Category Archives: From the Kitchen

Soft Tacos with Roasted Mushrooms, Potatoes & Peppers with Spicy Bread and Butter Pickles & Coriander Pickled Onions

I’m really liking shishito peppers a lot lately. They are so different from bell peppers and chili peppers – almost like a combination pepper that has a wonderful chili like aroma while being mild and not too spicy.  I’ve been using them a lot in omelettes, savory bread puddings, in tacos, and in rice dishes too.  A little blistered with salt and pepper these peppers add wonderful taste and aroma to any dish.

IMG_2601.jpg

I made soft tacos with shishito pepper, mushrooms, potatoes, and onions. If shishito peppers are not in season in your area or are not available, you can substitute any bell pepper in this recipe. What gives these tacos their unique flavor in addition to the shishito peppers is homemade coriander pickled onions and spicy bread and butter pickles. I posted a recipe for pickled onions with coriander seeds and red chili, and those are the pickled onions I used. Continue reading Soft Tacos with Roasted Mushrooms, Potatoes & Peppers with Spicy Bread and Butter Pickles & Coriander Pickled Onions

Pickled Onions

My friend Rose brought a delicious herb and radish salad with pickled onions when she stopped by for lunch back in early July.  This salad was outstanding. What added an unexpected flavor to the salad was the pickled onions. Rose said she had made the pickled onions at home. When I asked her if they were hard to make, she said the recipe was super easy and shared it with me. I gave it a try, and she was right! For the gourmet taste and look of these delicious pickled onions, they were surprisingly simple to make and took just 5- 10 minutes to pull together. Continue reading Pickled Onions

Sweet and Tart Sun-dried Cherries Dark Chocolate Bites with Fuchsia Blossoms & Rose Petals

There is something about cherries and chocolate that is a marriage made in heaven.  Both are deep, dark, beautiful, and delicious, and their flavors blend together perfectly.

IMG_2134.jpg

I love cherries in their pure cherry form – fresh or dried, with no additives and no enhancements, just pure cherry flavor is what I favor. I’ve tried cherry pies, cherry ice cream, Black Forest Cake with Cherries, cherry flavored drinks, I’ve tried them all – though they all taste wonderful, I always come back to my favored way of eating cherries – pure unadulterated cherries. If I want to eat cherries in some other form than fresh or dried – the only other way is with pure chocolate. Continue reading Sweet and Tart Sun-dried Cherries Dark Chocolate Bites with Fuchsia Blossoms & Rose Petals

Federica Cucinelli’s Rigatoni with Tomato and Basil

We had just picked a harvest of juicy tomatoes from our garden with our cousins who were visiting from Austin, Texas, and these tomatoes were looking great. All I kept thinking is what is the best way to use my garden tomatoes to show of their bright flavors and started looking for a good recipe that would highlight their freshness.

IMG_3341

IMG_3338

IMG_3344

This pasta recipe by Italian luxury brand designer Brunello Cucinelli’s wife Federica looked like the perfect one to try.  I came across the article on nytimes.com over a month ago and held onto it waiting for the day when my garden tomatoes would be ripe and ready. Continue reading Federica Cucinelli’s Rigatoni with Tomato and Basil

Apple Bread Loaf

I was gifted a delicious apple bread loaf for Mother’s Day from our neighbor and friend Karen, and I have to say this apple bread loaf was outstanding. I’ve never had an apple bread loaf before, so naturally I didn’t know what to expect.  What I tried I liked very much 😋.

IMG_9463

The loaf itself is unusual as it is not like a cake but rather it had a whole grain nutty texture, which got me wondering if it was made with whole-wheat flour?  I asked Karen for the recipe and she graciously shared it with me, and yes, it was made with whole-wheat flour.

This apple bread loaf had a thick topping of a yummy cinnamon sugar and nut mixture, while the loaf itself was not very sweet.  In fact, it was so mild on the sweetness scale that if we wanted to we could have had it with some jam. But wait; there was a surprise inside when I cut the loaf! Continue reading Apple Bread Loaf

Green Apple & Sugar Snap Peas Salad

The inspiration for this salad came from my garden, in an effort to use up a few of my garden Anna apples in a savory dish, I decided to make a salad with apples and sugar snap peas. Both have similar texture and color, and both look good together. With a fruity vinaigrette and a dash of feta cheese or goat cheese this is a wonderful salad that tastes sweet, savory, and crunchy. It is also the perfect salad to make ahead. Continue reading Green Apple & Sugar Snap Peas Salad

Fresh Apple Ginger Cake

An apple cake that is not too sweet, not too dry, but just right? This recipe is the one. This apple cake is the perfect balance of sweet with a little kick of spices, all mixed together with grated fresh apples and fresh ginger.  I am loving fresh ginger in sweets and treats lately. I find it adds a nice spicy fragrant kick and especially balances the sweetness of cakes really well.

Continue reading Fresh Apple Ginger Cake

Watermelon Salad with Apricot Vinaigrette

I had an interesting arugula and watermelon salad at Italian restaurant Stella AlPina Osteria in Burlingame, California a few weeks ago. What was unusual with this salad was the presentation. The chef had tossed the arugula salad in apricot vinaigrette and served the salad with a side of thick watermelon wedges. Continue reading Watermelon Salad with Apricot Vinaigrette

Haricot Verts with Cumin Seeds, Asafoetida and Turmeric

This is my all time favorite way to have haricot vert beans – lightly seasoned and cooked to perfection.  If you are looking for a unique way to serve green beans, this is the recipe to try.

Haricot vert beans also known as French green beans tend to be skinnier than the regular green beans, and because of this, they cook faster and taste fresh even after being lightly sautéed with spices. Hericot vert green beans are so tender that they taste amazing when they are cut into tiny pieces allowing the delicate flavors from the interior of the green beans to come through. Continue reading Haricot Verts with Cumin Seeds, Asafoetida and Turmeric