guests. One being Chrissy Teigen’s meatloaf from her cookbook Cravings. I am not a meatloaf fan, I mean….meat in a loaf, no thanks. I remember my mom making it when I was young and she put mashed potatoes on top, well I think that’s a memory. Anyhow, I had to douse mine in BBQ sauce to eat it. But this recipe has half ground beef and half spicy Italian sausage along with mushroom and onions. It’s really good, as good as meatloaf can get.

I also made this gazpacho, which is my most favorite of all time recipe for the cold Spanish soup. However, I did tweak a couple of the things from the original recipe to make it my own. It will not disappoint, I promise.

Here is what you need to do.

Grab 3 garlic cloves, unpeeled and wrap them in foil

3 large tomatoes (1 1/2 pounds)

1 medium cucumber ( I use

1 green anaheim pepper

1 red bell pepper

1 medium sweet onion, unpeeled

Throw all of the above ingredients and grill or roast until the skin in charred and they begin to soften. F&W says “about 8 minutes for the tomatoes, cucumber and bell peppers, 10 minutes for the garlic and 15 minutes for the onion.” However I think it takes longer, so allow 30 minutes for this.

Once they are cool enough to handle without you swearing as you burn your fingers, peel and discard any seeds or stems from the veg and then run a knife through them. Then toss them all in your food processor or blender.

Then grab.

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

2 tablespoons sherry vinegar

1/4 cup chopped Italian Parsley and Basil, plus more for garnish

1 cup cold water

croutons

Salt and freshly ground pepper

While blending add the olive oil, then the vinegar (use sherry vinegar if you can). Taste for salt, i think it always needs more. Add the herbs and taste again. Pour into a big bowl, stir in the cold water and stick it in the fridge until cold and ready to serve.

Serve in individual bowls and drizzle with your best olive oil and garnish with herbs and croutons.

Then watch your guests happily slurp it up. It’s delicious

Please make this and tell me how much you LOVED It!

Watermelon Feta Salad

Watermelon feta…high, watermelon feta high. Did Harry Styles just get stuck in your head? You’re welcome.

This salad, you guys, is the epitome of a summer dish. Currently it is 79 and sunny in San Diego and this is all you need for lunch and or dinner, well a body of water and a glass of rosé wouldn’t hurt. It’s a perfect combination of flavors and the fact that you don’t have to turn on the oven, even better.

Just make it and then tell me how right I am.

Just look at all that deliciousness. You can assemble this salad however you like. Its good all chopped up in a bowl, but I was going more for presentation this time.

Recipe adapted from Food and Wine

INGREDIENTS

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil 

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon Tabasco

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

One small seedless watermelon, scooped into balls or cut into 1 inch chunks1 cup Feta, cut into 1 inch chunks or crumbled

1/2 red onion diced

1 cup coarsely chopped mint leaves

salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil, lemon juice, tabasco and half of your diced onion, season with salt and pepper to taste.

Add the watermelon and feta into a bowl or arranged on a plate, sprinkled with more red onion, drizzle in the dressing and sprinkle with chopped mint.

Even the girls jumped on the watermelon + feta bandwagon, it’s just too good.

The one with all the Pictures

Homeschooling is really sucking the life out of me and then the teachers went and added musical instruments, shame. Sorry, but those flutes are hidden for the rest of the week.

The girls have made friends with a group of the neighborhood kids and it has been AHmazing. They are eager to get off their zooms and go outside to play. They have been playing outside until the sun goes down and have been introduced to the game Ghosts in the Graveyard We have been at the tail end of our summer weather and we have definitely taken advantage of it.

Now that the weather is cooling down we thought it’s time to decorate for Halloween.

Fall cooking has been sparse, it’s been a lot of easy throw togethers, salads, Amy’s enchiladas and anything that could go on the grill.

I did make this recipe for roasted rack of lamb and with glass of cab and a dollop of mint jelly, it was delish.

I also made a divine chocolate mousse that hales from Waters Catering here in San Diego. So rich and soooo good.

Mummies were also on the menu one night.

The pumpkin patch was a slight let down, we tried a new one and although the girls were happy with it, there wont be a repeat visit. I think they would go back and just sit in the petting zoo the entire time.

But first, the hair.

They all decided they would rather paint theirs instead of carving. SO much easier.

To round out the Halloween fun, the girls had crazy hat day for their after school zoom.

There is no shortage of things to do, it’s just wanting to do them. I really hope 2021 brings more normalcy, ya know what I’m saying?

2020….How it started

How it’s going

Baltimore Style Crab Cakes

We had  a Global street food themed dinner party last weekend and the food was all so good. I made Andrew Zimmern’s crab cake recipe and it’s by far the best I have ever made and up there with some of the best I have ever had. He keeps the recipe simple so the crab shines.

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I bought some jalapeño tarter sauce to serve with it but honestly it didn’t need it, just a squeeze or two of lemon is the only teammate they need.

Ingredients

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 large egg, beaten
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco
1 pound jumbo lump crab meat, picked over
20 saltine crackers, finely crushed
1/4 cup canola oil

 

In a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the egg, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce until smooth.

In a medium bowl, lightly toss the crabmeat with the cracker crumbs. Gently fold in the mayonnaise mixture. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Scoop the crab mixture into eight 1/3-cup mounds; lightly pack into 8 patties, about 1 1/2 inches thick. In a large skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the crab cakes and cook over moderately high heat until deeply golden and heated through, about 3 minutes per side.

Transfer to a platter and serve with lemon.

*Recipe from Food and Wine

A Reason to Cook

I gazpacho you a recipe. I’ve been holding out of you. I found the best recipe for gazpacho, seriously. It’s from Food and Wine and it’s called Gazpacho on Fire. Basically you throw all the veg on a roasting pan and once it’s nice and charred you peel, seed and throw it in a food processor with a few other goodies.

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It really is one of the best I have had and perfect for these hot days.

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We’ve been beating the heat by heading to the bay early in the morning. The playground has sand and the sprinklers are on providing perfect sand castle material.

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We had a low key weekend which was really nice but Kaili is getting stir crazy. I thought that since her first day of school was before Labor day that she was starting early, but  compared to other kids in CA she is one of the last…and I’m jealous. I’m ready, she’s ready and I think even Averi’s ready.

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Broccoli with Sausage

What? A recipe? Did I surprise you? It’s been months since I have posted anything food related on here. This must mean the morning sickness is easing up, right?

This dish or I should say this recipe has been on a steady rotation  for dinner since I ripped it out of my magazine last Spring. Broccoli rabe or rapini has slowly disappeared from Sprouts so in place I use broccoli, just as good I swear.

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It’s Paleo friendly, easy to make and good for any meal of the day. Try topped with an egg for breakfast.

The only thing I do different than the original recipe is use less oil . If you are using pork sausage it doesn’t need too much extra grease, you know what I am saying?. You might find you need more oil if using chicken sausage but I doubt it.

*For Paleo substitute olive oil for coconut oil.

1 pound broccoli rabe, rapini or broccoli

2 tbs extra-virgin olive oil

4 ounces hot Italian sausage—casings removed, meat crumbled

2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

Pinch of crushed red pepper

Salt

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1/4 cup grated pecorino or parmesan cheese

In a pot of salted boiling water, cook the broccoli  until nearly tender, 4 minutes. Drain and let cool. Squeeze and pat dry, then chop.

Heat skillet to medium high and add  the sausage and cook over moderately high heat, breaking it up into small pieces, until browned. Add 2 tablespoons of oil, the garlic and red pepper to the skillet and cook for 1 minute. Add the broccoli {rabe} and cook, stirring, until tender, 3 minutes. Season with salt. Add the lemon juice and toss. Serve with pecorino or parmesan.

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