Friday, April 30, 2010


here are a few of my tools that go wherever i go...

1. timer.. it's cute and it ticks aloud
2. mits that fit my hands and cute too
3. bread knife.. one tool that cuts everything... fast.

it's essential to have the right tools in your kitchen & here are few rules to go with gathering your tools..

first: you must love the tool.. whether it's the feel of the tool in your hand, the color, the look of it, the way it feels/looks in your space. two: the impact it had being born on the planet... i am a huge believer in quality over anything else... cooking is a craft & it requires the best tools.. if you use crappy tools, you will have a crappy time of cooking... and it works the other way around.. when you have a tool that you admire and respect, you begin to feel that with what you gather, create & cook. three: quality tools.. yep they do cost. you can save up & get the most important thing first and create a wish list of things you know you need. we are a country of consumers of what we never use!! so when it comes down to actually spending a little more on what you will use everyday ( 2 -3 meals a day), we resist....we really won't buy it because we believe we could use that money to buy so much more... yeah, so much more of what we won't ever use.... we have all been brainwashed by the cheap, easy, convenient ways of the world. i am like a phoenix rising to that idea... i am so passionate about it i almost want to send this with a little fire attachment to get the message across ;) if you have questions about tools please ask in the comment boxes.. i am sure everyone has the same or similar questions. it's basic: get things you love, that feel good to you and the mama earth, if it's cheap question why, start to value what you buy... lean more towards wood and steel. see you in the kitchenxxx

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

renaissance papa.

my grandmother, cleopatra, used to say your face speaks so loud i can hardly hear what you have to say...and this is how i feel about the work jamie oliver is doing...these conversations he is having with americans, parents, kids, teachers..... kids not knowing what a tomato or a potato looks like... this is not only an epidemic but a red bull up our tooshies to KEEP THIS CONVERSATION GOING!!! we might think that this is far away from los angeles, unfortunately it's not... we all need to come together and help each other learn this nourishing, nurturing piece.. it's essential to our evolution, our childrens growth and our planets... comments? the only way to change... is to keep sharing, passing it on, BEING THE CHANGE... and if you don't know what to do... call me. see you in the kitchenXXX

Friday, April 23, 2010

fried green tomatoes.

yep.. it's true.. these are the easiest things to cook up if 1. you find them at the market & 2. the setup. OH and it's so so fun for the kids. ocean was loving the dipping and then the coating... it's really great to see that kind of sculpture take place... so i tried these in the RM kitchen thursdays with just corn meal... and it was like eating the beach...the next week i made them again with a little mixture of flour, corn meal & i can't remember now if i put some matzo meal in there... but whatever the case.. the flour saved the day & smoothed out all the bumps and it so yummy.... the key here like i said: set up & tools... get your egg mixture going in a small to medium sized bowl that you can work in and out of with your hands... the amount of eggs depends on how many tomatoes you have.. there were no measurments in this... (i know.. shocking ;) and then in another wide rimmed bowl.. mix the flour & corn meal *(you can experiment with all sorts of flours and meals... add matzoh meal if you want to) then make sure everything is close together and close to the medium high heated pan filled with canola oil.. or grapeseed.. or you could experiment here too..with different high heated oils like sunflower, peanut, etc... get your papar bag for the fried tomatoes after so you have your assembly line going... have a great time! see you in the kitchenxxx

Sunday, April 18, 2010

yam, i am.

mondays can be filled with so many lists... 'to do' lists, 'what didn't get done last week' lists, wish lists & 'what i want to be when i grow up''s full with expectation & hope. i feel like this happens so much in the kitchen and with our food... what to make, what to go and get, what to let rot, what to know, what i don't know at all..... and that list goes on and does this idea lead into this great salad? i have no idea. what i can tell you is...the RM 'food all the time' mantra is the way to go when any anxiety comes up around food and what you are going to make on a day to day basis...we are a culture that makes food for an occasion.. hello thanksgiving. and "dinner"... it's as though we have no other meals...'what are you making for dinner?' has an amazing PR person....that question makes it on the map on a daily basis.. oh yeah.. sunday brunches.. i have taken on a big job with renaissance mamas...inspiring women to embrace the kitchen again (before we ever thought of it as inconvenient.. oh i mean before the idea of convenience looked like black out shades, a nap & room service... so incredibly appealing) AND be in this modern time of gathering, creating a consciousness around our consuming & supporting a schedule that fits in this vital piece of our deepest NEEDS.. not only to eat but to be NOURISHED all the time... now i really have no idea how this connects to this recipe other than it's a great meal to have 'all the time' in the fridge or out on the counter in a beautiful vessel and a towel you love covering it.....ready to eat whenever!! i found it on this sweet site called not derby pie. here is the recipe:

Yam, Zucchini, and Chickpea Salad

inspired by 101 Cookbooks

2 yams, cut into a medium dice

1 zucchini, medium dice

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

2 garlic cloves

3 sprigs or more parsley, leaves finely chopped

2 scallions, chopped

1 Tbsp tahini
zest of one lemon
juice of one lemon
1 garlic clove, smashed into a paste with some salt
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread sweet potato and zucchini pieces in a single layer on a baking sheet, and drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast about 1 hour, until soft and caramelized in spots. If vegetables get soft before they darken, pop them under the broiler for 3 minutes, and they’ll get plenty brown. Remove, and set aside. In a small frying pan over medium heat, saute chickpeas and whole garlic cloves in 1 tsp of olive oil (just enough to moisten) for about 3 minutes, until the chickpeas dry out a bit. In a medium-large bowl, mix the chickpeas with the yams and zucchini. Salt and pepper to taste, if needed. Add the parsley. Combine all ingredients in the dressing; if too clumpy, add water by the teaspoon until the dressing is smooth and runny. Pour over vegetables, toss to coat, and serve warm or room temperature, or hell, even cold. This stuff is good any which way.

let me know how it goes...see you in the kitchenxxx

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

artichokes & chickpeas.

to continue on with love & care... here is a recipe that is fast on the prep, inspired by spring & gorgeous. the colors mirror that warmth that is just beginning to make it's way into the middle of the day, (that 'get in your car and don't do a thing heat' that makes you want to take an instant nap)... and the taste is grounded, simple & lovely. there are all sorts of choices in this recipe to love, care or both... i get to the heart of the artichokes peeling away the layers and then cutting them in half with my bread knife...then i get a heavy saute pan out & put it on medium-high & add olive oil & garlic. we are packing light (taking off all our purple feathers) so i make sure it's hot & slide them in there... don't touch them with your wooden wand. let them sear, saute, heat up, cook & remain in their designated spot for more than 5 minutes... then use your over-excited urge to move them around... feeling like you are making something happen. we all do it. let cook for a while.. you can also roast and use the oven for this which is below... then i add the garbanzo beans and let marinate together... toast the sesame seeds.. and add lemon zest, juice & seeds at the end.. so good... see you in the kitchenxxx

here is the recipe i found: roasted artichokes chickpeas & garlic salad with lemon & sesame then i did a bit of my own thing.. let me know what you think!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

love & care.

now this has got me thinking...steeping.. listening..and understanding something i do all the time and seeing it in a new light...this is the beginning of another RM conversation: love & care. this topic feels delicate with a strong spine of committment framed in cashmere socks.. just kidding....well...ok maybe i am not kidding.. would that be weird ? it's always good to be grounded in some cashmere....i mean you gotta stay warm right? and why do i say delicate? because when you talk to a mama about love and care.. the voice inside says...yep. check. of course, i have those things..i am a mom. the end...and then you move this concept into the kitchen and the whole dynamic it's almost offensive to ask about love and care. why? why is this? because we are beating time down with a whiffle ball bat ? beacuse we are lacking the deepest needs of a mama starting with self-care? or is it lack of knowledge? support? olive oil & yellow onions? i want to hear your thoughts on this one...see you in the kitchenxxx

*in the photo: purple artichokes.. recipe on it's way*

Saturday, April 10, 2010

peas & beans.

how gorgeous are these snap peas & fava beans!!! it's impossible to look at these without excitment! i am so incredibly inspired by spring that it fuels me to do the crazy prep that this dish entails...i suggest gathering a few of your favorite vessels and taking them to the table, outside on the patio or the yard...putting a blanket down & prepping in a meditation mode.... you can also do this while watching the babes or have them help. ocean loves to prep the snap peas.. i showed him how you bring the thread part down to open the side and then open up the pea like snap surgery.. he gets so excited about telling me how many are in each pod. it's about 2 lbs of snap peas pods to 2 cups of peas (depending on the size). they have been ranging from 3.50 - 5 dollars per lb. at the market. the fava beans are a deeper prep situation as they have the cushy duvet like pod, one casing and then you finally make your way to the thin green bean....this dish is perfect for the RM mantra of food all the time...and yes there is definitely prep... it goes along with this conversation we have been having in the RM thursday classes in my kitchen.. love versus care in your creating, gathering, cooking the food... i feel that love - which is a very RM idea... to put the love in and you can actually taste it..massage it with love faster in it's dynamic... love is fast.. but care... caring... feels slow in it's dance.. right? how do you feel about this? i think you make a conscious commitment to care... love feels easier and great and necessary. and absolutely it must be there with intention... that's when it works.. but the care piece... is something that i am steeping in... you can feel it on a deeper level with the most simple foods... this feels like a care piece in it's prep. it slows you down, grounds you and makes you stop... then the rest of this is so fast and easy it's raddichio.. i mean rediculous. (really inspired...) ok. this spring ragout with the pasta was sent to me through the 101 cookbooks emails... here is the post for this dish... this is SO fast (once you have everything ready)...heidi also used asparagus.. which you absolutely can.. i didn't in this b/c i love the peas and beans!

20-30 fava bean pods, removed from puffy shell
extra virgin olive oil
fine grain sea salt
1 1/2 cups peas, freshly shelled or frozen
zest of one lemon
splash of cream
pecorino cheese (Parmesan would be a fine alt.)
edible flowers for garnish (totally optional)

Cook fava beans for about a minute in a pot of salted water. Drain, run under cold water, and shell 2nd layer. To do this pinch each fava to break the skin and gently squeeze to separate the bean from the skin. Set aside. In a cold skillet big splash of olive oil, 2 big pinches of salt, and 2 tablespoons of water. Heat over medium high heat and when the water starts bubbling add the asparagus spears. Cover and cook for 30-45 seconds, longer if the asparagus is thicker until it is barely tender and bright green. Stir in the peas peas and cook uncovered for another 20 seconds or so (maybe a touch longer if you were using peas that were frozen). Stir in the lemon zest, the tiniest splash of cream, and serve garnished with edible flowers. Serves 4.
please let me know how this goes.... and how the love & care conversation goes too... would love to hear what you think... see you in the kitchenxxx

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

seder 2010.

i just wanted to share the sweetness that was in my home last week for passover....this time of unleashing the slavery and beginning again... a gathering of minds, voices & hearts, hearing the stories, eating the matzoh & drinking my fave: the manishevitz... i wish i photographed the meal as it was full of yummy action ;) my sweet friend brought an offering of plague finger puppets to the seder. it was an absolute must that they adorn the cobalt & gold plates. it's all about balance, don't you think? it is always fun to modernize the times & lighten up those plagues...we had a very special table of friends and family join us. i continue to steep in the beauty that was surrounding us as we shared our feelings about the holiday, our inspiration for the rebirth & the journey toward that freedom. see you in the kitchen & thank you for letting me sharexxx

easter eggs.

i know, i know.. egged out. i just had to share these marbled beauties....quail eggs steeped in the normal paas dyes... inspiring me to do this all year long....see you in the kitchenxxx